Tidbits - February 27, 2014

Reader Comments - Ukraine; Venezuela; Chokwe Lumumba; UAW-Volkswagen; North Carolina; State Pensions; Wisconsin; Prisons and Solitary Confinement; Jordan Davis; Announcements - Freedom Rider Diary - Book Signings - Coast-to-Coast - Mar 3 - 10; Celebration of Working Women & International Women's Day!

Wisconsin’s Legacy for Unions

Steven Greenhouse
The New York Times
Wisconsin was the first state to grant public-sector unions the right to negotiate contracts. Before Gov. Gaylord Nelson signed that law in 1959, only unionized workers in private companies had a government-protected right to bargain collectively. The Wisconsin idea soon spread around the country. Act 10 is an about-face, and Gov. Walker and his Republican supporters see it as a tough-minded strategy that other states can follow. History repeating itself, if in reverse.

Scott Walker, Eyeing 2016, Faces Fallout From Probes as Ex-Aide’s E-mails Are Released

By Rosalind S. Helderman
Washington Post
Even if Walker emerges from the e-mail release unscathed, he faces an additional inquiry from state prosecutors, who are believed to be looking into whether his successful campaign in a 2012 recall election illegally coordinated with independent conservative groups that poured millions of dollars into Wisconsin. That inquiry could create political challenges if it hobbles key campaign aides as Walker gears up for an expected vigorous reelection challenge in November.

The growing silence of 'union radio'

Mackenzie Weinger
There are a number of talk radio shows around the country covering — and funded by — organized labor that are still up and running, but like the labor movement as a whole, what remains is a far cry from the time when unions and the concerns of workers were a dominant part of the media landscape. The dozen or so shows that still offer labor and union concerns to radio listeners are mostly local, based in the traditional union strongholds of Wisconsin and Pennsylvania.