|Progressive Calendar 03.18.08||<– Date –> <– Thread –>|
|From: David Shove (shove001tc.umn.edu)|
|Date: Tue, 18 Mar 2008 04:29:53 -0700 (PDT)|
P R O G R E S S I V E C A L E N D A R 03.18.08 1. Muslim day 3.18 9am 2. Media reform 3.18 6pm 3. Irish poetry salon 3.18 6:30pm 4. Invest in energy 3.18 7pm 5. Climate change 3.18 7pm 6. Gay life/TV 3.18 11pm 7. Anti-war sick-out 3.19 8. Eyes open/war 3.19 12noon 9. Vs Iraq war 3.19 12noon Duluth MN 10. Women/welfare 3.19 12noon StCloud MN 11. MapleGrove HS/gay 3.19 2:15/7pm 12. Anti-war rally 3.19 4pm Bemidji MN 13. LakeStBridgeVigil 3.19 5pm 14. Colombia/unions 3.19 6pm 15. Winter soldiers 3.19 6:30pm 16. S StPaul vigil 3.19 7pm 17. Ronnie Cummins - Making Big Pharma buy the pharm 18. Levy/Neilson - All because I voted for Ralph Nader (song) --------1 of 18-------- From: "wamm [at] mtn.org" <wamm [at] mtn.org> Subject: Muslim day 3.18 9am Muslim Day at the Minnesota State Capitol (4th Annual) Tuesday, March 18, 9:00 a.m. (Training) Minnesota State Capitol Building, Room 118, 75 Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Boulevard, St. Paul.10:00 a.m. (Rally) Minnesota State Capitol, 75 Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Boulevard, St. Paul. Minnesota was the first state to hold the Muslim Day event and several states have followed since. A training session will be provided prior to a rally that will feature leaders of the Senate, House of Representatives and local Muslim leaders. Appointments have been made to meet with legislators so don't miss this opportunity to raise concerns with elected officials and to join fellow Muslims from across the state of Minnesota. Co-sponsored by: the Council on American-Islamic Relations Minnesota, Muslim Youth of Minnesota, Al-Madinah Cultural Center, and Muslim Students Association at the University of Minnesota. --------2 of 18-------- From: Nancy Doyle Brown <nancyjdoyle [at] yahoo.com> Subject: Media reform 3.18 6pm There are spaces available in two upcoming intro-to-media reform workshops. Please encourage anyone who's dissatisfied with our media system to attend and learn about how media reform can create the kind of media that informs democracy! Attend a free workshop on media reform! The news media have all but abandoned its obligation to serve the needs of an informed democracy. In the "Transforming Our Media System" workshop, learn about the basic problems with today's media and how we can unite to fix them with media reform activist Nancy Brown. Workshop times and locations: Tuesday, March 18, 6PM-8PM at Nokomis Community Library, 5100 34th Avenue South, Minneapolis, 55417 Tuesday, April 1, 6:30PM-8PM at Washburn Community Library, 5244 Lyndale Avenue South, Minneapolis, 55419 To sign up for one of these free workshops or to add your name to the Media Action email list, please email your name and phone number to nancy [at] tcmediaalliance.org. --------3 of 18-------- From: patty <pattypax [at] earthlink.net> Subject: Irish poetry salon 3.18 6:30pm March 18 is a wee bit late for St Paddy's Day celebration, but Irish poetry 'tis lovely any time of the year. So i am sending this early so you can find some Irish poetry and bring it to the Salon next Tuesday and we can have a little blarney. Green tea and shamrock cookies. Pax Salons ( http://justcomm.org/pax-salon ) are held (unless otherwise noted in advance): Tuesdays, 6:30 to 8:30 pm. Mad Hatter's Tea House, 943 W 7th, St Paul, MN Salons are free but donations encouraged for program and treats. Call 651-227-3228 or 651-227-2511 for information. --------4 of 18-------- From: FWG <jeiynck [at] fwg.com> Subject: Invest in energy 3.18 7pm Investing in Tomorrow: The Future of Energy Are you concerned about Global Warming and Peak Oil? What role can Alternative Energy play in your portfolio? RSVP to attend an informal discussion and Q&A Session Tuesday, March 18th 7:00pm - 8:30pm Common Roots Café, 2558 Lyndale Ave. S. Minneapolis Sponsored by Progressive Asset Management, MN Guest Speaker: Scott Metz, Regional Vice President, Calvert Funds RSVP to Jesse Eiynck, 651.338.1971 or jeiynck [at] fwg.com Securities offered through Financial West Group, Member FINRA/SIPC/MSRB Progressive Asset Management is the socially responsible investing division of FWG. Jesse Eiynck, Financial Advisor Progressive Asset Management, MN 1508 Old West Main St. Red Wing, MN 55066 Phone: 651-338-1971 Fax: 651-846-4946 --------5 of 18-------- From: Maya Petrovic <maya [at] headwatersfoundation.org> Subject: Climate change 3.18 7pm Climate Change and Environmental Equality Tuesday, March 18 - 7:00pm Bryant-Lake Bowl, Uptown Entire populations have been displaced by droughts and floods, as well as rising sea levels, which disrupt the food systems. Will climate change disproportionately affect poorer, less developed nations and communities? Join environmental activists Shalini Gupta and Cecilia Martinez for an in-depth discussion about the environmental impacts of global warming on communities worldwide. Shalini is on the Headwaters Board and Environmental Justice Fund grants committee. She is a senior energy associate at Izaak Walton League of America. Cecilia is on the Headwaters Fund of the Sacred Circle endowment campaign committee and is a consultant with the Women's Environmental Institute. Buy tickets online [http://rs6.net/tn.jsp?e=001uUy4goAsoM-3IwLwSTla_pqXlxlLQESxSIJgfgtpQcTb5Xy2aagwDr1ODoKSK5flTFE2lDmWXeJSEzH2L1H72W4YwtQEEBXb18--Mi6j84f2Vzwp3yqVSo7F8RF-cp_0mbo-_kV6PfHQ=] or RSVP by calling 612-825-8949. Cost: $5-$10 (pay what you can) For more information contact David Nicholson [mailto:david [at] headwatersfoundation.org], program director, Headwaters Foundation for Justice. --------6 of 18-------- From: IN THE LIFE <info [at] inthelifetv.org> Subject: Gay life/TV 3.18 11pm Documentary stories from the gay experience IN THE LIFE Airdate Alert "Voices of Sisterhood" Tuesday, March 18, 2008 at 11:00 PM on TPT - TWIN CITIES PUBLIC TELEVISION! Always at the forefront of the modern LGBT movement, women have shaped its perception and given it voice. This month's IN THE LIFE, Voices of Sisterhood, celebrates Women's History Month with a collection of stories honoring the struggles, triumphs, and art of LGBT women around the world. TPT - TWIN CITIES PUBLIC TELEVISION 172 East Fourth Street St. Paul Minnesota 55101-1447 viewerservices [at] tpt.org phone: (651) 222-1717 fax: (651) 222-1282 website: www.tpt.org --------7 of 18-------- From: Lydia Howell <lhowell [at] visi.com> Subject: Anti-war sick-out 3.19 (cough! cough!! moan..) SHARE WIDELY & URGE YOUR FRIENDS & FAMILY TO PARTICIPATE (be sick of shopping too! & consider no shopping that day either! Lydia Howell) FROM: vfp [at] veteransforpeace.net writes: The Twin Cities (St. Paul-Minneapolis MN) office of Veterans for Peace is at vfpchapter27 [at] gmail.com CONTACT: Michael T.McPhearson (314) 303-8874 SICK OF IT DAY Campaign Kicks Off Veterans For Peace today kicked off its March 19, 2008 "Sick Of It Day" campaign to end the war in Iraq. March 19 is the fifth anniversary of the invasion of Iraq, and the campaign is designed to give every person sick of the corruption, the lies and the war an opportunity to join with others in the classic civil resistance tactic of "withdrawing consent" from the system. Based on the principle taken from the Declaration of Independence that government requires the consent of the governed, everyone who joins Sick Of It Day will be actively withdrawing their consent, one by one, until the collective economic impact reverberates through Washington and politicians are faced with a choice: end the war or have an ungovernable country. Giving his personal reason why he is "sick of it," campaign originator and member of Iraq Veterans Against the War, Adam Kokesh said, "I am sick of seeing America in denial about how much we have been lied to." Veterans For Peace member and campaign organizer, Mike Ferner, explained "I've seen the pain on the faces of the people of Iraq and the soldiers who come back from war. It's something I can't get out of my mind and there are days when it really does make me sick." People who call in sick on March 19 can choose from a wide variety of other things to do that day - from contacting Congress and going back to bed, to more ambitious ideas like helping quarantine military shipments in U.S. ports. Campaigners are invited to come up with their own "Sick Of It Day" activity and post it to the site. site easy to use and easy to pass along to others. The success of Sick Of It Day depends on the idea going viral on the internet. With so many people sick of this war, we think there's a good chance it will." For more information, please visit www.sickofitday.org or www.veteransforpeace.org --------8 of 18-------- From: "wamm [at] mtn.org" <wamm [at] mtn.org> Subject: Eyes open/war 3.19 12noon "Eyes Wide Open Minnesota" Exhibit on the Human Cost of War Wednesday, March 19, Noon to 4:00 p.m. Minnesota State Capitol, Rotunda, 75 Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Boulevard, St. Paul. As the Iraq War begins its fifth year, take time to honor those who have died, and to contemplate the human cost of war. The Eyes Wide Open Minnesota exhibit presents a memorial to those who have fallen and a witness to our belief that no war can justify its human cost. It includes a pair of boots for each Minnesota soldier killed in Iraq, shoes representing Iraqi civilian casualties, and a visual display showing the human costs of war to our communities. Sponsored by: Merriam Park Neighbors for Peace and Crocus Hill/West 7th Neighbors for Peace. Co-sponsored by: Friends for a Non-Violent World, American Friends Service Committee, Veterans for Peace Chapter 27, Military Families Speak Out Minnesota, and WAMM. FF: Call Anne, 651-647-0580, email <march19 [at] mppeace.org> or visit <www.mppeace.org/march19>. --------9 of 18-------- From: Charles Underwood <charleyunderwood [at] hotmail.com> Subject: Vs Iraq war 3.19 12noon Duluth MN Wednesday, 3/19, noon, press conference and peace vigil against the Iraq war: "5 Years Too Many!" Civic Center, Duluth. adamritscher [at] gmail.com or northlandequana [at] gmail.com --------10 of 18-------- From: Erin Parrish <erin [at] mnwomen.org> Subject: Women/welfare 3.19 12noon StCloud MN Wednesday, March 19: Women's Center St. Cloud State University. Women on Wednesday - Still Fighting for Our Rights 30 Years Later presents Is There a Safety Net? Women, Welfare & Poverty with Bharti Wahi, Director of Programs & Membership at the Minnesota Women's Consortium. Noon-1 PM. Atwood Theatre, Atwood Memorial Center. --------11 of 18-------- From: David Strand <mncivil [at] yahoo.com> Subject: MapleGrove HS/gay 3.19 2:15/7pm Fwd. David Strand who would like to reiterate Leigh Combs call for support of these brave students from Maple Grove High School who shouldn't have had to sue their school for the right to meet as a gropus of students in support of equal rights for glbt people. SAGE (Straights and Gays for Equality) Straights and Gays for Equality, a group formed to address discrimination against gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender students at Maple Grove Senior High School, will present a forum. Wednesday, March 19th. 2:15 P.M. and again at 7:00 P.M. Maple Grove Senior High School 9800 Fernbrook Lane North Maple Grove , MN , 55369 The two students (now college sophomores) who initiated a lawsuit against the Osseo School District will discuss the circumstances which prompted them to sue and the results of the proceedings to date. SAGE students will discuss how conditions at Maple Grove Senior High have changed because of the suit and how they are working to raise awareness about GLBT issues and address anti-GLBT bias. There will be a question and answer period at the end. The forum is open to students, staff, and the community. For more information, please contact Donna Speake, SAGE advisor, at 763-391-8715. Article: http://wcco.com/education/Maple.Grove.Senior.2.370479.html Leigh Combs GLBT KIDS: Abuse Intervention Program Coordinator Family & Children's Service 4123 East Lake Street Minneapolis, MN 55406-2028 612-728-2079 statewide GLBT KIDS Information Line: 1-877-GLBT-KID (1-877-452-8543) --------12 of 18-------- From: A Thayer <athayer [at] paulbunyan.net> Subject: Anti-war rally 3.19 4pm Bemidji MN This Wednesday afternoon, March 19th on 3rd and Paul Bunyan Drive in downtown Bemidji between 4pm and 6pm a few of the community members will gather to mark the 5th anniversary of the invasion of Iraq. This is to bring attention to the issues that are affecting this entire county and our community, in addition honoring the fallen, we are trying to send a clear message in this sinking economy: it's time to end the war, and start using the billions wasted every week on the Iraq occupation to help folks here at home. The Bemidji Peace and Justice Coalition will once again stand on the streets of Bemidji - there may only be few of us but the importance is we are there, concerned and willing to give our time to express hope that people will consider the negative affects of this war. Would you consider giving a few moments, 10 minutes, 30 minutes, or two (2) hours with us with a homemade sign expressing your opinion to share with those driving by? You efforts along with mine are important. We are so quiet - wanting change - but afraid to step out, concerned we might be challenged by a friend, neighbor or co-worker on your opinion..we are to be living in a democracy..we have a right to express our thoughts..please come this Wednesday. Audrey M. Thayer Member Bemidji Peace and Justice Coalition --------13 of 18-------- From: "wamm [at] mtn.org" <wamm [at] mtn.org> Subject: LakeStBridge vigil 3.19 5pm "Not One More Death! Not One More Dollar" Lake Street/Marshall Avenue Bridge Vigil and Potluck, Program with U.S. Iraqi War Veterans and Sami Rasouli Wednesday, March 19, 5:00 to 6:00 p.m. (Vigil) Lake Street/Marshall Avenue Bridge spanning the Mississippi River between Minneapolis and St. Paul. Join us on March 19, the anniversary of the start of the U.S. war on Iraq by attending the weekly Peace Vigil over the Mississippi River. 6:30 p.m. (Potluck and Program) Macalester Plymouth United Church. 1658 Lincoln Avenue, (one block south of Grand Avenue and just west of the Macalester College campus), St. Paul. [See item 15 below] --------14 of 18-------- From: PRO826 [at] aol.com Subject: Colombia/unions 3.19 6pm March 19, 6pm Minneapolis Central Labor Union Council 312 Central Ave., Mpls 55414 Topic: Union Worker Struggles in Colombia - a discussion of the struggle for trade union organizers and the impacts of economic trade in Colombia Speakers: Edgar Paez (National Food Industry Workers Union) in Colombia, Dan Kovalik (Associate General Counsel of the United Steelworkers and attorney for human rights cases), Gerardo Cajamarca (United Steelworkers; Associate Member Program) FFI: Alicia Ranney, 612-578-8266, _aranney [at] citizenstrade.org_ (mailto:aranney [at] citizenstrade.org) --------15 of 18-------- From: "wamm [at] mtn.org" <wamm [at] mtn.org> Subject: Winter soldiers 3.19 6:30pm Public Talk: Winter Soldiers of Today: Wes Davies and Brandon Day, Iraq Veterans Against the War and Sami Rasouli, Muslim Peacemaker Teams, just returned from Iraq, speak on the 5th Anniversary of the War and Occupation March 19, 2008, the Fifth Anniversary of the Iraq War, 6:30 P.M. Macalester Plymouth United Church 1658 Lincoln Ave., St. Paul Americans became familiar with the Testimony of Winter Soldiers from the Vietnam era when a young John Kerry spoke before congress about the realities on the ground in that war. This March 13-16, military men and women, who served in Iraq and Afghanistan, gathered in Washington, D.C. and gave their own Winter Soldier accounts of their experiences in Iraq and Afghanistan--though not before congress. The four-day event brought together veterans from across the country to testify about their experiences in Iraq and Afghanistan - and present video and photographic evidence. In addition, panels of scholars, veterans, journalists, and other specialists gave context to the testimony. On Wednesday, Wes Davies and Brandon Day, Iraq Veterans Against the War, will speak at Macalester Plymouth United church, 1658 Lincoln Ave., St. Paul, Minnesota. They will speak after a "Not One More Death! Not One More Dollar!" vigil on the Lake Street/Marshall Ave. Bridge spanning the Mississippi River between Minneapolis and St. Paul; participants at the vigil demand that troops be brought home now to end the war and occupation of Iraq. Wes Davies and Brandon Day will be joined by Sami Rasouli, long-time resident of both Minneapolis and for three years now: Najaf, Iraq. He will talk about "the surge" and ongoing occupation, his work for peace and national reconciliation, and the projects of the Muslim Peacemaker Teams in Iraq, which are patterned after the Christian Peacemaker Teams. He will also share stories of Iraqi people and give a first-hand account of conditions in Iraq today. Sponsored by Women Against Military Madness and Twin Cities Peace Campaign-Focus Iraq --------16 of 18-------- From: "wamm [at] mtn.org" <wamm [at] mtn.org> Subject: S StPaul vigil 3.19 7pm South St. Paul Vigil for Peace Wednesday, March 19, 7:00 p.m. 5th Avenue Bridge over Highway 494, South St. Paul. Vigil for peace on the 5th anniversary of the Iraq war. --------17 of 18-------- Taking Down Big Pharma Beyond Progressive Malpractice By RONNIE CUMMINS CounterPunch March 17, 2008 Progressive Malpractice [noun] ignoring the fundamental economic and political roots of a crisis; taking a single-issue, band-aid approach in hopes of gaining mainstream support. Libertarian Narcissism [noun] promoting individual solutions for collective problems; believing that market pressure alone can bring out-of-control corporations under control; ignoring the plight of the poor; pretending major problems can be solved without serious grassroots organizing and government reform. Welcome to Sicko Nation: Swimming in a toxic soup of 100,000 synthetic chemicals - carcinogens, neurotoxins, hormone disruptors, immune suppressors, excitotoxins ... Worn down by corporate junk food, tainted consumer products, air and water pollution, incessant advertising, infectious disease, synthetic drugs, cigarette smoke, and alcohol. Zapped 24/7 with electromagnetic radiation. Stressed out by poverty and economic insecurity, fear of crime, rampant consumerism, and a murderous work pace. A growing corps of Americans is chronically sick and dispirited. Aiding and abetting this massive assault, mainstream medical practitioners, the corporate media, and elected public officials ignore or cover-up the toxic roots of Sicko Nation. Money-grubbing politicians offer band-aid solutions, and then proceed to collect their rewards in the form of campaign contributions from the pharmaceutical industry and HMOs (Health Maintenance Organizations). Big Pharma spends more on lobbying - $855 million between 1998 and 2006 - than any other industry in the United States, according to the Center for Public Integrity. In addition Big Pharma feeds the insatiable appetite of the mainstream media, spending more than $70 billion dollars a year on advertising. Last but not least, U.S. doctors make more money than any other medical practitioners in the world, though they typically pay a steep price in terms of a 70-hour workweek, skyrocketing malpractice insurance, and indentured servitude to HMOs and giant hospitals. The Emperor of ill health has no clothes, but very few of our so-called leaders are talking seriously about what to do about it. American consumers and employers will spend over two trillion dollars this year on health insurance, pharmaceutical drugs, and medical bills, yet we will remain - mentally and physically - among the unhealthiest people on Earth. Forty-eight percent of U.S. men and 38% of women can now look forward to getting cancer. Eight percent of our children suffer from serious food allergies, 17% are diagnosed with learning or behavior disabilities, and a third of low-income preschool kids are already overweight or obese. Heart disease, diabetes, mental illness, cancer, and obesity are spiraling out-of-control among all sectors of the population. The fundamental causes of most of our chronic health problems are not genetic or inherited, but rather derive from couch potato/commuter lifestyles; over consumption of highly processed, high-cholesterol, nutritionally deficient, and contaminated industrialized foods; and an increasingly polluted, stressful, and toxic environment. These, of course, are problems that even the most expensive prescription drugs and high-tech medical procedures cannot cure. Unfortunately the worst is yet to come. Within eight years, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation, America's health care costs will soar to $4.1 trillion annually, bankrupting Medicare and millions of American families and businesses. Unless we quickly change our priorities from "maintaining" our Sicko Nation to universally preventing disease and promoting overall wellness - including cleaning up our food supply and environment - America's health crisis will become terminal. This means we must put an end to tunnel vision, single-issue health care politics and roll up our sleeves to take on the real culprits: out-of-control corporations, politicians, and technology. With millions of Americans mentally or physically debilitated, permanently hooked on the world's most expensive prescription drugs, Big Pharma, HMOs, and insurance tycoons rake in billions. According to Dr. Marcia Angell, former editor in chief of the New England Journal of Medicine, in 2002, "The combined profits for the ten drug companies in the Fortune 500 ($35.9 billion) were more than the profits for all the other 490 businesses put together ($33.7 billion) ... Over the past two decades the pharmaceutical industry has [become] a marketing machine to sell drugs of dubious benefit, [using] its wealth and power to co-opt every institution that might stand in its way, including the US Congress, the FDA, academic medical centers, and the medical profession itself." To put it bluntly we must put the "fear of the grassroots" into the minds of Congress and the nation's 172,000 elected public officials. But we will only be able to accomplish this if can move beyond progressive malpractice and libertarian narcissism. The critics of corporate health care and Big Pharma must stop quibbling, close ranks, and mobilize a massive united front of the progressive single-payer health care movement, representing the 100 million Americans with no or inadequate health insurance; reinforced by an army of radicals and libertarians, the 50 million alternative heath consumers who have rejected Big Pharma's trillion-dollar drug and heath maintenance scam altogether. Unless we bring together liberals, radicals, and libertarians, and mobilize this new majority, we will fail. The toxic side effects of Sicko Nation are poisoning the body politic. With much of the population fixated on their health and psychological problems, worried about losing their jobs or their health coverage, doped up on prescription drugs or alcohol, and, for many, compensating for their alienating jobs with rampant consumerism, politicians and corporations run amuck. National and global mega-crises - climate change, peak oil, and endless war - steadily grow worse. Outgunned and out-maneuvered, public interest organizations have defensively barricaded themselves in their respective single-issue silos - competing rather than cooperating, seldom if ever making the crucial links between food, environment, lifestyle, work, tax policy, military spending, and health. Intimidated and/or bought off by Big Pharma and the medical industrial complex, few of the nation's elected public officials - and none of the major Presidential candidates - dare talk about the obvious solution to our national health crisis: universal health care with a preventive and holistic focus. We need universal, publicly funded health care because millions of sick and disadvantaged Americans are suffering and dying. We need universal health care because Big Pharma, HMOs, and insurance companies are gouging consumers for two trillion dollars a year, profitably "maintaining" their illnesses, rather than curing them, steadily moving the nation along a trajectory that, combined with out-of-control military spending and corporate tax evasion, will eventually bankrupt the economy. In every industrialized country in the world, except for the United States, medical care is considered a basic human right, alongside food and shelter, which a civilized society must provide for all. Of course it's very difficult for a corporate-indentured government like the U.S. to afford universal health care, if big pharmaceutical companies and HMOs are allowed to jack up their profit margins at will, while the rich and the corporations are allowed to evade taxes. Health care reform in the U.S. must be coupled with price controls on drugs and medical costs, as well as tax reform, whereby the corporations and the wealthy are forced to pay their fair share of federal taxes. In the U.S. corporations paid almost 40% of all federal taxes in 1943. Now they pay less than 10%. In 1960, millionaires were taxed at the rate of 90%. Now the top rate for millionaires and billionaires is 35%. Putting an end to this institutionalized tax evasion is a prerequisite for being able to afford publicly funded universal health care - without raising taxes for the middle class and the poor. The Cure: Disease Prevention & Complimentary Medicine But government funded universal health care (exemplified by John Conyers' currently stalled bill in the House, HR 676 ("Non-Profit Medicare for All") is not enough. We need non-profit universal health care that promotes wellness and prevents people from getting sick - before they end up in the hospital or become permanently addicted to expensive prescription drugs with dangerous side effects. Simply giving everyone access to Big Pharma's overpriced drugs, and corporate hospitals' profit-at-any-cost tests and treatment, will result in little more than soaring health care costs, with uninsured and insured alike remaining sick or becoming even sicker. To cure Sicko Nation and revitalize the body politic, we will need to build up a comprehensive not-for-profit public health system that not only guarantees everyone access to health care, but makes the life or death connections between food, diet, and health; exercise and health; exposure to toxics and health; stress reduction and health; and poverty and health. As fifty million organic consumers and alternative health consumers can attest, complimentary and preventive medicine, utilizing natural herbs, minerals, food based supplements, organic whole foods, lifestyle changes, and holistic healing practices is safe, affordable and effective. Preventive health care, natural medicine, and proper nutrition have been linked to a broad range of health and social benefits, including disease reduction, increased academic performance, and lower health care costs. Unfortunately, a large percentage of the U.S. population lacks access to health care, complimentary medicine, and healthy foods. The only solution to this unacceptable situation is to shift to a single-payer, publicly financed, prevention-based, universal health care system. The $350 billion in savings that will occur by eliminating the profit motive and moving to a single-payer system will allow us to insure and promote the health and wellness of our entire population. In addition, scientific evidence is mounting that Americans' daily exposure to 100,000 different synthetic chemicals (less than 10% of which have ever been safety tested) in our food, water, medicines, body care products, cosmetics, toys, home environments, etc. are undermining our health and fueling an epidemic of debilitating and deadly diseases including cancer, heart disease, asthma, allergies, obesity, and chemical sensitivities. Of course we still need conventional medicine and practitioners: hospitals, diagnostic tests, surgeons, and specialists, as well as preventive and holistic healers. I am a vocal advocate for organic food and integrative medicine, but if I suffer a heart attack, break my leg, or get shot in an anti-war demonstration, I want to be taken to a well-equipped and staffed hospital, not to a health food store or my local acupuncturist. But after my hospital treatment I don't want to become a prescription drug junky or be driven into bankruptcy court by a $100,000+ hospital bill. To restore public health and bring Big Pharma to heel will require, as a minimum first step, that we organize a broad united front between the nation's 100 million supporters of single-payer health insurance (many of whom have an outdated or conservative belief system regarding the relative effectiveness of conventional versus alternative medicine), and the more radical, often libertarian, 50 million alternative health consumers and practitioners - who typically hate Big Pharma and the entire medical industrial complex with a passion. This united front will require us to move beyond current "progressive malpractice," whereby single-payer health care activists work in isolation from alternative health consumers, often dismissing complimentary medicine and its advocates as "snake oil salesmen." Similarly "libertarian narcissism" is just as counter-productive: alternative health enthusiasts who basically say "to hell with all government programs" and "socialized medicine," in effect ignoring the plight of 50 million poor and low-income Americans who have little or no access to healthy food, nutrition and health information, or access to quality health care. Beyond uniting liberal, radical, and libertarian critics of Big Pharma and the medical industrial complex, the entire activist rainbow, including environmentalists, trade unionists, tax reformers, peace activists, and other progressives will have work hand in hand to treat and cure our profoundly sick nation. Forty-seven million Americans currently have no health insurance, while 50 million more of us are woefully underinsured. Unfortunately, being able to afford conventional health insurance yourself or getting it through your employer may not help you very much, since Big Pharma and profit-obsessed HMOs and hospitals are focused mainly on selling you overpriced (often hazardous) prescription drugs ($300 billion a year), running expensive tests, and basically keeping you on permanent health maintenance, rather than preventing and/or curing our most common ailments such as cancer, hypertension, heart disease, lung problems, diabetes, obesity, stroke, and mental illness. Rampant medical malpractice and the failure of conventional medicine to address our serious ailments is the primary reason that 50 million alternative health consumers are taking matters into their own hands and paying $30 billion dollars a year out of their own pockets for complimentary medical supplements and practitioners. Even worse than just expensively maintaining - rather than curing - chronic illnesses, the collateral damage of Big Pharma's business as usual can only be described as catastrophic. As an AMA (American Medical Association) publication admitted a decade ago, drug related "problems" kill ... 198,815 people, put 8.8 million in hospitals, and account for up to 28% of hospital admissions." Over the past decade this carnage has increased. Newsweek magazine, among others, has reported that side effects from prescription drugs are now the fourth leading cause of death in the U.S. As medical analyst Gary Null warns: "A definitive review and close reading of medical peer-review journals, and government health statistics shows that ... the number of people having in-hospital, adverse drug reactions (ADR) to prescribed medicine is 2.2 million ... the number of unnecessary antibiotics prescribed annually for viral infections is 20 million ... The number of unnecessary medical and surgical procedures performed annually is 7.5 million. The number of people exposed to unnecessary hospitalization annually is 8.9 million. The problem is clear. The solution is obvious. The trillion-dollar life or death question is whether we can overcome our sectarian divisions and mobilize the grassroots power of the 150 million Americans who are sick and tired of living in a Sicko Nation. Can we heal the perennial split between proponents of conventional medicine and the alternative health consumer movement? Can progressives and libertarians reach out to the economically disadvantaged and stressed-out majority to create a massive grassroots pressure that will literally force the politicians to "do the right thing?" The time for action is now. To begin the long overdue process of "pressing the politicians" please join thousands of other consumers and taxpayers and go to www.grassrootsnetroots.org where you can click a button to send a comprehensive Universal Health Care Candidate Survey to your state and federal elected public officials and candidates running for office in 2008. Once you've "pressed the politicians," an on-line organizer from the Grassroots Netroots Alliance will contact you. Ronnie Cummins is director of the Organic Consumers Alliance. He can be reached at: ronnie [at] organicconsumers.org --------18 of 18-------- Courtesy of Larry Olds From the CD program notes: (it is better as a song than as poetry) All Because I voted For Ralph Nader Mark Levy / sung by Tom Neilson Oh come all ye citizens and hear my tale of woe All because I voted for Ralph Nader How I ruined the country with my choice 5 years ago All because I voted for Ralph Nader In the year 2000, the election was a loss The votes were not counted & Bush became the boss. & all my liberal friends say I am the cause. All because I voted for Ralph Nader Yes, gov Jeb Bush delivered his state All because I voted for Ralph Nader The votes were never counted in FL to date All because I voted for Ralph Nader. Blacks could not vote because they were criminalized Jews marked Buchanan on those dreaded butterflies And the Supreme Court ruled to cover all the lies All because I voted for Ralph Nader The twin towers fell & 3000 died All because I voted for Ralph Nader The terrorists came & there was no place to hide. All because I voted for Ralph Nader The Democrats voted to bomb Afghanistan To cut back freedoms once enjoyed across the land The party of Jefferson afraid to take a stand All because I voted for Ralph Nader W set his sites on Saddam in Iraq All because I voted for Ralph Nader The Democrats gave the ok to attack All because I voted for Ralph Nader The president said he'd wage eternal war And the Democrats nodded from the senate floor And all the while the money dried up for the poor. All because I voted for Ralph Nader Now color-coded warnings invade our every thought All because I voted for Ralph Nader Duct tape and plastic are all that we've got All because I voted for Ralph Nader The fires will rage throughout the middle east The terrorist threat will continue to increase & war will go on there never will be peace. All because I voted for Ralph Nader ---- I, ed, have added two verses: My bunions got bigger and hurt like hell All because I voted for Ralph Nader My dog humps my leg and leaves a bad smell All because I voted for Ralph Nader Beautiful women won't join me in bed My bank account is always in the red People laugh at the wise things I have said All because I voted for Ralph Nader --- Would YOU care to add more? ------------------------------------------------------------------------------ - David Shove shove001 [at] tc.umn.edu rhymes with clove Progressive Calendar over 2225 subscribers as of 12.19.02 please send all messages in plain text no attachments To GO DIRECTLY to an item, eg --------8 of x-------- do a find on --8 impeach bush & cheney impeach bush & cheney impeach bush & cheney impeach bush & cheney
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