Local Commentaries

Bill Knight – December 5
11:12 am
Wed December 4, 2013

Lessons From Man’s Best Friend

Bill Knight

As the possibility of a new government shutdown appears this winter, the lack of even superficial relationships on Capitol Hill makes one long for some positive parallel in constructive interactions – even connections that may be partly illusions.

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Bill Knight – November 28
11:00 am
Wed November 27, 2013

The Prophets of Profits

Bill Knight

This week we give thanks for what we have, even while recognizing the work ahead to achieve and accept other graces. As we celebrate Thanksgiving, counting our blessings, we may also take comfort in the action of a man whose business is blessings. And CEOs of U.S. corporations may also take notice.

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Bill Knight – November 21
1:14 pm
Wed November 20, 2013

Taxpayers Subsidizing Fast Food Profits

Bill Knight

Two months after a national strike against restaurants by workers demanding a raise, there’s a lot still left out of coverage of the disagreement.

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Bill Knight – November 14
10:24 am
Wed November 13, 2013

A Hike in the Minimum Wage is Overdue

Bill Knight

Like most Americans, I’ve worked minimum-wage jobs. As an adolescent and a young adult, I worked on a farm, in a grocery store, and for a carpenter, and co-workers weren’t all teens. A grouchy guy in his 40s who smoked unfiltered Camels and swung a hammer like it was a Stradivarius pounded nails alongside me; a single mom was head cashier, knew the supermarket better than the boss, and mothered bag boys as well as ran the register.

At each workplace, the employer would’ve paid less if they could have.

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Bill Knight – November 7
11:56 am
Wed November 6, 2013

Challenges to Overcome Before Mid-Term Elections

Bill Knight

One year from this week – on Tuesday, Nov. 4, 2014 – people will vote on all 435 Representatives in Congress, a third of the 100 U.S. Senators, and dozens of governors, and labor is choosing where to use its resources.

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Bill Knight – October 31
6:12 pm
Wed October 30, 2013

Public Pensions & Corporate Subsidies

Bill Knight

Pension foes have shifted public attention to accounting so retiree benefits might be shifted to protect or expand corporate subsidies, like the $24 million that Archer Daniels Midland demands from the state of Illinois, according to a new report. It says the anti-pension campaign blames state or local budget problems exclusively on public pensions – pensions that were underfunded by legislatures for years so the money could be spent elsewhere, such as on corporate subsidies or politically popular tax cuts.

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Bill Knight – October 24
12:45 pm
Wed October 23, 2013

Dr Seuss and the Teapublicans

When U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, the first-term Texas Republican, in the run-up to the Tea Party-engineered government shutdown included in his 21-hour filibuster a reading of Dr. Seuss’ “Green Eggs and Ham,” he may have been trying to show what he has in common with everyday Americans. He actually showed his ignorance.

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Bill Knight – October 17
1:42 pm
Wed October 16, 2013

Climate Change Should Top Washington’s Agenda

Bill Knight

Too many people of power in government and big business deny humanity’s influence on climate change, so the continent’s biggest progressive forces are stepping up their involvement and a best-selling author is encouraging that interaction. According to a new report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change – its fifth such assessment – there’s no doubt that Earth is warming at an accelerating rate, human activity caused it (with 95 percent certainty), and the last 30 years have been the hottest decades since the mid-19th century,

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Heather McIlvaine-Newsad - October 11
11:31 am
Thu October 10, 2013

The Affordable Care Act and Social Injustice

Heather McIlvaine-Newsad
Credit Rich Egger

My family and I have spent the past couple of weeks visiting our doctors. All four of us have had our annual physicals, eye and dental exams. Each time I enter a doctor’s office I am grateful that we have access to affordable health insurance. There was a time not long ago, when I was a graduate student and my husband was working full time, that we were uninsured. Like many people in this country, our monthly income barely covered the rent and groceries, let alone “luxuries” like health insurance.  

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Bill Knight - October 10
11:42 am
Wed October 9, 2013

Decent Wages Benefit Everyone

Bill Knight

Washington, D.C., Mayor Vincent Gray recently vetoed that City Council’s passage of a living-wage ordinance -- the Large Retailer Accountability Act, which would have required District big-box retailers such as Walmart to pay workers a living wage of $12.50 an hour, but it renewed debate about at least raising the minimum wage and revived conversations about a living wage.

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