Dec 11 2015

‘A Woman’s Ability to Pay Her Bills Should Not Be Dependent on the Whims of Customers’

CounterSpin interview with Saru Jayaraman on the lower wage for tipped workers

Saru Jayaraman

“The restaurant industry and the Pullman train company…demanded the right to hire newly freed slaves and not pay them anything and let them live on customer tips.”

Dec 5 2015

WaPo Attacks Unions for Seeking Higher Wages for Their Members

UAW negotiators (photo: Daniel Mears/AP)

The Washington Post’s Charles Lane argues that the United Auto Workers supports outsourcing. His smoking gun is that if the union had agreed to lower pay for its workers at the Big Three, then they might shift fewer jobs to Mexico.

Nov 27 2015

Saru Jayaraman on Outlawing the Tipped Minimum Wage

Restaurant worker (cc photo: Daveblog)

There’s a movement to outlaw the “tipped wage” — the idea that a minimum wage of $2.13 is OK, because waitstaff get enough in voluntary tips to make up for it.

Nov 23 2015

‘You Cannot Build a Strong Economy on a Falling Wage Floor’

CounterSpin interview with Holly Sklar on minimum wage economics

Holly Sklar (image: BillMoyers.com)

“You need people to have enough wages to be able to buy what they need. And if you are going to have a growing middle class, you need people to be able to buy more than just the bare necessities.”

Sep 24 2015

‘They’re Robbing Kids of Critical Thinking’

CounterSpin interview with Jesse Hagopian about educational struggles in Seattle

Jesse Hagopian

“The movement is truly a mass social struggle to redefine the purpose of education: instead of being filling in bubbles, actually critical thinking.”

Jul 16 2015

The Minimum Wage–and Other Left Ideas Washington Post Might Find ‘Lame’

Scott Walker (photo: State of Wisconsin)

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker denounced the left for not having any real ideas for workers. In his Washington Post column The Fix, Philip Bump largely endorsed this perspective.

Jun 16 2015

Scapegoating Labor for Fast Track’s Defeat

Anti-TPP rally, New Zealand (cc photo: Neil Ballantyne/Wikimedia)

Virtually every organized Democratic constituency made it clear that defeating fast track was a top priority. Yet all these movements tended to drop out of establishment media accounts of the fast track fight, leaving labor as the lone opponent.

May 15 2015

Tiffany Finck-Haynes on Bee Collapse, Michelle Chen on Nail Salon Workers

Honeybees

Are pesticide-makers’ PR efforts affecting government research into massive bee die-offs? And are occasional blockbuster stories like the NYT piece on labor conditions in nail salons the best media can do for workers rights issues?