Bankrupt coal mining company Patriot Coal will be able to void its agreement with the United Mine Workers union (UMWA) and stop funding pensions for retired miners, thanks to a ruling from the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in the Eastern District of Missouri. In a decision dated May 29, Judge Kathy A. Surratt-States said that the failing company was authorized to rip up its union collective bargaining agreements as part of a plan to trim $150 million in annual labor costs during Chapter 11 restructuring. read more
Fast food workers in Seattle, Wash., initiated a work stoppage Wednesday night in the first strike of its kind to occur in the American West. Like the strikers in New York, St. Louis, Detroit, Chicago and Milwaukee, fast food workers in Seattle are demanding a wage of $15 per hour and the right to form a union without retaliation. read more
1. The New York City bike share is now, officially, underway. To celebrate, The New York Times has launched "Bike Share Derby," a race between bikers and non-bikers. Watch to find out who wins.
2. Legendary newscaster Larry King, formerly of Larry King Live, has decided to come out of retirement and announced his new political show on the RT network. Buzzfeed created a bunch of really funny GIFs to pay homage to the King. Watch the original here:
On Tuesday, Colorado Governor (and staunch marijuana legalization opponent), John Hickenlooper, signed 6 landmark bills formalizing the legalization of marijuana in the state. Last November, voters passed Amendment 64, 55% to 44%, making Colorado first state in the union to legalize (thereby wholly decriminalizing) the recreational use and sale of pot. Colorado adults, 21 years and older, can now enjoy smoking a joint or eating a THC chocolate truffle without paranoia about getting caught. read more
Members of the Congressional Progressive Caucus will soon begin a nationwide tour intended to "highlight the problem of stagnant and low wages for American workers," caucus co-chair Democratic Rep. Keith Ellison of Minnesota told msnbc Wednesday. Dubbed the "Raise Up America" campaign, the tour will officially launch on June 22 at the Netroots Nation conference in San Jose, California. read more
The Chicago Teachers Union (CTU) and a group of Chicago parents are asking a circuit court to block the school board from shutting down ten of the city's schools. In a lawsuit filed on Wednesday, the plaintiffs claim that Chicago Public Schools (CPS) violated its own guidelines by disregarding the recommendations of independent hearing officers who objected to the closures. read more
New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie was soaking up the revelry around the Jersey Shore’s post-Hurricane Sandy reopening this Memorial Day, ceremoniously cutting a monstrous ribbon and leading President Obama and packs of cameras around the boardwalk.
Christie's handling of the superstorm earned him bipartisan praise and record-high popularity, but now almost eight months out since Sandy struck New Jersey's coast, Christie's response to the storm is taking shape on political sides.
1. A JC Penny billboard featuring a teapot resembling Adolf Hitler surfaced today. We can categorize this one under #EternallyTooSoon.
2. Some dude slapped Beyonce's rear. Ugh, gross, and not the most amazing thing on the internet. What is the most amazing thing on the internet is her response:
3. Don't you want to watch the newest installment of: "Developers Gone Wild." Yeah, actually we think you do. The good folks over at NPR have developed an interactive guide with every gag ever from every episode ever. Enjoy.
About 100 Walmart employees from various stores around the country went on strike Tuesday morning, saying they would not return to work until at least June 7, the date of Walmart's annual shareholder meeting. This walkout, though fairly small compared to similar events which occurred in the past six months, is expected to last significantly longer.
A Walmart spokesperson called the strike a "publicity stunt." read more