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Join us in Albany, New York!
July 23-25, 2010
The National Conference to Bring the Troops Home Now will take place against the backdrop of major developments in the U.S. and throughout the world.
The globe is aflame with unending wars, threats of new wars and horrendous sanctions against Iran, atrocious attacks on innocent Freedom Flotillas bringing humanitarian aid to the beleaguered Palestinians of Gaza, and with an unprecedented corporate-driven environmental catastrophe.
One of the many destructive legacies of the Reagan Era was the effective Washington consensus that wars and other military spending exist on their own fiscal planet. Reagan got a Dixiecrat Congress to double military spending at a time when the U.S. was not at war (unless you were a poor person in Central America.) Meanwhile, Reagan got the Dixiecrat Congress to cut domestic spending - we just couldn't afford those costly social programs. Reagan pretended the two things were totally unrelated, and the Dixiecrat Congress went along.
We're bicycling from San Francisco to Washington, DC between 24-July and 22-Sept, 2010, without motorized support. Cynthia McKinney, six term Member of Congress and 2008 Green Party nominee for President, is riding. The ride will demonstrate the bicycle as a transformational tool to solve the problems of Climate Change, Oil Wars, the Health Crisis, and the Economic Crunch. Along the way, riders will facilitate community discussions around the question "How can we support each other to live true to our best values?"
We're now learning more people plan to converge with us in Washington, DC, for World Car-Free Day. Malik Rahim, co-founder of Common Ground will be riding up with a group from New Orleans and Atlanta. Others will ride from Seattle/Portland, Boston/New York, and Toronto/Detroit/Boston. Lots of folks will ride in from Virginia, Maryland, and Delaware or bring their bike by mass transit to meet at the Capitol 10:00 AM on Wed-22-Sept,2010.
Our route, schedule, and discussion group are open to anybody with a free Google account. Please join us. If you would like to bicycle all or part of the route, plan a convergence ride, or host riders passing through your community, please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. Please forward this and re-post to others who might be interested.
June 17, 2010 As federal officers took their time searching Paul Giovanni de la Rosa's silver minivan, a steady stream of motorists passed by, unaware that anything beyond a routine inspection was happening at the side of the road.
Dave Obey slows war funding, reports Politico:
House Appropriations Chairman Dave Obey said he will hold off on new Afghanistan war funding until there is some resolution of a long-delayed economic relief bill extending aid to states and the jobless as well as tax breaks for individuals and business.
With a July 4th Pentagon deadline looming, the chairman's new posture is a blow to the White House and more than ever, explicitly links war funding with liberal concerns over domestic priorities.
Thank him and encourage him never to let this war escalation funding through. Holding up the war funding until schools and jobs are funded is fine, but ask Chairman Obey to use the war funding to fund the schools and jobs instead.
Give Dave Obey a quick call right now! (202) 225-3365
UPDATE: Let Obey know that the Wisconsin Democratic Party says stop funding war!
We're going to make sure there are no backroom deals that effectively gut the best reforms currently in the bill -- we've launched "Call-in Days for the Big 3 No Bailouts Reforms" (over at anwf.org) to put every decision maker in the spotlight for gutting or keeping the Big 3. We have 14 days until June 24 to influence the financial reform bill to be something worth passing. So, on Tuesday (6/15), Wednesday (6/16), and Thursday (6/17), please help us get enough people so it's like we're walking right into the backroom with them and slapping their hands if they do something bad. We'll update our list on the slimiest and worst on financial reform. See the list below.
Sign up for a day that works for you -- you just need a 5 minute chunk of time free -- and we'll make your call effortless. If you've already signed up, thank you. You've come to the right place. Add what you find out on your calls in the comments here, as soon as we hear back from you, we'll update who is acting the sleaziest (you can also report back at #finreg #save716 on twitter).
We need to call as much as each of us can to stop government support and incentives for banks to become bigger and riskier - this is structural reform.
WHAT'S HAPPENING IN THE LAST LEG OF FINANCIAL REFORM?
The financial reform bill is going into the final stage in the legislative process this week and bought-out members of Congress are trying to stealthily remove all the provisions in it that the big banks oppose. The financial reform bill would be a pure product of lobbying and big banking if it were not for the just a handful of "No Bailout Reforms" that are still in the bill as we speak. Can you join us in making sure that conferees don't gut the strongest provisions in the financial reform bill behind closed doors?
A full whip list for derivatives reform is here. We need your help finding out where people stand.
This Wednesday in C'ville: One Event & Every Issue
War and Peace, Crime and Justice, Budget Priorities, Freedom of Assembly, Local and National Politics
You don't want to miss this!
This Wednesday at noon in Charlottesville, and simultaneously in 100 congressional districts around the country, Americans will hold Brown Bag Lunch Vigils against further war funding, including the proposed $33.5 billion to fund an escalation in Afghanistan.
Israeli Lies Exposed: Smuggled Clip Shows IDF Executing Injured Activist (Possibly the American Furkan Dogan)
By Dave Lindorff
The false narrative initially put out by the Israeli government of hapless IDF commandos severely threatened by hardened "terrorists" on the Mavi Marmara has fallen apart, amid revelations of doctored photos, dubbed voices and other deceptions and the patent absurdity of the claim that the commandos had boarded the ship armed only with "paint guns" and low-caliber pistols. Now the Big Lie stands fully exposed, thanks to a smuggled-out video showing IDF commandos kicking a prone, helpless victim and then executing him with semi-automatic rifle fire.
This smuggled video, showing IDF commandos brutally kicking their captive, who is clearly posing no threat to them, and then firing four shots down at him from almost point blank range, proves these commandos were on the ship with intent to kill and injure, and that is what they did.
Until quite recently, it seemed that Turkey had a clearly defined role in the Middle East, from the standpoint of U.S. policy. They were the "good Muslims," who were part of NATO, who contributed troops to U.S. wars, and who had good relations with Israel.
It is vital that a large crowd appear at the White House today (Tuesday) to protest the Israeli Navy commando attack on the Gaza Flotilla, the killing of about 9 activists, the wounding of about 30, and the abduction of the rest of the 700 passengers. In international waters. The world is watching.
These are our demands to the administration and Congress:
1. Publicly condemn the attack on civilian ships in international waters
2. Demand that Israel immediately release the names of all those killed, injured, and being detained
3. Recall the United States ambassador from Israel
4. Pending the outcome of a thorough investigation, cancel all aid, financial and military, to Israel
The coalition includes:
Israeli criminal navy attacks humanitarian ships in international waters. Reports of 10-16 humanitarian activists killed and 50-60 injured. Ships taken to Haifa to avoid press at Ashdod. By now you have probably heard of this atrocity. CodePink, WIAMEP, DCMetroBDS, ANSWER and others are asking all who can to assemble at the Israeli Embassy, 3514 International Drive NW (VAN NESS METRO STOP) at 3pm TODAY, moving to the White House at 5pm.
If you can join either of both of these protests, please assemble with us. (On board were Ambassador Edward Peck from Chevy Chase, Huwaida from DC, Col. Ann Wright, and an elderly Holocaust survivor). We have a communication blackout on how they are doing. One of the ships was an American flagship.)
Use Memorial Day to memorialize all the brave activists, show our outrage, and let the world know we are not sleeping! PLEASE SPREAD THE WORD AS WIDELY AS YOU CAN. Call Joan to add your organization's support for these actions.
Joan Stallard ------------ Nora Bawa
202-248-2093 home ----------- 202 244-5357
- Contact the White House
- Leave a comment on White House Facebook Page!
- Leave a comment on Barack Obama's Facebook Page!
- Leave a comment on Joe Biden's Facebook Page!
- US State Dept: (202) 647-4000
- Secretary of State Clinton: (202) 647-5291
- Israeli Embassy, Washington, DC: (202) 364-5500
- International listing of other Israeli embassies
MONDAY 31 MAY 2.00PM
MAY 29 MARCH AGAINST HATE IN ARIZONA
On Saturday May 29th, people will converge on Phoenix, Ariz., from around the United States, to march against SB1070. Progressive Democrats of America (PDA) is joining with the National Day Laborer Organizing Network and Puente Arizona in pressuring the Arizona legislature to repeal, and the U.S. President to nullify, this new Arizona law, which mandates racial and ethnic profiling.
Mimi Kennedy, National Chair of Progressive Democrats of America, will be speaking at Saturday's event, along with AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka, Co-founder of United Farm Workers Dolores Huerta, International Executive Vice President of SEIU Eliseo Medina, Congressman Luis Gutierrez of Illinois, and Congressman Raul Grijalva of Arizona.
A rally with live music and speeches will begin at 8 a.m., May 29, at Indian Steele Park (Corner of 3rd Street and Indian School Rd), Phoenix, AZ.
A 5-mile march will depart at 10:30 a.m. and arrive at the state capitol (1700 West Washington, Phoenix, AZ) at 1:30 p.m. for a second rally with live music and speeches.
This week, PDA posted online an interview of Congressman Grijalva by PDA National Director Tim Carpenter in which Grijalva said he supports targeted economic sanctions aimed at conventions in his own state. Included in the same podcast is an interview of Dan O'Neal, PDA Arizona Coordinator, who discusses plans for the May 29th march against what he describes as "apartheid Arizona." While O'Neal supports a boycott of Arizona, he urges everyone who can to come to Arizona on the 29th to join in the protest.
The full audio of this podcast is available online here.
Missy Comley Beattie
I’ve been thinking of marketing a concept in the genre that’s all the rage—Reality Television. My primary objective is to enlighten the public, however if financial success is a byproduct, I won’t complain.
This I know: engaging the masses requires much more than the presentation of truth. Truth must be veiled in entertainment, the latter a lure to hold attention until the truth, finally, is grasped through (gasp) an epiphany. And, yes, I do believe I’ve come up with something that delivers both.
Here’s the idea: I’m imagining a show whose contestants are troops who’ve returned from AfPak-Iraq. My production crew could go to any military hospital’s traumatic brain injury (TBI) ward to seek competitors for the series. I’m talking Dancing with the Scarred. We’d have Hollywood types work with the young men and women to teach them some dance moves and create fabuloso costumes.
UPDATE 5/27 5:00 pm: House Appropriations Committee Hearing Postponed. (Now let's change postponed to canceled!)
UPDATE 5/27 12:30 pm: Ray McGovern asks David Obey to Listen to David Obey, and Obey plans to include the schools money, which may mean Republicans vote No, which would mean we only need 40 Democrats.
UPDATE 5/27 11:30 am: Senate now voting overwhelmingly against requesting a non-specified non-binding timetable for eventually leaving Afghanistan.
UPDATE: House Appropriations Committee mark-up starts at 5 p.m. and may run late, Thursday, in room 2359 Rayburn House Office Building: webcast.
The Senate is voting now, the House Appropriations committee tomorrow, and the full House after June 7. This means we need to be phoning senators today. But the House remains our best chance. So call these members of the Appropriations Committee now. And call your own representative this week, and plan to meet them in person next week.
House Appropriations Committee Members to Call:
Chairman David Obey (202) 225-3365
Sam Farr, California (202) 225-2861
Michael Honda, California (202) 225-2631
Marcy Kaptur, Ohio (202) 225-4146
Barbara Lee, California (202) 225-2661
José E. Serrano, New York (202) 225-4361
How to reach your representative and your two senators:
Capitol Hill Switchboard: (202) 224-3121
Keep track of where your representative stands at
photo by James Nord
What to say:
If you do not try to block the war escalation funding, I will try to block your reelection in November. If you support peace, I will support you. Please commit publicly to voting No, no matter what nice things that could be passed separately are packaged into the same vote. Please join the 58 congressional candidates from every political party who have signed a statement against war spending at http://caws.us. Also ask them to support the War Is Making You Poor Act, and support it yourself.
Draft version of the bill: PDF.
Congressional Candidates Opposing War Spending Now Include Republicans, Democrats, Libertarians, Greens, Independents, and Socialists
Fifty-eight congressional candidates and 20 activist organizations are opposing any more funding for the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, and inviting more candidates, incumbents, and organizations to join them. The 58 candidates, from 25 different states, include 19 Democrats, 18 Greens, 17 Libertarians, 2 Independents, 1 Republican, and 1 Socialist (and more may be added to the website by the time you read this). Forty-nine are candidates for the U.S. House of Representatives, and nine for the Senate.
Keep the Pressure On! Your Voice Counts!
The Senate is scheduled to start debate on the supplemental today! Now is the time to make the calls to your senator! The Senate is expected to vote on the budget request this week, and possibly even as early as Monday. The House is expected to vote after the Memorial Day break.
We want continued pressure on them to:
* Vote NO on funding the supplemental $33 billion for the DOD to deploy additional troops to Afghanistan - to a situation risking the lives of our loved ones and innocent civilians in Afghanistan for no increase in our peace or safety. You live this reality and your Senator needs to hear from you! Bring Our Troops Home Now!
* Let your Senator know that you want the funding for this war stopped. Separate the war funding from the beneficial components of the Supplemental Appropriations Bill - WE WANT NO MORE TROOPS IN THIS WAR!
* Ask them to support Senator Feingold's Amendment that will offer language similar to S. 3197 including a "flexible timetable" for the withdrawal of American troops from Afghanistan.
Call today - it takes 5 minutes and your voice counts!
Call TOLL FREE 888-543-5234 and ask to be connected to your Representative, and your Senators' offices. To identify your Congressmen and Senator go to http://www.contactingthecongress.org/.
Available on the MFSO Website: Hand Outs for Memorial Day Commemorations
If you are attending community events this Memorial Day weekend, we have provided a half-sheet handout for you to use to get our message out to the broadest possible audience. You can access the PDF version of the handout at our MFSO website here. If you would like a Word version to edit with your local contact information, please contact Nikki Morse at email@example.com.
Whether the nominee’s views as a justice would reflect the positions she has taken as a solicitor general is admittedly unclear. Indeed, the roles of senior Justice Department officials and Supreme Court justices hold little in common.
Take Action, Bay Ridge NY: Protest Afghan War Funding Saturday 5/22/2010 Noon-2 PM at Congressman Michael McMahon's Office
1,000 American & over 18,000 Afghan Deaths in Afghanistan
Join us. Congressman McMahon has consistently voted for funding for the Middle East wars and for sanctions against Iran.
Peace Action Bay Ridge
Flyer attached to download for posting and distribution.
Take Action: Environmental Activist Facing Prison Time For A Banner Drop As Massey Murders & BP Kills Gulf Environment
Now Ted [Glick] is facing up to three years in jail. Based on the [DC] judge's comments last week, it really does appear that he will be incarcerated for at least a month or two.
Please read and view more below and write letters to:
Judge Frederick H. Weisberg
DC Superior Court
500 Indiana Ave., NW
Washington, DC 20001
This from Mike Tidwell, asking that we protest Ted's incarceration AND sign the petition to stop offshore drilling...
Despite the Gulf disaster, no one from BP has been arrested and sent to jail. Despite safety violations at coal mines, no one from Massey Energy has been handcuffed. But today I write to inform you that one of America's best global warming activists is probably facing several months of jail. He's been convicted by a D.C. jury, and now he awaits sentencing on July 6th. Why? Because he peacefully dropped two banners on Capitol Hill that said: "GREEN JOBS NOW" and "GET TO WORK."
I'm not joking. Ted Glick of the Chesapeake Climate Action Network was convicted by a jury May 13th of peacefully dropping the banners inside the U.S. Senate Hart Office Building last September. The DC U.S. Attorney's office clearly has decided to make an "example" of Ted because of his previous two -- count 'em, two -- convictions related to peaceful acts of climate civil disobedience. Can you believe it? You can see a three-minute video of Ted's September "crime" right above. He's the guy toward the end simply lowering the banners. Period.
Now Ted is facing up to three years in jail. Based on the judge's comments last week, it really does appear that he will be incarcerated for at least a month or two.
So here's what you can do:
Call for Support of Soldiers Returning from Afghanistan
Advertising Sought to Let Soldiers Know About our Services
Around 10,000 soldiers will be returning to Fort Lewis from Iraq and Afghanistan over the next three months. These soldiers will be bringing home with them their cumulative experiences from an entire year of combat experiences. According to the Department of Defense, one in three of these soldiers will have post-traumatic stress disorder. This will undoubtedly manifest itself in the form of domestic violence, drunk driving, drug use, suicide, and violent crime. These members of our community will be in need of services that the Army does not provide.
Coffee Strong is gearing up to prepare to help these returning soldiers. We staff GI rights counselors, make referrals to mental health counseling, and Veterans Benefits Advocates. We provide links to services in the community for soldiers, veterans, and military family members. But this will all be for not if we fail to reach the military community to let them know that these services exist.
We need to advertise to ensure that returning soldiers utilize these services. We must raise $6,000 now to take out ads in local papers. Without your support this will not happen. We need your contribution to ensure that any soldier who needs help will get it, and many are denied services due them. Together we can save lives and make sure that no one falls through the cracks because nobody is there to listen.
It's common practice in America. A government-Wall Street cabal caused the financial crisis and subsequent fallout. Now debated financial reform is a stealth scheme to let bankers self-regulate. Rogue Democrats rammed through health reform to ration care and enrich corporate providers. Defense, technology, and related firms profit hugely from permanent wars, and a regulatory-free Washington - energy industry alliance lies at the root of the Gulf disaster, by far America's greatest ever environmental calamity, worsening daily with no fail-safe, or perhaps any, way to stop it.
Alarming reports show "Scientists are finding enormous oil plumes in the deep waters of the Gulf of Mexico, including one as large as 10 miles long, 3 miles wide and 300 feet thick in spots. The discovery" shows that BP and the Obama administration lied about the incident's severity, and they're still lying.
According to University of Georgia researcher Samantha Joye, "There's a shocking amount of oil in the deep water, relative to" what's visible on the surface, the tip of a big and growing iceberg, this one containing oil. "There's a tremendous amount of oil in multiple layers, three or four or five layers deep in the water column."
Worse still, it's depleting Gulf oxygen, prompting fears about killing sea life in the effected areas and permanently destroying the livelihood of area fisherman who supply 20% of the nation's supply.
Already since April 20, oxygen levels are down 30%, a pace that if maintained "could draw (it) down to very low levels that are dangerous to animals in a couple of months. This is alarming."
Even The Times admits the daily flow may be as high as 80,000 barrels (3.4 million gallons or the equivalent of an Exxon Valdez spill around every three days). Yet the Obama administration and BP still claim only 5,000 barrels a day, and company officials won't let scientists use sophisticated instruments to measure the output more accurately on the ocean floor. Clearly they have something to hide, but there's no way to suppress the growing ecological devastation once clear evidence substantiates it.
A National Conference to Bring the Troops Home Now! | July 23-25, 2010 | Crowne Plaza Hotel, Albany, New York
In these troubled times, Washingtons wars and occupations rage, resulting in an ever increasing number of dead and wounded and the destruction of countries posing no threat to the U.S. Trillions are spent on seemingly endless conflicts in pursuit of profits and global domination, while trillions more are lost by working people in loss of jobs, homes, pensions, health care, and cuts to social programs and public services. The U.S. goes to war to plunder the worlds fossil fuel resources, the unrestrained use of which threatens the future of our planet.
We must demand the immediate and total withdrawal of U.S. military forces, mercenaries and contractors from Afghanistan and Iraq, and the end to drone attacks on Pakistan, Afghanistan, and other countries and call for self-determination for the people of all countries. Moreover, we recognize that the Middle East cauldron today also encompasses Iran, Yemen, Palestine, and Israel, while countries in Latin America, the Caribbean, and Africa are targeted for intervention by a militarized U.S. foreign policy.
The urgency of the current world situation DEMANDS UNITY OF ACTION and purpose to generate the broad social movement we must create to not only end wars and occupations, but to fundamentally change the aggressive policies that inevitably lead our country to militarism, racism, and war. Our cry must be "Money for Human Needs; Not for Wars, Occupations, and Bail-Outs."
Come to a conference where peace, social justice and environmental activists will come together to discuss the major concerns we face and to hammer out an ambitious program of action. The time is long overdue for such a gathering.
Friday evening, July 23: Panel discussion on "Strategies & Tactics in the Struggle to End the Empires Wars and Occupations"; Presentation of Action Proposal
Saturday, July 24: Keynote Speakers; Workshops; Lunch panel on Government Repression, Defense of Political Prisoners, and Guantanamo Detainees; Plenary Discussion of Action Proposal, Amendments & Resolutions
Saturday evening, July 24: Public Forum with speakers & cultural performances
Sunday, July 25: Plenary Discussion and Vote on Action Proposal; Workshops
NOAM CHOMSKY, Internationally renowned political activist, author, and critic of U.S. foreign and domestic policies, MIT Professor Emeritus of Linguistics
DONNA DEWITT, President, South Carolina AFL-CIO; Co-Chair, South Carolina Progressive Network; Steering Committee, U.S. Labor Against the War; Administrative Body, National Assembly to End the Iraq and Afghanistan Wars and Occupations
Additional Speakers: Joel Kovel, Dahlia Wasfi, Leila Zand, Cheri Honkala, Medea Benjamin, Pardiss Kebriaei, Kathy Kelly, Michael Ferner, Kevin Martin, Michael McPhearson, Nada Khader, Larry Holmes, David Swanson, Glen Ford, Blanca Missé, Pam Africa, Cindy Sheehan, Fahima Vorgetts, Kathy Black, Debra Sweet (partial list)
RSVP for Transforming Catastrophe into Opportunity
A Conversation on Gulf Eco-Crime, Big Oil, & Carbon Tax as a Tool to Transition Off Fossil Fuels
- Antonia Juhasz - author of The Tyranny of Oil
- James Handley - CarbonTax.org, and
- Kathy Callan - Legislative Coordinator, PDA's Global Warming Issues Organizing Team
RSVP for Instructions to Join Conversation on Monday, May 10 at 5:30pm (Pacific) / 8:30pm (Eastern)
As we recoil in horror that not 1,000 - not 5,000 - BUT 25,000 barrels of oil per day are gushing into ocean waters poisoning the Gulf of Mexico, let us prepare for action. This is another "shock doctrine" moment - and it is up to us to seize it. On May 16, actions will be held in around the country. Don't you think it's time to shift the national dialogue away from Wall Street dependent solutions and time to assess fossil fuels for their true cost?
Backbone Campaign is organizing Monday's (5-10) Conversation with the Cabinet conference call/interview/webcast to help you channel your rage into action with the strongest possible demands. We have a moral obligation and a strategic opportunity to seize the debate and insist on real tools for the transition off fossil fuels and one of those tools is the Carbon Tax.