Thursday, November 5, 2015
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Stories are reviewed and provided by Northbay MDS Committees and Affiliates
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SOLANO PEACE, JUSTICE, AND FREEDOM COALITION
[SolanoPeaceJustice.blogspot.com], for justice, dignity and human rights, and an end to the USA's endless wars, in harmony with Principle 1 & 6 of International Law [archive.is/tmncz], the 5 protocols of the Convention on Conventional Weapons (CCW) [archive.is/LhUTj], and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights [archive.is/U1Ota].
* "The Ultimate War Crime: America’s 'Global War on Terrorism' ; The criminalization of war is the avenue to reaching World peace" (2015-11-01, by Prof. Michel Chossudovsky, globalresearch.ca) [archive.is/csM2Z]
* "Top army general calls Russia ‘#1 threat’ to US" (2015-11-03, rt.com) [archive.is/X7tAN]
* "'US Hegemonic Doctrine Demands Military Access to All Areas of the World' ; Russian naval forces present the US with a new challenge. That’s what US Admiral John Richardson said in an interview to the Financial Times on Sunday" (2015-11-03, sputniknews.com) [archive.is/zfjV6]
* "Russia's 'Global Ambitions': Pentagon Making Mountains Out of MolehillsThe Pentagon's warning that the Russian armed forces have accelerated activity around the globe might cause just a slight smile, expert in political and military affairs Brian Cloughley notes" (2015-11-03, sputniknews.com) [archive.is/c4s6h]
* "Russia to Counter $500 Billion Pentagon With $35 Bn; Military spending of expansionist Russia in 2016 will amount to some $35 billion - just 7% of that of the peace-loving United States; Note: due to ruble devaluation Russian military budget expressed in dollars is just half of what it was in recent years" (2015-11-02, TASS Newswire) [http://is.gd/rwjr0H], original [archive.is/EMTCr].
* Crazed US Senator Attacks Defense Secretary for not Planning War With Russia! [https://youtu.be/mC7Fz0d9H8M]
* "NATO exercise in 1983 sparked Soviet fears of nuke strike" (2015-10-26, AFP Newswire) [archive.is/DUPqk]
* "US 'Prompt Global Strike' Most Serious Obstacle in Reducing Nukes - Moscow; The conviction of the United States to fulfill its conception of the “Prompt Global Strike” to use ordinary high-precision long-distance arms to solve its strategic goals is an obstacle in reducing nuclear weapons arsenals, the director of the Russian Foreign Ministry’s Department of Non-proliferation, Disarmament, and Arms Control said Monday" (2015-10-12, sputniknews.com) [archive.is/AqAnH]
* "Conventional War With Great Power Nations 'Most Horrendous' Scenario; US Deputy Secretary of Defense Bob Work claims that conventional war with a large nation-state competitor is the riskiest scenario the United States would have to contend with" (sputniknews.com) [archive.is/8L35p]
* "U.S./Saudi wars cause devastation in Yemen and throughout the Middle East" (2015-07, nepajac.org) [archive.is/ZN3bm]
* "Tony Blair denies ordering burning of document ruling Iraq war illegal" (2015-11-02, rt.com) [archive.is/TRPcW] [begin excerpt]: Former Prime Minister Tony Blair has denied ordered the burning of documents drafted by Attorney General Lord Goldsmith which argued the Iraq war would be illegal weeks before the invasion began in 2003.
In a statement responding to allegations made on Sunday, Blair’s office said: “This is nonsense as far as Tony Blair knows.
“No one ever said that in his presence and in any event it would be quite absurd to think that anyone could destroy any such document.” [...]
The Mail on Sunday newspaper had reported that on the eve of the war Downing Street was gripped with panic as Britain’s top lawyer declared any such move illegal in a 13 page document.
An anonymous insider told the Mail that ministers and aides in possession of a copy of the document were told to “burn it. Destroy it.”
Ten days after the events are alleged to have taken place, Goldsmith u-turned on his original advice and declared the invasion legal.
Defence secretary Geoff Hoon is said to have been one of the ministers who refused to obey the burning command – a move which allegedly saw Blair trying to kick him out of cabinet. [end excerpt]
BAY AREA SOLIDARITY
Updates on campaigns for for Peace, Justice, & Freedom across the greater Bay Area, Norcal, and Socal
* #BlackPantherCubs Community Space [www.gofundme.com/blackpanthercubs]: This is just some of the work that Black Panther Party Cubs are doing, to educate, agitate and build the foundation of this Movement, through the Free Em All Radio. Please take the time to listen to clips from the Black Panther Party Cubs, Free Em All Radio program.
Please consider making a donation, every amount helps, to raise funds to establish a much needed community space and for day-to-day organizing. Free Em All!
* "Interview with Sacramento State student Chiitaanibah Johnson, Navajo/Maidu" (2015-10-27, by Francisco Dominguez and Dan Bacher, Indybay.or Newswire) [archive.is/HVTyg]
* "Calif. Tribes Sue Transportation Agencies Over Destruction of Sacred Sites; Tribes Call for Halt of Construction After Ancient Village Bulldozed in the Dead of Night" (2015-10-30, BACH) [archive.is/qKMpJ] [begin excerpt]: Northern California Native American Tribes filed a lawsuit today against the U.S. Dept. of Transportation (DOT), the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), individuals associated with those agencies, and the Director of the Calif. Dept. of Transportation (Caltrans) for allowing the destruction of archaeological sites, failure to address protocol for archeological sites and materials in a lawful manner, and failure to adequately consider alternatives in their highway construction project in Mendocino County--alternatives that would have both saved wetlands and protected Native American ancestral cultural and archaeological sites. [end excerpt]
* the Coyote Valley Band of Pomo Indians [facebook.com/CoyoteValleyTribe]
* the Round Valley Indian Tribes of California [rvit.org]
* See the Lawsuit Text and photos (.pdf) [http://is.gd/KtPq13]
* Justice for Yuvette Henderson! four photos (2015-10-29) [archive.is/l6HwJ] [archive.is/9h2j3] [archive.is/JEHUH]
* "Yuvette Henderson Federal Lawsuit Announced — Press Conference" (2015-10-30, by Anti Police-Terror Project) [archive.is/K3SAl]: On October 29 in front of the Oakland federal building, attorney Dan Siegel, Yuvette Henderson's family, and the Anti Police-Terror Project announced a new civil suit filed in federal court on Yuvette's behalf. On February 2, 2015 Yuvette Henderson — a mother of four and a grandmother — was killed by officers from the Emeryville Police department with an AR-15 military style assault weapon on the Oakland/Emeryville border. Since then the family and the community have worked tirelessly to expose contradictions of The State’s narrative — some of which the media has colluded with — and to achieve basic justice such as transparency with recorded evidence and the release of the autopsy report. In the interest of justice, the family and legal counsel are proceeding with legal action through the courts.
Further information, via Indybay.org Newswire:
* "OPD Bows to Pressure, Releasing Video Related to Killing of Yuvette Henderson" (2015-04-30)
* "Emeryville Home Depot Shut Down for Yuvette Henderson" (2015-02-24) [http://is.gd/tzsmR3]
* "Yuvette Henderson Gunned Down by Emeryville Police in Oakland" (2015-02-12 [http://is.gd/ulr6CT]
* "Calls for Removal of Salinas Police Chief Continue at Police Brutality Day Protest" (2015-10-30, by Alex Darocy, Indybay.org Newswire) [archive.is/L6xA2]
* [youtube.com/watch?v=gKLyX0iIIyg]: The family of Cary Ball, Jr. at the Rise Up October demonstration in NYC on 10/24/2015. Carey Ball was murdered by the St Louis police, April 24, 2013. He was shot 28 times with his hands up.
* The Police burned down Cary's Memorial [archive.is/IN0x2], video statement by family members [http://is.gd/nka9O0]:
* "We have rebuilt!! Know the mov enemy NEVER is still!! No Justice!! No Peace!!" (2015-11-03) [archive.is/h707Z], with Cary Ball Sr & Michael Brown Sr [archive.is/zRgjM]
* (2015-11-01) [archive.is/NE3AX]: Uhuru! This is what unity and leadership looks like! We demand justice and we demand Black Community Control of the Police!!!
* "Community Groups Challenge Utah Funding for Proposed Oakland Coal Export Terminal" (2015-11-02, by Center for Biological Diversity) [http://is.gd/WbTmEw]
BAY AREA SOLIDARITY: Updates on campaigns across the Nation!
* "RISE UP OCTOBER!" [https://youtu.be/Kb4aaRgDpfQ]: Over a thousand protesters gathered in Manhattan to march against police brutality on Saturday, October 24.
* "Marching for CPAC and Justice in Chicago August 29 a Huge Success" (2015-11-01, CCDS) [archive.is/YBjsw]: The people of Chicago achieved something yesterday that has never happened before. A multi-racial, multi-faith, inter-generational coalition led by Black people put thousands of people in the streets around City Hall demanding the creation of an all-elected, all-Civilian Police Accountability Council (CPAC).
One of the lessons of this experience is that major news media will not give voice to those who challenge established power - the paramilitary police who occupy the Black community. Protests that express outrage and grief over police murders are acceptable, as long as they are relatively small and do not demand systemic change. Protests that demand a change in the power relationships - putting communities of the oppressed in control of the armed forces that police them - are not.
It really doesn't matter to the people whether their demands are noted by news media. It will matter to the ruling class, however, which will work overtime to keep the lid on such movements. It should not surprise anyone that the same powers that murdered and imprisoned leaders of the first movement for community control of police - the Black Panther Party and its allies - would make sure that the voices of masses of people for the same demand would be ignored. We can't forget that it was here in Chicago that Fred Hampton and Mark Clark were murdered in their sleep by Chicago Police 46 years ago. Efforts to silence and disrupt this movement today may very well be next. But people learn. Unity + Struggle + Organization = Victories!
Watch the video here [https://vimeo.com/137884268]. Video by Scott Marshall, Marshall Arts Film, a Peoples World production.
Frank Chapman writes: "Less than 24 hours ago we made history here in Chicago by organizing and leading the largest and broadest ever protest/demonstration/march against police crimes and for a Civilian Police Accountability Council (CPAC). But the unique thing about making history is that each stage just sets the stage for the next movement, it's a continuous process. So there is always the question of what's next?"
* "A Word or Two About Principles and Coalitions in Our Movement" (2015-11-01, CCDS) [archive.is/YBjsw]: Those of us who are organizers, whether we are new to the movement or veterans, have learned a few things about how principles work in the dirt and blood of battle. Our principles are about what we stand for and fight for. We stand for an all elected, all Civilian Police
Accountability Council and we have been building a mass base of organizations and individuals around this principle, this democratic solution to the problem of police crimes.
We just had a mass march on August 29, 2015 of 3000 people demanding CPAC. But we built for this march through petitioning and tabling, organizing community forums, having mass rallies of hundreds and thousands of people, speaking before faith based organizations and engaging students and youth organizations. We mobilized into our movement over 20,000 people. We also reached out to hundreds of thousands through social media. So we not only have demands but a concrete, grass roots organized movement fighting for those demands on a daily basis. That is what we have, that is what we bring to the table.
We form alliances and do mass work based on our principles. There are groups whom we share this area of work with who approach the problem of police crimes differently. That is their prerogative. We will not abandon our principles or betray our base of support for anyone. And we demand of no one that they abandon their principles for us.
Coalitions can be formed between groups based on united actions. But once we start to bargain away our principles for the sake of a
temporary coalition then we have sounded the death knell of our movement.
No matter what the political climate is or what our enemies assail us with on any given day we are always organizing and fighting for CPAC and we will not loose our demand for community control of the police in the sauce of political elections, protest spectacles for piece meal
reforms or political theater. So long as we stand on our principles we are with the people and the people are with us.
SOLANO PEACE & FREEDOM PARTY
[SolanoPFP.blogspot.com] Use the ballot for our own People's candidates and legislation, campaign for the future!
* (2015-11-04): Francisco Herrera the GP SF Mayoral candidate got almost 15% of the vote yesterday.Two other independent candidates had a combined vote of 10%. So approx 25% voted to the Left of the DP mayor in one of the most well known cities in the US. I Think that is significant.
Francisco did exceptionally well, especially given the way that the election was treated as a foregone conclusion by the corporate media, the near-complete uniting of the different wings of the Democratic party behind Lee, the Herrera campaign's shoestring budget, etc. His campaign was also endorsed by P&F, SEIU 1021 and AFT 2121 among others, and his election night party was at our office,attended by many activists and community people. Lee's 56.9% was hardly a ringing endorsement.
Francisco also came very close to getting an endorsement from UESF, the teachers union I work for. They had originally given an opportunistic early endorsement to Lee, which was subsequently revoked, leaving an open door for another endorsement. So a resolution for endorsing Francisco was presented at the October membership meeting. However that vote was negated by a parliamentary maneuver by a member of "old guard" (a former officer.) Apparently there is a Bylaw Article that says that if the recommendation doesn't come first from the COPE Committee (Committee on Political Education) than the threshold is raised to 65% voting in favor at a membership meeting.
Additional: With a couple of exceptions, the SF Props went badly, hardly a surprise given the flood of corporate money. Airbnb provided $8 million+ to the No on F campaign, something like 96 or 97% of all the campaigns funding. We were treated to never-ending ads and mailers telling everyone that Prop F was "just too extreme." In the typical fashion of California right-wing election advertising, one mailer had a map of the world, asking, "Under Prop F which government wants to know where you will be sleeping at night?', with ?s over Tehran, Pyongyang and Moscow, and then three red ??? over San Francisco."
* "Latest ISideWith Poll Results Show Sanders Winning in All 50 States" (2015-10-28, thebernreport.com) [archive.is/eVy5A], showing how over 130,000 people participated in an online poll, with the majority supporting the openly "socialist" candidate Bernie Sanders.
* Is Bernie Sanders Dangerous to Socialism?" (2015-10-28, truth-out.org) [archive.is/g8RZE] [begin excerpt]: On October 18, 2015, presidential candidate Bernie Sanders decided that Iowa City would be where he declared what "democratic socialism" means to him. A bit shy of a 13-point program, Sanders did cite some helpful examples of what he considers socialist institutions: Social Security, Medicare and the police. Interestingly, the last time I heard these institutions in the United States referred to as socialist was when they were being attacked by libertarians like Ron Paul and Ross Perot. Apparently the populist independent-turned-Democrat from Vermont and the unrepentant capitalists share the viewpoint that government institutions are inherently socialist.
I could laugh off the reactionary ravings of the right wing. But my heart sank when I saw Sanders' statements. Empirically and historically incorrect, they endanger any hope for building socialism in the United States through a doublespeak of calling liberal institutions socialist.
It may seem nitpicky to the unfamiliar, but Sanders' politics are actually what is commonly referred to as social democracy. Social democrats believe that the purpose of the state is to intervene in, but not take over, the capitalist economy in order to promote social justice. [...]
In fact, echoing the "Obama is a socialist" sentiments of the modern Tea Party, opponents of Social Security in the late 1930s claimed that it was socialism. But it is very much not. Socialism is ownership by workers of the means of production, or worker control of the economy. [...]
Social Security, on the other hand, is intervention into the capitalist economy. Rather than building workers' power, Social Security gives them "social insurance" based on the very same unequal metrics - wages that created the need for the intervention. It is like a consolation prize for losing capitalism! President Franklin Delano Roosevelt's New Deal brought on a "golden age of capitalism," and is still referenced as such by the capitalist apologists of today. [end excerpt]
* "Sawant Announces ‘Progressive Plan’ For Small Businesses" (2015-10-28, capitolhilltimes.com) [archive.is/sGKqR]
* "Seattle Socialist Kshama Sawant Cheered in Oakland" (2015-11-01, CCDS) [archive.is/YBjsw]:
Kshama Sawant, Seattle City Councilmember (Socialist Alternative), spoke to a packed house last night at the First Unitarian Church of Oakland. Enthusiastic applause greeted Sawant as she took the stage. Sawant received national attention when she was elected in 2013, in a stunning upset of Richard Conlin (Democrat) who had held the seat for 16 years. Sawant is the first self-described socialist to be elected to the City Council of Seattle in modern times.
In her speech, Sawant described how she had ignored accepted wisdom on her way to victory. She said she was repeatedly advised to keep her program proposals vague, be less strident, and to downplay that she is a socialist. Instead, Sawant's aggressive campaign sharply defined the things she stood for, and she proudly proclaimed herself a socialist.
One of Sawant's signature issue was to raise the minimum wage in Seattle to $15 an hour. Last June, the Seattle City Council voted unanimously for a phased in increase of the city's minimum wage, which will eventually rise to $15 an hour. In August, Washington's State Supreme Court ruled that a referendum to raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour which was passed by voters in Sea-Tac, a suburb of Seattle, in 2013 by a razor thin margin, also pertains to workers at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport.
Sawant's appearance was used to raise funds for her re-election campaign. She said her victory will be written off as a footnote of history, unless she wins re-election. Sawant emphasized that the Seattle establishment, which includes the politically dominant Democratic Party, and big business interests, have united behind her opponent, Pamela Brooks (Democrat), who is President of the Seattle Urban League, and an African American. Sawant urged the crowd to chip in to help her counteract the big money lavished on Brooks' campaign.
Gail McGlaughlin (Green Party), the former Mayor of Richmond, CA, and current member of its City Council, also received big cheers at the gathering. McLaughlin is a leader of the Richmond Progressive Alliance (RPA), which unites progressives of different affiliations. She said that while RPA [http://richmondprogressivealliance.net/] is somewhat different, it has many things in common with Sawants campaign. One of them is that neither accept donations from corporations. McLaughlin said that they strove to represent the interests of the community, not those of big money.
Chris Hedges, a Pulizter Prize winning journalist and best selling author, was also a featured speaker. He is currently a columnist and editor at TruthDig. [http://www.truthdig.com/] Hedges called for a bottom up political revolution. He also asserted that there will be no progress domestically until the bloated U.S. war machine is confronted and reduced. Hedges said that 53 percent of the discretional federal budget is dedicated to the military and the security state.
Interestingly, only one of the featured speakers said anything positive about U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders in their presentations. The self-described democratic socialist Sanders, previously an Independent, is making waves and drawing huge crowds in support of his campaign for the Democratic Party nomination for U.S. President. The only mention of Sanders came from Hedges, who said he wouldn't vote for him, because it would be a betrayal of the cause of the Palestinian people - a criticism of Sanders' support for Israel. During the period of questions from the audience, Sawant did comment that Sanders' campaign was empowering. In August, Sawant campaigned together with Sanders at an event in Seattle. Socialist Alternative [http://www.socialistalternative.org/] the organization which Sawant is a member of, has given critical support to Sanders, particularly his call for a political revolution against the Billionaires.
The program was the first major event organized by the Oakland branch of Socialist Alternative, which has only recently been formed. Before the evening concluded, organizers announced that they had raised $15,000 in donations and pledges for Sawant, a remarkable feat for a candidate running for the City Council in a city almost 800 miles from Oakland.
For more information on Sawant's re-election campaign: [http://KshamaSawant.org].
SOLIDARITY WITH THE NEW AFRICAN NATION!
Black Power! Revive the Community! Defend the Nation!
* "Report: 50 percent of Black millennials know a police violence victim" (2015-11-04, AP Newswire) [archive.is/0JLoB]
* "Police Killings Surpass the Worst Years of Lynching, Capital Punishment, and a Movement Responds" (2015-1-04, huffingtonpost.com) [archive.is/vS7VM]
* (2015-10-31, Afi Ref, Black Riders Liberation Party - Oakland): BOW! BLACK RIDERS ON CAMPUS! COMRADE SGT ASKARI MAKING A PRESENTATION ABOUT THE HISTORY OF BLACK RIDERS AND BLACK PANTHER PARTY FOR SELF DEFENSE, FOR BPP HISTORY MONTH. WE IN THE SCHOOLS REACHING THE YOUTH AND TEACHING TRUTH. EQUIPPING AND ARMING THE BABIES WITH KNOWLEDGE OF SELF AND COMBAT SKILLS FOR SELF DEFENSE!!! ALL POWER TO THE PEOPLE WHO DON'T FEAR FREEDOM!!!
"It is our duty to fight for our freedom. It is our duty to win. We must love each other and support each other. We have nothing to lose but our chains." - #AssataShakur was #liberated on this day in 1979 #HandsOffAssata #FreeEmAll
* "Harlem Welcomes Venezuelan President Nicholas Maduro" (2015-11-01, CCDS) [archive.is/YBjsw]: On September 28th, the eve of an address before the UN General Assembly, President Nicholás Maduro of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela was greeted by hundreds of invitation-only activists, elected leaders, religious figures and cultural performers at the National Black Theatre in Harlem. The evening program was sponsored by the Healthcare Workers Union East 1199 SEIU, TransAfrica and the Institute of the Black World 21st Century. The program was organized as the "Afro-Descendant/People of African Descent Leadership Summit" in celebration of the United Nations 2015-2014 International Decade for People of African Descent.
Preceding the evening event, President Maduro met with 20 trade union leaders, including representatives of the New York State Nurses Association, 32BJ SEIU, 1199 SEIU and several members of the Left Labor Project. At the meeting President Maduro proposed a solidarity trade union conference in Caracus, Venezuela bringing together unions from throughout Latin America, the U.S. and the Caribbean.
Following the trade union meeting, speakers spoke of the struggles of African Americans today. Opal Tometi, Co-founder of # Black Lives Matter, said the number of Black people killed by police today equals the number of people lynched during the years of Jim Crow. Tometi drew upon the international dimensions of the struggle from police killings in U.S. to the Mediterranean Sea where African people are drowning fleeing their homes due to policies of the IMF and World Bank. "The lives of Black people in the U.S. and Africa and around the globe are inextricably linked," said Tometi.
NY State Senator Bill Perkins presented a NY State Proclamation welcoming President Maduro to Harlem. Other speakers included Esmeralda Brown, President of the Southern Diaspora Research and Development Center; Yvette Modestin, Executive Director of Encuentro Diaspora Afro; Estela Vazquez, Executive Vice President of 1199 SEIU; and Danny Glover, Chair of TransAfrica. Ron Daniels, President of the Institute of the Black World 21st Century, chaired the program.
Rising to a standing ovation, President Maduro was visibly moved by the warmth of the reception in the heart of the historic home of the African American people. "We have suffered with you since the events of Ferguson over a year ago," said Maduro. He linked the racist police repression in the U.S. to the "legacy of slavery and the holocaust of the indigenous people in these lands."
Maduro called for a "new economic and social model to benefit workers, not capital and the wealthy." He drew attention to the 2030 Millennial Goals adopted the day before at the UN Sustainable Development Conference. The agreement with 17 objectives and 169 goals is an "historic decision," said Maduro. An action plan will be implemented over the next 15 years to eliminate inequality and poverty.
Maduro also hailed news of an agreement between the Colombian government and the FARC ending years of armed conflict. Maduro said he called Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos to congratulate him, and proposed that Venezuela and Colombia move to resolve conflicts between their two countries. Under the auspices of UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon, Maduro said he met with the President of Guyana to resolve border conflicts between their two countries resulting in an agreement to exchange ambassadors.
Speaking of right wing opposition forces in Venezuela, Maduro blasted the U.S. for financing the "five months of violence" in his country. He spoke about the upcoming parliamentary elections December 6th where 1,500 candidates are running under the banner of the Socialist Unity Party. One half of the candidates are women and 40% are under the age of 30, said Maduro. He urged the audience to visit Venezuela for the elections, and quoted former U.S. President Jimmy Carter who said his government had the fairest electoral process in the world.
Venezuela will host a meeting of people of African descent in conjunction with the International Decade for People of African Descent, announced Maduro. The conference will center on the three main goals of the decade - "recognition, justice and development."
Ralph Everard Gonsalves, Prime Minister of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, unexpectedly arrived at the evening event. He was warmly greeting by Maduro and invited to speak. Gonsalves is spearheading a campaign of reparations for slavery and the genocide of indigenous people throughout the Americas and the Caribbean at the International Court of Justice. "The legacy of underdevelopment in our region," said Gonsalves, "is traced to slavery and native genocide."
information collected by the Worker's Defense Committee [http://is.gd/VOkmLr]
* "Tense Meeting on Minimum Wage in Mountain View Ends in Victory" (2015-10-28, by R. Robertson, Indybay.org newswire) [archive.is/knTai]
* "SEIU1021 SF General Hospital Pharmacy Worker & Other Unionists Protest Workplace Bullying" (2015-10-29, by Labor Video Project, laborvideo.org) [archive.is/8BSYj]: SF General Hospital Workers are fed up with the continues workplace bullying and harassment by management. They spoke out at the hospital to demand a halt to these ant-worker practices. San Francisco General Hospital workers from the pharmacy and other departments at the hospital spoke out on October 26, 2015 against the epidemic of workplace bullying. The rally was initiated by the SEIU 1021 San Francisco General Hospital chapter but included workers from IBT 2000 and other unions and workers at the hospital.
For more media:
HANDS OFF OUR HOMES!
* "Bay area residents demand affordable housing" (2015-11-02, peoplesworld.org) [archive.is/x0tKE]
* "Pittburgh to Kentucky: People Demand Affordable Housing" (2015-11-01, CCDS) [archive.is/YBjsw]: "Black Homes Matter" was a sign seen in are recent rally in Pittsburgh. 300 or more residents in Penn Plaza have received eviction notices so that the owners can convert it into a high end retail and apartment complex. Residents are being forced into the suburbs, but generally affordable housing is shrinking.
Carl Redwood, Jr. is the head of the Hill Consensus group. This group is fighting a longstanding policy of Black removal. 'Pittsburgh housing policy is out-migration of Blacks to the suburbs. The campaign started in the Hill in 1959, and though that was public policy, it is now affecting private housing," he said. "The mayor is only interested in luxury units. He's building 8,000 of them. Well, we need 8,000 affordable units to offset that."
Montel Jackson is a member of the Tenant Council for East Liberty Gardens where they are facing similar problems, told the Pittsburgh Courier said, "We're not going to just sit here. This porch archway is filled-this whole street should be filled because this issue is affecting thousands of people," he said. "We need housing as good as or better than the new housing because it affects important things like where our kids go to school and access to jobs."
Lexington, Kentucky -
This is nothing new, nor is it isolated to Pittsburgh.This has happened time and time again to communities of color. In Lexington Kentucky residents of a historic Black community, the East End are being pushed out. Developers are buy houses in the neighborhood cheap, doing some fix up, and then flipping the for high prices, much higher than the longtime residents can afford. One resident, Alex Yates, while she slept in the house with her young son, woke up one morning to her roof being ripped off. Her land lord had not told her that her house has been sold.
Kentucky Workers League, CCDS, and other area progressives maintained a picket line along with Alex and some of her neighbors, not allowing the developers access to her home until she was given a legal eviction notice with 30 days to move. She finally did get the eviction notice and since moved but she still forced to relocate.She has been displaced away from family and friends. Her son was had to change schools.
Last year a large coalition won an an Affordable Housing Trust Fund. But it has no dedicated revenue source and with the gentrification going on affordable housing is disappearing faster than it can ever be developed. A 2014 local housing study (Lexington's Affordable Housing Challenge) stated that Lexington's housing costs have been rising much faster than wages for decades. The study noted that 87% of all rental housing units in Lexington were affordable to households working at the minimum wage in 1990 but that only 17% were affordable to such families by 2012.
Since then community members have formed the Lexington Housing Justice Project to take on these issues on a broader scale. The primary goals of this very young campaign are to prevent displacement and to popularize the view that there is universal need for shelter and therefore housing should be an affordable social right rather than an expensive commodity. Two main ways the project seeks too prevent low-income folks getting priced out of the neighborhoods they call home are (a) enhancing the power of tenants in relation to the landlords through the formation of renters unions that can fight collectively for improved rights; and (b) by bringing more land and resources under public/social ownership in order to strengthen the non-market based provision of permanent affordable housing.
Berkley, California -
Edith Hallberg wrote in an earlier issue of the Mobilizer about what was happening in the Bay area. This problem is continuing. Recently she wrote, "Unfortunately, Berkeley is beginning to look like a fortress of skyscrapers. There is hardly a street in Berkeley that is free from luxury apartments and condo developments. For low income residents, there is almost no affordable housing. In a Section 8 apartment that has need of repairs, the tenant either has to hope that the landlord will make the repairs or he has to to find another apartment, but there is almost no low income apartments available because of the massive building and speculation by developer and landlords."
Hallberg continues, "I am now residing at a senior HUD facility. When I moved from my old section 8 apartments, not only did the landlord give me back my security deposit without a fight, but a month after my move the landlord rented my old apartment for almost one and a half times the amount section 8 had been paying. We are getting very discouraged around here."
These stories can be repeated countless time across the country. Since the housing crisis of 2007 thousands of home owners have lost their homes which increased the demand for rentals. Corporate investors and banks have moved in and bought up many of these properties at low prices and converted many to rental property at high rates. This led to the rise of the corporate landlord and "renting from Wall Street" (.pdf) [http://is.gd/vHartb].
At the same time HUD in 2012 started selling of property through its Distressed Asset Stability Program (DASP). Between the start start of DASP in 2012 and 2014 they sold 98,100 mortgages for a total of $8.8 billion. 97% of the these have been won by for-profit entities, largely private equity firms. See the report "Vulture Capital Hits Home" (.pdf) [http://is.gd/fwvcpy].
We have a national housing crisis in the US. Right to the City and Homes for All have been working on this nationally [archive.is/w2j95]. They are affiliated with groups in many cities across the country. It is a good way to network nationally on this issue and learn from each other.
Photo: Black Home Matter, Pittsburgh
information collected by the Committee to
DEFEND THOSE WITHOUT HOMES!
* "Mayor Lane's Latest--and the Activist Responses" (2015-10-31, by Robert Norse, member of the Freedom Sleepers) [archive.is/qDRes] [begin excerpt]: On his facebook page several days ago, Mayor Don Lane posted a lengthy lament regarding homeless services and city abuses against the poor. Though the words "civil rights", "human rights", "civil liberties", and/or "criminalization of the poor" tellingly do not appear). Several activists--we call ourselves Freedom Sleepers--have been sleeping out one night a week suffering klieg lights, security guard surveillance and SCPD citations. Something the Mayor declines to mention I've ignored most of Lane's Lament to focus on proposal #4 below to eliminate the Sleeping and Blanket Bans sections of the Camping Ordinance. I've sent my preliminary thoughts to other activists, which I reprint in modified form here. I've also sent an e-mail to Lane suggesting that if he ever wants to get specific and reverse the numerous anti-homeless laws he's voted for, I'd be happy to be helpful. At the request of HUFF members, I've sent out inquiries to the other Council members asking if they support Lane's potential proposal. [end excerpt]
* "17th Sleep Out Supports Safe Sidewalk Sleeping" call to action (2015-11-03, Freedom Sleepers) [archive.is/Dswq8] [begin excerpt]:
TO MAKE SLEEP LEGAL FOR THE POOR -
Jumping off from last week's successful Sidewalk Safe Zone Sleep-Out, Freedom Sleepers will resume their "make Santa Cruz a safe and legal place for poor people who have no legal place to sleep" campaign against the City's anti-homeless Sleeping and Blanket Bans.
LESS TICKETS, MORE SLEEPING -
At the last Freedom Sleep-Out no one was ticketed. The infamous "sleep deprivation special" Klieg Lights, though posted and 'guarded" by two (down from five) First Alarm Security guards, were not turned on.
20-30 folks slept through the night on the sidewalk or in vehicles nearby without getting MC 6.36. citations. Cops harass sleepers outside with these $149 tickets elsewhere in the City. Nearby other groups of sleepers also apparently slept without incident. The Safe Sleeping Zone seems to be expanding.
Modest peanut butter and jelly mini-sandwiches will be available later in the night and coffee the next morning (and in limited quantities during the night).
EXPANDING THE PROTEST -
Up for discussion will be plans to intensify and extend the protest with secondary events such as teach-in's, skits, musical jams, and other welcoming events.
Also provoking both hope and skepticism--Mayor Lane's lengthy facebook lament which includes a specific offer to Amend the current camping ordinance to remove references to "sleep" and "sleeping" and "covering up with blankets." [end excerpt]
Documenting human-rights abuse by domestic security agencies
[NorthbayCopwatch.blogspot.com] [copblock.org] [wecopwatch.org] [filmingcops.com]
* " ‘Went in like Gestapo’–Sonoma sheriffs’ bloody rampage" (2015-10-07, liberationnews.org) [archive.is/SZh16]
* "The real criminals in Sonoma County: A statement from the Police Accountability Clinic & Helpline" (2015-10-17, by Elbert ‘Big Man’ Howard, sfbayview.com) [archive.is/bP9zB]
* "NYPD Undercover "Converted" To Islam To Spy On Brooklyn College Students" (2015-10-29, gothamist.com) [archive.is/3Qlbq]
* * (2015-10-30, facebook.com/FilmingCops) [archive.is/uPTsE], full image at [archive.is/8kx5n]: A lot of people STILL don't know this. SPREAD THE WORD and help set the record straight. We moved the new information to the top so it loads faster http://bit.ly/1RyhtZ8. The foster family actually confirmed she has mental illness in an interview. She has a quiet personality by nature, and the medication she was on made her even more withdrawn and introverted. She didn't participate enough in class that day as a result, and at one point looked at her phone. Imagine what she was going through. But the school personnel then labeled her "disruptive." Imagine that! It sounds like this poor girl was simply needing somebody to talk to and needing somebody to help. Now they also want to make her pay $1,000 relating to the charges. Horrible. Broken family, mental illness, and now police brutality, followed by thousands of callous people kicking her when she's down.
NORTHBAY COPWATCH: Domestic Security Agencies and private-sector partners
* "FBI Director Comey: Mass Incarceration "A Distortion," Warns Against Criticizing Police for Brutality" (2015-10-30, whowhatwhy.org): The DoJ is “puzzled.” The White House, “irritated.” Even The New York Times admits he doesn’t provide evidence for his claims [archive.is/a0usE]. The director’s comments are red meat to Republicans who have used them to criticize President Obama for not being supportive of law enforcement.
If it happens to them, it also hapens to peace activists on campaus across the USA, and in communities. The operation is classified as ES/OH (Electronic Surveillance / Organized Harassment).
* "New FBI Program Trains Teachers, Students to Snoop On Muslims; Civil rights groups warn that new FBI tool "Don't Be a Puppet" violates civil liberties of Muslims" (2015-11-02, commondreams.org) [archive.is/8lnSc]
* "All iPhones hackable? Hackers harvest $1mln iOS9 bounty from NSA-linked ‘bug broker’ " (2015-11-03, rt.com) [archive.is/hJGwi]
NORTHBAY COPWATCH: Five-Eyes, and other transnational partners
As the United Kingdom of Great Britain goes, so does the entire Anglo-speaking world. So it goes...
* "Seizure of reporter's laptop under terrorism laws was 'not contested' by BBC; Officers from Thames Valley police used special counter-terrorism powers to seize computer belonging to Newsnight journalist Secunder Kermani" (2015-10-29, theguardian.com) [archive.is/jYUgy]
* "German and Israeli Research Leaders Join Forces to Launch Global Cybersecurity Center" (2015-10-21, afhu.org) [archive.is/pr24f]
from the Committee to
FREE 'EM ALL!
[PoliticalPrisonersUSA.blogspot.com] End the Drug War! Stop Jim Crow! Close the Torture Chambers!
Become a Human Rights Pen Pal! [link]. [solitarywatch.com] [facebook.com/incarceratedworkers] [supportprisonerresistance.noblogs.org] [denverabc.wordpress.com] [prisonlegalnews.org] [prisonbooks.info] [nycabc.wordpress.com] [powmedicaljustice.com] [sacprisonersupport.wordpress.com]
* "Prison Profiteers Unmasked" (2015-11-02, American Friends Service Committee, afsc.org) [archive.is/tN4eM] [begin excerpt]: Activists, the media, and even presidential candidates are speaking out against private prison companies and other corporations that profit from mass incarceration. That’s why the American Friends Service Committee (AFSC) has launched an online tool designed to help socially responsible investors align their portfolios with their values and divest from the prison industry: [http://afsc.org/investigate]
The new tool can scan any list of holdings and highlight prison-related investments. “We wanted to expand the focus and go beyond ‘the usual suspects,’ the facility management companies,” said Dr. Dalit Baum, AFSC’s Director of Economic Activism. “Our research maps the wider prison industry and profiles the main companies providing services that range from health and food services to private probation and the supply of surveillance apparatuses.” [end excerpt]
* "Sleep Deprivation for Almost Three Months! Help STOP It" (2015-10-29, prisonerhungerstrikesolidarity.wordpress.com) [archive.is/I7ALb]
* "Solitary Prisoners’ Lawyers Slam CDCR for Sleep Deprivation" (2015-10-29, prisonerhungerstrikesolidarity.wordpress.com) [archive.is/8KVax]
* "Stop The Retaliation Against Major George Tillery: URGENT ALERT - MAJOR TILLERY IN HOSPITAL!" (2015-10-27, justice4majortillery.blogspot.com) [archive.is/AcBZ1]
* "How The Assault at Spring Valley High Brutally Demonstrates the ‘School-to-Prison Pipeline’ ; The assault at Spring Valley High is representative of the U.S.'s disturbing habit of criminalizing black and Latino children" (2015-10-29, commondreams.org) [archive.is/xlAzc]
* "Legal Lockdown: Latest suit against Sonoma County raises spectre of federal takeover of local lockup" (2015-10-14, bohemian.com) [archive.is/I4BxB]
* "At least 27 women on hunger strike at the Hutto Detention Center #Hutto27" (2015-10-27, grassrootsleadership.org) [http://is.gd/8hLnyB]
* "The Hunger Strike You Haven’t Heard About" (2015-10-21, thinkprogress.org) [http://is.gd/zVR6Vn]
* "Hunger Strike at Texas Detention Center Swells Into the Hundreds" (2015-11-02, rhrealitycheck.org) [archive.is/cY0f3]
* "Day 11 of LaSalle14 Hunger Strike; ICE Attempts Forced Deportation; Strikers Issue Statement for Women in Hutto27 Hunger Strike" (2015-10-29, Political Prisoner News):
14 South Asian detainees, from Bangladesh and India (known as the "LaSalle14") at the LaSalle Detention Center started a hunger strike at breakfast time on October 19. All of the strikers are asylum seekers, and some have been held for up to 2 years.
Yesterday, ICE attempted a forced deportation of LaSalle14 striker, Harekrushna Patel (A#206-686-481) by pushing him on to a plane back to India where Mr. Patel would have faced immediate danger and risk. Mr. Patel has been in detention for nearly 2 years, and his wife is waiting for him in NYC. Due to the failure of the attempted deportation, Mr. Patel was brought back to the facility and has been moved into medical isolation against his will.
Last night, the LaSalle hunger strikers received news about the beginning of a hunger strike by 27 women at the Hutto Detention facility. Upon hearing this news, the LaSalle14 delivered a statement of solidarity which can be heard online at: [youtube.com/watch?v=Yrn1zQwkUsQ].
The LaSalle14 hunger strike has been in coordination with DRUM - Desis Rising Up & Moving. Director of DRUM, Fahd Ahmed stated *"with the series of hunger strikes, and now even communication between the hunger strikers, we can clearly see that this country's detention policies are in crisis. Can you imagine the conditions that would cause hundreds of detainees in different facilities to put their bodies on the line?"*
Since the last 3 days, ICE officials have been pressuring the strikers to contact the consulates of their home countries, which is alarming since it is these same government that all the hunger strikers are escaping and seeking asylum from.
There is an online petition by the Not1More Campaign for the LaSalle14:
Follow regular updates at: [facebook.com/DesisRising]
* "Day 10 of LaSalle14 Hunger Strike; Retaliation against hunger strikers continues" (2015-10-28, Political Prisoner News):
14 South Asian detainees, from Bangladesh and India (known as the "LaSalle14") at the LaSalle Detention Center started a hunger strike at breakfast time on October 19. All of the strikers are asylum seekers, and some have been held for up to 2 years. They are demanding to be released from detention, as per ICE's own recommendations that detainees who have been held for over 6 months and cannot be released in the forseeable future should be released.
Since the hunger strike started, 3 of the strikers have been moved to Etowah Detention Center, and been prevented from making any contact or communication with their families or with DRUM.
At LaSalle, the hunger strikers have had their water supply turned off at times. They have also faced interference in their ability to transfer money from their commissary to their phone accounts, thus interfering with their ability to communicate as well.
Since the last 2 days, ICE officials have been pressuring the strikers to contact the consulates of their home countries, which is alarming since it is these same government that all the hunger strikers are escaping and seeking asylum from.
* "LaSalle14 Hunger Strike Ends; Detainees Pledge to Continue Fight for Justice" (2015-11-01, Political Prisoner News):
14 South Asian detainees, from Bangladesh and India (known as the "LaSalle14") at the LaSalle Detention Center started a hunger strike at breakfast time on October 19. All of the strikers are asylum seekers, and some have been held for up to 2 years. On Saturday, October 31^st , they ended their hunger strike.
Over 12 days of the hunger strike, ICE tried to suppress the hunger strike rather than heed the demands f the strikers. ICE moved 4 of the detainees to Etowah Detention center in Alabama, cut off water to the hunger strikers cells, cut off strikers access to their commissary money to prevent access to phones, pressured strikers to call their consulates even though they are all fleeing persecution by those same governments, and twice attempted forced deportations of one of the strikers.
The strikers issued the following statement as they ended their hunger strike: "We came this country to save our lives, but this country treated us like animals and held us in detention for months and years. To get some justice for immigrants, we decided to hunger strike. Even though the last 12 days we was in hunger strike, no ICE officer treated us like human. They say Louisiana office rules are different. Is Louisiana New Orleans ICE separate from the rest of ICE? In the end they threatened us that if one of us dies, they will charge us with their death. So we are ending our strike. We thank all those who support us in our struggle. Until we get immigration justice and freedom we will continue our fight!"
Follow regular updates at: [facebook.com/DesisRising]
* (2015-11-03, from Charlie, via Bilal Ali): Hi Folks, I just need to report some good news.
One of the prisons i visit, Salinas Valley in Soledad, has food and beverage prices that are 50%-100% higher than the 2 other prisons i visit - like $2 for a bottle of water, $4!!! for an It's It bar, and $9 for a shitty entree with cold greasy french fries and some hi fat bready main course.
After my 3rd visit, i wrote the warden a letter to complain and cc'd all kinds of other CDCR (Dept of prisons) officials, an Assembly person, and a senator. The warden wrote me back a friendly letter saying that CDCR contracts the food and suggested i follow up with the visiting Sgt. I called him and asked him for the name of the person at CDCR who contracts the food. He called me 2 weeks later with a name. I called her on Friday, and she sent an email to the vendor immediately asking for a complete list of items offered and prices.
Today she called to THANK ME! and report that all prices will be going down, and they will start offering fruits and vegetables for the first time (which they offer in the other prisons.)
Needless to say i'm blown away and very pleased. Looking forward to my next visit to see the results. Next front - getting DeWayne Ewing out.
Everyone can help with that one. Stay tuned.
* "California prisoners form CCDS chapter" (2015-10, CCDS) [http://is.gd/F9aDMO], describing how prisoners use their time to learn about and study political theory, with a focus on socialism.
articles recommended by the
SAN PABLO BAY ECOLOGICAL PRESERVATION ASSOCIATION
Campaigns, info, and more [SanPabloBayEPA.blogspot.com]. Science [discardstudies.com]
* "Effort underway to repopulate Napa Valley with oak trees seeks volunteers" (2015-10-27, timesheraldonline.com) [archive.is/FfdhC]
* "At Mountain Lake, One Last Chance to See the Turtles Off" (2015-10-14, baynature.org) [archive.is/fSjOK]
* "Did Dust Bowl’s Ravages End in the 1940s? New Study Says No" (2015-10-28, tntoday.utk.edu) [archive.is/b9UBx]
SAN PABLO BAY EPA: Health and the Human Ecology
Monopolists enforce a regime that does not recognize the natural right to health and life. Info [detoxproject.org].
* "Analysis: California's Poorest Counties Hit Hardest by Spraying of Glyphosate" (2015-11-02. by Center for Biological Diversity) [http://is.gd/yDxlsJ], full report (.pdf) [http://is.gd/AbXnRL]
* "Toxins remain in clothes long after manufacturing; 'We have only scratched the surface, this is something that has to be dealt with,' said chemist Conny Ostman" (2015-10-23, UPI Newswire) [archive.is/P92xX]
* "Tampon Industry and FDA Wage Massive War on Women with Revisionist History to Memory Hole Toxic Shock Syndrome (TSS)" (2015-10-30, by Jennifer Lea Reynolds) [archive.is/KoP1N]
SAN PABLO BAY EPA: Save The Birds [link]! and the Bees [link]!
A campaign to preserve and expand the habitat and populations of pollinators in the San Pablo Bay Area.
* "Death and Extinction of the Bees" (2014-03-28, by Joachim Hagopian) [archive.is/R3sQz]
articles recommended by the
NO NUKES! campaign
[StopNuclearDeath.blogspot.com] [nuclear-news.net] [nukeresister.org] [nukefree.org]
* "Radioactive honey found near nuclear power station" (2015-11-02, rt.com) [archive.is/Lww7o]
articles recommended by the
SAN PABLO BAY SOVEREIGNTY Think-tank
* "U Researchers create light emitting diodes from food and beverage waste; Development can offer an environmentally sustainable alternative to current methods" (2015-10-13, unews.utah.edu) [archive.is/Rl4CK]
* "Wood instead of petroleum: New approach to producing chemical substances solely from renewable resources; Scientists create a new international research consortium to develop a sustainable chemical infrastructure" (2015-10-26, uni-mainz.de) [archive.is/zvvUa]
* "Tamalpais Union High School District Dedicates SunPower Solar Carport" (2015-10-27, sunpowercorp.com) [http://is.gd/eZgv3G]
UNITED STATES FASCISM WATCH
[UnitedStatesFascism.blogspot.com] Documenting the process of fascism and for whom it benefits.
Where does the money go when the debt is paid off, and of the money borrowed, what of those private beauracracies which recieve that debt, to whom does it benefit, and what is the ideology of the individual shareholders? It certainly ain't socialism...
* "Obama to Leave Behind $20 Trillion National Debt; When Barack Obama was elected a president of the United States in 2009, the country’s national debt estimated $10,6 trillion. Back then Obama’s administration officials condemned former President George W. Bush for running up $4 trillion over his time in office. Now the debt has increased to 18,15 trillion and will probably hit 20 trillion by 2017" (2015-11-03, sputniknews.com) [archive.is/Q5hsq]
* "Tax haven: US ‘threatens’ global efforts to fight tax evasion, financial crimes" (2015-11-03, rt.com) [archive.is/LakAu]
* "In Search of a Tax Haven to Stash Your Cash? Look No Further Than the US!The United States jumped up a global list to become one of the top three tax havens for super-rich individuals and businesses looking to hide financial assets, according to the Tax Justice Network (TJN)" (2015-11-03, sputniknews.com) [archive.is/ZQ5kf]
* "Kickbacks, Conflicts and Darkness: Welcome to Your “Modern” Stock Market" (2015-10-29, wallstreetonparade.com) [archive.is/EMHrG]
* "Ben Bernanke Is Still Keeping the Secrets of the Crash of 2007-2009" (2015-11-02, wallstreetonparade.com) [archive.is/9COfJ]
* "Big Pharma and the Money-Making Business of Medicine" (2015-11-01, by Dr. Gary G. Kohls) part 2 [archive.is/MPsDD]
* "Arbitration Everywhere, Stacking the Deck of Justice" (2015-10-31, nytimes.com) [archive.is/nRFHM] [begin excerpt]: By inserting individual arbitration clauses into a soaring number of consumer and employment contracts, companies like American Express devised a way to circumvent the courts and bar people from joining together in class-action lawsuits, realistically the only tool citizens have to fight illegal or deceitful business practices.
Over the last few years, it has become increasingly difficult to apply for a credit card, use a cellphone, get cable or Internet service, or shop online without agreeing to private arbitration. The same applies to getting a job, renting a car or placing a relative in a nursing home.
Among the class actions thrown out because of the clauses was one brought by Time Warner customers over charges they said mysteriously appeared on their bills and another against a travel booking website accused of conspiring to fix hotel prices. A top executive at Goldman Sachs who sued on behalf of bankers claiming sex discrimination was also blocked, as were African-American employees at Taco Bell restaurants who said they were denied promotions, forced to work the worst shifts and subjected to degrading comments.
Some state judges have called the class-action bans a “get out of jail free” card, because it is nearly impossible for one individual to take on a corporation with vast resources.
Patricia Rowe of Greenville, S.C., learned this firsthand when she initiated a class action against AT&T. Ms. Rowe, who was challenging a $600 fee for canceling her phone service, was among more than 900 AT&T customers in three states who complained about excessive charges, state records show. When the case was thrown out last year, she was forced to give up and pay the $600. Fighting AT&T on her own in arbitration, she said, would have cost far more.
By banning class actions, companies have essentially disabled consumer challenges to practices like predatory lending, wage theft and discrimination, court records show.
“This is among the most profound shifts in our legal history,” William G. Young, a federal judge in Boston who was appointed by President Ronald Reagan, said in an interview. “Ominously, business has a good chance of opting out of the legal system altogether and misbehaving without reproach.” [end excerpt]
* "Why Is an Enron Billionaire Trying to Keep Teachers From Retiring?" (2015-09-30, huffingtonpost.com) [archive.is/suxwh]
* "Walmart heirs working to kill affordable rooftop solar power" (2014-10-09, dailykos.com) [http://is.gd/1YIaat]
The following is an example of how the process of fascism censors criticism of economic plans that affect the ecology.
* "Comments Critical of Crude by Rail Left Out of Environmental Review; Leaders of the Quinalt Indian nation, local fishermen and environmental groups condemn the omission of at least 32 substantial comments on a controversial project at Grays Harbor" (2015-11-02, earthjustice.org) [archive.is/IH3sQ]
* "The happiness conspiracy: against optimism and the cult of positive thinking; Pessimism gets a bad press, but compulsory positive thinking can be brutally enforced" (2015-10-26, newstatesman.com) [archive.is/bjXqn]. Mark mason writes: Really, really, really important insights into the insidious advertising propaganda machinery. Ehrenreich also wrote, Bright Sided, analyzing the Denial Industry which intends to blame the victim of capitalism while never allowing any questions to rise about the economic system. If you're not happy, there's something wrong with you-- take a pill.
* "Texas Orders Health Clinics to Turn Over Patient Data" (2015-10-23, nytimes.com) [archive.is/GqIHD] [begin excerpt]: Three days after Gov. Greg Abbott announced his decision to end Medicaid funding for Planned Parenthood, state health department investigators showed up on Thursday at Planned Parenthood health centers in Houston, Dallas, San Antonio and Brownsville with orders to turn over thousands of pages of documents, including patients’ records and employees’ home addresses and telephone numbers. Some, but not all, of the extensive records sought by the state related specifically to abortion. For example, Planned Parenthood South Texas was told to produce five years of records — whether electronic, paper or ultrasound — concerning any patients billed to Medicaid who had an abortion in which any part of the fetus was removed or preserved for research use. Planned Parenthood Gulf Coast was to turn over a complete copy of certain patients’ records, including doctors’ orders, nursing notes and lab tests, as well as the center’s appointment books, patient sign-in sheets and contracts. “We’re concerned about the breadth and depth of what they’re asking for,” said Sarah Wheat, a spokeswoman for Planned Parenthood of Greater Texas. [end excerpt]
* "Frank Rich: GOP debate demands ‘Seem to have been drafted by Stalin,’ ‘Fascistic’ " (2015-11-03, breitbart.com) [archive.is/Zs0mX]. Wait, I thought the Democrats were supposed to be the, "Commies"', but now the Republicans are somehow simultaneously, "Stalinists" and Fascists? Looks like somebody never took a basic political science class.
THIS is what the NAZIS forced people to do! Can You Dig It?
* "Pat Robertson: 'Gay People Should Wear Specially-Colored Clothes To Warn Straight People' " (2015-11-02, religionlo.com) [archive.is/jqY32]
USA FASCISM: Military State
* "U.S. military sales more than $47B in fiscal 2015" (2015-10-23, UPI Newswire) [archive.is/g6KYH]
* " ‘My Body Was Not Mine, but the U.S. Military’s’ ; Inside the disturbing sex industry thriving around America’s bases" (2015-11-01, politico.com) [archive.is/o7gsA].
Comments by Matt Florence, and Gunnar Angeles (no affiliation between the two): U.S. military authorities occupying Korea after the war took over some of the “comfort stations” that had been central to the Japanese war machine since the 19th century. During its conquest of territory across East Asia, the Japanese military forced hundreds of thousands of women from Korea, China, Okinawa and rural Japan, and other parts of Asia into sexual slavery, providing soldiers with “royal gifts” from the emperor. With the assistance of Korean officials, U.S. authorities continued the system absent formal slavery, but under conditions of exceedingly limited choice for the women involved. After a military junta seized power in South Korea in a 1961 coup, Korean officials created legally recognized “special districts” for businesses catering to U.S. troops and off-limits to Koreans. American military police could arrest sex workers without health inspection cards, and U.S. doctors treated women with sexually transmitted diseases at detention centers given names such as “the monkey house.”
USA FASCISM: Two Party Dictatorship
* "3 Ways The Parties Have Diminished Your Power at the Ballot Box" (2015-10-23, ivn.us) [archive.is/W7oMb]
* "Virginia Republicans Admit They Rigged The State’s Congressional Districts To Elect GOP Lawmakers" (2015-10-01, thinkprogress.org) [http://is.gd/MX4L4J]
* "Neocon House Speaker Paul Ryan. Gutting Social Programs, More Spending for Wars" (2015-10-30, by Stephen Lendman) [archive.is/7WQpL]
* "Hillary Clinton's Take on Banks Won't Hold Up; The Democratic frontrunner seems to be counting on America's ignorance about the 2008 crash" (2015-10-14, by Matt Taibbi) [archive.is/y3qPy]
* "Republicans Expose Obama’s College Plan as Plot to Make People Smarter" (2015-01-09, newyorker.com) [archive.is/8oSPg]
* "I'll be the judge of that: How Jeb Bush perpetuated the Sunshine State's war on Black voters" (2015-10-30, motherjones.com) [archive.is/WGbUc]. The huge number of ex-felon African Americans in Florida kept from voting even after they do their time frequently makes the difference in who wins and who loses.
USA FASCISM: State Media Watch
* "Reviving the 'Liberal Media' Myth" (20105-11-02, by Robert Parry, consortiumnews.com) [archive.is/SoJDr]
In the following example, The Star Tribune, a monopolist newspaper, publishes propaganda which declares a certain segment of online journals as paid agents of an enemy of the USA, and this article is given prominence in newspapers and certain "conservative" AM Talk Radio shows, and higher than average rankings on Google.com's search results.
Except it was not true!
* "Media beyond the mainstream: Syria's information wars; With today’s Internet, you must be especially wary about what you read" (2015-10-27, startribune.com) [archive.is/wGfgs] [begin excerpt]: Sample pro-Assad headlines: “Why Syrians Support Bashar al Assad,” “81% of Syrians Believe U.S. is to Blame for Isis,” “Letter from a Pro-Assad Syrian Resident of California.”
Who are these sites? Mint Press, Info Wars, the Anti-Media, Shadowproof, Media Roots, Counter Current News, SouthFront and Zero Hedge are among the alternative “news” organizations that provide no information on how they are funded or the names of a board. They variously describe themselves with words and phrases such as “independent,” “watchdog,” “citizen journalism,” “news from outside party lines,” and so on. [end excerpt]
One of the targeted journalists writes about the falsehood [archive.is/sNvy3].
* "Mint Press, Anti-Media, Counter Current News, and others implied to be on Assad’s payroll" (2015-10-29, thefifthcolumnnews.com) [archive.is/mDkO8] [begin excerpt]: I doubt there are any journalists at the sites listed above that support Assad’s government (most of them wouldn't support any government), they simply oppose US intervention. The US government has sought to overthrow Assad’s government since before the war began. The narrative being pushed by this article is that the only options are to allow the US to overthrow yet another government, or to support Assad. Those aren’t even remotely close to the only options. The author is identified as “Terry Burke, of St. Louis Park, is a volunteer for the Committee in Solidarity with the People of Syria.” If the author was truly in solidarity with the Syrian people, wouldn’t she want to see the war end? Wouldn’t it be better for the US to stop arming rebel groups that almost invariably end up defecting to the Islamic State?
The best part about the whole piece is that while the author is accusing the above sites of some agenda, she doesn’t even realize that she’s playing a part in someone else’s agenda. While I may just be a cut-rate journalist that writes for sites the author doesn’t want to call real news sites, I humbly ask your indulgence while I lay out how a real conflict of interest and agenda setting works.
Terry Burke is the author of the article. She is a volunteer with a very small organization. It’s unlikely that the StarTribune ran the piece to appeal to the built in audience of a group with a whopping 350 social media followers. It’s unlikely that the content, as dissected above, appealed to the editorial staff as ground-breaking. However, it does support regime change. The StarTribune seems to support this idea. Why? Who owns the StarTribune? Glen Taylor. Who is Glen Taylor? He’s the billionaire that owns Taylor Corp. What is Taylor Corp? The part that is relevant is that it’s the company that gives hundreds of thousands of dollars to the Republican Party. Glen Taylor was at one time a Republican State Senator. Destabilizing Assad is a Republican dream. It began under President Bush in 2006. Why are the Republicans so supportive of this idea? Money. The defense industry that will make billions off of the war has bought the Republican party with campaign contributions. The industry has spent more than $1,323,900,000 lobbying federal officials since 2006. All of the top ten recipients of the money in 2016, with the notable exception of Hillary Clinton, are Republicans.
When trying to establish a conflict of interest, you have to actually show where it might exist. You can’t just jump and down like petulant child screaming “they take donations” or “I can’t find where their funding comes from!”
While I believe that Burke truly believes she is acting in the best interests of the Syrian people, I would point out that regime change in Iraq cost about half a million lives. She doesn’t have all of the facts, and because of this she is condemning hundreds of thousands of people to death. [end excerpt]
The reason why television news programs have similar "pundits":
* "Study: Being an angry white male is key to being influential; 'Women might not have the same opportunity for influence when they express anger,' said study co-author Jessica Salerno" (2015-10-26, UPI Newswire) [archive.is/ZSubE]
* "LA Times and Big Oil team up on oil industry propaganda website" (2015-10-31, by Dan Bacher, Indybay.org Newswire) [archive.is/BncpK]
USA FASCISM: Artificial Poverty and Starvation
* "New York Times Discovers Courts Have Been Privatized – 20 Years Too Late" (2015-11-04, wallstreetonparade.com) [archive.is/mm53p] [begin excerpt]: The New York Times has just completed a three-part investigative series on the evisceration across America of the U.S. Constitution’s guarantee of a right to a jury trial under the Seventh Amendment, which mandates: “In suits at common law, where the value in controversy shall exceed twenty dollars, the right of trial by jury shall be preserved, and no fact tried by a jury, shall be otherwise reexamined in any court of the United States, than according to the rules of the common law.”
Just as corporate prisons and corporate charter schools are proliferating across the American landscape with attendant horror stories, the doors to the Nation’s taxpayer funded courts have been largely closed to the average citizen. Consumers of everything from credit cards to phone service to nursing homes cannot obtain the product or service without surrendering their access to the U.S. court system through fine print buried in the corporate contract. The privatized system is referred to as pre-dispute arbitration or mandatory arbitration or forced arbitration. Many corporations impose it as a condition of employment as well.
The Times writes:
“Over the last 10 years, thousands of businesses across the country — from big corporations to storefront shops — have used arbitration to create an alternate system of justice. There, rules tend to favor businesses, and judges and juries have been replaced by arbitrators who commonly consider the companies their clients, The Times found.”
The Times, admirably, exposed a litany of abuses in rigged arbitration proceedings that left people worse off than before the arbitration. As Debbie Brenner of Peoria, Arizona tells The Times, “It was a kangaroo court. I can’t believe this is America.” Brenner’s case against a corporate run school for surgical technicians over failing to deliver on its promises was heard by a lawyer from the roster of arbitrators hearing cases for the American Arbitration Association (AAA), Dennis Negron. The proceeding was conducted in the corporate law offices of the firm representing the corporate school. [end excerpt]
* "It’s expensive to be poor; Why low-income Americans often have to pay more" (2015-09-05, economist.com) [archive.is/3yLVh]
* "White middle-aged people in US dying quicker than in any other developed nation – Princeton study" (2015-11-03, rt.com) [archive.is/2h7Dz]
Sometimes, the only industry in an area offering employment to local people are the service industry, specifically fastfood, and once this industry is robotized, many who rely on this form of employment will lose financial solvency.
* "Hamburger-making machine churns out custom burgers at industrial speeds" (2012-11-25, gizmag.com) [http://is.gd/HJXk4n]
* "This Robot-Run Indoor Farm Can Grow 10 Million Heads Of Lettuce A Year; This massive Japanese vegetable factory saves water and energy—along with human labor" (2015-10-11, by Adele Peters, solidarityeconomy.net) [archive.is/KPq1x]
* "Chinese Factory Loses 90% Of Its Workforce To Robots" (2015-08-02, by Joshua Krause activistpost.com) [archive.is/x0LOR]
WORLD FASCISM WATCH
Documenting the global economic dictatorship
* "US Uses Oil as a Political Weapon - German Newspaper; German newspaper Die Welt believes that the United States' decision to start selling oil from their strategic reserves amounts to a growing resource war against Russia, Saudi Arabia and Iran" (2015-11-03, sputniknews.com) [archive.is/enKan]
* "Western-Style "Democracy" Must Not Be Accepted" (2015-10-31, rodong.rep.kp) [archive.is/cor3N]: Wars and bloodshed are steadily breaking out in various countries and regions which accepted the western-style "democracy".
The imperialists are entirely to blame for all these happenings as they abuse democracy as a means for attaining their sinister purpose.
They use "democracy" as a lever for interfering in the internal affairs of other countries and infringing upon national sovereignty.
They unreasonably assert that western-style "democracy" is the most universal one to be accepted by the world in a bid to interfere in the internal affairs of other countries. They are forcing "liberalization" and "polycentrism" in the field of ideology and politics, taking issue with economy, education, culture, diplomatic policy, etc. of other countries.
While calling into question the social system and politics of other countries, they employ the method of bringing down a sovereign state with huge armed forces involved, talking about "offer of democracy" when an opportunity presents itself.
Their trumpeting about "democracy" is a curtain raiser to the interference in the internal affairs of other countries and war of aggression against them.
The anti-imperialist independent countries and those countries which pursue progressive politics are principal targets of vicious interference in their internal affairs being perpetrated by the imperialists under the signboard of "democracy."
It is the lesson taught by history and reality that if a country and nation accept western-style "democracy," taken in by hypocrisy and pressure of the imperialists, they are bound to go to ruin.
WORLD FASCISM WATCH: Weapons for a New World Order
* "Hypersonic Space Plane Set to Revolutionize How We Move Through the Cosmos; One of Britain’s most promising space plane technology companies has just secured investment for what may mark a turning point for the future of air transportation: a non-expendable unmanned hypersonic aircraft capable of operating in space at 25 times the speed of sound" (2015-11-03, sputniknews.com) [archive.is/3I0iF]
* "Lockheed Martin develops laser weapon turret for aircraft" (2015-10-16, UPI Newswire) [archive.is/dF2Sg]
* "Google 'Loon' Internet balloons to take flight over Indonesia" (2015-10-29, phys.org) [archive.is/UwZoL]
* "iRobot receives IDIQ contracts with total potential value of $96 Million from U.S. Navy" (2015-10-05, media.irobot.com) [archive.is/ZusH0]
* "Marines experiment with robot capabilities; The U.S. Marine Corps has conducted conducted experiments on the capabilities of a prototype quadruped robot" (2015-09-18, UPI Newswire) [archive.is/DlYQC]
* "New Report on Energy-Efficient Computing, the Result of Jointly Funded Workshop by SRC and NSF, Aligns with Nanotechnology Grand Challenge and National Strategic Computing Initiative; Report outlines key factors limiting progress in computing—particularly related to energy consumption—and novel device and architecture research that can overcome these barriers" (2015-10-20, src.org) [archive.is/Y8Qjw]
* "Waterloo researchers create technology to produce lighter, long-lasting batteries from silicon" (2015-10-26, uwaterloo.ca) [archive.is/lEbGN]
* "Synthetic Batteries for the Energy Revolution; Chemists of Jena University present an innovative redox-flow battery based on organic polymers and water" (2015-10-21, uni-jena.de) [archive.is/XHRKY]
* "Water heals a bioplastic" (2015-09-01, news.psu.edu) [archive.is/0J1IZ] [begin excerpt]: A drop of water self-heals a multiphase polymer derived from the genetic code of squid ring teeth, which may someday extend the life of medical implants, fiber-optic cables and other hard to repair in place objects, according to an international team of researchers. "What's unique about this plastic is the ability to stick itself back together with a drop of water," said Melik Demirel, professor of engineering science and mechanics, Penn State. "There are other materials that are self healing, but not with water." [end excerpt]
* "Printing lightweight, flexible, and functional materials; Multimaterial 3D printing via active mixing and switching printheads" (2015-09-21, seas.harvard.edu) [archive.is/8QEk9]
* "Photons open the gateway for quantum networks" (2015-10-23, nbi.ku.dk) [archive.is/BAPVy] [begin excerpt]: There is tremendous potential for new information technology based on light (photons). Photons (light particles) are very well suited for carrying information and quantum technology based on photons – called quantum photonics, will be able to hold much more information than current computer technology. But in order to create a network with photons, you need a photon contact, a kind of transistor that can control the transport of photons in a circuit. Researchers at the Niels Bohr Institute in collaboration with researchers from the Korea Institute of Science and Technology have managed to create such a contact. The results are published in the scientific journal Nature Communications. [end excerpt]
* "Robot's influent speaking just to get attention from you; Dynamically adapting robot's utterance and body language based on subtle human cues" (2015-10-22, Toyohashi University of Technology) [archive.is/rLFXk]
* "MIT system outperforms human intuition with algorithms" (2015-10-17, UPI Newswire) [archive.is/DAztr]
* "MIT's egg-clutching robot has soft but steady hands; Researchers at MIT are experimenting with robots built from non-traditional materials like paper and synthetic fibers -- so-called soft robots" (2015-09-30, UPI Newswire) [archive.is/TYqAb]
* "A light touch: Embedded optical sensors could make robotic hands more dexterous; Carnegie Mellon Creates Sensor-rich Robotic Hand and New Stretchable Sensor" (2015-09-28, cmu.edu) [archive.is/6M5MR]
* "Dive of the RoboBee; Harvard Microrobotics Lab develops first insect-size robot capable of flying and swimming" (2015-10-21, seas.harvard.edu) [archive.is/rE4Sd]
WORLD FASCISM WATCH: #OPDeathEaters [WorldFascists.blogspot.com]
* " ‘Harvard of Pimp School’: Milwaukee Exposed as Hotbed of Sex Trafficking; Following a massive FBI sting in Milwaukee last month, during which nine minors were rescued from sexual exploitation, the city has now tied with Las Vegas for third highest number of youth rescued during FBI raids in the United States" (2015-11-03, sputniknews.com) [archive.is/qmPtz]