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Worst week yet ● Dear Airbus… ● The day after ● Who is the Boogie Man?

Friday, October 30, 2020




► LIVE from the Seattle Times — Coronavirus daily news update, Oct. 30 — The latest count of COVID-19 cases in Washington totals 105,557 infections (7-day average of new infections per day: 669) and 2,359 deaths (7-day average of deaths per day: 9)

► From the Washington Post — Health-care workers file lawsuit against OSHA, accusing agency of failing to keep them safe — Unions representing hundreds of thousands of nurses and health-care workers filed a lawsuit against the Occupational Safety and Health Administration on Thursday, alleging that the agency is violating its duties to keep workers safe by failing to issue an infectious-disease standard to protect health-care workers during the pandemic. The lawsuit was filed by the American Federation of Teachers, American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, the Washington State Nurses Association and the United Nurses Associations of California with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit. It alleges OSHA’s decision not to set safety standards about infectious diseases is “unreasonable and unlawful” and a violation of federal law that requires the agency to issue standards for significant health risks.

► From the Washington Post — As pandemic raged and thousands died, government regulators cleared most nursing homes of infection-control violations — The government inspectors deployed by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services during the first six months of the crisis cleared nearly 8 in 10 nursing homes of any infection-control violations even as the deadliest pandemic to strike the United States in a century sickened and killed thousands.

► From the NY Times — United States records its worst week yet for coronavirus cases — It’s not just a few areas driving the surge, as was the case early on. Half of U.S. counties saw new cases peak during the past month. Almost a third saw a record in the past week.

► From the Washington Post — Coronavirus cases are on the rise in every swing state — Coronavirus cases are surging in every competitive state before Election Day, offering irrefutable evidence against Trump’s closing argument that the pandemic is nearly over and restrictions are no longer necessary. In the 13 states deemed competitive by the Cook Political Report, the weekly average of new cases reported daily has jumped 45 percent over the past two weeks, from fewer than 21,000 on Oct. 14 to more than 30,000 on Oct. 28.

► From The Hill — Nearly 60 percent disapprove of Trump’s big rallies during pandemic

► From Politico — Pence absent from COVID-19 planning calls for more than a month




► From the (Everett) Herald — Union leaders: As Boeing shrinks, what about Airbus? — Washington shouldn’t shy away from marketing its top-notch aerospace sector to a broader audience — including Boeing’s archrival Airbus, union leaders told lawmakers this week. Given an opportunity to recruit the European jet maker, officials should do so, IAM 751 President Jon Holden told the state Senate Special Committee on Economic Recovery on Tuesday… Weathering the devastating economic downturn requires fresh faces, agreed SPEEA Executive Director Ray Goforth. “The focus of the Legislature should really be about how to attract additional work, whether it’s coming from the supply chain, or even from Airbus,” he said.

► From the Seattle Times — Boeing is too big to fail — but that doesn’t mean pain isn’t ahead (by Jon Talton) — In theory, at least, Boeing is indeed too big to fail. Allowing that outcome is not in the national interest. In practice, that doesn’t mean Boeing would necessarily come out of the MAX and pandemic crises as the clever bean-counter Chicago company, much less the engineering-focused Seattle company of old that gave us such wonders as the 747 and the Apollo lunar rover. With Boeing burning through $55 million a day in the third quarter, even its massive war chest might not be enough. If the pandemic continues to ravage the airline industry and a bleak competitive outlook against Airbus drags on, being too big to fail might require nationalization. This wouldn’t be the first time such a dire remedy was required.




► From the Seattle Times — Early data suggests some schools can safely reopen, Washington state health officials say — Bringing students back into school buildings for in-person classes does not seem to spur significant coronavirus transmission, Washington state health officials say, suggesting that buildings can reopen so long as strong health and safety measures are in place. The data the state has collected provide a limited snapshot of coronavirus risk in Washington schools. Because so few districts are teaching face to face, it’s unclear if the pattern would hold up if more districts were to reopen.

► From KING 5 — 20,000 elderly or disabled residents could lose funding due to Washington state budget shortfall — The Department of Social and Health Services has been told to examine what a 15% cut would look like. For thousands of Washingtonians, it’s dire.

► From the Columbia Basin Herald — Rep. Dent returns home after COVID-19 hospitalization

► Meanwhile, south of here… from KGW — Oregon OSHA to implement new COVID-19 workplace standards — State health officials reported 29 of Oregon’s 600 COVID-19-related deaths were connected to workplace outbreaks. According to the Oregon Health Authority, just under 8,000 people have gotten the virus through their job; that’s nearly 20% of all reported cases in Oregon. Oregon Occupational Safety and Health Administration hopes a new set of temporary emergency rules will help turn the tide and build upon current guidelines set by the Oregon Health Authority.




► From the News Tribune — Put up or shut up, Pierce County Council Republicans. Here’s a good plan for mental health tax. (by Matt Driscoll) — At this point, more excuses will only reveal the truth. If our elected leaders don’t act now, they never had any intention of doing so. It was all about politics, not helping people.




► From KING 5 — Elections officials warn last-minute Washington voters could face hours-long lines — In-person voter registration in Washington state is possible through Election Day, but officials warn voters not to delay.

The StandDon’t wait. VOTE NOW! — Here’s everything you need to know, including which candidates have earned labor’s support.

► From the Spokesman-Review — Private website wrongly listed ballots as rejected

► From the NY Times — 2016 nonvoters, a key prize for Biden and Trump, turn out in droves — In Pennsylvania and other battlegrounds, both parties are succeeding in coaxing infrequent voters off the sidelines. The all-important question is who does it better.

TODAY at The StandJoin AFL-CIO’s Trumka on Friday as GOTV home stretch begins

► From the Washington Post — Trump accidentally admits he’s abandoned working women (by Catherine Rampell) — At a rally Tuesday, Trump made his closing argument to the suburban women unpersuaded by his dog whistles and kidnapped migrant children: Hey, at least I’m helping your hubbies find jobs. “And you know what else? I’m also getting your husbands — they want to get back to work, right?” he said. “They want to get back to work. We’re getting your husbands back to work, and everybody wants it.”

► From the NY Times — The Day after Election Day (by Ron Susskind) — America will probably awaken on Nov. 4 into uncertainty. Whatever else happens, there is no doubt that President Trump is ready for it. I’ve spent the last month interviewing some two dozen officials and aides, several of whom are still serving in the Trump administration. Several of them are in current posts in intelligence, law enforcement or national security and are focused on the concurrent activities of violent, far-right and white supremacy groups that have been encouraged by the president’s words and actions. They are worried that the president could use the power of the government — the one they all serve or served within — to keep himself in office or to create favorable terms for negotiating his exit from the White House. Like many other experts inside and outside the government, they are also concerned about foreign adversaries using the internet to sow chaos, exacerbate divisions and undermine our democratic process.

The StandRegister for WSLC’s ‘Defend Democracy’ training on Sunday — The Washington State Labor Council, AFL-CIO invites leaders, staffers and rank-and-file activists from all affiliated unions to attend the first in a series of trainings related to the election and beyond: “Defend Democracy: Protect Our Communities.” It will be held from 11 noon this Sunday, Nov. 1 via Zoom. Join WSLC President Larry Brown and WSLC Secretary Treasurer April Sims in preparing Washington’s labor movement to take action after the Nov. 3 election in the event of a Biden win, a Trump win, or the likely scenario of an election outcome that is delayed until the unusually high number of mail-in ballots are counted in the days following Election Day. Click here to register for this training.




► From Politico — Jobless Americans face debt crunch without more federal aid as bills come due — A new phase of the economic crisis is looming for the winner of Tuesday’s presidential election: potentially massive defaults by jobless Americans on consumer loans as the chances for more federal relief this year diminish. Both Trump and Biden have called for robust new rescue packages for an economy still suffering from the pandemic, but Congress’s inability to agree on key issues such as the size of unemployment benefits has kept the talks at an impasse for months. Now, millions of Americans are running out of money and will face hard choices between food purchases and payments on rent, credit cards and student loans.




► Happy Halloween from the Entire Staff of The Stand!

The Boogie Man is an imaginary evil character that punishes naughty children for their misbehavior. He has no specific appearance, and conceptions of him vary drastically by household and culture, but the common denominator is that he’s frightening. Also frightening: the clothes that disco musicians wore in the 1970s. In the case of KC and the Sunshine Band, their “Boogie Man” was Miami DJ Robert W. Walker, who was given that moniker by KC (Harry Wayne Casey) to thank him for giving “Get Down Tonight” lots of airtime and launching the band’s career. We’re pretty that “boogie” is that context referred to that era’s disco-funk genre of dance music, and not to anything scary. Enjoy!


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