This Week in Labor History: 1/21 – 1/27

Some 10,000 clothing workers strike in Rochester, N.Y., for the 8-hour day, a 10-percent wage increase, union recognition, and extra pay for overtime and holidays. Daily parades were held throughout the clothing district and there was at least one instance of mounted police charging the crowd of strikers and arresting 25 picketers. Six people were wounded over the course of the strike and one worker, 18-year-old Ida Breiman, was shot to death by a sweatshop contractor. The strike was called off in April after manufacturers agreed not to discriminate against workers for joining a union – 1913

In Allegany County, MD, workers with the Civilian Conservation Corps, a New Deal era public works program employing unmarried men aged 18-25, are snowbound at Fifteen Mile Creek Camp S-53 when they receive a distress call about a woman in labor who needs to get to a hospital. 20 courageous CCC volunteers dig through miles of snow drifts until the woman is successfully able to be transported – 1936


In the Library ~~ Before Roe V Wade , by Linda Greenhouse&Reva Siegel


Before Roe v. Wade: Voices that Shaped the Abortion Debate Before the Supreme Court’s Ruling (2d edition, 2012)

The Supreme Court’s 1973 decision in Roe v. Wade legalized abortion–but the debate was far from over, continuing to be a political battleground to this day. Bringing to light key voices that illuminate the case and its historical context, Before Roe v. Wade looks back and recaptures how the arguments for and against abortion took shape as claims about the meaning of the Constitution—and about how the nation could best honor its commitment to dignity, liberty, equality, and life.

In this ground-breaking book, Linda Greenhouse, a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist who covered the Supreme Court for 30 years for The New York Times, and Reva Siegel, a renowned professor at Yale Law School, collect documents illustrating cultural, political, and legal forces that helped shape the Supreme Court’s decision and the meanings it would come to have over time. A new afterword to the book explores what the history of conflict over abortion in the decade before Roe might reveal about the logic of conflict in the ensuing decades. The entanglement of the political parties in the abortion debate in the period before the Court ruled raises the possibility that Roe itself may not have engendered political polarization around abortion as is commonly supposed, but instead may have been engulfed by it.

Stephen Miller: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know … ~ reminder

Stephen Miller, Donald Trump aide, Trump inauguration day speech, Donald Trump speechwriter

Stephen Miller (left) at Trump Tower on November 11, 2016. (Getty)

Stephen Miller was the senior policy adviser for the Donald Trump campaign and has been named Senior Adviser to the President. Miller also co-wrote Trump’s inauguration address with Steve Bannon and has continued to be a key player in the Trump administration. On January 29, as protests across the nation erupted in response to Trump’s immigration executive order, Miller was one of the Trump advisers dispatched to defend the policy.

MSNBC host Joe Scarborough even suggested that Miller was behind the chaos the immigration order created. Indeed, a White House official told CNN that Miller spent months putting the immigration order together, secretly working closely with Steve Bannon. Miller told CBS New that the order will “make sure that people entering our country truly love and support the United States of America.”

A longtime adviser for Alabama Senator Jeff Sessions, Miller was often seen on the campaign trail as a “warm-up act” for Trump. He also wrote Trump’s speech for the 2016 Republican National Convention.

The 31-year-old Miller is a California native and a Duke University graduate.

Here’s a look at Miller’s life and career.

1. Miller Wrote ‘Osama Bin Laden would feel very welcome at Santa Monica High School’ in 2002

Stephen Miller, Stephen Miller Trump adviser, Trump adviser

Stephen Miller at a May 2016 Trump rally in Anaheim. (Getty)

Everything about Miller’s background suggests that he would be a lifelong Democrat. He grew up in Santa Monica, California and both of his parents are Democrats. However, his political viewpoints were influenced by Guns, Crime, and Freedom by National Rifle Association CEO Watne LaPierre, Politico reports.

While at Santa Monica High School, he reached out to conservative radio host Larry Elder to appear on his show to complain about his high school. In 2002, he already showed signs of how he would easily fit into the Trump team by writing an op-ed in a local Santa Monica newspaper called “Political Correctness Out of Control.” The essay was filled with complaints about his high school.

Miller wrote:

That is why scarcely a student at my school covered their heart when the national anthem was played in the September 11th memorial, but instead of finding error in that, our school found error in our attack on Afghanistan. The school newspaper condemned our military response. Administrators, worried students might become patriotic, were also quick to preach non-violence. Osama Bin Laden would feel very welcome at Santa Monica High School.

If you feel, like me, that political correctness has crossed the line, call the school or the district. Ask them to leave their liberal agendas at the front gate. Enough politics, it’s time for common sense.

Even after graduating from Santa Monica High, he continued complaining about the school. In a 2005 op-ed for Front Page Magazine, Miller accused the Left of creating the “false reality of institutional racism” at Santa Monica High School and called it “a center of political indoctrination.” He specifically targeted school board member Oscar De La Torre.

In 2005, Miller wrote:

Assimilation is anathema to leftists like De Le Torre because the resulting unity would eliminate the need for their policies and programs. To a disturbing extent, this indoctrination has been successful. I have spoken with a number of minority students during my time at SamoHi who claimed that they thought of themselves as Mexican, or Honduran, or Guatemalan first, and American second.

Miller was also influenced by David Horowitz, the founder of Students for Academic Freedom, according to a Politico profile of Miller. They first met when Miller was a teenager and he invited Horowitz to talk at his high school. When Miller invited him to speak at Duke and when he thought Duke wasn’t giving Horowtiz’s talk enough support, he claimed that Horowitz was banned from speaking there. But the talk happened and was broadcast on C-SPAN.

Vincent Viola: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know

Vincent Viola, the billionaire founder of Virtu Financial and the owner of the Florida Panthers, is Donald Trump’s nominee for Army Secretary. What are his credentials for the post?

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2. Miller Accused Maya Angelou of ‘Racial Paranoia’ & Called Duke University ‘Obsessed With Multiculturalism (a.k.a. Segregation)’

Stephen Miller, Trump aides, Trump advisers, Trump inauguration speech writer

Trump Deputy campaign manager David Bossie, Communications Director Hope Hicks and Stephen Miller at Mar-a-Lago on December 19, 2016. (Getty)

During his time at Duke University, Miller published bi-weekly columns in the Due Chronicle, in which he makes his political leanings crystal clear. In a September 2005 column, for example, he accused Duke of lacking in “diversity of thought” and called it a “Leftist University.” He specifically criticized Duke for inviting Maya Angelou to speak to incoming freshman each year.

“Now, whether you share her racial paranoia or not, the point remains that she is a leftist, yet she is invited to give the orientation speech every single year,” Miller wrote. “Has the administration ever heard of balance? Why not invite someone with another perspective from time to time?”

In the same column, he equated multiculturalism with segregation. “The administration is so obsessed with multiculturalism (a.k.a. segregation) that they deem it necessary to include in freshman orientation a separate luncheon for black students,” he wrote.

In a November 2005 column called “Sorry Feminists,” Miller blamed the gender pay gap on women, writing that they work less and take more lower-paying jobs.

“The pay gap gets a lot smaller when you account for the fact that women work about only 85 percent as many hours as men and are responsible for only 10 percent of all overtime worked,” Miller wrote. “Women also choose lower-paying professions. Educated women are far more likely than educated men to go into service fields such as teaching and social working-admirable professions but ones that don’t pay nearly as well as careers in business.”

In a column from November 2006, Miller criticized Duke for requiring “every student engage in cross-cultural inquiry to graduate, yet there is no requirement to learn about America or larger Western civilization.” He wrote in the same column, “We must come to the defense of our heritage. And for us, that fight begins right here, on our campus.”

A Duke alum told Politico that Miller didn’t write these columns just to spark controversies. He did it to build a personal brand for his professional career. “He was very businesslike about it,” the alum told Politico.

“Part of his standing out was he put a moral tone on every issue he touched on,” John Burness, who worked in Duke’s public relations while Miller was there, told Politico. “If you did not agree with him, there was something immoral about you. He defined the term sanctimonious.”

Miller told Politico that the goal of his columns was to be “a voice of justice and reason” on a campus “where many professors had radical beliefs and engaged in outrageous behavior.”

White nationalist Richard Spencer told the Daily Beast that he was a “mentor” to Miller while they were both at Duke.

“I spent a lot of time with him at Duke… I hope I expanded his thinking… but I think he probably would be where he is today without me as well,” Spencer told the Daily Beast, adding that he thinks Miller is an “American nationalist.” However, Spencer doesn’t think Miller is a “white nationalist” and “would never be alt-tight.”

Spencer told the Daily Beast that he hasn’t been in contact with Miller for the past five years.

“I definitely knew that he was going to make something of himself. And I’m not surprised that he’s a public figure,” Spencer told the Daily Beast. “I think the Duke lacrosse case proved that. He came out swinging when that controversy went down, and he was really adept at the media.”

Mick Mulvaney: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know

Mick Mulvaney represents South Carolina’s fifth Congressional district, but he’s got a new job: White House Budget Director for Donald Trump.

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3. Miller First Gained National Attention for Defending the Duke Lacrosse Players Accused of Rape

Miller first gained national attention for his staunch support of the four white Duke Lacrosse players who were accused of raping a black woman in March 2006. A week after the accusation was first reported, lacrosse coach Mike Pressler was forced to resign and the rest of the team’s 2006 season was cancelled. But in April 2007, future North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper, who was then the state’s Attorney General, dropped all the charges.

Miller began to feel vindicated as Durham County District Attorney Mike Nifong’s case began to fall apart.

“The more information that surfaces the more apparent it becomes to fair-minded observers that our lacrosse team was railroaded and that three of our fellow students are being put on trial not because of evidence but because of a DA’s incompetence and malice,” Miller wrote in an August 2006 column for the Duke Chronicle. “Sadly, many in the community have shown that they are not fair minded but would rather hunt for witches than search for justice.”

Miller wrote that Nifong, who was later disbarred, was “propelled by the chants and screams of the Duke-and-Durham-Left who sprang into action as soon as it became clear that the alleged victim’s story could be used to propagate their destructive black-versus-white worldview.”

As The Chronicle notes, Miller’s support for the players earned him spots on The O’Reilly Factor and The Nancy Grace Show.

Donald Trump Tweets ‘Unpresidented’ Instead of ‘Unprecedented’

Donald Trump was the target of mockery Saturday morning for misspelling ‘unprecedented’ when talking about China. He wrote ‘unpresidented’ instead.

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4. Miller Helped Jeff Sessions Defeat the Gang of Eight’s Immigration Reform Bill in 2013

Stephen Miller, Trump aides, Trump advisers, Trump inauguration speech writer

Stephen Miller at Trump Tower on December 14, 2016. (Getty)

After graduating from Duke in 2007 with a degree in political science, Miller stayed on the East Coast and moved to Washington, first working as press secretary to Representatives Michele Bachmann and John Shadegg. In 2009, he began working with Alabama Senator Jeff Sessions, who Trump has nominated for Attorney General.

Now that he could have a hand in shaping policy, Miller took the opportunity. He was Sessions’ communication director when the “Gang of Eight” immigration reform bill was moving through Congress and helped his boss kill it after it passed the Senate. The House never voted on the bill.

According to Nevada News and Views, Miller was behind a column that reminded Republicans what the “Gang of Eight” bill did. “It provided illegal immigrants with welfare, entitlements, lifetime work authorization, chain migration and every other benefit under the sun (even as sponsors pledged the exact opposite),” Miller wrote in one of his 10 points.

In a March 2016 interview with Newsmax, Miller said the Gang of Eight, which included four Republicans, paved the way for Trump’s success.

“Much of this discontent really began growing profoundly in 2013 when eight senators got together and what did they do? They defied the will of every single GOP voter,” Miller told Newsmax. “[They tried to] push through the biggest amnesty bill in history. It’s interesting to be diagnosing bitter discontent when you’re one of those eight senators.”

When Trump announced that Miller was joining his campaign, Ann Coulter tweeted, “I’m in heaven!”

Door Dash – workingwa found… DoorDash is paying an astonishingly low $1.45/hour

DoorDash advertises that workers can make “up to $25/hour,” but we wanted to know what DoorDash workers are getting paid — after expenses like mileage and additional payroll taxes. So we crowdsourced pay data from more than 200 workers across the country and we ran the numbers.
We found that DoorDash is paying an astonishingly low $1.45/hour, after accounting for the costs of mileage and additional payroll taxes borne by independent contractors.

Meanwhile, the company itself is worth $12.6 billion. But their pay model is apparently to have workers deliver food effectively for free in hopes of collecting tips.
You can read the full report here, or read on for key details. (And don’t forget to check out the coverage in Hacker News, Gizmodo, Salon, Wonkette, and TechMeme.)
• On average, DoorDash pays just $1.45 per hour worked, after accounting for the expenses of mileage and the additional payroll taxes borne by independent contractors. The average job requires 6.8 miles of driving and takes 30 minutes to complete.
• A third of jobs pay less than $0 after accounting for basic expenses.
• Just 11% of jobs pay more than the federal minimum wage of $7.25/hour after expenses, and only 2% meet the standard of $15/hour + expenses.
• Despite the company’s insistence that they are no longer misappropriating tips, our analysis shows that jobs with higher tips tend to have lower pay. Jobs with higher tips tend to include less gross pay from DoorDash per hour, less gross pay per mile, and less net pay after expenses.
DoorDash was the first major food delivery app to use a black-box algorithm to set workers’ pay. They were the first major food delivery app to directly substitute tips for pay, and the last to back away from this wildly unpopular scheme. Now it appears DoorDash may soon become the first food delivery app to drive down pay to effectively zero after expenses.

It’s all the more reason why we’re building the Pay Up campaign: to reboot the gig economy with a pay floor of $15/hour + expenses, tips on top, and a detailed, transparent breakdown of pay.
If you’ve ever worked in the gig economy, if you’ve eer used gig economy apps as a customer, or if just want to show your support, click here to sign on to our campaign to make the gig economy pay up!

Working Washington