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Member since: Thu Apr 29, 2010, 02:31 PM
Number of posts: 53,475

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Worker Owned Works ~ A Decade after the Take: Inside Argentina’s Worker Owned Factories


“The economy is pretty unstrustworthy in Argentina right now – the economy’s 30% inflation will eat away at your paycheck till there is nothing left and it’s not wise [to] invest in with Argentina pesos. It is very difficult to conduct business at all given the frustrating lack of transparency of most monetary transactions. Which is why it’s incredible that worker-owned businesses have flourished in the rubble. In Argentina, worker ownership requires trust against all odds. As a student of economics and a young activist, I have held the worker-ownership model in Argentina up as a beacon I could orient towards, an alternative and a method of resistance that might be widely applicable.”

“This movement provided immense hope for many around the world who saw factory occupation and recuperation as the beginning of a paradigm shift; a chance to build a new system within the broken shell of globalized capitalism. The flood of energy and idealism was undoubtedly released in the US by a film by Naomi Klein and Avi Lewis called The Take, documenting a successful factory recuperation. I gained a window into the maturation of this dream in Buenos Aires now 11 years after the first factory take over, of a movement that through its institutionalization process has held fast to some fairly radical principles while beginning to access to mainstream markets.”

“While the economic conditions of Argentina have been incredibly precarious, the consciousness that evolved as a result of the crisis provided fertile ground for a vibrant movement. Similar conditions are ripening in the US as well. Detroit, Cleveland, St. Louis and Chicago are all looking to new economic models. Chicago is the home of the first worker cooperative takeover of a factory in the US. New Era Windows and Detroit Unions are seriously considering replacing the corporate auto industry that fled with their jobs with worker-owned industries. Despite the movement’s contradictions, Argentina is still a priceless window into a new path and economic paradigm of worker’s dignity, mutual aid and trust that can provide tangible inspiration to struggle workers and communities around the world.”

Wisconsin: There's just too much transparency in government, but Glenn Grothman will fix that.


Bill would greatly limit public access to employers of campaign donors

Madison — The public would be kept in the dark about who employs the vast majority of donors to state and local candidates, including all Assembly candidates and City of Milwaukee aldermanic candidates, under a proposal from a Republican lawmaker.

The bill by Sen. Glenn Grothman (R-West Bend) would lift the threshold at which political donors would have to disclose who they work for, a piece of information that often shows their underlying financial interest by revealing ties to an influential union seeking state legislation or a business seeking a city contract.

Under current law, donors must disclose their principal employer if they donate more than $100 in total to candidates in any one year. The proposal would raise that threshold to more than $500 in total contributions.

In one stroke, that would exclude all Assembly contributions and all aldermanic contributions in the state since the maximum donations to those offices are all $500 or less. It also would exclude almost all donations to county board supervisors.

You can always count on Glenn to do the wrong thing!

The Furlough Special

Seen yesterday in Washington D.C.

Wisconsin: Should Public Taxpayers Pay for Discrimination?


Why Milwaukee Public Schools should not sell Malcolm X to St. Marcus

The St. Marcus School in Milwaukee has been in the news recently for trying to bully the city's School Board into selling a large public school to St. Marcus, a private voucher school. Amid the controversy, no reporter has asked whether the public should be forced to financially support homophobic, anti-woman beliefs that are at odds with democratic rights and public policy.

Unlike in Milwaukee's public schools, for instance, the school council at St. Marcus is appointed, not elected. More important, only men are allowed to appoint the St. Marcus council members. The St. Marcus Evangelical Lutheran Church, which oversees the St. Marcus School, is part of the conservative Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod. As a religious-based school, St. Marcus and its teachers are expected to defend and promote the synod’s beliefs.

The Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod (WELS) was founded in Milwaukee in 1850. Its core beliefs include:

Homosexuality is a sin.

Living together outside of marriage is a sin.

Women are not to hold positions of authority over men. (The synod’s web page notes: “God gave to the man the unique calling of being a loving head and to his wife the unique calling of being a loving helper to him.”

A literal interpretation of the Bible.

The theory of evolution is wrong. (In explaining the discrepancy between the scientific view that the earth is 4-5 billion years old and the Biblical timeline of about 6,000 years, the synod’s website notes: “The short answer is that the earth was created with the appearance of age. On the first day everything looked older than it was.”)

The Papacy of the Roman Catholic Church is the anti-Christ. (A “Doctrinal Statement on the Anti-Christ” from the WELS website ends with the statement: “Scripture teaches that the Antichrist would be revealed and gives the marks by which the Antichrist is to be recognized (2 Th 2:6,8), and since this prophecy has been clearly fulfilled in the history and development of the Roman Papacy, it is Scripture which reveals that the Papacy is the Antichrist.”

Since 1998, the St. Marcus School has received almost $22 million in public tax dollars via the voucher program, according to figures from the state Department of Public Instruction.

The Affordable Care Act (AKA “Obamacare”) Is Going To Save Me Over $10K Per Year

No, not me Scuba, but the author of this article.


I have written about the travesty of the American “Health Care” System before. Our current system benefits Big Pharma and CEOs. And the reason why the current GOP Congress has been fighting tooth and nail to get the Affordable Care Act off the tracks, is because it will make health insurance premiums go to actual health care for the insured.

I have been self-employed since 2002 and have had health insurance, on the same policy, with Blue Shield the entire time. I am currently paying $811 per month. My premiums have been raised frequently, randomly and excessively, particularly since they could see that their fleecing of the American public would soon be coming to an end. They could see that with President Obama and the Affordable Care Act that the only way they would be able to continue to rape us–without even a hint of lubricant–would be to raise the premiums early and often. Here is a brief history of MY PERSONAL PREMIUMS as a single self-employed female with Blue Shield:


But here’s what the Tea Party and the GOP don’t want you to hear. Yesterday, October 1, 2013 marked the first day of open enrollment for the Affordable Care Act. I called Blue Shield, my current provider, to see what my options were–although I must admit I was very skeptical. To my surprise, I was told:

My $811 monthly premiums would be reduced to $85 per month
My $2400 annual medical deductible would be reduced to $500
My current maximum out-of-pocket expenses are determined by a complicated multitude of factors and would be reduced from a minimum of $4800 per year to $2250 per year
My regular primary care physician visits are going to be reduced from $150 to $15
My lab work, x-rays, mammograms, etc. will be reduced to a maximum of $15 each–many preventative visits are INCLUDED in the monthly premiums!

National Parks Shutting Down Costs Local Communities $76 Million Per Day


Millions of tourists today are finding locked gates and closed roads at America’s national parks and monuments as a result of House Republicans’ demand that the federal government be shut down unless Obamacare is defunded, delayed, or repealed. Not only are these closures disrupting people’s lives by forcing them to cancel weddings and vacations, they are dealing an immediate blow to the local economies that benefit from the 300 million visitors who come to national parks each year and who, together, help support America’s $646 billion outdoor recreation economy.

The National Park Service put out a press release Tuesday noting that the government shutdown of national parks alone will result in total economic losses of $76 million per day to local communities. National parks provide economic benefits in a variety of ways, including tourists’ purchases of gasoline, food, lodging, and gear in “gateway communities” near national parks.

The states represented by Republican leadership in Congress will also be hard hit. Ohio, for example, home of House Speaker John Boehner, is losing $310,000 per day. Virginia, home of House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, is losing $3.3 million per day. And California, home of House Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy is losing $8.5 million per day.

It’s also worth pointing out that Texas, home of Republican Senator Ted Cruz who spent 21 hours on the Senate floor railing against Obamacare last week, is losing out on more than $1 million per day by national parks in the state being closed.

Wisconsin - Monologues of Scott Walker: Job creation cannot be measured in "jobs"


Welcome to a new exercise in dissent at MoD, Monologues of Scott Walker, in which we provide a summary and analysis of the presumed inner and outer monologues of one Scott Kevin Walker, who refuses still to communicate with those he governs in any coherent or meaningful way (including, but not limited to, by refusing to instruct his staff to reply to their emails or phone calls to his office; by refusing to attend events which are open to the public or invite public comment or conversation; and by refusing to attend events which are neither publicity stunts nor fundraisers). If you happen to be the governor in question, and you're reading this, please know that the doors to alternative modes of communication remain open, and we welcome you to make use of them. Many others in positions of power and/or publicly elected office often do, in fact, communicate with their constituents, and there are many resources at your disposal if you are uncertain as to addressing the difficulties of doing so, or scared about accidentally saying something true, or encountering people who may not give you money, at one of those events.


It's not hard to read between the lines when one has a record like yours, Governor Walker, and since you refuse to communicate with us in any real way, I'm sure you'll understand the necessity of providing a more coherent summary of what your spin and your actions are saying to the people of Wisconsin. Were it not so damaging, I'd almost admire your well-bought skills in distorting your record of failure and presenting it as a record of success, meeting every latest documentation of your dismal jobs record with a misleading press release touting the "success" of your industry-stalling, worker-stomping, economy-halting policies, in a move my dad, Rick DuBois, so beautifully sums up thus:


The facts: A report from Business Journal ranked you 6th Worst Governor in the US in job creation, 40th out of 45 governors evaluated. Sen. Dave Hanson (D-Green Bay) sums up that news aptly: “When a publication like the Business Journal says our Governor is 6th worst in creating jobs, folks should listen to them. Even by his own standards, the Governor is not even half-way to keeping his promise of creating 250,000 jobs in his first term.”

Your response: put out a press release and get your cronies at the Wisconsin Manufacturers and Commerce (the unofficial propaganda arm of your campaign enterprise) to dump a staggering $800,000 into an ad campaign that willfully distorts another study, from the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia, to give the impression that you are actually leading the nation and the Midwest in job growth (which, of course, you aren't, as everyone who looks at the real data knows). The Philly Fed, incidentally, immediately responded to denounce your blatant manipulation of this jobs data, discrediting the spurious "rankings" their numbers cannot be used to suggest. Ironically, Federal Reserve Bank data also demonstrates that Wisconsin is 49th in economic recovery, but that bit somehow missed inclusion in your ad. Your buddies at the Journal Sentinel tried to soften that blow by stressing how those rankings aren't a very clear indicator, and a more clear indicator might be to look at better data: The most accurate reading of the state's employment trends show Wisconsin ranks at No. 44 in private-sector job creation in the most recent 12-month period. In the same time frame, also using accurate data, Wisconsin ranks as the nation's fifth worst in terms of the erosion in private-sector wages, in which the state's 2.2% decline is twice the rate of the national 1.1% average.

"During the shutdown, the FDA will have to cease most of its food-safety operations ..."

What could possibly go wrong? We don't need to monitor imported food when the "free hand of the market" is doing it for us.

Reince's Ignorance


It would be really nice if we could continue monitoring food safety in the US:

During the shutdown, the Food and Drug Administration will have to cease most of its food-safety operations. That includes "routine establishment inspections, some compliance and enforcement activities, monitoring of imports, notification programs (e.g., food contact substances, infant formula), and the majority of the laboratory research necessary to inform public health decision-making."

Oh yes, let it begin.

Snuggles, who wants some snuggles?

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