Thursday, December 22, 2011

One Year of Republican Assaults

Which do you think is the worst? Click here to vote:
  • Bring Back “Pre-Existing Conditions”: Health care reform is one of President Obama’s signature achievements. No longer can children born with health conditions be denied insurance. No longer can insurance companies deny care for “pre-existing conditions.” About 2.5 million young adults who lacked health insurance now are covered by their families’ plans. So what did Republicans do? Try to repeal “Obamacare” and put control back in the hands of insurance companies.
  • Kick Grandma Off Medicare & Give Her a Coupon: Republicans all lined up in favor of Republican Rep. Paul Ryan’s extreme budget plan earlier this year that would kill Medicare as we know it and turn it into a voucher program. Thank goodness the Democratic Senate was there to stop them and keep our promise to seniors.
  • Hand Over Cash to Corporations and the Wealthy: Another part of Paul Ryan’s plan: Give huge tax cuts to corporations and the wealthy. While the middle class struggles to get ahead, Republicans tried to make things worse by reducing taxes on the wealthiest – and sticking everyone else with the bill.
  • Rip Away Workers’ Rights: When Republicans won the governorships in Wisconsin and Ohio, among other states, one of the first things they did was go after public workers, including taking away the rights of teachers and prison guards to bargain for better pay and benefits. Bad move. They clearly overstepped their bounds, and voters will remember at the ballot box in 2012. 

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Paul's Birthday Celebration & Free Concert

Island of Black & White
Island of Black & White at the Side Bar Nightclub in El Dorado Hills
Thursday, December 22, 9pm
Side Bar Nightclub
4364 Town Center Blvd., Ste. 124
El Dorado Hills, California95762

Dear Friends,

Not sure if you all are aware, but Jesus and I are both celebrating birthdays this week. Since you are most likely going to be celebrating Jesus' birthday with your families, we thought you might want to celebrate mine with Leisa, me and our favorite local band, Island of Black and White, at the Side Bar Nightclub in El Dorado Hills. Great music, nice people, no cover charge, what better way to celebrate the Holiday Season... and tease me about getting old? Hope you can join us.

Happy Holidays!
Paul & Leisa 

Monday, December 19, 2011

The Ten Greediest Americans of 2011

The 10 Greediest Americans of 2011
By Sam Pizzigati
You don't have to make millions to rate as an all-star greedster. You do have to be ruthless, self-absorbed, and insensitive to others. Here's my list of the 10 greediest Americans of 2011.
10. Michael T. Duke, Wal-Mart CEO

Duke takes home his millions — $18.7 million in the company's latest fiscal year — by squeezing workers. He ended "premium pay" for the hours Wal-Mart workers have to put in on Sundays, eliminated profit-sharing, sheared health care benefits, and cut staffing levels so low, Retailing Today reports, that customers sometimes can't find shopping carts because the store where they're shopping has no employees available to collect carts from the parking lot.
9. Paul Hoolahan, Sugar Bowl CEO

The Sugar Bowl, one of college football's top four postseason games, enjoys tax-exempt status and regularly touts its contributions to good causes. But Hoolahan's favorite cause may be his own. He took home just under $600,000 in 2009, almost quadruple his $160,500 paycheck for the same job 13 years earlier. Meanwhile, the Sugar Bowl and its three "Bowl Championship Series" partners are contributing to charity only 20 cents from every $10 in revenue, theArizona Republic reports.
8. Robert Iger, Disney CEO

His annual compensation topped $28 million last year, a neat 35-percent increase. In October, Iger picked up a new pay deal that extends his CEO contract into 2015 and then adds on a cushy final year as Disney's "executive chairman" — at $2.5 million — to help him make the transition into retirement.
7. Doug Oberhelman, Caterpillar CEO

Thursday, December 15, 2011

In California, 305, 400 will Lose their Unemployment Assistance

Unless Congress acts now, lifeline aid for nearly 2 million workers who have lost jobs will be cut off
Dec. 31 as the extended unemployment insurance benefits expire. In California alone, 305,400 will lose
unemployment benefits. Over the course of 2012, an estimated 6 million U.S. workers struggling to find jobs
will lose these essential benefits if Congress continues to focus on keeping tax cuts for the 1% who crashed
our economy rather than helping the 99% by extending unemployment insurance.
If Congress fails to act, the impact on families, communities and our economy
will be devastating.
The average weekly benefit for an unemployed worker on the federal extension is about $297, which amounts
to only half of the income needed to cover the most basic necessities of food, housing and transportation, as
measured by the annual Consumer Expenditure Survey. In California, the weekly benefit averages $292.64.
While barely enough for a family’s survival, unemployment aid also supports
local economies in critical ways.
Unemployment benefits are pumped back into the economy immediately, flowing to local grocery stores, gas
stations, landlords and utilities. In California, the loss to communities could total $89,372,256 a week.
Nationwide, the economy grows by $2 for every dollar spent on unemployment insurance.
With unemployment rampant, now is not the time for Congress to delay or play
political games with the extension of unemployment aid.
Unemployment in CALIFORNIa
Total* 11.7 percent
African Americans** 19.5 percent
Latinos** 14.7 percent
20- to 24-year-olds, all** 19 percent
*October 2011
**2010 averages

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

A Jobless Sheetmetal Worker Urges Congress to Extend Unemployment Insurance

House Republicans tonight voted (234-193) to cut more than in half the number of weeks jobless workers can collect unemployment insurance (UI) benefits next year. The bill [1] also cuts pay for public employees, cuts preventive health services, reduces premium assistance for low- and middle-income individuals buying health insurance and raises premiums for many Medicare beneficiaries.
new report [2] from the National Employment Law Project (NELP [3]) says the legislation:
abandons millions of U.S. workers and those communities hardest hit by the most severe jobs crisis since the Great Depression.
While the legislation extends the federal UI program that is set to expire Dec. 31, the huge reduction in weeks of benefits and other changes in the UI program are “reckless and irresponsible,” says NELP Executive Director Christine Owens.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Laid off and Left out

Instead of acting to renew the vital lifeline of federal unemployment insurance, now set to expire Dec. 31st, the House majority leadership is fast-tracking a bill that would slash the federal benefits program -- drastically cutting weeks of benefits in every state, and imposing the harshest cuts in states with the highest unemployment rates.
Sound perverse?  Actually, it's even worse.
HR 3630, sponsored by Ways and Means Committee Chairman Rep. Dave Camp (R-MI) was introduced just last Friday.  Already, House leaders are pushing for a floor vote as early as Tuesday, Dec. 13.
The bill would cut 40 weeks of federal benefits in the highest unemployment states, and between 20 and 33 weeks in most other states.  A minimum of 14 weeks of federal unemployment benefits would be cut in every state in America.
Call your Members of Congress now!  Call toll-free 1-888-245-3381.  Tell your Representative as well as your Senators to oppose HR 3630.  Tell them to support a full renewal of the federal unemployment insurance program for 2012 now!
Even if you've called previously, please call again now.  Here's why...
In addition to slashing unemployment benefits and hitting high unemployment states with the largest cuts, HR 3630 would also:
* Allow states to impose mandatory drug-testing on all unemployment insurance claimants. (Yes, you read that correctly.)
* Take money out of jobless workers' weekly benefits to "pay for" reemployment services (Yes, you read that correctly.)
* Allow states to divert funds intended to pay unemployed workers' benefits, and use those funds to subsidize private employer's 'workfare'-type programs (Yes, you read that correctly too.)
Call your Members of Congress now!  Call toll-free 1-888-245-3381.  Tell your Representative as well as your Senators to oppose HR 3630.  Tell them to support a full renewal of the federal unemployment insurance program for 2012 now!

The Saving American Democracy Amendment

Budget cuts and tuition hikes coming this week

Additional state budget cuts to higher education, k-12, and other services are predicted for this week.
They are called Trigger Cuts.

Major corporations pay few taxes

265 Major, Profitable U.S. Corporations' Tax Avoidance
Costs States $42 Billion Over Three Years; Sixty Eight
Companies Have At Least One Tax-Free Year
Citizens for Tax Justice
December 7, 2011

Washington, DC -- A comprehensive new study that
profiles 265 consistently profitable Fortune 500
companies finds that 68 of them paid no state corporate
income tax in at least one of the last three years and
20 of them averaged a tax rate of zero or less during
the 2008-2010 period. These are among the findings in
"Corporate Tax Dodging in the Fifty States, 2008-2010"
released today by the Institute on Taxation and Economic
Policy (ITEP) and Citizens for Tax Justice (CTJ).

"Our report shows these corporations raked in a combined
$1.33 trillion in profits in the last three years, and
far too many have managed to shelter half or more of
their profits from state taxes," said Matthew Gardner,
Executive Director at the Institute on Taxation and
Economic Policy and the report's co-author. "They're so
busy avoiding taxes, it's no wonder they're not creating
any new jobs."

Friday, December 9, 2011

Bobby's Story: Facing Foreclosure

Film: Which Way Home

The Friday Night Film Series Presents
"Which Way Home"

Oscar Nominee – Best Documentary
“Tremendous eye-opening filmmaking.” – Esquire
“A riveting documentary.” – Cinematical
100% Rating on Rotten Tomatoes!

Friday, December 9, 2011
 Hinde Auditorium
Sac State University Union

 Shorts--6:00pm   Feature Film--6:30pm

Info: 916-248-3970 or

Sacramento Police break up Occupy protest

City of Sacramento plays Grinch again as 23 are arrested 

by Dan Bacher 

The City of Sacramento played the Grinch again on December 8 when they arrested 23 Occupy Sacramento supporters defending their First Amendment rights at Cesar Chavez Park. 

However, this Grinch, unlike the Dr. Seuss character, didn't just try to steal Christmas, but to deprive people of their rights under the Constitution. 

The activists - including military veterans from the Vietnam and Iraq wars marking the anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor - were arrested early Thursday morning about 2:30 a.m. during a "First Amendment Party" at Cesar Chavez Park. 

21 of the 23 were booked into Sacramento County Jail and all were released by 2:30 p.m. 

Monday, December 5, 2011

Occupy our Homes.

Occupy Our Homes: Tuesday, Dec. 6 Tomorrow marks a huge day of action to fight back against the housing crisis and launch a new phase in the Occupy movement - occupying foreclosed homes and property. 99%ers will challenge Wall Street banks and demand they negotiate with homeowners instead of fraudulently foreclosing on them. Around the country people will stand up for the idea that everyone deserves to live with dignity in decent, affordable housing. Events are taking place in Brooklyn and Rochester New York; Los Angeles, Oakland, San Francisco, San Diego, San Jose, Petaluma and Contra Costa California; Lake Worth, Florida; Atlanta, Fayetteville, and DeKalb Georgia; Chicago, Illinois; Minneapolis, Minnesota; Denver, Colorado; Detroit and Southgate Michigan; St. Louis, Missouri; Portland, Oregon; Seattle, Washington and beyond. Get more info at

Support unemployed workers

The clock is ticking.  Congress has yet to act to renew federal unemployment insurance for 2012, and the program that has helped more than 17 million long-term jobless Americans is set to expire December 31st.
If Congress fails to act, nearly 2 million unemployed workers will be cut off of federal unemployment benefits in the month of January alone.  Millions more would be cut off in ensuing months -- more than 6 million during 2012.
Last week, with your help, we delivered 80,000 Petition to Congress online signatures, gathered with key allies, to a rally with unemployed workersand Members of Congress on Capitol Hill.
Now, we need to make sure that all the Congressional leaders and every Member of Congress receives this message directly from you:  Renew Federal Unemployment Insurance Now!
Send a message to your Members of Congress and Congressional leaders:  Renew Federal Unemployment Insurance Now!
Tell your Senators, your Representative and the leaders in Congress from both parties to Renew Federal Unemployment Insurance Now!
Many thanks.
The UnemployedWorkers.Org Team

Thursday, December 1, 2011

"I'll Occupy" : The 99 is Pissed and We Will Not Be Dism...

Growing Housing Crisis in Sacramento

Wall Street Banks and the Growing Housing Crisis in Sacramento.
California has been one of the hardest hit states by the foreclosure crisis. Wall Street’s reckless lending practices devastated California with high-cost loans homeowners couldn’t afford, while inflating the housing bubble that reaped record profits for the 1 percent. The consequences of Wall Street greed is that millions of Californians have lost their homes and thousands more continue to struggle with finding quality and affordable housing.
While vacant bank-owned properties litter Sacramento neighborhoods, rental vacancies are in decline, rental prices are up in many areas, and there are 2,734 homeless in Sacramento County.12 In parts of Sacramento rent rates increased by more than 3 percent from 2007 to 2012.13