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The Citizen Science of Climate Change: We Are Not Bystanders

Caren Cooper
Public Library of Science
One overlooked aspect of the response to Hurricane Sandy can give us reason for optimism. The backbone of the knowledge presented in scientists' Draft Climate Assessment Report arises from efforts of unsung (and unwitting) heroes: people who collect weather data. The coordinated, cross-generational, collective nature of the public data-collection efforts reveals an unexploited strength in our society.

Oscars: Real History Behind the Film 'No'

Peter Kornbluh
National Security Archive
Formerly top secret records that provide new details about the "Campaign of the NO" in Chile–the dynamic political movement that eventually led to Pinochet's loss of the presidency. Like "Zero Dark Thirty," "Argo" and "Lincoln," which also examine historical events, "NO" has been criticized for misrepresenting, and omitting, key elements of the history it depicts.

The Republican Party Is Devouring Itself - Good

Carl Bloice
Black Commentator
What’s not to be happy about the travails of an organization that for decades has had a “southern strategy” of taking advantage of racial intolerance? Of seeking political advantage by demagogically targeting women and men who have crossed the southern border seeking work? Of stirring homophobia in an effort to divide and conquer?

New robots in the workplace: Job creators or job terminators?

Cecilia Kang
Washington Post
Today’s robots can do far more than their primitive, single-task ancestors. And there is a broad debate among economists, labor experts and companies over whether the trend will add good-paying jobs to the economy by helping firms run more efficiently or simply leave human workers out in the cold.

Hugo Chávez Kept his Promise to the People of Venezuela, and to Latin America

Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, Oscar Guardiola-Rivera
The late Venezuelan president's Bolívarian revolution has been crucial to a wider Latin American philosophy - "History will affirm, justifiably, the role Hugo Chávez played in the integration of Latin America, and the significance of his 14-year presidency to the poor people of Venezuela" former Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva

Home Is Where the Fight Is

Alexandra Bradbury
Labor Notes
You don't have to look far to see the connection between workplace and housing struggles. People lose their homes or get evicted from rentals because of unemployment, underemployment, low wages, or health care bills. Organizing works: activists consistently force the banks and mortgage lenders to back off specific homes.

Making Tax Fair Would Guarantee Social Security for Future Generations

Ellen Dannin, Truthout Op-Ed
Truthout
Today, some people believe that Social Security will not be there for them even though there are equitable solutions that will fully fund Social Security for the foreseeable future. In planning for the future of Social Security, Social Security is not a private opt-in or -out choice like the decision to fund an IRA. Instead, for decades, it has involved employees and employers providing secure retirement benefits generation after generation.

Future of Unions: New Models of Worker Representation

Jackie Tortora
AFL-CIO Now
The AFL-CIO, along with its affiliate unions, community partners and allies, are embarking on a deep evaluation of the future for working people and the labor movement and exploring innovations for the future of worker organizing. "The basic system of worker representation is failing to meet the needs of America’s working men and women by every critical measure," said AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka.

Tidbits - March 7, 2013

Published by Portside
No Backdoor to Iran War - sign the petition; Reader Comments on Labor's Turnaround; Keystone XL Pipeline; Happy Birthday, Dear Income Tax; Cutting the Military Budget and Palestinian Prisoners; Bradley Manning; labor cartoons; Portside's new email format. Announcements - Vieques Forum (New York); LaborArts Celebrates Women's History Month (online); Rachel Corrie - Ten Years After her Murder (actions around the world). Phillip Bonosky Presente!

Arkansas Adopts a Ban on Abortions After 12 Weeks

By Erik Eckholm
New York Times
Arkansas adopted what is by far the country’s most restrictive ban on abortion on Wednesday — at 12 weeks of pregnancy, when a fetal heartbeat can typically be detected by abdominal ultrasound.

McDonald's Guest Workers Stage Surprise Strike

By Josh Eidelson
The Nation
Alleging unpaid wages and repeated retaliation, McDonald’s workers in central Pennsylvania launched a surprise strike at 11 this morning. The strikers are student guest workers from Latin America and Asia, brought to the United States under the controversial J-1 cultural exchange visa program. Their employer is one of the thousands of McDonald’s franchisees with whom the company contracts to run its ubiquitous stores.

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