John Oliver’s rant –
The twin demons destroying the American Middle Class are Offshoring, and “Outsourcing”. They call it the “Gig economy”, and to be honest it is pretty f’cked up for the employees.
Offshoring is responsible for the massive growth of the Chinese economy. Back during Clinton and Bushit American companies off shored all of the computer chip Foundries. This resulted in a massive growth in the Chinese economy, and left America without a foundry on American soil capable of producing the high density chips used in everything from TVs to our most advanced weapons systems. No wonder the Chinese Military has been able to upgrade their weapons systems and launch Astronauts into space. We gave them the technology, all because of Wall Street greed and corporate avarice.Worse was the loss of American jobs, manufacturing through the movement of factories off shore, and high tech through a combination of H1b Visas enabling companies to bring cheap workers over from India and other countries to displace American Graduates, and second “Outsourcing” where either American jobs were shipped overseas, or to sweat shops on American soil. This is the driver behind Trump, and Sanders, Unfortunately in Trump’s supporter’s case they would rather cling to their racism and blame minorities – than blame who is actually screwing them. Stupid is and Stupid does.
For nearly 20 years Alfredo Molena made a middle-class living repairing bank ATMs in Los Angeles, despite being a high school dropout and immigrant from El Salvador.
By 2000 he was earning about $45,000 a year, enough to support his wife and two children in a spacious apartment and take periodic vacations to El Salvador and Hawaii. He had health insurance, a matching 401(k) plan, and a company-supplied cellphone and vehicle. But it all unraveled in 2005 after his employer, Bank of America, subcontracted the work to Diebold Inc., a firm specializing in servicing ATMs.
Today Molena drives a truck long-haul for about $30,000 a year, putting him in the bottom third of household incomes. He has no medical insurance. “I cannot afford it,” he snapped.
Globalization and the offshoring of U.S. manufacturing jobs to China and other cheap-labor countries are commonly blamed for driving down the wages and living standards of ordinary American workers, but there is another, less-known factor behind the shrinking middle class: domestic outsourcing.
Many jobs have been farmed out by employers over the years. No one knows their total numbers, but rough estimates based on the growth of temporary-help and other business and professional service payrolls suggest that one in six jobs today are subcontracted, or almost 20 million positions, said Lynn Reaser, economist at Point Loma Nazarene University in San Diego.
Separate Labor Department data show that some of these occupations have seen a significant decline in inflation-adjusted, or real, wages over the last decade.
In 2005, there were 138,210 workers nationwide who repaired ATMs, computers and other office machines, earning a mean annual salary of $37,640.
Ten years later, the number of such jobs had shrunk to 106,100, with most of them subcontracted at annual pay of $38,990. But after accounting for inflation, that’s a drop of about 15 percent from 2005.
By contrast, real wages for all occupations rose 1.3 percent between 2005 and 2015 � itself a tiny gain over the last decade, but still significantly more than those hit by domestic outsourcing.
“If a firm wants to save labor costs, outsourcing is just a way of resetting wages and expectations,” said Susan Houseman, a senior economist at the W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research in Kalamazoo, Mich.
Unlike the effect of offshoring, with its relocation of jobs and plants abroad, economists know relatively little about the extent and effects of decades of subcontracting production and services to third parties in the U.S. But what research has been done suggests the practice has played a significant role in the nation’s troubling trends of stagnating wages and rising inequality.
Rosemary Batt and other researchers at Cornell University found that large employers at subcontracted call centers, for instance, paid their workers about 40 percent less than comparable workers employed in-house at large firms, not including the value of health and retirement benefits…Read the Rest Here…
There is an entire subculture on the right which is in the day to day business of making up lies about people of color. It is the old Lynch Mob mentality, where horrific “facts” about a supposed crime are made up to stir racial rage among whites. This lurid material gets circulated in the right wing racist press, and despite being totally dis[proved and discredited, takes on a life of its own. Even the Chumph has repeated some of these lies as part of his political “truth”.
An Idaho prosecutor denied lurid reports promoted by anti-Muslim conspiracy theorists about the alleged gang rape of a young girl by three Syrian refugees.
The reports, which claim three boys sexually assaulted and then urinated on a 5-year-old special needs girl, have circulated on right-wing blogs and social media for a couple of weeks — but the county prosecutor said nearly every aspect of those claims was fabricated, reported the Idaho Statesman.
“There were no Syrians involved, there was no knife involved, there was no gang-rape,” said Grant Loebs, the Twin Falls County prosecutor.
The shocking reports are based on a real incident which has resulted in juvenile charges against two boys, but the prosecutor said few of the details reported on sites such as InfoWars and Creeping Sharia match evidence uncovered by investigators.
Three boys from Iraq and Sudan, ages 7, 10 and 14, were involved in the incident, which authorities said was recorded on cell phone video, but Loebs said the 5-year-old victim was not gang-raped.
The older boy did not touch the victim, Loebs said, and only one boy allegedly touched the girl.
The boys have been in the U.S. less than two years, officials believes, although police aren’t certain yet whether they’re refugees.
“It’s all absurd — there is no coverup at all,” Loebs said. “There is no motive to cover up. If they were Syrians, I would tell you they were Syrians and that we’re prosecuting three Syrian refugees. It wouldn’t bother me a bit to say that, but it bothers me if it’s not true.”
Police denied that it took officers two hours to arrive at the low-income apartment building, and Loebs said the initial call reported a possible crime that was “something a lot less serious than a sexual assault or lewd and lascivious conduct.”
Loeb knocked down reports that the boys’ fathers celebrated the attack with high-fives, and he blamed the inaccurate claims on anti-Muslim groups active in the Twin Falls area.
“There is a small group of people in Twin Falls County whose life goal is to eliminate refugees, and thus far they have not been constrained by the truth,” Loebs said. “They have not been constrained by the truth in the past, and I don’t expect them to be constrained by the truth in the future.”
About time. The NRA should be classified as a Domestic Terror organization. This has nothing to do with the millions of hunters and sportsmen out there, and everything to do with arming up mass murders.
Just days after the massacre in an Orlando nightclub left 49 people dead and 53 wounded, Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson on Tuesday said that gun control is now a critical element of protecting the U.S. homeland and keeping Americans safe.
“We have to face the fact that meaningful gun control has to be a part of homeland security,” Johnson said in an interview on “CBS This Morning.” “We need to do something to minimize the opportunity for terrorists to get a gun in this country.”
On the issue of people on the no-fly list and various other lists being able to purchase a weapon in the U.S., Johnson said, “I believe that that’s something that has to be addressed.”
Johnson said that President Obama is “frustrated” with the lack of action on preventing gun violence, but he’s still “determined.”
“I thought frankly after Sandy Hook where you have schoolchildren murdered in a classroom that maybe finally this will be the tipping point and we were not able to move the needle in Congress, unfortunately,” Johnson said.
Efforts to make gun laws stricter have failed in Congress over the last decade. The assault weapons ban, for example, expired in 2004 and lawmakers have not renewed that legislation. Democrats on Capitol Hill have grown increasingly frustrated and on Monday evening, shouted down Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wisconsin, after a moment of silence, demanding to know why the House isn’t considering gun control legislation.
“At this stage in the investigation, we know of no accomplices,” said Johnson, who reiterated that the U.S. intelligence community believes it was not a terrorist-directed attack, but rather terrorist-inspired.
In order to prevent homegrown terrorist attacks in the future, Johnson said it will require the government and the public to deepen their ties to U.S.-Muslim communities.
“We’re going to continue to build bridges to American-Muslim communities, not vilify them and drive them into the corners and shadows,” Johnson said.
FBI Director James Comey said Monday that the agency had interviewed the shooter three times between 2013 and 2014 and he was “thoroughly investigated,” but the inquiries were eventually closed. The attack is now raising questions about whether the FBI made any mistakes or did anything wrong in their investigations.
“I have a lot of confidence in the FBI,” Johnson said on CBS.
The so called “War on Drugs” has devastated certain black communities i America. It has resulted in the highest incarceration rate in the world, and ruined the lives of millions of young people. When every statistical analysis in the last 30 years has shown that whites are 6 times more likely to use, carry, and smuggle drugs – the only way where you can get to a situation here black kids are 6-8 times more likely to be arrested and charged is intentional. And that isn’t even getting into the issue of different sentences for chemically identical “crack” cocaine and powder cocaine leading to significantly longer prison terms for crack, which happens to be predominately the form of cocaine used by the poor and black folks.
As marijuana legalization expands across the U.S., the war on drugs inches closer to its long-awaited end. Hanging in the balance: those arrested or incarcerated for the drug, casualties of a war that’s been overwhelmingly waged in communities of color.
It’s one that, despite marijuana being legal in more than half the nation, is far from over. According to a report from the Colorado Department of Public Safety and Health, there was a 58 percent increase in marijuana arrests among black adolescents from 2012-2014. Among white adolescents, during the same time frame, arrests dropped eight percent.
While the federal government works to stop lawmakers from impeding on the freedoms of citizens in states where pot is legal, Oakland, California is looking to fix the damage that’s already done.
This week the city—known for uprooting the status quo—introduced a groundbreaking measure that’s been deemed “drug war reparations.”
Known officially as the “Equity Permit Program” it’s an ordinance that allocates half of its dispensary permits to people who’ve served time for marijuana violations in the last ten years, or lived in one of several zones with the highest number of arrests for the drug.
Written by councilwoman Desley Brooks, the equity program—at its core—is shattering the notion that marijuana violators are criminals. Instead, it offers them a front row ticket to a billion dollar industry fueled by the drug that once put them behind bars.
Social justice activists, while enthused by the idea, say the ordinance has problems—some of which, like a lack of financial assistance, may hinder the applicant’s ability to succeed. But its issues aside, the ordinance is nothing short of revolutionary, a piece of legislation which suggests that those struck down by pot should be the first its legalization lifts up. Oakland’s unanimous vote of approval is, if nothing else, a sign that those who’ve suffered from prohibition may soon be getting a green payback…Read The Rest Here…
Black serial killers are rarer than white. About 90% of serial killers in the US are white males. It is unclear whether that is because black killers tend to kill fellow blacks, and thus go unnoticed by the police…Or if there are sociological reasons. In this case, the killer, Lonnie Franklin probably killed dozens more than he was convicted for.
Lonnie David Franklin Jr. killed nine women and a teen girl in a Los Angeles crime spree dating back 30 years.
A former sanitation worker accused of being the “GrimSleeper“ serial killer was found guilty of murder on Thursday for the slayings of nine women and a teenage girl in a Los Angeles crime spree dating back 30 years.
The Superior Court jury reached its verdict on all 10 counts of murder against the defendant, Lonnie David Franklin Jr., 63, after deliberating just over a day, capping a trial that stretched over more than 11 weeks.
Franklin, who could face the death penalty, also was convicted of attempted murder for an attack on an 11th victim who survived being shot, raped, pushed out of a car and left for dead in 1988.
Judge Kathleen Kennedy instructed jurors to return to the courtroom on May 12 for the start of the trial’s penalty phase.
Franklin, whose attorney sought to raise questions about DNA evidence presented during the trial, was convicted of fatally shooting or strangling seven victims between August 1985 and September 1988, and three others between March 2002 and January 2007.
The gap of more than 13 years between the two spates of murders earned the killer the “GrimSleeper“ moniker. Since his March 2011 indictment, police said they had gathered evidence linking Franklin to at least six more slayings, some of which took place during the previously presumed lapse in killings.
Franklin, who sat impassively in court as the verdicts were read on Thursday, has been in custody since his arrest in July 2010.
How common is it that 3 year olds get hold of guns in the house or car?
Waaaaay more common that you would believe.
This past week, a Milwaukee toddler fatally shot his mother after finding a handgun in the back seat of the car they were riding in. The case drew a lot of national attention given the unusual circumstances: Little kids rarely kill people, intentionally or not.
But this type of thing happens more often than you might think. Since April 20, there have been at least seven instances in which a 1- , 2- or 3-year-old shot themselves or somebody else in the United States:
Last year, a Washington Post analysis found that toddlers were finding guns and shooting people at a rate of about one a week. This year, that pace has accelerated. There have been at least 23 toddler-involved shootings since Jan. 1, compared with 18 over the same period last year.
In the vast majority of cases, the children accidentally shoot themselves. That’s happened 18 times this year, and in nine of those cases the children died of their wounds.
Toddlers have shot other people five times this year. Two of those cases were fatal: this week’s incident in Milwaukee, and that of a 3-year-old Alabama boy who fatally shot his 9-year-old brother in February….Read the Rest Here…