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Employee and Employer Relations

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BeatTheChip.org

Showtime resumes from 9-10 AM, with a one hour time slot. This week on Waking Up Orwell we will be speaking to Jim Turner, a Washington attorney representing Citizens for Health, an organization suing the FDA for approving the H1N1 swine flu vacci

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Economic hard times are not new. The fact is they happen regularly and a country has limited ways to restart their economy. The first action is to put people to work, this is accomplished by expanding the military (start a war, make the w

Letters to the Editor • Global
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AP

Despite predictions the Great Recession is running out of steam, the House is taking up emergency legislation this week to help the millions of Americans who see no immediate end to their economic miseries.

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Reuters

The number of U.S. workers filing new claims for jobless benefits unexpectedly rose last week, a government report showed on Thursday, fanning worries of an anemic recovery from the worst recession in 70 years.

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NY Times

While the private sector has shed 6.9 million jobs since the beginning of the recession, state and local governments have expanded their payrolls and added 110,000 jobs.   "I am a little surprised at the fact that state and local government has remained as stable as it has in the nation as a whole, given the depth of the current recession,"

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NY Times

In a program that values timeliness above all else, decisions involving more than a million applicants have been slowed, and hundreds of thousands of needy people have waited months for checks.

And with benefit funds at dangerous lows even before the recession began, states are taking on billions in debt, increasing the pressure to raise taxes or cut aid, just as either would inflict maximum pain.

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The Agitator

One of the dirty little secrets in politics is just how terribly labor activist groups treat their own labor. The latest example is Ralph Nader’s Fund for the Public Interest. Nader’s groups have been guilty of this for years.

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Peter Schiff

In a free market, demand is always a function of price: the higher the price, the lower the demand. What may surprise most politicians is that these rules apply equally to both prices and wages. When employers evaluate their labor and capital needs, cost is a primary factor. When the cost of hiring low-skilled workers moves higher, jobs are lost. Despite this, minimum wage hikes, like the one set to take effect later this month, are always seen as an act of governmental benevolence. Nothing could be further from the truth.

When confronted with a clogged drain, most of us will call several plumbers and hire the one who quotes us the lowest price. If all the quotes are too high, most of us will grab some Drano and a wrench, and have at it. Labor markets work the same way. Before bringing on another worker, an employer must be convinced that the added productivity will exceed the added cost (this includes not just wages, but all payroll taxes and other benefits.)

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Bloomberg

There is never a good time to raise the minimum wage. Just ask the people working in low-skilled jobs that are laid off as a result.

Now is a particularly bad time. Yet the federal minimum wage is scheduled to rise to $7.25 on July 24, the third step of a $2.10 increase enacted in 2007. In more than half the states, the minimum wage already exceeds the current national minimum of $6.55 an hour.

 

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Washington Post

Senate Democrats outlined plans yesterday to overhaul the nation's immigration laws, including a requirement that all U.S. workers verify their identity through fingerprints or an eye scan.

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AP

New applications for jobless benefits plunged to the lowest level in 14 weeks, a possible sign that the massive wave of layoffs has peaked. But the total number of people receiving jobless benefits climbed to 6.35 million, a 14th straight record.

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Wall Street Journal

President Barack Obama told AFL-CIO union leaders Tuesday in a videotaped address that the controversial Employee Free Choice Act will pass, signaling his full backing for legislation that makes union organizing easier.

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AP

"Making our economy work means making sure it works for everyone," Obama said. "That there are no second class citizens in our workplaces, and that it's not just unfair and illegal — but bad for business — to pay someone less becau

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NY Times

Congress gave final approval on Tuesday to a civil rights bill providing women, blacks and Hispanics with powerful new tools to challenge pay discrimination in the workplace. It is likely to be the first significant legislation signed by President Ob

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