Why the National Labor Relations Act Is Weak

Why the National Labor Relations Act Is Weak feature image
April 2, 2013
Some argue that the National Labor Relations Act has always been a fatally flawed law that was incapable of keeping its promises of promoting employees' rights to form and join unions and to provide mutual aid and support to one another. But is that true?
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Top Cop Kelly: Use Stop-and-Frisk

 Use Stop-and-Frisk  feature image
April 2, 2013
"[Kelly] stated that he targeted and focused on [black and Latino people] because he wanted to instill fear in them that every time that they left their homes they could be targeted by police."
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Labor Law Loses Its Watchdog

Labor Law Loses Its Watchdog feature image
April 1, 2013
Employers are waking up to the fact that they are no longer required to follow the NLRB’s orders. Because of the Canning decision, Rhinehart explains, any employer can now go to a federal appeals court and be granted an indefinite delay in enforcement of any NLRB action taken in the last 14 months.
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The Methane Beneath Our Feet

The Methane Beneath Our Feet feature image
April 1, 2013
Gas Leakages beneath your feet - these leaks challenge some of the basic assumptions of current US energy policy, which has aggressively endorsed natural gas as a “clean” and climate-friendly alternative to oil and coal.
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Why We Tax: A Timely Reminder for Tax Day

 A Timely Reminder for Tax Day feature image
April 1, 2013
Media darling Rand Paul is doing his best to end progressive taxation in America. Randolph Paul, over a half-century ago, helped make progressive taxation a prime building block for America’s middle class golden age. To stop politicos like Rand, we need to remember insightful advocates like Randolph.
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Syria: A Multi-Sided Chess Match

 A Multi-Sided Chess Match feature image
April 1, 2013
In some ways the Syrian civil war resembles a proxy chess match between supporters of the Bashar al-Assad regime— Iran, Iraq, Russia and China—and its opponents— Turkey, the oil monarchies, the U.S., Britain and France. But the current conflict only resembles chess if the game is played with multiple sides, backstabbing allies, and conflicting agendas.
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Cruel and Unusual Punishment: Three Strikes

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April 1, 2013
Despite the passage in late 2012 of a new state ballot initiative that prevents California from ever again giving out life sentences to anyone whose "third strike" is not a serious crime, thousands of people – the overwhelming majority of them poor and nonwhite – remain imprisoned for a variety of offenses so absurd that any list of the unluckiest offenders reads like a macabre joke, a surrealistic comedy routine.
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Undermining Economic Mobility in America

Undermining Economic Mobility in America feature image
March 31, 2013
A host of indicators show that the middle class is struggling-and worse, shrinking-and that upward mobility is elusive for many Americans. Meanwhile, evidence abounds that the U.S. political system is increasingly dominated by wealthy interests . . . What is less understood, though, is the interplay between these two problems-the way that a tilting of political life toward business and the wealthy has served to undermine economic mobility.
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Antibiotic Resistance: Livestock to Humans

 Livestock to Humans feature image
March 31, 2013
If the analysis is correct, then it represents several kinds of potential trouble. First, it reinforces the argument for animal-to-human transmission of resistant bacteria. Second, it emphasizes that such bacteria can be picked up and transmitted even by animals that are not routinely receiving antibiotics . . . And third, it raises the question of how much more resistant bacterial traffic is out there that we are not detecting.
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Food for Peace or Food for Profit?

Food for Peace or Food for Profit?  feature image
March 31, 2013
Food for Peace ends up looking a lot more like Food for Profit. The letter ends with one final truth, declaring that food aid programs are "some of our most effective, lowest-cost national security tools." By handicapping local food markets across the world, food aid keeps poor countries poor and compliant, and provides US-based companies with dependable markets for the dumping of surplus food commodities.
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Pages

Portside Culture

We Love to Be Lied To: On ‘Bunk’ by Kevin Young

Nick Ripatrazone
The Millions
Kevin Young is a prolific and highly regarded poet, recently appointed the poetry editor of The New Yorker. He is the first African American to hold that post. His new book looks at such fakery as fake news.

Palestinian -Themed Films Draw Plaudits

Bill Meyer
There were three exceptionable and rewarding Palestinian themed films at the Toronto Interrnational Film Festival this year, and Ziad Doueiri’s The Insult has been selected to represent his home country of Lebanon at the Oscars. A more timely film could not have been made and selected, seeing that this film addresses most every area of conflict possible.

The Sad, Sexist Past of Bengali Cuisine

Mayukh Sen
Food 52
Party line suggested that widowhood made a woman’s sex drive fickle and vulnerable. A woman’s libido was a site of such agita that she couldn’t be trusted to keep it quiet, and so her body needed to be governed. The alienation imposed upon high-caste, Hindu Bengali women was meant to act as a hormonal suppressant, silencing the desire more dangerous than hunger for fish or meat: sex.

Anna Mae

Marsha de la O
Antidote for Night
Marsha de la O, a southern California poet, depicts most tenderly the hard wages of environmental pollution.

Trump's Itchy, Twitchy Finger

Scott McLemee
Inside Higher Ed
Focusing mainly on Trump's first year in office, the authors emphasize what they call a pattern of systematic reaction, where growing voter frustration regularly drives each party in and out of control. Trump arrived with scant political capital, amassed little and appears to have no strategic competence going forward. While the authors believe Trump can develop one, the essayist faults the authors for offering nothing but wishfulness to back up the assumption.

Yanis Varoufakis’s Doomed Fight Against Austerity

Emmett Rensin
The New Republic
This volume is an insider's account of Greece's recent struggle to preserve the general welfare of its people in the fact of the belt-tighening demands of the managers of the international financial system. Reviewer Rensin offers an assessment.

Portside Labor

Number of Women, Minorities in Labor Leadership Called Dismal

Jaclyn Diaz
Bloomberg Law/ Daily Labor Report
Leaders must also know when it’s time for a new person to take the helm. To keep new blood flowing through the labor movement, older leaders have to make room for their successors, RoseAnn DeMoro, executive director of National Nurses United, said. “You have to get out of the way. You can’t just talk about it,” she said. “If you’re a leader, a strong leader, you step down and open that up to someone you believe reflects where this union needs to be.”

50 Years On, Steinbeck’s Classic Still Packs a Punch

Barry Healy
Green Left Weekly
This year marks the 50th anniversary of John Steinbeck’s great mythic novel of alienation under US capitalism, Of Mice and Men. The story is of lonesome labourers, reeling from the Great Depression, wandering from farm to farm seeking respite from their endless oppression.

Iowa Workers Defy Attempt to Weaken Their Unions

Bill Knight
Pekin Daily Times
Under a new anti-union law, public-sector unions must re-certify each time they’re scheduled to bargain new contracts, every two or three years. Right-wing backers of the law hoped it would weaken unions by forcing them to devote time and resources to the recertification process and lead workers to drop their membership. But the members of the state's 468 union locals voted overwhelmingly to stick with their union.

Friday Nite Videos

Posted by Portside on November 17, 2017

One year after the presidential election, John Oliver discusses what we've learned so far and enlists our catheter cowboy to teach Donald Trump what he hasn't.

Posted by Portside on November 17, 2017

"Down on Me" is a traditional freedom song from the 1920s or earlier that became popular following its remake 50 years ago (1967) by Janis Joplin and Big Brother and the Holding Company. (Wikipedia)

Posted by Portside on November 17, 2017

Charles Dickens connected Scrooge, greed and redemption to Christmas in a book that changed the holiday forever.
Posted by Portside on November 17, 2017

The Paradise Papers exposed an unseen world of offshore accounts, hidden money and financial maneuvering at the highest levels of politics, business and finance.

Posted by Portside on November 17, 2017

The Senate holds a hearing to debate President Trump's power to use nuclear weapons without congressional approval.

Posted by Portside on November 10, 2017

Is there one person who can save us from Donald Trump. Schneider-man, maybe? Eric Schneiderman doesn't think so.

Posted by Portside on November 10, 2017

Music, where cultures meet and perform mad dances. Arabic, Spanish and Russian influences power this mashup.