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Insulting Workers, Coddling the Rich: Obama’s ‘Raise’ for Federal Workers is a Bad Joke

By Dave Lindorff


President Obama, five years late, decried the terrible income gap in the US, which has worsened during his years in the White House, and offered the puny “fix” of raising the minimum wage paid to employees working on federal projects from its current $7.25 to $10.10 per hour. This executive order, which could have been done when he took office in the depths of the Great Recession back in 2009 would be not immediate but would be phased in over the next three years.


Republicans Recycle Excuses: Christie's Defense Ties Bridgegate to Racial Profiling

By Linn Washington


New Jersey Governor Chris Christie’s Bridgegate defense of being misled by staff members resembles a defense advanced in 1999 by another once top Republican NJ official to distance himself from a his role in a contentious 1990s-era scandal that roiled the Garden State: racial profiling by NJ state troopers that targeted minorities for illegal enforcement.

Why Andy Shallal Should Be Mayor of D.C.

It would make a tremendous difference nationally and internationally to have a real activist, progressive, populist, and democrat as mayor of our nation's capital.  Imagine a leading opponent of war as mayor of the world center of war making.  Imagine major public initiatives to address the massive poverty and racial disparity in the headquarters of the greatest wealth machine on the planet.  Imagine the model set in Washington for school systems elsewhere based on public community schools rather than corporate commodification of mis-education. 

Imagine Congress forced to work in a place with living wage laws, wise environmental practices, free mass transit, perhaps a public bank -- a place where the quality of life rises for all and trickledown propaganda can't utter its first syllable without being mocked.  Imagine the home of the U.S. government as a living breathing counterexample to every acontextual ahistorical anti-intellectual claim for the benefits of violence over diplomacy, monopolistic capitalism over the social good, and brutal pigheadedness over civic engagement and innovation.

I hardly ever promote candidates.  We're not going to vote our way to peace and justice -- much less vote our way to clean, open, verifiable elections with public financing and free, fair media time.  But Washington, D.C., is actually a place where Andy Shallal has a chance to get himself elected.  He's in a 7-way race, and people want a newcomer. 

Andy Shallal! Most of you know who this is.  Andy has been a leading opponent of wars and militarism, of racism, and of extreme materialism.  Andy has testified before Congress, rallied crowds, and gone to jail for justice.  He's helped keep Northrop Grumman from living off DC taxpayers.  He's pushed for higher wages from Wal-Mart, and paid them at his own restaurants.  He's the owner of four -- soon to be six -- Busboys and Poets restaurants, the places where all the best organizations and campaigns find a free space to meet, strategize, communicate, and entertain -- spaces that always seem a bit more integrated by age, race, and background than anywhere else in DC.

Andy is not just a personality, not just a backstory, not just an aura or a brand name.  He has proposals ready to work on.  He wants a moratorium on school closings.  He wants money put back into the minimum wage (what's commonly and misleadingly called "raising" it).  He wants the voting age dropped to 17.  Andy is on the board of trustees of the Institute for Policy Studies.  That's like having your own cabinet already formed, but formed by geniuses and actual small-d democrats. 

I can think of another major city where a mayor was recently elected with great fanfare and great expectations, but the disappointments came quickly.  I don't know how that will work out, but I know that Andy won't disappoint. He also would not want public activist pressure to go away.  We'll need to pressure Andy and the D.C. City Council, we'll need to organize and educate and listen to and learn from our neighbors.  We'll need to keep doing what we do, but we'll do it with the mayor on our side, the mayor of an international city, a city with sister cities on every continent, a city with great influence on public discussion at home and abroad.

This is a campaign for us all, no matter where we live.

Andy is the guest this week on Talk Nation Radio.  Listen here.

His own website is at http://Andy4DC.org

I hate to say it, but we really need you to make a small or large contribution right here.

Talk Nation Radio: Andy Shallal on Why He Should Be Mayor of Washington D.C.

https://soundcloud.com/davidcnswanson/talk-nation-radio-andy-shallal

Andy Shallal is running for mayor of Washington, D.C. Learn more and support him at http://andy4dc.com

Total run time: 29:00

Host: David Swanson.
Producer: David Swanson.
Music by Duke Ellington.

Download from Archive or LetsTryDemocracy.

Pacifica stations can also download from AudioPort.

Syndicated by Pacifica Network.

Please encourage your local radio stations to carry this program every week!

Please embed the SoundCloud audio on your own website!

Past Talk Nation Radio shows are all available free and complete at
http://davidswanson.org/talknationradio

Stink Tanks: Historical Records Reveal State Policy Network Was Created by ALEC

Cross-Posted from DeSmogBlog

A 1991 report tracked down by DeSmogBlog from the University of California-San Francisco's Legacy Tobacco Documents reveals that the State Policy Network (SPN) was created by the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), raising additional questions over both organizations' Internal Revenue Service (IRS) non-profit tax status. 

Fracking Lobby’s Tax Forms: Big Bucks to Media, “Other ALECs,” Democratic PR Firms

Cross-Posted from DeSmogBlog

America's Natural Gas Alliance (ANGA) - the public relations arm of the oil and gas fracking industry - has released its 2012 Internal Revenue Services (IRS) 990 form, and it's rich with eye-opening revelations, some of which we report here for the first time. 

Iranians Vote

 

Iranians Vote

 

by Stephen Lendman

 

On June 14, Iranians began voting. They'll choose their 11th president. By law, incumbent Mahmoud Ahmadinejad can't compete. He's limited to two terms. He's been president since August 2005.

 

Congress Today: Who Does it Really Represent?

With U.S. approval of Congress holding steady at a whopping 15%, one wonders just who it is the elected representatives are representing. Perhaps we can answer that question, by looking at some of their recent activities, and considering some of the things currently left undone.

Politicalspeak: U.S. Style

                It has been some time since the language of U.S. politics has been twisted so far as to render words nearly meaningless. In an effort to clarify what is actually being said in Washington, D.C., this writer offers this glossary of terms, with historical context, current usage and, at times, synonyms and antonyms.

                Some of these words and terms have been around for a while; others are brand new.

Hillary Clinton Cannot Be Less(er) Evil Than Anyone

Or less corrupt.

Watch this:

Watch this:

Watch this Oldie but Goodie:

"Those in Congress who voted to authorize the war on Iraq decided that Bush/Cheney/Rumsfeld, who claimed that the invasion and occupation would be good for Iraq and the United States, were somehow more credible than the broad consensus of scholars familiar with the country who correctly predicted it would be a disaster for both. This is why I believe Hillary Clinton does not have the wisdom or judgement to be president." —Stephen Zunes

Even older.

Read The Feminist Case Against a Woman President

Read Hillary Clinton, Hawk and Militarist

Read about a law suit against Hillary Clinton by a man put on a watch list by her after her guards roughed him up for silently protesting by turning his back.

Wall Street Republicans' dark secret: Hillary Clinton 2016

Her electoral problems.

Hillary Clinton and the Weaponization of the State Department

The Millionaire Pauper? Hillary Clinton’s Claim On Being “Dead Broke” Falls Flat With The Facts

On NSA, Hillary Clinton Is Either a Fool or a Liar

Hillary’s Candid Motto for Democratic Party: “Represent Banks”

Read Harper's Magazine Urges Readers to Stop Hillary

 

 

 

 

 

Hillary's $2,777 PER MINUTE speaking contracts demand a 'presidential' teleprompter, let her cancel 'for any reason whatsoever' and she's the only one allowed on stage

 

 

How Hillary Sold Fracking to the World

 

The Company She Keeps

 

 

Cynics, Step Aside: There is Genuine Excitement Over a Hillary Clinton Candidacy

 

Venezuela's Maduro Inaugurated

 

Venezuela's Maduro Inaugurated

 

by Stephen Lendman

 

Latin American and other heads of state attended Maduro's inaugural ceremony. Earlier he accused opposition forces of triggering post-election violence.

 

"We have stopped a coup in its first stage," he said. "They are beaten, but they are coming back with a new attack." On Thursday, he flew to Lima. 

 

Two scenes of terror this week, only one terrorism investigation: The Real Terrorists are the Corporate Execs Who’ve Bought the

 

By Dave Lindorff


The way I see it, we had two acts of terrorism in the US this week. The first took place at the end of the historic Boston Marathon, when two bombs went off near the finish line, killing three and seriously injuring dozens of runners and spectators. The second happened a couple days later in the town of West, Texas, where a fertilizer plant blew up, incinerating or otherwise killing at least 15, and injuring at least 150 people, and probably more as the search for the dead and the injured continues.

Chavismo Wins

 

Chavismo Wins

 

by Stephen Lendman

 

Venezuela's spirit of democracy lives. Celebratory fireworks followed Maduro's win. They were more subdued than last October. Chavez won then by 11 points.

 

Sunday's results were much closer than expected. Polls had Maduro way ahead. With 99.2% of the vote counted, his victory margin was 1.6%. 

 

Venezuelans Vote

 

Venezuelans Vote

 

by Stephen Lendman

 

On Sunday, April 14, PSUV's Nicolas Maduro (United Socialist Party of Venezuela) faces opposition Rountable of Democratic Unity (MUD) candidate Henrique Capriles Radonski.  

 

Most Venezuelans deplore him. They do so for good reason. He represents oligarch power, ties to Washington, and returning Venezuela to its ugly past.

Mid-April Venezuelan Presidential Elections Scheduled

 

Mid-April Venezuelan Presidential Elections Scheduled

 

by Stephen Lendman

 

Venezuela's National Electoral Council (CNE) President Tibisay Lucena announced Sunday, April 14. Acting President Nicolas Maduro carries Chavez's torch. 

 

He'll do it responsibly. Millions of Venezuelans depend on him. He won't them down. It won't be easy. He faces enormous obstacles. So did Chavez.

Vatican Changing of the Guard

 

Vatican Changing of the Guard

 

by Stephen Lendman

 

In April 2005, Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger was elected Pope Benedict XVI. At the time he said:

 

"Dear brothers and sisters. After the great Pope John Paul II, the Cardinals have elected me, a simple and humble worker in the vineyard of the lord."

 

American News Media Ignore Critical Media Scandal

 

By Linn Washington, Jr.


America’s corporate news media love highlighting David-besting-Goliath stories…except apparently, when the fallen Goliath is major media mogul Rupert Murdoch – the billionaire owner of America’s caustic FOX News and other entities.

Venezuelan Leadership Up for Grabs

 

Venezuelan Leadership Up for Grabs?

 

by Stephen Lendman

 

New reports about Chavez's health raise concerns. He's struggling to recover from complicated cancer surgery. Previous articles explained. More on his current status below.

 

On October 7, Venezuelans overwhelmingly reelected him. They want no one else leading them. He transformed national politics responsibly. He established participatory democracy and social justice.

Venezuelans Vote Again

 

Venezuelans Vote Again

 

by Stephen Lendman

 

In America, money power controls elections. People have no say. Each party replicates the other. Venezuela is different. 

 

Voters take full advantage. They choose real democrats over fake ones. It shows in how Venezuelans are governed.

 

Post Election -- a Feeling

 

I took a walk up the hill yesterday.

It was a little muddy for sneakers.

I could feel the chill

Coming up through my soles.

At the top I turned

And was surprised to see

Zionist Lobby in US Takes a Hit in Latest National Election

 

By Dave Lindorff

 

One little-noted but important result of the November election in the US that returned President Barack Obama to the White House for another four years is that the right-wing Israeli government and the Zionist lobbying organization AIPAC (for American Israel Public Affairs Committee) took a surprising drubbing and emerge a much weaker political influence going forward in US politics.


Money Party Wins US Election

 

Money Party Wins US Election

 

by Stephen Lendman

 

The same party wins every time. Duopoly power rules. America is a one party state with two wings. Each replicates the other. On major issues mattering most, not a dime's worth of difference separates them.

 

The late Gore Vidal explained it as well as anyone. Some of his best comments included:

 

Election's Over: It's Time to Organize!

 

By Dave Lindorff


Okay, the etch-a-sketch vulture capitalist who would have given us four years of that smarmy missionionary-at-your-door smile, was thankfully sent packing by the voters, and Barack Obama gets four more years in the White House.


Voter Apathy Explained (Why 90 Million Eligible Voters Don't Vote)

Today is election day here in these United States of America and this contest is- we have been told- the most important election of our lifetime and yet an estimated 90 million eligible voters will not vote at all.

Why is that?

Obama Votes for Romney

 

Obama Votes for Romney

 

by Stephen Lendman

 

"Well, he might have," said Mark Crispin Miller on his blog site. He doesn't know. Nor do other voters. Corporate owned, programmed and manipulated electronic voting machines control things.

 

Audio: Daniel Ellsberg and David Swanson Debate Voting for Obama

Here's audio of a debate between myself and Dan Ellsberg on whether and how to vote from Lila Garrett's KPFK show "Connect the Dots."

MP3

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