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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.

Tell Newt His Plan to Fire Unionized Janitors and Hire Poor Kids is Nuts

We noted yesterday that Newt Gingrich wants “get rid of unionized janitors” and hire poor kids to clean the schools in low-income neighborhoods. Today AFSCME says it’s time to tell Gingrich that his ”model” to lift kids out of poverty is outrageous dangerous and downright hogwash.

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Republicans on Super Committee Stood with the Bush Tax Cuts for the 1%

This evening’s announcement that the Super Committee on the federal deficit was unable to reach an agreement shows that the Republicans on the committee “have once again shown that if they can’t get their way, they take their marbles and go home,” says AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka.

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Hey, Fox—Wake UP! Here Are Demands of the 99%

While most of us know what the goal is of the Occupy Wall Street movement—economic justice for the 99 percent and all that it entails—pontificators from Fox News and other right-wingers derisively dismiss it.

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Gingrich: Put Poor Kids to Work Cleaning Schools

Even for Newt Gingrich, this is bizarre.

The Republican presidential candidate says child labor laws are “stupid.” But that’s just the start. He says schools should “get rid of unionized janitors” and hire low-income kids to clean the schools. He also says that age nine is a good time to get a job.

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Flight Attendants Offer Holiday Travel Tips

You’ve made it through the parking lot, baggage check, security and are finally ready—somewhat frazzled but ready—to board your plane for your long-awaited holiday trip. The Flight Attendants-CWA (AFA-CWA) have some tips for you that will help ensure you and your family travel safely and securely and ease the strain on passengers, children and fellow travelers.

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Calm Down, It’s Just a Poster

You may recall the hysterical hoopla from the business world this summer when the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) issued an even-handed, simple and straight rule that says employers must display an 11-by-17-inch poster (available at no cost from the NLRB) informing workers of their rights under the National Labor Relations Act. The placard tells workers about their right to join a union and their right not to join a union.

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Dangerous Balanced Budget Amendment Fails in House

The U.S. House this afternoon voted down, by a 261-165 vote, a balanced budget amendment that its supporters hoped would impose sweeping and permanent austerity upon the United States with massive budget cuts. It needed a two-thirds majority to pass. Click here for more from Think Progress and here for our recent coverage.

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Working America Offers Political ‘Turkey Talk Tips’ for a Smooth Thanksgiving

Conventional wisdom says don’t talk politics at big family gatherings, especially with Uncle Earl. But our friends at Working America are offering a unique guide on how to talk about today’s biggest political topic, the Occupy Wall Street/99 Percent movement, without sending Uncle Earl into one of his legendary fits.

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Tell Democrats on Super Committee: Stand with the 99%

All six of the Republicans on the so-called Super Committee have proposed cutting hundreds of billions of dollars in Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid benefits that America’s working families depend on—while keeping Bush’s tax rates for the richest Americans, including the top 1 percent.

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Tens of Thousands Rally Nationwide for Bridge Repair, Job Creation

From actions drawing thousands in major cities to those with dozens in smaller towns, working families, jobless workers, community members and Occupy activists across the nation yesterday marched and rallied at dozens of bridges in desperate need of repair and called on Congress put millions of Americans back to work rebuilding the nation’s crumbling bridges and roads.

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