Newsflash:
Issues Economic and Social Justice End Wars and Occupations US built 'powerful organs of state terrorism' in Iraq
Saturday, 09 November 2013 19:49

US built 'powerful organs of state terrorism' in Iraq

Written by  Nicolas J.S. Davies | RT.com

Iraq is still suffering from the US invasion because the apparatus of state oppression and terror is still in place, killing people every day. But few in the US seem to realize the scale of the war crimes committed in Iraq, an expert author told RT.

In an exclusive interview with RT, Nicolas J.S. Davies, author of “Blood On Our Hands: The American Invasion and Destruction of Iraq,” said that the world should learn the lessons from US invasions, such as respect for international law and the futility of military force.

For more on this topic, see RT’s Special Report dedicated to unprecedented raise of violence in Iraq in 2013.

Questionable US objectives in Iraq

RT: Has America achieved any of the goals it had at the beginning of the invasion in 2003?

Nicolas J.S. Davies: That depends how you define those goals. If the intention was to invade a foreign country and destroy its government and its society, then yes, it did.

If you take US officials at their word and accept that they had an intention of replacing that regime and that society with something better, then obviously they did not.

My friend was in Iraq a few months ago and he found very few people in Iraq today who would say that their lives are better now than under Saddam Hussein’s regime. And that is not to say good in any way about Saddam Hussein, it is to say that the United States and its allies destroyed Iraq.

The invasion was not just some sort of mistake. The invasion and occupation were a serious crime, a crime of aggression under the UN Charter as (then-Secretary General) Kofi Annan acknowledged. And aggression was defined under the Nuremberg principles and by the judges at Nuremberg as the supreme international crime. 

‘US blown out UN Charter in the past 12 years’

The wisdom of renouncing aggression and war in the UN Charter is borne out by what we have seen in all the acts of aggression that the US has committed over the past 10-12 years. Not one of them has in fact managed to reduce terrorism, managed to establish a better form of government, or managed to make anybody safer.

So when we look at the absolute chaos today in Iraq, Libya and Syria, I think we have to ask who is responsible – and are these in fact crimes for which people should be held criminally responsible?

RT: Many people blame the US for the current unrest in the country saying America has “stirred up a hornets' nest.” What do you think?

ND: Well, except that Iraq was not a hornet’s nest. And once again this bears out the wisdom of the UN Charter.

Let me read you a very short quote from Norwegian general Robert Mood, who oversaw the peacekeeping force that went into Syria in 2012 to oversee the failed ceasefire.

“It is fairly easy to use the military tool, because, when you launch the military tool in classical interventions, something will happen and there will be results. The problem is that the results are almost all the time different than the political results you were aiming for when you decided to launch it. So the other position, arguing that it is not the role of the international community, neither coalitions of the willing, nor the UN Security Council for that matter, to change governments inside a country, is also a position that should be respected.”

So I think it is a lesson for all of us, for the whole world, to learn from this experience. It is exactly what he just said.

We need a framework of international law respected by all – including the most powerful countries like the United States. 

US soldiers from the 1st Battalion, 22nd Regiment of the 4th Infantry Division prepare to fire a mortar during training at their base in Tikrit, 180 Kilometers (110 miles) north of Iraqi capital Baghdad, 29 December 2003 (AFP Photo / Jewel Samad)

US soldiers from the 1st Battalion, 22nd Regiment of the 4th Infantry Division prepare to fire a mortar during training at their base in Tikrit, 180 Kilometers (110 miles) north of Iraqi capital Baghdad, 29 December 2003 (AFP Photo / Jewel Samad)

‘Every US military intervention since the WWII has been a complete disaster’

The use of military force cannot achieve any constructive goals, as our leaders claim.

You know, since World War II every US military intervention everywhere has been a complete disaster, whether you’re talking about Korea, Vietnam, Central America in the 1960s or all this entire history of the past 12 years.

You know, really, after Vietnam, I think most Americans understood this. Richard Barnet, who founded the Institute for Policy Studies in Washington, wrote a book called “Roots of War” in 1972. He said in that book that the irony is that we’re at a point where the No. 1 country has perfected the science of killing; that at the very moment that this has happened, it is no longer a practical means of political domination.

And as I say, this is the irony of our country, the United States, in world history: That at the point where we have these weapons powerful enough to destroy the entire world, we can no longer use them to any practical constructive purpose. And yet, we have virtually bankrupted this country.

Since Richard Barnet wrote these words in 1972, the US has spent at least $17 trillion on its military, which happens to be exactly equal to our supposedly unsustainable national debt.

This is really now just a tragic history, but what we should do is to try and learn from that and recommit to the rule of international law. We just saw how effective it could be in Syria, by actually practicing working diplomacy within the rule of international law, bringing the chemical weapons of the regime to the UN to dismantle them – and how much better that works than launching missile strikes. 

Iraqi children look at US soldiers from the 1st battalion, 22nd Regiment of the 4th Infantry Division conducting a foot-patrol along a street of former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein's hometown Tikrit, 180 Kilometers (110 miles) north of Iraqi capital Baghdad, 27 December 2003 (AFP Photo / Jewel Samad)

Iraqi children look at US soldiers from the 1st battalion, 22nd Regiment of the 4th Infantry Division conducting a foot-patrol along a street of former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein's hometown Tikrit, 180 Kilometers (110 miles) north of Iraqi capital Baghdad, 27 December 2003 (AFP Photo / Jewel Samad)

‘US employed classic divide-and-rule strategy in Iraq’

RT: This year has proved to be most deadliest in Iraq for the last five years. Why is the situation on the ground getting worse?

ND: Well, because Iraq is still suffering from the destruction of its regime and its government and its society by the United States. The United States employed a classic divide-and-rule strategy, pitting people of different sects against each other, inciting violence that is completely unprecedented in that country. And now has instilled a sectarian-based government that only represents people of only one sect. It is still receiving huge amounts of so-called security assistance from the United States.

The United States built powerful organs of state terrorism in Iraq. The CIA sent a retired colonel by the name of James Steele to Iraq in 2004. He eventually recruited 27 brigades of special police commandos who then waged a reign of terror that killed tens of thousands of mostly Sunni men and boys in Baghdad and around the country. They have since been rebranded, first as the National Police, when one of their torture centers was discovered back during that period, and now as the Federal Police. They are still effectively run by Adnan Al-Asadi, who has been the deputy interior minister there since 2005.

So that regime of state repression and terror that the United States installed in Iraq is still functioning, and still conducting extrajudicial executions, in addition to one of the largest numbers of supposedly legal executions in the world.

You know, in Iraq, you can be sentenced to death for property crimes; you can be sentenced to death on accusations of terrorism, in trials that only last, at best, an hour or two, with very little legal representation. Human rights officials from the UN have absolutely condemned the justice system – so-called justice system – that the US has established in Iraq, and have demanded – the UN Human Rights Council has demanded – that Iraq immediately cease these hangings.

Sometimes they hang more than 40 people in one day, including women as well. This is just a reign of terror. And in that sense, some of the worst aspects of the US occupation are still continuing today.

Two US soldiers from the 1st battalion, 22nd Regiment of the 4th Infantry Division secure the parameters during a foot-patrol along a street of former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein's hometown Tikrit, 180 Kilometers (110 miles) north of Iraqi capital Baghdad, 27 December 2003 (AFP Photo / Jewel Samad)

Two US soldiers from the 1st battalion, 22nd Regiment of the 4th Infantry Division secure the parameters during a foot-patrol along a street of former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein's hometown Tikrit, 180 Kilometers (110 miles) north of Iraqi capital Baghdad, 27 December 2003 (AFP Photo / Jewel Samad)

RT: Can we expect the situation to change?

ND: There has always been resistance in Iraq to this reign of terror, and to this highly illegitimate government. And most of that is political, non-violent resistance. Since 2011 when the Arab Spring began – you know, there were massive demonstrations all over Iraq in 2011 during the Arab Spring, they were not reported very much in the West, for political reasons. There is a great demand from the people of Iraq to change this situation.

But as long as the US continues to support this highly repressive government it is very difficult, and it is continuing to cause the sacrifice of thousands of lives. It is obviously exploited by extremists, by Islamists, Sunni groups supported by the Saudis and others on the other side. So you’ve got an extremist Shiite government and you’ve got extremist Sunni, right-wing fundamentalist terrorism and you’ve got millions of innocent civilians caught up in the middle. But their capacity for resistance was systematically broken down by the US occupation. 

Hundreds and hundreds of academics were killed. Thousands of professionals fled the country during the US occupation. Almost anyone who could get out fled for their lives, amid the threat of death from various militias and factions in Iraq. It will take an awful lot for Iraq to recover from this.

‘US never accounted for war crimes’

But for American viewers watching this, I think it’s important to understand our responsibility and our government’s responsibility for this. President Nixon promised $3.3 billion in reparations to Vietnam, but not a penny of that was ever paid. We should be paying reparations to help the people of Iraq recover for what was done in our name to them. We should be pressing, pressing for our leaders to be held accountable for these crimes.

A couple of weeks ago, I went with a group of people here in Miami to the Canadian consulate and met with the political officer there, because Mr. Richard Cheney, the former vice president of the United States, was scheduled to speak at an economic forum in Toronto. So we along with human rights groups and lawyers in Canada and the United States were asking Canada to please do what we have failed to do, to honor its obligations under the convention against torture. To either bar Mr. Cheney from entering Canada, or if he was allowed into Canada, to please arrest him and investigate his alleged crimes. Unfortunately, the very conservative government in Canada failed – once again – to uphold its obligations under the convention against torture.

Iraqi women wlak past a burnt-out vehicle on October 7, 2013 following a bombing attack in Baghdad's eastern al-Jadidah district the night before. (AFP Photo / Ahmad Al-Rubaye)

Iraqi women wlak past a burnt-out vehicle on October 7, 2013 following a bombing attack in Baghdad's eastern al-Jadidah district the night before. (AFP Photo / Ahmad Al-Rubaye)

The US occupation of Iraq, as well as being an act of aggression, when you consider that probably about 10 percent of the Sunni population were killed, and probably 25 percent of them were driven from their homes, clearly meets the definition of genocide as it is defined in the genocide convention. The occupation included systematic, daily violations of the convention against torture and many, many articles of the Geneva Conventions.

So the US officials responsible for all of that really have many charges to answer. And we should understand, as Americans, that while there have been indictments in Spain, and Mr. Bush was prevented from traveling to Switzerland, Mr. Rumsfeld was almost prevented from traveling to Belgium at one point – the primary responsibility under all the international treaties that the United States has signed is on us. It is our responsibility to hold senior, major American war criminals responsible for their crimes.

And that continues. The Obama administration has not just failed to hold the officials of the previous administration accountable, but has continued many of these crimes. Aggression is aggression, whether it’s a full-scale invasion or simply flying drones over another country and blowing up people’s homes.

So the US crimes continue. After the US was convicted by the International Court of Justice in the 1980s of committing aggression against Nicaragua, it said it would simply no longer recognize the jurisdiction of the International Court of Justice. It has never recognized the jurisdiction of the International Criminal Court, which so far is functioning as an international African court because the only people that have been charged have been from Africa. And of course this is completely undermining the legitimacy of the court. Little by little, no one in Africa is going to cooperate with it if they see it as simply targeting their own leaders while leaders of the United States and other countries just completely get off the hook.

So we have a collective responsibility, which we can fulfill by the payment of war reparations, and we have criminal accountability by which we need to charge civilian and military officials who were responsible for the horrors inflicted on the people of Iraq, under our own laws, under the United States War Crimes Act, for the crimes they committed.

A wounded man is carried away following a suicide bombing close to the home of MP Imad Yohana in the northern city of Kirkuk on September 22, 2013, in which some 47 people were wounded including the Christian MP. (AFP Photo / Marwan Ibrahim)

A wounded man is carried away following a suicide bombing close to the home of MP Imad Yohana in the northern city of Kirkuk on September 22, 2013, in which some 47 people were wounded including the Christian MP. (AFP Photo / Marwan Ibrahim)

‘American viewers are not familiar with horrors of modern Iraq’

RT: The mainstream media is often portraying terror attacks and deaths in Iraq as mundane. But the war doesn't seem to be over. Why do the Western media often turn a blind eye to the everyday struggle of Iraqis?

ND: Some of your viewers may be surprised to hear some of the things I’m saying because the US media has simply never addressed this incredible human tragedy in Iraq in these kinds of terms. In fact, I think any reporter who talks to people in Iraq today can ascertain pretty quickly that very few people - only perhaps those affiliated with the government that was installed by the occupation, perhaps some of those people would feel they’re now better off – but for ordinary Iraqis probably very few would say they’re better off today.

And yet, this would come as a surprise to many Americans. Many Americans, because the media has reported in such a bias fashion in this entire catastrophe, many Americans are unaware. You mentioned in your invitation to me that the Iraq Body Count, which as some estimate of 100,000 or 200,000 Iraqis killed, but that is based on passive reporting. Actual epidemiological studies in Iraq have found anywhere from 400,000 to over 1 million Iraqis killed. 

Les Roberts, who pioneered epidemiology in war zones, in Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo, took part in one of those epidemiological studies in Iraq, and he found exactly the same pattern in Iraq as he found in Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo: that passive reporting of deaths in a war zone generally only capture between 5 percent and 20 percent of the actual deaths that emerge from more in-depth studies. So the Iraq Body Count is based on passive reporting, they’re taking numbers from the Iraqi Health Ministry, numbers reported in the Western media and sort of adding those up. Again, Les Roberts found exactly the same thing in Iraq as he found in Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo, that probably 5 to 20 times as many people as that were actually killed in Iraq.

Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki (AFP Photo / Mandel Ngan)

Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki (AFP Photo / Mandel Ngan)

‘The true numbers of victims in Iraq is much higher’

Yes, thousands of people are still being killed, and the exact numbers are probably very hard to know. It is less than during most of the US occupation. Most of the people killed during the US occupation were killed by US or allied forces, or by US-trained Iraqi forces. When the Iraqi Health Ministry reported in 2004 and 2005 that that was the case, that most of the deaths were not from resistance forces or insurgents, but from the occupying forces, that was reported even in The Miami Herald, actually, by McClatchy, by Nancy Youssef who did some very good reporting.

The BBC – but once the BBC got a hold of it and started reporting that, John Simpson reported that in preparing for a Panorama show in Britain for the BBC, but before the actual Panorama show aired, he was contacted by the Iraqi Minister of Health saying, “No, no, no, that’s not what the numbers show,” that these were their own figures, he said, “No, no, we really have no idea who killed all these people.” On the web you can find sites like the Information Clearing House. You can find the original BBC report, and then you can find its retraction and the reedited report sort of apologizing for having reported what the occupation health ministry had told them.

So, really, when we look at Libya, when we look at Syria, we really need to understand. I think Americans deserve more credit than they usually get for grasping these issues, and I think that kind of explains why we saw this massive, massive outcry against the prospect of new US aggression against Syria.

If people want to know more about the US invasion and destruction of Iraq, please get a hold of a copy of my book, it’s called “Blood on Our Hands: The American Invasion and Destruction of Iraq.” People can also read my other work on Syria and on US militarism and war crimes.   

 

Original article on RT.com

Read 5853 times Last modified on Saturday, 09 November 2013 20:09

Trans Pacific Partnership Fast Track - Where Does Your Legislator Stand

Click your state to see your Senators and Representatives

Green = Most Legislators Oppose Fast Track, Yellow = Some Opposition, Orange = Oppose TPP, Gray = Unknown
DeLauro 13 - Signed 2013 DeLauro/Miller letter
Pocan - Signed Freshman Letter Opposing Fast Track
W/M - Signed Ways and Means Letter opposing TPP
Gibson - Signed Rep. Chris Gibson letter opposing TPP
SOPA - Oppose Stop Online Piracy Act - voted against
Currency - Oppose Currency Manipulation (Signed Michaud Letter)
Textile - Oppose changes to "First Yarn" (Signed Textile Industry Letter)

Economic and Social Justice Articles

  • Senator Bernie Sanders Warns of the Dire Consequences if the Republicans Take Over Congress
    Senator Bernie Sanders Warns of the Dire Consequences if the Republicans Take Over Congress

    It would be hard to argue that we have not seen some remarkable achievements in the past week or so, most notably in the form of the massive, grassroots power displayed by the hundreds of thousands of people coming together in common cause in the heart of the world's financial capital, New York City. 

    Written on Friday, 03 October 2014 17:05 Read more...
  • Congresswoman Jackie Speier Releases Statement on Domestic Violence Awareness Month
    Congresswoman Jackie Speier Releases Statement on Domestic Violence Awareness Month

    WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today Congresswoman Jackie Speier (D-San Francisco/San Mateo Counties) released the following statement on the beginning of Domestic Violence Awareness Month:

    “October is an opportunity to reflect on the devastating impact of domestic violence. Each year, domestic violence causes more injuries to women than auto accidents, rapes, and muggings combined. On average, 24 Americans each minute are victims of physical violence by an intimate partner. What is truly frightening about this statistic is that this is progress – domestic violence has actually decreased by 67% since 1994.

    Written on Thursday, 02 October 2014 20:59 Read more...
  • Congress Cuts $8.7 Billion in Food Stamps, But Finds $22 Billion to Fight ISIS
    Congress Cuts $8.7 Billion in Food Stamps, But Finds $22 Billion to Fight ISIS

    It was all the way back in February, so the memory of this headline has faded:

    ” Congress passes $8.7 billion food stamp cut.

    By Ned Resnikoff

    It’s official: 850,000 households across the country are set to lose an average of $90 per month in food stamp benefits.

    The Senate on Tuesday voted 68-32 to send the 2014 Farm Bill – which includes an $8.7 billion cut to food stamps – to President Obama’s desk. Nine Democrats opposed the bill, and 46 members of the Democratic caucus voted for it, joining 22 Republicans.”

    Written on Thursday, 02 October 2014 20:54 Read more...
  • "When We Are United We Can Do Anything" -Workers React to Wage Theft Prevention Act Victory
    "When We Are United We Can Do Anything" -Workers React to Wage Theft Prevention Act Victory

    On Friday, Mayor Gray signed the Wage Theft Prevention Act of 2014. Click here to see the bill or here for a marked up version of the DC Code that shows the changes that will be made once the legislation goes into effect in late November or early December. The legislation was passed after years of organizing, strategizing and campaigning by the Employment Justice Center, DC Jobs with Justice and our other allies in the DC Wage Theft Coalition.

    Written on Wednesday, 24 September 2014 14:03 Read more...
  • Progressive Caucus to Speaker Boehner: Stop Wasting Tax Dollars on Benghazi Committee
    Progressive Caucus to Speaker Boehner: Stop Wasting Tax Dollars on Benghazi Committee Washington, D.C. –Today, the Congressional Progressive Caucus (CPC) Co-Chairs Reps. Raúl M. Grijalva (D-AZ) and Keith Ellison (D-MN) sent Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) a letter urging him to create a Select Committee on Income Inequality instead of spending as much as 3.3 million tax dollars on another investigation into Benghazi. An analysis from Think Progress shows the Republican-led House of Representatives is on track to spend more investigating Benghazi than it does on nine other House committees.
    Written on Thursday, 18 September 2014 20:09 Read more...
  • Congresswoman Speier Calls on Walgreens to Address Illegal Charges to Women for Contraceptives
    Congresswoman Speier Calls on Walgreens to Address Illegal Charges to Women for Contraceptives WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congresswomen Jackie Speier (D-San Francisco/San Mateo Counties) sent a letter today to Gregory D. Wasson, President and CEO of Walgreens, to correct and provide remedies to consumers who have been charged an illegal co-pay for generic contraceptives at Walgreens pharmacies.
    Written on Monday, 15 September 2014 18:33 Read more...
  • You Don't Know What 'Libertarian' Means
    You Don't Know What 'Libertarian' Means

    Libertarianism is not what most Americans think it is...

    If you want to know what libertarianism is all about, don’t ask a libertarian, because most of them don’t know. 

    Written on Thursday, 04 September 2014 16:59 Read more...
  • Racist Detroit Policies Lead to Lawsuit Against Water Shut-Offs
    Racist Detroit Policies Lead to Lawsuit Against Water Shut-Offs Racism does not only come in the form of bullets fired by a police officer. Detroit’s socio-political problems are furthered by blatantly racist, ALEC sponsored, Koch brothers–backed Tea Party candidates and legislation, which have lead to gentrification and cutting off of water to minority residents in predominantly African American communities.
    Written on Thursday, 28 August 2014 14:59 Read more...
  • Inside the Remote, Secretive Detention Center for Migrant Families
    Inside the Remote, Secretive Detention Center for Migrant Families Hundreds of migrant families who have entered the US from Central America are being held in detention while they wait to be processed. Over 600 people are being held in the main facility, in Artesia, NM. The government is working to deport these families as quickly as possible, in the hopes of sending a message that will deter more families from coming. That's raised concerns about whether they're getting due process in their immigration cases, or whether families whose lives might be in danger are being deported.
    Written on Thursday, 21 August 2014 01:13 Read more...
  • Protesters Gain Detroit Water Shut-Off Moratorium, Demand Investigation of Suspected Rampant Corruption
    Protesters Gain Detroit Water Shut-Off Moratorium, Demand Investigation of Suspected Rampant Corruption

    A new mass rally in Detroit is planned for Friday, August 29, the day the state-enforced city bankruptcy trial begins. Democracy activists throughout the Midwest are again urged to come demonstrate against the water shut-offs and the hostile takeover of Detroit's assets.

    Written on Wednesday, 20 August 2014 01:47 Read more...
  • The Need for Jobs and Economic Equality
    The Need for Jobs and Economic Equality Wealth and resources are not infinite; they are finite! Therefore, if some have too much, many others are left with little or nothing. It always amazes me when I hear commentators say our economy is improving, while unemployment and underemployment are on the rise. On July 3, the DOW hit an all time high; it topped 17,000 for the first time.
    Written on Sunday, 17 August 2014 17:00 Read more...
  • 'Poor Doors' Come To SoCal: Low-Income Residents Of This Proposed WeHo Complex Can Look At The Pool But Can't Swim In It
    'Poor Doors' Come To SoCal: Low-Income Residents Of This Proposed WeHo Complex Can Look At The Pool But Can't Swim In It Developers of a mixed-use building in West Hollywood have proposed building low-income housing within its ritzy complex, but those folks wouldn't be able to share the same amenities as everyone else. The current plans for 8899 Beverly Blvd. have low-income housing overlooking the pool that they wouldn't be able to use, WEHOville reports. The city isn't happy with the proposal.
    Written on Wednesday, 06 August 2014 00:28 Read more...
  • Defense Dept. Studying Protesters to Prepare for ‘Mass Civil Breakdown’
    Defense Dept. Studying Protesters to Prepare for ‘Mass Civil Breakdown’ Social science is being militarised to develop ‘operational tools’ to target peaceful activists and protest movements.
    Written on Sunday, 03 August 2014 22:59 Read more...
  • Orr gives control of Detroit's water department to mayor
    Orr gives control of Detroit's water department to mayor

    The city’s emergency manager on Tuesday issued an order that ramps up Mayor Mike Duggan’s responsibilities over the Detroit Water and Sewerage Department.

    The Emergency Manager Order 31, issued by Kevyn Orr, gives the mayor the power to manage the utility and make appointments to the Board of Water Commissioners.

    Written on Tuesday, 29 July 2014 18:36 Read more...
  • Call Your Representative Today. Urge Them To Stop Closing Local SSA Offices and Cutting Vital Services!

    SocialSecurityBanner

    Over the last few years, the Social Security Administration (SSA) has seen its budget frozen and reduced, resulting in 11,000 fewer staff to provide customer service to the roughly 25 million Americans that visited their local SSA office in 2013.

    Written on Tuesday, 22 July 2014 04:04 Read more...
  • Rep. Keith Ellison Wants to Make Union Organizing a Civil Right
    Rep. Keith Ellison Wants to Make Union Organizing a Civil Right DETROIT – Minnesota Democratic Rep. Keith Ellison plans to unveil legislation that would make unionization into a legally protected civil right, the congressman said on Saturday.
    Written on Tuesday, 22 July 2014 00:05 Read more...
  • Detroit suspends water shutoffs for 15 days
    Detroit suspends water shutoffs for 15 days

    The Detroit Water and Sewerage Department is suspending its water shutoffs for 15 days starting today to give residents another chance to prove they are unable to pay their bills.

    “In case we have missed someone who has legitimate affordability problems this will allow them to come to us to see if they can work out payments,” department spokesman Bill Johnson said. “We’ve always maintained that what we were doing was a collection effort — not a shutoff effort.”

    Written on Monday, 21 July 2014 17:01 Read more...
  • Hundreds Turn Out To Protest Detroit Water Shutoffs
    Hundreds Turn Out To Protest Detroit Water Shutoffs

    As many as one thousand people showed up outside Cobo Center in downtown Detroit Friday, calling for an immediate moratorium on service shutoffs by the city’s water department.

    Among them was “Avengers” actor Mark Ruffalo, who appeared unexpectedly, calling on others to join the demonstration.

    Written on Friday, 18 July 2014 20:33 Read more...
  • Detroit water shut-offs condemned as threat to health
    Detroit water shut-offs condemned as threat to health

    The decision by the bankrupt city of Detroit to cut off the water supply to 80,000 homes with outstanding water bills is a public health disaster in the making, says the largest professional association of nurses in the US.

    National Nurses United has called for an immediate moratorium on the shut-offs, and is leading a march in Detroit on Friday to make its demands clear.

    Written on Tuesday, 15 July 2014 18:03 Read more...
  • A National Call to Link Arms for Detroit: Stop the Water Shut Offs and Restore Democracy – July 18th Protest
    A National Call to Link Arms for Detroit: Stop the Water Shut Offs and Restore Democracy –  July 18th Protest

    On July 18th thousands of activists and dozens of organizations will converge on downtown Detroit to protest the privatization of the city’s assets, and the disconnection of water to tens of thousands of low-income residents; what the UN has called a human rights violation. Demonstrators from around the country will rally in Hart Plaza at 1PM, linking arms with the citizens of Detroit to protest the hostile corporate takeover by Wall Street banks and their ALEC-led political allies in the Michigan Statehouse, including Governor Rick Snyder.

    Written on Tuesday, 08 July 2014 20:00 Read more...
  • This Bus Is Transforming The Lives Of The Homeless
    This Bus Is Transforming The Lives Of The Homeless

    Most of us have suffered through the frustration of needing to quickly get ready for work, only to have to wait for a roommate to finish his shower. Now imagine having to share that shower with not one or two other people, but hundreds.

    That’s precisely the situation facing San Francisco’s estimated 6,436 homeless residents, who currently have just seven places in the city where they can shower.

    Written on Wednesday, 02 July 2014 21:36 Read more...
  • Detroit's Water War: a tap shut-off that could impact 300,000 people
    Detroit's Water War: a tap shut-off that could impact 300,000 people

    A right-wing state and corporate push to cut off water is economic shock therapy at its most ruthless and racist, but resistance is growing. Since spring, up to 3000 Detroit households per week have been getting their water shut-off – for owing as little as $150 or two months in bills.  The official rationale for the water shut-downs – the Detroit Water Department's need to recoup millions – collapses on inspection. Detroit's high-end golf club, the Red Wing's hockey arena, the Ford football stadium, and more than half of the city's commercial and industrial users are also owing – a sum totalling $30 million. But no contractors have showed up on their doorstep.

    Written on Tuesday, 01 July 2014 12:20 Read more...
  • In Sign of 'New Economy' Rising, Vermont Bill Champions Worker-Owned Co-ops
    In Sign of 'New Economy' Rising, Vermont Bill Champions Worker-Owned Co-ops

    Worker-owned co-ops got a boost on Monday when Independent Senator Bernie Sanders unveiled an initiative in Vermont that champions what many call "the new economy."“At a time when corporate America is outsourcing millions of decent-paying jobs overseas and with the economy continuing to struggle to create jobs that pay a livable wage, we need to expand economic models that help the middle-class," Sanders said during a press conference in Burlington. "I strongly believe that employee ownership is one of those models.

    Written on Sunday, 08 June 2014 13:43 Read more...
  • 'Labor priests' reviving social justice teachings -- and action
    'Labor priests' reviving social justice teachings -- and action

    "Labor priests" were a recognized presence in the labor movement of the 1920s through the 1960s. Father Barry, the Karl Malden character in the 1954 film "On the Waterfront," was the model of the priest who sided with workers.

    Priests conducted Parish Labor Schools where workers interested in collective bargaining studied Catholic social justice doctrine, labor law, and parliamentary procedure.

    Written on Saturday, 07 June 2014 19:13 Read more...
  • Why I Support the Fast Food Workers Strike
    Why I Support the Fast Food Workers Strike

    Fast food workers across America aren't waiting on Congress to raise their pay. This week, they’re taking matters into their own hands by organizing a nationwide strike aimed at securing better pay for their families and basic rights in the workplace.

    Written on Thursday, 15 May 2014 15:34 Read more...
  • Chicanos, how did we become America’s new slave culture?
    Chicanos, how did we become America’s new slave culture?

    In my journey as a community activist and Chicano advocate, I’ve experienced many fascinating elements that have inspired me but also scarred me to my very soul. I have fought the Chicano politician who capitulated in the selling out of his community, broke bread with the “Old Man” whom lent the little he had but gave unselfishly of his wisdom, and have shared space with our sons who have fallen victim to a privatized prison system. I have fought the white dragon of racism and today… today will begin the telling of those many travels.

    Written on Thursday, 15 May 2014 00:58 Read more...
  • Democrat? Green? Independent? The ‘Run Bernie Run’ Jockeying
    Democrat? Green? Independent? The ‘Run Bernie Run’ Jockeying

    Northampton, Massachusetts—When Bernie Sanders said in a Nation interview in March that he was prepared—not at all certain, but prepared—to run for the presidency, that got a lot of political activists thinking.

    Written on Monday, 12 May 2014 20:46 Read more...
  • US Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont launches Progressive Democrats of America 10th anniversary in Northampton
    US Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont launches Progressive Democrats of America 10th anniversary in Northampton

    Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders does not believe his support for the working class makes him unusual.
     
    Though he finds that many people who call themselves progressives believe they are in the minority, he does not believe this about himself, he said.
     
    “Every idea I ever espoused, I believe, is what the vast majority of our country believe,” Sanders told a crowd of around 400 people who filled the sanctuary at First Churches Friday for “A Conversation with Senator Bernie Sanders,” an event sponsored by The Nation magazine, Progressive Democrats of America, and radio station WHMP.

    Written on Monday, 12 May 2014 13:09 Read more...
  • Bernie Sanders bound for Iowa
    Bernie Sanders bound for Iowa

    WASHINGTON – First, he traveled to New Hampshire. Now he's bound for Iowa.

    Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., is hitting all the familiar campaign stops as he considers whether to run for president in 2016.

    Written on Thursday, 08 May 2014 14:42 Read more...
  • Progressive Democrats meeting May 8 to organize Sanders '16 presidential run
    Progressive Democrats meeting May 8 to organize Sanders '16 presidential run

    Vermont Democratic Socialist to be in Iowa on May 17

    DES MOINES — Jeff Cox isn't sure what it means that Sen. Bernie Sanders will be visiting Iowa later this month, “but I do know it's a long way from Vermont.”

    “I was a bit surprised that he was on the program,” Cox said about Sanders' planned appearance at the May 17 Clinton County Democratic Hall of Fame dinner.

    Written on Thursday, 08 May 2014 00:06 Read more...
  • More Than A Fifth Of America’s Children Are Going Hungry
    More Than A Fifth Of America’s Children Are Going Hungry

    More than one in five American kids lived in a “food insecure” household in 2012, according to the newest annual Mapping the Meal Gap report from anti-hunger charity Feeding America.

    The food insecurity rate for children nationwide is 21.6 percent. That number rises to almost three in ten kids for a long list of states including New Mexico (29.2 percent), Mississippi (28.7 percent), Arizona (28.2 percent), Nevada (28.1 percent), Georgia (28.1 percent), Arkansas (27.7 percent), Florida (27.6 percent), and Texas (27.4 percent).

    Written on Tuesday, 22 April 2014 12:37 Read more...
  • Bernie Sanders Warns Americans Are Losing Faith In The Political System
    Bernie Sanders Warns Americans Are Losing Faith In The Political System

    MANCHESTER, N.H., April 12 (Reuters) - Vermont U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders warned that a growing number of Americans were losing faith in the political system at a New Hampshire site that often hosts presidential primary debates. But he said he is "many, many months" away from deciding on a White House run.

    Written on Monday, 14 April 2014 19:01 Read more...
  • Greedy Oligarchs Oppose Minimum Wage
    Greedy Oligarchs Oppose Minimum Wage

    One of the hot issues in this year’s political races is whether the Federal minimum wage should be increased.  It might seem obvious that if lower-income people had more money to spend it would be good for almost everyone.  President Obama and the Democrats have proposed that it be raised from its current $7.25 an hour to $10.10.  Certainly, it would benefit the 17 million workers who’d get the increase—two-thirds of them women, who generally make less than men to start with.  So raising the minimum wage would be a step toward pay equity. Some states have higher minimums, but none above the proposed level. Two states, Maryland and Connecticut have moved theirs up to the $10.10 level.

    Written on Saturday, 12 April 2014 18:25 Read more...
  • Bernie Sanders seeks to pull Democrats left in 2016 primary
    Bernie Sanders seeks to pull Democrats left in 2016 primary

    WASHINGTON — Bernie Sanders has been calling activists and traveling the country with a question: Could he vault from his US Senate seat representing what is fondly called the People’s Republic of Vermont to the White House?

    His next stop in search of an answer is the first presidential primary state of New Hampshire, where this weekend he plans to bring his campaign complaint about America becoming an “oligarchic society.’’

    Written on Saturday, 12 April 2014 14:25 Read more...
  • Nurses and lawmakers resume push for financial transactions tax
    Nurses and lawmakers resume push for financial transactions tax

    WASHINGTON (PAI)--Saying it would raise money, curb speculators and force the financial finaglers who caused the Great Recession to partially pay for its impact on you and me, National Nurses United and the Congressional Progressive Caucus relaunched their drive for a financial transactions tax.

    Written on Thursday, 10 April 2014 13:29 Read more...
  • 'With Liberty and Justice for All' -- Our Democracy on the Brink
    'With Liberty and Justice for All' -- Our Democracy on the Brink

    The promise of "liberty and justice for all" remains a vital part of our nation's Pledge of Allegiance, and is embedded in our childhood memories of starting each school day with this oath. 

    Written on Tuesday, 08 April 2014 15:54 Read more...
  • GOP’s shameful treatment of the powerless
    GOP’s shameful treatment of the powerless

    The Bible’s injunction that we shall be judged by how we have treated the “least of these” (Matthew 25:40) appears in different forms in virtually every religion or faith. And surely the measure of a country is how it treats the most vulnerable of its people — children in the dawn of life, the poor in the valley of life, the ailing in the shadows of life, the elderly in the dusk of life.

    Written on Tuesday, 08 April 2014 00:58 Read more...
  • NELP Applauds Senate Vote to Renew Emergency Jobless Aid
    NELP Applauds Senate Vote to Renew Emergency Jobless Aid

    Unemployed Ohio Navy Veteran Urges House Speaker Boehner to Hold Vote

    Statement of Christine Owens, executive director of the National Employment Law Project, on the U.S. Senate’s passage of the bipartisan five month renewal of federal Emergency Unemployment Compensation:

    Written on Tuesday, 08 April 2014 00:18 Read more...
  • Thoughts on a Bernie Sanders Run
    Thoughts on a Bernie Sanders Run

    ... if the candidate has a real mass base, is building a broad progressive front around a clear, transformational program, and sees the candidacy as one step in a multitiered process, then it might be worth going for it.

    Written on Sunday, 06 April 2014 00:27 Read more...
  • How Social Security Was Saved
    How Social Security Was Saved

    The release of the White House’s 2014 budget in April 2013 was a stomach-churning occasion for American seniors who depend on Social Security. In an effort to woo the austerity-now crowd, President Barack Obama included in his proposal a new formula to calculate Social Security cost-of-living adjustments: the chained consumer price index, or chained CPI. Presented as a harmless technocratic fix, chained CPI would have hit America’s retirees in the pocketbook by reducing their Social Security cost-of-living increases.

    Written on Tuesday, 25 March 2014 00:00 Read more...
  • 'Better Off' Budget Attacks Status Quo with Bold Progressive Vision
    'Better Off' Budget Attacks Status Quo with Bold Progressive Vision

    Economic blueprint by Congressional Progressive Caucus makes commanding argument for what's possible, but will it again be ignored by nation's powerful elite?

    Written on Thursday, 13 March 2014 22:09 Read more...
  • Why I Didn’t Make it to Gaza for International Women’s Day
    Why I Didn’t Make it to Gaza for International Women’s Day

    When I boarded the plane to Cairo, Egypt, to make sure everything was in place for the women’s delegation headed to Gaza, I had no reason to think I’d end up in a jail cell at the Cairo airport and then violently deported.

    Written on Thursday, 13 March 2014 18:51 Read more...
  • UDC Law School - Social Justice Law
    UDC Law School - Social Justice Law

    The public service-oriented UDC David A. Clarke School of Law (www.law.udc.edu) is the public law school of the nation’s capital. Unlike most other law schools in America, all UDC-DCSL students receive a high-quality, practical, hands-on program of legal study. In addition to the traditional law curriculum, each UDC-DCSL student, under the close supervision of attorney-professors, provides 700 hours of much-needed legal service to low-income Washington, DC residents in one of the School’s eight clinics.

    Written on Tuesday, 11 March 2014 19:20 Read more...
  • I was brutally attacked.
    I was brutally attacked.

    Just the other day I hopped on a plane to Egypt, eager to join the international delegation of 100 women headed to Gaza for International Women’s Day. Little did I know I would be stopped at the Cairo airport, detained, held overnight in a cell, then in the morning brutally assaulted by Egyptian authorities. 

    Written on Thursday, 06 March 2014 21:42 Read more...
  • Bernie Sanders: ‘I Am Prepared to Run for President of the United States’
    Bernie Sanders: ‘I Am Prepared to Run for President of the United States’

    Bernie Sanders says he is “prepared to run for president of the United States.” That’s not a formal announcement. A lot can change between now and 2016, and the populist senator from Vermont bristles at the whole notion of a permanent campaign.

    Written on Thursday, 06 March 2014 21:24 Read more...
  • 2 Million People Cut Off Unemployment Benefits
    2 Million People Cut Off Unemployment Benefits

    WASHINGTON – The number of people who have lost their unemployment benefits as a result of the Emergency Unemployment Compensation program’s expiration has surpassed two million this week, according to a new analysis from Ways and Means Committee Democrats.

    Written on Wednesday, 05 March 2014 17:01 Read more...
  • Egyptian Police Detain, Assault, & Deport Peace Activist Medea Benjamin
    Egyptian Police Detain, Assault, & Deport Peace Activist Medea Benjamin

    On route to a women’s conference in Gaza, Code Pink founder and peace activist Medea Benjamin was detained by Egyptian police and held in an airport prison cell for several hours without being charged. During her detention, the petite Benjamin said she was “jumped on” by Egyptian police and “violently handcuffed” resulting in a  fractured my arm, dislocated my shoulder, torn ligaments.

    Written on Tuesday, 04 March 2014 21:20 Read more...
  • CODEPINK Co-founder Medea Benjamin Detained, Brutally Attacked and Deported from Egypt en route to Gaza with International Delegation of Women
    CODEPINK Co-founder Medea Benjamin Detained, Brutally Attacked and Deported from Egypt en route to Gaza with International Delegation of Women

    CODEPINK Co-founder Medea Benjamin Detained, Brutally Attacked and Deported from Egypt en route to Gaza with International Delegation of Women

    Written on Tuesday, 04 March 2014 16:45 Read more...
  • The Progressive Movement Continues to Mature and Grow
    The Progressive Movement Continues to Mature and Grow

    In case you hadn't noticed, the debt ceiling was raised several days ago, so quietly that it barely made a ripple in the press. No threats of shutting down the government or hostage-taking emanated from Senator Mitch McConnell -- or from his even more radical right-wing cronies in the House -- this recent go around.

    Written on Friday, 28 February 2014 02:55 Read more...
  • What a Victory: How a $40 Million Attack on the Middle Class Went Up in Smoke
    What a Victory: How a $40 Million Attack on the Middle Class Went Up in Smoke

    It’s debt ceiling time, and the United States economy is once again on the brink, held hostage by extremists hell-bent on forcing cuts to Medicare and Social Security. Oh, wait. That was last year. In 2014, for the first time in three years, the vote to extend the nation’s debt ceiling did not bring the United States to the brink of default in a high-stakes game of slash and burn.

    Written on Sunday, 23 February 2014 16:37 Read more...
  • The United States of Poverty and Inequality
    The United States of Poverty and Inequality

    New report shows that no matter which state you live in, the 1% are making even more gains as the rest fall back

    Over the last three decades the wealth of the nation's very richest 1% has grown ten times that of the average worker and over that time period that same tiny elite has captured more than half of the entire income increases, leaving the bottom 99% to divide the remaining gains.

    Written on Saturday, 22 February 2014 16:11 Read more...
  • Michael Sam stands tall
    Michael Sam stands tall

    “I’m a football player, and I’m gay.” With those words, Michael Sam, an All-American defensive end from the University of Missouri, demonstrated courage far beyond that demanded on the football field. And America may, for the first time, witness an openly gay man playing professional football.

    Written on Wednesday, 12 February 2014 03:20 Read more...
  • Preserve social programs that work
    Preserve social programs that work

    I started a chapter of the Progressive Democrats of America in Springfield a few years ago. Since then our chapter has grown to include the Greater Springfield Area. At an event last fall in front of U.S. Sen. Richard Durbin’s office we had 75 folks attend from various unions and organizations, many of them traveling from Normal, Bloomington, Peoria, Jacksonville, Morrisonville and Champaign.

    Written on Friday, 07 February 2014 03:25 Read more...
  • Conversations with Great Minds P1 - Rep Keith Ellison - My Country 'Tis of Thee
    Conversations with Great Minds P1 - Rep Keith Ellison - My Country 'Tis of Thee

    Congressman Keith Ellison(D-MN, 5th District) / Author of the new book, My Country 'Tis of Thee: My Faith, My Family, Our Future joins Thom Hartmann.

    Written on Thursday, 06 February 2014 22:36 Read more...
  • JESSE JACKSON: Response to President Obama's 2014 State of the Union Address
    JESSE JACKSON: Response to President Obama's 2014 State of the Union Address

    The country seems turned off and tuned out to the Congress, politics generally and the federal government in particular. The good news is the emerging grass-roots movement exemplified by The Dreamers and the burgeoning campaign among low income workers around the nation, offering a clear challenge to the political gridlock, the inaction and non-work by Congress. Seeking to respond to this grassroots energy and to combat the frustration many people are feeling around the country, President Obama presented an optimistic tone, an uplifting message and a new plan of action to move America forward.

    Written on Thursday, 30 January 2014 20:01 Read more...
  • State of the Union: Right on Wages, Wrong on Trade
    State of the Union: Right on Wages, Wrong on Trade

    President Obama wants 2014 to be a “year of action” in which the country finally begins to address a wealth gap that has made the term “income inequality” the catchphrase of the moment. And he framed the crisis well in his fifth State of the Union address:

    Written on Wednesday, 29 January 2014 17:32 Read more...
  • House passes $956B farm bill
    House passes $956B farm bill

    The House on Wednesday approved a mammoth, $956 billion farm bill in a bipartisan vote.

    Members approved the House-Senate agreement on farm policy in a 251-166 vote. A majority of Republicans backed the bill, with 63 GOP no votes. But a majority of Democrats opposed it, with 103 voting no.

    Written on Wednesday, 29 January 2014 16:45 Read more...
  • Pete Seeger: This Man Surrounded Hate and Forced it to Surrender
     Pete Seeger: This Man Surrounded Hate and Forced it to Surrender

    When some of the greatest musicians in the world gathered five years ago to celebrate the ninetieth birthday of the musician who inspired them all, Bruce Springsteen told Pete Seeger: “You outlasted the bastards, man.”

    And so he did.

    Written on Wednesday, 29 January 2014 16:30 Read more...
  • State of the Union: It doesn’t have to be this way
    State of the Union: It doesn’t have to be this way

    President Barack Obama’s State of the Union address Tuesday night will focus on inequality, on the reality that this economy does not work for working people. Given the obstruction of House and Senate Republicans, the president faces the reality that little of what he proposes can pass this Congress. He has vowed to use his “pen” and “phone” to act unilaterally where he can. But the real challenge is to explain to the American people what the reality is, what must be done and who is standing in the way.

    Written on Tuesday, 28 January 2014 15:56 Read more...
  • Ellison’s Steps to Income Equality: More Powerful Unions and Weaker Trade
    Ellison’s Steps to Income Equality: More Powerful Unions and Weaker Trade

    Congressional Progressive Caucus co-chairman Rep. Keith Ellison (D-Minn.) said that increasing the power of unions is key to addressing income inequality in America.

    “We need a comprehensive plan, but let’s start with increasing the right to collective bargaining,” Ellison said on MSNBC. “We’ve got to get workers on the job in a position to demand that the wealth that they create be shared by the company. That’s a key thing. If you look at how wages has stagnated in the United States and you look at how union did something that has gone down, the lines track right together. You got to get power in the hands of the workers. That’s key.”

    Written on Thursday, 23 January 2014 18:18 Read more...
  • Celebrating MLK: A drum major for justice
    Celebrating MLK: A drum major for justice

    As I went from event to event Monday celebrating the birthday of Martin Luther King, I was struck by both the tribute and the distortion.

    The tribute is remarkable. Martin Luther King held no public office. He amassed no great fortune. He led no victorious armies

    Written on Tuesday, 21 January 2014 16:03 Read more...
  • Keith Ellison Blasts Inaction on Government-Backed Poverty: “The Most Remarkable Dodge I’ve Ever Seen”
    Keith Ellison Blasts Inaction on Government-Backed Poverty: “The Most Remarkable Dodge I’ve Ever Seen”

    One day after a top Obama administration official deflected a congressman’s call for executive action to raise labor standards for contractors, activists Wednesday announced the filing of a new Department of Labor complaint over alleged wage theft in a government building. The complaint alleges that dozens of workers in D.C.’s government-owned Union Station are owed over $3 million in back pay and damages for rampant failure to pay minimum wage or overtime.

    Written on Saturday, 18 January 2014 16:26 Read more...
  • King’s evolving Dream
    King’s evolving Dream

    It is that time to pause and think about the incredible life and contributions of the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., oftentimes referred to as MLK. He was named Michael King Jr. after his father ­ who later changed both their names to Martin Luther, in honor of the religious reformer.

    Written on Saturday, 18 January 2014 15:37 Read more...
  • Moral Monday Movement Spreads Through the South
    Moral Monday Movement Spreads Through the South

    After drawing thousands of protesters to the state legislature and inspiring the arrests of more than 900 people for nonviolent civil disobedience, North Carolina's Moral Monday movement challenging the extreme conservative agenda of the state's Republican-controlled legislature and administration is gearing up for more actions in 2014.

    Written on Monday, 13 January 2014 13:30 Read more...
  • On 50th anniversary of 'War on Poverty' speech, Worcester Rep. Jim McGovern says cuts to SNAP are 'war on poor people'
    On 50th anniversary of 'War on Poverty' speech, Worcester Rep. Jim McGovern says cuts to SNAP are 'war on poor people'

    U.S. Rep. Jim McGovern says the "War on Poverty" has shifted from helping the poor to fighting them.

    McGovern, a Democrat who represents the 2nd district, spoke on the floor of the House of Representatives Wednesday about hunger in America and potential cuts to SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) in the proposed Farm Bill.

    Written on Saturday, 11 January 2014 15:37 Read more...
  • War on Poverty wages on
    War on Poverty wages on

    Fifty years ago this week, President Lyndon Johnson, lamenting that too many Americans “live on the outskirts of hope,” declared an “unconditional war on poverty in America.” This will not be “a short or easy struggle,” he stated in his State of the Union address to the Congress, “no single weapon or strategy will suffice, but we will not rest until that war is won. The richest nation on earth can afford to win it. We cannot afford to lose it.”

    Written on Tuesday, 07 January 2014 18:11 Read more...
  • Will New York City Lead the Way on Pre-K?
    Will New York City Lead the Way on Pre-K?

    At the Future of America Learning Center in the West Bronx, the pre-K curriculum is built around adult jobs—visiting real workplaces and then learning about the vocabulary and skills that grown-ups use every day.

    Written on Tuesday, 07 January 2014 01:24 Read more...
  • Advice for Young Women: Get a Union Job
    Advice for Young Women: Get a Union Job

    Back in the days before modern feminism, a young woman looking for work might typically be advised, politely, to “learn a trade,” with the implication that she wasn't bound for college or an elite career, but a humbler job as, say, a secretary or seamstress. Such a phrase might sound condescending today. Yet working in a trade might still be sound career goal for a woman, if she gets the right kind of job—in a union.

    Written on Tuesday, 24 December 2013 21:30 Read more...
  • Walmart Workers Will Make History on Friday As America Confronts Growing Inequality
    Walmart Workers Will Make History on Friday As America Confronts Growing Inequality

    This Friday, the busiest shopping day of the year, tens of millions of Americans will travel to Walmart stores to look for holiday discounts on computers, toys, and cell phones as well as to buy groceries and basic household items.

    Written on Saturday, 30 November 2013 15:20 Read more...
  • McDonald's: Low-Paid Workers, High-Flying Execs
    McDonald's: Low-Paid Workers, High-Flying Execs

    He was CEO of the hamburger behemoth, McDonald's, pulling down a hefty $8.8 million in pay. Last year, though, Skinner retired, and, rather than getting a gold watch, he was given a load of gold — so large that even a Brink's armored truck would have been too small to haul it all away. His salary of $753,000 was the least of it.

    Written on Thursday, 21 November 2013 13:44 Read more...
  • Growing Movement: Expand Social Security or 'Pay a Price'
    Growing Movement: Expand Social Security or 'Pay a Price'

    Sen. Warren: 'Social Security is incredibly effective, it is incredibly popular, and the calls for strengthening it are growing louder every day.'

    With Social Security cuts once again on the table in closed-door congressional budget negotiations, a growing movement has taken the offensive, demanding that lawmakers strengthen, rather than stranglehold, our social safety net.

    Written on Thursday, 21 November 2013 13:36 Read more...
  • Paul Ryan Gets 700,000 ‘No’ Votes on Social Security Cuts
    Paul Ryan Gets 700,000 ‘No’ Votes on Social Security Cuts

    Ryan’s office on Wednesday received a petition signed by more than 700,000 people that said there should be “no grand bargain” in the budget negotiations being led by Ryan and Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash., “in exchange for cuts to Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid benefits.”

    Written on Saturday, 16 November 2013 03:10 Read more...
  • House Dems Can Block GOP Food Stamp Cuts—By Killing the Farm Bill
    House Dems Can Block GOP Food Stamp Cuts—By Killing the Farm Bill

    The farm bill will almost inevitably include deep cuts to the food stamps program—unless House Democrats join with conservatives to kill the bill. The food stamps program—which helps feed one in seven Americans—is in peril. Republicans in the House have proposed a farm bill—the five-year bill that funds agriculture and nutrition programs—that would slash food stamps by $40 billion. But by taking advantage of House Republicans' desire to cut food stamps as much as possible, Democrats might be able to prevent cuts from happening at all.

    Written on Tuesday, 12 November 2013 15:28 Read more...
  • Food Stamps, Yes!
    Food Stamps, Yes!

    If you’re reading this column, you probably don’t participate in a government program such as SNAP, to help provide food for your family. If you can afford to have a newspaper delivered to your home, or if you have a computer and an internet connection so you can read online, you may have more than enough money for food.

    Written on Friday, 04 October 2013 01:50 Read more...

Does Your Legislator Support the Robin Hood Tax?

Join "Countdown to Coverage" Share TPP with your Daily Newspaper

CWA devised a simple plan for which they were uniquely suited: drag TPP out of the shadows and into the light - one city at a time - using a medium they understand intimately: Daily Newspapers!

Two CWA members - Dave Felice in Denver, CO and Madelyn Elder in Portland, OR have started the ball rolling. We just need to keep up the momentum leading up to a big day of petition deliveries.

Button-ShareTPPWithNewspaper

Step 1 is to send an Op-Ed to your Daily Newspaper.

Email Your Senators and Rep - Say No On Fast Track and TPP

Send an email directly to your Senators and Representatives courtesy of our partners at CWA. Enter your zip code and your members are automatically selected.

Button-EmailYourRep2

Sign the ERA Petition

ERADemandButton

On Friday, September 12th more than 150 activists will go to DC and Demand that their Senators and Representatives support removing the ratification deadline from the ERA (SJ Res 15 and HJ Res 113)

Button-SignERAPetition

Sign the Petition - Sen. Sanders Run as a Democrat in 2016

Button-SandersPetition

Find Your Elected Officials for Issues

Enter your zip+4 and find your elected officials. This link provides name, address and phone number

ButtonFindElectedOfficials

 

Hand Deliver a Letter to your Rep on Jobs

If your Representative is not currently a cosponsor of HR 1000 they may not completely understand how important full employment is to your community; click on your state at the bottom of this page to see all the cosponsors in your state. Nothing sends a stronger message to a Congressional member than a personal visit to a district office by a voter with a written request. Phone calls and emails are incredibly important but nothing gets attention like a personal visit. Our Educate Congress page has information and a sample letter. Print the letter, sign it, deliver it.

Button-HandDeliver

Report on your TPP Contact

Please let us know your legislator's stance on Fast Track Authorization for the Trans Pacific Partnership as well as their stance on the TPP in General. Click here to report the response.

The Robin Hood Tax

Robin Hood Tax: John Nichols and Keith Ellison and Michael Lighty

Why The Robin Hood Tax

Rep. Jim McGovern on Protecting SNAP

Workers Speak Out on the TPP

PDA Labor Panel - Progressive Central III

Main Street NOT Wall Street

The Trans Pacific Partnership: Corporate Global Domination

Lori Wallach on the TPP from PDA Progressive Roundtable

Progressive Roundtable with Reps. Ellison and Pocan and Lori Wallach on TPP

Lori Wallach Leaked TPP Documents (Democracy NOW)

TPP: The Biggest Threat to the Internet You've Probably Never Heard Of

Lori Wallach on Thom Hartmann (Great Minds) - The TPP

TPP Downloads

The following documents are available from the Oppose TPP Downloads Folder

June 29th TPP Powerpoint

CWA TPP Jobs Report

Endorse HR 1000

Read the bill text and endorse HR 1000 as an individual or an organization