Wednesday, March 14, 2018
► In today’s Seattle Times — Boeing’s 737 hits historic milestone: 10,000 planes produced — Boeing on Tuesday celebrated completing its 10,000th 737 single-aisle jet. More than any other plane, the 737 brought air travel within reach of ordinary Americans. And 50 years after it entered service, its importance to Boeing’s bottom line has never been greater.
► From AP — Some workers want union vote at South Carolina Boeing plant — At issue is whether 178 flight readiness technicians and inspectors at Boeing’s plant in North Charleston can vote on whether to join the union. Boeing says that group is too hard to set different rules for and any union vote should include all 3,000 production employees. The larger group rejected unionization last year.
► In today’s NY Times — Trump’s tariffs make Boeing a potential target in a trade war — President Trump will visit a Boeing plant in St. Louis on Wednesday to celebrate the tax cut his party handed to American companies. But lurking in the background is a clash over trade — one in which Boeing is the most vulnerable target.
ALSO at The Stand — Enforcing trade rules is not a ‘trade war’ (by Stan Sorscher)
EDITOR’S NOTE — It’s not mentioned in this article, but Boeing is a strong supporter of enforcing trade rules via tariffs. Although it was later struck down, Boeing strongly supported a whopping 300 percent tariff on imported Bombardier jets because it believes Canadian government subsidies violate international trade rules. The truth is, the U.S. steel and aluminum industries have been under attack by predatory trade practices for years. Take it away, Real Clear Politics:
“The U.S. economy has been motoring along the past four years, but (steel and aluminum) have been lagging. Not because they are inefficient; they are, in fact, among the most productive in the world. They are instead industries that have been victimized by the Chinese government’s disinterest in reining in its massive overcapacity in these sectors. Chinese overproduction, led by its state-dominated steel companies, floods competing markets directly and indirectly – and that includes our own. The United States imports more steel than any other nation, while our mills operate at only about 75 percent of their capacity. We are absorbing that overcapacity. Because of that, steelworkers operate under regular threat that their jobs might not be there within a year.”
► In today’s Seattle Times — Kent School District to lay off 127 employees, 9 administrators in the next school year — It was not immediately clear what staff positions — ranging from teachers to secretaries to librarians — would be eliminated across the district’s 42 schools.
► From KUOW — Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan specifies budget cut plan — Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan said she plans to ask city departments to trim their budgets for next year. She said that she’ll ask for cuts that could be as much as 5 percent.
► In today’s (Everett) Herald — ‘Bleeding red ink,’ Everett Transit headed for $1.6M deficit — Sales tax provides about 80 percent of the service’s revenue. And Everett’s retail sector has struggled.
► In today’s News Tribune — Longtime Pierce County Republican to retire from Legislature — State Rep. Joyce McDonald previously served on the Pierce County Council.
► In today’s Washington Post — ‘Students have just had enough:’ Walkouts planned across the nation one month after Florida shooting — Students at thousands of schools across the country plan to walk out of class at 10 a.m. Wednesday to protest gun violence and to mark one month since a mass shooting left 17 dead at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla. The nationally organized walkouts, most of which will last 17 minutes in symbolic tribute to the Florida victims, are unprecedented in recent American history.
► From The Hill — Students turn their backs on White House in gun protest
► In today’s Spokesman-Review — Shawn Vestal: ‘We’re really tired of sitting around waiting for the adults’ — Like everyone else in their generation, they learned early and grew up in the shadow of the routine mass shooting. But it’s never felt routine to them. “I think I’ve always been aware that this shouldn’t be happening,” said Sophia Bain, a 17-year-old junior at North Central High School. “This isn’t normal.”
► In today’s NY Times — America has failed its kids on guns. It’s time to let them lead. (editorial) — The nation’s adults must listen to the students walking out of their schools Wednesday to protest gun violence.
► In today’s Washington Post — Gun-trained teacher accidentally discharges firearm in Calif. classroom, injuring student — A teacher who is also a reserve police officer trained in firearm use accidentally discharged a gun Tuesday at Seaside High School in Monterey County, Calif., during a class devoted to public safety. A male student was reported to have sustained non-life-threatening injuries.
► From Politico — Lamb clings to tiny lead with all precincts reporting
► From The Hill — Democrat Conor Lamb declares victory in Pennsylvania race
► From The Hill — GOP not conceding in Pennsylvania race, may seek recount
► In today’s NY Times — Strong performance by Democrat Conor Lamb in Pennsylvania shakes Trump, GOP — Just as they did outside Birmingham and Montgomery, Ala., in December, and Richmond, Va., and Washington, D.C., in November, energized and angry suburban voters were swamping the Trump stalwarts in the more rural parts of those regions, sending a clear message to Republicans around the country. While Republican turnout in a district that Trump won by 20 percentage points was healthy, Democrats showed once again that they could tap unions and other traditionally friendly groups to get their voters out in droves.
ALSO at The Stand — Trumka: Pennsylvania race shows ‘path to power runs through labor movement’
► In today’s Spokesman-Review — Republican enters race for Congress against McMorris Rodgers, Brown — Jered Bonneau, a 31-year-old mental health technician at Eastern State Hospital, rallied for the Bundy family in their standoff with federal officials and will now run under the GOP banner for Eastern Washington’s congressional seat.
► From MassLive — Sen. Elizabeth Warren says bank bill could hurt minority borrowers — The AFL-CIO’s Damon Silvers and Marc Morial, president of the National Urban League, also raised concerns about the bank bill provision. Silvers said he could not think of a “more outrageous provision to insert in a bill,” contending it would effectively repeal the Community Reinvestment Act and the requirement that financial institutions have fair lending with communities of color.
ALSO at The Stand — Senate about to put economy at risk by dismantling bank rules — Will Washington’s Democratic Sens. Patty Murray and Maria Cantwell vote for this? Stay tuned. In the meantime, sign this AFL-CIO petition urging them to vote NO!
► From TPM — The last best chance to Trump-proof ACA is slipping away — Next Friday’s omnibus budget deadline may be Congress’ last best chance for passing a bill to stabilize the Affordable Care Act’s volatile individual market and prevent premiums from shooting up just before November’s midterm elections.
► In today’s Spokesman-Review — Trump’s pick for CIA tied to torture lawsuit involving Spokane psychologists — Gina Haspel, President Trump’s pick to head the CIA, was at the center of a legal dispute regarding her role in a high-profile torture case involving a pair of Spokane psychologists.
► In today’s Seattle Times — Partisan House report on Russia should not stop special counsel probe (editorial) — Investigations into Russia’s attack on our democracy by Special Counsel Robert Mueller and the Senate are more important than ever, now that the GOP-controlled House Intelligence Committee has abdicated its responsibility.
► From Bloomberg — McDonald’s high-tech makeover is stressing workers out — For Dudley Dickerson, the mobile-app orders were the last straw. McDonald’s Corp. has been updating with new technology, delivery, a revamped menu and curbside pickup. But the chain’s “Experience of the Future” effort could backfire. Employees are handling more tasks, in many cases, they say, without pay raises or adequate staffing. So Dickerson, 23, handed over his spatula for the last time. “They added a lot of complicated things,” Dickerson said in an interview. “It makes it harder for the workers.” … With unemployment so low, turnover is becoming a problem. Workers are walking rather than dealing with new technologies and menu options. The result: customers will wait longer.
► From Time — This CEO makes 900 times more than his typical employee — Ohio-based Marathon Petroleum Corp., the second-largest oil refiner in the U.S., paid CEO Gary Heminger $19.7 million last year. Its CEO-to-worker pay ratio is extraordinarily high because many employees are part-timers at its Speedway gas station and convenience stores.
► From The Onion — Proud billionaire helps young son open first offshore account — “These are the kinds of things you live for as a dad: getting to watch your little boy start funneling vast sums of untraceable wealth through a shell corporation of his very own,” said hedge fund billionaire Seymour Gansthorpe. “I’m just glad I got to help guide him through this important rite of passage. He may not realize it now, but laundering money through quasi-legal banking operations in the middle of the Indian Ocean is a skill he’ll use for the rest of his life.”
The Stand posts links to Washington state and national news of interest every weekday morning by 10 a.m.