Archive for March, 2010

Mining safety: not just for China

Tuesday, March 30th, 2010

When the whistle blows each morning
And I walk down in this cold dark mine,
I say a prayer to my dear savior
Please let me see the sunshine one more day. A Miner’s Prayer

Our Google alert for safety today turned up the tragic story of 153 Chinese mine workers trapped underground in a flooded mine. China is a country that sees an annual miner death toll in the thousands:

“China’s mining industry is the world’s deadliest. Accidents killed “only” 2,631 coal miners last year, fewer than half the 6,995 deaths in 2002. However, many analysts doubt that the figures reflect reality, believing instead that many deaths simply go unreported.”

Here in the US, some retired miners might recall a day when our coal mining fatalities were up in the quadruple digits. We experienced more than one thousand annual coal mining fatalities through 1947. It wasn’t until after 1985 that fatalities dropped consistently from triple to double digits. Our worst disaster occurred in 1907, when 362 boys and men died in West Virginia’s Monongah Mine disaster after an underground explosion. In fact, the plethora of mining disasters with hundreds of fatalities were a backdrop leading to the establishment of better worker protections, including a workers compensation system. One can only hope the public will call for increasing safety and reforms in China mines.
For more on this story, we went to the best and most knowledgeable mining media source we know and it did not disappoint: Ken Ward’s Coal Tattoo has the latest coverage of the China tragedy, including an update which notes that warnings were ignored before mine flood. Ken reports on mining for the Charlotte Gazette. He and the people of West Virginia know quite a bit about mine disasters. Earlier this year, Ken reported that the nation experienced a record low in mining deaths last year – 34 – but he asks if that is enough. Good question. A little over a week ago, Ward reported that fewer than 1 in 10 U.S. mines have added improved communications and tracking equipment that could help miners escape an explosion or fire – a requirement after the MINER Act, a law that was prompted by a series of mining fatalities in 2006, including the Sago mine disaster.
Our sympathy goes out to the families of the China miners, who are suffering through a terrible vigil, the way so many other miners’ families have suffered. We can only hope that tragedy will serve as a catalyst to better safety advancements in China. And despite the progress we’ve made here in the U.S. over the years, we see by the recent report about the lackadaisical measures taken to protect our own miners, our memories are short.

Prior posts on mining
Cold comfort: Crandall Canyon survivors and workers comp
A bad way to make a living – links to interesting historical exhibits on mining
The sad, quiet death of Bud Morris – father, husband, motorcycle aficionado
The feds and Phantom Miners
Sago mining disaster and workers comp: newly formed insurer to pay benefits
Sago mining deaths: a sorry way to begin the new year

Performance Dis-incentive Programs

Monday, March 29th, 2010

Performance incentive programs are a good idea – except when they aren’t. The Insider has always viewed such programs with ambivalence: yes, it’s a good idea to reward employees for safe performance over a given time period. The problem is that these programs can discourage employees from reporting legitimate injuries. And the employee who does report an injury – the guy or gal who breaks the string of injury-free days – may incur the resentment of fellow workers. “You blew the pizza and the draw for a TV because you cut your hand!” It can be yet another form of the great American tradition, blaming the victim.
Then there are the rogue performance incentive programs, where non-reporting of injuries is embedded in the work culture. Which brings us to California. (Is it my imagination, or does every conceivable scam bring us to California?)
At the Smurfit-Stone Container Corporation, the performance incentive program rewarded managers for not reporting workers comp claims. The company’s motto is “solving it from all sides” – and it appears that one of the sides is, well, illegal.
David Polk, 53, and Douglas Tateoka, 61, pleaded no contest Wednesday to charges of concealing events related to on-the-job injuries and conspiring to deny injured workers their benefits. The two are scheduled for sentencing May 20 in Monterey County Superior Court.
Employees were discouraged from reporting workers comp claims. When injured, they were treated outside of the comp system: the employer took care of the medical bills. It’s not clear whether any attempt was made to pay indemnity for lost time. I doubt it.
As is usual and customary in California, doctors figured out a way to make a few bucks in the scam: in this case, Steven Davis of Davis Chiropractic, who once worked for Surfit-Stone as a human relations manager, and Eugene Guzman, a physician’s assistant at Pinnacle Urgent Care. Both are facing charges in the fraud.
Whose Incentive?
Any performance incentive program that focuses exclusively on managers is immediately suspect: a legitimate program rewards workers first, then managers, for good safety performance.
Performance incentive programs have a positive role in many workplaces, but it’s crucial to align the incentives with the realities of the workplace. These programs should celebrate safe performance without penalizing or ostracizing employees who suffer injuries on the job. Beyond that, performance incentives must never trump employee rights under workers comp laws. It’s one thing to reward safe performance; it’s quite another to stifle claims reporting and the awarding of statutory benefits.
Managers at box manufacturer Smurfit-Stone tried thinking out of the box to lower their comp costs. Now they are on their way to a concrete box with bars on the windows. They are about to participate in a very effective performance disincentive program, one that most of us try diligently to avoid.

Pilot with a Death Wish

Friday, March 26th, 2010

Bryan Griffin was a pilot for Australia’s Qantas Air from 1966 to 1982. In 1979 he began to have “uncontrollable urges” to switch off the engines in mid-flight in order to bring down the airplane. He would leave the flight deck and smoke a few cigarettes until he calmed down. He made no attempt to hide his problem – he talked to his colleagues about it. Qantas had him examined and treated by several doctors, but the problems continued, including the urge to “scream and cry.” He routinely ignored instructions and repeatedly missed radio and altitude calls. On a flight from Singapore to Sydney, he felt his hand “being abused by the uncontrollable pull of the start levers” – which, if pulled, would kill the engines.
OK. Not exactly “pilot of the month” stuff. There are a couple of intriguing aspects to this tale.
First, Qantas made the management decision to keep Griffin on the job. While the Insider normally recommends following a “return to work/stay at work” protocol, in this case, “staying at work” for three years with severe mental illness clearly put far too many people at risk. Griffin was incapable of performing his job safely; he should have been put on indefinite leave until his mental state stabilized beyond any reasonable doubt.
Griffin continued to fly until he retired in 1982 with a diagnosis of anxiety, depression and obsessive compulsive disorder.
Indemnity for Working?
Here is the second unusual aspect to this case: Nearly 30 years after his retirement, Griffin has been awarded $208,000 by an industrial compensation commission, which ruled that his mental problems were exacerbated by his continuing to work. The Workers Compensation Commission found that the pilot’s condition had been worsened by continuing to fly for Qantas until his 1982 retirement. The financial award covers “loss of earnings, medical expenses and legal costs.”
While I am no expert in the intricacies of comp as it operates down under, I am confused by this award. How can you suffer a “loss of earnings” when you continue to work? How does workers comp indemnity come to play in a situation where there was no lost time? Perhaps the commission assumes that if Griffin had been grounded during his prolonged period of mental disability, he eventually would have been cured and then would have been to continue his career with Qantas beyond 1982. In other words, Griffin’s premature retirement was caused by making him work while he was suicidal. If that is the reasoning, it’s a bit of a stretch.
I have one additional question for the commission: why did it take nearly 30 years to reach this conclusion?
Qantas is considering an appeal on this ruling. I think they should shut up and cut the check. Any additional proceedings might further expose their amazingly reckless decision to keep Griffin in the cockpit. That is negligent entrustment at its very worst. Ironically, had Griffin succumbed to his demons and crashed the plane, we might never have known the real cause of the accident. As it is, Qantas is lucky that both Griffin and his hundreds of passengers survived. Air travel is stressful enough without having to worry about a pilot with a barely controllable urge to crash the plane.

Cavalcade of Risk #101; vote for best student safety video

Thursday, March 25th, 2010

Cavalcade of Risk #101 – Andrew of Ozrisk hosts this week’s edition of Cavalcade of Risk – check it out.
In other news this week, Roberto Ceniceros posts about making safety more fun than a workplace prank – a video contest sponsored by the Oregon Young Worker Health & Safety Coalition. The Coalition launched its second annual “Save a friend. Work safe” video contest, which invited Oregon high school students to submit a 45-second video about young worker safety on the job. Entries are competing for prizes ranging from $300 to $500, with matching amounts for each winner’s school. There were 50 entries this year, from which 7 finalists were chosen. Help pick the winner – log in to YouTube and view and rate the 7 finalists.
We’re all for creative ways to raise the issue of workplace safety with young workers. Also see Oregon’s Young Employee Safety page – O[yes]. The mission of O[yes] is “…to prevent young worker injuries and fatalities. O[yes] educates its constituency of young workers, educators, employers, parents and labor and trade associations through outreach, advocacy and sharing of resources. We pool our expertise, leverage resources and recognize the diversity and knowledge of our partners and the voice of young workers. O[yes] asserts that all injuries are preventable, all workers have a right to safe work and that young workers shall be treated respectfully and fairly.”

Health Reform Roundup

Wednesday, March 24th, 2010

We’ve compiled a variety of resources on the health care reform developments this week:
First stop, see Joe Paduda’s excellent analysis of Health Reform’s implications for workers’ comp, part 1, part 2 and part 3. Joe’s expertise in the inner workings of the medical side of workers comp make this a must-read.
In the National Underwriter, Arthur D. Postal gets insurer reactions to bill passage: Insurers Decry Health Bill for Lack of Cost Restrictions
Insurance Journal looks at the various suits filed by 12 state Attorneys General which challenge the constitutionality of reform: How States Are Responding to Healthcare Reform Law and Republican Attorneys General Pursue Sovereignty Claim Against Health Bill
Law Professor Mark D. Hall, J.D. offers his thoughts on the constitutionality of mandating health insurance at The Health Care Blog.
At the Washington Post, Ezra Klein explains how the exchanges work. Also see How big is the bill, really?
Jaan Sidorov at Disease Care Management Blog Has a multi-part post focusing on What the Health Reform Bill Says About Prevention, part 2
Tinker Ready does a local roundup over at Boston Health News: Health reform: How’s it playing in Mass?
At Healthcare Economist, Jason Shafrin samples the international reaction.
At Gooznews, Merrill Goozner talks about the the reinvention of social progress and notes the Physician Payments Sunshine Act, which requires more transparency about payments that drug and device companies make to doctors.
For employers, Anne Freedman of Human Resource Executive suggests that uncertainty reigns. While most changes for employers won’t be in effect until 2014 to 2018, she outlines some changes that go into effect this year.
Consumer Corner
The New York Times Prescription blog answers reader questions on the Health Care overhaul
At Kaiser Health News, Phil Galewitz offers a Consumers Guide to Health Reform. Kate Steadman and Julie Appleby talk about the immediate effects of the Health Reform Bill.
The Washington Post offers a cost calculator to help consumers learn the impact on their situation: What does the health care bill mean to me?
Specifics about the legislation – from House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s page
U.S.A. Today looks at how health care overhaul affects taxpayers.

Maine’s Fee Schedule: Down the Rabbit Hole

Tuesday, March 23rd, 2010

Three months ago we blogged the ongoing agony of Bath Iron Works (BIW), the people who build destroyers for the navy. You may recall that BIW self insures for workers comp, and as such must pay the “usual and customary” fees for medical services provided to injured workers. There are only two categories of payers who are stuck with usual and customary fees: self insureds and uninsureds. BIW has been waiting 18 years for Maine to come up with a fee schedule. Eighteen years! The Board in charge of developing the fee schedule is asking for…a little more time.
So what’s the problem? Paul Dionne, the Chairman of the Maine Workers Comp Board – the board responsible for developing the fee schedule – is also board chairman of Central Maine Healthcare Corporation – which stands to lose a lot of money once the fee schedule is implemented. Dionne is compensated by the comp board and by Central Maine Healthcare. If he were really candid, he might admit that his idea of a fee schedule is “usual and customary” fees. Dionne claims they are really getting close to the point where they will be able to issue a draft fee schedule for public comment.
Timely Remedies?
As reported by Lindsay Tice in the Lewiston Sun Journal, BIW has filed suit, claiming that Dionne has a conflict of interest. This is their second lawsuit. Back in 2006 they sued the board for its (then) 14 year failure to implement a fee schedule. The judge sided with BIW and ordered the board to create the fee schedule. Four years later…well, you get the drift (and I do mean drift!).
Dionne has consulted with an attorney, who advised him that there was a “potential” for a conflict of interest. (Brilliant work, counsel!) Dionne is seeking a second opinion from the board’s general counsel. Here’s a second opinion: it’s a conflict of interest!!!
Dionne claims that, if necessary, he will fully disclose his personal interests, as he has done in the past. Sure, Paul. The foxes are promising better management of the chicken coop. Foxes love chickens. They are very committed to raising the “usual and customary” chickens, fat and healthy.
Start Over?
The sheer passage of time, now approaching two full decades, has compromised the Maine fee schedule beyond recognition. It has become an embarassment. It’s unlikely that any fee schedule issued by this board will be credible. Perhaps it’s time to create a truly independent body to develop the fee schedule. The bad news for BIW is that this would further delay the regulatory relief they have long sought. The good news is that the fee schedule might actually lower the fees.
During this prolonged process, BIW has tumbled down the rabbit hole, Maine version, into a world where nothing is quite what it seems. BIW – in the unlikely role of Alice, meets a cheshire cat, with a grin like Paul Dionne’s:

`Cheshire Puss, …Would you tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here?’
`That depends a good deal on where you want to get to,’ said the Cat.
`I don’t much care where–‘ said Alice.
`Then it doesn’t matter which way you go,’ said the Cat.
`–so long as I get SOMEWHERE,’ Alice added as an explanation.
`Oh, you’re sure to do that,’ said the Cat, `if you only walk long enough.’

New York Weighs In on Obesity

Monday, March 22nd, 2010

Last August we blogged the case of Adam Childers, a morbidly obese pizza maker in Indiana who suffered a back injury. Childers’s weight was in itself a substantial obstacle to his getting better, so the court ordered the comp carrier to pay for gastric by-pass surgery. Now we find a similar case in New York, where the state supreme court requires the state fund to pay for by-pass surgery.
Salvatore Laezzo, an employee of the state Turnpike Authority, slipped and fell at work back in 2002. He suffered injuries to his head, neck, back and knees. While we might assume that Laezzo had some weight issues at the time of the injury, in the subsequent years of relative inactivity his weight increased dramatically. There was substantial evidence that Laezzo’s weight gain was caused by his work injury. In effect, the New York court has set a somewhat narrower standard for compensability than the court in Indiana: had Laezzo been morbidly obese prior to the injury, the court might have ruled for the carrier.
Seeds of Compensability
New York has some interesting and rather expansive notions of compensability in workers comp. The current ruling cites a precedent involving Stephen Spyhalsky, a construction worker [Spyhalsky v. Cross Construction N.Y.S.2d 212). The court ordered the comp carrier to pay for artificial insemination of Spyhalsky’s wife, after back surgery compromised the route taken by his sperm. This unusual definition of compensability leads directly to another intriguing issue: had Spyhalsky been permanently disabled, would the comp carrier be required to pay dependency benefits for the resulting child? In all likelihood, yes.
NOTE: We blogged a somewhat similar situation in Arkansas, where the wife of a deceased claimant was artificially inseminated with his frozen sperm. After a rather complex deliberation, the court rejected her claim for additional dependency benefits.)
When in Doubt, Leave Them Out?
While the logic for including gastric by-pass surgery under workers comp is certainly understandable, there is a strong potential for unintended consequences: obese job applicants, who already face myriad problems in finding employment, may encounter even more discrimination. These well-publicized court rulings place the burden of gastric by-pass surgery directly on comp insurers and employers. The latter may shy away from hiring qualified obese applicants. After all, the obese are at greater risk for injury and, once injured, their weight becomes a substantial obstacle to returning to productive employment.
It would be nice to think that the pending expansion of healthcare benefits to nearly all Americans might make this cost-shifting problem go away. Alas, the game of “pin the tail on the payer” has only just begun.

Walmart: Shopping for Souls in Aisle Three

Friday, March 19th, 2010

Joseph Casias was the Associate of the Year in 2008 for the Walmart in Battle Creek, Michigan. He achieved this despite his ongoing struggle with sinus cancer and an inoperable brain tumor. During his five years with the organization, the 29 year old Casias went to work every day determined to be the best. To help manage the pain that accompanied his challenging illness, his doctor prescribed medical marijuana, which is legal in Michigan. Casias used the drug only at home and was never “high” when he reported for work. (See our recent post on medical marijuana here.)
Last November Casias sprained his knee at work. Walmart ran a routine drug screen following the injury. Unsurprisingly, Casias tested positive for marijuana. Despite the doctor’s prescription, Walmart terminated Casias for violation of the company drug policy. Despite the legality of Casias’s pot use, the company appears to be on firm ground: as with smokers in many states, companies are free to impose their own prohibitions on the use of otherwise legal products.
Casias collected unemployment insurance after his termination. Now it appears that Walmart has had second thoughts about that, too. They are contesting his UI eligibility, as he was terminated for cause. Casias has already been collecting UI for over three months, so he is likely nearing the end of the benefit. But when Walmart sees a penny on the floor, they will push old ladies aside to get it.
Company Speech, Company Soul
In a recent ruling, the U.S. Supreme Court determined that corporations have the same free speech rights as do individuals. Perhaps the court will be tempted to take it one step further and rule that corporations have souls.
One look at Walmart should convince them otherwise. In their typical tone-deaf manner, Walmart has acted within legal parameters; Casias was in technical violation of company drug policy, even though his drug use was medically necessary and presented no risk to the employee, co-workers or the public. Casias was an award-winning employee – but, I suspect, a drag on the company health plan. So Walmart seized the opportunity of a failed drug test to show Casias the door.
As usual, Walmart shoppers, there are plenty of specials today, but don’t bother looking in aisle three for remnants of compassion or a company soul .
Note: We have blogged Walmart’s compassion struggles many times. Just enter “Walmart” into the site search engine in the column to the right.

Health Wonk Review and other noteworthy news briefs

Thursday, March 18th, 2010

It’s Health Wonk review week, and Minna Jung serves up the March Madness of both the basketball court and the health care reform process in this week’s Health Wonk Review. Visit this week’s post at the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s blog The Users’ Guide to the Health Reform Galaxy.
Employer trends

  • Laura Petrecca of USA Today writes that employers are increasingly using technology to track and monitor employees. They do so for a variety of reasons, including monitoring to ensure productivity; to ensure that trade secrets are protected, and to ensure maintenance of professional and lawsuit-proof workplaces. Next month, the U.S. Supreme Court will hear a case that will explore privacy rights for employees when using employer-supplied devices. View some of the tech monitoring techniques that are being used.
  • NPR has been running a series on work-life balance and the increasing number of employers who are turning to flexible work schedules. You can read more about it at HR Web Cafe: Work-Life Balance and Flex Work.
  • Employee compensation costs – Private industry employers spent an average of $27.42 per hour worked for total employee compensation in December 2009 (PDF), according to a report issued last week by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Wages and salaries accounted for 70.8% of these costs, while benefits accounted for 29.2%. Of the benefits, 8.2% were for the cost of legally mandated benefits.

CT crackdown – Connecticut employers take note – Attorney General Richard Blumenthal is planning a crackdown on workers that are misclassified as independent contractors. “Among the commission’s recommendations: increase the penalty from $300 per violation to $300 a day per violation, strengthen criminal sanctions against misclassification and jointly investigate misclassification complaints with other state agencies.”
Immigrant workers – In light of a recent Iowa Supreme Court ruling in a case involving a nonresident alien, Roberto Ceniceros posts about immigrant workers and benefit complexities. To stay current on other related issues, we refer you to Peter Rousmaniere’s Working Immigrants.
Toxic chemicalsThe Environment News Service writes that the Obama administration is giving mixed signals on right-to-know for toxic chemicals. On the one hand, to increase transparency, the EPA is providing free web access to the Toxic Substances Control Act Chemical Substance Inventory. This is the first time that employers will have access to thousands of industrial chemicals in the agency’s database. But in a move that seems at odds with the administration’s stated commitment to transparency, OSHA is proposing a reduction in the hazard warning information that chemical manufacturers must provide to workers, customers and other users. OSHA denies that it is weakening protections, and according to the article, claims that it is “merely trying to conform with global labeling rules and that manufacturers often disagree with the cancer hazard evaluations and other advisory information.”
Medical marijuana – We suspect we’ll be seeing more stories like this: Walmart fires Michigan man for using medical marijuana.The store fired 2008 “Associate of the Year” Joseph Casias when he failed a drug test. Casias has sinus cancer and a brain tumor and has an authorized medical marijuana card. He uses marijuana to control pain at night, but claims that he is never under the influence at work. (See our past posts on this topic: The current buzz on medical marijuana and the workplace and One toke over the line.)
Kemper runoff – Hard to believe that it’s been six years, but the Kemper runoff saga is nearing conclusion, according to Business Insurance. Some call this “one of the most successful runoffs in history,” but not all agree. Some are waiting for liquidation to see if they will fare better than the reported 25 cents to 50 cents on the dollar that claims are being settled at:

“A decision to wait for liquidation or settle beforehand should depend on a cost benefit analysis that includes evaluating whether state guaranty funds for workers compensation claims are likely to pay for the majority of a policyholder’s claims, several experts said.

Workers comp claims account for the largest portion of Kemper’s outstanding liabilities, totaling about $600 million, Ms. Veed said.

But some states have net-worth exclusions, which eliminate guaranty fund coverage for companies above certain net worth levels, which range from $10 million to $50 million depending on the state, several sources said.”

Mother Jones: from County Cork to the Coal Mines

Wednesday, March 17th, 2010

“I’m not a humanitarian. I’m a hell-raiser”
Top of the morning to you this St. Patrick’s Day! We thought that the day might be a fitting time to commemorate the life of an Irish immigrant who was hailed as “the the grandmother of all agitators,” the “Miners’ Angel,” “labor’s Joan of Arc,” and “The Most Dangerous Woman in America.”
Mary Harris Jones, better known as Mother Jones, was an Irish immigrant who emerged as one of the most famous women in America. Today, her life is largely relegated to the dustbins of history – rather unfair, given her colorful life and the importance that she had to the labor movement. Born in County Cork, she and her family emigrated to Canada and then to the U.S. to escape the potato famine. She worked as a teacher and a seamstress and gave birth to four children. After losing her husband and children to yellow fever in 1867 and becoming dispossessed in 1871 by the great Chicago fire, she became a labor educator, organizer and tireless crusader for basic worker rights, for stopping the work exploitation of children, and for mine workers. She was also one of the founders of the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW), aka “the Wobblies.” There’s some dispute as to the date of her birth (she said 1830, others say 1837), but she lived to the age of either 93 or 100, an activist to the end of her days.
Biographer Dale Fetherling says of her:

” [she] was born . . . less than 50 years after the end of the American Revolution. Yet, she died on the eve of the New Deal. She was alive when Andrew Jackson was president, and she sometimes quoted from speeches she heard Lincoln make. As an adult she knew the Civil War, the Spanish-American War, and World War I. She rode in automobiles, and she saw the railroads link the oceans. She saw and was seen in films and came to know the everyday use of the telephone, the electric light, and the radio. She watched unions grow from secret groups of hunted men to what she feared was a complacent part of the established order…. It may have been a good time to live in America. But it also was a time in which one needed to fight very hard to survive. That she did.”

As an activist, she was highly effective – particularly in an era in which women’s voices were often muted. She was effective at harnessing the status of women in her organizing efforts:

“Mother Jones was notable for attracting publicity and attention from the government for the cause of workers. One of her best-known activities was leading a march of miners’ wives “who routed strikebreakers with brooms and mops in the Pennsylvania coalfields in 1902.” Another was leading the “children’s crusade,” a caravan of striking children from the textile mills of Kensington, Pennsylvania, to President Theodore Roosevelt’s home in Long Island, New York, in 1903, to dramatize the case for abolishing child labor.”

Biographer Elliott J. Gorn notes:

“Her fame began when, toward the end of the nineteenth century, she transformed herself from Mary Jones into Mother Jones. Her new persona was a complex one, infused with overtones of Christian martyrdom and with the suffering of Mother Mary. Perhaps it is best to think of Mother Jones as a character performed by Mary Jones. She exaggerated her age, wore old-fashioned black dresses, and alluded often to her impending demise. By 1900, she had stopped referring to herself as Mary altogether and signed all of her letters “Mother.” Soon laborers, union officials, even Presidents of the United States addressed her that way, and they became her “boys.”

The persona of Mother Jones freed Mary Jones. Most American women in the early twentieth century were expected to lead quiet, homebound lives for their families; few women found their way onto the public stage. Ironically, by making herself into the symbolic mother of the downtrodden, Mary Jones was able to go where she pleased and speak out on any issue that moved her. She defied social conventions and shattered the limits that confined her by embracing the very role that restricted most women.”

Canny as she was in creating her own highly effective persona, she eschewed any pretense to gentility: “No matter what the fight, don’t be ladylike! God almighty made women and the Rockefeller gang of thieves made the ladies.”
We can’t really do the woman full justice in this post – here’s a list of resources that are well worth exploring to learn more about the inimitable Mother Jones: