by Lindsay Beyerstein
How our blog got its name
Sidney Hillman was a powerful national figure during the Great Depression, a key supporter of the New Deal, and a close ally of President Franklin D. Roosevelt.
When the rumor spread that President Roosevelt ordered his party leaders to “clear it with Sidney” before announcing Harry S. Truman as his 1944 running mate, conservative critics turned on the phrase, trumpeting it as proof that the president was under the thumb of “Big Labor.”
Over the years, the phrase lost its sting and became a testament to Hillman's influence.
It's hard to imagine a labor leader wielding that kind clout today, but we like the idea—and we hope Sidney would give thumbs up to our blog.
#Sidney's Picks: Get the Lead Out; Paid Sick Days; Bad Medicine
- Millions of Americans are drinking water laced with dangerous levels of lead, Sheila Kaplan and Corbin Hiar report for the Investigative Workshop/nbcnews.com.
- A for-profit hospital chain performed lucrative but potentially life-threatening cardiac procedures on patients who didn't even need them, Reed Abelson and Julie Creswell report in the New York Times.
- Changes are afoot at the Susan G. Komen Foundation, the breast cancer behemoth that fired an early salvo in the War on Women by cutting off funding for Planned Parenthood's breast cancer screening programs. Komen restored the grants, but the damage was done. Amanda Marcotte of Slate explains why the demotion of Komen's CEO and the departure of its president are unlikely to restore the organization's reputation.
- Over 1 million workers in New York City have no paid sick leave, Erica Eichelberger reports for Mother Jones. That could change under a proposed law that would give most New Yorkers at least 5 days of paid leave. See how the U.S. stacks up against 160 other nations in terms of paid sick leave.
[Photo credit: WanderMule, Creative Commons.]