News & Commentary

June 23, 2014

The ongoing labor negotiations at the Metropolitan Opera have “turned bitter,” reports the New York Times.  The Met, which ran a $2.8 million deficit last season on a budget of $327 million, is facing a number of financial challenges.  However, the Met’s recent proposal to its unionized employees “represented a devastating reduction in pay,” said Tino Gagliardi, the president of the musicians’ union.  The authors of the column recommend that “both sides should compromise on real cuts. For the unions, this means accepting changes in benefits and work rules. Management will have to cut salaries and expenses just as rigorously.”

The New York Times’ “You’re the Boss” column, a new feature that highlights the issues facing small businesses in America, features an article by Paul Downs about his “disturbing experience with employee reviews.”  Downs will be authoring a series of posts this week to “tell the story of how my desire to do a fair evaluation of my workers ended with a greatly disturbing result.”  Monday’s post details the employee feedback that Downs received from 2006 through 2013 that led to the decision to have regular employee reviews.

The New York Times highlights Adam Davidson, the author of the New York Times Magazine’s cover story about “boomerang kids,” or young adults who move back in with their parents after finishing their post-secondary education.  The Q & A article discusses student debt, unpaid internships, and the general state of the economy.  After researching his article, Davidson has witnessed “the short-term chaos and pain caused by the financial crisis, which has impacted young people especially hard. But also there are these longer-term fundamental shifts in our economy that are becoming more apparent.”

The L.A. Times reports that in California, “an ascendant class of Latino lawmakers is seeking to rewrite the books and discard the polarizing laws.”  Today marks the 20 years anniversary of Proposition 187 — the California initiative to withhold public services such as healthcare and education from those in the country illegally.  Sen. Kevin De León (D-Los Angeles), the incoming Senate leader, is pushing a bill to strip much of the language of Proposition 187 from statute. The bulk of the law was overturned by a federal court, but references to it remain in the state code.

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