Jack Saturday

Saturday, June 18, 2005

Some Highlighted Selections Mostly From The New York Times
From Spring, 2005

(specific reference on request)

…complaining that the organization was doing far too little to reverse labor's decline.

...much more organizing is needed

joblessness looming large as an issue

Germany cannot generate new jobs.
...has not found a way to encourage consumer spending, a critical factor for reviving its moribund domestic economy.

They make it easier for employers to hire temporary workers and create entry-level jobs for people who have been out of work. But they do not attack the job-protection rules that make it hard to lay off workers.

...a situation much less favorable to workers than that of the 1990's. A lower fraction of the adult population is employed; the average duration of unemployment - a rough indicator of how long it takes laid-off workers to find new jobs - is much higher than it was in the 1990's

...sluggish job creation

those whose standard of living depends on wages, not capital gains - in other words, the vast majority of Americans - aren't feeling particularly prosperous.

labor costs have been falling, because wages are growing less than productivity.

wages for the average worker fell for the year

Most economists dismiss as overblown the widespread fear that the number of jobs will shrink

...soaring health insurance costs that leave less money for raises

Real wages for these workers are now lower, on average, than two years ago.

It's like their wages are in a severe coma

These factors aren't going to go away… The competitive pressures for companies to hold the line on labor costs are intense… the alternatives they have - technological substitution and offshoring labor - are growing."

for the bottom 95 percent of workers, after-inflation wages were flat or down in 2004, but for the top 5 percent, wages rose by an average of 1 percent, with some gaining much more.

The upper-income group enjoyed strong pay increases largely because of bonuses, stock options and other inducements… robust demand in certain fields, like law and investment banking.
Since 2001, when the recovery began, productivity growth has averaged 4.1 percent a year; overall compensation - wages and benefits - has risen about one-third as fast,

The question is not whether corporations are seeking higher profits; the question is how come they're getting them to such a degree at the expense of compensation

Safeway insisted that it needed to hold down costs to compete with Wal-Mart…Her take-home pay will fall $20 a week

Wal-Mart has a lot to do with this. They're setting the model

millions of skilled Chinese, Indian and other Asian workers entering the global labor

what we're seeing now: abysmal growth in real wages

Mr. Wolfson, a physical therapist [!] who suffers chronic knee, hip and shoulder pain, was not fearing the adverse effects of the medication so much as life without it.

stark warnings about heart risks… more than 12 similar drugs…

He's tried everything," said Mr. Lo. "He tried acupuncture, massage tables and aspirin.

more than doubled the risk of heart attacks and strokes

In high doses, Tylenol can damage the liver, and aspirin can hurt the stomach, though it can be good for the heart

painkiller of choice… It's a long season, and we need to use painkillers

In 6 of the last 12 months, job creation has not been strong enough to absorb the growth of the work force.

...wages failed to outpace price increases, as has happened every month since last May.

...the Bush administration has succeeded in delivering decent economic growth, but has failed to ensure that the benefits of growth are widely shared

Report on Social Security for Canada in 1943. … It advocated a social minimum and called for the eradication of poverty

I would argue that society can build institutions which embody and reinforce all those values, and moreover, it is a matter of obligation at law owing to a duty which goes to the core of the protection and promotion of human dignity.

There is nothing to fear from the idea of socio-economic rights as real, enforceable, human rights on equal footing with all other human rights,

There will always be a place for charity, but charitable responses are not an effective, principled or sustainable substitute for enforceable human rights guarantees.

...the numbers of teenagers seeking jobs in the city have thinned at a far faster rate than in the rest of the country in the last 15 years, coinciding with a period of explosive growth in the immigrant population in the city.

The picture is most stark for young men, who have a much harder time finding work than their female counterparts, reflecting the city's shift over the last two decades from an economy that makes goods to one that provides services. Service jobs, historically, have been dominated by women.

"Every time I go to apply for a job," said Mr. Espaillat, a high school senior who is unemployed but has worked as a library helper and a tutor, "I only see young attractive females there, and while they say they are looking for help, they never call me. No young male can get a job in this city unless you're an immigrant who is willing to work all day for low pay."
immigrants make up 43 percent of its labor force.

Immigrants have a strong presence in industries that also tend to draw first-time workers. They make up 64 percent of those employed in the city's manufacturing industries, the department says, and 54 percent of workers in the food and accommodation businesses….



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