New York Times Forgets to Mention Blagojevich’s Stand With Republic Workers

by Scott Creighton

The New York Times is reporting that the workers who staged that sit-in at Republic Windows and Doors have effectively won their standoff with Bank of America (financing bank) and JP Morgan Chase (40% owner) and they will be paid what they should have been paid last week as per the letter of the law.

“…the company owners (JP Morgan Chase) had formed a new window company, Echo Windows LLC, and bought a new plant in Red Oak, Iowa, where labor costs are cheaper…” New York Times

What they don’t tell you in the article, is 2 days before this settlement happened yesterday, Gov. Blangojevich stood shoulder to shoulder with those striking workers, and declared that he would cancel Bank of America’s Illinois State contracts and accounts if they did not do the right thing.

“… we have contacted ALL our agencies across state government and as of NOW, every agency has been ordered to suspend any business with the Bank of America...”  Rod Blagojevich

“..it isn’t right when powerful special interests get the help to bail them out, the banks (Bank of America AND JP Morgan Chase) yet the purpose of that money was supposed to be to set up a line of credit to businesses like this to keep workers working… and yet the Bank of America has yet to step up…” R. Blagojevich

They left that out completely.

Could you imagine them “forgetting” that tidbit of information if, say Barack Obama had took such a courageous stand for worker’s rights? Or John McCain for that matter?

One day after making this announcement, Blagojevich was arrested on two charges stemming from his efforts to get a reporter fired, but the complaint had 70 extra pages of wire-tap quotes, taken out of context, where he is apparently postiioning himself to profit from the selection of the Senator to take Obama’s place. The press jumped all over that information, though the arrest had nothing to do with those allegations, in an obvious attempt to smear his name.

And now we see yet another example of this effort to gloss over his assistance to these workers. The New York Times forgot to mention Blagojevich’s landmark stand with these workers.

so what happened was thisMonday Blagojevich makes this statement after trying to get Bank of America to reach a deal with the workers last week, Tuesday he is arrested and the demonizing of him begins in the corporate press, Tuesday he vows to fight this and says his work will go on in the mean-time, Tuesday evening Bank of America decides to “negotiate” with the workers who vow they will remain on the sit-in until they get resolution, Wednesday Bank of America reaches a deal with the workers.

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8 Responses

  1. […] I come across this article that mentions JP Morgan Chase again: by Scott […]

  2. I think it’s important to discuss this worker’s action in some kind of context. The context might be the continuing economic meltdown. This is a piece of an article talking about Obama and his reading of FDR’s first 100 days:

    “…the president-elect may be reading the wrong history. Perhaps, instead of reading about Roosevelt’s first hundred days, he should read Chapter 16 of Smith’s FDR, which describes how growing political pressure kept Roosevelt looking over his left shoulder. By 1934, new labor organizations like the Congress of Industrial Organizations, charismatic leaders like Louisiana’s Governor Huey Long, and social innovators like California physician Francis Townsend were offering concrete plans to spread the wealth far faster and wider than Roosevelt’s New Deal ever would. Continuing economic catastrophe, fused with the mood of hope and change that he himself had stirred up, gave rise to the threat that the president might be unseated if he did not move leftwards.

    Consummate politician that he was, Roosevelt did move — just far enough to ensure his reelection. In the 1936 campaign, he ratcheted up the rhetoric, fiercely attacking the “economic royalists” who controlled the “corporations, banks, and securities.” It was the kind of language that would please any 2008 progressive. He decried the injustice of a country where more than half the wealth was controlled by less than 200 big corporations, all tied together by interlocking directorates and banks. This small group, he insisted, had established “a new industrial dictatorship” — far stronger words than we’re used to today — with “an almost complete control over other people’s property, other people’s money, other people’s labor — other people’s lives.” To Americans, FDR pledged to master these “economic royalists” who held the public in “economic slavery.”

    In the most important speech of the campaign, he promised to “increase wages that spell starvation… wipe out sweatshops… provide useful work for the needy unemployed… end monopoly in business… protect the consumer against unnecessary price spreads, against the costs that are added by monopoly and speculation… support collective bargaining… work for the regulation of security issues… for the wiping out of slums.” For all these things, FDR exclaimed, “and for a multitude of things like them we have only just begun to fight.”

    That 1936 campaign is the history both a politically canny president-elect and progressives should be reading right now. It would remind him, and teach us, that a centrist president can be pushed, under the pressure of tough times and rising public hopes, in our direction — if, that is, we are dedicated, well-organized, and persistent enough. Under pressure, Roosevelt moved an agenda that, in 1932, sounded radical indeed into the respectable center of American politics only four years later…”

    http://www.tomdispatch.com/post/175012/ira_chernus_what_the_president_elect_should_be_reading

    I read this and think the B of A is in no mood to have Obama, or anyone else try again what FDR did to them. They want to send lessons that if the Banks want to stop lending credit, no politician is going to stop them. This is the kind of message the mafia types would send. And this explains why others have not done anything similar to the Guv’s to help people being foreclosed, auto workers being laid off, etc., etc.

    The pert about this I find interesting is where Obama came out in support of these workers on Sunday(?) I wonder about how this is taken by the B of A.

    I take it the phone tapping is part of an effort to make it difficult for anyone to criticize the “economic royalists.”

  3. Will,

    I am not sure the guy is that innocent. Here is a discussion of the indictment,

    “…Six major charges were outlined in the FBI affidavit. Two arise from the testimony in a corruption trial earlier this year in which Chicago slumlord and political fixer Antoin (Tony) Rezko was convicted of influence peddling. The same witnesses whose testimony led to the conviction of Rezko identified Blagojevich as the instigator of efforts over a five-year period to shake down construction companies seeking state road contracts and to extort campaign contributions from officials of a state-supervised teachers’ pension fund.

    Four additional charges are based on evidence obtained through court-ordered wiretaps that began on October 21. These include further construction-linked shakedowns related to a $1.8 billion Illinois Tollway expansion, extortion of executives at a pediatric hospital seeking a state permit, a threat to withhold state financial assistance to the Tribune Co. if those responsible for hostile editorials in the Chicago Tribune were not fired, and the auction of Obama’s Senate seat.

    By far the most media attention has been given to the allegations relating to the Senate seat. Blagojevich and Harris surveyed the field of a half dozen hopefuls to replace Obama, estimating what they could extract in return for an appointment, with the governor always reserving the right to appoint himself to the post if not offered enough.

    The governor’s calculations were invariably of a mercenary character. He complained repeatedly about his family’s financial circumstances, declaring in one monitored phone discussion about the Senate appointment, “I want to make money.” In a November 5 conversation with a deputy governor, he mulled over possible appointments in an Obama administration, and his aide helpfully suggested that the post of secretary of energy is “the one that makes the most money.”…”

    http://www.wsws.org/articles/2008/dec2008/blag-d11.shtml

    You are right to point out that, by this account, there were six charges and none of them were about the Senate Seat sale.

    I am wondering whether the Obama people were tipped to the case building about the Guv and wanted something done to wind things up so that the new Senator would not be living under a cloud. The question would be: Was the seat bought, or what? Could the C of S have been brought to the phone knowing it was the Guv. and that he was being worked up?

    There was some speculation about why the arrest was made so quickly. The Guv. was going to be trying to raise money before a cut off date on Jan 1st. Etc. Again no thought about the B of A connection.

    What might make the reporting crew there make a connection if they haven’t seen one already?

  4. Steve;

    Good find, but there are a few problems with the story. Minor, really, kinda

    The author of this says that Obama had no connections with Blago except that Axelrod worked on the 2002 election for blago, when in fact, Obama and Rahm were on that advisory team, and Axelrod, to my knowledge was the one who didn’t like him. i’ll look into that.

    The author mentions that the same person to testify against Rezko is also the one supplying the info on one of the charges against Blago (the 1.8 billion thing)… but they FAIL to tell you that that guy is one of the three that I mention in the earlier article I wrote, and if I am not mistaken, he is the one cutting a deal, for embezzlment and LYING to the FBI in a previous case… not a great witness, huh?

    Lastly and this is a big one, they don’t make the connection between the Zell story and the date the “investigation” against Blago started. Zell, the billionaire Tribune owner who wanted state money to pay off business debts and Blago told him to get rid of the writer who was trying to get him impeached, and he would do it. That’s bad, but huh, that happened sometime in Oct…

    … the “investigation” started in mid to late Oct….

    … and by the FBI’s own statement, the Tribune and Zell just happened to “know” about it back then. They kept quiet about it.

    And as it just so happens, Zell declared bankruptcy for the Tribune on Monday, the day before they arrested Blago…

    sounds kind of contrived now that you think about it, doesn’t it?

    Seems straight forward to. When billionare Zell wanted public money to pay his private business debts and Blago told him to lay off the impeachment issue, seems like Zell went to the FBI and laid the whole thing out for them, to get Blago impeached.

    Now this thing comes along with Bank of America, and they have the makings of a right nice lynching party…

    they just happen to let Zell know about it this past weekend so he makes his move on Monday.

  5. I’m interested in this,…and a few other things.

    Here is a link to a piece with video from Young Turks. The moderator says that the Guv. warned his own staff to not say anything on phones because he expected them to be tapped. So, this suggested to the moderator that the Guv. was stupid to then go on the phone to say the things they quoted him as saying. I think then you might be correct that the phones were bugged when they were supposedly off.

    http://www.alternet.org/blogs/video/111910/blagojevich_puts_the_%22pimp%22_back_into_politicking/

    I’m interested in cars tonight.

  6. Steve;

    Yeah, but did he commit a crime on the phone by simply saying, to his adviser, that he would like to get a job for his wife in the trade-off? Is that a crime? the FBI apparently didn’t think so.

    My guess is he was getting panicy about finding a way to resolve the issue and put himself in a better place for it.

    The Young Turk is ok, but remember, he wants to say something unique and get some attention that way, while still slamming this guy cus it’s politcally correct right now to do so. He didn’t mention BOA either, did he? And all he added was to call the guy “stupid”?

    Think about this; What did Hillary Clinton spend to get her Senate seat? She had to buy a house in New York, because they didn’t live there at the time. That’s what? half mil? less? more?

    Then there was the primary and the general election, and all the adtime and the printed media, buttons, stickers, “bribes”…

    What does that add up to in the most expensive media market in the country (and probably the world?)? Don’t forget travel expenses, aides, office space, gas money… ect. ect. ect.

    What did she put into her campaign for the White House of her own money? Different story, right?

    So what did Hillary Clinton spend on her Senate seat? And after all that, it was a crap shoot. People voted. So it may have been all for nothing.

    Now, what do we have going on here? One guy, picks one name, and that person is a Senator of the United States of America. Retirement pay for life, revolving door after leaving, all kinds of opportunity for work afterward, and of course, nearly 200,000 per year for the next two years of Obama’s term. And probably a guaranteed reelection, if that person tows the party line.

    All for free. No election, no primary, no voters, no costs.

    Talk about being “tapped”. it don’t get no better than that. Does it?

    So, when Obama’s Team says they got someone they want Blago to name as the Senator, do you think they aren’t getting something out of it? Or do you think Obama’s Clintonista team is in it only for the “good of the people”?

    Yeah, they had something in mind. A blank political check for the rest of that person’s life. Anything Obama wanted while in office (8 years) that person would be an automatic vote in the Senate.

    We are all adults here. We can see how the game is being played.

    And the Turk comes up with “he must be stupid”? seems kind of overly simplistic if you ask me.

  7. Hey Scott Allen … I see you and hawkster are going at it on ADS today … Damn it … I wanted to take today off … I left an anonymous comment almost an hour ago that said

    “Hawkster … Is that you ….

    If it is I’ve been waiting for you ….”

    It hasn’t shown up yet … If it doesn’t I’m guessing that not only is it hawkster … but he must be involved with the decision making somehow around there … but we’ll see … That would be a good spot to put in a plug for my web address … I’ll focus that little anonymous worm down for you and then you’ll have him cornered …. Just a thought …. OUT!

  8. JD, I don’t think this was hawkster. this person had a different flair, a more openly aggressiveness to his Rhetoric. Hawkster was more cool, calm, and calculatingly more sinister. this weinnie head was shooting from the hip.

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