A Touch of Class: Knowing Our Place on the Social Ladder

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Steven Mikulan: The heady optimism that has traditionally led many Americans to believe we’re doing better than we actually are – a mirage consensus fed by television shows and movies featuring families who never seem to worry about money or employment – is eroding.

What’s Really at Stake

"Detroit" Linh Dinh

Robert Reich: But before the hostilities start again and we all get lost in puerile politics and petty tactics, it’s useful to consider what’s really at stake for our economy and democracy.

Manufacturing Illusions:

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Robert Reich: Suddenly, manufacturing is back – at least on the election trail. But don’t be fooled. The real issue isn’t how to get manufacturing back. It’s how to get good jobs and good wages back. They aren’t at all the same thing.

Unemployment: Shadows and Reality

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Kathleen Peine: The unemployment report came out recently, and Punxatawny Phil saw a service sector job — that means six more years of growth. Or something like that. It’s all very complicated.

A Government Overwhelmed by Corporate Money

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Robert Reich: American business won’t and can’t lead the way to more and better jobs in the United States. First, the private sector is increasingly global, with less and less stake in America. Second, it’s driven by the necessity of creating profits, not better jobs.

Holiday Pall: Joblessness Crisis Intensifies

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Carl Bloice: The average period of unemployment now exceeds 26 weeks, well above the previous peak in July 1983 of just 21.2 weeks. This is critical because the longer that people of any age are out of work, the less likely they are to find another job.

Workers and Environmentalists Unite!

Shamus Cooke: It should be painfully clear to even the most reality-blind politicians that the private sector has no interest in creating jobs; they are quite content sitting on their mountains of cash until wages fall low enough — due to massive unemployment — for them to hire more labor.

The Right to a Job

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Herb Engstrom: At this time of TEA Party hysteria, Fox News mendacity, and GOP hypocrisy a government guarantee of universal employment might seem like a radical idea, although it seemed not to be so to Franklin Roosevelt.

The Truth About the American Economy

Robert Reich: As we should have learned from the Great Prosperity — the 30 years after World War II when America grew because most Americans shared in the nation’s prosperity — we cannot have a growing and vibrant economy without a growing and vibrant middle class.

Operation Full Disclosure

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U.S. Tour of Duty, ICUJP and Antiwar.com present Operation Full Disclosure, a counteroffensive in response to the war on whistleblowers Mediterranean lunch and discussion with DAVID SWANSON

California GOP Targets Workers

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Caitlin Vega: In these times of unprecedented income inequality, all the Republicans want is to cut worker pay and protections and reward corporations, even if they break the law. It’s taking from those who have the least and giving to those with the most.

War and Workers

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Lydia Howell: Whether it’s debt-ridden college graduates working as baristas or small town youth with only fast-food and Wal-Mart as post-high school career options, high unemployment keeps a volunteer military ranks full.

The Real News on Jobs

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Robert Reich: Conservative economists have it wrong. The underlying problem isn’t that so many Americans have priced themselves out of the global/high-tech labor market. It’s that they’re getting a smaller and smaller share of the pie.

Behind the Kitchen Door

FOC-LA Staff

Diane Lefer: A comment last week on an LA Times blog argued that “working in a restaurant is not supposed to provide a ‘living wage’. It’s a job that teenagers and students use to get started in life.” Not so according to ROC-LA co-coordinator Cathy Dang who reported that nationwide, people tend to stay in the industry for a lifetime.

Meg Whitman, Job Killer

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Craig Williams: The countless ads by Whitman in the current California gubernatorial race lead most people to believe that she’s been creating lots of jobs. But when you take a close look at what her company EBAY actually does, on balance she may well be the jobs killer.

The Struggle for a Workers’ Recovery

Shamus Cooke: The massive One Nation demonstration in Washington, D.C. proved that unions and other progressive groups can unite under a set of demands. But uniting for one demonstration is not enough.