Posts Tagged: corporate state


Man ejected from Southwest flight for tweeting that a gate agent was rude

A Minnesota man was ejected from a Southwest Airlines flight for a tweet calling a gate agent rude,reported CBS Minnesota Wednesday. After tweeting, the man was removed from the plane and stated he was “forced” to delete the tweet before he could re-board.

Duff Watson is an “A-list” passenger with Southwest, which gives him priority boarding. Watson was miffed when the agent in question told him his two children couldn’t board the plane as priority passengers with him, and Watson let her know that Twitter would, in fact, be hearing about this.

"Something to the effect of ‘Wow, rudest agent in Denver. Kimberly S, gate C39, not happy @SWA,’" is how Watson summarized the tweet to CBS. The family eventually boarded the plane, but according to Watson’s daughter, Lucy, the agent threatened to call the cops over the tweet. Watson relayed that the agent said her safety felt threatened.

Southwest apologized in an e-mail to Watson, gifting him and his two children $50 vouchers. Watson tells CBS he won’t be flying on Southwest again.


Contract Feudalism

What is “ Contract Feudalism” ?

Elizabeth Anderson recently coined the term “contract feudalism” to describe the increasing power of employers over employees’ lives outside the workplace.

According to Anderson, one of the benefits that the worker traditionally received in return for his submission to the bosses’ authority on the job was sovereignty over the rest of his life in the “ real world” outside of work.  Under the terms of this Taylorist bargain, the worker surrendered his sense of craftsmanship and control over his own work in return for the right to express his “ real” personality through consumption in the part of his life  that still belonged to him. This bargain assumed,

the separation of work from the home. However arbitrary and abusive the boss may have been on the factory floor, when work was over the workers could at least escape his tyranny… [T]he separation of work from home made a big difference to workers’ liberty from their employers’ wills.[1]

Wage labor, traditionally, has involved a devil’s bargain in which you “ sell your life in order to live” : you cut off the eight or twelve hours you spend at work and flush them down the toilet, in order to get the money you need  to support your real life in the real world, where you’re treated like an adult human being. And out in the real world, where your judgment and values actually matter, you try to pretend that that other hellhole doesn’t exist.

At the same time, Anderson points out, this separation of work from home depends entirely on the relative bargaining power of labor for its enforcement. (I’ll return to this, the central issue, later on.) …


Target security officer fired after reporting shoplifting

Dallas Northington spent nearly eight years working for Target in loss prevention, roaming the stores and scanning the surveillance cameras. In an episode at the Leesburg Target store in May that he said was typical, a man was allegedly captured twice on video shoplifting, and Northington responded as he said he always did: He called the Leesburg police, made a report and provided them the videos of the two incidents.

But the man in the video may have been a Fairfax County sheriff’s deputy, Northington said he soon learned. And within days, two things happened: The deputy retired from the sheriff’s office and Target fired Northington, 29, a married father of two with a third child on the way. …


"In a left-wing market anarchist society, the productive would be able to keep the product of their own labor. The disconnect between labor and results would not exist, so it would be more difficult to make a ton of cash to hoard. One would have to be continually innovate or rely on the cooperation of newly empowered fellow workers to make staggeringly high levels of money to put away. Speculation can also refer to forecasting the future direction of things, but I see the author as talking about speculation in the context of finances."


"It’s common for Democrats to depict themselves as the “party of compassion,” as opposed to the Wall Street stooges in the GOP, and resort to soccer mom rhetoric about “American working families” and “sitting around the kitchen table.” Republicans, on the other side, frame themselves as the “free enterprise” party — unlike those anti-business socialists on the other team. But the Republicans aren’t for “free enterprise”; they’re for markets rigged by the government to guarantee profits to the giant banks and Fortune 500 corporations. And the Democrats aren’t the party of “ordinary working people.” They’re for — guess what? — markets rigged by the government to guarantee profits to the giant banks and Fortune 500 corporations."


Former West Virginia Miner: We've Been Dumping Those Chemicals In The Water For Decades


"Corporate liberalism functions via a façade of opposition between a purportedly progressive statocracy and a purportedly pro-market plutocracy. The con operates by co-opting potential opponents of the establishment; those who recognise that something’s amiss with the statocratic wing are lured into supporting the plutocratic wing, and vice versa. Whenever the voters grow weary of the plutocracy, they’re offered the alleged alternative of an FDR or JFK; whenever they grow weary of the statocracy, they’re offered the alleged alternative of a Reagan or Thatcher. Perhaps the balance of power shifts slightly toward one side or the other; but the system remains essentially unchanged. (Which explains, for example, why the recent much-trumpeted power shift in Congress has resulted in precious little policy change.)"


"So the proper analog to what almost killed off the Pilgrims is not, as Stossel says, “Karl Marx” or “today’s [presumably left-wing] politicians and opinion-makers.” It’s the lord of an English manor — or a Fortune 500 corporation. But the story as it actually happened is still a testament to the evils of statism and the benefits of voluntary cooperation. The Merchant Adventurers, like the Fortune 500 companies of today, was a chartered corporation that depended entirely on benefits and legal privileges conferred by the state. The living arrangements it attempted to impose on the Plymouth settlers were the same as the extractive arrangements that prevailed on an English manor, enforced by the legal privileges the state conferred on the landed nobility. And the new system the Pilgrims replaced them with were the age-old open field system that peasant villages had spontaneously created for themselves, in the absence of coercive interference, since neolithic times."


"A free market is not a society in which all of society’s functions are performed by private, for-profit business corporations. It’s a society where all functions are performed by free, voluntary associations. That means people get whatever services they need by organizing them cooperatively with other willing participants, or persuading someone to voluntarily supply them. And nobody is forced to pay for services they don’t want."


Report: Corporations use professional spies-for-hire to monitor and undermine nonprofits | The Raw Story

A newly released report from the watchdog group Essential Information alleges that powerful corporations spy on and sabotage the very nonprofit groups dedicated to keeping them in check. …