Connecticul school shooting

The only thing to ask is when will we ban handguns and automatic weapons?  How many have to die?  My thoughts and prayers are with the victims — but let’s not just try to comfort them and ourselves with those words.  Let’s do something and ban guns.

Thom Hartmann notes that shootings go up as economic inequality goes up and mental health services are unavailable.

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Michigan

What has happened in Michigan is tragic, especially given the history of the 1937 GM sit down strike in Flint, Michigan where workers finally won some hard earned benefits.  See http://www.historicalvoices.org/flint/ for the story.  Right to work is not right to work.  For example, I am a member of a faculty union at a state univ. in Ohio (not yet a right to work state, thankfully) — the union provides bargaining for all of the tenure track and tenured faculty at my univ., whether they are members of the union or not.  So every faculty member benefits from the protection of our salaries and benefits through negotiation.  (we don’t get every thing we want — you have to negotiate).  Every faculty member at my univ. has to pay the part of the dues that pay for the negotiation.  That is just fair.  They don’t have to be a member of the union, however it is better to be, because then you can vote on how to negotiate and really, most of our dues goes to negotiation anyway.  Just as the administration pays for negotiators, we faculty pay for the people who negotiate for us.  If we were a right to work state, faculty could keep their money, not join the union or pay for the negotiations, but they would benefit from the negotiations anyway.  So, right to work creates freeloaders who benefit without paying.  That’s not fair.  No one if forced to join a union, but it is to your great advantage to do so.

Please see Ezra Klein on “right to work?”  http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/wonkblog/wp/2012/12/12/the-misleading-framing-of-right-to-work/.   My union has made sure my salary has not hit the floor and has held the line on health benefits, without which I would be dead, since I am a leukemia survivor.  There are things the union cannot fix, such as the general attack on state universities, especially the liberal arts, which are seen by the right wing as too critical of capitalism and irrelevant.  But unions are important and they benefit non-unionized workers as well by raising the floor.

Just saw this as well:  http://www.nsfwcorp.com/dispatch/right-to-work

Yea Wal-Mart workers!  I refuse to shop at Walmart because of how they are harming the worlds’ workers and our entire economy.  See http://letstalkbooksandpolitics.blogspot.com/2011/01/wal-mart-damage-it-has-done-to-society.html

Post 2

I haven’t even started this blog, except to set it up.  But I need to start writing and perhaps even try to publish a bit from my perspective.  Who knows?  Or perhaps just vent.  Will be back later.  Have to deal with giving/grading finals.

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