Wednesday, August 27, 2014

I Question America- Fannie Lou Hamer

Peter Dreier

August 25, 2014
Fannie Lou Hamer testifying at the Democratic Party convention in Atlantic City in 1964
Huffington Post
"I question America " -- the famous words spoken by civil rights activist Fannie Lou Hamer fifty years ago this week at the tumultuous Democratic Party convention in Atlantic City -- is a fitting reflection of the soul-searching that the country is once again going through in the wake of the turmoil in Ferguson, Missouri.
To understand both the progress America has made, and the many challenges it now faces, in terms of racial justice, it is useful to remind ourselves of the battle that occurred a half century ago and the life of Ms. Hamer, a sharecropper and activist from the Mississippi Delta who galvanized the country with her stirring words and her remarkable courage.
In her testimony before the credentials committee at the Democratic Party's convention in Atlantic City, New Jersey, Hamer explained why the committee should recognize the integrated Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party over the state's segregated official party delegation. Her statement made her a national figure and a symbol of the struggle for civil rights.

Groups Protest Pro-Government Policies of Mexican President Peña Nieto- The Bee ignores it

SACRAMENTO, Calif. —Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto praised Gov. Jerry Brown and state lawmakers Tuesday for approving a series of immigrant-friendly laws, saying California is taking a lead role in the absence of national immigration reform.
He specifically mentioned a law that allows immigrants in the country illegally to obtain driver's licenses, a law that has yet to take effect because a final decision has not been made about the appearance of the licenses.
California also allows immigrants here illegally to apply for state-funded college scholarships and aid at public universities. And earlier this month, Brown and the Democratic legislative leaders announced a plan to spend $3 million to provide legal help for the estimated 3,900 unaccompanied immigrant children from Central America who are in the state.

Pena Nieto said such actions signaled that California was recognizing human dignity no matter a person's immigration status.

"The progress you have promoted not only benefits Californians because you have sent a very clear message to the U.S. and the entire world," he said during an address in Spanish to a joint session of the Legislature.

His visit followed Brown's trade mission to Mexico earlier this summer. The Democratic governor wants to promote greater cross-border cooperation with the country that is California's largest export market, most notably on alternative energy projects that could help combat climate change.
The Protest against Peña Nieto  organized by the Zapatista Solidarity Committee and others argued that Mexico is undemocratic and  suppresses political dissent.  A recent report ranks Mexico as seventh on the list of countries where journalists are killed.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

antiracismdsa: Groups protest Pro-corporate policies of Mexican G...

antiracismdsa: Groups protest Pro-corporate policies of Mexican G...: SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto praised Gov. Jerry Brown and state lawmakers Tuesday for approving a series ...

Tell Burger King; pay your fair taxes

Burger King benefits enormously from being an American company and should pay its fair share of taxes here in America. Don't even attempt this whopper tax dodge or we will boycott Burger King.

Monday, August 25, 2014

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Koch Brothers Fund misleading anti Ami Bera ads

Here is how the Sacramento Bee describes the misleading and false ad running dozens a time per day on local TV stations.
“Crossroads GPS, the outside group affiliated with GOP strategist Karl Rove, is out with a television ad in Sacramento County, yoking freshman Democratic Rep. Ami Bera to the federal Affordable Care Act. Criticism of the controversial health care overhaul has been a major campaign theme of Bera’s GOP opponent, former Rep. Doug Ose, who favors repealing and replacing the law.
Following is a series of claims the organization makes, with an analysis by Christopher Cadelago of The Sacramento Bee Capitol Bureau.
Narrator: “Obamacare isn’t healthy for California. But Congressman Ami Bera voted to keep it.
It’s expected to cost taxpayers $2 trillion, increase taxes by $800 billion and cut $700 billion from our Medicare.
Millions were told their plans were canceled. And Obamacare could cause women to lose their doctors and pay higher deductibles and co-pays.
Tell Congressman Bera, ‘Do what’s healthy for California. Repeal Obamacare.’”
Analysis: It’s true that Bera has voted against Republican efforts to repeal the federal health care law, but the ad tosses out large numbers in a misleading way.
While the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office projects the law would have more than $2 trillion in costs through 2024, that figure does not take into account offsetting income through tax increases or spending changes. The budget office says the overhaul in its entirety would actually reduce federal deficits.”
The ad continues with a series of equally misleading claims and false statements.
This is the work of American’s for Prosperity, the Koch brothers funded 501 c4 campaign.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Justice for Michael Brown and Equal Justice for All

Justice for Michael Brown: Community Control of Police and Equality for All

Statement by the Democratic Socialists of America National Political Committee, August 21, 2014

Democratic Socialists of America calls for a full federal civil rights investigation into the killing of Michael Brown and an end to the militarization of local police forces. The action of the Ferguson, Missouri, police department exemplifies the dangers to the lives of ordinary Americans, particularly people of color, posed by overly aggressive, heavily armed police forces.

Over the past thirty years, federal, state and local government have abandoned commitments to fighting poverty and unemployment, conditions that disproportionately limit the life opportunities of young persons of color. Most low income youth only encounter the state as a repressive force that relegates them to a life within the prison-industrial complex, even for the most minor and non-violent of drug-related offenses. These activities rarely lead white youth to be arrested, let alone imprisoned.

In the case of Ferguson, Missouri, police-mandated media blackouts and the pervasive detainment, harassment and arrest of journalists cloud public understanding of the ongoing crisis. The constant barrage of tear gas canisters into crowds, backyards and neighborhood streets in recent days has further hampered a full understanding of the situation on the ground.

What is clear is that on August 9th, Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson shot and killed an unarmed 18-year-old Michael Brown, a young black man. African Americans are 65% of the community’s population, but whites, such as Officer Wilson, are 96% of the town's police department. Following a night of mass protest and unrest, hundreds of para-militarized officers swarmed Ferguson, creating an atmosphere of occupation and terror. The massive use of police force against peaceful protestors only exacerbated the understandable anger of a community in which the police are justifiably viewed as a foreign occupying force.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Grantland Johnson - RIP

Friend, and ally, has passed.
Grantland Johnson was a progressive and an ally of DSA.  He joined us in many efforts including the fight against NAFTA, support for the Central American Solidarity Movement, as a labor ally. and the effort to use the County Supervisor position for positive goods.

Published: Tuesday, Aug. 19, 2014 - 1:08 pm
Grantland Johnson, a trailblazing politician who rose in rank to serve his native Sacramento as a city councilman, county supervisor and top health official in state and federal governments, died today.
He was 65 and had been receiving dialysis in recent years for kidney failure caused by hypertension and diabetes.
Johnson was widely respected in the community as a thoughtful leader with keen political instincts and a passion for ideas. Although often viewed through the prism of race – he was the first African American elected to the Sacramento County Board of Supervisors – he was a conciliator who worked with disparate interests in search of solutions to common problems.
Appointed to the Sacramento Regional Transit board in 1976, he was elected to the Sacramento City Council in 1983. He won a close race for county supervisor in 1986 and was re-elected to a second term four years later.
He left local government in 1993 to serve in theClinton administration as Western regional director for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Six years later, he was tapped by Gov. Gray Davis to be director of the California Health and Human Services Agency and served in the state Cabinet until Davis was recalled from office in 2003.

Saturday, August 9, 2014

Brown must clarify water bond language

Bay Delta Conservation Plan opponents ask Brown to release water bond languag

by Dan Bacher 

In an email sent to his campaign supporters on August 5, Governor Jerry Brown called for a “no frills, no pork” $6 million bond that would be “tunnels neutral.” 

Opponents of the Bay Delta Conservation Plan’s proposed $67 billlion tunnels quickly challenged the claim that the bond is” tunnels neutral” – and called for Brown to release the language of his water bond. 

Brown explained the reasons for his pared down bond in his email, one of only three his campaign staff have sent out to supporters during his reelection campaign: 

“Five years ago, state legislators and the Governor put a pork-laden water bond on the ballot — with a price tag beyond what’s reasonable or affordable. The cost to taxpayers would be enormous — $750 million a year for 30 years — and would come at the expense of funding for schools, health care and public safety. This is on top of the nearly $8 billion a year the state already spends on bond debt service.”