Posts Tagged ‘Chamber of Commerce’

Tax Day: Corporate cuts taxing for workers

While no one likes paying taxes, most of us know it’s our tax dollars that support the schools, roads, and services we all use and depend on. But looking at a few statistics this tax day reveals the responsibility for keeping our public programs and economy on track isn’t shared equally — and the burden has fallen on those who can least afford it.

Middle-income families are taxed at 25 percent of their overall paycheck, compared to the average capital gains tax for the wealthiest, which are taxed at a minimum of 15 percent. Read more »


U.S. Chamber talks out both sides of its mouth

National Journal recently reported that the U.S. Chamber of Commerce plans to create a new division focused exclusively on confronting regulatory bodies. In the words of Chamber president Tom Donahue, “We cannot allow this nation to move from a government of the people to a government of regulators.”

Allow me to summon my inner Gob Bluth and respond to the Chamber’s rhetoric with an emphatic “C’mon!”

Of course, Donahue is right when he says that we are a nation of people. And because we are a nation of people, we have created a system of rules that govern our society. These rules cover, among other things, personal conduct. For example, as a people, we don’t tolerate murder, rape, or robbery. But we also have rules about our conduct in other settings, including the business world. Read more »


Chamber of Commerce to Wal-Mart: keep up the good work!

chamber of commerce logoFor the past 11 years, the United States Chamber of Commerce’s Business Civic Leadership Center has held an award ceremony to honor and showcase “companies who care.”  The Corporate Citizenship Awards are given to businesses that, in the Chamber’s view, make a positive difference in society through community service, philanthropy, skilled volunteerism, and ethical decision-making.

So of course, it’s no surprise to any of us that Wal-Mart has been nominated for the Corporate Stewardship Award.  Right? Read more »


Exposing the anti-union network

The 2010 midterm elections are right around the corner, and the assault on workers and their unions has never been louder—or better funded. The anti-union network is pumping unprecedented funds into races around the country to oppose pro-worker candidates and policies. These are the same big money extremists that fought hard against the Employee Free Choice Act, raising the minimum wage, and even equal pay for women.

It’s time to stop them—and their undisclosed donors—before they do any more damage. So we’ve put together a report that provides background info on the most nefarious of these groups: American Crossroads, Americans for Job Security, Americans for Prosperity, The Club for Growth, Freedom Works, and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. Read more »


The Stubborn Facts on the Economic Impact of Right-to-Work Laws

Michael Wasser is American Rights at Work’s summer 2010 research intern.

Proponents of so-called “right-to-work laws,” such as the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the National Right to Work Committee, argue that they create a more business-friendly environment and lead to economic growth for states and their residents.

But is that really the case?

As Jack Hough noted in a recent Smart Money article, new research suggests that the supposed economic benefits of right-to-work laws may be little more than useful rhetoric for the law’s supporters. Read more »


Chamber of Commerce thinks money can buy everything

commerce logoThe Chamber of Commerce wants their opinions to be heard, and they’re more than willing to spend hundreds of millions of dollars to make sure our elected officials get the message loud and clear.

Over the weekend, the Associated Press ran a very interesting article that exposes how the Chamber is abusing the recent easing of legal restraints on corporate political activities. The new lack of restrictions allows organizations like the Chamber to donate exorbitant amounts of money to fight the Obama administration and support the GOP.

As the United States’ largest business lobbying organization, they have pledged to spend $75 million in this year’s election. Many of the candidates they have chosen to back up adamantly refuse to support workers’ rights. And all of that is on top of a lobbying effort that already has cost the organization nearly $190 million since Barack Obama became president in January 2009.

“Elections have consequences, votes matter,” said Bill Miller, the chamber’s political director. “And we’re going to go out and engage in an effort to try and ensure we have people on Capitol Hill that will listen to our arguments and propose and promote ideas that are more supportive of the free enterprise system.”

While everyone has the right to financially support the people they want to see elected, it’s clear that this kind of spending by the Chamber can’t be matched by ordinary Americans. And to buy that kind of influence while claiming to represent all business owners in the United States is dishonest, to say the least. The Chamber is taking way too many liberties with their words and their wallet.

Fortunately, workers’ rights advocates are holding the Chamber accountable. Check out Change to Win’s watchdog website U.S. Chamber Watch to get the latest updates on the lobbying organization’s misdoings.


Chamber to women: get out of the office and make me a sandwich

angry housewife

On the 90th anniversary of the passing of the 19th amendment, which allows for equal voting rights for women, the Chamber of Commerce decided to take a moment to let the Internet know they’re still peeved by all these “equal rights” shenanigans.

In a blog post simply entitled “Equality, Suffrage and a Fetish for Money,” Chamber blogger Brad Peck characterized women’s fight for pay equity as nothing more than a “fetish for money,” and said women complaining about their pay should focus instead on “choosing the right partner at home.”

Note to the Chamber of Commerce: open mouth. Now insert foot.

Check out Michael Whitney’s take on the ridiculous situation over at Firedoglake.  Apparently, the Chamber of Commerce has quite the history of dissing women.


Dear Wall Street, Enough is enough.

It turns out that Wall Street is back to its old tricks—raking in the big bucks while Main Street struggles just to make ends meet. In fact, as Steven Pearlstein reported in today’s Washington Post, corporate profits are higher than ever, but millions of Americans are still out of work.

Why? Because corporations are taking advantage of the economic crisis to put the squeeze on workers—demanding more hours for less pay—instead of rehiring workers who lost their jobs as a result of Wall Street’s recklessness. In other words, corporate CEOs are benefiting from the same crisis they created, the same crisis that left so many working families out in the cold. Read more »


Getting on the right side of history: supporting the Paycheck Fairness Act

Vice President Joe Biden Women in the United States make 77 cents for every dollar that men earn for the same work.

And even though women won the right to make as much as their male counterparts decades ago, weak federal enforcement has prevented equal pay from actually occurring in many workplaces. And for many women, the consequences of earning less than their male counterparts can be life-altering, like not having enough money to retire without becoming an economic burden to their families.

The American Rights at Work staff made a field trip across D.C. yesterday to listen to some impassioned speeches about the Paycheck Fairness Act at a White House Middle Class Task Force event.  Awaiting a vote by the Senate, the Paycheck Fairness Act requires employers to provide a legitimate reason for paying women and men performing the same job different salaries.

Read more »


And the survey says…the Chamber’s wrong

chamber of commerce logoLast week the U.S. Chamber of Commerce released their results from a survey of 300 small business owners, conducted during July 6-8.  But even though the Chamber designed the questions with the help of the Lombardo Consulting Group, the answers weren’t exactly in their favor.

According to Question 18 of the survey, 52 percent of the small businesses stated they believe that “labor unions have a positive impact or no impact on job creation.”  We don’t think that was the response the Chamber was looking for…

Coincidentally, last March American Rights at Work conducted its own survey of small business owners. As you’ll notice, our results and the Chamber’s results dovetail quite nicely. Read more »