Monthly Archives: December 2011

Public scorn for U.S. House GOP posturing leads to last minute tax deal

Boehner said the Senate tax-cut bill won’t pass – public outcry results in House GOP retreat

Thursday media coverage of the payroll tax cut extension coverage was at a fever pitch—even outlets that usually criticize Obama Administration rhetoric, goals, vision, and economic policy were calling out the partisan posturing from the House GOP caucus.
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Union Dues?

Union Life, courtesy of BCTD

One of the things often thrown up as a reason to avoid union membership is “dues.” They vary from place to place, but in general terms $1/day or so is not a huge burden when you understand what it buys you.

A brief video from the Building and Construction Trades Department (BCTD) helps put it all into perspective.

Soundbite: Life in the Trades

featured image
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cell images: Caterpillar cab for IUOE Local 49

49 Cat 340DL Interior

49 Cat 340DL Interior

Zielger is the MN Cat dealerThe view out from the cab of a Caterpillar. Nothing says Heavy Equipment quite the way a Cat™ does.

Now it’s easy to put on your Android, iPhone, etc., and show your 49er pride.
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cell phone images: Local 49 logo basic black

IUOE Local 49 logo

IUOE Local 49 logo

Local 49 logo pulling our weight

Pulling our weight!

Two similar choices, in two popular sizes for smartphone background wallpaper, the 480×800 favored by Android users and also at 640×960 which is scaled for iPhone screens.
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cell phone image: 49 in brass on blue-to-black granite

A simple Local 49 logoThis simple image is available in two sizes that work nicely with iPhones (640×960) and Androids (480×800) as well as other smartphones. Pick whichever size suits you.
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Straight talk about the Keystone XL Oil pipeline

Keystone delay has Canada pondering China oil deal

Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper said Monday he had concerns the $7-billion Keystone XL pipeline might not win political approval in the U.S., and added that Canada should be looking outside the United States for markets.

“I am very serious about selling our oil off this continent, selling our energy products off to Asia. I think we have to do that.”
Stephen Harper
Prime Minister of Canada
via CTV National News

Common sense tells us that we’re not done using oil in the U.S., let alone the rest of the world. We have a ways to go to convert, although alternative fuels, wind turbines, and solar arrays are starting to have an impact. We know, and both pundits and politicians talk about, the critical nature of energy independence, and there’s no question that Canadian oil reserves are a strategic asset for North America.
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Has the U.S. House of Representatives lost its collective mind?

Boehner says the Senate tax-cut bill won’t pass…

Well this took an unexpected turn, with House Republicans apparently deciding to ask for even more.

Saturday morning 89 Senators had supported ta stop-gap deal, which included extending the tax cuts, a so-called “Doc fix” regarding Medicare payment rates, unemployment insurance, and the Keystone decision acceleration which House Speaker John Boehner insisted had to be in the final bill, but with the Senate already gone from DC but now evidently Boehner doesn’t think it’s worth bringing the measure up for a vote.

In our opinion:
Stay tuned. Gridlock has become more common in DC, obviously. But: Odds of the GOP letting the tax cut expire because the House GOP caucus isn’t communicating effectively just aren’t worth betting on – John Boehner has been in politics a long time, and he knows this would look really, really bad to most of us.

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