Crossposted at Daily Kos
The story continues below the fold…
Jul 29 2011
Crossposted at Daily Kos
The story continues below the fold…
Jul 27 2011
Crossposted at Daily Kos
Part II of this diary will be posted on Wednesday, July 27th.
In July 1936, the Spanish Army staged a military uprising against the democratically-elected Republican government of Spain, which had been in power for less than six months. The revolt started in the Protectorate of Morocco under the leadership of General Francisco Franco and by the next day, had spread to the mainland. The rebels had badly miscalculated and not anticipated that several army units would side with the government nor expected that the working classes in towns and cities would be quickly mobilized and armed in a popular resistance against the rebellion. In what would become a dress rehearsal for World War II, the struggle that ensued between Republican and Nationalist forces to determine the future direction of the country would rage on for the next three years.
In 1937, Bill Bailey (a son of Irish immigrants to America) wrote a letter from Spain to his mother in New Jersey. Unbeknownst to her and defying a travel embargo imposed by his own government, he had secretly traveled to that country to become one of almost 2,800 American volunteers to eventually fight on the Republican side in a brutal war against the defenders of authoritarian conservatism
Nov 21 2010
House will take up unemployment benefits extension Thursday
By Vicki Needham, The Hill.com — Nov 17, 2010
The House has put a bill on Thursday’s floor schedule that would extend emergency unemployment benefits for three months, according to the schedule released Wednesday night by House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.).
House Ways and Means Chairman Sander Levin (D-Mich.) and Rep. Jim McDermott (D-Wash.), chairman of the Subcommittee on Income Security and Family Support, introduced the bill today that would extend federal benefits — up to 99 weeks in some states for those who have exhausted their state unemployment insurance — through Feb. 28.
The measure is on the suspension calendar and will require two-thirds vote to pass.
A 3 Months extension, on that precarious lifeline, for Millions.
Just a 2/3 Vote needed.
Good luck, folks, looks like you could be “On your Own” — given the priorities of Congress, lately.
Aug 07 2010
The ’99ers’ Share Their Stories
Paul Solman, PBS, MAKING SEN$E — August 6, 2010
I’m a 49 year old single mother of a 15 year old. I was laid off in September of 2008 and my unemployment ended in April of 2010. The way New Jersey calculates your base year made me ineligible for more than 79 weeks.
I apply to just about 50 jobs per week and I went to school and got some medical certifications that are just about useless. Everyone I speak with says “your certifications are great, but we’re really looking for some experience.”
I have been unable to pay my rent since June and expect to be evicted shortly. I have no one in a position to help, and can’t even imagine what it’s going to be like, telling my daughter that we have no home. […] Although I can’t consider suicide, I understand where these people are at!
That was just one of the personal stories out of the MILLIONS of fellow out-of-work Americans,
also known as the 99er’s …
Nov 05 2009
Two days have passed since the 2009 election cycle ended and the second-guessing and arm-chair quarterbacking has quite predictably arrived. Everyone has a theory or a unique explanation and each is in the camp of either imminent demise or nonchalant shrugs. I suppose I lean much more to the latter than to the former. I have no alarmist, chilling words of caution to impart to any Democratic candidate up for re-election or election in a year’s time. When some are questioning whether we should let up on the gas pedal, I advocate strongly for pressing down firmly and keeping it there. We have a right to push our agenda just as strongly as Republicans pushed theirs when they were the majority, and skittish popular opinion will always exist in times where discomfort reigns and its end is not clearly visible. That’s how humans are, particularly when they have been led to believe that good times are a birthright.
Aug 09 2009
Last month I wrote a diary at GOS, Criminalization of the Poor regarding an increasing trend in many urban areas in arresting homeless people for minor infractions in order to get them off the streets and into the penal system. Barbara Ehrenreich has addressed the same issue in an op-ed in today’s NYT with Is It Now a Crime to Be Poor?
Ehrenreich raises the point that, “I’d be content with a consensus that, if we can’t afford to truly help the poor, neither can we afford to go on tormenting them.” It seems very clear now that even if the nation’s economy is reaching a plateau in certain sectors, it will be a long and painful road for many in finding their own equilibrium or comfort zone with the basics of employment, shelter and life’s other necessities. We as a nation must make sure that we do not become increasingly authoritarian with those who have the least among us. We should avoid turning our safety nets into dragnets.
Jul 27 2009
crossposted from Daily Kos … comments there after the “recent diary list” deadline has passed are also welcome.
Bonddad has YERRD (yet another reclisted Rosenberg diary) up, on the issue of whether the recession is coming to an end, or the sky is falling and we face an unending recession from now through to the visible horizon.
But the Great Depression was not made of a recession that did not end for ten years. It was, indeed, made up of one and a half complete business cycles … the post-Crash Recession, from late 1929 to 1932, the New Deal Recovery, from 1932 to 1937, the Roosevelt Recession of 1937/38, and then the recovery that merged with the start of WWII, which was the government spending program substantial enough to actually bring us back to a full employment macro equilibrium.
So the question of whether or not we face another Depression is not, “will this Recession ever end?” … but rather, “After this recession, what comes next?”
So over the fold, I turn to that, far more urgent, question.
But first, an Action Note: Transportation for America reminds us that its not too late to tell your Congressmen to increase support for clean transportation.
Jul 13 2009
A new study has been released by Lancet, The public health effect of economic crises and alternative policy responses in Europe: an empirical analysis, written by Dr. David Stuckler PhD et. al., which contends that the current economic crisis is having an adverse effect on public health. The findings from their research show that increased unemployment rates correlate to “significant short term increases in premature deaths from intentional violence.” The study also shows that labor market protection through government programs can reverse this terrible trend.
This scope of this study was the European Union nations. A brief google search didn’t reveal any similar recent studies conducted in the US, though there was an informal study conducted by a Doctor from Johns Hopkins, who reported his findings at a “After Peak Oil” Conference in the spring of this year.
More detail below
Jun 26 2009
Writing in the the current print issue of Rolling Stone, journalist Matt Taibbi exposes Goldman Sachs, the “world’s most powerful investment bank”, for the “great vampire squid wrapped around the face of humanity, relentlessly jamming its blood funnel into anything that smells like money” that it truly is.
In “The Great American Bubble Machine”, Taibbi outlines how Goldman Sachs has either influenced, shaped, or simply created five market bubbles since 1929 and how now, the bankers are planning to use the greenhouse gas emissions cap-and-trade scheme as their penultimate bubble.
While I do not agree with some of the conclusions he makes, there is enough in his 9,700 word essay that can make the blood boil.
“The first thing you need to know about Goldman Sachs is that it’s everywhere,” he begins. But, “any attempt to construct a narrative around all the former Goldmanites in influential positions quickly becomes an absurd and pointless exercise, like trying to make a list of everything.”
May 24 2009
In this diary, we address more directly what I’ve mostly skirted around in this New Deal series – something I’m completely unqualified to talk about. That being race relations in the South. I know it’s a cheap shot to give a diary this potentially misleading title, but I couldn’t resist. STFU stands for Southern Tenant Farmers Union, which organization this diary will come around to after some introduction.
Delta Cooperative Farm, Hillhouse, Mississippi, July 4, 1936
(Dorothea Lange for the Resettlement Administration)
STFU was an important progressive organization in its day. I’ve come across the argument that it was a key precursor to the Civil Rights Movement of the 50s and 60s. There’s probably something to that.
Feb 03 2009
This is a followup to my diary on Post Office Murals in the New Deal.
Lewis Hine was a great photographer, and also an intrepid social activist. Amongst his most famous works are pictures of child laborers in the early part of the 20th century, for the National Child Labor Committee. The black and white slides with this music are mostly all by Hine.
Cross-posted from Daily Kos
Nov 18 2008
Remember when you were little and your grandparents told you all those quaint stories about banks failing, crops failing, and governments failing? That seemed like such a long time ago, until recently, when comparisons to the Great Depression suddenly seemed plausible. My grandparents always thought we had it too easy since we never had to live through a Great Depression. They sure would be proud of us now!
This takes me back too: a visitor to Yellowstone National Park was diagnosed with bubonic plague in August. Wyoming doesn’t seem to be in any danger of losing one-third of its population the way Europe did in the 1300’s. But this is thought to be the sixth case of bubonic plague in Wyoming since 1978. A doctor with the Wyoming Department of Health suggests “avoiding areas where a large number of unexplained rodent deaths have been observed” to keep yourself healthy. That’s probably good advice for lots of reasons.
But now, follow me back to those romantic days of yesteryear, when the gentle ocean waves were frolicked upon by . . . pirates. Sometime last weekend pirates seized an oil tanker off the coast of Kenya, and it’s currently anchored off Somalia. This wasn’t a few scurvy dogs trying to steal some rum either. The ship, the Sirius Star, is a Saudi supertanker with $100 million of oil on board, and is the largest ship ever taken by pirates. Even Blackbeard himself never took a ship that large.