Monday, September 1, 2014
Saturday, August 30, 2014
Sunday, August 24, 2014
The question is not whether the mayhem in Ferguson is being caused by a "small" group of discontents, or whether the other protestors are sincere in their wish for a peaceful solution. The question is why such discontent is no longer staying within the usual boundaries of home, bottle, and pipe. Why are the most desperate among us taking every opportunity to voice their discontent as often and as violently as possible?
The party is over. The well fed minority that have put this country into the hopper must back away from the trough. Address poverty and racism or bear the consequences; the violence that is endemic among the dispossessed survivors of eat-your-own capitalism will be in all our streets, all our homes, all our neighborhoods.
The time for halfway solutions is past. To break the cycle of drop out-to-gang-to-convict-to-criminal:
Extend Public Education Through College
End the Reign of the Golden School
Free All Prisoners Convicted of Victimless Crimes.
Nationalize the Healthcare Industry.
And to pay for it? Well, in the past the privileges of the minority came from the sale of human beings (now it comes from privatized prisons, the Judge is extra).
There is a better way:
Replace All Entitlements with a Basic Income Guarantee and Healthcare.
And who is Occupy or anyone to be making that kind of "demand." To which this editorialist says "There is no power like stating the truth: it's time to share the wealth."
Replace All Entitlements with a Basic Income Guarantee and Healthcare
was one of the 10 Objectives offered by the InterOccupy Strategy Group.
And, for the record the demands of the Black Panthers are below and here:
Michael Brown is dead. Stopping more such murders means trying a little harder than replacing a police chief.
Thursday, May 29, 2014
Thursday, May 22, 2014
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Friday, May 16, 2014
I'm writing to invite you to join us as we embark on making single-payer one of the top issues of the current Massachusetts gubernatorial campaign season!
"How?" you might ask -- We plan to attend campaign events between now and the primary election in September and the general election in November to ask each candidate - Republican and Democrats - to commit to implementing a single payer system in Massachusetts if they are elected. We call this birddogging. Several candidates already support single-payer.
Why this strategy? Showing up at these events lets the candidates know that people in MA support single-payer. Plus, while they are seeking votes and trying to get elected, they are more likely to make policy commitments than when they are comfortably settled into their State House office. Students used this strategy during the 2008 presidential campaign to secure $50 billion in federal funding for global health and AIDS funding. It's as simple as showing up, asking your question, and taking a picture with the candidate-- as long as we repeat until our goal is reached!
Is there more to it? There is a little more to it -- so we are inviting you to get trained and to meet other students and single-payer advocates on Thursday, May 22nd, at Harvard Medical School. We will also provide an introduction to what a single-payer system could do for MA, as well as background on the gubernatorial candidates. If you cannot attend the training, but are interested in future birddogging opportunities, please fill out the form below and we will keep you updated about the campaign.
What: Birddogging training and more on single-payer and the current candidates for Governor
Where: Harvard Medical School, TMEC 109, 260 Longwood Ave
When: 6:30pm on Thursday, May 22nd
RSVP: Use the form below please!
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Friday, April 11, 2014
There are two important rally's coming up, please attend them. Details below.
3. We Pay Our Taxes, Are We Getting What We Need?
Saturday, April 12, 12:30 pm: Rally to Protest Corporate Tax Cheats
Bank of America, 440 Boylston St. at Berkeley St., Boston MA
2:00 pm Tax Day Forum
Emmanuel Church 15 Newbury St. Boston (Arlington T-stop<>wheelchair accessible)
2. Jobs Not Jails Rally, April 26, 1:00 pm, Boston Common.
1. Commentary & Editorial Note
1. Prisoner, Taxes, Liberals and Leftists
It's hard to argue with liberals. Not only do they stand for good things, but if you say the things that I'm about to say, you get accused of bad things. Go to the rallies. Power concedes nothing without a demand. But what if all the very good demands demanded by the very good liberals organizing the rallies were conceded, wouldn't we all still feel a bit stiffed?
SHRED TITLE 26: NO OLD TAXES.
The litany of wants put out by Budget For All conflates the income and expense side of the equation because the income side—that is Title 26, the Federal Tax Code—is so monstrously large and criminally obsolete that it is impossible to talk about with normal warm blood people. How much better to talk about the cuddly fuzzy end of what money could buy were there but enough of it in the coffers? More importantly, if one were to confine the debate to the tax code itself it would open a thousand different arguments about each of the thousands of clauses and qualifiers in the 17 volume maze that sucks in whatever it can get by the tax attorneys. (It exists in fact to feed tax attorneys and CPA's.)
FREE THE CPA'S.
And each of those clauses and qualifiers has a constituency that will fight tooth and nail to keep its little bit of pork in the tax code. There are thousands of them protecting every possible selfish-antiquated-hog-farm-rifle-factory-just-for-my-state-just-for-now-just-a-little-bit-back-slapping-opportunistic kind of credit or tax imaginable. If a carbon tax were passed it would disappear in the muck. In fact, the most common kinds of legislation passed by the Congress are changes to the tax code. They change it so often, daily at some points, that it is impossible to know exactly what is and what is not being taxed at any one moment.
The US Federal Tax Payer Advocate, our voice at the IRS, Nina E. Olson, has put forth a plan that involves examining each clause of the code to see if it is worth the money it takes to implement. This plan has been ignored because it means demanding that the code be re-written from scratch, so that instead of a chicken wire and duct tape pastiche of the kick back du jour, it would instead comprise a system of carrots and sticks that could in turn guide a sustainable and just economy. That's what's called vision and that's what the liberals haven't got.
Got to the rally, but if you want radical change, bet on the Heartbleed Bug.
FREE ALL PRISONERS CONVICTED OF VICTIMLESS CRIMES
Jobs Not Jails priority is not demanding this, that is freedom for a group of people disproportionately comprised of the descendents of slaves. Their flyers says nothing about not about how the manufacture and up-keep of human cages has been privatized, in the same way that the slave industry that once caged many prisoner forbearers was a private, commercial endeavor. What are the liberals demanding? That the money be redirected away from jobs guarding prisoners to other programs, other kinds of jobs. That is, that caging people be less expensive. Well, why not just cut to the chance and let all those people out of jail?
Another World Is Possible,
PS: If you want radical change, check out the 100 Great Political Objectives on the Occupy Boston Wiki and the Occupy Strategy Group Strategic Objectives:
and see below.
These are my opinions. If you want to argue with me you can post to my blog or, with any luck, to the Occupy Boston website. I am going there now. Please join me. All are welcome.
We pay our taxes.
Are we getting what we need?
Tax Day 2014 offers our diverse groups the opportunity to come together as one and bring the needs of our communities and families into the public discussion.
What kind of society do we want? Do we want war and jails and a polluted planet to be our legacy to our children? Or do we want good jobs, fairness, a healthy planet, a decent home, quality public education, affordable health care, nutritious food, financial security during old age, and a government that belongs to all of us? All of our work on these critical issues is impacted by budget and tax policies coming from Washington. So let's come together for a tax day mobilization.
Saturday, April 12 Rally and Forum with:
Mel King <> Congresswoman Katherine Clark <> Congressman Jim McGovern <> Harris Gruman SEIU <> Carolyn Federoff AFGE Local 3258 <> Lew Finfer Raise Up Mass.<> Rep. Jay Livingstone <> Grace Ross <> Tilly Teixera MA Senior Action <> Joe Kebartas Vets/Peace <> Joann Thomas & Alan Booth MAHT <> Amy TigheEnvironmental Tax Reform <> Andrew Fish Mass PIRG <> Nathan Proctor Mass Fair Share <> Ed Woll Jr. MA Sierra Club <> M.K. Merelice Green Rainbow <> Dr. Richard Fine Medical Researcher <> Robert Folan-Johnson ACT UP <> Phyllis Evans NEU4J <> Phyllis Evans 25% Coalition <> firstname.lastname@example.orgMike Prokosch, Dorchester People for Peace <> Don Berwick <> Michael Kane Nat'l Alliance of HUD Tenants and other community leaders, all of whom will join people directly impacted by budget decisions -- AND YOU!
…….Plus special video greeting Senator Elizabeth Warren and from Barney Frank
12:30 Rally to Protest Corporate Tax Cheats
Bank of America 440 Boylston St. at Berkeley St. Boston
2:00 pm Tax Day Forum
Emmanuel Church 15 Newbury St. Boston (Arlington T-stop<>wheelchair accessible)
Our speakers join our neighbors impacted by destructive budget priorities to inform us about what we need to know and what we need to do.
Join us on April 12 to send a message to Washington about fair taxes and a budget that works for all of us:
· A budget that protects vital programs like social security, food stamps, veterans benefits and unemployment help
· A budget that creates a massive jobs program instead of a mass incarceration program
· A budget that provides revenues by ending offshore corporate tax havens, by instituting a carbon tax and by making those with the highest incomes have to pay the same effective tax rates as the rest of us.
· A budget that redirects Pentagon spending to public education, the rapid development of renewable energy technologies, green jobs, and to other domestic programs that bring us real security.
3. JOBS NOT JAILS
From Katrina and the Occupy Boston Health Justice listserv:
I want to spread the word about the JOBS NOT JAILS march on April 26th at 1pm on the Boston Common. The MA JOBS NOT JAILS organizers are hoping to have 10,000 people from all over MA fill the Boston Common. It would be great to have some allied health professionals attend so that we can acknowledge the consequences of mass incarceration on individual and public health. The organizers are also hoping to gather 50,000 signatures for their petition. Sign it now and forward to your friends, family, and colleagues. The march organizers are calling for people to pledge to attend the march and for organizations to endorse the march -- see the links below.
All the best,
p.s. If you want to learn more about the national movement to end mass incarceration here's a link to a great 1-hour long teach-in about the movement to end mass incarceration by Michelle Alexander on the Bill Moyers show. Here's a shorter Ted Talk by Michelle Alexander.