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Jobs report live updates: Market expected to show further cooling in April



The Labor Department will release its April jobs report on Friday, which is expected to show a continued slowdown in hiring as pandemic-era growth sectors return to normal levels of activity and higher interest rates hold back business expansion.

Forecasters estimate that the economy added 180,000 jobs last month, a notable step up from the monthly average of 345,000 jobs in the first quarter of 2023, but not yet the contraction many predict later in the fall.

“We expect a more negative and deeper effect of interest rates on the labor market in the second half of the year,” said Frank Steamers, senior economist at the Conference Board. “At the beginning of the year, employment growth was much stronger than I expected.”

Job creation has repeatedly exceeded forecasts over the past year, even despite the efforts of the Federal Reserve to lower prices by making borrowing more expensive. But the job postings were receding rapidlyand the rate of dismissal of workers is almost back to the level of 2019. At the same time, more Americans are returning to work and immigration has rebounded, making it a little easier for employers to hire.

In March, interest rate-sensitive industries such as construction and manufacturing began cutting jobs as they filled orders piled up during the pandemic. Jobs firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas said on Thursday that Employers have announced job cuts totaling about 337,000 positions. this year’s focus is on the retail and technology industries.

If a wider economic downturn sets in, job cuts are likely to look different than during previous recessions.

Mr. Steamers recently built by index assessment of the risk of job loss in various industries. Demand for labor in areas such as leisure and hospitality — where staffing has not yet returned to pre-pandemic levels — has been so strong that even cuts in consumer spending would not have led to mass layoffs.

But industries like the information sector, which has been hiring rapidly in 2021 and 2022 to serve a population that has become more dependent on technology during lockdowns and shifts to remote work, could cut even further.


About “Fleabag”, Corbin’s government and Kenneth Clark’s tandoori



I FINALLY FOUND TO watch a few episodes of Fleabag to figure out what all the fuss is about. Some good scenes, I thought, and a gorgeously hideous character with a beard, but other than that, not impressive. The transgression of conventions (addressing the camera, graphic sexual innuendos, sleeping with a priest) was tediously commonplace; the sentimentality, especially about the pet hamster, was cloying… “Fleabag” and the hype surrounding “Fleabag” is nevertheless interesting for sociological reasons: it demonstrates the annexation of another area of ​​British life, the self-worship of the upper middle classes.

Comedy used to be a fairly working-class thing. During the Victorian and Edwardian eras, the upper classes (including Edward VII) went to music halls to listen to the songs and jokes of the working class. Many of the giants of post-war comedy, such as Eric Morecambe and Les Dawson (pictured left), came from northern working class backgrounds and were recognized for their talents in workers’ clubs and local talent competitions. The Carry On films sold a lewd marine postcard while scathingly criticizing the claims of British professionals (Carry On Doctor is a masterpiece of doctoral deflation).

“Fleabag” is to comedy what Coldplay is to music: a demonstration that another redoubt of the working class has been completely conquered by the professional class. Fleabag’s parents live in a huge house with a garden the size of a garden. Her sister is a high-ranking leader. While she’s a little weeded out, she’s weeded out in a way that only highly privileged people can be: she runs a (tediously goofy) coffee shop and comes to work when she wants to. This is how it should be. People should write about what they know, and Phoebe Waller-Bridge (pictured right), the author of the series, is a descendant of baronets and a product of St. Augustine’s Priory, a posh Catholic school. But this is yet another example of British social closure as a tiny elite take over more and more areas of British life and then congratulate themselves on how brilliantly they break the rules.

The popular explanation for this great social insularity is that it is stuck in it: a tiny clique of heavily connected metropolitan liberals seize control of the machinery of cultural production and then toss a few trinkets to select minorities to convince everyone (including themselves) that Britain is still is a society of opportunity. But I fear the explanation may be darker: as the working class shrinks and loses its cultural self-confidence, working-class institutions such as workers’ clubs are dying. The modern day equivalents of Les Dawson or the Carry On Team have nowhere to learn their craft, while the Phoebe Waller-Bridges of this world drift from independent schools to the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art, convinced they are upending social conventions and attitudes. world on the right.


PEOPLE are finally starting to take seriously the possibility of a government led by Jeremy Corbyn, leader of the Labor Party. Mr Corbyn’s impressive performance in the last general election in 2017 was largely written off as a protest vote: Part of the rest of England voted for Mr Corbyn precisely because they thought he had no hope of a real victory. Now that the Conservative Party is determined to destroy itself and the Brexit-related unrest is on the rise, people are seriously concerned.

Companies are calculating exactly what a far-left government will mean and are preparing to act accordingly. Foreign powers are starting to think seriously about what they would do if Britain were led by a man whose basic foreign policy principle is: “Whatever America does, I’m against it.” Israelis are terrified at the prospect of a British prime minister who supported Hamas, a militant Islamist group in Palestine, and pandered to anti-Semites within his party. I suspect that fear of a government led by Corbyn will soon become a major force in British politics – and not just a vague theoretical fear, but a real and living fear. People want to move. Money wants to run. Foreign powers will prepare for the worst.


The BRITISH political system is almost perfectly set up to make leaving the European Union (EU) a mess. The system is hostile: the ruling party confronts the opposition across a yawning chasm, and politicians yell at each other. But leaving the EU requires a series of difficult compromises in the middle. The system is also designed to solve the problem and move on to something else: each side expresses its position, the parliament is divided, and then you move on. But leaving the EU requires, above all, perseverance: you have to deal with the same problem week after week. It’s like cutting down a tree with a hammer. This structural problem will only get worse when (and if) Parliament moves from a withdrawal agreement to the more laborious task of shaping our future trade relationship with the EU.

Kenneth Clarke, who is surprisingly good at balancing his dual roles as Tory grandee and regular guy, recently gave a lengthy interview with The New York Times magazine. guardians in which he said that every Tuesday night he went to the Kennington Tandoori by himself to have a curry and read a copy Economist. My colleague dined in that same Tandoori last Tuesday. Indeed, Mr. Clark was sitting alone on the windowsill, diligently going through his copy of Economist. When he left, his place was taken by Ann Widdecombe, a former colleague of Clark’s who had just left the Tory to join Nigel Farage’s Brexit Party. My colleague cannot be entirely sure, but he does not think that Miss Widdecombe read Economist.

Image Credits: REX/Shutterstock/BBC

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Middle Ages accused of illegal destruction of trade unions



The regional director of the National Labor Relations Board applied complaint On Tuesday, Medieval Times management is accused of an illegal scheme to undermine union support at a castle in Buena Park, California.

Last year, workers at the castle launched a union campaign to improve pay and working conditions by collecting signed union tickets from showrunners, knight riders and grooms. A petition was later circulated in which some of the workers who had signed the union cards requested that they be withdrawn.

The complaint alleges that the theater chain’s training and development director played a direct role in these efforts to torpedo the union by offering guidance on the petition and encouraging workers to withdraw their support.

Workers can ask to have their union cards revoked if they change their mind, but it is illegal for management to be involved in such actions because it could lead to coercion.

“We’ve had to deal with months of near-constant union busting from the Medieval Times.”

– Erin Zapcic, Queen of Buena Park Castle

The union, the Entertainers Guild of America (AGVA), filed a lawsuit with the NLRB accusing the Medieval Times of violating the law through the petition. The complaint, released on Tuesday, means that NLRB officials have looked into the union’s claims and found them to be valid. If Medieval Times refuses to reach an agreement on a case, it will go to court.

The AGVA won the election anyway, 27 to 18, making the supposedly illegal petition campaign moot. But regional director Nathan M. Seidman said the Medieval Times should admit it had broken the law and post a workers’ rights notice in Buena Park Castle, as well as read it aloud to the workers.

Erin Zapcic, a cast queen and union member, said in a statement that the workers were “delighted” that the board had filed a complaint against the company.

“During our organizing campaign, we had to face months of near-constant union busting from the Medieval Times,” Zapcic said. “The most egregious thing is that the company orchestrated an attempt to completely cancel our elections through deceit, manipulation and illegal means.”

Medieval knight Brandon Sanchez at the picket line in Buena Park, California.

Orange County Registry via Getty Images

Zapcic called Tuesday’s filing “the first of many complaints against the company,” noting that the union has blamed Medieval Times for other unfair labor practices that are under investigation.

Medieval Times did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

California Castle was the company’s second to form a union, after an earlier campaign at a castle in Lyndhurst, New Jersey. Workers at both factories are now trying to secure their first contract. Trade unions include castle artists and grooms, but not food and retail workers.

The cast of the show Buena Park and the Knights have gone on an unfair strike since February, accusing the Medieval Times of trying to silence them on social media. The company brought in workers to replace them – strikebreakers, in the language of the union – from other castles. According to the union, some of the new knights from the company’s castle in Toronto were turned down by US immigration because they did not have work visas.

Last year, the company filed a trademark infringement lawsuit against AGVA over the name the workers chose for their union, Medieval Times Performers United, and the Medieval-style image of their logo. The company said the name and images of the union created confusion among customers and compromised its brand.

The company later filed intellectual property complaints on Facebook and TikTok and secured the shutdown of the California Castle union’s TikTok account. In response, the union filed new allegations of unfair labor practices against the company, saying the trademark lawsuit and social media complaints are illegal attempts to silence them.

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Echoes of history in a new national campaign to protect children online



Growing concerns about the mental health of young people have prompted state legislatures across the country to propose a range of age limits to protect minors online. Lawmakers say the rules should help keep young people safe from online pornography, predators and harmful social media posts.

The current push for age restrictions on certain online content echoes a similar legal requirement three decades ago, when the internet was in its infancy. In 1996, Congress passed a major telecommunications law making it illegal to knowingly send or display “obscene or obscene” material to anyone under the age of 18.

This law had a longstanding precedent: federal regulations, go back to the 1920s which forbade radio and television broadcasts from broadcasting obscene language so that a child wandering into the living room would not hear it.

Rules against pornography in the 1990s strong bipartisan support. But civil liberties groups believed that online obscenity bans violated the First Amendment and stifled free speech. Among other objections, they stated that it was too difficult and expensive for websites to verify a visitor’s age. This could have resulted in sites simply getting rid of anything that was not suitable for children, creating a Disney-style internet.

To protect Americans’ access to information that could potentially be considered obscene under the new law, such as educational materials about AIDS, the American Civil Liberties Union sued the government, challenging part law the so-called Communications Decency Act.

The ACLU wanted his name to appear in the lawsuit, said Chris Hansen, former senior group lawyer. But to be a plaintiff, the group had to be directly threatened with the law, and there was nothing on its website that could potentially “harm” children. So the ACLU loaded Supreme Court ruling about comedian George Carlin’s riff on the seven dirtiest words in the English language, which included a transcript of Mr. Carlin’s monologue in all his unspiced glory.

The ACLU also hosted a quiz that asked readers to guess seven obscenities.

After a federal court in Philadelphia temporarily suspended the law, the government filed an appeal, and Reno v. The ACLU, named after Bill Clinton’s Attorney General Janet Reno, was reviewed by the Supreme Court, where it argued that restrictions on free speech provided by law could limit the unique potential of the Internet and deprive people, including minors, of access to all kinds of information. information.

The American Civil Liberties Union argued that the Internet, where users typed or clicked to get to a web page, was more like a book or newspaper than radio or television. Ann Beesonformer assistant legal director of the group. Language in printed materials, which people freely viewed, was more easily regulated than in broadcast media, where the audience had less control over what they were exposed to.

The judges at that time were not particularly familiar with the Internet. So the court staged a demonstration for employees to show how easy it is to find pornography. Senator Ted Cruz, then Clerk of the Supreme Court, later told how he, along with Judge Sandra Day O’Connor, reviewed “tough, explicit” search results for images of fruit, sometimes used as an obscene euphemism for breasts.

Ultimately, the Supreme Court sided with the ACLU, holding that federal restrictions could limit free speech.

The judges said general restrictions were unacceptable because soon parents would be able to use content filtering software to protect their children, and age verification systems at the time, which typically included checking a user’s credit card, were not yet widely available.. (This has changed; today, many modern online age verification systems use credentials, such as a driver’s license, to verify a user’s age. One vendor said they are now easy to integrate and cost as little as 10 cents per visitor.)

In its ruling, the Supreme Court upheld the long-standing principle of American law that “you may not censor the speech of adults in the name of protecting minors.” Hansen said. If the ACLU had lost, “The Internet wouldn’t be what it is now.”

But that was before the current, “extremely online” era, when critics say powerful social media algorithms have fueled the spread of hateful and divisive comments; massive disinformation; and encouraged young girls to post about anorexia and self-mutilation.

To try and increase online safety for kids, California passed the Age Appropriate Design Code Act last year. The legislation requires online services that are likely to be used by young people, such as social media and video game platforms, to default to the highest privacy settings possible for minors.

It will also require these services to disable by default features that may pose a risk to minors, such as buddy finder, which can allow adult strangers to contact children.

Technology industry association NetChoice has filed a lawsuit to block child protection from coming into effect next year. In a lawsuit filed in December, NetChoice said the restrictions would stifle important resources for users of all ages, echoing arguments made by the ACLU in the 1990s.

In March, the Congressional Research Service, the public policy institute that serves Congress, also gave its opinion. urging legislators consider the possible unintended consequences of new age restrictions on the Internet, such as companies collecting more user data and restricting content.

Despite this, legislators continue to propose new rules for age and content on the Internet.

Last week in the Senate, Brian Schatz, a Hawaiian Democrat, pledged that his new Child Online Protection Bill “will help us stop the growing health crisis of children on social media by setting a minimum age.”

Audio produced Jack D’Isidoro.

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