Ever wonder how Jack DeCoster, Maine's infamous egg magnate, has gotten away with it after all these years? One reason is that regardless of what he does -- triggers the largest egg recall in history, gets investigated for cruelty to his birds, gets fined for virtually imprisoning his Latino workers, falsifies trucking records, leaves mounds of dead chickens out in the open and won't bury them until sued -- he always seems to find friends willing to help him out.
Case in point: this week Maine legislators are considering a bill to do DeCoster a favor by depriving his workers of the minimum wage, overtime, and collective bargaining rights. Read the whats, whos, and whys in my piece in the new Portland Phoenix, which dropped today. (Also, check out Steve Mistler's earlier Sun Journal coverage of the bill's hearing.)
And, for your moment of Zen, here's a recent video of Gov. Paul LePage telling a conference of homeschoolers that he favors teaching creationism in Maine's public schools because "knowledge is power."
[Update, 5/29/2011, 16:00: In a nail-biter, the committee voted against the bill 7-6, with one Republican defecting from the DeCoster camp. The bill will likely be voted on by the full house.]
[Update, 5/29/2011, 16:50: In a bizarre twist, the committee revoted, passing the measure 7-6. Rep. Fred Wintle (R-Garland) -- who told reporters just hours earlier "I support collective bargaining rights" -- changed his position. 5/30/2011: The details on that.]
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