Lo and behold, job satisfaction sits at a 35-year high, per a Conference Board survey. At the end, this article finally mentions “higher pay” (it hasn’t been keeping up with inflation, but when does it ever?) as a possible reason for the higher satisfaction, though we also know that folks who weren’t working during the pandemic had time to take stock of their lives and decide they didn’t need all that toxic BS at their particular workplace. (Makes sense, also, that folks with hybrid remote/in-person work arrangements were happier than folks doing just one or the other; now we just need to stop bosses from saying that folks absolutely must commute to work because the economy will die if they don’t, when mostly they just want to spy on workers a little better.)
Minnesota becomes the fourth American state to make phone calls free for prisoners. Big telecom corporations charge prisoners an arm and a leg to make phone calls to their loved ones, because prisoners are literally a captive market, but prisoners who can stay in contact with family members tend not to go back to prison, though private prisons may feel differently about this fact than you or I. Objections range from free phone calls? When did prison become Club Med? (yes, folks have said this to me, sigh) to but you can stuff a burner phone into a dead cat and throw it over the prison wall (that came from the man who served as FCC Chair from 2017-2021), and all I can say to such people is: when does your anger ever bottom out?
Ho hum, big pipeline corporations let their pipes sit out in the sun for years, often without the proper crack-resistant coating, though 50-year-old federal regulations outlaw this. But perhaps, like me, you see the gnarled hand of stock prices über alles here like everywhere else. I mean, these corporations have more than enough money, but they have enslaved themselves to the fiction that if stock prices don’t shoot up every month, they’re doomed. Don’t feel sorry for them, because they have the power to escape, and I rather suspect they just don’t want to, because this particular kind of slavery makes executives very rich – and the rest of us very miserable.
Surprise, surprise, a federal Department of Labor review finds that Iowa’s child labor bill (which Gov. Reynolds hasn’t signed) violates federal law, which seems obvious enough that one might momentarily wonder if Republicans were just creating drama here, by passing a controversial bill they knew wouldn’t see the light of day anyway. I might think that, too, except I can’t believe there’s a vocal minority of regular folks clamoring for kids to work in sweatshops, like there’s a similar minority clamoring to make all abortions illegal. Remember that when they say no one wants to work, the truth is that no one wants to work for dung pellets, which would be every executive’s preferred method of paying workers.
Speaking of actual Republican dramas, Sen. Ted Cruz (E-TX) has launched a very serious Senate probe – into Bud Light’s brief partnership with transgender actress Dylan Mulvaney! And he goes out of his way to refer to Ms. Mulvaney as a “he,” which is very grown up! Is this what you do ahead of a potentially tough re-election campaign? I know people are more ambivalent about transgender folks than I’d like, but at some point these right-wing dramas have to alienate so much of the electorate that Republicans will have to notice. At any rate, I hope Ted Cruz loses his race to a dead shrub. No point to telling me he’s smart when he won’t use his smarts to do good works.
Finally, in the wake of its $787.5 million settlement with Dominion and with another sizable settlement with Smartmatic likely, Fox News has apparently gutted its entire investigative unit, and that’ll teach good Americans not to hold big media corporations accountable! Now, don’t be the one saying they had an investigative unit? because that would be very snarky. But the same Fox executives who trumpeted the Big Lie for the money and then lost a lot of money and now are taking out their mistakes on the rank and file probably think you don’t need to do “investigating” in order to do journalism; they’re wrong, of course, but their attitude is also the cable news norm now. Hence another reminder not to watch cable news, because it’s irredeemably evil.