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Don't thank Bezos for giving Amazon workers a much-needed raise.




‘The harm induced by Amazon is very real.’ Photograph: Alex Wong/Getty Images

  • Jeff Bezos runs a powerful monopoly that causes him to exert huge power and control. We shouldn’t be praising him but tackling his power.
  • Related: Amazon Is Used to Promote White Supremacist Merchandise and Views.

Matt Stoller, the Guardian like this are funded, not by sponsors or advertisers, but by readers like you, Chip in, sign up and get on board with all reader supported Evergreene Digest now!. You are needed and welcome here.

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Dave & the Crew

Thu 4 Oct 2018 | Watching the cheering of Amazon warehouse workers after being told they were getting a raise of $15/hour, it would be easy to see the wage bump as a great victory for working people. Senator Bernie Sanders thanked Amazon’s CEO, Jeff Bezos, profusely, “What Mr Bezos has done today is not only enormously important for Amazon’s hundreds of thousands of employees, it could well be a shot heard around the world.” He encouraged companies like McDonald’s and Walmart to follow Amazon’s lead.

With these expressions of gratitude, Senator Sanders made the case that the problem at play isn’t the power of Jeff Bezos, but that Bezos underpays his workers. For sure, this is a problem, but it is not the central challenge of Amazon. The real problem with Amazon is that Jeff Bezos controls essential infrastructure upon which nearly all American citizens rely, and he uses it to serve himself.

Matt Stoller is fellow at the Open Markets Institute, where he is researching the history of the relationship between concentrated financial power and the Democratic party in the 20th century.

Full story …


Amazon Is Used to Promote White Supremacist Merchandise and Views, Report Says. Mihir Zaveri, New York (NY) Times, which reported a net income of more than $1.6 billion in the first quarter of this year, is facing criticism that hate groups use it to sell merchandise and promote their ideas.Credit: Bryan Anselm for the New York Times

  • Amazon is helping to line the pockets of hate groups.
  • “This is a conversation about morals and ethics and their own terms of service,” said Danielle Citron, a professor at the University of Maryland Carey School of Law and author of the book “Hate Crimes in Cyberspace.”
  • Related: How did we let modern slavery become part of our everyday lives? Justice!  No Peace!  Please share this post.


A Few Good Men: Portraits of Homelessness

  • The man held a sign on a piece of used cardboard, the word “Hungry” scrawled with a black magic marker.  I stopped, and offered him a banana out of my lunch bag.  He said he didn’t eat them.  I dug into the bag.  I had some walnuts and raisins, which I offered.  He ate walnuts, and his partner, well, she ate raisins.
  • Related: Special Report | The Franklin Hiawatha Encampment

Daniel Lichtenstein-Boris,  LA Progressive

October 3, 2018 | A Salute from the Sidewalk

One morning I went to take the train to work.  A man sat across from the entrance of the Hollywood/Western Red line station.  Scrawny, in his early 30’s, he held a sign that read, “Homeless Hungry Disabled Vet.”  I had no food or cash.  All I did was tell him sheepishly, “Sorry, I don’t have anything.”  Most commuters pretended he did not exist; they looked down at their feet, walking briskly past.  “Thank you for your service,” I gave him a sheepish salute as I walked by.

Exiting the train station at my stop, walking to work on sidewalks where homeless sleep on cardboard boxes wrapped in soiled blankets covered by clear plastic that sticks to garmentslikeshrink wrapped cellophane, I saw a man wearing a Vietnam Veterans ball cap—a white man with a full head of snow-white hair puffing out from beneath his hat.  His beard extended a foot beneath his chin, unkempt full of scraggly salt and peppered gristles growing in different directions.  The six-foot-five vet stood upright with perfect posture.  He looked destitute, and in no rush, as he meandered across the sidewalk like he had nothing to do but loiter all day.

Daniel Lichtenstein-Boris has been engaged in struggles for social justice for 20 years, including over 10 as a professional union and community organizer, researcher, and campaigner.

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Special Report | The Franklin Hiawatha Encampment, Week Ending September 22, 2018, Compiled by David Culver, Ed., Evergreene Digest

Story 1: Franklin/Hiawatha Encampment * Story 2: Frequently Asked Questions * Story 3: How To Help * Story 4: ‘Wall Of Forgotten Natives’ Lays Bare Mpls. Housing Crisis * Story 5: ‘A blessing,’ ‘a family,’ and ‘a shame on Minneapolis’: Voices from the Hiawatha Avenue homeless encampment * Story 6: Minneapolis officials pledge action to help residentsofhomeless encampment

Help expand your impact by forwarding this story to any friends looking to get involved in 2018.


Becoming Serfs 2016 demonstration in Manhattan's Zuccotti Park, where the Occupy Wall Street movement started five years earlier. (Corinne Segal /

  • The global rich have demolished institutions that once protected the working class and dismantled our democracy to orchestrate the largest transfer of wealth upward in over a century.
  • Related: The Path Back to Equality Leads Through Unions

Chris Hedges, Truthdig stay on top of important articles like these, sign up here to receive the latest updates from all reader supported Evergreene Digest



August 26, 2018 | You know the statistics. Income inequality in the United States has not been this pronounced in over a century. The top 10 percent has 50 percent of the country’s income, and the upper 1 percent has 20 percent of the country’s income. A quarter of American workers struggle on wages of less than $10 an hour, putting them below the poverty line, while the income of the average CEO of a major corporation is more than 300 times the pay of his or her average worker, a massive increase given that in the 1950s the average CEO made 20 times what his or her worker made. This income inequality is global. The richest 1 percent of the world’s population controls 40 percent of the world’s wealth. And it is getting worse.

What will the consequences of this inequality be economically and politically? How much worse will it get with the imposition of austerity programs and a new tax code that slashes rates for corporations, allowing companies to hoard money or buy back their own stock rather than invest in the economy? How will we endure as health care insurance premiums steadily rise and social and public welfare programs such as Medicaid, Pell Grants and food stamps are cut? And under the tax code revision signed by President Trump in December, rates will increase over the long term for the working class. Over the next decade, the revision will cost the nation roughly $1.5 trillion. Where will this end? Chris Hedges, a weekly columnist for Truthdig, is a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist who has reported from more than 50 countries, specializing in American politics and society.

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The Path Back to Equality Leads Through Unions, Nathan Pippenger, Democracy

  • Nation summarizes an important new finding: Americans of the mid-twentieth century had unions to thank for their booming, egalitarian economy.
  • Related: New Study Confirms That American Workers Are Getting Ripped Off.
 Justice!  No Peace!  Please share this post.


The Path Back to Equality Leads Through Unions

  • The Nation summarizes an important new finding: Americans of the mid-twentieth century had unions to thank for their booming, egalitarian economy.
  • Related: New Study Confirms That American Workers Are Getting Ripped Off.

Nathan Pippenger, Democracy If you like reading this article, consider joining the crew of all reader-supported Evergreene Digest by contributing the equivalent of a cafe latte a month--using the donation button to the right—so we can bring you more just like it.


June 1, 2018 | rom the end of World War II until about 1980, the United States was in the fortunate position of benefiting from two simultaneous trends: The economy prospered as wages became more equal (an era known as the “Great Compression”). There’s still some debate among economists about exactly why this happened, an argument with obvious relevance to our own era of deep inequality. But according to a new study highlighted by Mike Konczal in The Nation, the role of one factor is now undeniable: unions. Summarizing the new research, Konczal writes that “the growth of union membership—to a height of nearly 30 percent in 1955, before falling to its current low of 10.7 percent—explains the Great Compression every bit as much as theories about education or any other single factor.” knocks the economics profession for “casually dismissing the role of unions” and gently ribs the idea that anybody would be surprised by “the statement ‘unions help workers.’” But as he acknowledges, detailed data on union membership was unavailable until recently—and moreover, there’s at least the possibility that unions could actually increase overall inequality, by widening the wage gap between their members and non-unionized workers. As Timothy Noah noted in his book The Great Divergence, this was actually what most economists believed until the 1980s. Konczal doesn’t precisely comment on the older idea that unions might actually exacerbate inequality, but he does refer to the theory that “since unions merely transfer wealth among workers, they wouldn’t lower inequality overall and might even slow economic growth.” It turns out that idea is probably mistaken as well. In fact, the results seem to effectively counter all the familiar theories about the possible negative effects of unionization on either income equality or economic growth—all while demonstrating that unions were more diverse, in terms of both skill and racial composition, than is widely believed.

Nathan Pippenger is a contributing editor at Democracy.

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New Study Confirms That American Workers Are Getting Ripped Off. Eric Levitz, New York Magazine we fight. Photo: Scott Olson/Getty Images

(Trump's) right to claim that Americans are getting the short end. But the primary cause of that fact isn’t bad trade agreements or “job killing” regulations — its the union-busting laws and court rulings that the president has done so much to abet.

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David Culver, Publisher and Editor, Evergreene Digest