|Last week, amidst a deluge of criticism about Walmart's poverty-level wages, the retail giant announced promotions for 25,000 of its roughly 1.3 million US employees. But although Walmart has raised pay for some of its employees, it is simultaneously fighting to convince the Supreme Court to allow it to more easily avoid paying disability benefits.
Last month, the Supreme Court heard arguments in Heimeshoff v. Hartford Life & Accident Insurance Co. and Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., a case brought by Julie Heimeshoff, a Walmart employee who sued the company and its insurance provider in 2010 for refusing to pay her disability benefits. Heimeshoff worked at Walmart for nearly 20 years, most recently as a public relations manager. About 10 years ago, she was diagnosed with fibromyalgia, lupus, and other chronic pain problems, and in June 2005, the pain became so severe that she had to stop working. Heimeshoff applied for disability benefits and, after a long internal review, her claim was denied. She sued over the denial of benefits less than three years later. That was within the statute of limitations—or so she thought.
When Heimeshoff started working for Walmart, she signed a contract saying that if she were ever denied disability benefits, she could only sue the company for wrongful denial of benefits if she did so within three years of filing her disability claim. But the US government and consumer lawyers say that Walmart's contract is bunk, because established law stipulates that the clock doesn't start ticking on those three years until an employee's claim for benefits is improperly denied. A ruling in Walmart's favor could make it more difficult for millions of workers—not just people who work for Walmart—to obtain disability benefits. [...]
Blast from the Past. At Daily Kos on this date in 2011—Rick Santorum explains God's role in American law:
|No, when Rick Santorum is speaking about "God's law" and how it supersedes the laws of the country, he is referring to "God's law" as he himself defines it. That is what Santorum wishes to enshrine into American governance. He quite literally presumes to be speaking for God, when he goes on about how this or that law needs to be changed to comport with God's law, but where other religious figures might simply say that those that believe different interpretations of God's law are going to hell, Santorum and others demand that those that belief different interpretations of God's law be identified as criminals.
Do you believe life "begins at conception?" Rick Santorum does, and so, he asserts, American law must comport entirely to his interpretation, not yours. Do you believe homosexuality is a sin? Rick Santorum does, and so he demands the laws of the nation be written to properly punish those that believe otherwise.
We're in classic mode once again for today's Kagro in the Morning show, with a pre-2012 election/post-Sandy episode, featuring polling & punditry roundups with a storm-impacted Greg Dworkin. We discussed Chris Christie's cooperation with President Obama, the strange-sounding-but-explainable call of "toss-up" for OH, the punditry's ongoing love affair with "The Narrative," and Republicans' clinging to "The Math." But is "The Math" really just code for "we're cheating"? Plus, more on the astonishing idiocy of attacks on Nate Silver, and Dick Morris has finally written The Dumbest Thing Ever.