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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Glossing Over America's Jobs Crisis

Jim Hightower

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

Glossing Over America's Jobs Crisis

When I saw the headline in my local paper, I wanted to laugh out loud. But that's really hard to do when you're gritting your teeth.

The headline proclaimed, "Jobs lost during slump regained." It was another smiley-face sticker that the establishment media keeps trying to slap over America's jobs crisis. This story gushed that the private sector, which had punted 8.8 million jobs after Wall Street greed crashed the economy in 2007, has now reached the "milestone" of restoring those jobs. So see, everything is okey-dokey – and all of you hard-hit workers should quit bellyaching.

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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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Robin Hood Tax NOW!

Robin Hood Tax NOW!

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.