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US jobless claims edge downward

WASHINGTON — US jobless claims fell by 22,000 last week, official figures showed Thursday, pointing to an improving labor market. Claims fell to 391,000 for the week ending February 19, a level which if sustained, would indicate a definite improvement of the jobs market, a Labor Department official said. Economists…

Hundreds rally at Iowa Capitol over labor laws

Over 500 activists gathered at the Iowa Statehouse in Des Moines to show solidarity with the protesters in Wisconsin and rally against legislation that would limit state workers’ bargaining rights. “This is not an assault on public workers,” Ken Sagar, president of the Iowa Federation of Labor, told The Associated…

Montanans protest GOP ‘assault’ on environmental and labor programs

More than a thousand Montanans gathered in front of the state Capitol of Helena on Monday to protest budgetary plans to cut health, educational, environmental and labor programs while pushing for corporate tax cuts. Republicans in Montana are pushing legislation to gut the Montana Environmental Policy Act, reduce workers’ compensation…

Wis. unrest exposed GOP strategy to split lower classes, liberal author says

The labor unrest in Wisconsin exposed the Republican Party’s plan to essentially divide-and-conquer the lower classes in America, a liberal author recently wrote. “The Republican strategy is to split the vast middle and working class – pitting unionized workers against non-unionized, public-sector workers against non-public, older workers within sight of…

Wisconsin labor protests ‘like Cairo,’ GOP’s Paul Ryan exclaims

WASHINGTON – In Exhibit A, millions of people protesting a 30-year autocrat’s tyrannical regime. In Exhibit B, several thousand demonstrators railing against a bill curtailing public employee union rights. Both significant, but not really comparable. Wisconsin Rep. Paul Ryan, a rising star in the Republican Party, on Thursday equated the…

Jobless claims rise 25,000 last week

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – New U.S. claims for unemployment benefits rose more than expected last week, according to a government report on Thursday that still pointed at gradual labor market recovery. Initial claims for state unemployment benefits increased 25,000 to a seasonally adjusted 410,000, the Labor Department said, partially reversing the…

Anti-tax activist forgot his past alliances with progressives

An anti-tax activist told an audience at a conservative forum recently that the left on the political spectrum consisted of nothing more than “competing parasites,” not “friends and allies” of the right. “If we say no to tax increases, stop throwing money, they will cheerfully gnaw at the guy sitting…

US Chamber lobbyists map strategies to discredit progressive critics

Report claims Chamber hired firm hacked by ‘Anonymous’ WASHINGTON – Lobbyists for the US Chamber of Commerce have been working with firms to develop methods to deceive and discredit the Chamber’s most vocal progressive opponents, according to documents obtained by ThinkProgress. Lee Fang of the liberal blog reports that the…

New jobless claims tumble to 2-year low

WASHINGTON – The number of new claims for US unemployment insurance tumbled last week to a two-year low, according to official data Thursday, offering hope for the troubled labor market. The Labor Department said initial jobless claims fell to a seasonally adjusted 383,000 in the week ending February 5, down…

Report: Wal-Mart actually kills jobs, creates taxpayer burdens

NEW YORK – Wal-Mart’s lengthy struggle to open in New York City has hit fresh problems — a controversial report that said America’s biggest discounter does not just sell cheap, it makes neighborhoods poorer. The report concludes that Wal-Mart, the biggest U.S. private employer, kills jobs rather than creates them,…

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