“I feel glad it’s come to everybody’s attention; people are supposed to get paid when they work.”

This is where it started, 2007:

The United States Supreme Court ruled yesterday against a home care aide from Queens and upheld federal regulations that exempt most home care workers from minimum-wage and overtime protections.
Senator Edward M. Kennedy, the Massachusetts Democrat who is chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee, said he would seek to amend the Fair Labor Standards Act to ensure that home aides were protected. He said the court decision highlighted “a significant gap in the protections of our laws,” and added that he would work with his colleagues “on a fair solution that treats these hardworking caregivers with the dignity and respect they deserve”.

We first looked at this fight in 2011.

Today:

The Obama administration announced on Tuesday that it was extending minimum wage and overtime protections to the nation’s nearly two million home care workers.
Advocates for low-wage workers have pushed for this change, asserting that home care workers, who care for elderly and disabled Americans, were wrongly classified into the same “companionship services” category as baby sitters — a group that is exempt from minimum wage and overtime coverage. Under the new rule, home care aides, unlike baby sitters, would be protected under the Fair Labor Standards Act, the nation’s main wage and hour law.
In an unusual move, the administration said the new regulation would not take effect until Jan. 1, 2015, even though regulations often take effect 60 days after being issued. The delay until 2015 is to give families that use these attendants, as well as state Medicaid programs, time to prepare for the new rule.
“We think the workers providing this critical work should be receiving the same basic protection and coverage as the vast majority of American workers,” said Laura Fortman, deputy administrator of the Labor Department’s Wage and Hour Division.

The White House said 92 percent of these workers were women

100 replies
  1. 1
    hildebrand says:

    Worse than Bush!

  2. 2
    Baud says:

    Sold us out!

  3. 3
    Betty Cracker says:

    Well done, President Obama and team!

  4. 4

    @Baud: How do you know Romney wouldn’t have done the same thing, huh? huh?

  5. 5
    WereBear says:

    Like I’ve been saying… our first feminist President.

  6. 6
    shelly says:

    As someone who’s been responsible for several elderly relatives; these people can’t be paid enough!

  7. 7
    Jeremy says:

    But Obama is not acting like a real leader and he doesn’t care about style. And democrats and republicans in the beltway are questioning his ability. Jill Lawrence and Ruth Marcus are concerned.

  8. 8
    shelly says:

    How do you know Romney wouldn’t have done the same thing, huh? huh?

    Sure! The guy couldn”t give a straight answer when a reporter asked if he supported equal pay.

  9. 9
    Citizen Alan says:

    Forget Romney, I’m sure Putin would have done the same thing too!

  10. 10
  11. 11
    BGinCHI says:

    These women do more work in a week than Congress will do all year.

    This is one of those jobs all 18-year-olds should have to do for at least a summer.

  12. 12
    MikeJ says:

    Putin will get this stopped.

  13. 13
    JPL says:

    Benghazi !

  14. 14
    different-church-lady says:

    Bah — the NSA might accidentally look at one of your e-mails, he said he wanted to bomb Syria, and he hasn’t excutively signed pot into legalization, so it doesn’t count.

    /poe’s law

  15. 15
    BGinCHI says:

    @MikeJ: Is it wrong that whenever I read of hear “Putin” I think of cheese/gravy/french fries at 4AM in a greasy dive in Montreal?

  16. 16
    MikeJ says:

    @different-church-lady: And how do we even know if there are any home health care providers? It’s probably a false flag operation.

  17. 17
    different-church-lady says:

    @BGinCHI:

    I think of cheese/gravy/french fries at 4AM in a greasy dive in Montreal?

    You say that like it’s a bad thing.

  18. 18
    ruemara says:

    I’m sure he was forced to do it by bloggers.

  19. 19
    Just Some Fuckhead, Thought Leader says:

    Looks like we’re going to have to start using jail inmates as elderly companions to keep our profit margins where they should be.

  20. 20
    BGinCHI says:

    @different-church-lady: I know. That’s the problem. I don’t want that Russian shitheel to spoil my gustatory memories.

  21. 21
    piratedan says:

    where is the bipartisanship? surely he could have found some votes amongst those that have already voted down school lunch programs and refuse to cover first responders medical expenses from 9/11!

  22. 22
    Anne Laurie says:

    You forgot Chappaquidick! ! !

    Seriously, well done President Obama (and props to my late Senator Teddy).

  23. 23
    different-church-lady says:

    @Just Some Fuckhead, Thought Leader:

    wait a minute…

    Looks like we’re going to have to start using jail inmates as elderly companions to keep our profit margins where they should be.

    {{{ZOT!!!}}}

    ELDER-CARE PRISONS!

  24. 24
    BGinCHI says:

    @different-church-lady: Instead of a high fence you just keep them in with cardboard cut-outs of brown teenagers.

  25. 25
    Kay says:

    @piratedan:

    There’s probably Youtube video of Ted Kennedy ranting himself hoarse beginning in 2003 or something. The original litigant died, then Kennedy died.

  26. 26
    Baud says:

    @SatanicPanic:

    How do you know Romney wouldn’t have done the same thing, huh? huh?

    This Romney?

    when I was back in my private equity days, we went to China to buy a factory there, employed about 20,000 people, and they were almost all young women between the ages of about 18 and 22 or 23. They were saving for potentially becoming married, and they worked in these huge factories, they made various small appliances, and as we were walking through this facility, seeing them work, the number of hours they worked per day, the pittance they earned, living in dormitories with little bathrooms at the end with maybe ten rooms. And the rooms, they had 12 girls per room, three bunk beds on top of each other. You’ve seen them.
    ……
    Romney: And around this factory was a fence, a huge fence with barbed wire, and guard towers. And we said, “Gosh, I can’t believe that you, you know, you keep these girls in.” They said, “No, no, no—this is to keep other people from coming in. Because people want so badly to come work in this factory that we have to keep them out, or they’ll just come in here and start working and try and get compensated. So, we—this is to keep people out.” And they said, “Actually, Chinese New Year, is the girls go home, sometimes they decide they’ve saved enough money and they don’t come back to the factory.” And he said, “And so on the weekend after Chinese New Year, there’ll be a line of people hundreds long outside the factory, hoping that some girls haven’t come back and they can come to the factory. And so, as we were experiencing this for the first time, for me to see a factory like this in China some years ago, the Bain partner I was with turned to me and said, “You know, 95 percent of life is settled if you’re born in America.” This is an amazing land

  27. 27
    different-church-lady says:

    @Baud: Let nobody say the guy didn’t have a vision for America’s future.

  28. 28
    shelly says:

    But it doesn’t go into effect till Jan. 2015? Oy.

  29. 29
    gogol's wife says:

    @BGinCHI:

    OT — I wanted to tell you that that story about the two guys who got into a fight about Immanuel Kant while waiting in line for beer in Rostov-on-the-Don has generated some hilarious parodies on the Russian internet, but they’re in Russian and untranslatable.

  30. 30
    Baud says:

    @different-church-lady:

    In all honesty, there’s a part of me that would like to see what would have happened if Romney had won.

  31. 31
    BGinCHI says:

    @gogol’s wife: I can’t stop thinking about how funny that was. Forwarded to a bunch of my old philosophy friends who really got a kick out of it. Idealists shooting blanks, etc. What a world.

  32. 32
    Sly says:

    @Baud:
    America would have gone completely to shit and Jill Stein would be unanimously elected President in 2016. #heightenthecontradictions

  33. 33
    e.a.f. says:

    The law has passed. Workers should not have to wait another yr, plus to be covered by this law. The States will adjust, as will everyone else. There is no need for the care givers to have to live in poverty one minute longer than they have been.

    When people are not covered by federal regulations they earn less and work harder than most. They then require food stamps and other federal assistance. It simply becomes a case of employers receiving subsidy from the federal government. Its the workers who deserve the assistance.

  34. 34
    gogol's wife says:

    @BGinCHI:

    Someone has posted a supposed police transcript of their conversation, in obscene Russian street slang, as they argue over the best translation of the Ding an sich.

    I don’t know if you saw this yesterday, so I’ll repost my translation of the news account I saw:

    According to the investigation that has begun, on the Day of the City holiday, the male victim was returning home late at night and decided to buy beer. He stopped at a small kiosk on Kazakh Street. While in line the victim got into conversation with a young man on a subject that was strange for such a situation. “They began to argue about the work and merits of Immanuel Kant,” the police learned. “A violent argument turned into fisticuffs.”

    Trying to prove that he was a great fan of the famous wise man, the instigator of the fight got out of his pocket a trauma pistol and shot his opponent several times.

    The suspect disappeared from the scene of the incident but was soon caught by employees of Police Department No. 6 in the First of May district of Rostov-on-the-Don.

  35. 35
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    Thanx Kay, more bad news. Now my dividends check from Sunrise Living is going to be $2.52 less than it was last year. Thanx.

    Thanx a lot.

    ONE LESS LATTE PER YEAR!!!!!

  36. 36
    Amir Khalid says:

    @BGinCHI:
    It so happens that the French transliteration of his name is “Poutine”.

  37. 37
    BGinCHI says:

    @gogol’s wife: I can only assume that Jonathan Safran Foer is writing a novel about this as we speak.

  38. 38
    Joe Buck says:

    Why does the Obama administration keep building in very long delays whenever they do something decent? It just gives the other side years to try to undermine them, and to come back next year and ask for a still longer delay. Better to take this action than to do nothing, and I could see an argument against 60 days, but why do all these folks need to continue on slaving away with no overtime and sub-minimum wage pay for another 16 months?

  39. 39
    Kay says:

    @Baud:

    Never. Ever:

    Enactment of the regulations would represent a major victory for unions that have fought for decades to win higher pay for direct-care aides.

    No victories for unions!

  40. 40
    srv says:

    Now there will be means testing for Death Panels.

  41. 41
    BGinCHI says:

    @Amir Khalid: Ah, life imitates art.

  42. 42
    Baud says:

    @Kay:

    No victories for unions!

    Fixed for accuracy.

  43. 43
    Ash Can says:

    @Baud:

    there’s a part of me that would like to see what would have happened if Romney had won.

    ::folds up sports section and starts whaling on Baud with it::

  44. 44
    Tommy says:

    @Baud: My mom and dad are hard core Republicans. They never forced their views down my throat, but they taught me as a kid that unions rock. I mean they are awesome. Unions. unions, more unions. You never fuck with a union. How things have changed.

  45. 45
    Ash Can says:

    @Joe Buck: I don’t know for sure, but I’d bet the ranch that the Obama admin wanted this to go into effect yesterday, but the delay was built into the law by the Congressfolks drafting the bill in order to get the damned thing passed by the other Congressional assholes, who weren’t sure they wanted it to go into effect at all.

  46. 46
    Baud says:

    @Ash Can:

    I said part of me. Like you don’t have a dark side.

  47. 47
    srv says:

    Col. Bacevich takes on Always Wrong Brooks.

  48. 48
    Kay says:

    @Baud:

    All the energy in labor is with women, low wage workers and minorities. Which maybe is as it should be, like a full circle.

    I see service workers now, I think, “oh, would you mind saving the country, too, in addition to your other duties?”

  49. 49
    Baud says:

    @Ash Can:
    This is a regulation. Congress wasn’t involved. The delay was likely to address concerns about compliance. My impression is that a lot of these workers aren’t employees of big companies that can easily adjust to new requirements.

  50. 50
    Keith G says:

    Why does the Obama administration keep building in very long delays whenever they do something decent?

    Do y’all read links?

    In an unusual move, the administration said the new regulation would not take effect until Jan. 1, 2015, even though regulations often take effect 60 days after being issued. The delay until 2015 is to give families that use these attendants, as well as state Medicaid programs, time to prepare.

    Industry experts say most of these workers are already paid at least the minimum wage, but many do not receive a time-and-a-half overtime premium when they work more than 40 hours a week. About 20 states exclude home care workers from their wage and hour laws.

  51. 51
    Litlebritdifrnt says:

    There is a scandal brewing here locally where a bunch of seniors invested in a condo in what was supposed to be a care facility, they gave the facility basically an open ended line of credit for their care in the form of an Equity line in their condo. The people who were running the place raked in millions and now have told all their residents that they are broke and they all have to move out at the end of the month. These are all elderly people with literally no where else to go.

  52. 52
    Baud says:

    @Keith G:

    I rarely get out of the boat. It’s scary out there.

  53. 53
    AxelFoley says:

    Ok, since no one else will say it, I will–DROOONNNNEZ

  54. 54
    burnspbesq says:

    @SatanicPanic:

    How do you know Romney wouldn’t have done the same thing, huh? huh?

    Even on Tuesday, you have to do better than that to get a chuckle out of people.

  55. 55
    Baud says:

    @AxelFoley:

    We will NOT tolerate that sort of pre-Snowden thinking on this blog, young man.

  56. 56
    Ash Can says:

    @Baud: Yeah, but my dark side wonders what would happen if Rush Limbaugh swallowed his cigar butt on air, or if Wayne LaPierre shot his dick off in a “gun-cleaning” accident, or if Fox “News” were shut down as part of a racketeering investigation of Roger Ailes — as opposed to imagining scenarios of this beleaguered nation getting pushed off a cliff.

  57. 57
    Ash Can says:

    @Baud: Also too, thanks for the info.

  58. 58
    Baud says:

    @Tommy:

    They sure don’t sound like hard-core Republicans.

    @Kay:

    Glad to hear competent people are in finally in charge.

  59. 59
    Kay says:

    @Baud:

    A lot of them are actually big companies. That’s the difference that the SCOTUS (liberal members) wanted to recognize, but the plain language of the rule made it difficult. I actually think there’s two reasons for the delay. One is Medicaid (a lot of the companies bill Medicaid) and the other is the health care law, which has some provisions that make it easier for people to stay out of nursing homes but get sufficient care at home, paid for by Medicaid. I think they want to wrap all this together.
    Nursing homes are a huge business, so there will be push-back to expanding in-home care for people who don’t want to leave their home, but need a lot of care. In Ohio, the big nursing home companies are all GOP donors.

  60. 60
    burnspbesq says:

    @Joe Buck:

    Software and systems. This is not Gumdrop Mountain, where Magic Software and Systems Fairies do a year’s worth of updating and rewriting in 17 minutes and 11 seconds, never make mistakes, and bake delicious mocha brownies while they’re coding.

  61. 61
    Baud says:

    @Kay: @burnspbesq:

    Good points both.

  62. 62
    Tommy says:

    @Litlebritdifrnt: Sorry to hear. My little rural town doesn’t have any elected folks with a full time job. A few years ago we hired a City Manger. He manages things. He was around when we went from 5,500 to 8,700 folks. Got funding for a $60M new highschool (the best of the best in my area). $20M new primary school. We voted to raise our taxes to build more parks in our town.

    The current mayor tried to fire him, a political thing.

    We voted in the last election to be able to recall our mayor over this issue. We voted 87% for this bill. Our City Manger is now here.

  63. 63
    MikeJ says:

    @burnspbesq:

    and bake delicious mocha brownies while they’re coding.

    I have tried this and I get so involved with some problem I only remember the brownies when the house is full of smoke.

  64. 64
    PopeRatzo says:

    @Joe Buck:

    Why does the Obama administration keep building in very long delays whenever they do something decent?

    Like the employer mandate, it has absolutely nothing to do with an election in November of 2014.

    Plus, as the linked story says, families have to prepare for the next 16 months to pay the lady who’s taking care of grampa time and a half if she works more hours after she’s already put in a full day’s work. No need to have any stories about families who are just getting by having to suddenly come up with additional money (most home care workers put in more than 8-hour shifts) popping up just before a big congressional election in which Obamacare is already going to be big issue.

    It’s smart to wait the 16 months. I wish the President would do the same by delaying Obamacare for union shops. It makes me very uncomfortable to have unions lining up against Obamacare. We really don’t want to start choosing sides between unions and Democrats.

  65. 65
    Litlebritdifrnt says:

    @PopeRatzo:

    This is going to be hellacious to regulate. I know a lot of families who pay those caregivers cash, and really don’t keep any type of logs showing who was working when. We are in litigation right now in just such a case where one of the siblings is suing the other sibling for the amount of money that he spent on his mother’s care in her last days. He really didn’t think that it was a problem paying the girls who were caring for his mother 24/7 cash and not getting them to sign for it when he paid them. It has turned out to be a huge headache.

  66. 66
    Tommy says:

    @Baud: They are sane Republicans. But Republicans. My dad was over the other day. He is an atheist (like myself). We agree on much of the world. I can assure you he is not a liberal. Heck I tell him all the time he should be a liberal, we think what he thinks to a large extent, but he doesn’t listen to me.

  67. 67
    SarahT says:

    @BGinCHI: oh hell yeah – it is THE WORST. In college I took home care and housecleaning jobs. Hands down caring for the elderly and infirm is the hardest work I have ever done. Still have to do plenty of it with my Mom, but to be responsible for the care of someone else’s elderly parent is horrible. Almost worse than the miserable work and low pay was the anger I felt that these old people were all but ignored by the their (often quite well-to-do) families. Even now, thinking about how lonely those people were makes me want to scream and /or cry.

  68. 68
    rikyrah says:

    @Litlebritdifrnt:

    do you have a link to the story?

  69. 69
    WereBear says:

    @Baud: In all honesty, there’s a part of me that would like to see what would have happened if Romney had won.

    I suggest you dress in your worst set of clothes, put the living in a shelter, burn down the house, and beg for your next meal at a Mormon church.

  70. 70
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @BGinCHI: I think I noted here (but am not 100% sure if I did) many months ago that French-language newspapers in Canada actually do spell the Russian leader’s name “Poutine.” Made me laugh then, makes me laugh now.

  71. 71
    Tommy says:

    @SarahT: My grandfather passed away at 97. He was a rock star, just blind and deaf at that age. Mentally he was there, but needed help. My mom was there for him everyday. My dad ditto.. I was when I could be.

    My grandfathers kids literally lived around the corner from him. They never helped. I recall his funeral they were all cyring, I as the dick kid, noted that they should have cared more when it was, you knew, alive.

  72. 72
    Emma says:

    @e.a.f.: First thought: The salary increases will be passed on to the families. If you tell someone that in two months they will have to come up with a further $300/400 a month to keep grandma at home, it’s going to create all sorts of hardships. So letting people figure out what they are going to have to do is a good thing.

  73. 73
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @shelly:

    But it doesn’t go into effect till Jan. 2015? Oy.

    I know. That was was my immediate reaction, too. But it’s a helluvalot better than it has been for all these years of nothing.

  74. 74
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @Amir Khalid:
    @SiubhanDuinne:

    I should have known….

  75. 75
    Litlebritdifrnt says:

    @rikyrah:

    Been looking but can’t find one right now because I cannot for the life of me remember the name of the condo complex, I know there was a letter to the editor a couple of weeks ago, and it is driving me mad trying to find it on the local newspapers web site.

    Okay found it

    http://www.carolinacoastonline.....f887a.html

  76. 76
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @Litlebritdifrnt:

    There is a scandal brewing here locally where a bunch of seniors invested in a condo in what was supposed to be a care facility, they gave the facility basically an open ended line of credit for their care in the form of an Equity line in their condo. The people who were running the place raked in millions and now have told all their residents that they are broke and they all have to move out at the end of the month. These are all elderly people with literally no where else to go.

    North Carolina, right? No worries, McCrory and Pope will make sure the elderly folk are taken care of. Compassionately.

    /throwing up in my mouth a little, just typing that snark

  77. 77
    MikeJ says:

    @SiubhanDuinne:

    I think I noted here (but am not 100% sure if I did) many months ago that French-language newspapers in Canada actually do spell the Russian leader’s name “Poutine.”

    Wasn’t it Rick Mercer who asked Bush about his view of PM Poutine?

  78. 78
    Kay says:

    @SiubhanDuinne:

    Yeah, it’s still huge because it’s growing so fast:

    The federal government says six million of the 40 million Americans older than 65 need some form of daily assistance to live outside a nursing home. Federal officials estimate that the number will double to 12 million by 2030.

    15 states already do this and they haven’t seen any huge changes in access or cost.

    When they brought the lawsuit one of their big objections was the lack of respect and dignity. They want this to be categorized as “real” work.

    I can’t help but notice that the work that women do is always where we have we have these battles over “real” versus, I don’t know, “fake” work :)

    Why are women drawn to these easy-peasy fake jobs, do ya think?

  79. 79
    Gozer says:

    @BGinCHI:

    OT I know, but the absolute best poutine I’ve ever had has been at Duckfat in Portland, ME. A large duckfat poutine, duck confit panini, and a creme anglaise milkshake makes you happy for the day.

  80. 80
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @MikeJ: Yup :-)

  81. 81
    PurpleGirl says:

    @Kay:

    Why are women drawn to these easy-peasy fake jobs, do ya think?

    Because these “easy-peasy fake” jobs are the jobs that a uneducated or inadequately educated woman can get. Also, undocumented women. Women who are easily exploitable.

  82. 82
    ThresherK says:

    @Kay: I’d like to introduce the word “calling” here. It refers to certain jobs which people are supposed to want to do for, basically, no money.

    God help you if what you do is ever honored as a “calling” by a politician or a pundit.

    Teaching kids? A “calling”. Historically done by women.
    Nursing? A “calling”. Also historically done by women.

    (And these contrast with being a college professor and being a doctor.)

    I expect the “home healthcare is like glorified babysitting” meme to start on the right any minute now.

  83. 83
    Kay says:

    @PurpleGirl:

    The longer I look at this stuff the more I think there’s been a general push to devalue work. The next time conservatives are whining about food stamps, they should look at their role in that, over the last 30 years.

    I’ll never forget when Christie did that sneering thing they do where he compared teachers to babysitters. It’s disrespectful to both groups. I mean, really, WTF? We all leave our children with “babysitters”. They’re somehow worthless slugs? It just drives me crazy. On the one hand, they’re always yammering about a work ethic. In the next breath they’re trashing some category of worker.

  84. 84
    CaseyL says:

    Whoops – wrong thread. Never mind. Carry on.

  85. 85
    Kay says:

    @ThresherK:

    I agree 100%. I read a ton on ed “reform” and it just jumps right out at me.

    “Hmm. This is mostly a field where women work? No wonder everyone’s an expert!”

    I’ve been seeing it pop up here and there, that argument, and I think it’s about damn time it was raised. Clear as day to me.

  86. 86
    WereBear says:

    @Kay: The longer I look at this stuff the more I think there’s been a general push to devalue work.

    The transition to the service economy. Now, we are all “servants.”

  87. 87

    @Kay:

    The longer I look at this stuff the more I think there’s been a general push to devalue work.

    Except, of course, for managerial work. If you boss other people around, you’re doing real work. All the people who are doing what you tell them are just a bunch of slackers who couldn’t accomplish anything without your brilliant direction.

  88. 88
    Chris says:

    @Kay:

    The longer I look at this stuff the more I think there’s been a general push to devalue work.

    There has. According to the conservative worldview, the only two possible callings that make you a worthwhile human being are owning a business and wearing a uniform. Everything else is just a mass of useless, disposable, ungrateful peons. (And as for the people wearing the uniform, most of the praise and support is just rhetorical anyway).

  89. 89
    WereBear says:

    @Chris: Conservatives seem to live for “kiss up/kick down.”

    Everything is ranked and hierarchical. No one is equal.

  90. 90

    @Chris:

    According to the conservative worldview, the only two possible callings that make you a worthwhile human being are owning a business and wearing a uniform.

    And wearing a uniform has been degraded a lot, too. Conservatives love to praise what the people in uniforms do, but when it actually comes time for tangible rewards, they are unwilling to open their wallets.

  91. 91
    Kay says:

    @Roger Moore:

    I feel like people could shift it by at least acknowledging that managers (and specifically, CEO’s, for national media) cannot possibly be working all alone.

    Every time they do one of those genius CEO fawn-fests, there should be someone who says “you made all this money by yourself, then?”

    I really think that was one essential role “labor” played, where they were constantly saying “hey! look over here! we exist! we contribute!”

  92. 92
    Chris says:

    @Roger Moore:

    Yep. Like I said – mostly rhetorical. But sometimes it does come with benefits, as when police unions are exempted from crackdowns by the local Republican governor.

    (The really ugly thing is the reason they praise the uniforms in a way they don’t do for the rest of the peasants – they’re the people they count to shoot, beat or jail the other peasants if they get out of hand. So, the only two people worthy of praise in society are the bosses, and their enforcers).

  93. 93

    @Kay:

    Every time they do one of those genius CEO fawn-fests, there should be someone who says “you made all this money by yourself, then?”

    And their answer would be that yes, they did. Suggesting that the system of rewards is somehow unfair and that more of the money should have gone to ordinary workers is completely out of the question. The market chose to reward them with all that money rather than their employees, and that’s all the proof they need that they created all the value.

  94. 94
    Linnaeus says:

    @ThresherK:

    The “psychic wage” is a very insidious concept, as it is employed in discourse about ed “reform”, etc.

  95. 95
    sparrow says:

    @Chris: If you take a look at the Mayan stellae, this is actually depicted. The leaders are huge and beautiful, literally standing on a small army of medium-sized soldiers. Those guys in turn are standing on a multitude of tiny farmers with bent backs. We’re the farmers.

  96. 96
    different-church-lady says:

    @Baud:

    there’s a part of me that would like to see what would have happened if Romney had won.

    That part would be your asshole, yes?

  97. 97
    mai naem says:

    I’ve never understood why elderly people don’t get together on their own, in small groups and buy very small apartment complexes(think four-eight plexes) and hire a live in caregiver couple who lives in one of the apartments who takes care of everybody. It would be a hell lot cheaper than a nursing/assisted living place and you would get much better care. Yes, you would have to work out the legalities, basic civic rules and logistics but at least you have better control of your situation.

  98. 98
    Gretchen says:

    @mai neem: The problem is that elderly people’s needs escalate unpredictably. My mom went to an assisted living that provided meals, cleaning and activities, but when she couldn’t remember whether she’d taken her medicine, they couldn’t help. She had to move to a place with more care that would handle medications. Then she had a stroke, and we had to quickly find a suitable nursing home. Each time we thought we had it handled, something happened and we needed to quickly adjust.

  99. 99
    Sister Rail Gun of Warm Humanitarianism says:

    @mai naem: Very late to the party, but that’s similar to how I understand a retirement community in Nashville operated. You bought into it, usually at the “still living on your own” stage, and moved into one of the cottages. When things reached the point where you needed more immediate care, you moved to the condos. If things got even worse, you moved into the on-site nursing home.

    My father lucked into a bed in their nursing home for his last six months after a cascade of strokes. I flew over to help my mother navigate qualifying for TennCare. And reminded her of that experience every time she would repeat something knocking Medicaid. It took both of us, the TennCare worker and me, to get it through to her that she could qualify by spending down part of their savings on improvements to the house and prepaying for his funeral. That woman was a blessing, and I have every confidence that she wasn’t unique among the staff.

  100. 100
    cvstoner says:

    Advocates for low-wage workers have pushed for this change, asserting that home care workers, who care for elderly and disabled Americans, were wrongly classified into the same “companionship services” category as baby sitters

    Babysitters? Really? Babysitters?

    Glad they’re finally being recognized for their work. They deserve better than minimum wage, but its a start.

    Fucking babysitters. Unbelievable.

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