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Archive for April, 2015

ComputerWorld magazine reports that Walt Disney Parks and Resorts has laid off hundreds of its high tech employees and replaced them with H1-B workers. Disney shifted its IT operations to a contractor, who hired workers from India, which arrived in the United States via H1-B visas, to displace US citizens at Disney.

This was a cost cutting move, but so-called cost cutting moves are typically income redistribution moves, wherein management cuts jobs, hires a contractor paying H1-B visa workers lesser money, and then passes the savings on to rich shareholders via higher profits, dividends and share prices. Those who lose their jobs are out of luck.

It should be noted that increasing H1-B workers in the United States is US government policy, and it is an income redistribution policy, like trade agreements, hyper immigration, privatization scams, and other schemes used by the rich to redistribute the income of the middle class to themselves.

The Disney lay-off victims claimed H1-B workers displaced hundreds of US workers, many of whom had been given excellent ratings by their employer in the days leading up to their termination. The company claims the lay-off victims numbered only 135.

“Kim Berry, president of the Programmer’s Guild, said that “Congress should protect American workers by mandating that positions can only be filled by H-1B workers when no qualified American – at any wage – can be found to fill the position.”

The use of H-1B workers to displace U.S. workers is getting more attention in Congress. In response to Southern California Edison’s use of foreign labor, 10 U.S. senators recently asked three federal agencies to investigate H-1B use. But one agency, the U.S. Department of Labor, wrote back last week and told the lawmakers that large H-1B using firms “are not prohibited from displacing U.S. workers” as long as they meet certain conditions, such as paying each H-1B worker at least $60,000 a year.”

Check out the link below for the rest of the story.

http://www.computerworld.com/article/2915904/it-outsourcing/fury-rises-at-disney-over-use-of-foreign-workers.html

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According to Vermont Public Radio, US Senator Bernie Sanders will announce his bid for the Democratic nomination for president on Thursday. Sander’s is given little chance of winning the nomination by the corporate press, but there’s a reason why this isn’t so. The senator appeals to Democrats and Republicans on bread and butter issues, and he has a 100 voting score with the National Rifle Association.

Sanders will release a short statement on Thursday and then hold a major campaign kickoff in Vermont several weeks from now.

Sander’s candidacy means the middle class wing of the Democratic Party will challenge the deep pockets of the Wall Street wing of the Party, which is represented by Hilliary Clinton.

“Sanders’ basic message will be that the middle class in America has been decimated in the past two decades while wealthy people and corporations have flourished because the rich have taken over government, and used their control to redistribute income from the 99 to the 1 percent.

His opposition to a proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal (T.P.P.) shows how he plans to frame this key issue of his campaign.

“If you want to understand why the middle class in America is disappearing and why we have more wealth and income inequality in America than we have had since the late 1920s, you have to address the issue of trade,” Sanders said in a phone interview on April 23.

As the longest-serving Independent member of Congress, Sanders has been a vocal critic of the influence that large corporations have on the political process.

“All of the major corporations want to continue with this trade policy. Wall Street wants to continue this trade policy. The drug companies want to continue this trade policy. But organizations representing American workers and the environment do not want to continue the trade policy. They want new trade policies,” he said. Sanders did not point out that Wall Street’s Democratic hopeful Hilliary Clinton also supports these income redistribution policies falsely marketed as free trade treaties, and especially the TPP.

And Sanders says it is imperative that all the Democratic presidential candidates address the issue of trade and income inequality.

“So, I think that Hillary Clinton and every candidate out there should in fact address whether or not they support this T.P.P.,” Sanders said. So expect Hilliary to lie on the issue time and again in public.

In the past few months, Sanders has been actively visiting many of the early presidential primary states. Just last weekend he traveled to South Carolina to address the state Democratic Party and news reports indicate that his economic message drew a lot of support at the state meeting. The grass roots are rallying to Sanders, not to Hilliary.

The corporate propaganda machine gives Sanders little chance of defeating Clinton. However, that’s part of the propaganda ploy they play on the American people. They’ll label the best chance for America’s middle class (Sanders) as having no chance of winning the nomination, and they’ll tell voters not to waste their vote on Bernie. However, Sanders wouldn’t be running if he didn’t have the grass roots support to win.

The reality is that every vote for Hilliary and every vote for a Republican candidate is a vote to continue the political and economic policies that have been destroying the middle class by redistributing their wealth and income to the super rich for the last thirty-four years.

In other words, a vote for Hilliary or any Republican candidate by any member of the 99 percent is a vote to commit financial suicide. It’s a complete waste of your vote. Vote for real hope and change. Vote for Bernie!

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A new congressional study suggests that massive immigration increases in recent decades have hammered middle-class wages. Whether through taking jobs or casting votes, hyper-immigration is revolutionizing the U.S.

We are a nation of immigrants, it is often reflexively said. But it is a little-known fact that our foreign-born population dropped more than 11% in the quarter century after World War II.

Since 1970, however, we have become a nation of hyper-immigration, as the foreign-born among us have exploded from fewer than 10 million to more than 41 million as of 2013 — a staggering 324.5% increase.

If a job cannot be exported, then immigrants are encouraged by business and government leaders to enter the United States to generate greater competition among middle class workers, which lowers wages and benefits. For example, a recent study shows that three out of four high tech workers are unemployed in their areas of expertise, and wages in the high tech sector are the same as during the early 1990s, and yet congressional leaders want to admit more immigrants via the H1-B visa. In this way wages and salaries will continue to stay artificially low, which benefits the 1 percent at the expense of the middle class.

The difference between the old higher wages (what wages should be under normal immigration increases) and the new lower wages with hyper immigration, goes straight into the pockets of the super rich via higher corporate profits, rising dividends and soaring share prices.

The middle class is getting hammered by the loss of millions of jobs that are exported via international agreements falsely marketed as free trade agreements. But the middle and lower classes are also getting hammered by hyper immigration. These two governmental policies are income redistribution scams perpetrated by the leadership of both major political parties and their billionaire and corporate sponsors, such as the Koch Brothers and Warren Buffett.

How badly has immigration and free trade policies been for the middle and lower classes?

“A new analysis from the nonpartisan Congressional Research Service for the Senate Judiciary Committee finds that during this era of free trade and hyper-immigration, incomes of the bottom 90% of Americans flat-lined, then dropped starting in 2000. By comparison, middle-class wages increased between 1945 and 1970.

Last year, Karen Zeigler and Steven Camarota of the Center for Immigration Studies found that, according to federal government data, “since 2000 all of the net gain in the number of working-age (16 to 65) people holding a job has gone to immigrants (legal and illegal).”

In the fourteen plus years since 2000, less than six million net jobs have been created in the United States, and all of them have gone to immigrants. On the other hand, according to the Federal Reserve, 28 million jobs were exported from the USA from 1990 to 2010, and several million more have been exported since 2010.

Salaries, wages and benefits would be going up if the United States had six million less working age immigrants. More significantly, however, US wages would be surging and our tepid economy would be booming if those trade agreements hadn’t been conceived. In both cases, trade agreements and immigration, income and wealth inequality in the USA would not be nearly so significant as it is now.

While so-called international trade agreements are the major cause of the income and wealth inequality of the last thirty-five years, with the 1 percent going from taking 8 percent of all income created in the USA in 1980 to 37 percent today, immigration (legal and illegal) is another, though admittedly lesser, but still significant, culprit in the financial war the super rich are waging against the middle class.

The Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) is the largest income redistribution scam of all time. It is falsely being marketed as a free trade treaty. The Wall Street wing of the Democratic Party, led by President Obama and Wall Street Senator Ron Wyden, have merged with the Wall Street wing of the Republican Party. The TPP will provide incentives for US corporations to ship millions of US jobs overseas, and drive millions of Latin American immigrants illegally into the United States simultaneously, just like NAFTA did.

That’s why the TPP is another income redistribution scam for the 1 percent.

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It’s the hollowing out of the U.S. economy by the super rich as they destroy the middle class, and leave nothing but anti-American economic and political inequality in its wake. The haves are getting more, the have nots are getting less. And the middle class is vanishing.

“Between 2000 and 2013, every single state in the United States saw its share of middle-class families shrink, according to analysis from the Pew Charitable Trusts. In some states like Wisconsin and Ohio, that number fell by more than 5 percentage points; middle-income families now make up less than half of those states’ populations.” The income of the middle class has been redistributed to the 1 percent via free trade treaties, in which middle class jobs are exported to lower wage nations, thanks to Wall Street senators like Ron Wyden, Orrin Hatch and Mitch McConnell, and the difference between the old wages and the new lower wages goes into the pockets of the super rich via higher corporate profits, increased dividends, and soaring share prices.

That means the rich get richer in income and wealth via these income redistribution treaties that are falsely labeled free trade agreements. Income is money coming in, and wealth are things that one owns, like stocks, bonds, and houses.

The 1 percent have seen their share of income grow from 8 percent in 1980 to 21 percent in 2008 to 37 percent in 2015. The US most recent economic expansion is the weakest in job growth and wage increases in US history because the demand for goods and services has been crimped by this massive political campaign to redistribute income from the 99 to the 1 percent, and this is the definition of class warfare. The middle class simply does not have the cash to power the economy like in the old days because the middle class has less of it. The rich have stolen the jobs and cash of the middle class.

It’s not a new narrative but the modern story of inequality goes much deeper than stagnant wage growth. It’s inequality of opportunity as well. It’s something Nobel-prize winning economist Joseph Stiglitz has studied and written about a great deal. You can read more on what he thinks has brought about this inequality in the story below. He’s correct to my point of view on all points, but he doesn’t mention the big culprit, free trade agreements.

Free trade agreements are arguably the biggest factor in the growth of income inequality in the United States.

Check out Stiglitz his argument by clicking of the link below.

http://finance.yahoo.com/news/nobel-prize-winner-stiglitz—three-steps-to-solving-income-inequality-153834471.html

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From GMO Free USA.

Biotech is at it again, trying to discredit someone who speaks out publicly about GMOs and Roundup. The Biotech front group’s smear campaign against Doctor Oz spectacularly backfired as he publicly outed the felons and frauds behind it. Who was behind the letter to discredit Doctor Oz? Read this article to find out more about these unscrupulous “doctors”.

For more on the story, click the following link. https://www.intellihub.com/biotech-front-groups-smear-campaign-against-doctor-oz-spectacularly-backfires-as-he-publicly-outs-the-felons-and-frauds-behind-it/

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Stunningly, on Friday, President Obama falsely accused Democratic opponents of the Trans Pacific Partnership of being “dishonest” and spreading “misinformation” about the largest international income and political power redistribution scam in the history of humankind, which is called the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP). In their opposition, Obama’s opponents are relying on leaked documents from the negotiations, which can be accessed at Wikileaks. That means it’s the president who is lying about the TPP.

On Saturday, Warren and Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) responded with a letter essentially telling Obama to put up or shut up. If the deal is so great, Warren and Brown wrote, the administration should make the full negotiation texts public before Congress votes on a “fast track” bill that would strip the legislative branch of its authority to amend it.

“Members of Congress should be able to discuss the agreement with our constituents and to participate in a robust public debate, instead of being muzzled by classification rules,” Warren and Brown wrote in the letter obtained by The Huffington Post.

“Your Administration has deemed the draft text of the agreement classified and kept it hidden from public view, thereby making it a secret deal,” the letter reads. “It is currently illegal for the press, experts, advocates, or the general public to review the text of this agreement. And while you noted that Members of Congress may ‘walk over … and read the text of the agreement’ — as we have done — you neglected to mention that we are prohibited by law from discussing the specifics of that text in public.”

Warren and Brown appeared particularly miffed at being accused of lying.

“We respectfully suggest that characterizing the assessments of labor unions, journalists, Members of Congress, and others who disagree with your approach to transparency on trade issues as ‘dishonest’ is both untrue and unlikely to serve the best interests of the American people,” the letter reads.

Then they proceeded with a withering attack on the president’s motives for supporting Fast Track Authority. The letter also asked the president to release the text of the TPP so the public can be informed about its contents, and public debate about the merits of the treaty can take place.

See the full letter at

Click to access WarrenBrownTPPLetter.pdf

.

We know from leaked documents that,

* TPP will give incentives for US corporations to export millions of US jobs. The Federal Reserve estimates that 28 million US jobs were exported between 1990 and 2010. Wyden wants to increase this number. Jobs are the biggest US export product. Wyden likes this.

* TPP will increase US income and wealth inequality. The 1 percent have already taken 95 percent of all income growth in the United States since 2009. Currently, the 1 percent are stealing 36+ percent of all income produced in the USA, compared to only 8 percent in 1980. International trade scams and other federal legislation have brought inequality about. For example, when the above jobs were exported, the difference between the old higher US wages and the new lower wages will go straight into the pockets of the 1 percent via higher corporate profits, rising dividends and surging share prices. Wyden is a principle architect of this inequality.

* Those lost jobs will no longer be paying the taxes for our infrastructure, K-12 education, higher education (tuition and fees will go up), social safety nets, schools, fire, police, public transportation, social security taxes, but those lost jobs will push the stock markets higher.

* TPP will effectively eliminate your voting rights on local and state issues since it will unconstitutionally grant investors of the 0.01 percent special privileges to challenge labeling and health and safety local laws and regulations of the 99 percent, which most people call voter suppression, but in this case it should be called voter elimination.

* TPP will eliminate millions of jobs in Latin America, which will drive millions of more people illegally into the United States and depress wages here. See https://johnhively.wordpress.com/2015/04/21/how-the-trans-pacific-partnership-will-destroy-american-jobs-by-destroying-us-exports/

* TPP will raise pharmaceutical prices by extending patents forcing the 99 percent to pay more for big pharma’s products.

* TPP will override Wall Street regulations, as if the mostly ineffective US regulations inhibit Wall Street profits and illegal activities.

Stunningly, Democrats such as Wall Street Senator Ron Wyden support doing all of the above to the American people.

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Is US Senator Bernie Sanders going to run for president because former Wall Street Senator Hilliary Clinton won’t represent the middle class. The Hilliary Clinton? The person who twice received $200,000 for half hour speeches to Goldman Sachs executives in October 2013. Hilliary is unlikely to represent the middle class as president, but she will spout off about doing so. That’s my take.

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On Tuesday, President appeared on Hardball to defend the Trans Pacific Partnership, a massive income and political power redistribution agreement. It will take income and voting rights from the 99 percent on behalf of the 1 percent. Leaked documents from the negotiations reveal this to be true. President Obama said US Senator Elizabeth Warren’s critique of the deal was wrong. See what the president, and Wall Street Senator’s Ron Wyden, Orrin Hatch and Mitch McConnell have in store for you at https://johnhively.wordpress.com/2015/04/17/wall-street-senator-ron-wyden-introduces-bill-into-the-us-senate-to-increase-income-and-wealth-inequality-in-the-united-states-and-throughout-the-pacific-rim/

On Wednesday, Warren responded via Twitter.

“The Obama Admin says I’m wrong — we shouldn’t worry about TPP. So why can’t the American people read the deal?” she questioned.

It was a direct attack against the administration’s handling of the negotiations, which liberals say have lacked transparency.

The administration argues that it hasn’t made the deal public to protect the status of the sensitive, ongoing negotiations.

Obama is attempting to build a bipartisan congressional coalition to support the 12-nation pact that he says would help economic growth and provide fair guidelines for workers.

He’s asking Congress to grant him trade promotion authority — or “fast-track” power — that’d allow him to negotiate trade deals without them being amended in Congress.

In a blog post that accompanied Warren’s tweet, she doubled down in her criticism of Obama.

“The Administration says I’m wrong — that there’s nothing to worry about,” Warren wrote. “They say the deal is nearly done, and they are making a lot of promises about how the deal will affect workers, the environment, and human rights. Promises — but people like you can’t see the actual deal.”

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Vietnam is the answer to the question in the title of this article.

Vietnam’s minimum wage rate is .28 cents an hour. Environmental standards are lax, if there are any, and labor unions are non-existent. Those conditions will make it likely that more American jobs will be exported overseas because the labor, health, safety and wage standards are much less than even in China. If it wasn’t financially feasible to ship US jobs to Vietnam, a trade pact with Vietnam will make it so, and send tens of thousands upon thousands of US jobs there. Let’s face it, jobs are the number one US export.

But there’s something even more sinister than meets the eye. Millions of jobs in Mexico, Central America, Peru and Chile will also be threatened with exportation to Vietnam and China under the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP). In which case, US exports will decline.

Maquiladora zones are located in Mexico and elsewhere in Latin America. These are free trade zones established by the United States and the host nations, such as Mexico, Honduras and El Salvador. The zones allow US manufacturers to assemble products in the zones, and then ship them duty free to the United States. Wages are bone poor in the Maquiladora zones, as low as $7.50 a day in Mexico’s northern zone, but they are higher than in Vietnam and China. China’s minimum wage is a little more than double Vietnam’s .28 cents per hour.

The parts assembled by US manufacturers in the Maquiladora zones must be made by US companies. This has been negotiated. In 2013, US corporations shipped $51 billion worth of parts manufactured in the United States to the over 3000 US factories in the northernmost Maquiladora zone in Mexico. That zone is twelve and a half miles deep and stretches from the Gulf of Mexico to the Pacific Ocean.

That 51 billion dollars of exports supports 250,000 American manufacturing jobs. The people who earn a living with those jobs spend their hard earned cash in their neighborhood grocery stores, stereo stores, clothing stores, computer stores, automobile dealerships, real estate companies, restaurants and more. That’s how those 250,000 manufacturing jobs keep another 400,000 to 800,000 people employed in other areas of the economy.

That doesn’t count the tens of thousands of Americans that mine the iron ore, or the rock, or chop the trees to make paper and houses, or manufacture cement, or who mold metal into products, and other producers of raw materials, or the people who operate the electric companies that power those 250,000 soon-to-be-lost manufacturing jobs. That’s another 100,000 US jobs in mining, smelting, excavating and other jobs dealing with raw materials that will be lost. Those jobs support another 200,000 to 300,000 service sector jobs.

But that’s not all. All of these jobs pay state, federal and local taxes that support schools, road building and maintenance, forest service jobs, fire and police, and a lot more government jobs. This is another 100,000 jobs that will be lost.

The Trans Pacific Partnership appears to be geared toward rendering obsolete the Maquiladora zones. Why else would Vietnam be a party to this agreement? The Vietnamese aren’t going to be purchasing a lot of American goods and services simply because those people can’t afford to do so.

When the Trans Pacific Partnership becomes law, kiss those jobs in the Maquiladora zones goodbye. Kiss that $51 billion dollars in US exports goodbye. And that’s just for the exports to one of these zones.

In El Salvador, 230,000 apparel workers will likely lose their jobs, which will be shipped to Vietnam if the TPP becomes law. Tens of thousands of workers in other central America nations will also lose their apparel manufacturing jobs in the zones. These people sew many of the clothes people wear in the United States and elsewhere. However, the rules of the zones state they can only assemble finished products. And that’s only in one industry.

Over 200,000 American workers supply the parts necessary to manufacture those clothes. Fabric, yarn and thread are made in US factories, and are then exported to Central America. Kiss those exports goodbye. Kiss those 200,000 plus American jobs goodbye, as well as the hundreds of thousands of US jobs supported by those manufacturing jobs.

We’re looking at the loss of billions of dollars of exports yearly, and millions of US jobs, if the TPP becomes law. And that’s only with the loss of two zones.

With the loss of jobs in the zones on such a massive scale, wages will drop like dead flies in Central America. That happened in Mexico after Nafta, which drove millions of people into the USA illegally.

Hundreds of thousands, and perhaps millions, of people will be forced to migrate to the United States illegally, and not because they want to migrate. This will depress the wages of millions of American citizens and put incredible pressure on our social service tax dollars, which will be greatly weakened by the loss of jobs.

So who benefits from the TPP? The difference between the old higher wages and the new lower wages will go straight into the pockets of rich shareholders and CEOs via higher corporate profits, rising dividends, and soaring share prices. Working people will pay the price. In other words, the TPP will redistribute massive amounts of income from the 99 to the 1 percent. That’s what it has been negotiated to do.

That’s one reason why Wall Senator Ron Wyden supports the Trans Pacific Partnership, along with President Obama, Mitch McConnell, Orrin Hatch, and Wall Street wing of the Republican Party. The TPP is an income redistribution scam.

AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka hits the mark in the video below.

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