Tuesday, March 13, 2012

476 Brazil auto industry has 65 % local-content requirement; China has close to 90%. Why is our industry unprotected?

Brazil auto industry has 65 % local-content requirement; China has close
to 90%. Why is our industry unprotected?

(1) Re: "Greece Should ‘Default Big" - Blejer
(2) Worker Bees disillusioned with London/ Wall St beekeepers - Israel
(3) Trans-Pacific Partnership Free Trade Agreement: DON’T TRADE AWAY HEALTH
(4) Chicago auto workers denounce UAW-Ford two-tier wage system
(5) Australia's new Federal Horticulture Award has one 10 min smoko a
day; State Award had 20 min (2x10 min)
(6) Warren Buffett's cure for the US Economy
(7) Ron Paul would extend Bush tax-cuts for the rich
(8) The Robin Hood Tax - a tax on speculative transactions (not on
everyday banking transactions)
(9) Brazil auto industry has 65 % local-content requirement; China has
close to 90%. Why is our industry unprotected?

(1) Re: "Greece Should ‘Default Big" - Blejer

Date: Thu, 6 Oct 2011 13:08:20 -0300 From: Juan Gauna <jgalindes@gmail.com>

Dear Peter,

Regarding "Greece Should ‘Default Big"


As an Argentinean I'll like to highlight this Mr.Blejer according to an
article by a good friend of mine,Mr Adrian Salbuchi,as follows(please
excuse me ,it is in spanish but I'm sure you'll dissimulate the

"También vemos como el senador Duhalde le entregó al inicio de su
gestión en enero 2002 nada más y nada menos que el manejo del Banco
Central a un “nuevo miembro” del mundialismo: Mario Blejer, cuyo
Curriculum Vitae en Internet indica como su domicilio profesional
actual: Monetary and Exchange Affairs Dept, International Monetary Fund,
700 19th Street NW, Washington DC – Tel: 202-623-8809, describiendo que
tiene un doctorado en Economía de la Universidad de Chicago (1975), en
la famosa escuela monetarista de Milton Friedman. Nacido en Córdoba,
Blejer también tiene titulos en Economia de la Universidad Hebrea de
Jerusalen (es docente en la Walter Rathenau Professor of Economics), ha
sido profesor en la Universidad de Boston, en la NYU – New York
University, y funcionario directivo del Banco Mundial, en la Johns
Hopkins University, y George Washington University.

En Febrero 2002, Blejer disertó en la Americas Society de Nueva York con
motivo de un “almuerzo ofrecido en su honor”. La misma Americas Society
que lo instaló a Cavallo en el poder el año pasado y que tiene como
miembros argentinos a Amalia Lacroze de Fortabat, Arnaldo Musich,
Octavio Caraballo, Eduardo Amadeo, Federico Zorraquín y al prófugo de la
Justicia argentina, José Rohm titular del Banco General de Negocios
cerrado por fraude con motivo de la fuga de divisas antes y durante el
“corralito”. Su hermano Carlos Rohm, actualmente se halla preso por esta
misma causa. Según nos enteramos en “Clarin”, “en su primera
presentacion en el exterior Blejer cayó bien(meqans he was very
wellcomed)”. Tras su reciente renuncia al Banco Central, pasó a ser
director de capacitación en el Bank of England y asesor director de su
gobernador, Sir Edward George. El reemplazante de Blejer al frente del
Banco Central es el joven Alfonso Prat Gay, hasta hace poco directivo
del JP Morgan securities de Londres, quien fuera recomendado, entre
otros, por Eduardo Amadeo (flamante embajador argentino en EEUU y
miembro de la Americas Society). Todo siempre queda en familia…."

As you see Blejer belongs to "mundialism" a term we use to identify the
prominently jewish financial elite.

So his assertives on Greece may indicate the way those "mundialistas"
wants events to unfold.
With regards,Juan

(2) Worker Bees disillusioned with London/ Wall St beekeepers - Israel

From: israel shamir <israel.shamir@gmail.com> Sent: Monday, October 10,
2011 9:38 AM

Caribbean Sea Pirates in Crisis

By Israel Shamir

(A lecture on Economics delivered at Rhodes Forum on October 9, 2011)

Edited by Ken Freeland


The crisis peaking in Britain is of a Caribbean-sea-pirate type: long
time no trophies, while lifestyle has to be maintained. Neoliberal
policies have undermined the toughest folk on earth, hard-working,
prudent, obedient, stiff-upper-lipped red-faced Brits, the people who
managed India, burned down the White House and withstood Hitler. Their
backbone – Yorkshire miners and Sheffield steel workers – was broken by
their Golders Green grocer-at-large, a.k.a. the Iron Lady. She folded
down the industries, and turned the Isles into a Tortuga-like pirate
paradise, a place for financiers to relax, unwind and plan their raids.

England has become the most godless society in the world. Buses with the
logo “There is no God” cruise London. In the Globe theatre, Mysteries
are staged, purported to be revivals of Tony Harrison’s 1977 production
based on medieval British plays but, in direct opposition to the
previous production and to the old original, it is overtly
anti-Christian. Instead of the Jewish high priest and his coterie, the
evil guys are … Christian priests in full dress. The Holy Virgin is
presented as a young coloured tart in a short dress. Not a single voice
of protest has sounded in England. But you can be sure that if director
Deborah Bruce had put rabbis back into the place of the priests, we'd
have never heard the end of it.

England is home to al Fayed and Abramovich and to millions of immigrants
imported to service them. The English provided financial services, ran
security companies, charged a lot for education. The country went
upmarket, and lost its productive base, just as the tulip-adoring Dutch
did in 17th century. Now, if they do not rob, they have nothing to live
off of. They need to fleece foreigners just to make ends meet.

Now they are being hit by a Crisis of Confidence. Not only do ordinary
people feel they have been cheated once too many, but the powerful and
rich outsiders share the feeling, which is particularly strong in Russia
and other post-Soviet states, in the oil-producing states, in countries
with national industries. This feeling has been translated into action:

·      Hugo Chavez has
demanded his physical gold back;
·      Vladimir Putin has declared his candidacy for the post of President;
·      Russian Finance Minister Alexei Kudrin, the main proponent of
Russian Sovereign Wealth Fund, has been fired.
·      Russia has decided to dramatically increase military spending;
this is fallout from the Libya War.

The fate of Qaddafi hovers like worrying Hamlet’s father’s spirit over
many presidential and managerial desks. The Libyan leader amassed quite
a fortune, some for himself and his family, some for his nation, placed
it in various banks, funds and shelters, and it turns out that instead
of greenbacks he could have amassed so many beautiful reddish maple
leaves with greater satisfaction and safety. With a wave of their hands,
the US and its allies froze the assets and later stole them. Some assets
were given to arbitrarily chosen Libyans, a.k.a. “Benghazi rebels”, some
were used to pay for the dog food that was airlifted to Tripoli to feed
people made destitute by the NATO strikes

This was the biggest robbery of a sovereign state ever, and the biggest
robbery of private fortunes as well. And it taught many nasty and greedy
people a lesson in Gospel truth: Do not lay up for yourselves treasures
on earth, where thieves break in and steal. These people thought that
they could find a safe refuge from despotic rulers, rebellious masses
and ordinary robbers by placing their wealth in the safekeeping of the
Swiss gnomes or some other civilised environment. Now they've learned
that electronic money in Cayman Islands is no safer than the folded
20-dollar bills under your mattress. What a shock!

Why does this cause a crisis? The corrupt officials and wealthy tycoons
of the outer world, that is, outside of the US and Western Europe, are
the powerful secret weapon of capitalism. When capitalism was on the
verge of collapse, this doomsday weapon was used, the tables were turned
upon socialism, and the USSR collapsed. Its wealth was stolen by these
men and women, and delivered to the Western banks, to power another
twenty years of luxury for bankers.

Since then, the officials and tycoons have functioned like bees, busily
collecting the sweet sweat of the ordinary citizens’ brow. They siphon
their takings into overseas banks - beehives, thinking it is safe. The
West has encouraged them to think this way. They have spread rumours
that Putin and Lukashenko have put away billions into Western banks for
a rainy day. Their media have told stories of oligarchs who were able to
escape to their riches when they fell from grace. Many silly and corrupt
officials and greedy businessmen believed it and kept collecting honey.

This honey collection is the best-guarded secret of capitalist
superiority. It is based of human weakness. Drug mafias do the same:
they produce and sell drugs and extract money to keep in the banks. This
works instead of savings, and even better. When economists bewail low
rate of savings in the US, they forget to count savings executed via
drug cartels. This was one of the reasons of the US ten years stay in
Afghanistan: the drugs fuel banking system.

Privatisation is another great tool: the privatised properties feed so
many derivatives produced by the bankers. The privatisers need the
banks, and to the banks they take their profits. In the post-soviet
space, the officials charge their commission in the form of bribes, and
these moneys also go to the banks.

Thus, the corrupt officials, businessmen and drug barons perform an
important function for the world financial system: the Western bankers
did not have to go to remote Russian town or Indian village to squeeze a
few roubles or rupees from a worker. The bees bring honey to the beehive.

With the robbery of Libya, even the silliest and most corrupt official
in Russia or Kazakhstan has discovered what bees painfully learn, too.
When beehives are full of honey, the beekeeper smokes the bees away and
collects the product. The bees may have planned to use it for their
retirement or for home improvement, but they sadly discover that humans
have other plans for their honey. The first wave of Crisis 2008 was the
beginning of a smoking-out operation; the Libya campaign is the second
stage showing what can be done to crisis-resistant bees.

Given the total information superiority of the Masters of Discourse,
such robbery can be justified at any time. Russian wealthy men suspected
they couldn’t just salt away a billon and run to Bahamas. I have heard
about the men who tried: when they came to collect, they were told that
their visa had expired, that they would have to produce proof it was
honestly earned, or that it was gone for some good reason.

Two countries catered to the runaways: Britain and Israel. The Jewish
billionaires who run to Israel were duly fleeced by the Jewish state.
Nevzlin had to contribute half of his wealth to some doubtful Israeli
enterprises; Gaydamak was ruined almost to the point of bankruptcy.
Gusinsky was run from jail to jail and was ripped off by established
Israeli families. Britain provides refuge for the runaway oligarchs and
shields them from criminal investigation. It fleeces them well: the
fabulous billions of Boris Berezovsky were shrunk down to a few million.
But the rest still hoped that they would be allowed to keep some of
their illegal gains in the comfort of the West if they abide by
Washington’s orders. Now this hope, too, is fading away.

The bees do not deliver honey anymore. There are more ways of getting
honey. The Western banks and states promoted their loans and they
allowed the recipient politicians to steal the loans, as Perkins has
explained. But now this method is less popular, as the odds of
successfully stashing stolen goods have gone down considerably. Much
hated in the West Vladimir Putin, the past and future president of
Russia, paid off all Russia’s debts at first occasion, while another
hated “dictator”, Lukashenko, also refused IMF loans.

Then, there are the
sovereign wealth funds. The oil-producing countries usually keep a big
part of their earnings in the US and the UK. These funds are held
hostage to the good behaviour of the producer. Iran lost its funds after
embracing an Islamic regime. Some Russians consider it a form of tribute
their country pays to their vanquisher in the Cold War. They even
connect Breivik’s attack to Norway’s plan to repatriate its SWF, a plan
that is anathema to the US. There is no practical reason for Russia to
keep its money invested in US funds for very low interest while Russian
industries pay high interest on such borrowed money. And as we know,
these funds may be frozen or seized any moment. They can also disappear
as a result of imprudent investment as once happened to Swedish and
Norwegian pension funds.

For 11 years, Alexei Kudrin was finance minister of the Russian
Federation. He was the most vocal and influential proponent of the
US-held funds among Russian officials, and he was duly applauded as a
prudent and excellent financier. A few days ago he expressed his
dissatisfaction with President Medvedev’s plan to increase military
spending dramatically. He was sacked right away. This was quite a shock
for the man who considered himself a cut above; it was a shock for his

The Wikileaks cables reveal that Kudrin was considered by the US Embassy
the “most transparent and realistic senior GOR interlocutor on economic
issues. He has also been the most forward-leaning in seeking economic
cooperation with the U.S. and other western countries”. Among Russian
officials, some find him "irritating" and accuse him of treason, say the
cables. Kudrin supported a soft line in foreign policy and opposed the
line represented by Putin’s Munich speech. At the peak of the 2008
crisis, he gave money to the banks and completely stopped government
spending for six months. Incidentally, Kudrin was never charged with
huge fraud and theft of so-called Kuwait and Algeria Debts Affairs,
though his deputy has spent a few months in jail. This neo-liberal,
monetarist, pro-western figure at the key position was lost to the West
within a few weeks of the fall of Tripoli. And that bodes ill for the
western beneficiaries of the Russian SWF, whether it is repatriated or
allowed to wither.

This is the reason for the crisis. Even the bad guys have lost
confidence in the system. The collapse of the USSR postponed the crisis
that was long overdue. So much wealth was taken out of the dismembered
chunk of the USSR! The successor-countries were robbed, and their robbed
goods used to subsidise a better life of the West. The bankers and
financiers got used to living well while controlling the streams of cash
and assets. But they forgot an important rule of beekeepers: leave some
honey in the hive, otherwise the bees will not bring more product. They
ripped off too much, from too many people, and now the people have lost
whatever confidence they had in the system.

(3) Trans-Pacific Partnership Free Trade Agreement: DON’T TRADE AWAY HEALTH


The Australian government is negotiating a  Trans-Pacific Partnership
(TPPA) free trade  agreement with the US, New Zealand,  Chile, Peru,
Brunei, Singapore, Malaysia  and Vietnam. But the agenda on health
issues is being set by giant US pharmaceutical  and tobacco
corporations. They have made  submissions stating that they want to use
  the negotiations to:

• impose US intellectual property laws which give  pharmaceutical
corporations more rights to charge   higher prices for longer periods
for medicines;

• restrict the ability of governments to provide  medicines at
affordable prices through schemes like   the Australian Pharmaceutical
Benefits Scheme (PBS);

• give corporations like Philip Morris the right to sue   governments
for millions of dollars when they try to  protect public health through
regulation like the  tobacco plain packaging legislation.  We need to
ensure the Australian government stands by its  policies and does not
agree to these proposals.  US pharmaceutical companies want more
intellectual property rights to charge high  prices for longer

Intellectual property law already gives the inventor of new  medicines
the right to a patent, which means they can  charge monopoly prices for
20 years before anyone else has  the right to produce a cheaper generic
form of the same  medicine. US pharmaceutical companies want to use the
  TPPA to get other countries to agree to changes which  give more
rights to patent holders1. This would mean more  than 20 years of
monopoly prices, and would delay cheaper  generic drugs from becoming
available. This is not about  free trade, but about greater rights for
these corporations  to charge high prices for a longer time. This would
be also a  disaster for the developing countries in the TPPA, as it
would  make many medicines completely unaffordable for them.  In April
2011 the Australian government responded to  public pressure and
announced in its new trade policy that  it would not agree to increase
intellectual property rights in  trade agreements2. But US corporations
and the US Trade  Representative are still pushing for these rights in
the TPPA  negotiations. The Australian government should stand by its
policy not to agree to increase intellectual property rights  and should
not sign an agreement that is not consistent  with this policy.

US companies want to reduce access to affordable medicines through the
PBS {Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme}

In the US where the government does not have the same  control over the
price of medicines as the Australian  Government does, the wholesale
prices of medicines are  three to ten times the prices paid in
Australia, and many  people cannot afford to buy medicines.  In contrast
to the US, the Australian PBS is based on  the principle that everyone
should have access to  affordable medicines. Under the PBS, the
wholesale price of  medicines is lower than in the US because health
experts  compare the price and effectiveness of new medicines with the
price of cheaper generic medicines with the same  health effects. This
results in a lower wholesale price for the  pharmaceutical companies,
which is why they oppose it.  The government then subsidises the retail
price we pay at  the chemist, currently $5.60 for pensioners and $34.20
for  others. As well as keeping the prices of medicines low for
consumers, the lower wholesale price reduces the cost to  the taxpayer.
This makes the PBS more sustainable in the  long term.

US pharmaceutical companies argue that the PBS is a barrier  to trade.
They want to be able to charge higher wholesale  prices for new
medicines, which would increase the cost of  the PBS and lead to higher
retail prices at the chemist. They  want changes which would enable them
to appeal against  PBS decisions more easily and argue for higher prices
for  some medicines. They also want to advertise their products  direct
to consumers. But health experts generally agree that  this leads to
overprescribing, and it is not an accepted prac-  tice except in the US.
Australian government policy says  that it will not agree to changes
which would weaken the  PBS, but the companies and the US Trade
Representative are  pushing for them in the TPPA negotiations. The
Australian  government should not agree to these changes US Tobacco
Corporations want special  rights to sue governments for damages

US corporations like Philip Morris tobacco company want  special rights
in the TPPA for individual companies to sue  governments for damages if
their investments have been  harmed by a particular law or policy3.
These disputes, known  as investor-state disputes, are heard by
international  investment tribunals, which give priority to the
interests of  the corporations, not to the public interest. There are no
  health experts involved in these tribunals.

Using these special rights in the North American Free Trade  Agreement,
US corporations have sued governments for  millions of dollars over
health and environmental  legislation. International corporations can
use their  subsidiaries to find a forum which allows them to sue. For
example, Philip Morris is an international company based in  the United
States. However, it recently claimed to be a Swiss  company in order to
use a Swiss investment agreement with  Uruguay to sue the Uruguayan
government over restrictions  on tobacco advertising. It has also
claimed to be a Hong  Kong company in order to sue the Australian
government  for its proposed tobacco plain packaging legislation, using
  an obscure 1993 Hong Kong – Australia bilateral investment  treaty.

Australian trade policy states that Australia will not  support these
special rights for investors to sue governments  and will not seek them
from other trading partners. But US  companies and the US Trade
Representative are still pushing  strongly for them in the TPPA. The
Australian government should not agree to investor-state dispute
processes being  included in the TPPA.

What you can do

The TPPA negotiations are continuing through 2011  and a framework
agreement is expected in November.  The negotiations are held in secret
and the danger is that  the Australian government could agree to some of
these  policies in return for access to other US markets. We must  hold
our government accountable and ensure that this does  not happen.

The Australian Fair Trade and the Investment Network has  a website
(www.aftinet.org.au) with resources that you can  use to:

• Send a message to the Trade Minister and the Health  Minister, and get
your organisation to do so

• Raise the issues with your local Member of Parliament

• Join our mailing list to get regular updates on the campaign

• Donate to support the campaign

The Australian Fair Trade and Investment Network,
Level 3, 110 Kippax Street, Surry Hills NSW 2010.
Email: campaign@aftinet.org.au, website: www.aftinet.org.au
phone: 02 9212 7242

1Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America, March 10, 2009,
Submission to the Office of the Trade Representative, found at
www.regulations.gov.search/regs/home.html #docketDetail?R=0900006480fa6a1

Leaked US intellectual property proposals found at

2Australian Government Trade Policy April 12, 2011 found at

3Submission of Philip Morris International in response to the request
for comments  concerning the proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership trade
agreement, 25th January  2010, www.USTR.gov/tpp

(4) Chicago auto workers denounce UAW-Ford two-tier wage system

Chicago auto workers denounce UAW-Ford deal

By Jerry White

7 October 2011


At the Ford assembly plant in south Chicago, workers expressed disgust
with the contract signed by the United Auto Workers. In particular, they
denounced the pay freeze for long-time workers—who have not had a raise
in eight years—and expansion of the two-tier wage system that is
condemning young workers to a life of insecurity and poverty.

The factory, which currently employs 2,700 hourly workers, produces the
Lincoln MKS, Ford Taurus and Ford Explorer models on two shifts. With
the UAW clearing the way for the hiring of hundreds of more low-wage
workers, Ford has announced it will add a third shift and another 1,100

Nationally, the new contract sanctions the addition of 5,750 new
“entry-level jobs,” which presently pay between $14 and $15 an hour—half
the wages of workers hired before 2007. According to analysts, this will
help Ford limit increases in labor costs to a smaller margin than
General Motors achieved in its contract with the UAW. Wall Street hailed
that deal for providing the slimmest increase in four decades.

The Chicago plant employs about 750 workers, many in their late teens
and early 20s, who are stuck in the category of so-called Long-Term
Supplemental (LTS) employees. These workers not only receive the lower
wage rate, they also have no job security and have less paid time off.
They can be hired and fired at will over a span of several years without
accruing seniority or a higher wage. When they complain about their
pariah status, UAW officials invariably tell them they are lucky to have
a job.

“It’s slavery. We don’t have any say in the plant,” a young worker named
Frederick said. Another 18-year-old worker said, “For the workers here,
it’s like a dictatorship. I voted to strike, but the union has done
nothing. They’re just going to keep accepting concessions from the company.”

Nationwide, Ford employs 2,250 temporary workers and another 100
permanent tier-two workers. These numbers will be greatly increased
under the new contract, which UAW President Bob King boasts has
convinced Ford to relocate jobs from Mexico and China back to the US. By
offering up its members as cheap labor, the UAW is ensuring it will
collect millions more in dues income annually and boost the value of the
Ford shares controlled by the UAW executives.

In 2009, rank-and-file workers overturned the UAW-Ford contract
negotiated by King, which would have stripped them of the right to
strike and lifted all caps on the percentage of tier-two workers.
Responding to the threat that workers would reject the new sellout, King
tried to use the threat of mass layoffs to blackmail Ford’s 40,600
workers to support the deal, saying, “In this economic climate, people
ought to realize that things are extremely unstable, and to wait would
not be smart in terms of our membership.”

“There is lots of opposition to this contract,” one worker told the
WSWS. “It’s like a cycle, people are being forced to stand up again.
People are tired of this. They’re getting to the breaking point.”

Workers are livid over the fact that they have lost between $7,000 and
$30,000 in wages and benefits over the last five years, while Ford is
making record profits and paying its CEO Alan Mulally tens of millions
of dollars.

Kisha, a worker with 11 years, said, “Nothing came back to us in this
contract. We haven’t had a raise in years. That means we have to
subtract from our budgets at home and downsize.

“Ford benefits from this contract, not us. And Bob King and the UAW are
going to get more dues money, that’s for sure. It’s a slap in the face.
Ford is paying its chairman $4 million a month. God forbid we should
earn a decent standard of living on our $25 an hour wage. It’s shameful.”

Danny, a worker with 18 years, referred to the practice in the 1970s
when a worker was hired in at 90 percent of full pay and after three
months gained job security and full wages. “There is no end date for
these temporary workers,” he said. “They are living day to day and don’t
know if they will have a job or not. They can never reach full pay of
$19 for a tier-two worker.

“In the last round of layoffs in 2008 we went down to one shift here.
Now they are talking about adding a third shift. That will be a killer
for Ford—it’ll be pure profit—because it is going to be manned by temps
and workers who can never see the light at the end of the tunnel.”

Commenting on the situation facing workers in the US and around the
world, he said, “We have a two-class system here. In the past, at least
they threw you some peanuts and said you were in the ‘middle class.’ Now
every worker is being hit. Look how the teachers are getting stuck. They
keep talking about how important education is and then they screw the
people who are providing it. All the politicians, whether they are
Democrats or Republicans, are puppets of the rich.”

One 33-year-old auto worker, who didn’t want to be named, said: “All
this talk about our getting our holiday pay back, time off, the UAW has
done nothing for us. The foremen here get big bonuses, though. I think
we could be contracts away from having this plant closed. The work
conditions here aren’t great either. We have had plumbing and sewage

Mike, a worker with 17 years, said, “Who can live on $17 an hour and
provide a good, quality life for a family? Mulally is making $90
million—that’s more than all the CEOs combined at Toyota, Nissan and the
other companies. As for the UAW, they just want to add more dues to the
millions they are already getting.”

Ford was also given a huge tax break by the city of Chicago to expand
production, creating a further loss of revenue for the city, which is
already cutting and privatizing services. Announcing the addition of the
third shift, Democratic Mayor Rahm Emanuel, Obama’s former chief of
staff, said, “This is a victory for Ford, a victory for workers and a
victory for Chicago.”

“There is no reason to expand the two-tier wages when the company is
making billions,” said Robert, another worker at the plant. “This is
happening to the whole country—everybody is taking pay cuts. This is
nothing but a sellout by the UAW.”

“I’ve got four kids,” said another tier-two worker. “Making $15 or $16
an hour and with more out-of-pocket medical expenses, how can I afford
to take them to the doctor? Before I was laid off in 2008, we were
making full pay at $24 an hour. When they hired us back, they dropped us
to $15. Now they want to get rid of all the higher paying jobs and take
away our benefits.

“They said they had to give Mulally millions to keep the ‘best talent.’
They said the same thing about the bankers who screwed up the whole country.

“People fought in the old days for a decent standard of living. Now the
UAW is giving it all away.”

The Socialist Equality Party is calling on workers to form rank-and-file
committees, independently of and in opposition of the UAW, to defeat the
contract and develop an industrial and political fight to overturn the
two-tier wage system and restore all wage and benefit concessions. We
urge workers to download and distribute our statement and contact the SEP.

(5) Australia's new Federal Horticulture Award has one 10 min smoko a
day; State Award had 20 min (2x10 min)

MA000028 - Horticulture Award 2010


2.1 This award commences on 1 January 2010.

23. Breaks
23.1 Meal break

(a) A meal break of not less than 30 minutes and not more than one hour
will be allowed each day, to be taken not later than five hours after
commencing ordinary hours of work. Provided that where there is
agreement between the employer and an individual employee, the meal
break may be taken at a time agreed.

(b) All work performed on the instruction of the employer during a
recognised meal break will be paid for at 200% of the appropriate
minimum wage. Such payment will continue until the employee is released
for a meal break of not less than 30 minutes.

23.2 Rest break

Employees will be allowed a paid rest break of 10 minutes each morning.
Where agreement is reached between the employer and employee for an
additional rest break, such rest break will be unpaid and in addition to
the employee’s ordinary hours of work. ==

AN140126 – Fruit and Vegetable Growing Industry Award - Qld State 2002



Employees required to work for more than 5 hours continuously on any one
shift shall be allowed an unpaid meal break of 60 minutes:

Provided that by mutual agreement the meal break may be reduced to not
less than 30 minutes.


All employees shall receive a rest pause of 10 minutes' duration in the
employer's time in the first and second half of their daily work. Such
rest pauses shall be taken at such times so as not to interfere with
continuity of work where continuity is necessary.

It is agreed that rest pauses will not be eliminated, but where agreed
between an employer and majority of employees on site, and subject to
this local agreement being ratified by the branch secretary of the
Union, periods of work may be re-arranged so that there is less
disruption to certain work by moving the rest pauses.

(6) Warren Buffett's cure for the US Economy

From: John Bennett <eyelemics@gmail.com> Date: Mon, 17 Oct 2011 09:49:47

From: Celeinne Ysunza <<mailto:see.why@sbcglobal.net> see.why@sbcglobal.net>
Subject: Fwd: Here's What Warren Buffett Suggests to Cure the Economy!!!
Date: Monday, October 17, 2011, 4:27 PM

Subject: FW: Here's What Warren Buffett Suggests to Cure the Economy!!!

Begin forwarded message:

Let us all speak up!

Warren Buffett, in a recent interview with CNBC, offers one of the best
quotes about the debt ceiling:

"I could end the deficit in 5 minutes," he told CNBC. "You just pass a
law that says that anytime there is a deficit of more than 3% of GDP,
all sitting members of Congress are ineligible for re-election

The 26th amendment (granting the right to vote for 18 year-olds) took
only 3 months & 8 days to be ratified! Why? Simple! The people demanded it.
That was in 1971...before computers, e-mail, cell phones, etc.

Of the 27 amendments to the Constitution, seven (7) took 1 year or less
to become the law of the land...all because of public pressure.

Warren Buffet is asking each addressee to forward this email to a
minimum of twenty people on their address list; in turn ask each of
those to do likewise.

In three days, most people in The United States of America will have the
message. This is one idea that really should be passed around.

Congressional Reform Act of 2011

1. No Tenure / No Pension.
A Congressman collects a salary while in office and receives no pay when
they are out of office.

2. Congress (past, present &future) participates in Social Security.

All funds in the Congressional retirement fund move to the Social
Security system immediately. All future funds flow into the Social
Security system, and Congress participates with the American people. It
may not be used for any other purpose.

3. Congress can purchase their own retirement plan, just as all
Americans do.

4. Congress will no longer vote themselves a pay raise. Congressional
pay will rise by the lower of CPI or 3%.

5. Congress loses their current health care system and participates in
the same health care system as the American people.

6. Congress must equally abide by all laws they impose on the American

7. All contracts with past and present Congressmen are void effective
The American people did not make this contract with Congressmen.
Congressmen made all these contracts for themselves. Serving in Congress
is an honor, not a career. The Founding Fathers envisioned citizen
legislators, so ours should serve their term(s), then go home and back
to work.

If each person contacts a minimum of twenty people then it will only
take three days for most people (in the U.S.) to receive the message.
Maybe it is time.


If you agree with the above, pass it on. If not, just delete. You are
one of my 20+.. Please keep it going.

(7) Ron Paul would extend Bush tax-cuts for the rich

Ron Paul reveals plan to save $1 trillion

Published: 18 October, 2011, 00:30


With the United States only going deeper and deeper into debt, GOP
presidential hopeful and Texas Congressman Ron Paul says he can cut
spending by $1 trillion during his first year in the oval office,
according to a new economic outline.

Dubbed the “Restore America” plan, Rep. Paul formally introduced his
economic agenda this afternoon in Las Vegas, a day before the
congressman is scheduled to partake in the latest televised debate of
the Republican presidential candidates.

While Paul’s plan is slated to include several issues popular with his
GOP rivals, including abolishing the education and energy departments,
the candidate also says he will cut the president’s salary down to just
a fraction and trim the administrative cabinet down tremendously, as
well as end troop occupation overseas.

According to the executive summary of the Restore American plan, “Dr.
Paul is the only candidate with a plan to cut spending and truly balance
the budget,” and Ron Paul 2012 National Campaign Chairman Jesse Benton
adds "It's the only plan offered by a presidential candidate that
actually balances the budget and begins to pay down the debt.”
Additionally, Benton bills it as “the only plan being offered that tries
to reign in the Federal Reserve and get inflation under control."

"Ron Paul's plan is the only one that seriously addresses the economic
and budgetary problems our nation face” Benton says in a statement
regarding Restore America. “It cuts $1 trillion in one year, and slashes
regulations and taxes so our economy can grow and create jobs.”

One large slash will be to the president’s paycheck, which Paul wants to
cut from $400,000 annually to only $39,336, which he says is about on
pay with the median personal income of the average American worker.

Elsewhere, Paul aims to reduce the federal work force by 10 percent,
lower the corporate tax rate from 35 percent to 15 percent, and end all
taxes on personal savings and extend tax cuts created by the Bush

And foreign aid? Paul wants to cut it out completely.

Departmentally speaking, the Environmental Protection Agency would see a
cut in funding by 30 percent, and the Food and Drug Administration would
see its budget slashed by 40 percent. Traditionally, removing
government-imposed regulations is a main focal point of libertarianism,
a believe largely attacked to both Congressman Paul and his senator son,
Rand Paul.

Always an opponent of the Federal Reserve, Congressman Paul says that he
will also push for a full audit of the Fed. During the last televised
GOP debate, Rep. Paul attacked Republican candidate Herman Cain for his
reluctance to authorize an audit and brought up the former pizzaman’s
past affiliation with the central bank — Cain once had a leading
position with the Kansas City Fed.

(8) The Robin Hood Tax - a tax on speculative transactions (not on
everyday banking transactions)


How it works

The Robin Hood Tax (more formally known as a financial transaction tax)
is a tiny tax on financial speculation by investment banks, hedge funds
and other finance institutions that would raise billions to tackle
poverty and climate change, in Australia and overseas.

It can start as low as 0.005 per cent – and average 0.05 per cent. But
when levied on the billions of dollars moving round the global finance
system daily through transactions such as foreign exchange, derivatives
  and share deals, it could raise hundreds of billions of dollars annually.

That can provide for vital investment in much needed and underfunded
public services like health and education, resource efforts to conserve
our environment, aid the fight against global poverty and climate
change. This money can help shape the future of our world.

The tax would not be levied on everyday banking transactions conducted
by individuals.

Why now?

Because the time is right.

First, from 2007 to present the world is suffering the greatest
recession since World War I that is caused by a crash in the financial
system. There is global agreement that we need to regulate finance so it
cannot crash in the same way again, even if there are different views
about how to do this. But the finance sector can – and should – make a
proper tax contribution towards putting right the damage it caused and
making the world a better, fairer, more sustainable place.

Second, computerisation of the finance sector has made a tax like this
easy to implement. What’s more, it’s made it necessary – the very speed
of today’s financial systems is a direct contributor to the surge in
global trading. Nowadays, too much trading is done to make a quick
profit, and not to serve the real economy. This high frequency trading
has brought instability.

Finally, because sometimes an idea’s time has come. The time of the
Robin Hood Tax is now. Globally, it is gaining support daily and it’s
time for Australia to begin playing her part.

Who’s in?

German Chancellor Angela Merkel, French President Nicolas Sarkozy and
Former UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown have been promoting a tax on
financial transactions.

Plenty of business bigwigs are on board, including philanthropist George
Soros, US businessman extraordinaire Warren Buffet and renowned
economist Jeffrey Sachs. And there are hundreds of other economists,
along with philosophers, thinkers, writers and actors, who have backed
the idea, too.

This isn’t some crazy pipedream. It’s a simple and brilliant idea which
transcends party politics and which – with your support – can become a

How would it work?

Our key demand is there transaction tax should be extended to both the
international and national financial transactions which would raise
substantial amounts from the finance sector. As the tax would be imposed
at the point of trade this would specifically target on speculative and
short-term transactions. There are different approaches and routes to
achieving this – and clearly there would need to be detailed technical
work and international negotiation before practical implementation. But
the principle is both easy to understand and entirely practical.

Different kinds of transaction could be taxed at different rates. Many
have suggested a currency transaction tax rate of 0.005 per cent (5
cents for every $1,000 traded). This would also work for other
low-margin high-volume trades such as derivatives. Not all transaction
taxes need be introduced at the same time, and some rates and taxes
might be sensibly phased in.

We are confident an international transaction tax system could
eventually raise hundreds of billions of dollars. Of course predicting
the precise tax take from a tax change is impossible since imposing it
may change behaviour, and affect the collection of other taxes. Indeed,
suppressing short-term speculative transactions would be a welcome
by-product of a Robin Hood Tax.

The world’s economy is still extremely precarious and the timetable for
introducing the transactions to be covered and at what rate would need
to be carefully set. But various experts have produced estimates of the
tax take of a range of different approaches to introducing a transaction
tax, and all are in the hundreds of billions of dollars range. They
converge around a figure of US$400 billion – a substantial sum but still
only one thousandth of the world’s transactions.

What would the tax be used for?

The campaign is calling for half the tax raised to be used domestically
and half internationally – equally split between development and climate
change adjustment. Here are some illustrations of what one quarter of a
US$400 billion tax take could achieve for development:

- In one second this tax could provide 9,000 school children with a
pencil and exercise book
- In just over one minute it would raise enough money to build a six
classroom school for 250 pupils
- In one month it would save the lives of 4.5 million children by
providing essential health services
- In three months the tax would provide life saving treatment for 8.6
million people with HIV/AIDS

Domestically the proceeds of the tax could help schools, hospitals and
valuable national public services.

Want more information?

Follow the links on the left for more, or find a lot more detail in our
FAQ Robin Hood Tax or in the academic research in our bibliography.
Alternately, post a comment below.

(9) Brazil auto industry has 65 % local-content requirement; China has
close to 90%. Why is our industry unprotected?


Nissan-Renault to Build New Brazil Plant, Upgrade One

October 06, 2011, 3:10 PM EDT

By Jose Sergio Osse

(Company corrects Ghosn’s comment in the third paragarph of article
published Oct. 1.)

Oct. 1 (Bloomberg) -- Nissan Motor Co. and Renault SA plan to build a
second factory in Brazil and upgrade an existing one to increase market
share in the largest Latin American economy, Chief Executive Officer
Carlos Ghosn said.

The new plant is to be built in Resende, in Rio de Janeiro state, said
Ghosn today at a news conference in Brasilia after talks with President
Dilma Rousseff. The factory in Sao Jose dos Pinhais, in Parana state, is
to be upgraded. Ghosn said more details about both plants will be
released next week.

“Brazil is going to be Renault’s second-biggest market in the world by
the end of this year,” said Ghosn, who is Brazilian-born. “We want to be
able to go beyond our present 8 percent market share in Brazil.”

Car sales have been increasing more than 20 percent a year for the past
few years in Brazil, the fifth-biggest auto market in the world. To keep
its market from being flooded by cheaper foreign cars, Brazil on Sept.
15 raised its tax on autos with less than 65 percent of their content
produced in the country, Mercorsur or Mexico.

Ghosn said the 65 percent local-content requirement is not unusual, with
it being closer to 90 percent in China, and it’s no impediment for
investing in Brazil.

He said details about the amount to be invested, the capacity of the
factories and the number of new jobs to be created will be disclosed
Oct. 5 at the Sao Jose dos Pinhais plant.

--Editors: Jamie Butters, Bill Koenig

To contact the reporter on this story: Jose Sergio Osse in Sao Paulo at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Helder Marinho at

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