Thursday, February 28, 2013

Repeal the Sequester to disarm Republican Hostage Takers

Repeal Sequestration to Disarm Hostage Takers
AFL-CIO Executive Council Calls for Repeal of Sequestration to Disarm the Republican Hostage Takers
Repeal Sequestration to Disarm Hostage Takers
by Jackie Tortora
The AFL-CIO Executive Council today called on Congress to repeal - not replace - the economically destructive budget cuts that Republicans in Congress are using as leverage to demand Social Security, Medicaid and Medicare benefit cuts. If the sequester is to be replaced, in whole or in part, the council called for closing tax loopholes for Wall Street and the wealthiest 2%, which would minimize harm to the economy.   
In its statement, No More Manufactured Crises - Disarm the Hostage Takers, the council said:
The solution is to disarm the hostage takers so they no longer can hold the economy hostage to get their way. Disarming the hostage takers means repealing "sequestration" - not replacing it. Across-the-board cuts would increase unemployment and harm the economy, but so would replacement cuts of the same size.
There is no economic need to replace "sequestration" or meet any arbitrary deficit reduction target. Further fiscal austerity before the United States returns to full employment only would weaken the economy and cost jobs. If the "sequester" is to be replaced, it should be replaced in a way that minimizes drag on the economy - which is by raising additional revenues from the wealthiest households and corporations. Since January 2011, 70 percent of deficit reduction has been through discretionary spending cuts, which is an important reason why the recovery has been so sluggish. Under no circumstances should the "sequester" be replaced by furloughs for federal employees, who already have sacrificed $103 billion to reduce the deficit.
The Executive Council statement also called on Congress once again to reject Republican ransom demands to cut Social Security, Medicaid and Medicare benefits, which would only encourage more hostage taking.
"[G]iving in to the ransom demands of the hostage takers - and giving them political cover - will not put an end to these manufactured crises. On the contrary, it will only encourage more hostage taking. The only solution is to disarm the hostage takers and allow the American people to decide for themselves - without bullying or threats or coercion or backroom deals - whether they want to cut Social Security, Medicaid and Medicare benefits to pay for tax breaks for Wall Street and the wealthiest 2% of Americans.
The statement argues that only by standing up to the hostage takers and taking away their leverage can we "focus on the urgent challenge of fixing the economy, raising wages, investing in our people and putting America back to work."
Read the rest of the statement here

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Election 2012- Rise up and Rebel

‘Demographics’ Are Not Simply Passive Numbers, They Also Often Rise Up and Rebel

Bill Fletcher, Jr.
Date of Source: 
Saturday, February 23, 2013
Feb 22, 2013 – Leading up to November 6, I found myself focused on the matter of voter suppression and electoral shenanigans committed by the Republicans. This concern was not for nothing. Prior to and on Election Day there were myriad attempts to subvert the vote, particularly the vote of people of color. Frivolous voter challenges started well before Election Day itself, again targeting African American and Latino voters.
What was most striking about the 2012 election, then, was that in the face of this attack on our right to vote, there was something akin to a popular revolt by the African American and Latino electorate. Latinos voted over 70% for Obama and African Americans over 93%. But those figures do not tell enough. It was the turnout that was so significant.
Despite efforts by the political Right to dampen African American enthusiasm for Obama, using the issue of same-sex marriage, this tactic failed dismally. And Romney’s cynical anti-Latino approach, as evidenced during this primary campaign, came back to bite him in the rear.
It was more than this, however. It was something that you had to feel if you waited in line to vote.
I went three times to try to engage in early voting.
The first two times the line was out the building and I decided to return at a later date.
On the third time, I thought I had arrived early enough only to discover that the line started well within the building. I was on line for two hours, and this was early voting.
Around the USA, there were stories like that one — people standing in line for one to seven hours in order to vote.

Monday, February 25, 2013

Mass austerity protests hit Spain

Stupid Republican budget cuts make recession worse !

The White House apparently believes the best way to strengthen its hand in the upcoming “sequester” showdown with Republicans is to tell Americans how awful the spending cuts will be, and blame Republicans for them.
It won’t work. These tactical messages are getting in the way of the larger truth, which the President must hammer home: The Republicans’ austerity economics and trickle-down economics are dangerous, bald-faced lies.
Yes, the pending spending cuts will hurt. But even if some Americans begin to feel the pain when the cuts go into effect Friday, most won’t feel it for weeks or months, if ever.
Robert Reich

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Stop the budget cuts. Act today

On March 1, new federal cuts will begin to take effect.  If nothing is done, many hundreds of thousands of people will be hurt by across-the-board cuts to education, job training, home heating assistance, public health, and social services, to name only a few areas.   You can see a sampling of the impact in fact sheets for every state and for the U.S.   Such as:  Up to 125,000 families and 100,000 formerly homeless people losing their housing (or having to pay much more), 600,000 young children and moms losing WIC nutrition aid, 70,000 children denied Head Start, nearly 76,000 people with disabilities losing Voc. Rehabilitation services, 373,000 adults and children with serious mental illness losing treatment.
       These fact sheets provide powerful reasons why Congress should stop the mindless cuts.   Your voice is needed.  Click here for a simple way to be heard.

It is very possible that Congress will not come up with an alternative by March 1, and the sequestration cuts will begin Members of Congress will only agree to protect human needs programs, raise revenues, and make sensible savings in the Pentagon, if they hear from constituents saying that's the right thing to do.  Clickhere to send letters to your Rep. and Senators.
Coalition for Human Needs. Oppose the budget cuts.

Sacramento PA is aligned with the Coalition on Human Needs.

Monday, February 18, 2013

David Bacon, Immigration speaker

David Bacon.  Journalist, photo journalist, labor journalist, immigrant rights activist. Speaking Feb. 20, 2013.  2013.  Hinde auditorium.  Sacramento State. 1:30 PM.
Sponsored by the Serna Center.

David Bacon
We need an immigration policy based on human, civil and labor rights, which looks at the reasons why people come to the U.S., and how we can end the criminalization of their status and work.  While proposals from Congress and the administration have started the debate over the need for change in our immigration policy, they are not only too limited and ignore the global nature of migration, but they will actually make the problem of criminalization much worse.  We need a better alternative.

Coming in 2013 from Beacon Press:
THE RIGHT TO STAY HOME:  Ending Forced Migration and the Criminalization of Immigrants

DISPLACED, UNEQUAL AND CRIMINALIZED - A Report for the Rosa Luxemburg Foundation on the political economy of immigration

Monday, February 11, 2013

Thursday, February 7, 2013