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A carbon-neutral US?

This is our first glance at what may end up becoming the proper climate change legislation of the Green New Deal. It's emphatically not finished yet, but it is still an interesting start.

Some key takeaways:

Updated rankings for the 2020 Democrats

Updated rankings for the 2020 Democrats after the 6th and final debate for the year. This time only seven candidates made the cut which makes things easier to talk about, but whether many people are paying attention this close to Christmas/just after Donald Trump's impeachment remains to be seen.

Housing and Land Costs vs Minimum Wage: An Example from Carlton

Sarah Morgan recently discovered an old newspaper from 1969 which contained the following advertisement:

It seems appropriate to compare this will minimum wage rates.

Minimum Wage Australia, 1969 c$1.39
Rent of a 2 bedroom flat, Drummond Street Carlton: $21 pw.
Hours worked to pay for 1 week's rent: 15.12

December Democrat Debate

So, thoughts about the debate:

First, nobody watched it. I think the candidates knew this, because they got a little goofy.

Yang was very likeable and entertaining. He also spoke for an entire nation when he gaped speechlessly at one of the worst questions ever asked in a presidential debate, about who they would ask for forgiveness and/or who they would give gifts to.

Indonesia: Free jailed trade unionist - stop attacks on workers

On 20 August this year Rio Wijaya, a trade unionist from the Indonesian dockers' union, was brutally attacked by security guards at Hutchison Port's terminal in Jakarta.

Later, he was arrested and detained under false allegations of defaming and assaulting the security guards.

What happened to Rio is part and parcel of an increasingly anti-union climate at the biggest container port in Indonesia.

Albanian Mineworkers Sacked for Forming a Union

Less than a month ago, mineworkers in Bulqiza (a region of eastern Albania) formed a trade union. Five days later, their employer -- AlbChrome -- responded by sacking the union chairman. The workers walked off the job, demanding his reinstatement as well as higher wages and more generally a respect for workers rights. The police were called in, and other union leaders and activists were arrested and questioned.

South Korea: Protect Safe Rates for Truck Drivers

In South Korea, 1,000 people die annually due to truck crashes because big corporations like Samsung and Hyundai force low rates onto truck drivers.

Those drivers are forced to work long hours, overload their vehicles, and drive at dangerous speed.

Korean truck drivers work over twice the annual average for OECD countries, but as 'owner drivers' they are entirely unprotected by labour law.

After years of struggle, their union finally won historic Safe Rates legislation last year.

Poland: Unionists Sacked by Castorama for Being Unionists

Ten union leaders in Poland employed by a company called Castorama have been sacked because they dared to speak out.

The trade union NSZZ Solidarnosc Commerce had embarked upon an organising drive among Castorama workers when the company dismissed union chairperson Wojciech Kasprzyk and others.

The company says that they were engaged in "activities to the detriment of the company" and "damaging the employer's image".

What the workers say is that they were using the Internet, including social media, to help workers and get them organised.

Hard Truths with Major Opposition

Some hard truths, all of which are backed by expert consensus, and all of which encounter major opposition:

Let Yang Speak

For the record, Andrew Yang is (and has been) polling in the top 6 candidates, yet they seldom let him speak during the debates. They consistently give him the least amount of speaking time. MSNBC, which donated tons to Buttigieg and Biden, gives its favored candidates all the speaking time in the debates so that you won't know the other options. Why do they not let Andrew Yang speak?

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