Archive

Archive for the ‘news’ Category

“Mine Gas Escapes from Limbaugh‏”

April 19th, 2010 No comments

Rush Limbaugh is at it again…  I typically ignore everything from Rush Limbaugh as I know his credibility is none. The guy I take lunch with everyday loves to make me listen to the Rush Limbaugh show which does nothing but get my blood boiling.  Sure I could tune out the radio as we drive – but what would be the fun in that?  It is nice to hear extremist sometimes just to keep myself in check and down to reality.  But today I got an e-mail from the AFL-CIO, one of the many e-mail list I subscribe too, talking about the Mine Tragedy in West Virginia.

The article from the AFL-CIO Blog outlined how Rush Limbaugh was once again wrong.  Everyone knows that the Massey Energy Big Branch mine was not union.  Just read the blog post from the AFL-CIO and you will see.

Limbaugh Lies About Big Branch Mine: No, Rush, It Wasn’t Union

by Mike Hall, Apr 16, 2010

It was Sen. Al Franken (D- Minn.) in his previous incarnation as an author and comedian who called Rush Limbaugh “A big fat liar.” Well, others can address the first part, but Limbaugh himself has again offered solid evidence about the liar part.

Last week, Limbaugh lambasted the Mine Workers (UMWA) for not protecting their members who, he claimed worked at the Upper Big Branch mine in Raleigh County, W.Va., where 29 coal miners were killed when the Massey Energy Co. mine exploded.

Of course as we all know, and has been widely reported in mainstream media–and even on  Fox News–Upper Big Branch was non-union coal mine. While he never acknowledged his mistake, at least he piped down for a few days.

But yesterday, with a full bag of gas at the ready, Rush claimed he had irrefutable facts to back him up, that UMWA did certainly represent the miners at Upper Big Branch. He said the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) had ordered Massey to hire union coal miners.

There were union workers at this mine…You people, it’s been 21 years. At some point you are going to learn: If you go up against me on a challenge of fact, you are going to be wrong. It’s just that simple.

Let UMWA President Cecil Roberts throw the challenge flag on this one.

Yesterday, Rush said on his program, “But in 2009, the [NLRB] agreed with the decision that Massey Energy rehire 85 coal miners who said they had been discriminated against because they were union members. So there were union workers there. So the United Mine Workers should have been overseeing their safety, the United Mine Workers of America.”

Wrong again, Rush. The decision you refer to was AT ANOTHER MINE! And, Massey is appealing that decision, meaning the workers who were discriminated against at the Cannelton mine (in another county from the Upper Big Branch mine) have yet to reclaim their rightful jobs as the NLRB ordered.

Those are the facts. Who’s wrong now, Rush?

While Limbaugh may have lost a few pounds, that liar part still fits quite snuggly.

Categories: jobs, news, republican Tags: , , ,

Langford Convicted: What Next for Birmingham?

October 29th, 2009 No comments
Larry Langford, Mayor of Birmingham, Alabama, ...
Image via Wikipedia

If you haven’t heard Larry Langford, Birmingham, Ala., Mayor, Convicted on 60 counts of Bribery and Corruption.  These charges alone can earn him 805 years in federal Prison not including the money he will have to return to the people of Jefferson County. Now that Langford is convicted felon he can not serve as Mayor of Birmingham City…

What happens to the Mayor’s office?

The president of the City Council takes over until a special election can be convened and certified.  Which has to be conducted within a certain period of time (perhaps 90 days) where the new mayor is chosen.

What does this mean for Birmingham?

Birmingham City Council President Carole Smitherman became Mayor after the first guilty conviction was announced today in Tuscaloosa, AL and Valerie Abbot Councilor Pro Tempore stepped up into the Council President position.  The problem with that a new city council will be sworn in the later part of November following an early October vote unseating a few current members and filling a couple vacant seats.

After the oath of office for the new and old members under the current Charter of the City of Birmingham’s Council President must be elected.  There is no guarantee that Mayor Carole Smitherman will be re-elected council president and in turn the newly elected council President would take the office of mayor until it can be filled by the special election. It is possible that the City of Birmingham have a 3 mayors in the span of only about 2 and a half months.

Analysis

Chaos in the making.  At this pivotal point in time a strong leader is needed not the in fighting and bickering of city officials.  Carole Smittherman has been much of the root of the in fighting and has a dwindling popularity rating with the city of Birmingham as she could have been unseated by an opponent in early October herself.  The likely hood of her winning the council president seat again is unlikely.  Interim governments or leaders are at best controlled chaos to add unpopular political figures in the mix is likely yo make matters worse.

Norma Rae Dead at age 60

September 14th, 2009 2 comments

Crystal Lee Sutton the inspiration of Sally Field’s Character in a 1979 movie Norma Rae has died at age 68.  It is reported that Sutton died from brain cancer in the Burlington Hospice Home in Burlington, North Carolina.

According to Sutton herself in an article from Facing South the health insurer delayed treatment.

Read the Facing South article for more information about her treatment and history as a labor activist.

Real ‘Norma Rae’ dies of cancer after insurer delayed treatment

The North Carolina union organizer who was the inspiration for the movie “Norma Rae” died on Friday of brain cancer after a battle with her insurance company, which delayed her treatment. She was 68.

Crystal Lee Sutton, formerly Crystal Lee Jordan, was fired from her job folding towels at the J.P. Stevens textile plant in her hometown of Roanoke Rapids, N.C. for trying to organize a union in the early 1970s. Her last action at the plant — writing the word “UNION” on a piece of cardboard and standing on her work table, leading her co-workers to turn off their machines in solidarity — was memorialized in the 1979 film by actress Sally Field. The police physically removed Sutton from the plant for her action.

But her efforts ultimately succeeded, as the Amalgamated Clothing Workers won the right to represent the plant’s employees on Aug. 28, 1974. Sutton later became a paid organizer for the union, which through a series of mergers became part of UNITE HERE before splitting off this year to form Workers United, which is affiliated with the Service Employees International Union.

Several years ago, Sutton was diagnosed with meningioma, a type of cancer of the nervous system. While such cancers are typically slow-growing, Sutton’s was not — and she went two months without potentially life-saving medication because her insurance wouldn’t cover it initially. Sutton told the Burlington (N.C.) Times-News last year that the insurer’s behavior was an example of abuse of the working poor:

“How in the world can it take so long to find out [whether they would cover the medicine or not] when it could be a matter of life or death,” she said. “It is almost like, in a way, committing murder.”

Though Sutton eventually received the medication, the cancer had already taken hold. She passed away on Friday, Sept. 11 in a Burlington, N.C. hospice.

“Crystal Lee Sutton was a remarkable woman whose brave struggles have left a lasting impact on this country and without doubt, on me personally,” Field said in a statement released Friday. “Portraying Crystal Lee in ‘Norma Rae,’ however loosely based, not only elevated me as an actress, but as a human being.”

Field won an Oscar, a Golden Globe and the Best Actress award at the Cannes Film Festival for her portrayal of the character based on Sutton. The film in turn was based on the 1975 book “Crystal Lee: A Woman of Inheritance” by New York Times reporter Henry P. “Hank” Leiferman.

Sutton was only 17 when she began working at the J.P. Stevens plant in northeastern North Carolina, where conditions were poor and the pay was low. A Massachusetts-based company that for many years was listed on the Fortune 500, J.P. Stevens is now part of the WestPoint Home conglomerate.

In 1973, Sutton, by then a mother of three, was earning only $2.65 an hour. That same year, Eli Zivkovich, a former coal miner from West Virginia, came to Roanoke Rapids to organize the plant and began working with Sutton, who was fired after she copied a flyer posted by management warning that blacks would run the union. It was that incident which led Sutton to stand up with her “UNION” sign.

“It is not necessary I be remembered as anything, but I would like to be remembered as a woman who deeply cared for the working poor and the poor people of the U.S. and the world,” she said in a newspaper interview last year. “That my family and children and children like mine will have a fair share and equality.”

For more on Sutton’s life and work, visit the website of the Alamance Community College’s Crystal Sutton Collection.

Categories: employment, news Tags: , ,

Kidnapped Boy’s Teeth Pulled With Pliers

August 9th, 2009 No comments

Today I read a story about a little boy (Khidir – now only 8 years old), in Fullajah, Iraq that was tortured by Al Qaeda on a farm.  The boy was taken from his family for two years where he was beaten with a shovel, had both arms broken, a nail driven into his leg, and beaten for fun.  He was treated like slave being forced to pick carrots in the fields.  When I read stories of such inhumanity it makes my blood boil.  The boy’s only fault was being the son of a true patriot – an Iraqi Policeman.

Stories like these do nothing but advance the terrorist agenda…  But acts of inhumanity shouldn’t go untold or unpunished.

Terrorists kidnap, torture boy to bully Iraqi policeman

FALLUJA, Iraq (CNN) — Like many young boys, Khidir loves playing with toy cars and wants to be a policeman like his father when he grows up. But it was his father’s very job that caused the tiny child to suffer the unimaginable.

Khidir, now 8, was kidnapped and held hostage for two years by operatives with al Qaeda in Iraq.
Khidir was just 6 years old when he was savagely ripped away from his family, kidnapped by al Qaeda operatives in Iraq.

“They beat me with a shovel, they pulled my teeth out with pliers, they would go like this and pull it,” said Khidir, now 8, demonstrating with his hands. “And they would make me work on the farm gathering carrots.”

What followed was even more horrific, an ordeal that would last for two years in captivity. Khidir and his father spoke to CNN recently, more than half a year after his rescue by Iraqi police.

“This is where they hammered a nail into my leg and then they pulled it out,” he says, lifting up his pant leg to show a tiny wound.

He says his captors also pulled out each of his tiny fingernails, broke both his arms, and beat him repeatedly on the side of the head with a shovel. He still suffers chronic headaches. He remembers them laughing as they inflicted the pain.

“I would think about my mommy and daddy,” he replies, when asked how he managed to get through the agony. […] Read the full story