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

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Who will stand up for corporations against evils of labor? Why the courts, that's who.


WASHINGTON — Employers can require their workers to sign arbitration agreements waiving all rights to class-action lawsuits over workplace grievances, a federal appeals court ruled on Tuesday. The ruling from the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit overturns a National Labor Relations Board decision last year that found such agreements conflicted with federal law giving workers the right to pursue collective action to complain about workplace conditions.

The court’s ruling is a win for businesses that want to limit legal exposure from the rising cost of class-action lawsuits over unpaid overtime and other wage violations. But it is a blow to workers who find it easier to band together when challenging the policies at a large company.

The case considered a policy in which D.R. Horton, a Fort Worth-based homebuilder, required all its employees to sign agreements to resolve any workplace disputes in individual arbitration proceedings rather than sue. The agreements prevented an arbitrator from granting relief to employees as a class or group.

In January 2012, the labor board ruled that the agreement violated workers’ rights under the National Labor Relations Act. Federal law has long protected the right of workers to join together to protest workplace conditions, including through litigation.

Wisconsin: More Opportunities to Meet Senator Vinehout!

Tired of corporate Dems? Here's your chance to meet the progressive candidate for Governor.


Wednesday, Dec 4th – Greendale

Open House 6:00-8:00pm

5174 Lakeside Dr, Greendale

Host: Marsha Vila

Thursday, Dec 5th – Waukesha

House Party 5:30-7:00pm

321 Harrison Ave, Waukesha

Host: Marga Krumins

Friday, Dec 6th – Brookfield

House Party 5:30-7:00pm

19160 Ashbourne Ln, Brookfield

Host: Roberta Boczkiewicz

Sunday, Dec 8th – Kenosha & Racine

Meet & Greet 11:00am-1:00pm

Caleo Coffeehouse

2324 18th St, Kenosha

Meet & Greet 2:30-4:00pm

Wilson’s Coffee and Tea

3306 Washington Ave, Racine

The Affordable Care Act is devastating to seniors

Did I say "devastating"? I meant "incredibly beneficial".

Republicans suffer from mixed emotions

Wisconsin: Cheesehead response to Governor ALEC, er Grinch

By now, DU readers have probably heard that Governer (sic) Squat Wanker of Wisconsin sent and email suggesting his supporters donate to his campaign rather than buying gifts for their kids, and that he fired the staffer who authored that email, not for the email but for a racist tweet she had sent two years ago (wink, wink).

The Cheesehead response:

Tell the IRS to investigate ALEC - MoveOn petition


In light of new evidence reported in the Guardian this week, we respectfully request that the Internal Revenue Service investigate whether the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) has violated federal tax law by making substantial misrepresentations on its sworn tax returns.

Petition Background

ALEC’s primary purpose is to influence legislation at the state level, yet for years it has disclaimed on its tax returns spending a penny on lobbying.

As the Guardian reported, last summer ALEC informed legislators and corporate lobbyists that it has incorporated a new organization to seek non-profit status under section 501(c)(4) of the Internal Revenue Code. In so doing, ALEC appears to acknowledge that the allegations of tax fraud in complaints from Common Cause, the Voters Legislative Transparency Project, and Clergy Voice, supplemented by evidence provided by the Center for Media and Democracy, helped spur this incorporation.

These latest revelations about ALEC in the Guardian add weight to the argument that ALEC primarily operates like a trade group for its corporate funders, backing the bills sought by corporate lobbyists and buying lawmakers’ trips to meet with those lobbyists about bills

Rum Pa Pa Pum

The Ethics of Metaphor

In this article, the author suggest four tests for assessing the ethical use of metaphors such as naziism and slavery in public discourse. I'm interested in DU's collective response ...


1. The History Test. How closely does the metaphor correspond to the facts of the case, as best we understand them? When the Arizona congressman Trent Franks compares abortion to genocide, for example, we can begin by asking what is meant by genocide, what forms does it take, what are its legal definitions. Where has it historically occurred, and under what conditions? Who has sponsored and who has suffered it? In short, we attempt to understand the term in all its legal, cultural, and historical contexts. And this means we have to know what such terms mean before using them.

2. The Resonance Test. Certain metaphors and similes have a unique cultural power to incite. Such language goes beyond literal meanings to invoke longer histories of associations and images. “Hitler” is one such term. When we think of Hitler, we think of more than an individual, no matter how invidious. We recall the Warsaw ghetto, the death camps, and the gas chambers. “Hitler” is not simply the name of a person; it is a vessel brimming with historical memories. It is a bell that, when you ring it, the room is filled with other sounds, other echoes. There are many such terms: “lynching,” “blood libel,” “apartheid.” If we are to use such terms, we need to attend to their place in our collective cultural consciousness.

3. The Proportionality Test. Is the seriousness of the metaphor proportional to that which it is applied? Some years ago, I read a story in The Boston Globe in which a sportswriter described the walls of Fenway Park as closing in on the visiting pitcher the way Russian tanks surrounded Czechoslovakia during the Prague Spring. The metaphor failed, quite horribly, the proportionality test. When sensationalism overcomes judgment, we may be entering the realm of unethical discourse.

4. The Quiet Room Test. I use “Quiet Room” here to indicate a place for writers’ self-examination. The final test of the ethical metaphor, in other words, is the one we administer to ourselves. Deep down, we know—do we not?—when we are arguing to incite or to enlighten, to inflame or to understand. The last test, then, is the one we take in our own Quiet Rooms, evaluating the intentions and effects of our words.

Wisconsin: Meet AG candidate Ismael Ozanne forum in Fond du Lac Monday, December 9

Dane County District Attorney Ismael Ozanne is an experienced prosecutor with deep roots in Wisconsin. He is a candidate for Wisconsin Attorney General.

You Are Invited!
December Monthly Meeting
Join Us to Make A Difference!

Where? Fond du Lac Co. Labor Council Hall – 52 E. Bank St., Fond du Lac
When? Monday, December 9, 2013
Time: Meeting start: 7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.


Call to order.

Guest Speaker: Ishmael Ozanne, Democratic Candidate for Wisconsin Attorney General

Dane County District Attorney Ismael Ozanne is an experienced prosecutor with deep roots in Wisconsin. He is a candidate for Wisconsin Attorney General.


Ismael Ozanne is a front-line prosecutor with 13 years of experience. Ozanne currently serves as District Attorney in Dane County, the state’s second largest county. Ozanne has dedicated his career to public service and at the Department of Corrections he helped lead Wisconsin’s prison system and largest state agency. Throughout his career, Ismael Ozanne has fought to keep families and communities safe and he’ll do the same as Wisconsin’s Attorney General.

District Attorney Ismael Ozanne is a sixth generation Wisconsinite. He was born in Madison and has deep roots in the capital city as well as the Fox Valley.

Learn more about Ismael and join the campaign at: iozanne.com

You live in a barn or what?

Converted barns can make great homes ...

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