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Harold Meyerson

Workers toppled a dictator in Egypt, but might be silenced in Wisconsin

In Egypt, workers are having a revolutionary February. In the United States, by contrast, February is shaping up as the cruelest month workers have known in decades.

The coup de grace that toppled Hosni Mubarak came after tens of thousands of Egyptian workers went on strike beginning last Tuesday. By Friday, when Egypt's military leaders apparently decided that unrest had reached the point where Mubarak had to go, the Egyptians who operate the Suez Canal and their fellow workers in steel, textile and bottling factories; in hospitals, museums and schools; and those who drive buses and trains had left their jobs to protest their conditions of employment and governance.

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Wisconsin's pharaoh tries to silence unions

In Egypt, workers are having a revolutionary February. In the United States, by contrast, February is shaping up as the cruelest month workers have known in decades.

The coup de grace that toppled Hosni Mubarak came after tens of thousands of Egyptian workers went on strike beginning last Tuesday. By Friday, when Egypt's military leaders apparently decided that unrest had reached the point where Mubarak had to go, the Egyptians who operate the Suez Canal and their fellow workers in steel, textile and bottling factories; in hospitals, museums and schools; and those who drive buses and trains had left their jobs to protest their conditions of employment and governance. As Jim Hoagland noted in The Post, Egypt was barreling down the path that Poland, East Germany and the Philippines had taken, the path where workers join student protesters in the streets and jointly sweep away an authoritarian regime.

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Will the GOP embrace immigration reform or continue to ostracize key voters?

Read the census data that have been coming out over the past couple weeks and you're compelled to a stark conclusion: Either the Republican Party changes totally, or it has a rendezvous with extinction.

What the census shows is that America's racial minorities, aggregated together, are on track to become its majority. The Republican Party's response to this epochal demographic change has been to do everything in its power to keep America (particularly its electorate) as white as can be. Republicans have obstructed minorities from voting; required Latinos to present papers if the police ask for them; opposed the Dream Act, which would have conferred citizenship on young immigrants who served in our armed forces or went to college; and called for denying the constitutional right to citizenship to American-born children of undocumented immigrants.

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Republican stonewalling won't close the state budget gap

Republican stonewalling won't close the state budget gap

The GOP's opposition to letting voters decide on Gov. Brown's proposal to extend tax hikes looks less like an expression of their certitude that his plan would fail than a sign of their fears that it would pass.

The role that Republicans in the Legislature play in the great scheme of California government is becoming harder and harder to discern.



They do not legislate; neither do they allow the people of California to legislate at the ballot box. The Republicans are giving negation a bad name.

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What's holding back the U.S. economy?

What ails the economy, various wise men tell us, is that we're not innovating like we used to. Personal computers and the Internet may look like a big deal, but their impact on our lives - and incomes - pales alongside the effect that electric power, the automobile and the airplane had on our 20th-century forebears. Much as onetime California Angels manager Lefty Phillips said of some overhyped rookies, "Our phenoms ain't phenominating."

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Business Is Booming

America's leading corporations have found a way to thrive even if the American economy doesn't recover. This is very, very bad news.

When he was CEO of General Electric, in 1998, Jack Welch pithily summarized his vision for corporate America: "Ideally, you'd have every plant you own on a barge to move with currencies and changes in the economy."

Since then, corporations have discovered that they don't need barges in order to unmoor themselves from the American economy. As corporate profits skyrocket, even as the economy remains stalled in a deep recession, Americans confront a grim new reality: Our corporations don't need us anymore. Half their revenues come from abroad. Their products, increasingly, come from abroad as well.

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Harold Meyerson Named One of Nation’s Top 50 Columnists!

awardIn September, 2009 Atlantic Monthly named Harold Meyerson one of 50 Most Influential Columnists. Calling its list “its all-star team,” Atlantic Monthly’s Top 50 are the most influential commentators in the nation – the columnists and bloggers and broadcast pundits who shape the national debates. Harold Meyerson is honored to be in their midst.

To get a complete list of the country’s Top 50 Idea-meisters, click here.

Harold Meyerson's Book

Harold Meyerson's Book
Who Put the Rainbow in the Wizard of Oz?
Yip Harburg, Lyricist

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