|Progressive Calendar 02.06.10||<– Date –> <– Thread –>|
|From: David Shove (shove001tc.umn.edu)|
|Date: Sat, 6 Feb 2010 13:26:53 -0800 (PST)|
P R O G R E S S I V E C A L E N D A R 02.06.10 1. CUAPB 2.06 1:30pm 2. UN of MN 2.06 2pm 3. Northtown vigil 2.06 2pm 4. 9-11 truth films 2.06 3/5/7/8pm FREE 5. EXCO phonathon 2.06 5pm 6. Stillwater vigil 2.06 1pm 7. RNC 2.07 3:30pm 8. Tom Cleland - CRA abandons Bicking 9. Alexander Cockburn - Downhill from Greensboro: the Left, 1960-2010 --------1 of 9-------- From: Michelle Gross <mgresist [at] visi.com> Subject: CUAPB 2.06 1:30pm Meetings: Every Saturday at 1:30 p.m. at Walker Church, 3104 16th Avenue South http://www.CUAPB.org Communities United Against Police Brutality 3100 16th Avenue S Minneapolis, MN 55407 Hotline 612-874-STOP (7867) --------2 of 9-------- From: United Nations Association of Minnesota <info [at] unamn.org> Subject: UN of MN 2.06 2pm United Nations Association of Minnesota Annual Meeting - Feb 6, 2010 Dear UNA-MN Supporter, You are invited to the 2010 UNA-MN Annual Meeting! Please join us for an afternoon of socializing with other UN supporters, UNA business, appetizers and an exciting talk on the UN Climate Change Summit in Copenhagen. Saturday, February 6, 2010 2:00pm-4:00pm Weisman Art Museum $25 per person ($10 for students) AGENDA 1:15pm Consider arriving early to tour the galleries 2:00pm Social Time: Hors D'Oeuvres from Kafe 421 & Beverages 2:30pm Annual Meeting and Board Election 3:00pm PROGRAM: Paul Thompson, Speaker Climate Action Activist, Edina Energy and Environment Commission and Founder of Cool Planet "No Deal in Copenhagen? The Real Work Continues." Paul Thompson attended the UN Climate Change Summit in Copenhagen, Denmark. He was accredited through ICLEI, Local Government for Sustainability, which works with cities of all sizes around the world to measure carbon emissions and use software to help develop action plans to help set and meet carbon reduction goals. Paul also volunteers with the Will Steger Foundation and 350.org, an organization dedicated to educating the public about the need to embed the number of 350 ppm of CO2 into the international treaty that was not formed in Copenhagen. United Nations Association of Minnesota info [at] unamn.org 612.879.7512 Where: Weisman Art Museum 333 East River Parkway Minneapolis, MN 55455 --------3 of 9-------- From: Vanka485 [at] aol.com Subject: Northtown vigil 2.06 2pm Peace vigil at Northtown (Old Hwy 10 & University Av), every Saturday 2-3pm --------4 of 9-------- From: Joan Malerich <joanmdm [at] iphouse.com> Subject: 9-11 truth films 2.06 3/5/7/8pm FREE FREE BELOW IS THE SCHEDULE FOR THE 9-11 FILM FESTIVAL SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 6: We cannot forget 9-11, as it was set up to justify the maiming and killing of millions of innocent people AND the destruction of whole nations in the "war against terrorism." 9/11 TRUTH FILM FESTIVAL Saturday, February 6th, 2010 All films are FREE and open to the public 1. Zero 3:00 pm Italian made documentary, 2008 Mayday Books 301 Cedar Ave Minneapolis, MN 612-333-4719 Roberta Benson 612-203-2872 2. 9/11: Press for Truth 5:00 pm Family members fight for an investigation, 2006 Walker United Methodist Church 3104 16th Ave. S. Minneapolis, MN 55407 612-722-6612 Bruce Stahlberg 612-558-5959 3. 9/11 False Flag 5:00 pm German made documentary, 2008 Mapps Coffeehouse 1810 Riverside Ave Minneapolis, MN 55454 612-338-6398 4. 9-11 Mysteries 7:00 pm Demolition: evidence and analysis Arise Bookstore 2441 Lyndale Avenue South Minneapolis, MN 612-871-7110 John Simcox 5. Loose Change: 2nd Edition 7:00 pm Anomalies in the official story, 2007 Home of Dave Nelson 3621 East Minnehaha Parkway Minneapolis, MN 55406 612-722-6342 Dave Nelson and Dori Ullman 6. Rethinking 9/11: Why Truth and Reconciliation are Better Strategies than Global War 7:00 pm Locally made, thoughtful, academic, 2008 All Nations Indian Church 1515 East 23rd Street (at Bloomington) Minneapolis, MN Michael Cavlan 612-327-6902 7. 9/11 Blueprint for Truth 7:00 pm Architects & Engineers for 9/11 Truth, 2009 University of St. Thomas 3M Auditorium/Owen Science Center #150 SW corner of Cretin Street and Summit Avenue St. Paul, MN 55105 Michael Andregg 651-962-5907 8. Hijacking Catastrophe: 9/11, Fear, & the Selling of American Empire 2006 8:00 pm Casket Arts Cinema 681 17th Avenue NE #145 (Enter near NE corner loading dock) Minneapolis, MN 55418 Roberta Benson 612-203-2872 Endorsed by: Minnesotans for 9/11 Truth We Are Change Minnesota --------5 of 9-------- From: EXCO <excotc [at] gmail.com> Subject: EXCO phonathon 2.06 5pm 1st Seasonal EXCO Phone-a-thon! /Saturday, February 6th, 5-9pm 2620 30th Ave S. Minneapolis/ Want to do your part to help make EXCO classes a success? Come to the 1st ever EXCO Phone-a-thon this Saturday to remind people that classes are starting up. EXCO is no bigger than its community so if you like EXCO and can make it, make it!†We are having food so do let us know: Erin mailto:erin.l.dyke [at] gmail.com, 815-302-2481. See you this Saturday at 2620 30th Ave S, Minneapolis! ¬ --------6 of 9-------- From: scot b <earthmannow [at] comcast.net> Subject: Stillwater vigil 2.06 1pm A weekly Vigil for Peace Every Sunday, at the Stillwater bridge from 1- 2 p.m. Come after Church or after brunch ! All are invited to join in song and witness to the human desire for peace in our world. Signs need to be positive. Sponsored by the St. Croix Valley Peacemakers. If you have a United Nations flag or a United States flag please bring it. Be sure to dress for the weather . For more information go to <http://www.stcroixvalleypeacemakers.com/>http://www.stcroixvalleypeacemakers.com/ For more information you could call 651 275 0247 or 651 999 - 9560 --------7 of 9-------- From: info [at] rnc8.org Subject: RNC 2.07 3:30pm Results from February 2nd Court Hearing Yesterday, the RNC 8 and a courtroom full of supporters sat through a hearing regarding several motions that had been filed in the previous months. While the proceedings were less than riveting, there were some surprising results. Even our old friend Bob Fletcher couldn't resist showing up briefly to watch today's hearing. Biggest news of the day? The trial date is set for October 25, 2010, so mark your calendars now. There will also be a number of new motions heard in May, so mark these dates as well: May 3-6, 13, and 14. During these days, the lawyers for the 8 will argue motions such as ones to suppress evidence seized during the preemptive raids prior to the and the probable cause motion<http://rnc8.org/wp-content/uploads/2010/02/memo-pc-jnt.pdf>as a part of evidentiary hearings that will include testimony from witnesses. More information will be available as the dates approach, but court support will be needed as always. In addition to scheduling the hearing and trial dates, Judge Teresa Warner granted the motion to use a jury questionnaire<http://rnc8.org/wp-content/uploads/2010/01/mtn-questionnaire126.pdf>. This questionnaire will hopefully result in a more thorough examination of the jurors. She also took under advisement other motions regarding payments to FBI informants, and the discriminatory motion<http://rnc8.org/wp-content/uploads/2010/01/luce-memo-ep-and-attachment.pdf>. The motion re: IndyTACT<http://rnc8.org/wp-content/uploads/2010/01/indycomp100129093428.pdf>was withdrawn and may be refiled at a later date. We hope to receive favorable rulings on those soon and will let you know when we hear the results. As the pre-trial work proceeds and the trial date approaches, we need all the help and support we can get to fight these bogus charges! Now is a perfect time to get involved. Come to the next RNC 8 Defense Committee meeting to get plugged in: Sunday, February 7, 3:30pm Walker Community Church (in the basement) 3104 16th Ave S, Minneapolis --------8 of 9-------- CRA abandons Bicking by Tom Cleland <tomcleland [at] comcast.net> Fri, 5 Feb 2010 18:04:34 -0600 On Wed. Feb. 3 I attended a meeting of the Minneapolis Civilian Review Authority (CRA), a volunteer board appointed by the Mayor and City Council to investigate citizen complaints of police misconduct. The meeting began with a surprise visit from Tim Dolan, who had not attended a CRA meeting since becoming police chief. He spoke for a few minutes, and left shortly after. He stated that he does believe in civilian review, and expressed a willingness to answer CRA questions at a later date. This apparently so impressed the board that they failed to get anything in writing, leaving to chance whether Dolan will keep his word. The CRA refused to go on record. They rejected a resolution, offered by Dave Bicking, which would have verified that Dolan follow through. But the main event of the evening involved a written message from CRA Chair Don Bellfield to CRA member Dave Bicking, calling for Bicking to resign if he attended a forum on whether to reappoint Police Chief Dolan. The following paragraph is from an email I got promoting the Jan. 26 forum: "DAVE BICKING: Member of the Mpls Civilian Police Review Authority (CRA), which recently released an 18 page report on the performance of Chief Tim Dolan in relation to his impact on Civilian Review. The report rates Dolan as 'far more negative than positive', especially in the area of imposing discipline on officers." Bellfield, who was absent from the meeting, contended this was not neutral enough, even though the promotion nowhere claimed Bicking was speaking on behalf of the CRA. So Bicking offered some resolutions which would have clarified that the CRA was not calling on Bicking to resign, since members have a right to exercise their freedom of speech as individuals on their own time. The following CRA members voted to gag Bicking: Justin Terrell, Vernon Wetterach, Sharlee Benson, and Patrick Kvidera. Abstaining was Pam Franklin. Voting in favor were Dave Bicking and Austin Zuege. Staffer Lee Reid spoke about respect as a reason to gag Bicking. The board did adopt unanimously a resolution to meet so they could clarify their neutrality policy. They then opened the meeting for 3-minute statements from the public. It was a Who's Who of Minnesota's leading progressives, there to defend Dave. Michelle Gross of Citizens United Against Police Brutality (CUAPB) was furious. When acting chair Justin Terrell said that her time was up, she defied him to call the cops, and kept on speaking. Darrell Robinson, also of CUAPB, and who has been beaten by police, reminded the board that the city is under siege. Michael Cavlan accused the CRA of complicity with the Mayor and City Council. Also speaking were Amber Garlan, Jan Nye, David Weisberg, and myself. Also in attendance were David Shove, Melissa Hill, and Dori Ullman. When it was my turn to speak, I said I was at the Jan. 26 meeting, and that Dave Bicking stated repeatedly that he was there as a private citizen, and not speaking on behalf of the CRA. I said that as private citizens we have a right to exercise our freedom of speech. I quoted Thomas Jefferson, "Information is the currency of democracy," and asked, "How can we have an informed citizenry if our brightest citizens are censored from voicing their opinions?" I agreed with others that Dave was quite an asset to the CRA, and that their work is important. I explained how, as a political activist, I set out to verify CUAPB claims, and how my research was documented on my blog. I mentioned Dominic Felder, Tycel Nelson, the black cops that were demoted under Dolan, and how Dolan gave the Medal of Valor to the cop who shot Fong Lee. After the meeting, I asked Michelle Gross what motivated Justin Terrell, Vernon Wetterach, Sharlee Benson, and Patrick Kvidera. She believes that they're benchwarmers, looking to pad their resumes, possibly seeking higher office in the future, and that's why they don't want to rock the boat. I asked her about CRA duties, and she explained that reviewing citizen complaints is just the tip of the iceberg. They need to be doing a lot more in terms of citizen outreach. Well, if they're not doing it, and Dave can't do it, then where does that leave us? Afterward, Justin Terrell told me he would continue to support Dave, but he sure didn't go to bat for him during the meeting. Below are excerpts from three significant motions Dave Bicking offered at the meeting, none of which passed. - MOTION 1 - The CRA Board directs the Board Chair to invoke Section 172.130(d) of the CRA ordinance and notify the Executive Committee of the Chief's failure to comply with the requirements of that section, particularly the failure to base decisions on the adjudicated facts as determined by the CRA Board. OUTCOME: This failed 2-5. - MOTION 2 - .Be it resolved that: The CRA board clarifies that the Chair was not speaking on their behalf, and they did not authorize the letter. The CRA board as a whole clarifies that it does not agree with the content of the letter. The CRA board authorizes the drafting of a letter clarifying its position as stated above, with that letter to be sent to all the recipients of the letter sent by Chair Bellfield. OUTCOME: This motion was tabled. - MOTION 3 - .Be it resolved that the CRA Board does not endorse the content of Chair Bellfield's email, and that the Board clarifies that the Chair does not have the power to call for a member's resignation, and that the members' rights to free speech and free association should not be limited unless they preclude objective and impartial adjudication of cases, or unless the member represents his/her personal views as being those of the CRA board as a whole. OUTCOME: This failed, 2-4, with 1 abstention, and was the vote to "gag Bicking" described above. Pam Franklin, the abstaining vote, said later she lost track and would have voted in favor. -- At 06:24 PM 2/5/2010, Amber Garlan wrote: Good Blog Tom, very detailed and informative! This is the 1st CRA meeting that I attended, and what I saw was fear. Fear of Chief Dolan, fear of the mayor and fear of the city council. How can the CRA do its job if they have so much fear? I am so proud and grateful for the work Dave Bicking does! He makes me proud to be a Green! -Peace, Amber -- Date: Sat, 06 Feb 2010 09:32:33 -0600 From: Michelle Gross <mgresist [at] minn.net> That's the point, Amber. They never did their job until Dave Bicking came along doing most of the work and prodding the others, which is why the police federation, the cops and the city have been after him. The significance of that meeting was that the rest of the board had a defining moment to show which side they were on. They chose the wrong side. I wanted to say that I really appreciated your comments. Your observation of the fear level of that pathetic board was right on. Michelle [Gross] [Another thumping of democracy and police accountability by those responsible for police accountatility - mayor, chief, CRA board, and perhaps soon - we will see - the Mpls City Council reappointing Dolan. This should be fought publicly - the first on the next public CRA meeting Mar 3 6:30pm Mpls City Hall 333 - stand up for accountability and courage. -ed] --------9 of 9-------- Downhill From Greensboro: the Left, 1960-2010 By ALEXANDER COCKBURN February 5 - 7, 2010 CounterPunch Half a century ago, a new decade ushered in the rebirth of the American left and of those forces for radical change grievously wounded by the savage cold war pogroms of the Fifties. If you want to draw a line to indicate when history took a great leap forward, it could be February 1, 1960, when four black students from Agricultural and Technical College of North Carolina, sat down at a segregated lunch counter in Woolworth's department store in Greensboro, North Carolina. The chairs were for whites. Blacks had to stand and eat. A day later they returned, with 25 more students. On February 4 four white women joined them from a local college. By February 7, there were 54 sit-ins throughout the South in 15 cities in 9 states. By July 25 the store, part of a huge national chain, and plagued by $200,000 in lost business, threw in the towel and officially desegregated the lunch counter. (Last week here on our site we had a piece by one of the participants in that sit-in, Cecil Brown, about the new museum in Greensboro honoring that event, and Obama's letter doing the same.) Three months later, the city of Raleigh, NC, 80 miles east of Greensboro, saw the founding of the Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee (SNCC), seeking to widen the lunch-counter demonstrations into a broad, militant movement. SNCC's first field director was Bob Moses, who said that he was drawn by the "sullen, angry and determined look" of the protesters, qualitatively different from the "defensive, cringing" expression common to most photos of protesters in the South. That same spring of 1960 saw the founding conference of Students for a Democratic Society (SDS) in Ann Arbor Michigan, the organization that later played a leading role in organizing the college-based component of the antiwar movement. In May the House UnAmerican Activities Committee was scheduled to hold red-baiting hearings in San Francisco. Students from the University of California at Berkeley crossed the Bay to jeer the hearings. They got blasted off the steps of City Hall by cops with power hoses, but the ridicule helped demolish the decade-long power of HUAC. Within four short years the Civil Rights Movement pushed Lyndon Johnson into signing the Civil Rights Act of 1964. By 1965 the first big demonstrations against the war were rolling into Washington. By the decade's end there had been a convulsion in American life: a new reading of America's past, an unsparing scrutiny of the ideology of "national security" and of Empire. The secret, shameful histories of the FBI and CIA were dragged into the light of day; the role of the universities in servicing imperial wars exposed; mutinies of soldiers in Vietnam a daily occurrence; consumer capitalism under daily duress from critics like Ralph Nader. By 1975 the gay and women's movements were powerful social forces; president Nixon had been forced to resign. The left seem poised for an assertive role in American politics for the next quarter century. Of course a new radical world did not spring fully formed from the void, on January 1, 1960. Already, in 1958 a black boycott of lunch counters in Oklahoma City, suggested by the 8-year old daughter of NAACP Youth Council leader Clara Luper, a local high school teacher, had forced change in that city. Luper was greatly influenced by Rosa Parks, who famously refused to surrender her bus seat to a white man in Montgomery, Alabama in 1955, starting the bus boycott that launched Martin Luther King's public career. Parks was a trained organizer who, like King, attended sessions at the Highlander Folk School, founded by Christian Socialists, close to the Communist Party, one of whom, Don West, began his career as an as a high-school agitator organizing demonstrations in 1915 outside cinemas featuring Griffith's Birth of a Nation, a violently racist movie praising the Ku Klux Klan for protecting whites from black violence after the Civil War. So there are political genealogies that must be honored, but this is not to occlude disasters endured by the left in the 1940s and Fifties - disasters whose consequences reverberate to this day. The first was the historic bargain struck by Roosevelt with organized labor from the late 1930s on, by which unions got automatic deduction of members' dues for their treasuries sanctioned by the federal government, in return for witch-hunting the Trotskyist and later Communist left out of the labor movement. Hugely important was Roosevelt's ouster of the great progressive, Henry Wallace, from the vice presidential slot in 1944, substituting the appalling machine-Democrat Harry Truman who stepped into the Oval Office on Roosevelt's death in 1945, and promptly dropped atom bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, then presided over the birth of the cold war and the rise of a permanently militarized US economy. Wallace headed the Progressive Party ticket in 1948 in a four way race which, with Truman's victory, inscribed the unvarying Democratic-Republican either/or on the American political landscape. By the end of the 1940s there was no powerful independent left political formation, an absence which continues to this day. By the mid 1950s the labor unions, the academies, all government establishments had been purged in the witch hunts - a bipartisan auto-da-fe whose most diligent red baiters included not only Senator Joe McCarthy but Robert Kennedy. The surviving left was mostly in the peace movement, notably the Quakers. A prime issue was atmospheric nuclear testing, dooming thousands of Americans to premature deaths from cancer. In terms of organized politics the explosion of radical energy in the 1960s culminated in the peace candidacy of George McGovern, nominated by the Democrats in Miami in 1972. The response of the labor unions financing the party, and of the party bosses, was simply to abandon McGovern and ensure the victory of Nixon. Since that day the party has remained immune to radical challenge. Jimmy Carter, the southern Democrat installed in the White House in 1977, embraced neoliberalism, and easily beat off a challenge by the left's supposed champion, the late Ted Kennedy. The antiwar movement which cheered America's defeat in Vietnam mostly sat on its hands as Carter and his National Security aide Zbigniev Brzezinski ramped up military spending and led America into "the new cold war", fought in Afghanistan and Central America. Demure under the Democrat Carter, the left did organize substantial resistance to Reagan's wars in Central America in the 1980s. It also rallied to the radical candidacy of Jesse Jackson, the first serious challenge of a black man for the presidency, a Baptist minister and political organizer who had been in Memphis with Martin Luther King when the latter was assassinated in 1968. With his "Rainbow coalition" Jackson ran for the Democratic nomination in 1984 and in 1988, with a platform that represented an anthology of progressive ideas from the 1960s. He attracted a large number of supporters, many of them from the white working class. Each time the Democratic party shrugged him aside and elected feeble white liberals - Mondale and Dukakis - who plummeted to defeat by Reagan and George Bush Sr. The left's rout was consummated in the Nineties by Bill Clinton who managed to retain fairly solid left support during his two terms, despite signing two trade treaties devastating to labor, in the form of the North America Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA )and the WTO; despite the lethal embargo against Iraq and NATO's war on Yugoslavia; despite successful onslaughts on welfare programs for the poor and on constitutional freedoms. Two important reminders about political phenomena peculiar to America: the first is the financial clout of the "non-profit" foundations, tax-exempt bodies formed by rich people to dispense their wealth according to political taste. Jeffrey St Clair and I wrote several pieces about this in our CounterPunch newsletter in the mid-Nineties. Much of the "progressive sector" in America owes its financial survival - salaries, office accommodation etc - to the annual disbursements of these foundations which cease abruptly at the first manifestation of radical heterodoxy. In the other words most of the progressive sector is an extrusion of the dominant corporate world, just are the academies, similarly dependent on corporate endowments. The big liberal foundations were perfectly happy with Clinton's brand of neoliberalism and took swift action to tame any unwelcome radical tendencies in both the environmental and the women's movements. Clinton's drive to ratify the "free trade" treaty with Mexico and Canada provoked a potentially threatening alliance of labor unions and environmental groups. Eventually the big liberal foundations exerted some muscle, and major enviro groups came out for the Treaty. It was John Adams of the Natural Resources Defense Council who crowed, "We broke the back of the environmental resistance to NAFTA". The major funders of these latter groups included the Pew Charitable Trusts, a foundation set up in the 1940s by heirs to the Sun Oil company. By the mid-1990s Pew was giving the environmental movement about $20 million a year. Two other foundations, both derived from oil companies, gave another $20 million. The Howard Heinz Endowment and the Heinz Family Philanthropies, run by Teresa Heinz, Sen John Heinz's widow (now John Kerry's wife) have played a major role in funding a neoliberal environmental agenda. Also influential is the Rockefeller Family Fund, which oversees the Environmental Grantmakers Association, pivotal in allocating the swag, hence controlling the agenda. By the end of the Nineties the green movement - aside from small radical, underfunded grass roots groups - had become a wholly owned subsidiary of the Democratic Party, hence of corporate America. For its part, the women's movement steadily devolved into a single issue affair, focused almost entirely on defending women's right to abortions, under assault from the right. Women's groups, many of them getting big money from liberal Hollywood (which devotedly supported Clinton), swerved away from larger issues of social justice and kept silent as Clinton destroyed safety nets for poor women. The gay movement, radical in the 1970s and 1980s, steadily retreated into campaigns for gay marriage and "hate crime laws", the first being a profoundly conservative acquiescence in state-sanctioned relationships, and the second being an assault on free speech. A second important reminder concerns the steady collapse of the organized Leninist or Trotskyite left which used to provide a training ground for young people who could learn the rudiments of political economy and organizational discipline, find suitable mates and play their role in reproducing the left, red diaper upon red diaper, tomorrow's radicals, nourished on the Marxist classics. Somewhere in the late Eighties and early Nineties, coinciding with collapses further East - presumptively but not substantively a great victory for the Trotskyist or Maoist critiques - this genetic strain shriveled into insignificance. An adolescent soul not inoculated by sectarian debate, not enriched by the Eighteenth Brumaire and study groups of Capital, is open to any infection, such as 9/11 conspiracism and junk-science climate catastrophism substituting for analysis of political economy at the national or global level. Thus the Bush years saw near extinction of the left's capacity for realistic political analysis. Hysteria about the consummate evil of Bush and Cheney led to a vehement insistence that any Democrat would be qualitatively better, whether it be Hillary Clinton, carrying all the neoliberal baggage of the Nineties, or Barack Obama, whose prime money source was Wall Street. Of course black America - historically the most radical of all the Democratic Party's constituencies, was almost unanimously behind Obama and will remain loyal to the end. Having easily beguiled the left in the important primary campaigns of 2008, essentially by dint of skin tone and uplift, Obama stepped into the Oval Office confident that the left would present no danger as he methodically pursues roughly the same agenda as Bush, catering to the requirements of the banks, the arms companies and the national security establishment in Washington, most notably the Israel lobby. As Obama ramps up troop presence in Afghanistan, there is still no anti war movement, such as there was in 2002-4 during Bush's attack on Iraq. The labor unions have been shrinking relentlessly in numbers and clout. Labor's last major victory was the UPS strike in 1997. Its footsoldiers and its money are still vital for Democratic candidates - but corporate America holds the decisive purse-strings, from which a U.S. Supreme Court decision on January 21 has now removed almost all restraints. Labor has seen its most cherished goal in recent years vanish down the plug. This was Employee Free Choice Act (EFCA)amendments to the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) that would help boost organizing and bargaining in the private sector. The latest statistics from the U.S. Department of Labor show why EFCA is necessary, if not entirely sufficient, for a union revival. As Steve Early wrote here last week organized labor in private industry lost 10 per cent of its membership in 2009 mainly in manufacturing and construction--the worst annual decline in the last quarter century. Obama was explicit, even in the campaign, in telling labor leaders that as president he would not press labor law reform. For the rest of his term Obama can press forward with the neoliberal agenda that has now flourished through six presidencies. He and the Democratic Party display insouciance towards the left's anger. Rightly so. What have they to fear? ------------------------------------------------------------------------------ - 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 Research almost any topic raised here at: CounterPunch http://counterpunch.org Dissident Voice http://dissidentvoice.org Common Dreams http://commondreams.org Once you're there, do a search on your topic, eg obama drones
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