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: Video Shows Fatal Tasing by Border Patrol
- Need to Know and the Investigative Fund of the Nation Institute have obtained explosive video that casts doubt on the U.S. Border Patrol's claims about the death of a 42-year-old migrant at the hands of Border Patrol agents. According to the official story, the father of five was Tased while he combative and out of control, but the video shows that he was tased after he was already handcuffed and immobilized on the ground. The preview segment, above, has already racked up nearly 80,000 hits on YouTube. The full program will air on PBS tonight. [HT: Talking Points Memo]
- Be sure to check out USA Today's sweeping investigation of lead poisoning in children whose homes were built near long-shuttered lead smelters, which contaminate the soil to this day. The EPA knew the risks, but largely failed to act, or even to warn the residents.
- The Pineapple and The Hare: Bizarre questions from the New York State English exam.