OMAHA, NE – Elizabeth Warren, who has emerged as a strong voice for true Progressives in America, has done it again by introducing legislation that would ban credit checks on job applicants. It is about damn time! The legislation is called the Equal Employment For All Act and was co-authored with 6 other Senators; Senators Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.), Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.), and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.).  And why not?  Why should an unemployed American, who is deep in debt, be rejected for a job that would clean up the very credit that is preventing them from getting that job? Especially when Wall Street gets away with destroying a global economy, why punish the American worker and consumer for something that isn’t entirely in their control?  Senator Warren states in her press release, “A bad credit rating is far more often the result of unexpected medical costs, unemployment, economic downturns, or other bad breaks than it is a reflection on an individual’s character or abilities.” Warren 12/17/2013

Research in the past has shown credit reports to be increasingly inaccurate, why should your employment be dependent on something with a high potential to be erroneous?  The press release from Warren’s office mentioned a Federal Trade Commission study that revealed many Americans, 1 in 5, had errors in their credit reports. They were errors significant enough that they affect the amount a consumer will pay for a car loan, insurance and even affect jobs they could qualify for, “Overall, the congressionally mandated study on credit report accuracy found that one in five consumers had an error on at least one of their three credit reports.” FTC 02/11/2013

The FTC report also found: “One in four consumers identified errors on their credit reports that might affect their credit scores. One in five consumers had an error that was corrected by a credit reporting agency (CRA) after it was disputed, on at least one of their three credit reports. Four out of five consumers who filed disputes experienced some modification to their credit report. Slightly more than one in 10 consumers saw a change in their credit score after the CRAs modified errors on their credit report. Approximately one in 20 consumers had a maximum score change of more than 25 points and only one in 250 consumers had a maximum score change of more than 100 points.” FTC 02/11/2013

According to Senator Warren’s Senate press release, over 40 organizations have already endorsed the new legislation. Here is the list from Warren’s Senate Press Release: “9to5, AFGE Women’s and Fair Practices Departments, American Association for Affirmative Action (AAAA), American Association of People with Disabilities (AAPD), American Federation of Labor-Congress of Industrial Relations (AFL-CIO), American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME), Americans for Financial Reform, Asian American Justice Center, Bazelon Center for Mental Health Law, Black Women’s Roundtable, Campaign for Community Change, Charles Hamilton Houston Institute for Race & Justice, Center for Law and Social Policy (CLASP), Consumer Action, Dēmos, Disability Rights Education and Defense Fund (DREDF), Disability Rights Legal Center, Job Opportunities Task Force, Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, Legal Action Center, MFY Legal Services, NAACP, NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, National Association of Consumer Advocates, National Black Justice Coalition, National Coalition on Black Civic Participation, National Consumer Law Center (on behalf of its low-income clients), National Council of La Raza, National Council on Independent Living, National Employment Law Project, National Employment Lawyers Association (NELA), National Fair Housing Alliance, National Gay and Lesbian Task Force Action Fund, National Network to End Domestic Violence, National Organization for Women, National Partnership for Women and Families, National Women’s Law Center, National Workrights Institute, Neighborhood Economic Development Advocacy Project (NEDAP), New York Legal Assistance Group, PolicyLink, Poverty and Race Research Action Council, Public Citizen, Public Justice Center, Service Employees International Union (SEIU), and U.S. PIRG.”

Progressive Oasis will keep you updated on the journey of this new and very important bill.

Warren Introduces Legislation Prohibiting Job Applicant Credit Checks http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/12/17/elizabeth-warren-credit-checks_n_4462810.html

Warren Senate Press Release Equal Employment For All Act http://www.warren.senate.gov/?p=press_release&id=305

FTC reveals errors in credit reports of consumers http://www.ftc.gov/news-events/press-releases/2013/02/ftc-study-five-percent-consumers-had-errors-their-credit-reports

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OMAHA,NE – The ratio of executive pay to minimum wage pay has become ridiculously astronomical in the US during the last three decades. Executive pay has skyrocketed and middle income earners and minimum wage earners have suffered with pay stagnating or decreasing. According to a slideshow posted after a Huffpost article on 11/24/2013 Walmart has a CEO to employee pay ratio of 717:1.  Only one company in the US has a greater CEO to employee ratio, United Health Group with a CEO to employee ratio of 1737:1.  Information at Payscale.com puts WalMart’s Executive Pay ratio even higher, at 1034:1.  Why does this need to happen in a country once known as the land of opportunity?

Executive Pay Ratio Chart

Look at these ridiculous executive pay ratios. From Economic Policy Institute

Raising the minimum in the US won’t do businesses the harm they as conservatives claim as Business week points out, “America’s minimum wage is 27 percent of the U.S. average pay, a lower ratio than that of any other member of the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development except Mexico. That doesn’t prove that the U.S. floor is too low—only that it can be higher without the sky falling. In Denmark, among the leading countries in income equality and national happiness, the minimum pay set by negotiations between employer groups and unions is the equivalent of about $20 an hour. Despite that, the World Bank has ranked Denmark as the easiest place in Europe to do business for three years running.” BusnessWeek 11/27/2013

Recently, the Swiss had a public vote on a referendum to cap executive pay at 12 times the wage of the lowest employee.  The proposal was rejected by two-thirds of voters, but the discussion highlighted the issue of executive pay, a discussion that needs to come to the US along with raising minimum wage.  I agree with the Swiss proposal to cap executive pay at a ratio of 12:1. Executive pay has risen in the past decade while middle class and poor incomes have stagnated or decreased.  American wages and hours are being cut to pay CEOs astronomical amounts of money. If you can’t understand that, then there’s the ignorance you speak of. A capitalist economy needs consumers who can afford to live in it. Sociopathic CEOs are an affront to that truth.  According to Payscale.com WalMart CEO, Michael Duke gets $23,150,000 a year. That adds up to 1000 jobs at $23,150 a year to pay his outrageous and astronomical salary. Time to reign in Executive Pay in this country!

References

Swiss Executive Pay Referendum – http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/11/24/executive-pay-switzerland-proposal_n_4333376.html

SEC and Executive Pay ratios. http://www.sec.gov/News/PressRelease/Detail/PressRelease/1370539817895#.UmCucmRDu3o

Minimum Wage http://www.businessweek.com/articles/2013-11-27/what-a-higher-minimum-wage-does-for-workers-and-the-economy

Posted by: Ken R | September 16, 2013

Local Blogger Launches Lee Terry For Retirement Page.


OMAHA, NE – A blogger in Omaha has launched the Lee Terry For Retirement FaceBook Page, hoping to capitalize on the fact that the do-nothing Congressman has been placed on the GOP list of endangered Congressmen for the 2014 elections, and to share news dealing Lee Terry and the political fight for his House seat.  I wonder who that blogger could possibly be?

Remember when Lee Terry promised self imposed term limits?  Well eight terms later we see it was a promise that meant nothing.  Not surprising coming from a Congressman who has done nothing in in DC. Why does this district keep electing him? Are voters just not paying attention? Are voters in Nebraska 2nd Congressional District comatose?

How about that gut check on Lee Terry’s Gut Feelings on Syria’s possession of chemical weapons? He claims Syria obtained chemical weapons from Iraq.  But despite making those claims, the do nothing Congressman says we shouldn’t attack Syria. Even Rachel Maddow takes a well-deserved swipe at do-nothing Congressman Lee Terry.

Recently, in Nebraska, when Lee Terry was asked what he would replace ObamaCare with, he responded with a plan that is very similar to what John Kerry proposed during his 2004 Presidential bid.  Was Lee Terry smart enough to realize that his plan is similar to John Kerry’s, and that John Kerry’s plan is similar to Obamacare?

It is no surprise that Congressman Terry is on the endangered list for 2014, he is been out of touch with his constituents for years. The Nebraska Democrats point out that Lee Terry is an undistinguished backbencher whose sole accomplishment to date is renaming a post office in Omaha. Do you think Lee Terry is a deficit hawk?  Don’t forget, Lee Terry voted for two worthless tax cuts, two costly wars, Medicare part D and the Wall Street Bailout. These votes between 2001 and 2009 added $10 trillion to the national debt.  Lee Terry’s votes in Congress were key in helping change our budget from a surplus in 2001 to a $1.3 trillion annual deficit in 2009. We don’t need Terry Lee in office anymore. Let’s get him out!

Make sure you check out the new Lee Terry for Retirement page here.  Help get Lee Terry out office by helping to share the truth about ALL THE ABSOLUTE NOTHING Lee Terry has done in office. Please like and share the page.
https://www.facebook.com/LeeTerryForRetirement

Lee Terry unwittingly narrates to pics of damage from the Mayflower Oil Spill.

Posted by: Ken R | September 14, 2013

Embattled Heartland Pride President Finally Resigns.


OMAHA, NE – Great News if you are an LGBT activist offended by comments made by Heartland Pride President, at Pride back in June.  On Thursday night, Sept 12, 2013, at Heartland Pride’s meeting, Beth Rigatuso, Heartland Pride President announced her resignation from the board, although she said she would continue to help them in the capacity of a consultant. She also said her resignation has nothing to do with any blogger in particular, nor any demands that were made of her regarding her comments comparing Omaha’s LGBT activists to Westboro protesters.  Rigatuso refused to apologize publicly for her comments about Westboro protesters, but she did apologize to two individuals present at the August meeting.  But after she announced her resignation, she went into whine mode about how so many members of the LGBT community complained about her and the things she did for Pride. Well, cry me a river!!!  What Beth may not understand, is that those same LGBT activists get criticized by members of the LGBT community for things they do as well!  Things meant to help the community move forward.  As far as my comments on this blog, what I said are facts. She claims I post anonymously on Progressive Oasis, but my name is present on EVERY post, and the ABOUT page clearly names the owner of the blog. Some people just go out of their way to be ignorant. If you are an activist, who was offended by her comments comparing us to Westboro Protesters, then you can rejoice. DING-DONG!!!!

The embattled former manager of Omaha’s annual LGBTQ Pride celebration was in the hot seat for comparing a group of LGBT activists to Westboro Protesters because they had threatened to picket during Mayor Stothert’s speech at Pride.  As many already know, Stothert has held anti- LGBT views and votes in the recent past.  Rigatuso gave no specifics about being a consultant to Pride, other than she would do it without pay.

Beth did mention she’d like to get back to a project she had started a couple years ago. I wonder if it involves this chapter of her life, inspiring health?

Posted by: Ken R | September 12, 2013

Jean Stothert Continues to Bring Omaha Down.


OMAHA, NE – Jean Stothert’s less than stellar performance so far as Omaha’s Mayor is no surprise to those who opposed her during the Mayoral race. As a vocal opponent to Jean Stothert, I can say those feelings are only growing stronger as we learned on Thursday, that Standard and Poor’s Ratings Services downgraded Omaha’s credit rating one notch, from AAA to AA+.  According to the Omaha World Herald, this is the first time Standard and Poor’s has given Omaha anything less than an AAA rating. A lower bond rating can make it more difficult for the city to obtain money from lenders, making it cost more to pay for things the city needs done. Upon the announcement, spokeswoman for the Mayor’s office said Stothert was not available for comment.  How convenient for the Mayor that she is suddenly not available for comment when the news comes out!   A complete dodge of her duties to lead this city.! The Mayor had gone to Chicago last week hoping the fire contract she helped negotiate would help strengthen Omaha’s credit rating. Well, Mayor, pixie dust and magic math can’t help you.

Miss Jim Suttle yet?

Miss Me Yet?

Miss Jim Suttle yet?

Voters should have paid attention during the Mayoral race. Remember Jean Stothert’s Hall of Magic, Secrets and Illusions?

Remember all those savings Stothert said taxpayers would get with her in office?  All those tax savings are about to go up in smoke, because Stothert has continued to mismanage the city’s money. Stothert lead the negotiations on the fire contract, so her fingerprints are all over this mess of a downgrade. her fingerprints have been all over it since her time on the City Council!  That’s Jean Stothert’s magic math! Can you see through the fog yet? At this point, are you sure you even want to?

Jean Stothert Retiring With Pancakes.

As Omaha Burns in the Background, Jean Enjoys a Pancake on her Head.

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