Leo W. Gerard

President’s Perspective

Leo W. Gerard USW International President

GOP Budget: The Anti-Robin Hood Spending Plan

GOP Budget: The Anti-Robin Hood Spending Plan

Rejecting dozens of heroic characters, from Captain America to Underdog, Republicans last week chose instead a villain for their figurehead. 

They selected Prince John, the guy who coddled the rich and tried to crush Robin Hood. House Republicans voted to elevate Prince John as their champion when they passed a budget slashing taxes for the rich and decimating programs for workers and low-income Americans.

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Thomas Piketty: Wealth Inequality Corrupts Our Politics

Isaiah J. Poole

Isaiah J. Poole Executive editor, OurFuture.org

Toward the end of the Economic Policy Institute’s forum Tuesday featuring economist Thomas Piketty, he was asked what he would consider the most serious consequence of the historic levels of wealth inequality he documents in his new book, “Capital in the 21st Century.” Almost without hesitation, he says, it’s how it affects “the working of our democratic institutions.”

When wealth inequality gets too extreme, as he says it has in the United States, “there is a sense that the political institutions are just captured by the top income and the top class group. Pre-World War I is clearly an example, and I think we need to have a serious discussion about whether we are going to be in the same situation in this country.”

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Rand Paul’s Plan To Rebrand The GOP, And The Lie That Ruins It

Bill Scher

Bill Scher Online Editor, Campaign for America's Future

Rand Paul’s Plan To Rebrand The GOP, And The Lie That Ruins It

On Saturday, Sen. Rand Paul traveled to New Hampshire and addressed conservative activists at the Freedom Summit.

In his remarks he described his vision to “grow our movement” and attract new constituencies to the Republican fold. Namely, “We can’t be the party of the plutocrats and the rich people.”

This was brave talk at an event co-sponsored by the Koch brothers’ Americans for Prosperity Foundation.

He continued:

We have to show concern for people who are out of work … we have to have ideas … There’s always more of a working class … than an owner’s class. I’m not against the owner’s class, but I want to tell the workers of America that we’re on their side. The President keeps offering you free stuff, but you’re still in poverty … more unemployment insurance? Frankly, I think they’d rather have a job.

Tantalizing. Paul is suggesting his brand of libertarian Republicanism holds the key to creating jobs, and Barack Obama’s activist government vision does not.

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Fast Fortunes: On the Diamond and Beyond

Sam Pizzigati

Sam Pizzigati Editor, Too Much online magazine

Fast Fortunes: On the Diamond and Beyond

Detroit Tigers infielder Miguel Cabrera may or may not turn out to be, by the time he retires, the best hitter in baseball history. But Cabrera already holds a historic distinction. Last month, just before baseball’s 2014 opening day, the 31-year-old slugger became America’s highest-paid professional ballplayer ever.

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Fast Food Chains Stealing from Low-Wage Workers

Jim Hightower

Jim Hightower Author, Commentator, America’s Number One Populist

Fast Food Chains Stealing from Low-Wage Workers

No matter how small the haul is, a thief is a thief, right? If a poverty-wage fast-food worker sneaks out a couple of burgers to take home to the kids, the bosses yell: "Thief!"

But what do you call it when the bosses steal from those same workers? How about outrageous, disgusting – or simply unbelievable? Well, believe it or not, it's happening every day in multiple ways, and not by a few bad apples, but in what has become routine corporate practice by McDonald's, Burger King, Domino's, and other hugely-profitable giants.

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Republicans Deny Medicaid Coverage for Spite

Republicans Deny Medicaid Coverage for Spite

Union Matters

The Traditional Power of a Work Stoppage

By Michele Petrovsky

Most folks consider the Homestead Strike of 1892 as the seminal event in the history of labor unions in this country.  But that bloody, brutal battle between steelworkers and Pinkertons had an antecedent.

In the 1600s, in the Jamestown colony of what was to become Virginia, unskilled labor was imported.  Slaves or indentured servants did the dirty work.  But skilled laborers were recruited from Great Britain and, to a lesser extent, Germany.

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