Capital & Main’s Latest News Section.
Maybe you will be one of the 10,000 people expected at a June 30th protest in L.A.’s Chinatown against a controversial plan to open a Walmart store there. The uber-retailer’s reputation for wrecking the atmosphere of historic districts like Chinatown, and posing a potential threat to local businesses, has generated strong resistance to plans for a 33,000 square-foot “express” Walmart at Cesar Chavez and Grand avenues.
The fight isn’t only about Chinatown–it’s about all of Los Angeles, because Walmart may be coming to a corner near you. Walmart has designs on locations around L.A. County to gain a foothold in the local urban grocery market.
The retailing behemoth needs to shore up sagging sales and stagnating stock prices, which requires expansion into U.S. urban markets. (Rural and suburban areas across the country have reached the Walmart saturation point.) But Walmart has encountered stubborn opposition in urban centers where residents take issue with its penchant for keeping its employees in low-wage,
Few American institutions have been subjected to such a consistent stream of vitriol and assault as the minimum wage, which celebrates its 74th birthday this week. The first federal minimum wage was established when FDR signed the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) on June 25, 1938. The FLSA also established the eight-hour day, paid overtime and child labor protections into federal law. Since then, it has been amended nine times to expand coverage and to raise the wage to keep it in line with the nation’s economic growth.
Business leaders, industry associations, politicians and more recently think tanks have opposed the FLSA and every legislative amendment since. They said it would destroy American civilization, kill jobs and hurt black people. Business owners predicted they would be forced into bankruptcy.
One business opponent of the 1938 legislation even warned that the minimum wage would lead to the decline of the American empire.
RePower LA’s proposal “appears to be one of those rare public policy ideas that generates not only broad, but enthusiastic support from the electorate. Voters appreciate that it not only creates needed jobs, opportunities with union benefits, but it does so while cleaning our air, reducing electricity bills for 10,000 homes and businesses a year, and lowering electricity generating costs for generations
Art allows us to peer into the lives of people we may ordinarily not cross paths with and see the world through their eyes. LAANE’s Construction Careers project did exactly that last night at its photography exhibit and mixer at the Solidarity Ink gallery space in Lincoln Heights. Sixty InterAct members and community leaders mingled with construction workers in a melting pot of wine, cheese and art-gazing.
The goal: to holistically present the lives of ordinary people in the hard-construction industry. We wanted to paint a broad picture of workers from diverse backgrounds, showing them in their homes, neighborhoods and worksites. We strove to portray workers with a sense of grace, documenting intimate moments with their families and the pride that they take every day, in the words of several workers, in “building something that will last.”
The multifaceted realities of Tarita, Luis, Stefanie, and Jabari – four workers from different ethnicities,
Reading [Robert] Caro’s biographies of LBJ has become a multi-generational experience in our family. At 15, my son, who had never read anything more than Harry Potter, became enthralled with them, devouring the first three. This year, he bought the newest volume as my birthday present, I got my dad the book for Father’s Day, and my dad gave the book to my son for his birthday.
Much of our great fascination with Lyndon Johnson is the duality of his character: willing to lie and cheat, devoid of any principles on his path to power, and then as president, using that power to achieve lofty, principled goals that transformed our nation forever.
As Caro describes in the latest volume, The Passage of Power, as LBJ was preparing to address Congress just after assuming the presidency, “a fierce debate” between his advisors “erupted – over the emphasis to be given in the speech to civil rights.” As the discussion went on until 2:30 in the morning,