Posts tagged ‘Disabled’

The Real Retirement Crisis » Counterpunch: Tells the Facts, Names the Names


 

“The lifespan of any civilization can be measured by the respect and care that is given to its elderly citizens, and those societies which treat their elderly with contempt have the seeds of their own destruction within them.”

—Arnold J. Toynbee

The astounding, and potentially tragic, aspect of Washington’s three-plus-decade Social Security debate is that it carries on with little regard to the challenges facing the program’s participants. Politicians on the right and center-right feel free to decry resistance to even “modest cuts” in Social Security benefits while ignoring the vulnerability of seniors who are living the effects of reductions already mandated in the program’s last major overhaul, in 1983.

But the situation for seniors – and future retirees – is becoming alarming. A new, supplemental poverty measure introduced by the Census Bureau last November nearly doubled the official estimate of Americans over 65 living in poverty, to 15.9%, mainly due to medical costs not counted in the official numbers. More than 34% were either poor or near-poor—defined as having family income less than twice the poverty line. Half of all retirement-age persons who were no longer working—that is, who were receiving Social Security—had total yearly income of less than $16,140—only a fraction more than the federal minimum wage.

Even small reductions in benefits, or slower growth over a period of years, could tip many of these people into poverty. Countless others, who once believed their personal savings, 401(k)s, employer-sponsored pensions, or the equity in their homes made their retirements secure, are finding out that this isn’t the case either. Meanwhile, the White House, Republicans, and centrist Democrats are reportedly negotiating a Grand Bargain built on the deficit-cutting Bowles-Simpson proposals, which would include deep reductions to Social Security. And state and local governments are scrounging for ways to cut back the rest of the safety net for seniors—targeting Medicaid funds for nursing homes and home health care, housing subsidies, and other benefits.

A true retirement crisis is looming in the U.S., but politicians, obsessed with Social Security projections decades into the future, are disinclined to address it. Financially vulnerable older workers will be affected almost as soon as they retire; workers in their 20s, 30s, and 40s today will be hit much harder.

The Social Security “deficit”—the amount by which annual old-age and Disability Insurance benefits are expected to exceed revenues—was projected in 2011 to total about $6.5 trillion over the next 75 years. But for all the political attention focused on it, the economic impact of that shortfall will be quite moderate, equaling just .7% of GDP. Even the Baby Boom retirement wave wouldn’t make a very big dent in the economy, according to the Social Security trustees, whose 2011 Annual Report estimated that the annual cost of benefits will rise gradually to 6.2% of GDP by 2035, decline to about 6% by 2050, then stabilize at about that level.

By contrast, the U.S. faces a “retirement income deficit” of $6.6 trillion—larger than Social Security’s projected 75-year shortfall and five times the size of the current-year federal deficit. The Retirement Income Deficit is a new measure unveiled in fall 2010 by the Center for Retirement Research at Boston College. It lumps together all the resources that Americans in their peak earning years will have to retire on: Social Security and pension benefits, retirement savings, home equity, and other assets. It calculates the income people will need in retirement, based on tax scenarios as well as the income replacement targets that Americans at different income levels will likely need to meet.

Social Security and Medicare are perhaps the only ingredients in the Retirement Income Deficit calculation that the elderly can still rely upon. Nearly two-thirds depend on Social Security for more than half their income, and roughly one in five for all of it. Without Social Security, nearly half of Americans over 65 would be living in poverty. If anything, dependence on Social Security has increasing since the latest economic slump, thanks to the collapsed housing market, the recession, decades of stagnating wages, and the disintegration of other elements of the social safety net, among other factors.

Not that it’s a lot to lean on. Social Security only replaces 37% of the average worker’s pre-retirement income at 65. More than 95% of recipients get less than $2,000 a month from the program. Women average less than $12,000 a year in benefits, compared to $14,000 for retirees overall, thanks to the gender pay gap—partially explaining why 75% of old people living in poverty in the U.S. are women. While this seems to merit little discussion in deficit-obsessed Washington or on Wall Street, it draws an alarming picture for anyone familiar with what’s happening in the rest of the country, where a Gallup poll found 90% of people aged 44 to 75 agreeing that the country faces a retirement crisis.

Even before the economic slump, however, there were reasons to worry about the erosion of Social Security.

The Real Retirement Crisis » Counterpunch: Tells the Facts, Names the Names

Advertisements

Only In America Could This Happen The RICH Will Let A Poor Person Die From Hunger


Extreme Poverty Has Double In The USA Since 1990


By Pat Garofalo  on Mar 6, 2012 at 2:05 pm

According to the latest Census Bureau data, nearly 50 percent of Americans are either low-income or living in poverty in the wake of the Great Recession. And a new study from the National Poverty Center shows just how deep in poverty some of those people are, finding that the number of households living on less than $2 per day (before government benefits) has more than doubled in the last 15 years:

The number of U.S. households living on less than $2 per person per day — which the study terms “extreme poverty” — more than doubled between 1996 and 2011, from 636,000 to 1.46 million, the study finds. The number of children in extremely poor households also doubled, from 1.4 million to 2.8 million.

 

While extreme poverty doubled overall, it tripled amongst female headed households. Of course, there’s always the tact taken North Carolina Republican State Representative George Cleveland last week, who simply denied that anyone in his state lives in extreme poverty. As we noted at the time, “the 728,842 North Carolinians who are classified as living in deep poverty might take issue with that assessment.”

Tags:

By clicking and submitting a comment I acknowledge the ThinkProgress Privacy Policy and agree to the ThinkProgress Terms of Use. I understand that my comments are also being governed by Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, or Hotmail’s Terms of Use and Privacy Policies as applicable, which can be found here.

Revised Obama Tax Plan: Higher Dividend Tax On The Wealthy | True Tax Facts | Digg Mynews


It seems out of nowhere, President Obama has made a significant change in his tax plan proposal. Obama’s 2013 budget year now calls for more taxes on the wealthy, specifically a higher tax on dividends.

His new tax plan calls for an increase of the dividend tax to a maximum of 40% for households earning $250,000 a year. Coincidentally, that is equal to the higher maximum income tax rate set to go into effect in 2013.

According to the Obama administration, the increase in the dividend tax rate is needed to pay down the federal deficit and to make the tax code more progressive.

“Choices had to be made,” a senior Obama administration told reporters, explaining the bid to raise more than $200 billion over a decade with the steeper dividend taxes on the wealthy.

In addition to an increase in the dividend tax rate, the Obama administration is proposing to raise the current 15% long-term capital gains tax to 20% for the wealthiest Americans.

If you look closely, the Obama tax plan to tax the rich seems like an election year campaign ploy to win the lower and middle class vote. Fortunately for the wealthy and big corporations, it is extremely unlikely that Obama’s tax provisions will be become law, including his dividend tax increase.

“This is a reversal of what was a very specific policy feature of the first three budgets to keep dividends and capital gains taxed at the same rate,” said Michael Mundaca, a former top Treasury tax official under Obama, now at the accounting firm Ernst & Young.

“Companies may be more likely to retain earnings or seek alternatives ways to distribute their earnings such as by buying back stock,” Mundaca said.

Tax experts believe that big corporations may accelerate 2013 dividend payments into 2012 to dodge tax hikes.

“I wouldn’t be surprised if we see moving all their 2013 dividends into 2012,” Kies said. “A lot of U.S. companies are sitting on cash.”

source: reuters.com

Tags: budget deficit, dividend tax, dividend tax increase, Income Tax, obama administration, obama tax, obama tax plan, Tax Experts, tax increase, tax plan

Filed under Taxes by
Permalink Print Comment
February 13, 2012
Obama Tax Plan Calls For Buffet Rule

After four consecutive years of one trillion dollar-plus deficits, the U.S. administration predicts a budget deficit drop below 1 trillion. That’s what President Obama’s budget plan calls for based on his proposed tax and spending policies.

One of the biggest contributors to reducing the deficit calls for a raise in the income tax rate on the wealthy. The so-called “Buffett Rule” would guarantee that households making more than $1 million a year pay at least 30% of their income in taxes.

This proposal was actually presented by America’s wealthiest businessman, Warren Buffett. To support this tax proposal, he used the real life example that it’s unfair that he (being a billionaire) pay a lower tax rate than his secretary.

The implementation of the Buffet Tax would raise approximately $1.5 trillion dollars. Additional sources of revenue to reduce the deficit would come from a tax reform plan that includes the expiration of the Bush Tax and the elimination of various tax preferences.

Will Obama’s tax plan work, or will it backfire?

Maybe the focus of cutting the deficit should be on creating jobs. New jobs mean more tax revenue and less expenditures to pay the unemployed.

Tags: budget deficit, buffet rule, buffet tax, obama tax, obama tax plan, tax plan, tax proposal, Tax Rate, tax revenue

Filed under Taxes by
Permalink Print Comment
February 10, 2012
Free Tax Help For Preparing Your Return

The IRS has a new online tax tool to help low and middle income taxpayers find local sites to get free tax help. The free tax help is made available by individuals in the IRS Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) and the Tax Counseling for the Elderly (TCE) programs.

The tool, available 24 hours a day, makes it easier for qualified individuals to find free tax help directly from the Internal Revenue Service. Taxpayers with incomes of $50,000 or less can get their taxes done for free by IRS volunteers. Senior citizens aged 60 and older can get free tax help from volunteers in the Tax Counseling for the Elderly (TCE) program.

Taxpayers can access the application by clicking on this free tax help tool link or by going to irs.gov and entering the letters “VITA” in the search box. Next, click on the “Free Tax Return Preparation For You by Volunteers” option, then select the “Find a VITA site near you” option.

Once there, an easy-to-use locator prompts users to enter a zip code to search thousands of free tax preparation sites, narrowing the results to a selected radius. VITA sites are listed by location name, address, phone number, days and hours of operation, and the language-assistance options offered. Finally, taxpayers select a specific tax preparation site to get a map to provide step-by-step directions.

More than three million tax returns were prepared by VITA and TCE volunteers in during the 2011 tax season.

The IRS is continually improving its website to provide the latest tax information to taxpayers.

source:irs.gov

Tags: free tax help, irs tax help, irs volunteers, Tax Help, Tax Preparation, VITA

Filed under Taxes by
Permalink Print Comment
Next Page »

Archives
February 2012 (5)
January 2012 (3)
November 2011 (2)
October 2011 (7)
August 2011 (2)
July 2011 (3)
April 2011 (1)
March 2011 (3)
February 2011 (20)
January 2011 (15)
December 2010 (8)
November 2010 (5)
August 2010 (2)
July 2010 (1)
June 2010 (4)
May 2010 (2)
April 2010 (2)
March 2010 (2)
February 2010 (2)
January 2010 (5)
December 2009 (11)
October 2009 (1)
September 2009 (1)
August 2009 (4)
April 2009 (1)
March 2009 (3)
February 2009 (17)
January 2009 (17)
December 2008 (14)
November 2008 (17)
October 2008 (10)

FreeTaxUSA_Cash_120x60
Tax Help and Resources
Slash Your Taxes
Succeed in Tax Court
E-commerce Tax Guide
Property Tax Consultant
Internet Tax Guide
Recent Posts
Revised Obama Tax Plan: Higher Dividend Tax On The Wealthy
Obama Tax Plan Calls For Buffet Rule
Free Tax Help For Preparing Your Return
Expanded Version of IRS Smartphone Tax App Now Available
New Jersey Income Tax Cut Proposal Would Help The Rich

Copyright 2012

Revised Obama Tax Plan: Higher Dividend Tax On The Wealthy | True Tax Facts | Digg Mynews.

Four Democrats Sit Out Critical Vote



When California‘s SB 810 — Single Payer Health Care for California passed through the California Senate‘s Appropriations Committee by a 6-2 vote last week, activists thought they had an excellent chance to get the “Medicare for All” bill passed by the full Senate.

Yesterday, however, four Democrats sat out the critical vote, leaving the bill short 2 votes of the 21 votes needed for passage. 19 Democrats voted yes, 15 Republicans and 1 Democrat voted no. And the key remaining four Democrats abstained.

SB 810 can be brought up again under “Reconsideration” next Tuesday, January 31, 2012.

Single Payer Now is urging that pressure be put on the 4 Democrats who didn’t vote:

The following 4 Senators abstained from even casting a vote on this extremely important piece of legislation.

Senator Alex Padilla (Pacoima/LA area)
Email: Senator.Padilla@sen.ca.gov
Phone: (916) 651?4020

Senator Juan Vargas (San Diego area)
Email: Juan.Vargas@sen.ca.gov
Phone: (916) 651?4040

Senator Michael Rubio (Fresno/Bakersfield area)
Email: Michael.Rubio@sen.ca.gov
Phone: (916) 651?4016

Senator Rod Wright (Los Angeles area)
Email: Senator.Wright@sen.ca.gov
Phone: (916) 651?4025

Check here to see if you are represented by these senators.

* * *

The Los Angeles Times
reports:

State lawmakers deadlocked Thursday over a controversial measure that would provide universal healthcare in California.

In a vote in which some Democrats did not participate, the measure received only 19 of the 21 votes needed for passage in the Senate, but it was put over for another possible vote next week. […]

Sen. Mark Leno (D-San Francisco) noted that some people have argued there is no need for state legislation because the federal government has already approved an affordable healthcare system to begin in 2014.

But Leno said states are allowed to provide greater healthcare under that system, and that California should act because the courts are considering lawsuits to overturn the federal plan.

Leno said SB 810 is needed because healthcare premiums have increased five times the rate of inflation in the last decade and 12 million Californians went without coverage during some time last year.

“Clearly, the current system is not working for businesses, for employers, for employees, for families,” he said.

Link to original article from Common Dreams


Login

Add New Comment


  • Image

Showing 1 comment


  • Sunnsea

    The point is to get the privates out of basic health care insurance.  The Federal law actually reinforces their position, making them even stronger, though they will deny it.  SB810 is vital to reducing costs of insurance to all Californians.

  • M Subscribe by email

  • S RSS

Reactions









Trackback URL

blog comments powered by Disqus

back to top

States – California

California News

Prev Next Page:

Message from Senator Leno – SB 810


Most of you have likely heard the disappointing news that our bill, SB 810, the California Universal Health Care Act, failed to move off the Senate Floor by January 31st, meaning it cannot advance further in the legislative process this year. Despite our unwavering advocacy, too few members were willing to cast votes in favor of SB 810 this year, including several members who had voted for the legislation before. Unfortunately this means that Californians will continue to have a broken health care system in dire need of change,…

Senator Mark Leno 31 Jan 2012 Hits:110 California

Read more

A Story from Occupy Irvine


In December, on a cold Thursday afternoon, Trang Che appeared at Occupy Irvine with her neighbor and dear friend, Elaine Quillian, an octogenarian who calls her “little Sister.” Elaine is an active member of both MoveOn and Occupy OC. Trang was imminently facing eviction from her condo in 3 days and had heard that other Occupy communities had been able to help people in her same situation. She spoke elequently at GA about her plight–she told us how she came to this country…

Kate Fitch Frankel Nikolenko 30 Jan 2012 Hits:99 California

Read more

URGENT – Help California Pass Single Payer on Tuesday


The California Senate is just 2 votes short to pass its single payer health care bill, SB 810 – the California Universal Healthcare Act, before the end of this legislative session on Tuesday. Four Democratic Senators have not voted either way on this bill.  Its author, Senator Mark Leno, can bring the bill up for reconsideration, as long as he knows that he has two more votes!! Most of us have family or friends in California. Many of these Californians may not know how important it is to call and email these…

Judy Hess | PDA Fresno 27 Jan 2012 Hits:736 California

Read more

Single Payer Falls 2 Votes Short In California Senate


Four Democrats Sit Out Critical Vote When California’s SB 810 — Single Payer Health Care for California passed through the California Senate’s Appropriations Committee by a 6-2 vote last week, activists thought they had an excellent chance to get the “Medicare for All” bill passed by the full Senate. Yesterday, however, four Democrats sat out the critical vote, leaving the bill short 2 votes of the 21 votes needed for passage. 19 Democrats voted yes, 15 Republicans and 1 Democrat voted no. And the key remaining four…

Common Dreams 27 Jan 2012 Hits:429 California

Read more

Stung by Bad PR, City Officials Adopting New Tactics to Suppress Occupy Oakland


“The government can always articulate rationales for why they’re prosecuting one person and not another.” Oakland officials have shifted tactics since conducting a series of violent assaults on Occupy Oakland in October and November in the glare of the national media. Oakland officials have taken a new tack in their suppression of the Occupy movement, one that seems addressed to the city’s public relations problems. Gone are the mass arrests, “less-lethal” weaponry and tear gas, replaced with a kind of “lawfare” on the few protesters who…

Susie Cagle | AlterNet 27 Jan 2012 Hits:158 California

Read more

BBLV Letter to Rep. Capps


The Progressive Democrats of Santa Barbara visit your office today to ask you to join the members of the Congressional Progressive Caucus to support some important bills that are moving through the House. There is a growing crisis in the country that needs your immediate action. Income inequality is at an all-time high, with working Americans struggling to make ends meet. Are you going to support the millions of people who need help to survive or are you going to support the richest corporations and Wall…

Lois Hamilton | PDA Santa Barbara 20 Jan 2012 Hits:132 California

Read more

Senator Leno’s Single-Payer Health Care Bill Clears Senate Appropriations


SACRAMENTO – The Senate Appropriations Committee today approved the California Universal Health Care Act, authored by Senator Mark Leno (D-San Francisco). Senate Bill 810 guarantees all Californians comprehensive, universal health care …

Office of CA Senator Mark Leno 19 Jan 2012 Hits:594 California

Read more

States Take On Citizens United


Montana legal ruling a possible game-changer for states; California lawmakers introduce legislation to overturn Citizens United Montana is proving to be a potential catalyst for change in the potential challenge to Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission. As Roll Call reports: The Montana Supreme Court last week rejected a constitutional challenge to the state’s century-old prohibition on independent corporate campaign expenditures. That Montana statute was technically nullified when the U.S. Supreme Court threw out federal limits on independent corporate and union political spending in 2010. But unlike…

Common Dreams 07 Jan 2012 Hits:241 California

Read more

Nurses to Join Call for Healthcare for the 99% On Monday


Rallies in Sacramento, Los Angeles to Challenge Insurance Giants, Seek Passage of Bill to Extend Guaranteed Care to All Californians A broad coalition of activists – including registered nurses, student nurses, medical students, seniors, physicians, members of the Occupy movement, and the recently formed Campaign for a Health California (CHC) – will hold marches and rallies Monday, January 9 in Sacramento and Los Angeles to step up the campaign to extend guaranteed healthcare coverage to all Californians. The actions will also promote passage of SB 810, which would establish a Medicare for…

National Nurses United 06 Jan 2012 Hits:508 California

Read more

Occupy’s Rose Parade float: 70-foot octopus of corporate greed


Occupy protesters are busy finishing their float that will run at the end of the Rose Parade: a 70-by-40-foot octopus made of recycled plastic bags. The octopus, said activist Mark Lipman of Los Angeles, represents Wall Street’s stranglehold on political, cultural and social life, with tentacles “that reach into your pocket to get your money and a tentacle to get your house.” “This is the real Rose Parade, and the other is the Rose Charade,” said Pete Thottam, 40, an…

Hailey Branson-Potts | LA Times 30 Dec 2011 Hits:753 California

Read more

Occupy Oakland protesters arrested at foreclosed home


OAKLAND — A dozen people linked to the Occupy Oakland movement were arrested Thursday at a foreclosed property in West Oakland. The property, located at 1415 and 1417 10th St., is listed as a foreclosed property for sale on the website indexpost.com, which lists foreclosures by state. The home, built in 1890, was occupied by activists from Causa Justa (Just Cause) and Occupy Oakland. It was not clear how long people have been living in the home. One report said people had been staying there since…

Kristin J. Bender | Oakland Tribune 30 Dec 2011 Hits:246 California

Read more

Small Occupy Movements Across the Country Accumulate Victories


In a recent San Francisco Chronicle piece, “Occupy movement must move toward the center,” Tony Fels, associate professor of history at the University of San Francisco, writes that the Occupy “movement has reached a tactical dead end.” Demonstrators don’t have nicely packaged sound bites; there’s no go-to spokesperson; Occupy DC is one of the last camps standing. But the movement is far from dead. Here in California, the movement is exploding. In a recent study called “Diffusion of the Occupy Movement in California,” UC Riverside …

Rose Aguilar, Truthout | Report 27 Dec 2011 Hits:250 California

Read more

Occupy Long Beach Stages Hospital “Die-In” in Support of Striking Nurses


The California Nurses Association and National Nurses United in Los Angeles and San Francisco have been battling with Sutter Health hospital management for three months over basic worker’s rights: they want better health care, staffing, and sick leave. On Thursday, they staged a one-day strike—their second—which reportedly attracted over 6000 nurses from nine hospitals, with a majority of workers striking. And on Friday, management announced that nurses who joined the strike on Thursday would not be allowed to return to work that…

Julianne Escobedo Shepherd | Sourced from AlterNet 24 Dec 2011 Hits:394 California

Read more

Occupy Protesters Take Aim at Rose Parade


Pasadena police and Tournament of Roses officials have been negotiating with Occupy leaders for several weeks to prevent problems. Protesters will be allowed to march after all the floats have gone. The Rose Parade has long been a magnet for protesters looking for global attention for their causes and grievances. Native Americans once threw a balloon filled with red paint onto the parade route to represent the spilling of Indian blood. AIDS activists interrupted the parade by staging a sit-in. One year, a Pasadena mayor wore…

Catherine Saillant and Richard Winton, Los Angeles Times 24 Dec 2011 Hits:254 California

Read more

Vice Chair, North Area of the San Diego County Democratic Party Tenders Her Resignation


Greetings of a rainy Monday, all! I have tendered my resignation as Vice Chair, North Area for the San Diego County Democratic Party. I will remain a member of the San Diego County Democratic Central Committee and a delegate therefrom to the California Democratic Party. I have done this because I cannot stay neutral during the coming Primary races, which being an Area Vice Chair requires. Many of you know that I have been very active in the local Occupy Wall Street movement, Occupy San…

Martha Sullivan | Ocean Beach Rag 16 Dec 2011 Hits:246 California

Read more

  • This is how we celebrate Bill of Rights Day in Fresno – the 220th anniversary of the ratification of the Bill of Rights. Today, the homeless in Fresno experienced some of…

  • By a vote of 8 to 3, the San Francisco Board of Supervisors today (December 13, 2011) adopted a strong resolution calling on Congress to adopt a new set…

  • The Occupy Oakland action at the Port of Oakland this morning came off without incident.  It was successful in achieving its primary objective at two terminals where ships were waiting…

  •  LOS ANGELES — It took Los Angeles police less than 30 minutes last night to take down the Occupy Wall Street encampment that had spent the past two…

  • LOS ANGELES — Wall Street protesters declared a minor victory Monday when they defied a midnight deadline to leave their tent city encampment around City Hall and police…

  • Dear Frank, I have been involved with Occupy LA since its inception almost two months ago. Being there and partaking in creating a far reaching vision via participatory direct democracy has…

  • SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Two University of California, Davis police officers involved in the pepper spraying of seated protesters were placed on administrative leave Sunday, as the school’s…

  • Apart from the updates that a variety of readers sent yesterday about the affectless sadism of a UC Davis policemen, let me mention a few more links and resources: 1) Notice…

  • OAKLAND, Calif.— Riot-clad law enforcement officers cleared out a weeks-old anti-Wall Street encampment in Oakland just before dawn Monday, arresting dozens of Occupy demonstrators and clearing out tents…

Prev Next

PDA In Your State

Take Action

PDA Issues

PDA is organized around several core issues. These issues include:

Each team hosts a monthly conference call. Calls feature legislators, staffers and other policy experts. On these calls we determine PDA legislation to support as well as actions and future events.

California Events

No events

Subscribe to RSS Feed

PDA Endorsed Candidate

PDA Candidates

PDA Issues

PDA On the Web

The Violent Attacks On Organized Labor


Labor History Articles Labor, History Cast Unfavorable Glance at the Pinkertons: A Checkered Past
Latest News
News Bulletins
APWU Web News Articles
For the Press
Calendar of Events
Current Issues
Labor History Articles
News Archives
Issues Archives

Follow APWU
APWU News on Facebook APWU News on Twitter

About RSS

Labor, History Cast Unfavorable Glance at the Pinkertons:
A Checkered Past

(This article was first published in the November/December 2006 issue of The American Postal Worker magazine.)

Offering a range of “private investigative” services, the Pinkerton Detective Agency was founded in 1850 and at first specialized in train robberies: the protection of railroad property. By the late 1860s, however, Pinkerton agents were protecting all manner of property — most notoriously when its ownership was at odds with organized labor.
A barge filled with Pinkerton goons received a rough greeting in Homestead, PA. This 1892 Harper’s Weekly illustration was based on a photo taken during the riot.

A barge filled with Pinkerton goons received a rough greeting in Homestead, PA. This 1892 Harper’s Weekly illustration was based on a photo taken during the riot.

“Pinkerton” survives to this day as part of an international security business, but is nothing more than a brand name, while the name itself maintains its strong historical associations with anti-worker movements that typically involved organized brutality.

A native of Glasgow, Scotland, Allan Pinkerton emigrated to the United States in 1842 at age 23. Trained as a cooper, or barrel-maker, the future detective had had to flee the United Kingdom because of his association with a radical group seeking to reform Parliament: Young Pinkerton was a well-known advocate of civil disobedience.

Settling near Chicago, Pinkerton started a cooperage. During a wood-gathering visit to a previously uninhabited island, he chanced upon a counterfeit-coin ring and alerted the authorities. This led to his appointment as a deputy sheriff and he soon had become Chicago’s first full-time detective. A few years later he left the city police force and started his own agency.

Working with the railroads was an ideal way to get one’s name before the public. In 1861, Pinkerton was given credit for uncovering an inauguration-train-stop plot against Abraham Lincoln. An impressed president hired the agency to spy on the Confederacy. Pinkerton operatives were known as a “secret service,” but were not the predecessors of the Treasury Department entity we know today, which did not begin to protect U.S. presidents until the 1890s.

The Agency’s Reputation

Pinkerton returned to Chicago after the Civil War and supervised the development of an impressive criminal database, including the world’s largest collection of mug shots. The agency’s logo, known as “The All-Seeing Eye,” is acknowledged as inspiring the term “private eye” to describe a private investigator or detective.

A lot of agency detective work, however, became “protective” work. With labor disputes often turning violent, several states had enacted laws to give businesses the authority to create or rent police forces.

Corporations desirous of ascertaining whether their employees are joining any secret labor organizations with a view of compelling terms from employers can [hire] a detective suitable to obtain this information.
— Pinkerton advertisement,
early 1890s

The Pinkerton agency’s first foray into strikebreaking took place at an Illinois mine in 1866, during which it provided “guards” to “protect” replacement workers. An armed force would escort scabs into a factory, plant or mine, while armed watchmen in towers would intimidate strikers.

Hundreds of strike-breaking operations were created during the 1870s, with some, such as the Baldwin-Felts Agency, openly boasting about organizer harassment and other “labor discipline services.”

One infamous “Pink” was James McParlan, who infiltrated the Molly Maguires, a secret organization of coal miners. Beginning in 1872, he was part of the “Mollies” for perhaps four years, and allegedly witnessed several incidents of terrorism in the coal fields. He later offered sensational testimony during murder trials, which ultimately led to the hanging of 10 men. Historians are divided on whether the “Mollies” were truly guilty and, if so, whether these 10 in particular were set up, possibly by McParlan. Pinkerton, no stranger to self-promotion, gave his favorable version of events in a book published in 1877: The Molly Maguires and the Detectives.

A year later, he authored Strikers, Communists and Tramps. The title is quite telling, and in the pages of the book he defended the use of his agents as strikebreakers, arguing that it was an extension of his original property-safety business and that opposition to unionism was a good way to “protect”workers.

Homestead and Other Riots

In late June 1884, Allan Pinkerton stumbled during a stroll on a sidewalk. He bit his tongue, developed gangrene, and died quickly thereafter, at age 64. His sons, Robert and William, took over the agency, whose reputation as a force against labor continued to grow. Pinkertons were alleged to have ignited the bomb that sparked Chicago’s deadly Haymarket Riot of 1886. At the very least this incident supported the notion that trouble often came on the heels of the Pinkertons. It made sense: Day-laborer “detectives” could perpetuate their own employment by inciting riots.

In the early 1890s, the iron and steel workers’ union was a strong one, with numerous contracts, including a threeyear agreement in the western Pennsylvania steel-mill town of Homestead. But even though the industry was healthy, Andrew Carnegie sought a wage reduction there. On July 1, 1892, with only a few days left under the contract, the union rejected the offer; the workers were locked out.

The Pinkertons were on their way, and they would not be welcome. “Our people as a general thing think they are a horde of cut-throats, thieves, and murderers,” Homestead’s mayor told newspapers, “and are in the employ of unscrupulous capital for the oppression of honest labor.” It was recalled how the agency had been used in nearby coal fields, in 1884 to protect Hungarians and Slavs brought in as strikebreakers, and in 1891 to protect Italian replacement workers hired to fill in for the then-striking Hungarians and Slavs.

The locked-out Homestead workers prepared to meet the Pinkertons on their own terms. A few days after the lockout began, a boatload of agents landed near the mill. A battle followed during which 10 men — including three detectives — were killed and three dozen wounded. After a 14-hour fight, the workers captured 300 agents and held them captive. A day later, the disarmed and disgraced Pinkertons were run out of town.

An angry Henry C. Frick, hired by Carnegie to run the mill with replacements, sought help from Pennsylvania’s governor. In a few days, the mill town of 12,000 was an armed camp. It stayed that way until the soldiers departed in late November, when the lockout officially ended in utter defeat: The union treasury was empty, and workers’ families were facing winter. Desperate workers went back in the mill, without a union.

Bad Publicity

Newspaper editorial writers used Homestead as an illustration of the plight of the common man, and the Pinkertons were seen as a tool of the unscrupulous corporation. The agency’s reputation never fully recovered; largely forgotten was the company’s role in the pursuit of outlaws such as Frank and Jesse James, and Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid.

By the early 20th Century, workers had achieved some governmental protections against thuggish strikebreaking practices. Union-busting tactics evolved, with the more successful anti-labor operations preparing large forces of replacement workers, sometimes skilled, and ready to travel where needed.

The Pinkerton company became mainly a security guard operation, with few public encounters with labor. Robert died in 1907, and William in 1923. Robert’s son, Allan II, a World War I veteran, led the agency until his death in 1930. The last of the line to lead the Pinkertons was Robert II, great-grandson of the founder. When he died in 1967, the private agency became a public corporation.

During the 1980s, the American Brands conglomerate acquired Pinkerton. In 1999, a European company, Securitas Group, absorbed the “brand,” and it soon had scooped up other big-name security firms. In 2003, Pinkerton, Burns, Wells Fargo, American Protective Services, First Security and others became Securitas USA.

Pinkerton Government Services, as the branch of Securitas is now known, has two divisions: Governmental Security and Homeland Security. A visitor to the company’s Web site learns about the “Private Eye” and the agency’s early days, but virtually nothing about strikebreaking.

[back to top]

The Media Whitewashes Jan Brewers Racist Disrespect Of President Obama


January 27, 2012

By Rmuse

Share218

25


Every family has dirty little secrets that are never discussed in polite company whether it’s a drug-addicted nephew, promiscuous sister-in-law, or alcoholic uncle who cannot hold a steady job. America has a dirty little secret that existed at the country’s founding and persists in 2012, and although it is exposed from time to time, Americans like to keep quiet about it out of shame and embarrassment. Our dirty little secret has been whispered about for the past four years and was exposed in a widely circulated photograph on Wednesday.

The photograph of Arizona governor Jan Brewer shaking her finger at President Obama is about more than accusing the “Obama administration of turning a blind eye to illegal immigration because migrants will help Mr. Obama register more Democratic votes.” Brewer’s actions were more than disrespect for the leader of the most powerful nation on Earth, they were outward expressions of white supremacy befitting a pre-Civil War plantation owner scolding an errant slave who forgot to empty the master’s chamber pot.

It is no secret that Brewer harbors racist views toward Americans whose skin color is anything but lily white. She promoted and proudly signed the racial profiling law that requires law enforcement to detain and question Arizona residents who appear to be illegal (not white). The not-white is equal to not-American meme began with the birther movement and continues in not-so-coded racist campaigns of the four remaining  Republican presidential hopefuls. Brewer shaking her finger at the president characterizes white supremacists‘ contention that African Americans are inferior, not like us, and certainly not real Americans. Why else would a pathetic buffoon like Brewer feel comfortable scolding the President of the United States in public and full view of photographer’s lenses? Because she feels superior to a Black man even though his office, intellect and integrity dwarfs her racist and witless mind.

The Republican presidential hopefuls’ racism shows no sign of abating and their racially charged rhetoric is finally bringing America’s dirty little secret to the public’s attention. Each candidate has, in their own calculated manner, tied President Obama to their faulty characterization that African Americans are lazy and not really Americans. Willard “Mitt” Romney’s campaign catch-phrase, “Keep America American” was lifted from KKK literature and implies that getting rid of Obama will keep America American as if the President is a foreign interloper. Romney’s cult believed Blacks were cursed until 1978 and they changed their doctrine after it became politically incorrect to portray African Americans as inferior.

Newt Gingrich called President Obama the “food stamp president” and he is running an overtly racist campaign to appeal to white supremacists that permeate the South, and as the nation is discovering, the entire country. Gingrich went so far as recommending that to teach lazy minority children the value of the white work ethic, they should clean their white classmate’s toilets. Gingrich was not only referring to African Americans because he said that Spanish is a ghetto language imputing laziness to Spanish speaking Americans. Alan Grayson, a former Democratic congressman from Florida, called Gingrich’s racist pandering the  most “overtly racist campaign I’ve seen in the country since George Wallace.” It is no coincidence that Gingrich ramped up his racist rhetoric in South Carolina where the Confederate flag still flies over the capital; his ploy propelled him to victory and front-runner status in the race for the Republican nomination. Gingrich is aware that racism sells in America.

Rick Santorum used a white supremacist theme from Birth of a Nation with its imagery of ignorant free African Americans who are an encumbrance on white America. He said, “I don’t want to make black people’s lives better by giving them somebody else’s money,” and it is a favorite theme of conservatives who characterize President Obama as stealing white Americans’ money to give to his lazy African American “bros” in return for their votes much like Brewer’s accusation against President Obama. Santorum’s racially charged comments are in stark contrast to his alleged Christianity that teaches love for all humanity and charity for those in need; unless they are African Americans.

The laundry list of racism and white supremacy is growing every day, and the mainstream media is keeping America’s dirty little secret under wraps. But all that changed when Brewer stuck her vile little finger in President Obama’s face as if she was scolding a disobedient slave, or an uppity Negro who has the audacity to wear a suit and sit in the Oval Office. Conservatives celebrated Brewer’s disrespect for the President because she “put the black man in his place” but they are ignoring one critical point. The Republican drive toward apartheid will backfire as the country’s population becomes “darker” and one can only imagine the rage among African Americans at the sight of a lying white supremacist shaking her finger at the first African American President who has more integrity and intelligence than ten-thousand Jan Brewers.

America can only prosper when all citizens are valued equally regardless of race. It is telling that besides the media’s reluctance to assail GOP racism, Christians espousing brotherly love are also silent. It makes sense though, because although not all Christians are Republicans, nearly all Republicans are Christians and during this campaign, racist Christian Republicans are finding success pandering to white supremacists and racist voters.

America’s dirty little secret cannot be kept quiet any longer despite the media’s best efforts to protect the GOP. They kept the secret under wraps during the 2008 general election and they are on par to repeat their hush-up of GOP racism in 2012. However, Republican presidential hopefuls brought race into the election and now, a cretin from Arizona displayed white supremacy toward the President in one photograph and although Jan Brewer is a useless dolt, she did America a favor by revealing the dirty secret that racism and white supremacy is the purview of the Republican Party. Just don’t expect any show of gratitude from decent Americans; regardless of their race.

84tweetsTOP5Kretweet


PHP Freelancer


Related posts:

  1. Beck Repeats and Stands by His Claim that President Obama is a Racist
  2. Of Tar Babies And Presidents: The Racist Strategy To Demean Obama
  3. Donald Trump Proclaims Himself The Least Racist Person In The World
  4. Glenn Beck Tries to Scare Whites by Labeling Obama a Racist
  5. Fox News Chief Rupert Murdoch Also Thinks Obama is a Racist

Tags:
Arizona racial profiling, Jan Brewer, President Obama, Republican presidential hopefuls racists, Republicans racism

This entry was posted on January 27, 2012 at 10:00 am and is filed under Commentary, Featured News, rmuse. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.

25 Responses to The Media Whitewashes Jan Brewer’s Racist Disrespect Of President Obama


  • Reynardine on January 27, 2012 at 10:32 am

    The “dark triad” (malignant narcissist, psychopath, and Machiavellian) types take advantage of both their victims’ and the average observer’s tendency to give the benefit of the doubt, to not attribute a malign motive where a benign or at least a neutral one will do. The reports I’ve seen on this seem to suggest she is simply a screechy old lady (a stereotype in itself). But of course, she’s a bigot. Most of us know that already.

    Reply


  • Jolene on January 27, 2012 at 10:32 am

    And the state of Georgia is attempting to keep President Obama off the ballot this November, according to Rachel Maddow on her show last night. Some Georgian judge even ordered the President to show up in his courtroom to testify! Why? Because those racist a-holes are still claiming that Obama wasn’t born in the US and therefore isn’t qualified to run for POTUS. That long drawn-out scream of despair you hear is me crying for our country.

    Reply


    • SinghX on January 27, 2012 at 11:52 am

      A judge already threw out the same lunatics once before for bring false suit over Obama’s citizenship; they were fined 20K for their misconduct. I hope this time there is jail time and the fine triples….

      Reply


  • Anne on January 27, 2012 at 10:48 am

    Brewer is trying to spin this incident in a way that shows the president as the aggressor. She is saying she felt “threatened” by him. Then, there are the Obama haters who are reflexively backing Brewer and saying she has more “balls” than the president. Of course, that speaks volumes only about her and those who back her. It is yet another example of a Republican racist who simply cannot accept the fact that she is a subordinate to a black man. I’m sure it sticks in her craw just like it does of people like Limbaugh, Beck, and Palin, along with the do-nothing GOP members of Congress, as well as the contenders for the GOP nomination. They are showing the world unmistakably that this country has come a long way, but still has a long way to go in confronting the harsh realities of racism in this country.

    Reply


  • robyn ryan on January 27, 2012 at 11:21 am

    Let’s not forget that Gov. Brewer’s own party believes that she is too stupid, amoral or degenerate to have control of her own body.

    In this instance, they may be right. At least about the mouth part.

    Reply


    • kimbutgar on January 27, 2012 at 12:50 pm

      All my in-laws in Arizona think she is a dummy and are ashamed she was elected Governor.

      Reply


  • Dan on January 27, 2012 at 11:21 am

    I’m not gonna say Jan Brewer is a racist. At least not from what I see in the photo. What I do see, is a very unprofessional Brewer shaking her finger at the leader of the free world. First of all, I can’t see how hinge would have escalated to that point, that quickly, unless she was planning it. Everyone knows of The Presidents even temper. In fact the GOP is constantly calling him a pantywaist because of it. He lost his cool on the Tarmac? Really? No she was showboating for her lunatic constituents. This will go a long way towards her re election and she knows it.

    Reply


    • Donna Kuykendall Stebbins on January 27, 2012 at 11:35 am

      She IS a racist. Everything she has done as Governor Of Arizona SHOWS she a racist puppet of our RECALLED ex-Senator Pearce and our lowlife Sheriff Joe.

      Reply


    • Filthy Pazuzu on January 27, 2012 at 12:08 pm

      It’s obvious that Jan Brewer is unprofessional, and I have no doubt she knew what she was gonna do before she even met Obama.

      But it’s also obvious the only reason her dim little mind thought it acceptable to do that to her president is because she’s a vile, narcissistic white supremacist and Obama is black.

      I bet she wouldn’t do that to the white president of her bank, the white president of her country club, or the white chairman of her state’s Republican party.

      Reply


    • Reynardine on January 27, 2012 at 2:20 pm

      She is peddling her lousy book to a racist audience. Directly she had handed the President her “private” letter to the President, she released it to the press. And although she cannot seriously think she is a lily fair maid standing up to a ravening black male, that’s the image she’s trying to create (lotsa luck).

      Reply


  • Shiva on January 27, 2012 at 11:33 am

    I hate to say it but the Democrats need to use the Republicans overt Racism in 2012. For those who don’t know the code words, it’s going to have to be made plain to everyone. The 2012 field of GOP candidates for the nomination for president are perhaps the worst that has ever been presented. Gov. Brewer is just the tip of the iceberg. While many conservatives make it a warm wet feeling down their leg when they see her shaking her finger, far more Americans see it differently. Arizona needs to look deep within itself

    Reply


  • SinghX on January 27, 2012 at 11:49 am

    “…Why else would a pathetic buffoon like Brewer feel comfortable scolding the President of the United States in public and full view of photographer’s lenses?…”

    Because she’s out of her league, that’s why! This is a woman suited to run a local dry cleaning business or a mail box store…

    She’s completely and utterly flaying in shallow water now that Pierce isn’t telling her what to do, Arapio is tied up in legal purgatory, her closes aides are in being investigated for private prison fraud/conflict of interest and AZ Dems are finally smelling blood in the water (both Kyle and McCain are on their last terms; neither one will run again).

    Plus, AZ has early ballot by mail they can’t “jimmy”. The Dems did a great job registering minorities and low-income voters in the last elections. The problem was the Christian fundamentalist/Mormon Latino churches ministry put “fear” into the immigrant population, lying about law enforcement intimidation if they even voted! I digress…

    Brewer is a clown in the clown car; there is no love in the room for her as she is seen as incompetent as well as just plain stupid, like Palin.

    Reply


  • Deborah Montesano on January 27, 2012 at 12:19 pm

    I agree with both Dan and SinghX that Brewer is in over her head. I view this particular encounter more as a product of her ignorance and out-sized sense of herself than as an indication of her racism–though I’m quite cognizant of the racism that she and other Arizona officials do display. (See “Arizona At 100: Ditch the Celebration, http://thepoliticali.blogspot.com/2012/01/arizona-at-100-ditch-celebration.html) Looking at it with an optimistic eye, the NY Times reports today that the encounter may boomerang against the Republicans in the election and help deliver Arizona to Obama.

    Reply


  • RANDALL LEHMANN on January 27, 2012 at 12:28 pm

    WELL SAID SINGHX COULD NOT HAVE SAID IT BETTER!!BREWER SURE IS IN HOT WATER NOW! LETS KEEP THIS THING GOING MAYBE SHE’LL RESIGN!! GO OBAMA 2012!!!

    Reply


  • Jane on January 27, 2012 at 12:33 pm

    If you can’t see it, imagine if a black female gov had done this to George w bush.

    I rest my case.

    Reply


  • Tillie Hoffecker on January 27, 2012 at 12:36 pm

    I know and talk politics with plenty of Republicans. Whenever I get up enough nerve to ask them if their dislike of the president has anything to do with the fact that he’s black…well, methinks they do protest too much. Some of them even hit me with this: “Well, he’s not really black.” I’d say about 90 percent of them are lying when they say it has nothing to do with it. They go on to tell me exactly why it is they dislike him and nine times out of ten it’s based on some lie that Aunt Ethel sent them in an email. It’s my absolute belief that 90% of those who dislike the president do so primarily because of the color of his skin.

    Conversely, I know a handful of Democrats who quit the party when Obama was elected president. It’s rather amusing to listen to them stammer out their reasons for doing so — but I know the real reason.

    You know how the Republicans like to bitch about how the Democrats “rammed” health care through Congress before the newly-elected Republicans took office? I think it’s sort of like that — they want to get as many laws and regulations that favor us white folks on the books before us white folks become a minority.

    Reply


  • Paul on January 27, 2012 at 2:22 pm

    I agree that Brewer was out of line and was showboating to sell her book.

    I have wondered and want to see if you all agree… the Republican attacks on Obama using a telepromter is also race based. Their way of saying he’s not smart enough to talk without help.

    Am I alone on this one?

    Reply


    • Jolene on January 27, 2012 at 4:47 pm

      Of course that’s what they mean! Obama haters try to denigrate him in every way they can, and claiming he can’t speak without a teleprompter is an attempt to deny his obvious intelligence. The haters just can’t stand it! Hope his re-election this year makes their blood pressures rise to dangerous levels.

      Reply


  • galactus6x on January 27, 2012 at 2:32 pm

    Well said Tillie, I and others realized that the desperate Anglos were going to do as much as they an while they have power to keep us down with as many laws and schemes as possible. Their problem is we have been paying attention and their political days are numbered and their demographic days are too. They better hope we treat them better than they have treated us.

    Reply


  • C.L. on January 27, 2012 at 2:57 pm

    The amusing aspect to this whole story is that witnesses to the exchange between the President and Brewer said that PO was his usual calm, courteous self. Talking Points Memo has the quotes from these witnesses (the mayors of Phoenix and Mesa):

    http://tpmmuckraker.talkingpointsmemo.com/2012/01/2nd_mayor_says_obama_wasnt_tense_at_all_during_bre.php

    I suspect that Brewer was either opportunistically trying to drum up more publicity for her poor-selling book or she was under the influence (or both).

    She’s another one that Palin endorsed, by the way. Big surprise…

    Reply


  • 1voice1vote on January 27, 2012 at 3:02 pm

    Way to be a role model, racist Republican Governor Jan Brewer (AZ).

    Kids; this is what we call deplorable and depraved conduct. It is not how we behave at school. We do not aggressively waggle our fingers in another person’s face and then cry wolf. We use our nice manners. This will be on the test.

    Reply


  • sonja on January 27, 2012 at 3:18 pm

    My husband is Mexican American born and raised here in America as well as his father and grandfather. A few yrs back he was pulled over for profiling. As a result it cost us impound fees and court costs and he was not found guilty of anything! I myself am kind of sheltered have lived most of my life thinking things r shiny n pretty. However over the yrs I have come to c the not so pretty side of society. I have learned a great deal of things about our great country. Not make me ashamed to say I am American. America is a melting pot of all nationalities. We should grow as a nation n recognize this and embrace those around us. Racism in America is just about the most ridiculous thing since the fact is we r one nation one race and that is American!

    Reply


  • D. L. MacKenzie on January 27, 2012 at 5:07 pm

    I’ve lived in Arizona for 45 years, and I have followed Jan Brewer quite closely over her career. She is unquestionably the stupidest creature to hold the office, and in a state that elected the ponderously stupid Evan Mecham, that’s saying a lot. She definitely attracts racists, but I can’t go as far as to say she is definitely racist. After all, illegal immigration is down and deportations are up under Obama. That she didn’t give the President a big hug would appear to provide more evidence that she’s an ignoramus rather than racist.

    Reply


  • Mechille on January 27, 2012 at 5:42 pm

    I think that she should have been arrested for pointing her fingers if this had been any other president they would have invented a law so her behind could go to jail. But wait she wouldn’t have done that to another now would she… Ignorant behind.

    Reply


  • nogravity on January 27, 2012 at 7:29 pm

    Maybe she was just loaded. Apparently her nickname in AZ is Otis, named after the Mayberry town drunk.

    http://www.examiner.com/congressional-oversight-in-phoenix/did-tipsy-arizona-governor-wag-finger-presidents-face

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Top of Form

Your

Bottom of Form