News & Commentary

November 2, 2017

Democrats revealed a set of pro-labor policies in their “Better Deal” platform yesterday.  These policies include a ban on all state right-to-work laws, passing a federal law that would allow federal employees to engage in collective bargaining with the same rights as their private counterparts, and banning the permanent replacement of striking workers.  While the policies are unlikely to gain support in Congress, they may signal the party’s interest in making their support of unionizing more prominent.  The Washington Post reports.

Last week, the NAACP issued a travel advisory alleging discrimination by American Airlines.  Two weeks earlier, the ACLU, Muslim Advocates, and NAACP also called on eight of the nation’s largest airlines to require anti-bias training for customer service employees.  The Los Angeles Times reports.

108 companies, including IBM, Facebook, Twitter, and Uber joined in support of the lawsuits pending in California, Minnesota, Maryland, and Maine, challenging President Trump’s decision to end the DACA program.  The companies support the Attorney Generals’ argument that ending DACA would cause economic harm to the United States by reducing companies’ abilities to compete and attract individuals from around the world.  Specifically, Apple stated that it would no longer be able to benefit from the hard work, creativity, and intelligence of its 250 DACA employees.

Public enthusiasm for the study of fields like “STEM” may be motivated in part by the perceived availability of jobs.  But research shows that jobs in computer science have much greater demand than those in life sciences;  in the decade ending in 2024, 73 percent of STEM job growth will be in computer occupations, but only 3 percent will be in the physical sciences and 3 percent in the life sciences.  To address the shift, specialist start-ups have begun to train physicists and biologists in data science and artificial intelligence programming.  The New York Times reports.

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