5 Political Operatives Just Hammered Women And Workers

WASHINGTON -- On Monday, the Supreme Court dealt a significant blow to the progressive movement, handing down decisions in two high-profile cases regarding birth control and labor unions.



In Burwell v. Hobby Lobby, the court ruled 5-4 that closely held corporations cannot be required to provide contraception coverage for their employees.



In its 5-4 ruling in Harris v. Quinn, the court gave certain workers the ability to opt out of paying dues to public-sector unions, delivering a setback to the organized labor movement.



Justice Samuel Alito authored the opinion in each case.



In the Hobby Lobby case, the court ruled that the Obama administration had failed to show that the contraception mandate contained in the Affordable Care Act is the "least restrictive means of advancing its interest" in providing birth control at no cost to women.



Hobby Lobby, a Christian-owned craft supply chain store, and Conestoga Wood Specialties Store, a Pennsylvania wood manufacturer owned by a family of Mennonites, had challenged the contraception mandate on the grounds that it violates their religious freedom by requiring them to pay for methods of contraception they find morally objectionable. The owners of those companies believe some forms of birth control -- emergency contraception and intrauterine devices -- are forms of abortion because they could prevent a fertilized egg from implanting in the uterus.



The Affordable Care Act contains a provision requiring most employers to cover the full range of contraception in their health care plans at no cost to their female employees. The Obama administration had granted an exemption for churches and accommodations for religious hospitals, schools and nonprofits, but for-profit companies were required to comply with the coverage rule or pay fines.



But the court ruled that since the exemption already existed for religious institutions, there was no good reason for the government to prevent for-profit corporations owned or controlled by people with religious beliefs from claiming the exemption as well.



"Any suggestion that for-profit corporations are incapable of exercising religion because their purpose is simply to make money flies in the face of modern corporate law," Alito wrote, adding that by requiring religious corporations to cover contraception, "the HHS mandate demands that they engage in conduct that seriously violates their religious beliefs."



The opinion was written narrowly so as only to apply to the contraception mandate, not to religious employers who object to other medical services, like blood transfusions or vaccines. But the four liberal justices argued in their dissent that the ruling will have far-reaching implications, allowing commercial enterprises to "opt out of any law" to which they morally object.



In Harris v. Quinn, the court ruled that certain government-funded employees -- in this case, home care workers paid through Medicaid -- cannot be required to pay fees to the public-sector unions that bargain on their behalf. Requiring such mandatory fees would violate the workers' First Amendment rights, the majority said.



The ruling was not the worst-case scenario that unions had feared. But it will have a financial impact on major unions that have organized Medicaid-funded home care workers and other workers who aren't "full-fledged public employees" in the majority's eyes.



Such workers, the court ruled, cannot be compelled to pay so-called "agency fees." Since unions have to represent all the employees in a particular bargaining unit, they commonly seek requirements in their contracts that all workers, whether union members or not, pay agency fees to help cover the administrative costs of bargaining. This avoids what unions commonly refer to as freeloading by non-union employees.



Demanding an agency fee of the Illinois home care workers who sued the state in Harris v. Quinn would run afoul of the First Amendment, Alito wrote.



"If we accepted Illinois' argument, we would approve an unprecedented violation of the bedrock principle that, except perhaps in the rarest of circumstances, no person in this country may be compelled to subsidize speech by a third party that he or she does not wish to support," Alito wrote, referring to the union.



And yet the majority did not issue a sweeping decision that had the potential to devastate organized labor at large. Anti-union interests, including the National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation, which represented the Harris plaintiffs, had hoped that the court would apply its decision on agency fees to all public-sector workers in the U.S., essentially overturning an earlier Supreme Court case, Abood v. Detroit Board of Education.



With far-reaching implications for an already embattled labor movement, such a ruling would have instituted a kind of right-to-work principle on the public sector, giving workers throughout the country the ability to opt out of supporting the union.



Business Feed :


What to Do When You Start Making Money in a Startup

2014-06-05-01BuildBrandBlastArticleHeader.jpg



Once your company starts making a profit, it's time to redefine your goals and set a direction for accelerating your next stage of growth or establishing yourself more firmly in your niche.



Making money is one of the most important, and sometimes one of the only reasons entrepreneurs start their own enterprise, so once your startup starts making a profit, you might not know what to do with yourself. Depending on what industry you're in, you might have spent months or years investing money in your idea, taking losses to establish your presence and grow your sales.






When you reach that all important turning point and you start to make a reliable profit, you have several options. A consistent, profitable stream of revenue is a sign that your business is stable enough to make your next move. That next move is completely up to you, and it will ultimately shape the destiny of your business for the next several years.






Option 1: Invest in your capabilities.

Take some of your extra money and start improving upon your current system. Hire more people if you need the help, or improve your products and services to appeal to more people. This won't increase your revenue immediately but it will greatly strengthen your company's relationships with its customers and employees.






Option 2: Invest in your reach.

Expand geographically or demographically. Start marketing to new audiences with your extra cash and try to build new lines of revenue. As long as your market research supports the expansion, this is a great way to quickly build your revenue stream.






Option 3: Settle in for a while.

There's nothing wrong with keeping your company consistent as long as it's profitable. Take some time to iron out inefficiencies in your current system and reap the rewards of your favorable balance of revenue and expenses.






Option 4: Complement your company.

You could also allow your company to become self-sustaining and funnel your new profits into a complementary endeavor. That could mean a new brand within your company's overarching brand, or a completely new enterprise that offers a complementary product or service.






These aren't the only options you have, but they're some of the most important to consider. No matter what you choose, stay true to your original model and stay loyal to your customers.






Jose Vasquez is a serial entrepreneur and tech enthusiast dedicated to helping startup technology companies get the direction and momentum they need to succeed. As the founder of Build. Brand. Blast., Jose has established a collective resource for tech entrepreneurs to consult when brainstorming, creating, launching, or expanding a new business. Jose is also the founder and CEO of Quez Media Marketing, a marketing firm that combines technology and creativity to help new and growing companies get the results they need.






Jose graduated from Goldman Sachs' 10,000 Small Businesses program. Goldman Sachs is a partner of the What Is Working: Small Businesses section.






Follow Jose:






Facebook

Twitter

LinkedIn






Business Feed :


Beyonce Tops Forbes' Celebrity 100 List

GM Announces Compensation Program For Victims Of Ignition Switch Crashes

JOAN LOWY & TOM KRISHER, Associated Press



WASHINGTON (AP) — Kenneth Feinberg is prepared to pay out billions of General Motors' money to victims of crashes in GM small cars — provided they can prove the cars' ignition switches caused the crash.



GM links 13 deaths to a defective ignition switch in cars such as the Chevrolet Cobalt and Saturn Ion. But trial lawyers and lawmakers say claims of wrongful death and injury could total in the hundreds.



Feinberg, one of the country's top compensation experts, said GM has placed no limit on the total amount he can pay to injured people or relatives of those killed. And he alone — not GM — will decide how much they each will get, even though he is being paid by the company.



Feinberg wouldn't estimate the ultimate cost for GM, saying he has no idea how many death or injury claims he will get. Based on the methodology he plans to employ, a large amount of claims could mean a sum running into the hundreds of millions of dollars, if not billions.



"GM has basically said whatever it costs to pay any eligible claims under the protocol they will pay it. There is no ceiling," Feinberg said at a Monday news conference in Washington to announce details of the plan.



With the plan, GM is trying to limit its legal liabilities, control the damage to its image and eventually move beyond the crisis caused by its failure to correct the ignition switch problem for more than a decade, even as it learned of fatal crashes. The company recalled 2.6 million older small cars earlier this year to replace the switches.



Only those hurt in crashes caused by the small-car ignition switches are eligible, so the program excludes other GM safety problems. People filing claims will have to prove that the switches caused the crashes. Once their claim is settled, they give up their right to sue the company.



Claims can be filed from Aug. 1 to Dec. 31. Once the filing is completed, Feinberg promises payment in 90 to 180 days in most cases. People who previously settled lawsuits with GM are eligible to apply for more compensation.



Feinberg said he will not consider whether those injured in crashes contributed to the cause by drinking alcohol, speeding, not wearing seat belts or other behavior. But GM could use that as a defense if the cases go to trial, he said.



"We have no interest in evaluating any alleged contributory negligence on the part of the driver," he said.



In many cases, cars have been destroyed and it will be difficult to determine if the switches caused the crash, Feinberg said.



"Unlike the 911 fund or the BP oil spill fund, many of these accidents occurred years ago, decades ago," Feinberg said. He urged those seeking compensation to use police, hospital, insurance and auto repair records to buttress their claims. If the accident vehicle is still available, that's even better, he said.



Legal experts say GM has almost no defenses left in crash lawsuits because it conceded the switches are defective and that its employees were negligent in failing to recall the cars. A GM-funded probe by an outside attorney blamed the delays on a dysfunctional corporate culture and misconduct by some employees. The company has dismissed 15 workers in the case.



Feinberg said he won't consider whether a crash happened before GM left bankruptcy protection in July of 2009. Under its bankruptcy deal, "New GM" — the company that emerged from court protection — is shielded from claims stemming from crashes that happened before the bankruptcy. Those claims go to "Old GM," the remnants of the company left behind in the bankruptcy, which has few assets.



Crashes that occurred after the bankruptcy could get big judgments in court, so it may take more money for Feinberg to settle them. Lawyers are challenging the bankruptcy shield, and if that fails, pre-bankruptcy claimants may have to settle with Feinberg.



The faulty ignition switches can slip from "run" to "accessory," unexpectedly shutting off the engines. That knocks out power steering and brakes and can cause drivers to lose control. In addition, the air bags won't inflate due to lack of power, so they won't protect people in a crash. Feinberg said if the air bags inflated, that negates a claim because that means the crash wasn't caused by the switch.



If air bag inflation is in doubt, the claims still will be considered, Feinberg said.



Drivers, passengers, pedestrians and occupants of cars hit by GM vehicles are eligible for payment, Feinberg said.



Feinberg will follow the same methodology he used when he handled a $7 billion government fund for victims of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. He has detailed formulas setting payments based on a victim's age, earnings potential and severity of injuries.



Those injured can either follow the formula and get a quick payment, or try to justify a bigger payment through "an individual negotiation tied to the extraordinary circumstances of the claim," Feinberg said. Claimants still not satisfied after that can sue GM.



Under Feinberg's formula, for example, relatives of a deceased 25-year-old earning $75,000 per year who is married with two children would get $5.1 million. But the relatives could build a case to get more, he said. Severely injured people could get more money than some death cases, Feinberg said. For example, a 40-year-old earning $70,000 per year who is married with no children and became a paraplegic in a crash would get $6.6 million under the formula.



Feinberg will limit how much he'll pay people with less-serious injuries, based on how long they stayed in the hospital, similar to the way he compensated victims of the Boston Marathon bombings. But there is no cap on potential payments to relatives of those killed and people with catastrophic injuries that caused brain damage, amputation, serious burns or paralysis. In addition, Feinberg said it won't matter whether drivers contributed to their crashes by drinking alcohol, texting or failing to wear seat belts.



"GM has agreed that it cannot challenge my ultimate determination," Feinberg said. "They have no right to appeal."



With the Sept. 11 fund, the average award to families of those killed was $2.1 million though 2,880 claims. The fund also paid an average of about $400,000 each for the 2,680 accepted claims of injuries stemming from the attacks. The smallest injury award was $500, the largest $8.6 million, according to the report. Only about 80 lawsuits rose from the attacks.



GM said in a statement that Feinberg's plan shows it is taking responsibility for what happened to victims "by treating them with compassion, decency and fairness."



Feinberg acknowledged that some people will question his fairness, given that he was hired by GM.



"The only way you overcome that problem is by demonstrating through the awards that the program is fair," he said. "Money is a pretty poor substitute for loss. It's the limits of what we can do, unfortunately."



____



Krisher and Auto Writer Dee-Ann Durbin reported from Detroit.



Business Feed :


The Future

I recently finished reading Physics of the Future by Dr. Michio Kaku. After countless hours of time spent with the smartest scientists on earth, Dr. Kaku's book chronicles predictions for the coming world between now and the year 2100.



We have all learned about globalization and seen its effect over recent years. It is now clear to me, though, that human progress will not simply stop at various nations getting along. As we work up the Kardashev scale toward a Type 1 civilization and leave behind current Type 0 civilization a shift beyond world peace could happen in the next few generations. Eventually, around the year 2100 or shortly after, the existing nation borders could actually dissolve away. Society could become a planetary civilization in the next few centuries. This is an exciting and scary proposition, especially considering the world is currently predominately driven by capitalist economies that benefit from competition in the markets. This future that Dr. Michio Kaku lays the framework for will be a major shift from our current society. While reading Physics of the Future one thought seems to keep reoccurring: We have to get this "better future" right. The stakes are high and there is not likely a second chance for society if we mess the future up on a global scale.



Over the past century, society has already begun the transition from a working economy to an information economy. Now, as the early stage proliferation of the Internet continues to mature, we are beginning another transition from an information economy to a newer wisdom economy.



The quality of information and not the quantity of information will be the focus in the future.


Mass data collection continues to constantly grow in the background and needs to be digestible. As big data continues to get bigger and bigger, a new product focus on wisdom will be the only way to drink from the fire hose of information we are dealt on a daily basis. In order to cross the gap into the future, society will need to be responsible with not only the environment but also humanity across borders. By shifting from an information economy to a wisdom economy and overcoming the challenges associated with that shift it should allow society to level up on the Kardashev scale.



The thought of failure of this challenge can be haunting at times while reading Physics of the Future. However, Dr. Michio Kaku had an answer for this haunting thought that was surprisingly incredible. Nothing sums the solution to this rough transition ahead more than the quote that Dr. Michio Kaku closed the book with:



"The Roots of Violence:

Wealth without work,

Pleasure without conscience,

Knowledge without character,

Commerce without morality,

Science without humanity,

Worship without sacrifice,

Politics without principles."

- Mahatma Gandhi, 22 October 1925






I found Gandhi's wise words to be invigorating and almost 100 years after he said them, still refreshingly accurate. They will be more important than ever as society approaches a time, for example, when work the way we know it may not be as necessary due to future robotics and computers. A few of the characteristics defined by Gandhi will change and while they do it will be the responsibility of individuals to keep in mind the character built by them.



Personally, I cannot wait for the future ahead of us. It will be one crazy ride. We can let this ride terrify us while we will fight it, or we can embrace it and enjoy it. Either way, the fact is we cannot make the world stop and stand still where it is. Progress will forever be marched forward by others in the world around us. Therefore, I suggest the latter. So, while we enjoy the ride up to the year 2100, let's try to remember those words Gandhi spoke almost 100 years ago.



Business Feed :


RIP Orkut: Google to Shut Down Its First Social Network

Orkut

Before there was Google+ or even Google Buzz, there was Orkut, Google's first social network.


Google launched Orkut in January 2004, after attempting to acquire Friendster, the hot social network of the time. Orkut gained some traction in Brazil, but never really caught on in the United States. The month after it launched, Facebook went online at Harvard and gradually came to dominate the social networking space



On Monday, Google announced that it plans to shut down Orkut on Sept. 30, after more than 10 years of service. Existing users will be able to export their information using Google Takeout, but new users are no longer able to create accounts. Read more...


More about Google, Orkut, and Business





via Business Feeds

There’s a Good Chance You’re in the Wrong Job

You Can Now Order a McDonald’s Big Mac on Your iPhone

Swingline Paper Shredder: mo




Good luck.



Advertising Agency: Talent, Sao Paulo, Brazil

Chief Creative Officer: João Livi

Creative Directors: Philippe Degen, Eduardo Martins

Copywriters: Leonardo Marçal, Luiz Paccillo

Art Directors: Bruno Trad, Victor Toyofuku

Photographer / Art Buyer: Mario Coelho

Account Manager: Ricardo Nociti

Account Director: Erick Sobral

Planning Director: Renata Serafim

Executive Media Director: Paulo Stephan

Media Director: Renata Giovannetti







via Business Feeds

Swingline Paper Shredder: gr




Good luck.



Advertising Agency: Talent, Sao Paulo, Brazil

Chief Creative Officer: João Livi

Creative Directors: Philippe Degen, Eduardo Martins

Copywriters: Leonardo Marçal, Luiz Paccillo

Art Directors: Bruno Trad, Victor Toyofuku

Photographer / Art Buyer: Mario Coelho

Account Manager: Ricardo Nociti

Account Director: Erick Sobral

Planning Director: Renata Serafim

Executive Media Director: Paulo Stephan

Media Director: Renata Giovannetti







via Business Feeds

Swingline Paper Shredder: th




Good luck.



Advertising Agency: Talent, Sao Paulo, Brazil

Chief Creative Officer: João Livi

Creative Directors: Philippe Degen, Eduardo Martins

Copywriters: Leonardo Marçal, Luiz Paccillo

Art Directors: Bruno Trad, Victor Toyofuku

Photographer / Art Buyer: Mario Coelho

Account Manager: Ricardo Nociti

Account Director: Erick Sobral

Planning Director: Renata Serafim

Executive Media Director: Paulo Stephan

Media Director: Renata Giovannetti







via Business Feeds

Top 10 Reasons Executive Recruiters Won't Represent You

My name is Mark Wayman and for the last ten years I have owned an Executive Recruiting company focused on gaming/casinos and high tech. Placed 600+ executives, typically at compensation of $100,000+. Although most of these tips are aimed at the $100,000+ executive, they pretty much apply to all jobs.



These are my top ten reasons why Executive Recruiters won't represent a specific candidate. There are a hundred reasons, however for me personally, these are the big ones...especially the first three. Before you tear into these, let me tell you the most important thing about an Executive Recruiter - they find executives for jobs, NOT jobs for executives. They are paid by the hiring company, NOT the candidate. So they spend most of their time with hiring companies, and rarely represent an executive candidate unless they are AN EXACT MATCH FOR AN EXISTING JOB. It has nothing to do with how talented you are, where you went to school or how old you are. They don't know you well enough to not like you! They get paid to fill their existing open jobs. If they don't focus on that...they don't eat. Don't take it personally!



Being a Narcissistic Megalomaniac -- The number one reason that candidates do not move forward in the interview process -- ARROGANCE and EGO. No matter how talented you are, no matter how smart you are, if the hiring manager does not LIKE you, forget about getting a job offer. No one likes a self-absorbed, self-serving elitist. For every "C" level search, the hiring company may have 200+ volunteers and twenty strong candidates. If you think it is an honor and privilege to have you on payroll, you will soon find out...it is not. Humble and genuine is attractive!



Spinning the Truth -- Integrity is a HUGE deal breaker. Seems simple and straightforward, however I had a dozen bad experiences last year with executives that were dishonest. These are people that make $500,000 to $1,000,000. Be completely honest about job titles, compensation, job tenure and education. Even after you sign the offer, pass the drug screen, fly through the background check and start work, you can (and will) be fired if you were anything less than 100 percent straightforward on your resume or employment application. Always be completely honest!



Gloomy Gus or Debbie Downer -- Companies want to hire happy, positive, enthusiastic executives. Making negative statements about former supervisors or companies during an interview is a major faux pas. Had a CTO candidate interview with the CEO of a large publicly traded company. When asked why he left his job in Dallas his response was, "I went through this nasty divorce; let me tell you about it." End of interview. NEVER talk about your personal life during an interview. Positive and enthusiastic is attractive!



Not Pricing Your House to Sell -- This is another common error. Have you ever listed your house at the price you wanted despite the fact the comps showed it was worth $100,000 less? If you price yourself out of the market by making unreasonable compensation demands, you better have a huge rainy day fund. The world has changed, and so have compensation packages. Depends on the skill set, however most executive compensation packages have dropped about 25 percent. I get a lot of this, "Back in 2004 I was making $500,000 a year." That was then, this is now. Price your house to sell!



Being TOO BUSY to Get a Job -- Finding a new career opportunity is hard, painstaking work. You need to make yourself available to Recruiters and hiring managers throughout the interview process. If you don't, they will drop you like a hot rock. Executive Recruiters has no shortage of candidates. Remember, the Executive Recruiter does not need a job...you do. Make yourself available -- never be too busy to get a job!



Don't Burn your Bridges -- Believe it or not, most big cities are more like Mayberry RFD. In Las Vegas, there are two million people, however only two hundred people make most of the decisions. They all know each other; they all exchange referrals. There is no upside to burning bridges. If someone likes you they will tell one friend. If someone does not like you, they will tell ten friends. Relationships trump talent every day of the week. Don't burn your bridges!



Burning the BIG Bridge -- About 80 percent of $100,000+ jobs come from your network and the other 20 percent come from Executive Recruiters. If you decide to part ways with a Recruiter, shake hands and walk away friends. Never, ever burn a Recruiter! They all know each other. If you get a reputation as a bad actor, you are setting yourself up for failure. Never burn a Recruiter!



What we Have Here is a Failure to Communicate -- If you are being represented by an Executive Recruiter, it is critical that you stay in constant contact. If you interview, provide feedback. If the client company contacts you directly, let the Recruiter know. Never end run the process. If you have other irons in the fire, let the Recruiter know so no one gets caught off guard. Most importantly, if you accept a job offer, let the Recruiter know you are off the market AND thank them profusely for the time and effort they expended on your behalf. If there is one thing an Executive Recruiter despises, it's getting caught off guard because the candidate did not communicate. Maintain constant communication with your Recruiter!



Spamming Your Resume -- Distributing your resume to a dozen Recruiters and two dozen online job postings is a dreadful approach. Aside from smelling like desperation, applying to online ads is a 1 percent proposition. Do you really want to work for a company that advertises a $200,000 job on CareerBuilder for $100? Really? Keep in mind that an Executive Recruiter can only present you to companies where you have not applied in the last 12 months. I routinely have candidates tell me they have applied to most of the companies in Las Vegas. Well...how am I supposed to help you then? Use your personal and professional network to find opportunities. Beyond that, develop a strong relationship with one or two recruiters. Don't spray your resume!



Confidentiality -- All placement work is extremely sensitive in nature. In many cases the incumbent has not been terminated yet. Confidential means CONFIDENTIAL. Don't discuss it with anyone -- not your peers, not your friends. I have dropped a number of candidates that could not keep things on the TQ. Keep sensitive information confidential!



The Lost Art of Gratitude (Bonus Tip) -- If you want to stand out from the masses, show gratitude and appreciation every step of the way. With the hiring company and the Recruiter. They will remember you for saying "thank you!"; they will definitely remember if you don't. The first time it happened to me was a CIO that I placed in a great job. She never said thank you. Not a phone call. Not an email. Five years later when she was out of work I declined to represent her. Yes, I get paid to do this, however an attitude of gratitude never goes out of style. Be grateful!



Business Feed :


Corporations Are People, And They Have More Rights Than You

Ever since Citizens United, the Supreme Court's 2010 decision allowing unlimited corporate and union spending on political issues, Americans have been debating whether, as Mitt Romney said, "Corporations are people, my friend." Occupy Wall Street protestors decried the idea, late night comedians mocked it, and reform groups proposed amending the Constitution to eliminate it. Today, however, the Supreme Court endorsed corporate personhood -- holding that business firms have rights to religious freedom under federal law. Not only do corporations have rights, their rights are stronger than yours.



The question came to the Supreme Court in a challenge to regulations implementing President Obama's landmark health care law. Those regulations require employers with 50 or more employees to provide those employees with comprehensive health insurance, which must include certain forms of contraception. The contraception requirement was designed to protect the rights of women. Studies show that access to contraception has positive benefits for women's education, income, mental health, and family stability.



Protecting women's rights, according to the Court, isn't a good enough reason for the government to force a business corporation, at least a privately held one like chain craft store Hobby Lobby, to include birth control in its insurance contrary to the business owner's wishes. At least that's what the Supreme Court, in a 5-4 decision, held in Hobby Lobby. Federal statutes guaranteeing religious freedom to "persons" apply equally to closely held business corporations, and those corporations' religious liberty is "substantially burdened" by having to provide their employees with contraception. So the rights of employees have to give way to the rights of the corporation.



The Court's decision in Hobby Lobby isn't a surprise. The Roberts Court has been largely hostile to the rights of women -- allowing greater restrictions on abortion, restricting their ability to sue for workplace discrimination, and limiting the scope of family leave laws. Meanwhile, the data show that the Roberts Court is the most business-friendly Supreme Court in nearly a century. Just as Citizens United expanded the rights of business corporations to speak about political issues -- and, in the eyes of many, enabling them to drown out the voices of We the People -- Hobby Lobby has given businesses another powerful tool to fight against regulation. Hobby Lobby's religious rights enable the firm to ignore the voices of women who wish to enjoy the health benefits from controlling reproduction.



And women may not be the only victims. What religious rights will business corporations seek next? The Court said that its decision wouldn't necessarily mean that closely-held businesses could obtain exemptions from health care regulations mandating insurance coverage for vaccinations and blood transfusions. Yet the Court did grant those corporations today a right to make such claims in court. If ensuring women's control over reproduction -- a constitutional right -- isn't a strong enough reason to limit the religious rights of Hobby Lobby, it's not clear why these other laws won't fall too.



LGBT people may be next. Remember a few months ago when Arizona almost adopted a controversial law that would have given business corporations a broad right to use religion to make claims for exemptions from the law? That proposed law was rightly seen as an attack on LGBT rights, as supporters insisted that business owners who object to same-sex marriage shouldn't be forced to bake cakes, take pictures, or arrange the flowers at such ceremonies. After Hobby Lobby, now all business corporations have a right under federal law to claim religious-based exemptions to all sorts of laws -- including laws prohibiting discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation.



To its credit, the Court's majority recognized the trouble created by the ruling and suggested that firms would not be entitled to discriminate on the basis of race. "The Government has a compelling interest in providing an equal opportunity to participate in the workforce without regard to race," the majority wrote. Yet the Court's omission of LGBT discrimination is worrisome. The justices must have understood that the current conflict between religion and anti-discrimination law involves LGBT people, not racial minorities. No corporation is seeking to use religion as an excuse to discriminate against African-Americans, while several are seeking to discriminate against LGBT people. About that, the majority says nothing.



If the Court's ruling is read to permit challenges to laws barring discrimination against LGBT people, Hobby Lobby will be the Arizona law on steroids. It wouldn't apply in one state but across the nation.



So while a business corporation can't go to church, fast on Yom Kippur, or travel to Mecca for Ramadan, it can still go to court and, on the basis of religious freedom, demand to be exempted from the law that applies to everyone else. Today, women are the victim. Tomorrow, it could be LGBT people. Indeed, after Hobby Lobby, every person is at risk. Everyone, that is, except the corporate person, my friend.



Business Feed :


Site connects brands with individual journalists to help them get press

justreachout

Not everyone has contacts in the media, which can make it an unfair playing field when it comes to getting press on a new product. While the Winnipeg Free Press recently opened its own branded cafe where the public can mingle with the paper’s reporters, a new service called JustReachOut is helping businesses to eschew PR firms by connecting them directly to the most relevant journalists.


Founded by Dmitry Dragilev, who also created Criminally Prolific, a consultancy company that helps startups accelerate in creative ways, JustReachOut is designed similarly for small companies looking to market their products or services. Rather than blanket emailing hundreds of reporters, the platform enables users to search the news for existing articles that fit into their area of expertise. After scouring the web, users see a list of reporters that cover the kind of activity they’re trying to promote, along with a verified email address to contact them. JustReachOut then gets startups to answer questions about the things they want to tell the reporter, compiling them into a draft for a perfect pitch to send over. It also helps them build long-term relationships with the relevant press.


JustReachOut is priced at USD 49 a month for a one-year subscription. Are there other ways to help startups market their products more effectively?


Website: www.justreachout.io

Contact: hi@justreachout.io






















RSS Business Feeds

G.M. Will Pay Out at Least $1 Million Per Victim of Ignition Defect

VH1: Billy



Advertising Agency: Grey, Buenos Aires, Argentina

Executive Creative Director: Diego Medvedocky

Creative Directors: Hernán Kritzer, Lisandro Cardozo, Alejandro Devoto

Copywriter: Darío Porterie

Art Director: Diego Alonso

Executive Account Director: Florencia Pereyra

Agency Producer: Sergio Bonavia







via Business Feeds

VH1: Tina



Advertising Agency: Grey, Buenos Aires, Argentina

Executive Creative Director: Diego Medvedocky

Creative Directors: Hernán Kritzer, Lisandro Cardozo, Alejandro Devoto

Copywriter: Darío Porterie

Art Director: Diego Alonso

Executive Account Director: Florencia Pereyra

Agency Producer: Sergio Bonavia







via Business Feeds

VH1: Paul



Advertising Agency: Grey, Buenos Aires, Argentina

Executive Creative Director: Diego Medvedocky

Creative Directors: Hernán Kritzer, Lisandro Cardozo, Alejandro Devoto

Copywriter: Darío Porterie

Art Director: Diego Alonso

Executive Account Director: Florencia Pereyra

Agency Producer: Sergio Bonavia







via Business Feeds

Go Behind the Scenes as 2 Entrepreneurs Set Up Shop

Stephen-drill




"Any time one of my friends tells me they want to open a small business, the first thing I do is try to talk them out of it," says Stephen Roginson, who's in the process of setting up his own business in Detroit.


The life of a small business owner — especially in the very early days — is not an easy one. You're human resources, the accountant, the marketer and the general contractor. You're subject to the harsh regulations of zoning and permits, and you have to have your game face on as you meet customers — and prospective customers — in the neighborhood at all hours of the day. It's not a pretty ride, but it's an exciting and invigorating one, especially for entrepreneurs looking not just to make a profit, but to feed a passion and create a way to connect with people. In our new video series, Setting Up Shop Read more...


More about Mashable Video, Business, Small Business, Supported, and Setting Up Shop





via Business Feeds

TransPacific Partnership deal elusive as talks set for Ottawa

Canada's new foreign policy focus

Next week, hundreds of negotiators from 11 Asia-Pacific countries descend on Ottawa as part of the Trans-Pacific Partnership talks, but a deal is still elusive.






via Business Feeds

U.N.'s Own Study Reveals Its $13 Billion Maternal Health Efforts Aren't Saving Lives

LONDON (AP) — In the past decade, billions of dollars have been spent trying to save the lives of mothers in developing countries using strategies — usually inexpensive drugs — deemed essential by the U.N. health agency.



Yet two large analyses of maternal health programs— including one conducted by the U.N. itself — report that the efforts appeared almost useless, raising troubling questions about why all that money was spent.



While critics are calling for the pricey global initiatives to be significantly overhauled, the programs are still being implemented despite little proof they work. The practices mainly involve things like ensuring women giving birth get cheap drugs such as magnesium sulphate to treat labor complications or pre-emptive antibiotics for those getting a cesarean section.



Even public health officials acknowledge they were taken aback by the studies.



"Nobody could have been more surprised than I was when we got the results," said Dr. Omrana Pasha of Aga Khan University in Pakistan, who led a study of maternal health interventions in six countries in Latin America, Africa and Asia.



"In clinical medicine, we would not prescribe a drug unless multiple trials show that it works," she added. "The FDA won't allow a drug to be marketed without that evidence. But things are different in public health."



At an international meeting of U.N. partners starting Monday in South Africa, health officials are getting ready to ask donors for even more money to pour into maternal health programs. Since 2009, the U.S. has invested more than $13 billion in maternal and child survival, hoping to save lives by supporting "high-impact" health interventions.



According to the research papers, including one done in 30 countries that tracked more than 300,000 women, scientists found no link between the supposedly life-saving interventions and the death rates of women giving birth. Areas that used the interventions didn't have better survival rates for mothers than areas that didn't.



The two papers published last year are the biggest to assess the effectiveness of maternal health strategies, although smaller studies have previously suggested the methods help. But they gained little traction, perhaps because there doesn't appear to be an easy fix.



Experts, meanwhile, are largely stumped as to why their methods failed to prevent deaths.



"We assume that if women get these things, they will be saved. But it's too simple to say one plus one equals two," said Dr. Marleen Temmerman, director of WHO's maternal health department.



She isn't convinced the interventions don't work. She suspects there were problems implementing the strategies.



"Maybe the health facility has the medicine, but the man who has the key to the cupboard is gone," she suggested.



Temmerman also said it would be dangerous if donors abruptly slashed their support for maternal health initiatives.



"The message is not to stop investing, it's to invest money more wisely," she said.



Some experts said existing plans should be adjusted.



"These essential interventions are important but they are not enough," said Sandrine Simon, a public health adviser at Doctors of the World charity. "This is about more than buying the right medicines."



But others said major changes were required to save more women.



"We need to be more honest and serious about past failures otherwise we will keep making the same mistakes," said Bill Easterly, an economist at New York University. "It's not just the fault of countries receiving aid who aren't implementing the technology properly, it's the fault of Western aid agencies and donors who are not trying hard enough to get it right."



Business Feed :


LGBT Applicants Less Likely To Be Called Back For Interviews With Federal Contractors, Study Shows

WASHINGTON -- Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender employees were 23 percent less likely to be called back for interviews with federal contractors when compared with similar -- but less qualified -- non-LGBT applicants, according to a new study.



The Equal Rights Center and Freedom to Work conducted a study using fictional pairs of resumes to apply for 100 jobs with eight federal contractors. One resume listed an applicant's leadership role in an LGBT organization, and one listed a role in a non-LGBT organization, such as an environmental or women's rights group. The LGBT applicant, however, was designed to be stronger in numerous ways, such as a higher GPA and stronger work experience.



The stronger resumes, however, weren't enough; the LGBT applicants were less likely to receive a follow-up request for an interview.



"Despite significant progress in advancing civil rights and equality, employment discrimination remains a persistent barrier for the LGBT community," said ERC Executive Director Melvina Ford. "The results of this investigation show that LGBT applicants face discrimination when seeking employment with federal contractors, even when compared with less-qualified candidates."



The study, which was conducted from December 2012 to December 2013, comes as President Barack Obama gets ready to issue an executive order that would bar federal contractors from discriminating on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity.



Response to Obama's recent announcement from the federal contractors who don't have internal policies protecting LGBT workers has been relatively muted so far.



While the overall findings of the ERC/Freedom to Work study are new, the groups had already released one of the most jarring examples from their research.



tammy duckworth
Chart by ERC/Freedom to Work






In December 2012, "Jennifer" and "Michelle" applied to ExxonMobil, which does not have sexual orientation and gender identity protections.



The two had nearly identical backgrounds and experience, with the exception that Jennifer had better grades, superior experience and a history of LGBT activism. Only Michelle, however, received a request for an interview.



In 2013, Freedom to Work filed a complaint with the Illinois Human Rights Commission arguing that ExxonMobil violated a state law prohibiting LGBT discrimination.



"Taxpayers should never have to subsidize the kind of anti-LGBT discrimination that was uncovered during this year-long study of contractors with inadequate LGBT workplace protections," said Tico Almeida, founder and president of Freedom to Work. "President Obama’s upcoming executive order will send a strong message that government contracts should be staffed with the highest qualified job candidates, and nobody should ever lose out on a career opportunity just because of who they are or whom they love."



In April 2012, the Williams Institute at UCLA School of Law found that 86 percent of the top 50 federal contractors prohibited discrimination based on sexual orientation, and 55 prohibited gender identity discrimination.



Last year, the Senate passed the broader Employment Non-Discrimination Act, which would bar LGBT workplace discrimination nationwide for businesses with more than 15 employees. The House has not yet taken up the legislation, and Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) has not indicated that it will do so anytime in the near future.



Business Feed :


The 10 Commandments of Grocery Shopping

Given the fact that the employees at my local grocery store see me more than my own family does, it's safe to say that I have quite a bit of experience pushing a full cart around.



While I generally enjoy the experience because a) I love finding and checking things off of a list and b) food, there are a few simple things that would make it better for all those involved.



The 10 Commandments of Grocery Shopping





1. Thou shall not leave your cart in an empty parking spot.



There are two kinds of people in this world: 1) those who return carts to the cart corral and 2) a-holes. Leaving a cart to find it's own way home often results in the cart camping out in a parking spot someone will inevitably pull halfway into before realizing the cart is there and angrily backing out, pissing off people behind them. The carts have a home. Help them find their home.



2. Thou shall not walk down the center aisle of the parking lot.



You do not have super-human pedestrian powers that override people in their cars trying to get past or around you. Pick a side -- any side -- and no one gets hurt.



3. Thou shall travel up and down the aisle like a civilized person.



Up one side, down the other. If you're barreling down the middle or the wrong side like a linebacker and clip my cart, I am not above throwing a shoulder. Also, try to refrain from doing a 180 halfway down a jam-packed aisle only to amble along as if you're taking in the sights of the Louvre. It's soup. Not the Sistine Chapel.



4. Thou shall obey the express line rules.



The sign says 15 items or less. It does not say, "Everything you can stick in the small-ass cart you chose instead of regular cart." That does not refer to the number of item types, but the actual item count. For example, those 75 cans of soup that took you 15 minutes to pick out does not count as a single item. You are not a special snowflake. If everybody ignored this rule, it would just be a regular line.



5. Thou shalt not decide against the frozen pizza you picked up in the frozen foods section and then place it on the shelf next to the shampoo.



Really? Come on now, people.



6. Thou shall respect the invisible checkout line bubble of personal space.



Regardless of how close you creep up or how many items you throw on the belt, you will be next--after me. If you continue to creep up, I will pretend to go through my coupon keeper for an extraordinary amount of time and chit chat with the cashier...unless you would like to pay for my produce. In that case, you have a deal.



7. Thou shall treat the cashier with respect.



This means not chatting on your phone while she's ringing up your groceries or getting ticked when she won't accept the four expired coupons you thought she'd ignore. If you get caught trying to sneak in an expired coupon, just let it go. It's 35-cents off of dish soap. You'll survive.



8. Thou shall not stop at the exit to go over your receipt.



Once given your receipt and all 300 extra pieces of paper that get pumped out of the printer with it, do not stop and read the receipt like it's a treasure map. There is nothing on that paper that is that important that you need to throw on the brakes and cause a backup. Move it along.



9. Thou shall reconsider the self-checkout.



Know your limits. Can you find a bar code on a product? Match the picture of bananas on the screen to the bananas in your cart? Flatten paper money to insert into a slot? If you answered "no" to any of those questions, don't be a hero. Go through the normal checkout.



10. Thou shall not stalk for a parking spot.



Finally, do not slowly drive behind me at 5 mph impatiently waiting for my parking spot that is often only two down from another available spot. Unless you're going to get out and help me unload my groceries into the back, your insistence on sitting there, impatiently revving the engine on your minivan, will force me to do a full vehicle check -- interior and exterior -- before getting back in and leaving 5 minutes later.



Thank you for shopping with us.



Have a nice day.



Read more at http://ift.tt/NRbyDo.



Business Feed :


Panamericana School of Art and Design: Streets, 3




Courses in photography and drawing.



Advertising Agency: almapBBDO, Sao Paulo, Brazil

Chief Creative Officer: Marcello Serpa

Executive Creative Director: Luiz Sanches

Creative Directors: Renato Simões, Bruno Prosperi

Art Director: Caio Tezoto

Copywriter: Carol Nigro

Illustrators: Toni Caputo, Caio Tezoto

Photography: Getty Images

Photographer: Hugo Treu

Account Manager: Isabela Crestana







via Business Feeds

Panamericana School of Art and Design: Streets, 2




Courses in photography and drawing.



Advertising Agency: almapBBDO, Sao Paulo, Brazil

Chief Creative Officer: Marcello Serpa

Executive Creative Director: Luiz Sanches

Creative Directors: Renato Simões, Bruno Prosperi

Art Director: Caio Tezoto

Copywriter: Carol Nigro

Illustrators: Toni Caputo, Caio Tezoto

Photography: Getty Images

Photographer: Hugo Treu

Account Manager: Isabela Crestana







via Business Feeds

Panamericana School of Art and Design: Streets, 1




Courses in photography and drawing.



Advertising Agency: almapBBDO, Sao Paulo, Brazil

Chief Creative Officer: Marcello Serpa

Executive Creative Director: Luiz Sanches

Creative Directors: Renato Simões, Bruno Prosperi

Art Director: Caio Tezoto

Copywriter: Carol Nigro

Illustrators: Toni Caputo, Caio Tezoto

Photography: Getty Images

Photographer: Hugo Treu

Account Manager: Isabela Crestana







via Business Feeds

UKTI hopes Andy Murray can serve up repeated success for British exports

Hot weather and Scot's long-awaited Wimbledon win contributed to 26% spike in exports of tennis equipment last year

If the pressure on Andy Murray at Wimbledon was not already enough, the government is hoping a repeat of last year's victory could also rekindle last summer's boom in exports of tennis rackets and strawberries.


The UK's trade and investment department (UKTI) has flagged up that hot weather and Murray's win on the grass court last year the first for a Briton in 77 years were partly behind a 26% spike in exports of tennis equipment.


Continue reading...



via Business Feeds

GM's Compensation Plan for Ignition Switch Victims Is Unlimited

Mary-barra-.jpg

General Motors could be paying out billions of dollars to people harmed in crashes caused by faulty ignition switches in older-model small cars, according to details of a plan announced Monday by Kenneth Feinberg, the nation's most well-known compensation expert.


GM says it's trying to do the right thing by making the payments. The company says at least 54 crashes and 13 deaths were caused by the problem, but lawyers and lawmakers say there will be hundreds of claims. GM is recalling 2.6 million small cars from 2003-2011 due to the problem. Feinberg says there's no limit to the total amount he can pay, and GM can't overrule his decisions. Read more...


More about Business





via Business Feeds