06 September 2010

Labour Day in the US + some photos

(American) Labour Day’s an interesting time in Pittsburgh, that’s for sure. The buses are infrequent this weekend – certainly understandable, but it meant yesterday that I missed church and the first hour of WMA / heavy weapons practice. It should be noted that I don’t object to being grounded as much on a Monday.

Just in time for ALD, though, came a report from the Freedom House on labour rights in the countries of the world. The United States comes in as a ‘Mostly Free’ country with regard to labour rights (lagging somewhat behind most of the countries of the European Union, Norway, Switzerland, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and South Korea), but the report makes note of the substantial and alarming weakened state of American trade unions (from 35% of employed labourers to below 8% over the past 50 years), the steady judicial erosion of collective bargaining rights, the measures taken against managers who violate labour laws which amount to little more than slaps on the wrist, and the public hostility toward any manifestation of labour activism or civil organisation. As an industrialised society with great power and wealth, more ought to be expected of us in both generosity and in concern for the common good, particularly as we run up against problems of resource scarcity in a rising multipolar era.

I wasn’t able to get out and take a great number of photographs, but here are some that may be of interest within my own neighbourhood:

The house I live in, currently. Overall a fairly nice place.

The five-way intersection at Liberty and Baum where I catch my bus most often. Note the Cathedral of Learning in the distance in the first photo, as well as the no-pedestrian-crossing sign which is conveniently ignored by drivers and pedestrians alike.

The centre of Morrow Triangle, with a monument to those who lost their lives in the Second World War.

The First United Methodist Church on Centre Ave and S Aiken Ave. Not the best example of the sooty patina on old buildings, but you can tell the stones used to be a lighter colour, particularly on the tower and beneath the windows. Oh yes, and they do spell ‘Centre Ave’ correctly. Just one of the things I love about this place!

See; wouldn’t lie to you!

Some better examples of the Pittsburgh patina effect: Evaline Lutheran Church (top) and another house on my block (bottom). Evaline Church in particular is quite striking; makes it look quite ancient, in fact.

And here’s a modest example of the terrain in Pittsburgh. I’m taking this shot from the top of a slight incline (Penn Ave), looking downhill and then up toward the cemetery.

That's all the photos I have for now; I’m sure I’ll be back with more soon!

No comments:

Post a Comment