Saturday, January 24, 2015

Today's Teamster News 01.24.15

Trade
The Trans-Pacific Partnership won't deliver jobs or curb China's power (opinion)  Los Angeles Times   ...U.S. leaders promised [previous free-trade] deals would create high-paying jobs, reduce the trade deficit, increase GDP and raise living standards. But none of this came true...
Trans-Pacific Partnership Deal Isn't Secret, Says US Official, But Access To Text Is Highly Restricted  International Business Times   ...[U.S. Trade Representative] Michael From an and Roberto Carvalho de Azev√™do, the director-general of the World Trade Organization, were asked at the World Economic Forum why the TPP is being kept secret by the U.S. at the same time the European Union has just published the full text of a separate proposed trade agreement with the United State….
Bipartisan push to stop currency cheats could derail TPP  Washington Post   …The latest news is that lawmakers will ask for any agreement to include a provision to stop foreign countries from manipulating their currencies at the expense of U.S. manufacturers...
America's Losing the Currency War (opinion)  Bloomberg  … Now the ball is in Japan's court again, and the U.S. is "just sitting here watching, being the one country whose currency is rallying because everyone else is trying to devalue."...
State Battles
Workers fight anti-worker local right-to-work laws in Kentucky  TeamsterNation   ...You can bet it isn't Kentucky workers who are passing right-to-work laws in six counties so far this year. The workers are fighting them...
Republicans vote to end Pay Equity Commission  Fox31 Denver   … Senate Republicans again reminded their Democratic colleagues what it’s like being in the minority as they voted Wednesday afternoon to do away with the Pay Equity Commission, arguing that it’s a feckless body that hasn’t accomplished much. Democrats …are already returning to their oft-used narrative that the GOP is hostile to women by scrapping a body charged with rooting out gender discrimination in the workplace...
AN ACT CONCERNING LARGE RETAIL STORES AND EMPLOYMENT OF WORKERS DURING THE HOLIDAY SEASON.  Connecticut General Assembly   ...To require retail stores of five thousand square feet or more to close on certain holidays unless employees are given the option not to work holidays without penalty...
Rauner pulls plug on Quinn's last-minute moves  Chicago Tribune   ...Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner has pulled the plug on Democratic predecessor Pat Quinn’s attempt to raise the minimum wage for state contractors, require the governor to release more details about his tax returns and stop Illinois State Police from detaining people based on their immigration status...
Prevailing wage emerges as unions' next big battle  CNHI   …The labor movement may be facing another high-stakes fight as sentiment grows to roll back the prevailing wage for workers on public projects. [in Indiana]...
“Right to Work” Is the Wrong Answer for Wisconsin’s Economy  Economic Policy Institute   ...What RTW laws do is to make it illegal for a group of unionized workers to negotiate a contract that requires each employee who enjoys the benefit of the contract to pay his or her share of the costs of negotiating and policing it...
War on Workers
Labor at a Crossroads: In Defense of Members-Only Unionism (opinion)  American Prospect   ...Allowing members-only unions would protect the rights of those who wish to bargain collectively even if they fail to surmount all the legal hurdles necessary to establish the union as the representative of all employees in the workplace. The decision of the United Auto Workers union to engage in members-only bargaining at the VW plant in Chattanooga is a potentially revolutionary experiment with a new approach to union representation...
Why the Energy Selloff Is So Dangerous to the U.S. Economy  Wall Street on Parade   ... Oil-related companies in the U.S. now account for between 35 to 40 percent of all capital spending. Announcements of sharp cutbacks in capital spending and job reductions by these companies create big ripples, forcing related companies to trim their own budgets, revenue assumptions, and payrolls accordingly...
Buying a Nominee  National Journal   ...The coming presidential contest is ushering in an epochal shift: the arrival of candidate-specific nonprofits, personalized vehicles for a politician's supporters to raise and spend unlimited cash—completely clandestinely. It is poised to yield a campaign season more dominated by secret money than any election since Watergate...
Bob Dylan wants billionaire ‘job creators’ to start actually creating some jobs  Raw Story   … “People have to create jobs, and these big billionaires are the ones who can do it. We don’t see that happening. We see crime and inner cities exploding with people who have nothing to do, turning to drink and drugs. They could all have work created for them by all these hotshot billionaires. For sure that would create lot of happiness.”...
Wells Fargo, JPMorgan loan officers took cash kickbacks  CNN Money   ...Regulators said more than 100 loan officers at Wells Fargo (WFC) locations in Maryland and Virginia steered thousands of loans to Genuine Title, which went out of business last year, in exchange for cash...
Number of NC workers killed on the job nearly doubled last year  Charlotte News & Observer   ...Forty-four people died in work-related accidents last year, up from 23 in 2013. It was the highest number of worker deaths since 2011, when 53 died, according to the Labor Department...
Worker killed in steel factory accident  Boston Globe   …the worker was struck by a piece of steel as it was swinging on a crane inside the warehouse...
Miscellaneous
Senate Sets Final Vote For Keystone XL After Long, Tense Night Of Amendment Voting  ThinkProgress   ...The Senate was in session until midnight Thursday night, debating and voting on fifteen amendments to a bill that would approve the construction of the controversial Keystone XL tar sands pipeline. At the end of it all, Majority Leader Mitch McConnell filed for cloture, a procedural move that effectively sets up a final vote on Keystone for next week...
Federal Court Order: Explosive DOT-111 "Bomb Train" Oil Tank Cars Can Continue to Roll  DeSmogBlog   …A U.S. federal court has ordered a halt in proceedings until May in a case centering around oil-by-rail tankers pitting the Sierra Club and ForestEthics against the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT). As a result, potentially explosive DOT-111 oil tank cars, dubbed “bomb trains” by activists, can continue to roll through towns and cities across the U.S. indefinitely...