The Stand

NLRB, doctors waiting, Cantwell’s free pass…

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N.L.R.B.

 

► In The Hill — NLRB chairwoman departs; political fight looms — The departing chairwoman of the National Labor Relations Board won praise from the nation’s biggest labor group Saturday as she leaves a panel that’s facing key vacancies and an uncertain future.

► From Bloomberg — Obama jobs push collides with NLRB complaint — While the case pivots narrowly on whether Boeing retaliated against Seattle-area union members by citing past strikes in moving work to a nonunion state, Obama’s critics have recast it as meddling with a growing employer in a recovery with too few new jobs.

► At MediaMatters.org — Just Plane False: NY Times columnist attacks NLRB to taking action against Boeing — Op-ed columnist Joe Nocera pushed a series of falsehoods about the National Labor Relations Board case against Boeing to baselessly attack Democrats’ commitment to job creation.

EDITOR’S NOTE — This is long, but well worth the read as it deconstructs and thoroughly refutes the deliberate myths being spread about the case by right-wing partisans.

 


BOEING

 

► In the Seattle Times — Long-delayed 787 wins FAA approval to enter service — “Despite the fact that this airplane might be a little late, this will be an airplane that changes the game,” Boeing Commercial Airplanes President and CEO Jim Albaugh said at a Friday morning ceremony in Everett marking the FAA certification. He said he thinks customers will forgive Boeing for the delay once they receive the planes.

► In the P.S. Business Journal — 777 chief plans to speed up production, not mess with success — Launched in 1990, the 777 has been everything Boeing would like all its aircraft to be. In contrast to the three-years-late 787, the Triple 7 came together smoothly, the design concepts were nearly perfect, and the first delivery, to United Airlines in 1995, was right on schedule.

 


STATE GOVERNMENT

 

► In today’s Olympian — Doctors waiting on state provider — Eight months into an insurance company’s contract to manage the most popular plan for state employees and retirees, doctors are waiting to be paid for their work. One retiree said her doctors have gone unpaid for 18 medical visits this year. Another doctor’s office said it’s still waiting on bills submitted as far back as January, the month that Regence BlueShield took over administration of claims for the state’s Uniform Medical Plan.

► From AP — Gregoire staff lacks diversity — Gregoire’s staffing selections have prolonged a trend that runs contrary to her vow to make diversity one of the chief initiatives of her administration. Minorities now account for more than one-quarter of Washington residents, but Gregoire’s entire senior staff is white and her cabinet of 26 has only two people of another race.

► In today’s Olympian — State worker salaries are a sad reflection of our priorities (editorial) — The notion that as the chief executive of the state of Washington, the governor earns less money – sometimes millions less – than about 1,000 other state employees, is a head scratcher. And the fact that coaches top the list – despite the source of their pay – draws societal priorities into serious question. It’s clear we value sports over academics and that’s not right.

► In the Spokesman-Review — Some legislators opt to cut pay in solidarity — About half of the 15 members of the Spokane-area legislative delegation have volunteered for the same 3%  pay cut they imposed on state workers. Republican Rep. John Ahern said he doesn’t plan to ask for a pay cut, but he is donating 3% or more to charities, including his church, the Boy Scouts and organizations that oppose abortion.

 


ELECTIONS

 

► In today’s (Everett) Herald — Giving Cantwell a pass might boost 2 GOP hopefuls (Jerry Cornfield column) — Republican Reagan Dunn figures his chances of becoming Washington’s next attorney general improve if his party doesn’t put up much of a fight to prevent U.S. Sen. Maria Cantwell’s re-election in 2012.

► AT TPM — Republicans lock down Town Halls to stifle critics — All across the country, Republican members of Congress have done their best to duck their critics this August, traditionally the month when town halls can become heated and policy agendas shifted. But with congressional and Republican approval ratings way, way down, it seems the GOP is preoccupied with quieting those who might criticize them over facing the music back home.

 


LOCAL

 

► In the Seattle Times — Many teacher, school staff contracts still up in the air — In many cases, they are wrestling with how to absorb more than $1 billion in state funding cuts — including $179 million in salary reductions. In other cases — Bellevue, for instance — where the contracts have expired, unions have had an even tougher time fighting for wages and benefits.

► In today’s Bellingham Herald — Gateway Pacific regulatory process still in slow motion — The process for determining the environmental impacts of the Gateway Pacific Terminal coal and bulk cargo pier still may be months away from beginning in earnest, a state official said Thursday. While SSA Marine began the lengthy permitting process for the Cherry Point project almost six months ago, the state has yet to begin the process of selecting a consultant to oversee the crucial environmental impact statement process.

► In today’s Daily News — Hundreds seek open positions at Longview Fibre — Several hundred job seekers lined up at the AWPPW union hall in Longview hoping to be one of the handful picked for jobs at Longview Fibre Paper and Packaging. Fibre will hire five hourly employees every month for the next several months to fill openings and replace retirees.

 


NATIONAL

 

► In the NY Times — Lines blurring between candidates, PACs with unlimited cash — Most of this year’s presidential candidates are now backed by one or more dedicated Super PACs. Unlike the broad-based independent groups backing multiple candidates that flooded last year’s Congressional elections with negative advertising — playing a role similar to that of traditional party committees — the new groups are each dedicated to the election of a single candidate.

► From Reuters — Obama picks labor expert Krueger as top economist — Princeton University labor economist Alan Krueger expertise in labor-market issues is in keeping with the administration’s efforts to underscore a focus on jobs.

► In The Hill — Perry: Social Security is a ‘monstrous lie’ — “It is a Ponzi scheme for these young people. The idea that they’re working and paying into Social Security today, that the current program is going to be there for them, is a lie.” He has suggested a willingness to means-test the benefits.

EDITOR’S NOTE — Of course, right-wing conservatives like Perry are doing their best to make sure Social Security’s long-term solvency is in jeopardy by refusing to consider the simple, fairest fix: lifting the cap.

 


TODAY’S MUST-READ

 

► In today’s Washington Post — Wanted: More bite from Obama the Great Nibbler (Dana Milbank column) — Without bolder action on the economy, AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka says, “I think (President Obama) doesn’t become a leader anymore, and he’s being a follower.” This is harsh criticism of a Democratic president from a natural ally — and it’s backed up by labor’s plans to create its own “super PAC” rather than give money to the Democrats. The criticism is justified, as the former miner outlined it, because Obama is on his way to a failed presidency if he doesn’t change course with the rollout of his new jobs program next month.

 


The Stand posts links to Washington state and national news of interest every weekday morning by 9 a.m. Make this electronic “clip service” your first stop each morning! These links are functional on the date of posting, but sometimes expire.


 

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