|Progressive Calendar 04.24.09||<– Date –> <– Thread –>|
|From: David Shove (shove001tc.umn.edu)|
|Date: Fri, 24 Apr 2009 04:25:29 -0700 (PDT)|
P R O G R E S S I V E C A L E N D A R 04.24.09 new posts for 4.24-26 1. Mpls CC/evictions 4.24 9:15am 2. Mpls march permit 4.24 9:30am 3. Reworking the U 4.24-26 times? 4. Moyers/Wall St 4.24 9pm 5. Iraq 4.25 12noon 6. Water resources 4.25 1pm 7. Single payer/950AM 4.26 3pm 8. Dave Lindorff - Are members of Congress being blackmailed? 9. Helen Redmond - Selling out single-payer 10. ed - Capital bumperstickers --------1 of 10-------- Date: Thu, 23 Apr 2009 23:08:10 -0500 From: Steff Yorek <yosteff [at] gmail.com> Subject: Mpls CC/evictions 4.24 9:15am For Immediate Release: Minneapolis City Council to vote on moratorium on foreclosures and evictions For immediate release 4-23-2009 Minneapolis City Council to vote on moratorium on foreclosures and evictions On Friday, April 24, 9:30 a.m., Room 317 of City Hall, the Minneapolis City Council will take action on a moratorium on foreclosures and evictions. The language is modeled in part after the People's Bailout Act of 2009, written by the MN Coalition for a Peoples Bailout. It will be brought forward by Councilperson Elizabeth Glidden, both as an amendment to Minneapolis's 2009 Legislative Agenda and as "priority issues" for the City Council. Spokespeople from the MN Coalition for a Peoples Bailout will be available for the media outside the council chamber at 9:15 a.m. and after the hearing. The People's Bailout Act housing bill (HF-2233) calls for a 1 to 2 moratorium on foreclosures. It also calls for letting tenants keep their leases when their building is foreclosed upon. The Minneapolis City Council's consideration of this language is critical in our battle. Here are just a few reasons why a moratorium is needed now: *Save Our Homes* - We keep hearing about programs in the pipeline to help people, BUT they aren't taking effect yet. We NEED a 1-year moratorium so people and banks have time to get together to work out a deal. *Protect Innocent Renters* - Renters need the option of keeping their existing leases. Many renters don't even know their landlords are getting foreclosed on; they have been paying rent, assuming it was going to the mortgage. There are also cases where "landlords" take the security deposit and disappear! Let renters keep the leases. *Save Neighborhoods, the Tax Base, Housing Stock & Investments* - When houses (or apartments) go empty, everyone suffers. Housing values go down and there are health and safety issues. Empty houses turn into trashed houses. Lower property values mean less $ for local governments. Trashed houses mean less money when the banks try to re-sell the house. Keep people housed, keep properties maintained, and even keep some money going to the lender. At the capitol, powerful Democrats, like the banker and realtor Sen. James Metzen, have so far stopped the legislative progress of the bill. But the MN Coalition for a Peoples Bailout will use every means necessary to get it passed this year. We expect that the Minneapolis City Council will agree. Contacts: Linden Gawboy 612-296-5649, Deb Konechne 612-296-6998, Mick Kelly 612-715-3280 --------2 of 10-------- Date: Thu, 23 Apr 2009 14:27:51 -0700 (PDT) From: Todd Heintz <proud2liveinjordan [at] yahoo.com> Subject: Mpls march permit 4.24 9:30am CALL-IN TODAY: Permits Denied for Immigrant Rights March The MN Immigrant Rights Action Coalition and the May 1st Coalition are planning the 4th Annual March for Immigrant Rights on May 1st, 2009. We have solicited permits for a march down Lake St. and a rally on Nicollett Ave, and they have both been denied. Just as we did two years ago, we are asking the Minneapolis City Council to pass a resolution to support our march on Lake St. PLEASE CALL today to let your city council member, the mayor and the chief of police that we have right to march for immigrant rights on International Workers Day. Below you will find the information to call or email to show your support. Also, we are asking all those who can to PLEASE ATTEND the City Council Meeting this Friday (TOMORROW) at 9:30am at City Hall room 317, 350 S 5th St in Downtown Minneapolis, and join us for a PRESS CONFERENCE in front of City Hall at 10:30am after the meeting. The press release is attached. Thank you for your time! When you call your city council members, please remind them: - We greatly appreciate their support in the past and are looking forward to their continued support as we work toward making Minneapolis a model of free speech and democracy. - It is not only in the interests of our freedom of speech to grant a permit, but also in the interest of our safety. The safety of all the marchers are at risk if the city refuses to grant a permit. - It is in the interest of the city to demonstrate its concern for the protection and safety of its most vulnerable residents. Immigrants and their allies in Minneapolis have a right to demand equality and justice, and the city has the responsibility to give them the space for it. Mayor RT Rybak: (612) 673-2100 - rt [at] minneapolis.org Mpls Chief of Police Tim Dolan: (612) 673-3787 - police [at] ci.minneapolis.mn.us Minneapolis City Council Members: 1 Paul Ostrow · (612) 673-2201 paul.ostrow [at] ci.minneapolis.mn.us 2 Cam Gordon · (612) 673-2202 cam.gordon [at] ci.minneapolis.mn.us 3 Diane Hofstede · (612) 673-2203 diane.hofstede [at] ci.minneapolis.mn.us 4 Barbara Johnson · (612) 673-2204 barbara.johnson [at] ci.minneapolis.mn.us 5 Don Samuels · (612) 673-2205 don.samuels [at] ci.minneapolis.mn.us 6 Robert Lilligren · (612) 673-2206 robert.lilligren [at] ci.minneapolis.mn.us 7 Lisa Goodman · (612) 673-2207 http://www.ci.minneapolis.mn.us/contact/email-form-goodman.asp 8 Elizabeth Glidden · (612) 673-2208 http://www.ci.minneapolis.mn.us/contact/email-form-glidden.asp 9 Gary Schiff · (612) 673-2209 http://www.ci.minneapolis.mn.us/contact/email-form-schiff.asp 10 Ralph Remington · (612) 673-2210 ralph.remington [at] ci.minneapolis.mn.us 11 Scott Benson · (612) 673-2211 scott.benson [at] ci.minneapolis.mn.us 12 Sandy Colvin Roy · (612) 673-2212 http://www.ci.minneapolis.mn.us/contact/email-form-roy.asp 13 Betsy Hodges · (612) 673-2213 http://www.ci.minneapolis.mn.us/contact/email-form-hodges.asp Todd Heintz, Jordan Neighborhood --------3 of 10-------- Date: Thu, 23 Apr 2009 16:49:51 -0500 From: Women Against Military Madness <wamm [at] mtn.org> Subject: Reworking the U 4.24-26 times? Conference: "Reworking the University: Visions, Strategies, Demands" April 24 to 26 University of Minnesota, Nolte Hall, Room 140, 315 Pillsbury Drive Southeast, Minneapolis (Saturday evening: Nicholson Hall, Room 155, 216 Pillsbury Drive Southeast, Minneapolis). The current "financial meltdown" has exacerbated the ongoing crises within the university, resulting in even greater budget cuts, tuition hikes, hiring freezes, layoffs, and institutional reorganizations. This conference creates a space for collectively re-evaluating the university-in-crisis and for thinking about how to turn the crisis into an opportunity to produce political alternatives. Free and open to all. Sponsored by: the Committee on Revolutionizing AcaDemia (ComRAD). Endorsed by: WAMM. FFI: Visit www.reworkingtheu.org or email comradmn [at] gmail.com . --------4 of 10-------- Date: Thu, 23 Apr 2009 17:21:39 -0500 From: t r u t h o u t <messenger [at] truthout.org> Subject: Moyers/Wall St 4.24 9pm Bill Moyers Journal | Investigating Wall Street? truthout.org/042309U Bill Moyers Journal: "As the demand grows for a new Pecora commission, the 1930's investigation into the causes and effects of the Great Depression, Bill Moyers speaks with economist Simon Johnson and Ferdinand Pecora biographer and legal scholar Michael Perino." --------5 of 10-------- Date: Thu, 23 Apr 2009 12:59:18 -0500 From: "Murphy, Cathy" <CMurphy [at] analysts.com> Subject: Iraq 4.25 12noon Luncheon with Beth Pyles Saturday, April 25, noon St Luke Presbyterian Church 3121 Groveland School Road Minnetonka, MN Christian Peacemaker Team member and Presbyterian Pastor Beth Pyles will share her experiences in Iraq with us on Saturday, Apr 25, at St Luke. Please bring a sandwich or salad "ingredient." We will provide bread, condiments and beverages. All are welcome, and we hope to see you there. Questions: Cathy Murphy, 612.799.0595 --------6 of 10-------- From: Erin Parrish <erin [at] mnwomen.org> Subject: Water resources 4.25 1pm April 25 - 26: Women's Environmental Institute at Amador Hill presents speaker Paul Wotzka, WEI Scholar Under Fire will speak April 25 at the Taylor's Falls Memorial Community Center, 312 Government Street at 1 PM and on April 26 at the North Branch Area Library Community Room, 6355 379th Street, North Branch at 6 PM. Free coffee and pie will be served at both lectures "Atrazine, Nitrates, and Corn-Based Ethanol -- Implications for Minnesota's Water Resources." --------7 of 10-------- Date: Thu, 23 Apr 2009 23:30:44 -0400 (EDT) From: "Of the People" <info [at] jamesmayer.org> Subject: Single payer/950AM 4.26 3pm James Mayer Of the People with Host James Mayer Every Sunday Afternoon 3-4 p.m. AM950 KTNF Rebellion in the Ranks - What One Doctor Did to Make His Voice Heard and What is Happening at the National Level in the Move Toward Health Care "Reform". April 26, 2009 Jess G. Fiedorowicz, M.D., a psychiatrist and Associate Professor at the University of Iowa College of Medicine, stirred things up recently at the Iowa Regional Council on Health Reform when he called for Universal Single Payer Health Care in spite of attempts to shut down discussion about the subject. He and host James Mayer will discuss the that event and its ramifications as well as how and why we need to join the grownswell for real Universal Single Payer Health Care. Kip Sullivan Joining them will be Kip Sullivan who sits on the steering committee of the Minnesota Universal Health Care Coalition. He is the author of "The Health Care Mess: How we got into it and how we'll get out of it." Sullivan will discuss recent actions at the national level in the move toward health care "reform" and why it is so important that we push our elected representatives to enact Universal Single Payer Health Care instead of phony reforms. --------8 of 10-------- Harman and the NSA Wiretaps Are Members of Congress Being Blackmailed? By DAVE LINDORFF April 23, 2009 CounterPunch For some time now, many Americans have wondered how Congress, the elected body that the nation.s Founding Fathers saw as the bulwark of liberty, could have been so thoroughly unwilling to, or incapable of challenging the dictatorial power-grabs and the eight-year Constitution wrecking campaign of the Bush/Cheney administration. There has been speculation on both the far left and the far right, and even among some in the apolitical, cynical middle of the political spectrum, that somehow the Bush/Cheney administration must have been blackmailing at least the key members of the Congressional leadership, most likely through the use of electronic monitoring by the National Security Agency (NSA). I'll admit that (even though we know J Edgar Hoover did keep a dirt file on members of Congress to help him support his budget allocation each year) I always considered the idea of White House blackmail a bit far out. But now suddenly there is at least some evidence that such seemingly wild speculation may not have been off the mark, with reports that the NSA was indeed monitoring Rep. Jane Harman (D-CA), and that the Bush Administration used the evidence it had obtained of her improper conversations with and promises to assist agents of the Israeli government and its lobby here in the US, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), to blackmail her into supporting the NSA's warrantless spying program - the very kind of spying that led to her being caught on tape plotting with an agent of a foreign power. At the time of the taping of Harman's incriminating phone conversations, the administration was trying desperately (and ultimately successfully) to get the New York Times to hold off on publishing a shocking investigative report by journalist James Risen about a massive campaign of warrantless tapping of Americans' phone and internet communications. According to a report by Jeff Stein, published in the latest issue of Congressional Quarterly, the NSA in 2006 recorded Rep. Harman negotiating with an alleged Israeli agent about helping Israel win a reduction in the espionage charges filed by the US in 2005 against two members of the AIPAC lobby accused of providing US intelligence information to the Israeli government (the case against AIPAC's Stephen Rosen and Keith Weissman is still waiting to go to trial). According to the transcript, a copy of which was obtained by CQ, the Israeli agent offered to have AIPAC lobby, and more specifically to have a it arrange for a wealthy Jewish pro-Israel donor in California donate money to Rep. Nancy Pelosi, in order to get her, once she became House Speaker, to name Harman as chair of the House Intelligence Committee. At the end of the phone conversation, Rep. Harman, who offered to help, was heard to say, "This conversation doesn't exist". According to reports in CQ and in the New York Times, which ran a story on the scandal as its lead news item on Tuesday, then Attorney General Alberto Gonzales subsequently intervened with the FBI to prevent any prosecution of Harman, a key member of Congress on whom the administration was relying to help it persuade the Times to withhold its NSA wiretapping expos until after the 2006 election. In the event, Rep. Harman did later make calls to a Times editor, the paper did hold its story until after the election, and Harman later was a leading backer of the administration's controversial (and illegal) NSA spying program. (Harman never did get the chair of the Intel Committee, though she did make a run at it. It is possible that the reason she didn't get the position was that, as Pelosi now admits, she was informed early on by the NSA of the tap it had done on Harman.) There are several serious issues here. One is the extraordinary glimpse it offers into the extent to which Israel has penetrated the centers of power in Washington. It is illegal for foreign governments to directly lobby and to offer to arrange financial contributions for members of the US government, but here, clearly, Israeli agents were doing just that. The role of AIPAC as a front for the Israeli government in Washington, as exposed here, is simply stomach-turning, and should make it a toxic organization to politicians. Instead, they flock enmasse to its annual meetings, as President Obama did almost immediately upon winning the November election, and a large proportion of both houses from both parties happily accept its campaign largesse. A second, even bigger, issue is the NSA's spying activities themselves. According to CQ, the particular wiretap that caught Rep. Harman inflagrante with an Israeli agent was a court-approved tap - part of an investigation into Israeli government spying activities. But even if this is true - and at this point, we're relying on what the government is telling us about it - it shows how dangerous the broader unwarranted monitoring program of the NSA has been, and remains. Back in 1978, Congress passed the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) in direct response to the disclosure during the Watergate hearings and subsequent investigations that the Nixon Administration had been using the NSA to conduct illegal monitoring of the communications of anti-war activists, and of members of Congress. To prevent such police-state outrages in the future, Congress passed the FISA legislation, establishing a secret court staffed by a panel of top-security-cleared federal judges, whose sole responsibility was to consider and grant requests from the NSA for warrants to conduct secret electronic surveillance within the US or involving American citizens abroad. President Bush used the pretext of the 9-11 attacks to secretly order the NSA to begin a massive compaign of surveillance without going through the FISA Court for warrants, even secretly soliciting the cooperation of the nation's several telecom companies in splicing in routers at their switching hubs to make it possible to monitor all conversations moving across the wires and the internet. It seemed to some observers, myself included, that the only reason the administration could have had for bypassing the FISA court (which over 30 years of operation has been incredibly accommodating of government spying requests) was that it was planning to engage in spying that would outrage the public and the Congress and even the FISA judges. It also seemed likely, given the Bush/Cheney administration's public stance that everyone was either "with us or against us," and that critics of the administration's "War on Terror" or of its plans to invade Iraq, were "unpatriotic" or "soft on terror," that congressional opponents of the administration would be obvious - and indeed irresistible - targets of that surveillance. Now that we have seen proof that the prior administration was not above using its NSA-acquired knowledge to pressure a member of Congress, it becomes absolutely essential that Congress and the Justice Department investigate to see whether other members of Congress were also victims of agency spying, and whether others besides Rep. Harman were similarly extorted or otherwise compromised. The American public can, at this point, have zero confidence in the integrity of the Congress or of their own representatives, knowing that politicians and government officials may be acting not in the public interest but rather under duress in the interest of those who control the National Security Agency. We can have zero confidence either in the integrity of the president, who likewise may well have been compromised by NSA surveillance conducted on him before he became president. The only possible position for the public to adopt as of today is to be suspicious of any politician who opposes a full and public investigation into the NSA's seven-year-long campaign of sweeping, warrantless electronic eavesdropping, since opposition to such an investigation, in the wake of the Harman episode, could well be an indication that the political figure in question is afraid she or he has been monitored, or worse, that she or he has been threatened by those who have the records. Every citizen concerned about the fate of American democracy should demand that his or her senators and representative promptly call for such a public probe. Even if the administration isn't blackmailing individual members of Congress, given that many of them are sure to have ethical, legal or moral skeletons in their closets that they would not want revealed, just knowing that the NSA has been and could be monitoring their communications, and that the White House hasn't been above using that information against a member, could make them pliant and cowardly. It is no longer a wild idea at all to imagine that our Congress has been reduced to the status of a Potemkin legislature because of real or imagined spying by the NSA. Dave Lindorff is a Philadelphia-based journalist and columnist. His latest book is "The Case for Impeachment" (St. Martin's Press, 2006 and now available in paperback). He can be reached at dlindorff [at] mindspring.com --------9 of 10-------- The Public Option Con Selling Out Single-Payer By HELEN REDMOND CounterPunch April 23, 2009 "As we roll out new products we will continue to price businesses for appropriate margins. We will not sacrifice profitability for membership". - Angela Braly, Wellpoint CEO At the Health Care for America Now (HCAN) and Citizen Action Illinois sponsored rally in Chicago last weekend, single-payer advocates confronted HCAN leadership and Democratic Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky (D-Illinois) who instead of working to pass HR 676, John Conyers single-payer bill titled the United States National Health Insurance Act, are supporting the so called "public option". What the public option plan is, no one can exactly say. There are no concrete proposals spelling out what the plan would include, who could join it, how much it would cost, or how it would be funded. But the details don't matter, they advocated for it anyway. In a heated exchange with Schakowsky before the rally, she argued HR 676 (she is a cosponsor of the bill, yes that's right) has no chance of passing and something has to be passed this year. She lied and said there isn't enough support for single-payer, but there is for a public option. I and other activists challenged Schakowsky on every assertion and demanded she fight to pass HR 676. We said the insurance industry is going to fight just as hard against a public option as it will single-payer so let's have a smackdown for single-payer. We argued the passage of HR 676 would guarantee an end to the crisis and finally make health care a human right that could never be taken away. She got pissed and complained loudly to her staff as she walked into the building, "Can you believe she is lecturing me?" I yelled after her, "I'm just expressing my opinion, I'm your constituency". The rally was a slick "Sell out single-payer and confuse em' show" from start to finish, replete with retro 70's song Ain't no Stoppin' Us Now blasting into the auditorium. HCAN staffers, state representatives, Tom Balanoff - President of SEIU Local 1, small business owners, patients, doctors and medical students all took the stage, outlined different aspects of the crisis, and rightfully denounced the insurance and pharmaceutical companies. Their solution: the creation of a public plan to compete against the private insurance industry they despise. Speaker after speaker projected a wish list of health care reforms onto the nonexistent public option plan: benefits must be comprehensive, coverage must be affordable, no denial of care, and equal access to quality care. Who could disagree if a plan like that could actually be enacted? The problem is the United States will never, ever get a plan like that while the private insurance industry is still breathing. HCAN and liberal Democrats have to engage in this "magical thinking" in order to convince a skeptical public that a public option embedded in a for-profit system can work. Only a single-payer system, one that drives a stake through the heart of the insatiably greedy insurance corporations once and for all, can deliver on those promises. A little history is in order. The American health insurance system is based on the avoidance of the elderly and sick so insurers didn't care much when Medicare was created: seniors have complex and costly health care needs that cut into profit margins. Let the government and taxpayers foot the bill for old people. Plus, people aren't eligible for Medicare until they turn 65 so the vampires would have decades of opportunity to bleed Americans into medical bankruptcy. A similar dynamic was at work with Medicaid: poor people tend to have chronic health problems and that cuts into profit margins. Let the government and the taxpayers take care of them, but the minute they are healthy enough to work, kick 'em out of the program and into the clutches of the vampires or the ranks of the uninsured. Whose left? Everybody in between. That's what is driving the insurance industry and Karen Ignagni, the Chief Evil Officer (CEO) of America's Health Insurance Plans (AHIP), into a frenzy. They fear a public plan will snatch away "their" market: the millions of people who don't fall into the above categories of old and poor, especially the young and the healthy. It's the profits, stupid! Ignagni and the industry are whining that if a new government insurance program is created to compete with them, like Medicare, that's unfair competition and they'd be driven out of business. Ohhh, don't you feel sorry for Ignagni and all the other millionaire CEOs? They think a government health plan would be unfair to them. But they're exaggerating the effects a public plan would have on their pursuit of profit. Just look at how they have sunk fangs into Medicare. Doctors Himmelstein and Woolhandler from Physicians for a National Health Program (PNHP) explain: "A quarter century of experience with public/private competition in the Medicare program demonstrates that the private plans will not allow a level playing field. Despite strict regulation, private insurers have successfully cherry picked healthier seniors, and have exploited regional health spending differences to their advantage. They have progressively undermined the public plan - which started as single-payer for seniors and now has become a funding mechanism for HMOs - and a place to dump the unprofitably ill. A public plan option doesn't lead toward single-payer, but toward the segregation of patients, with profitable ones in private plans and unprofitable ones in the public one". Private Medicare Advantage plans cost the government 13 percent more per beneficiary on average in 2008, and overhead for private plans is also much higher, at 13 percent, compared to 2-3 percent in traditional Medicare. Of the 45 million Medicare recipients, 23 percent are in private plans. Most Americans aren't aware of the extent of privatization of Medicare. What is the lesson HCAN draws from the privatization of Medicare? On their website an article is posted titled, Will Government Give Public Health Insurance an Unfair Advantage? Experience Tells Us No. Experience shows the government has given an unfair advantage to private insurers when it comes to the Medicare program, which HCAN acknowledges. In twisted logic that is hard to follow, HCAN thinks that's a good thing, it's proof the government won't lower reimbursement rates or impose cost controls on private insurers. Now HCAN is all about reassuring the insurance industry they claim to loathe so much they only want a public plan to compete against them on a level playing field: the goal is not to drive them out of business. This is the logic that confuses people mightily. One minute HCAN is calling out the insurance industry for the profit-hungry killers they are, then they argue the companies need to stay in business to compete against a public plan honestly in the marketplace - even though they agree they never compete fairly, Medicare being the prime example. The health care reform proposals advocated by Jacob Hacker from the University of California at Berkeley are suddenly all the rage, but there is nothing new about them. He proposes a national health exchange of private plans with the addition of a public option (essentially Obama's position.) Hacker, like HCAN, is careful to assuage the fears of the private insurers and says under his scheme, "More Americans have private insurance after reform than do before - either through their employer or through the national exchange". Smells a bit like Massachusetts where 200,000 people remain uninsured and the costs to subsidize the program have doubled from $630 million to $1.3 billion. Single-payer advocates oppose the creation of a public plan for a different set of reasons. It doesn't make health care a human right that can never be taken away. It continues to divide, devalue, and define people by their health status. It can't address the endemic racial and gender disparities in the system, including the 12 million undocumented. It leaves the employer based system of health care provision intact. That link has to be broken so workers are free to change jobs, go on strike and not fear loss of coverage. The system would continue to have multiple payers and therefore the complexity and gaps in coverage that are inevitable when there are numerous bureaucracies to navigate. Where will the money come from to finance the plan, especially in a time of economic recession, like right now? A public plan is not fiscally sustainable because it's rooted in a multiple payer system that foregoes at least 84% of administrative savings. Single-payer on the other hand, would immediately inject 400 billion into the system by eliminating bureaucracy, billing apparatus, administrative waste, advertising, corporate profits, and CEO compensation. That's enough money to bring everyone into the system with no co-pays or deductibles. We dont need any more feasibility studies or examinations of single-payer in other countries. It's a proven fact that a single-payer system can cover everyone and control costs. Period, end of discussion. So the question becomes why don't the Democrats and HCAN fight to get rid of the parasitic private health insurance industry (the source of the crisis) once and for all instead of constantly and unsuccessfully, decade after decade, trying to rein in, regulate, and do an end run around them? For the Democrats, with the exception of John Conyers and a few others, they simply don't want to abolish the private insurance industry. They are capitalists and believe in the capitalist system that makes health care a commodity to be bought and sold. For them, health care is not a human right. And importantly, they don't want to take on President Obama who is opposed to single-payer. Like the true cowards they are, they will not oppose Obama on health care reform even though they disagree with him. HCAN thinks it's impossible to get rid of the insurance companies, they're too powerful, and they have too much money and influence. They don't believe a large social movement can be built to take on and win against the insurers and the government. The leadership of HCAN are the ones who would have said under slavery, "We can't win abolition, so let's settle for a few reforms that make the lives of slaves more bearable". This attitude is astonishing given the sea change in consciousness around health care. A number of events have coalesced to make winning a single-payer system possible. No longer does the invoking of "socialized medicine" scare people, not after the government has socialized billions of dollars of losses in the financial sector. If the government can bail out AIG, why not the health care system? Poll after poll shows the majority of Americans want a government run health care system that guarantees health care. People often express this by saying, "I want what they have in Canada." Physicians used to be an obstacle to single-payer, now 59% support single-payer. Employment-based health care is collapsing and employers want to get out of the business of providing health care to workers: it costs too much. Millions of laid off workers now realize tying insurance to employment status is a disaster; lose your job, lose coverage. Those with jobs are paying staggering premium increases for less coverage. Single-payer legislation has been introduced into the House HR 676, and SB 703 in the Senate. There is a grassroots movement, including unions, all over the country organizing and fighting for single-payer. And most significantly, people are ANGRY and want change. HCAN and Democrats like Schakowsky are deceiving and leading people down yet another dead end alley of incremental reform. We've had decades of incremental reform and now there are 50 million uninsured, 25 million underinsured and between 18,000 to 100,000 people die every year because they lack access to health care. For spineless Democrats like Schakowsky and HCAN, the day will never come when single-payer is "politically feasible," because if now isn't the time, when will it be? The fight to make health care a human right is the new civil rights struggle. We are standing on the shoulders of all the great social movements that have come before us. The time to win single-payer has never been better. We are going to keep fighting like hell to destroy the corporate killers, not create a faux option that allows them to live another day. S se puede, yes we can! Helen Redmond is a member of the Chicago Single-Payer Action Network and a Licensed Clinical Social Worker. She works in the emergency room at Cook County Hospital and blogs at http://helenredmond.wordpress.com She can be reached at redmondmadrid [at] yahoo.com --------10 of 10-------- ----------------------------- Fight Capitalized Medicine! ----------------------------- --------------------------- Stop Creeping Capitalism! --------------------------- ---------------------------- Kill Capitalism for Christ ---------------------------- ------------------------------ Capitalism - The Evil Umpire ------------------------------ ----------------------------------------------------------------------------- - 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 vote third party for president for congress now and forever Socialism YES Capitalism NO To GO DIRECTLY to an item, eg --------8 of x-------- do a find on --8
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