The US Congress on Friday allowed an estimated $5 billion cut to a federal food stamps program to take effect, slashing the social safety net for the poor, elderly and disabled. Almost 48 million, or one in seven, Americans have had food subsidies cut 13.6 percent after a 2009 recession-fighting measure expired Thursday with no congressional action to extend it. The cuts come as the world's largest economy has still only achieved a tepid recovery from severe recession, marred by persistently high unemployment and budget gridlock in Washington.
Three unions representing ground staff have agreed to plans by Air France to slash over 5,000 jobs by 2014 as part of a vast plan to make the struggling airline profitable, sources said.The labour union sources said the CFDT, CFE-CGC and FO unions signed onto the deal, which will see the workforce shrink by 10 percent through voluntary departures and job reassignments.The signatures ensure the accord will have sufficient support to be adopted, even though the main union among the 32,000 ground staff, the CGT, has refused to sign up.
Europe has been on the "verge" of a deal for two weeks. However, a deal is meaningless if Germany insists on budget controls. Actually a deal now is meaningless even if Germany does back down because at some point Greek politicians will have had enough. Here are the latest stories.
Yahoo! Finance reports Greece, creditors on verge of clinching debt deal
Air France cancelled 20 percent of its scheduled flights Saturday due to a strike by cabin crew expected to last five days, including a major national holiday.Some 200 out of 1,000 scheduled flights were cancelled, a company spokeswoman told AFP, after two of three unions representing flight attendants called the action to protest plans to reduce the number of crew on each flight.In a statement published on its website, Air France said that "its customers are being held hostage by a five-day strike for which there is no reason."
An excellent point from Kristina Wilfore who observes that if you want a decent test of the “tea party” movement you could do worse than to look at TABOR proposals that would put arbitrary caps on state government spending and force meaningful reductions in the size of government. Two such proposals were on the ballot last night in Washington and Maine and they lost:
In hopes of reducing the impact of Obamacare, Olive Garden and Red Lobster are reducing hours and studying the impact.
Right now, this is just a small test, involving only four stores. However, if large chains are testing in that direction, no doubt other companies are doing the same. I also suspect smaller chains have already shifted to that model completely.