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Showing blog posts by Mike Hall

Mike Hall

I’m a former West Virginia newspaper reporter, staff writer for the United Mine Workers Journal and managing editor of the Seafarers Log. I came to the AFL- CIO in 1989 and have written for several federation publications, focusing on legislation and politics, especially grassroots mobilization and workplace safety. When my collar was still blue, I carried union cards from the Oil, Chemical and Atomic Workers, American Flint Glass Workers and Teamsters for jobs in a chemical plant, a mining equipment manufacturing plant and a warehouse. I’ve also worked as roadie for a small-time country-rock band, sold my blood plasma and played an occasional game of poker to help pay the rent. You may have seen me at one of several hundred Grateful Dead shows. I was the one with longhair and the tie-dye. Still have the shirts, lost the hair.

ALEC Has Deep Ties, Big Money in Wisconsin Lawmakers and Governor

Illustration by WatchingFrogsBoil/flickr

A new report reveals the “extraordinary influence” the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) has had in the Wisconsin legislature during the past 16 months—the same 16 months since Gov. Scott Walker (R) took power. The Center for Media and Democracy (CMD), which released the report, says ALEC's influence:

undermines the rights of Wisconsin families while advancing the agenda of huge corporations.

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House Republicans Rebuff Nuclear Worker Safety

House Republicans have blocked efforts to maintain strong workplace health safety rules for workers at the nation’s nuclear weapons facilities. Republicans leaders rejected even a vote on an amendment to the Defense Authorization bill that would have preserved the current standards.They are pushing an extreme proposal to deregulate worker safety and allow employer self–regulation and self-oversight.

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Robin Hood, Nurses Set to Rally in Chicago

Tomorrow in Chicago, nurses from across the United States and U.S. and global activists will rally and call on world leaders to adopt a Robin Hood tax on financial speculation by banks and financial institution to create jobs and rebuild the economy that Wall Street broke. The Day of Action is sponsored by National Nurses United (NNU).

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Behind Locked Capitol Doors, Missouri Republicans Honor Limbaugh

Illustration by Donkey/Hotey, Flickr

In an almost clandestine operation at the state Capitol in Jefferson City, Missouri Republicans this week inducted radio hate-talk host Rush Limbaugh into the Hall of Famous Missourians. The ceremony was closed to the public and, behind closed doors, guarded by Missouri Highway Patrol officers.

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Reuther Film, ‘Brothers on the Line,’ Winning Praise

The documentary “Brothers on the Line,” which chronicles the lives of UAW leader Walter Reuther and his brothers, Roy and Victor—from the Great Depression to the Great Society, is picking up awards and packing theaters in special screenings around the nation. Take a look at this new trailer. 

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Senate Passes Ex-Im Bank Reauthorization

The U.S. Senate yesterday approved (78-20) legislation to reauthorize the Export-Import Bank through 2014. Last week, the House passed (330-90) the same bill and it now goes to the White House for President Obama’s signature.

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Wages for Young College Grads Fall

Wages for Young College Grads Fall

Most recent young college graduates are carrying a heavy debt load for their education, and they face a harder time paying it off because their wages have plummeted as well—part of a decade-long decline, according to a new Economic Snapshot from the Economic Policy Institute (EPI).

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Global Petition Demands Hyatt Rehire Fired Housekeepers

Last October, the Hyatt Regency in Santa Clara, Calif., fired two sisters with 30 years of combined experience after they objected to the posting of demeaning pictures of housekeepers in bikinis on a company bulletin board. Yesterday, Hyatt workers, clergy, and local elected officials delivered nearly 100,000 petition signatures from around the world to the hotel’s general manager condemning the hotel’s dismissal of sisters Martha and Lorena Reyes and calling for their reinstatement with full back pay.

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Arizona Appraisers Affiliate with OPEIU’s Appraisers Guild

The Coalition of Arizona Appraisers (CoAA) has voted to affiliate with the American Guild of Appraisers (AGA), a guild of the Office and Professional Employees (OPEIU).

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Older Workers Have Highest Long-Term Jobless Rate

Older workers who lose their jobs have the highest rate of long-term unemployment compared to any other age group. In 2011, more than half of jobless workers, ages 50 years and older, were out of work for more than six months. The trend continues this year. Christine Owens, executive director of the National Employment Law Project (NELP), told the Senate Special Committee on Aging this afternoon:

The prospects are dim for older workers who lose their jobs.

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