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This diary was intended as just a comment in the Saturday hate mail-a-palooza, but it kept getting longer and longer, so I thought I would offer it as a diary.

Why are both heads of household working 11 hours a day? Why are we juggling our schedule's to make sure someone is there to take care of our kids? I mean the answer to that is pretty easy, it is because we love our kids. But - it is getting harder.

Are we losing ground?

Not that very long ago it was different....

It seems somehow quaint in the 21st century that employers would actually pay you for lunch. 9 to 5 is just 8 hours. You used to get paid for lunch. Go figure.

Just how much ground has the American worker lost?

The 1950's America is what the conservatives say they want to go back to. An America where a single bread winner worked 40 hour weeks and unions were strong.

The 1956 Republican paltform:

In addition, the Eisenhower Administration has enforced more vigorously and effectively than ever before, the laws which protect the working standards of our people.

Workers have benefited by the progress which has been made in carrying out the programs and principles set forth in the 1952 Republican platform. All workers have gained and unions have grown in strength and responsibility, and have increased their membership by 2 millions.

Furthermore, the process of free collective bargaining has been strengthened by the insistence of this Administration that labor and management settle their differences at the bargaining table without the intervention of the Government. This policy has brought to our country an unprecedented period of labor-management peace and understanding.

[Edited to add a link to the 1956 Republican Platform.]

We applaud the effective, unhindered, collective bargaining which brought an early end to the 1956 steel strike, in contrast to the six months' upheaval, Presidential seizure of the steel industry and ultimate Supreme Court intervention under the last Democrat Administration.

The Eisenhower Administration will continue to fight for dynamic and progressive programs which, among other things, will:

Stimulate improved job safety of our workers, through assistance to the States, employees and employers;

Continue and further perfect its programs of assistance to the millions of workers with special employment problems, such as older workers, handicapped workers, members of minority groups, and migratory workers;

Strengthen and improve the Federal-State Employment Service and improve the effectiveness of the unemployment insurance system;

Protect by law, the assets of employee welfare and benefit plans so that workers who are the beneficiaries can be assured of their rightful benefits;

Assure equal pay for equal work regardless of Sex

We are losing ground?

I would gladly go back to a 1950's America with 'assured equal pay' for all Americans that the Republicans promised in 1956.

As Jefferson said in the Deceleration of Independence, "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. --That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed"

The Republicans lost the election. The consent of the governed has been heard.

I started out with a video, so I will end with one, and I will end my patriotic screed.

(And it is a patriotic screed - in the purist intent of our Founding Fathers. "All Men?" I mean what could have the Founding Fathers possibly meant by that? Maybe I am going out on a limb here, but to me, it means ALL the the people. If we are to claim American exceptionalism, that is what it has to be based on.)

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (12+ / 0-)

    It is possible to read the history of this country as one long struggle to extend the liberties established in our Constitution to everyone in America. - Molly Ivins

    by se portland on Sat Nov 17, 2012 at 01:33:13 PM PST

  •  I worked a 7-hour day, as a traffic engineer... (8+ / 0-)

    ...working for the City of Chicago, for a total of 35 hours per week. Any overtime would start out as straight time, and as comp time for the next 5 hours. After that, we could accrue 1 1/2 hours of comp time for every hour worked, or 2 hours if we were working on a weekend or holiday. We might get paid if money was available, from 40 hours on up, but usually we took comp time. And the bosses wouldn't have us work overtime, because we were so understaffed, and we would use that comp time.

    And since I retired in 2010, it's gotten worse.

    There are 2,904 signalized intersections in Chicago, and you need at least 6 people to handle the traffic engineering, field checks, and public information duties properly. We had 4 people before I retired, and there are three now. My position was not only never filled, they eliminated it early in 2012. And next year, they lose another traffic engineer.

    Your tax dollars at "work"!

    Float like a manhole cover, sting like a sash weight! Clean Coal Is A Clinker!

    by JeffW on Sat Nov 17, 2012 at 01:55:35 PM PST

  •  Hi, OT (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    se portland, blueoregon

    which Portland are you in?

    we are having a Portland Oregon meet up if you are availble and in the right state! ;D

    "the Devil made me buy this dress!" Flip Wilson as Geraldine Jones

    by BlueJessamine on Sat Nov 17, 2012 at 01:58:47 PM PST

  •  SE Portland, good reading. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    se portland, blueoregon, phonegery

    Do you have a link to that 1956 Republican platform? Thanks!

    I was a peripheral visionary. I could see the future, but only way off to the side. ~ Steven Wright

    by Bugsby on Sat Nov 17, 2012 at 02:00:46 PM PST

  •  The Republican 9 to 5 (4+ / 0-)

    is 9 AM to 5 AM (20 hours) for a daily wage of $0.30.

  •  Yes, but, remember, (7+ / 0-)

    As a single woman, I would've had to have a male relative co-sign any large purchase I made (House, car)
    that means, I would've had to have my nephew or my BIL come up from California when i bought my house in Salem, even though I had the money.
    I'm so glad we will never go back to that.

    "Let us never forget that doing the impossible is the history of this nation....It's how we are as Americans...It's how this country was built"- Michelle Obama

    by blueoregon on Sat Nov 17, 2012 at 02:27:00 PM PST

    •  When my father died in the 70's (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      phonegery, JeffW, radarlady

      my Mother discovered that Mrs. SE Portland Sr. was a non-person and had no credit.

      She was a non-person outside of her deceased husband.

      I was young.

      I did not mean to suggest that we have not made progress, and that the 50's were better than today.  But, like the frog in the warming water that allows itself to be boiled, we have to remain vigilant.

      When I wrote this, I knew that the 1950's were not  Camelot. I tried to modify it with my 'assured equal pay.' What I wrote was an alternative history to be sure, but it was an age when labor was doing better than today. An age when the Republican Party still valued the middle class.

      I am remiss in not reminded readers of 'separate but equal' and the open suppression of women''s rights.

      I should have expound on this. Me and my Mother suffered in the 70's  because she was a non-person and had to start her live over after my father's death.

      It is possible to read the history of this country as one long struggle to extend the liberties established in our Constitution to everyone in America. - Molly Ivins

      by se portland on Sat Nov 17, 2012 at 03:05:09 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

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