From the monthly archives: November 2016

Ohio Republicans, at the urging of the Petland chain of stores and their lobbyists, are planning to pass a bill that would overturn local ordinances that regulate pet stores and the dog breeders they purchase from. The laws, in effect in communities including Toledo and Grove City, were passed to crack down on the sale of dogs from unethical commercial breeders running puppy mills – facilities where dogs are kept in inhumane and unsanitary conditions and often carry disease or genetic conditions.

Speaker Cliff Rosenberger regurgitates the lobbyists’ talking points explains:

“It’s important that we not look […]

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Last year, Republican State Representative Barbara Sears introduced a bill (HB394) aimed at making Ohio’s Unemployment Compensation Trust Fund solvent again after it took a beating during the recession.  The bill was an extreme, right wing, anti-worker wish list, written with the help of business groups and without input from labor

HB394 dramatically reduced the length of time a worker collects benefits while unemployed, eliminated bonus pay for workers with dependents, added mandatory drug testing for unemployed workers, all while leaving employers paying the same as they have been since 1995, only instituting a modest increase if a downturn drains the trust fund.

Hearings for HB394 […]

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As folks on the left lick their wounds and pick up the pieces from the dumbest election ever, they’re understandably looking for bright sides. And there are a few — some important local tax levies passed in Ohio, medical and recreational marijuana was legalized in six more states and the Democrats are rebuilding to become more progressive and reflective of working people’s needs. However, there’s another sweet treat hidden amongst the negatives of 2016, one that stands out more than the rest for us here at Plunderbund — by the end of 2018, John Kasich’s political career will be dead.


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Wells Fargo Bank is already feeling the wrath of consumers who are letting the lending giant know that the kind and scope of bogus, profit-driven consumer accounts bank employees were driven to pursue as part of their jobs is a big turn off.

New customer account openings fell 44 percent in October from a year earlier, a new report says, while account closures rose 3 percent from the previous year, the AP reported. Meanwhile, the bank saw a 50 percent drop in credit card applications with “customer loyalty” scores dropping to 52.3 percent, down more than 10 percent from […]

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OK, so nothing about the headline to this article is accurate or even relevant. I just wrote it to get the clicks. It’s meaningless. But apparently, that’s what passes for “news” these days, and the only things that matter anymore are clicks, likes, shares, retweets and attention-grabbing lies for headlines, truth be damned. What a chump I’ve been!

I did this totally stupid thing and went to journalism school. I studied the greats. I have, “The Journalist’s Moral Compass,” on my bookshelf. I’ve read it repeatedly and referenced it throughout my career. I used to have hours-long debates in coffee shops […]

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Fake. The very sound of the word can unnerve us. And we’re getting more accustomed to finding out the sheer enormity of countless fakes out there.

Well, perhaps not quite totally accustomed. A lot of us might have been fooled recently by something or other that was fake – while others might still not realize that they’ve been conned. A recent New York Times story, in fact, detailed how quickly one fake story traveled the day after the election, literally at warp speed.

The words fake and fast are inextricably linked in today’s world.

In the past few decades, […]

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Cutting unemployment benefits, creating new abortion restrictions, stopping cities from raising the minimum wage, and preventing cities from stopping puppy mills is all on the menu for Ohio’s Republican legislature this lame-duck season.

It’s a holiday grab bag of hurt from the party Ohioans just rewarded with an expansion of their power and control in the Buckeye State. That’s right, the Republicans expanded their already preposterous majorities by one seat in each chamber of the Ohio General Assembly.

But outgoing lawmakers are looking to get in their licks while the licking remains good, and the folks were kind […]

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Trump’s Badly Drained Swamp

On November 20, 2016 By

You may have noticed that in making good on his promise to drain the swamp, Donald Trump channeled some of the acrid run-off into his emerging cabinet. For example, his attorney general nominee, Jefferson Beauregard Sessions, is an Alabama Republican senator ( born in Selma, that land of horrific dreams), who has been blistered by civil rights groups for his record on immigration, gays, blacks, and whatever else fit into his bigoted vision of the American dream. He has famously accused the NAACP and ACLU of being “communist inspired” but later explained that it was ”probably not something I would […]

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Ohio Gov. John Kasich has enjoyed a challenge-free climate on his lackluster production of jobs from a state media largely afraid to take him on, risking to be cut off from what little access he gives them now. John Kasich doesn’t hold press conferences in his home state, instead he makes isolated appearances on Fox News, where he once worked and could conceivably do so again when he leaves office in two years, or selected national shows in need of sideshow politicos to fill air time.

After literally years of underperforming the national job creation average, while other states run […]

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The Ohio Department of Jobs and Family Services again delivered bad news for many Ohioans looking for good paying jobs. The loss of 2,800 jobs in October added to the state’s slowing job growth rate, which at 0.91 percent again underperformed the national job growth rate of 1.56 percent, this time by 42 percent.

Ohio’s employment growth under Gov. John Kasich has been below the USA national average for 46 of the last 47 months, according to analysis provided by Ohio’s premier data detective, George Zeller, an economic research analyst based in Cleveland.

The number of unemployed workers in […]

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In a news conference call with reporters Wednesday, Ohio Sen. Sherrod Brown outlined his priorities for U.S. trade policy under President-Elect Donald Trump’s administration. Sen. Brown, one of only two Democrats elected statewide, released a letter to President-Elect Trump outlining ways the new White House administration can follow through on campaign promises to make U.S. trade policy work for Ohioans and protect American jobs.

Sen. Brown will defend his seat in two years, but in the minority again following elections eight days ago, he wants to find common ground with Trump’s administration when it comes to keeping and bringing back […]

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