Jake Blumgart's blog

Is Jersey's Paid Family Leave Law A Success?

July 28, 2011 - 4:04pm

By Jake Blumgart

Last November, the New Jersey Star Ledger published an editorial celebrating the success of their state’s paid family leave law. I missed it when it first came out, but its key point deserves to be highlighted.

The Chamber of Commerce Does Not Care About Unemployment

July 11, 2011 - 5:37pm

By Jake Blumgart

Today, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce held its "Jobs For America Summit". Consider it part of a continuing campaign to convince the public that the organization cares about something other than the profits of its largest donors. (It doesn’t.)

New Hampshire Governor Defends RGGI

July 7, 2011 - 2:00pm

By Jake Blumgart

Yesterday New Hampshire Governor John Lynch stepped up and defended America’s only policy initiative against climate change.  Lynch vetoed Republican legislation that would have removed his state from the continent’s functioning carbon dioxide pollution cap-and-trade system, the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI.)

Why We Had To Regulate The Auto Industry

July 1, 2011 - 3:49pm

By Jake Blumgart. Posted on July 1, 2011.

I recently came across a 1986 Ralph Nader op-ed extolling the virtues of automobile safety and reminding us why government action, in this instance, was so necessary.

The occasion for Nader’s opining was the 20th anniversary of the publication of Unsafe At Any Speed (1965), a searing depiction of an auto industry with little concern for the safety of their product.  LBJ signed The National Traffic and Motor Vehicle Safety Act into law a year after Nader’s book hit the shelves and a nw federal agency was created to address the myriad oversights of the American auto industry: The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

The Big Three—General Motors, Ford, and Chrysler—were horrified by this unprecedented incursion into their domain. “Many of the temporary standards are unreasonable, arbitrary and technically unfeasible,” Henry Ford II whined. “If we can’t meet them when they are published we’ll have to close down.” The Big Three, of course, did not shut down. Instead, after much kicking and screaming, “arbitrary” features like seatbelts, headrests, and turning signals became standard issue.

California’s Paid Family Leave Law Is Working, New Study Finds

May 18, 2011 - 9:40am

By Mike Hall. Posted on the AFL-CIO's blog. January 12, 2011.

 California’s paid family leave law “has been remarkably successful” and received high marks from both employers and workers, according to a new study released yesterday by researchers from UCLA/City University of New York (CUNY) and the Center for Economic and Policy Research (CEPR).

CASE STUDY: Koch Front Groups Attack RGGI – the Northeast Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative

April 13, 2011 - 3:56pm

Posted on Greenpeace.org. April 13, 2011. 

BRIEF: Koch front groups campaigned against the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI), a market-based cap-and-trade program established in 2007 by ten U.S. Northeast and Mid-Atlantic states to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from power plants.

FLASHBACK: One Year Ago, GOP Predicted ‘Armageddon’ If Health Reform Became Law

March 23, 2011 - 6:24pm

By Igor Volsky. Published in Think Progress. March 23, 2011.

Today is the one-year anniversary of President Barack Obama signing the Affordable Care Act or health care reform into law, which, once fully implemented will cover 32 million Americans and begin to lower the rate of growth in health care spending.

Chamber Of Commerce Continues Decades-Long Assault Against Clean Economy

February 1, 2011 - 6:01pm

By Brad Johnson. Published in Think Progress. February 1, 2011.

At a Washington DC press conference, U.S. Chamber of Commerce officials blasted President Obama’s call for a clean energy future. Christopher Guith, vice president for policy at the Chamber’s Institute for 21st Century Energy, said a national clean-energy standard is “ridiculously premature,” even though 25 states have renewable and alternative energy standards, the first established in 1983. The Institute’s president, former Bush official Karen Harbert, said that the United States should instead allow “increased access to land for oil and gas drilling both onshore and offshore,” drilling a deeper hole with fossil fuel dependence.

Republicans Can't Name A Single "Job Killer" Regulation

January 25, 2011 - 1:16pm

By James Lardner. Posted on ReMapping Debate. January 25, 2011.

"Job-killing regulations? Opponents fail to support claims with evidence" investigates the right-wing’s persistent use of “job killer” rhetoric to describe anything they don’t like.

After Upper Big Branch Mine Disaster, Republicans Still Obstructing Progress

October 5, 2010 - 3:41pm

By Peter Dreier and Jake Blumgart. Posted on Huffington Post. October 5, 2010.

Six months ago, on April 5th, 29 miners were killed by an immense explosion at the Upper Big Branch mine in West Virginia. They didn't have to die. Mine owners, government officials, and union safety experts have known how to prevent such explosions for decades. Some operators take the necessary steps to prevent such occurrences, but others are willing to put short-term profits above worker safety.