By Doug Porter
As expected yesterday, the City Council voted to override Mayor Kevin Faulconer’s veto of San Diego’s Earned Sick Day / Minimum Wage ordinance. The vote was 6-2, with all Democrats supporting and Republicans Mark Kersey, and Scott Sherman opposed. Councilwoman Lori Zapf did not attend the meeting.
Not long after the council vote Chamber of Commerce CEO Jerry Sanders dialed up the media, announcing they’d be collecting signatures to force a referendum on the ordinance, hoping to suspend (until the June, 2016 elections) an increase in pay for an estimated 172,000 local workers, along with denying access to earned sick days to 279,000 individuals.
Raise Up San Diego, the alliance of community, faith and labor groups supporting the ordinance passed by the City Council has announced it will mount an educational campaign urging people to decline to sign the referendum petitions.
To push back against this brazen attack against hard working San Diegans we need your help! Council President Todd Gloria, Irwin Jacobs, Mel Katz, Bill Walton and Barbara Bry kicked off the citywide campaign, simply called “Don’t Sign It,” to defeat the referendum against the ordinance.
Today, City Council stood up for 280,000 San Diegans who lack sick leave and nearly 200,000 low-wage workers who work hard every day and can’t afford rent and groceries, now its time to do our part. Here’s what you can you do:
- Take the pledge not to sign the anti-sick days anti-minimum wage petitions.
- Inform as many people as possible that the earned sick days and minimum wage policy HAS PASSED, and that any signature gathering effort is an attempt to TAKE IT AWAY!! Tell your friends: DON’T SIGN IT!
- If you see a signature gatherer, call or text the following hotline: (619) 930 – 3300
Rating the Job Creation Claim
It’s important to remember here that the people you’ll soon see in the news babbling about “job creation” and “job loss” are the sames ones who lied to San Diegans about the Navy leaving town when the Barrio Logan plan was being considered.
They operate from a place where the mantra holding that tax cuts for the wealthy and corporations are somehow linked to increased employment is held to be an essential truth.
The National Employment Law Center announced its support of the Minimum Wage increase, issuing a press release refuting Mayor Kevin Faulconer’s claims that the ordinance will make it more difficult to create jobs in San Diego.
The most rigorous economic research over the past 20 years shows that raising the minimum wage boosts worker pay without causing job losses – even in regions where the economy is weak or unemployment is high.
As summarized recently in a statement by 600 economists, including seven Nobel Laureates and eight past presidents of the American Economic Association, “In recent years there have been important developments in the academic literature on the effect of increases in the minimum wage on employment, with the weight of evidence now showing that increases in the minimum wage have had little or no negative effect on the employment of minimum-wage workers, even during times of weakness in the labor market.”
The War on the Minimum Wage is a War on Women
The Upshot column at the New York Times, wherein they try to delve into the numbers behind the news has a compelling story posted about the people who are most impacted by the low wage economy.
The article quotes Arlie Russell Hochschild, a sociologist at the University of California, Berkeley, who gave a speech yesterday on the impact of inequality on families at the American Sociological Association’s annual convention in San Francisco.
A few snippets from the Times article:
The attention paid to income and wealth inequality spurred by the French economist Thomas Piketty’s best-selling opus, “Capital in the Twenty-First Century,” comes with a caveat from some of its fans: What about women?…
…It’s at the lowest income levels that the burden on women stands out. Not only are they more likely than men to be in a minimum-wage job, but women are also much more likely to be raising a family on their own…
…So while the number of families living on less than $2 per person per day doubled between 1996 and 2011, according to the National Poverty Center, it tripled among families headed by a lone woman…
….“If the trickle-down theory were correct, the richest countries would have the highest proportion of thriving children,” Ms. Hochschild argues. But they don’t.
A 2010 Unicef report that measured the health, education and material well-being of a nation’s poorest children against its median children found that the United States ranked 23rd out of 24 nations. The only country that scored lower was Slovakia.
The Battle in the Streets of Ferguson, Missouri Continues
A ninth night of unrest in Ferguson Missouri has passed and things don’t seem to be getting any better.
I have to wonder if there’s some clown sitting in an office somewhere deliberately picking out the most provocative actions possible by the police.
Yesterday’s focus seemed to be on punishing the news media. After telling reporters they could congregate within a designated area to observe protests, the cops gassed them.
It’s almost like the cops were seeking revenge after being ordered by the courts not to interfere or harass reporters. Here’s the court order, granted following ACLU intervention.
A CNN reporter doing a live feed was pushed around by police (none of whom are wearing badges or name tags):
Courtesy of the Press Freedom Foundation, here’s a list of journalists who have been arrested or detained unlawfully by police:
August 19, 2014
- Lukas Hermsmeier of Bild
- Ryan Devereaux of The Intercept
August 18, 2014
- Ansgar Graw of Die Welt
- Frank Hermann of Der Standard
- Scott Olson of Getty Images
- Kerry Picket of Breitbart News
August 17, 2014
- Rob Crilly of The Telegraph
- Robert Klemko of Sports Illustrated
- Neil Munshi of the Financial Times
August 13, 2014
- Wesley Lowery of The Washington Post
- Ryan J. Reilly of The Huffington Post
Going Bump in the Night
Once the sun went down last night, things got really ugly. Here’s a report from Amanda Mills at Mashable. (Everybody and their mother has reporters in Ferguson now)
The sudden and drastic change in attitude of the police seemed unprovoked. It felt as though they were almost toying with the protesters, sending in tanks and speeding up and down the main street in SUVs. It was all pointless.
Although the curfew had been lifted, police still seemed eager to clear out the entire area by midnight, repeatedly threatening to arrest people who weren’t on sidewalks or were carrying signs and not moving enough around the area. When the sting of tear gas rolled in through the entire area, including the media center, it choked those caught off-guard, sending hundreds running in panic.
By 2 a.m., at least 31 people had been arrested, said Capt. Ron Johnson of the Missouri Highway Patrol. He blamed “violent agitators” and “criminals” for shooting at least two people in the area and throwing Molotov cocktails. The police did not fire bullets, he said.
Twitter vs. Facebook on the News
If you’ve been following the news out of Ferguson on social media (as I have), you may have noticed there’s a real difference between what gets posted on Twitter vs. what’s seen on Facebook.
Watching my Twitter feed these days is like cacophony of news and information. As always, I take what I see with a grain of salt, but in general the news is much more up to date and complete than anything I’ve seen on TV.
Facebook on Ferguson, on the other hand, is kind of like watching Fox News on a day when a positive story about Obamacare comes out.
Gail Sullivan at the Washington Post delved into the differences:
Your Twitter feed isn’t controlled by an algorithm. You see the tweets of people you follow in real time. But Facebook uses a complicated algorithm to determine what ends up in your news feed. They won’t reveal exactly how it works, but the company has said it ranks the content based in part on what you’ve liked, clicked or shared in the past.
Above: #Ferguson, on Twitter Below: Rest of America, on Facebook pic.twitter.com/C8u2lqK40d
— Anup Kaphle (@AnupKaphle) August 18, 2014
Ars Technica’s Casey Johnson suggested Facebook’s algorithm also weeds out controversial content — racially charged protests, perhaps? — from users’ news feeds: “There is a reason that the content users see tends to be agreeable to a general audience: sites like [BuzzFeed, Elite Daily, Upworthy, and their ilk] are constantly honing their ability to surface stuff with universal appeal. Content that causes dissension and tension can provide short-term rewards to Facebook in the form of heated debates, but content that creates accord and harmony is what keeps people coming back.”
Oh, Yeah–I should probably plug my story about the battle for San Diego’s minimum wage at Daily Kos. (Be sure to “like” it.)
On This Day: 1848 – The discovery of gold in California was reported by the New York Herald. 1909– First edition of IWW Little Red Song Book published 1964 – The first American tour by the Beatles began in San Francisco The tour would cover 26 cities.
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Dana Levy says
Let me just add my voice/sentiment to your piece on the minimum wage. We will see how “compassionate” the population of North County is on this issue. It doesn’t effect them like it does south of 8. Everywhere I go and see signature gatherers I will tell them no and urge others to stay away and not sign too. This seems like such a no-brainer and looking at those opposed to it, I have nothing in common with any of them. The city council, for once, did the right thing and now I hope my fellow citizens will also.
Raising the minimum wage is the right thing to do. Mayor Faulconner, and his shrinking gang , are foolish. Councilmember Zapf is intelligent to stay away from them and their retro-thinking….
And ex -mayor Sanders should retire from the chamber of commerce and stop television appearances… He looks like a skeleton out of the closet….
Thank you San Diego city council for giving us HOPE!!!!!
Lori Saldaña says
This is clearly a very complicated ballot measure. If you see petition gatherers, and you have a few minutes to spare, you could ask to read the language on the signature sheet. Tell them you want to be fully informed before you sign. Read it carefully. Then read it again, maybe out loud. Maybe act confused about why workers should receive less money and no sick leave.
Then ask the signature gatherer a question about the language. Then ask another question. Then, if he or she begins to get frustrated with you, start to sign…but then hesitate and start reading the language again.
In other words: take as much time as you need to fully educate yourself about the specifics, before actually signing the petition. And if you run out of time and don’t sign it, well, that happens.
Some may point out this is a waste of their time. After all, each minute you were holding the petition and reading the Ballot measure language means someone else won’t be able to sign it.
Of course I’m not suggesting you intentionally waste their time and prevent others from signing the petition. I’m simply encouraging you to read the language, Word for Word, more than one time if necessary to fully understand before you sign… Or not.
Lori Saldaña says
If my previous comment was not to your liking, remember- feel free to use the simplest/least confrontational tactic: DON”T SIGN
Basically ***Please decline to sign any petition you encounter. There are no legitimate petitions in circulation that will “increase” minimum wage, regardless of what the signature gatherers tell you.**
If you want to do more, here’s what you can do to help:
1. If you see a signature gatherer, call or text the following decline to sign hotline: (619) 930–3300. Take a minute now and add the number to your contacts so you’re ready when/if you see signature gathering taking place.
2. Inform as many people as possible that the earned sick days and minimum wage policy HAS PASSED, and that any signature gathering effort is an attempt to TAKE IT AWAY!!
3. Tell your friends, family, coworkers etc: DON’T SIGN ANYTHING! If they still want to, see previous post: tell them to READ EVERY WORD and ASK MANY QUESTIONS before signing,
Final note: I’d love to tell you that, if you have any doubts about the veracity of what you are being told, ask the sig gathering person’s name, note where/when you were told the Information, and report it as accurately as possible… but there is currently no agency or department with oversight of those gathering your name, signature and personal Information. They can mislead and misrepresent- and never be held accountable.
Lori Saldaña says
Today I had my 1st interaction with a petition gatherer, at the Sprouts in Clairemont. I had just finished loading groceries in my car. He yelled out “are you a registered voter in the city of San Diego?” and I knew it was time to try my strategy: read the details.
He started out by asking if I wanted to help raise the minimum-wage. I told him that had already been done by the city Council.
He countered that the mayor had vetoed their action. I replied that they had overridden the veto a few days ago.
Then he told me the purpose of the petition is to keep the Council from “running roughshod” over voters. This is according to man who also admitted he is not from San Diego.
We continued to talk, and I insisted on reading the petition language. This seemed to make him uncomfortable. The language is many pages long full of a lot of information that I sincerely doubt anyone will take the time to read. The signature pages are attached to each pamphlet, which a phased timeline for wage increases, and described who is eligible for sick leave, under what circumstances, what defines “illness,” etc. etc. etc
I kept reading and asking questions, and he kept trying to take the petition away from me as I went through the pages. Then he began to point me to the summary page. I thanked him for directing me to the one page summary, but pointed out there were a lot of details and that I thought it was important to know before signing.
I also pointed out we elect people to represent us, not “run rough shod” over voters. At that point I told him I would not be interested in signing, and he called out to some others getting in their cars, and left to pursue them. All this was at the Clairemont Sprouts Store. Unfortunately, it looked like he already had many signatures.
Before driving home I called the declined to sign phone number to let them know this guy was in the parking lot. Remember to call if you see these signature gatherers: 619-930-3300
Raising the minimum wage is the right thing to do… You would think the right- wing would be hip to that….