Below my signature is an article on Tackling Corporate Power, One Town at a Time by Mari Margil who works with the Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund. They are best known for working with Pennsylvanian towns to pass ordinances banning corporate farming. Now they are working with communities to ban corporations from drilling for natural gas in their communities using the fracking process. First the City of Pittsburg passed such an ordinance and now smaller communities in Maryland and New York are taking steps in the same direction – challenging corporate power in their communities and establishing the rights of local communities to establish health and safety standards for their people even in the face of state or federal regulations or laws designed to remove their power. Note that one of the objectives of MOVE TO AMEND in eliminating corporate personhood is to allow local communities exactly this power. (more…)
In an act of class warfare, Wednesday the Wisconsin Senate (with the Democrats still in self-imposed exile) cut the collective bargaining rights of public sector unions and the people responded immediately by poring an estimated 7000 protesters into the state capital building in Madison. So many people occupied the capital that the police gave up trying to stop them and as of 10 PM Wednesday evening the doors of the building were wide open. Many of those protesting the decision have called for a General Strike. The Republican Senate action would still need to be approved by the Wisconsin Assembly before becoming law.
Portland must respond. Below are notes on two upcoming public protests in Portland. WE MUST BE THERE!
Please forward this message.
| David Delk, President | Alliance for Democracy – Portland, 503.232.5495 | www.afd-pdx.org |
“SAVE THE AMERICAN DREAM” RALLY
“In our glorious fight for civil rights, we must guard against being fooled by false slogans as ‘right to work.’ It provides no ‘right’ and no ‘works.’ Its purpose is to destroy labor unions and the freedom of collective bargaining…We demand this fraud by stopped.”-Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
Dr King was on the front lines of the sanitation workers struggle in Memphis just before he was killed. He understood the struggle for union rights, civil rights, for human rights.
Today, he would be on the front lines in Wisconsin, Indiana and Ohio.
Now is the time to join the fight for Full and Fair Employment, quality public education, good jobs, strong communities, advanced manufacturing, a green economy and …the American Dream!
More info: jwjpdx.org, 503.236.5573
RALLY & MARCH OF JOBS AND BENEFITS, NOT CUTS
Saturday, April 16launch Noon at Pioneer Courthouse Square
Eight million jobs were lost in the 2008 meltdown. Today there are more than five jobs seekers for every job. Instead of creating jobs, Congress is focused on cutting the safety net!
Let’s stand up for community values:
- Create good jobs now.
- Stop job killing trade agreements.
- Protect and strengthen the safety net.
- Support collective bargaining as 15,000 workers lauch campaign for fairness at work in Portland.
- Wall Street should pay for the economic crisis, not working people!
Sponsored by Jobs with Justice, Alliance for Democracy, AFSCME Council 75 and Local 3135, Economic Justice Action Group of 1st Unitarian Church, Oregon Progressive Party, SEIU Local 49 and 503, Teamsters Local 206, flierLocal 555, Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom and more.
More info: jwjpdx.org, 503.236.5573
Printable flyer here.
The City of Portland is scheduled to vote on Thursday, Feb 24th as to whether it should rejoin the Joint Terrorism Task Force (JTTF). Portland had been a member until 2005 when it left due to several concerns including that the Portland police officers who were assigned to the force did not report to their superiors. Because of the lack of reporting, our police officiers were not subject to our oversight. Moving forward, our officers could be involved in monitoring and investigating Portland citizens and organizations based on religious or political views in violation of the Oregon State law. (more…)
And for more details on the agreement, the investor-protection clauses, what gets counted as an American made auto (made in America could mean made in China), how labor is treated in Korea, and how the agreement would impact the ability of both governments to gain control over their financial sectors, read this informative article by Lori Wallach, The Korea Trade Deal Is a Lose-Lose. Another article worth reading is this one by Ian Fletcher, Stop the Korea Free Trade Agreement. Read more by Ian on his blog.
While many of you will not be able to be there (I have to work), you can read the above information and write to the editor of the Oregonian (and your US Representative), explaining why you oppose this Bush written, now Obama pushed agreement. And that article by Ian has some good quotes from when Obama was on the campaign trail. At that time he was opposed to the agreement. (more…)
As the Egyptian people celebrate the downfall of their 30-year autocratic dictator, enabled for those 30-years by the generous foreign-aid (read: military aid) package from the United States, the rulers of America should think about what can happen when the democratic yearling of a people cannot find a way to express itself. The corporate rulers and their political enablers might want to look for some messages in what has happened. (more…)
President Obama promoted the Bush negotiated NAFTA style Korea (South) Free Trade Agreement during his State of the Union address. He said, “And last month, we finalized a trade agreement with South Korea that will support at least 70,000 American jobs. This agreement has unprecedented support from business and labor, Democrats and Republicans — and I ask this Congress to pass it as soon as possible.
“Now, before I took office, I made it clear that we would enforce our trade agreements, and that I would only sign deals that keep faith with American workers and promote American jobs. That’s what we did with Korea, and that’s what I intend to do as we pursue agreements with Panama and Colombia and continue our Asia Pacific and global trade talks.”
Note that he said that this agreement would support 70,000, not that that number would be created. (more…)
The Supreme Court’s Citizens United decision one year ago (January 21) opened the flood gates of direct corporate money into America’s elections. Prior to this decision, corporations had been banned under the Tillman Act of 1907 from using corporate funds to fund federal political campaigns. According to President Teddy Roosevelt in advocating for the corporate ban said, “All contributions by corporations to any political committee or for any political purpose should be forbidden by law; directors should not be permitted to use stockholders’ money for such purposes.” (more…)
President Obama will soon deliver his third State of the Union address. We need to be prepared to remind him following that address of the campaigns promises not kept, of the hope that is no longer felt by those middle class people who volunteered their time and gave their money to see that he was elected as the agent of change. Instead the wars drag on in Iraq and Afghanistan, with continuing killing of American soldiers as well as the people of those two nations. Since Obama assumed office, the war on terror has grown , expanding to Pakistan and Yemen. The wars continue to drain our economy, costing America over a trillion dollars in increased debt each year. All while we continue to suffer growing unemployment, and state and local governments face growing budget crises, growing ever larger with no aid from Washington. The states and cities now will be on their own. And Obama is set to explain that we all need to make sacrifices, that we are all responsible because we have expected too much., we have lived beyond our means. As he explains how we must share in making sacrifices, he will introduce another corporate driven free trade agreement, this one with South Korea which the federal U.S. International Trade Commission concluded would increase the US trade deficit. That increase, according to the Economic Policy Institute, will cost the US almost 160,000 jobs. . (more…)
Korea Free Trade Agreement
The Corporatist attacks on the rest of us are moving on several fronts, especially now with the new Congress in session.
One front will be the introduction of Bush the second’s so-called Free Trade Agreements with Korea, Panama and Congress. (more…)