Progressive Calendar 08.19.13 /3
From: David Shove (
Date: Mon, 19 Aug 2013 14:18:45 -0700 (PDT)
P R O G R E S S I V E   C A L E N D A R   08.19.13

1.Stadium vote!         8.20 8am

2 Communities/Color 8.21 9am
3.Peace resolution    8.21 3:30pm

4. Paul Buchheit - Charles Koch:The Scariest Man in America
5. Lisa Graves    - ALEC Exposed: The Koch Connection
6. Juan Cole       - How to Create a Dictatorship

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From: to mann4mayor
Stadium vote! 8.20 8am
Fill the Courtroom!
Demand a vote on Vikings Stadium taxes this fall!
Press conference:
8:00 AM
Tuesday, August 20
North entrance, ground floor
In case of rain: main floor above ground level near pond
Hennepin County Government Center
Court hearing:
8:30 AM
Tuesday, August 20
Courtroom 1359, Court Tower
Judge: The Hon. Phillip D. Bush
Hennepin County Government Center
300 South 6th Street, Minneapolis, MN 55487

Doug Mann, with support from the Minneapolis Farmer Labor Association, is
suing the City of Minneapolis to give voters the chance to approve (or not)
the City's contribution of almost one billion dollars worth of tax revenues
and other resources to build and operate a new Vikings Stadium. On July 16,
Mann filed a petition for a writ of mandamus, [an order by the Court] that
commands the Minneapolis City Council to refer approval of the City's role
in funding the Vikings Stadium to voters in a referendum at the next
general election on November 5, 2013.

Mann asserts that the Minnesota legislature overstepped its constitutional
authority by not allowing the City Council to refer approval of the City's
financial obligations under the Vikings Stadium Act to the voters.
Furthermore, the legislature wrongly asserted that local-option sales tax
revenues are not "city resources" within the meaning of any law or city
charter provision, in order to circumvent a provision of the Minneapolis
Charter that requires voter approval for the use of more than ten million
dollars in city resources, including local sales tax revenues, to pay for a
stadium or professional sports facility.
Prepared and paid for by Citizens for a Stadium Vote
Treasurer: Doug Mann
3706 Logan Avenue North
Minneapolis, MN 55412
Phone 612 824-8800
mann4mayor [at]

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From: Alliance for Metropolitan Stability
Communities/Color 8.21 9am

You are invited to join local leaders from the public, private, non-profit
and philanthropic sectors to learn about an innovative model for organizing
communities of color for results. Leadership from the Coalition of
Communities of Color in Portland, Oregon are coming to the Twin Cities to
share the story of their history, formation, and work to transform the
racial equity landscape in Portland and its surrounding region.

Organizing Communities of Color
Wednesday, August 21
9:00 a.m—11:00 a.m.
Amherst H. Wilder Foundation, Auditorium
451 Lexington Parkway North
Saint Paul, MN 55104
*A continental breakfast will be provided

The Organizing Communities of Color is free but registration is required.
Hope to see you there!

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From: WAMM
Peace resolution 8.21 3:30pm

  Hearing: Kellogg Briand Pact Day

Wednesday, August 21, 3:30 p.m. Room 300, Saint Paul City Hall, 15 W
Kellogg Boulevard, St. Paul. Council member David Thune will introduce a
resolution calling for Aug 27 2013 the 85th anniversary of the Law against
War signing of the Kellogg Briand Pact to be Proclaimed Kellogg Briand Pact
Day. This Pact outlaws war, is signed by 84 countries including our own and
was engineered by the only person from Minnesota to ever win the Nobel
Peace Prize. It still is U.S. and International Law and is what Kellogg
Boulevard is named after.  Please come to the hearing and vote to support
this resolution. Sponsored by: Saint Paul City Council member David Thune.
FFI: Steve 612-869-2040. Two  articles in the August newsletter describe
the Kellogg Briand Pact and resolution:

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The Scariest Man in America
By Paul Buchheit
Charles Koch:The Scariest Man in America

Scary because he claims "We don't have the power to coerce anybody" while
providing massive funding to organizations that attack public education,
social programs, worker salaries, business regulations, and the environment.

Scary because he refers to himself with words like 'integrity' and
'principles' while saying "I want my fair share - and that's all of it."

Scary because he declares, "I want my legacy to be...a better way of life
for...all Americans." Here is some of the legacy of Charles Koch:

1. Environment

In Crossett, Arkansas, local waterways have been filled with toxic
chemicals by the nearby Georgia-Pacific plant, a likely contributor to the
surge in cancer and other illnesses in their community. A spokesman for
Georgia-Pacific called the allegations "sensationalized." But the EPA
reported that the Crossett plant released 136,000 pounds of toxic chemicals
to nearby waterways, and buried over 444,000 pounds in the soil to degrade.
A USA Today study ranked Crossett in the top percentile of communities for
schoolchildren's exposure to cancer-causing chemicals.

More recently, the besieged city of Detroit has become the dumping ground
for a three-story pile of petroleum coke covering an entire city block near
the Detroit River. The pile is owned by Koch Carbon, a company controlled
by Charles and David Koch. The mound of toxic matter has been spewing thick
black "fugitive dust" over the homes of nearby residents.

Koch Industries was ranked as one of the top air polluters by the Political
Economy Research Institute.

2. Government

Rampant cronyism threatens the economic foundations that have made this the
most prosperous country in the world. -- Charles Koch

Join NationofChange today by making a generous tax-deductible contribution
and take a stand against the status quo.

In a 2012 essay Charles Koch further criticized crony capitalism, saying
"This growing partnership between business and government is a destructive
force, undermining not just our economy and our political system, but the
very foundations of our culture." Yet Koch Industries is one of the biggest
beneficiaries of oil subsidies and government contracts. According to the
Center for Responsive Politics, the company has spent an average of almost
$12 million per year from 2008 to 2012 on oil and gas industry lobbying.

There's more. Over 100 bills introduced in 2013, backed by the American
Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) and heavily funded by the Kochs, seek
to drive down wages, benefits, and worker rights.3. Social Needs

The Nation reported that free-market libertarian Charles Koch coached
economist Friedrich Hayek in the acquisition of publicly-funded retirement
insurance and health care. Said Koch, "You are entitled to Social Security
payments [and to] hospital coverage."

Koch-funded organizations like The Heritage Foundation, The Cato Institute,
and The Reason Foundation oppose Social Security,climate change science,
gay marriage, and the Affordable Care Act.

4. Inequality

If you earn over $34,000 a year, you are one of the wealthiest 1% in the
world. -- Koch Foundation

With stunning condescension toward lower-income Americans who are one
emergency away from financial collapse, the Charles Koch Foundation
recently released a commercial that ranked a near-poverty-level $34,000
family among the Top 1% in the world. The Economic Policy Institute
calculated that a U.S. family of three would require an average of about
$48,000 a year to meet basic needs.

5. Minimum Wage

The minimum wage often hurts workers with the least experience. --, Charles Koch Institute

Charles Koch wants to eliminate the minimum wage, apparently believing that
"economic freedom" applies to people struggling to survive on a minimum
wage annual income of $14,500. He sermonizes, "Anything that people with
limited capital can do to raise themselves up, they keep throwing obstacles
in their way. And so we've got to clear those out. Or the minimum wage. Or
anything that reduces the mobility of labor."

Regarding that $14,500 per year, each Koch brother made that much from his
2012 investment income in 17 seconds at the office.

6. Education

The Koch Brothers' contribution of millions of dollars to higher education,
at first glance a magnanimous gesture, betrays less noble motives upon
examination. The funding comes with a stipulation for control over faculty
hiring and curriculum. As an extension of think tank media control, Koch's
surreptitious entry into over 150 colleges has guided academic decisions
toward a libertarian, Ayn-Rand-like philosophy. As an example, an agreement
with Florida State University stated, "Professorship Positions will be
recruited and hired in a manner consistent with both the...Faculty Handbook
and CGK Foundation's intent to support the...Program."

7. Taxes

I believe my business and non-profit investments are much more beneficial
to societal well-being than sending more money to Washington. -- Charles

Charles Koch may believe he can best decide how people should live. He
insists that "Much of what the government spends money on does more harm
than good." But as ThinkProgress notes, Koch's investments "at best advance
Koch's political ideology and at worst misinform American voters. Either
way, they are hardly a replacement for 'government spend[ing]' on things
like food assistance and basic medical service."

8. Business Ethics

Charles Koch offered a definition of integrity: "When the other person is
vulnerable and you're in a position to take advantage of them and you don't
do it."

According to a 1989 report by the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs, "Koch
Oil, the largest purchaser of Indian oil in the country, was engaged in a
widespread and sophisticated scheme to steal crude oil from Indians and
others through fraudulent mismeasuring and reporting."

Charles elaborated on his business management philosophy: "Every leader
needs to be a role model for these principles, because people will spot
hypocrisy a mile away."


Paul Buchheit is a college teacher with formal training in language
development and cognitive science. He is the founder and developer of
social justice and educational websites (,,, and the editor and main author of
"American Wars: Illusions and Realities" (Clarity Press). He can be reached
at paul [at]

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ALEC Exposed: The Koch Connection

Untold sums of cash poured into ALEC by Charles and David Koch have been an
effective investment in advancing their worldview.

Lisa Graves
July 12, 2011   |    This article appeared in the August 1-8, 2011 edition
of The Nation.

This article is part of a Nation series exposing the American Legislative
Exchange Council, in collaboration with the Center For Media and Democracy.
John Nichols introduces the series.

Hundreds of ALEC’s model bills and resolutions bear traces of Koch DNA: raw
ideas that were once at the fringes but that have been carved into
“mainstream” policy through the wealth and will of Charles and David Koch.
Of all the Kochs’ investments in right-wing organizations, ALEC provides
some of the best returns: it gives the Kochs a way to make their brand of
free-market fundamentalism legally binding.

No one knows how much the Kochs have given ALEC in total, but the amount
likely exceeds $1 million—not including a half-million loaned to ALEC when
the group was floundering. ALEC gave the Kochs its Adam Smith Free
Enterprise Award, and Koch Industries has been one of the select members of
ALEC’s corporate board for almost twenty years. The company’s top lobbyist
was once ALEC’s chairman. As a result, the Kochs have shaped legislation
touching every state in the country. Like ideological venture capitalists,
the Kochs have used ALEC as a way to invest in radical ideas and fertilize
them with tons of cash.

Take environmental protections. The Kochs have a penchant for paying their
way out of serious violations and coming out ahead. Helped by Koch
Industries’ lobbying efforts, one of the first measures George W. Bush
signed into law as governor of Texas was an ALEC model bill giving
corporations immunity from penalties if they tell regulators about their
own violation of environmental rules. Dozens of other ALEC bills would
limit environmental regulations or litigation in ways that would benefit

ALEC’s model legislation reflects parts of the Kochs’ agenda that have
little to do with oil profits. Long before ALEC started pushing
taxpayer-subsidized school vouchers, for example, the Koch fortune was
already underwriting attacks on public education. David Koch helped inject
the idea of privatizing public schools into the national debate as a
candidate for vice president in 1980. A cornerstone of the Libertarian
Party platform, which he bankrolled, was the call for “educational tax
credits to encourage alternatives to public education,” a plan to the right
of Ronald Reagan. Several pieces of ALEC’s model legislation echo this plan.

The Kochs’ mistrust of public education can be traced to their father,
Fred, who ranted and raved that the National Education Association was a
communist group and public-school books were filled with “communist
propaganda,” paranoia that extended to all unions, President Eisenhower and
the “pro-communist” Supreme Court. Such redbaiting might be ancient history
if fifty years later David were not calling President Obama a “hard-core
socialist” who is “scary.”

The Kochs have not just multiplied the wealth of their dad; they’ve
repackaged and amplified his worldview. David’s latest venture, Americans
for Prosperity, subsidizes the Tea Party movement, which repeats this
“socialist” smear. Charles is a member of the exclusive Mount Pelerin
Society, inspired by Frederic von Hayek’s antisocialist polemic The Road to
Serfdom. Through the Charles G. Koch Charitable Foundation, the Institute
for Humane Studies administers the Hayek Fund for Scholars and sister
programs to fund academics and staffers for like-minded groups across the
country. “Charles G. Koch Fellows” and interns stock ALEC, and have gone on
to direct ALEC task forces.

Another David Koch project, Citizens for a Sound Economy—which launched the
effort to repeal Glass-Steagall protections keeping banks from gambling in
securities—helped fuel the fight for “free trade,” an unpopular policy in
the 1980s. The North American Free Trade Agreement passed with help from
CSE and its corporate allies. ALEC resolutions for state legislators have
long supported such trade agreements in the face of local concerns about
job losses, and today the Koch free-market fantasy is reflected in ALEC’s
support for free trade pacts with Korea, Georgia, Colombia and other
countries. On just about every issue taken on by Koch’s CSE, ALEC has
provided legislative tools to carry them through to state legislatures,
from privatizing “federal and state services and assets,” as CSE put it, to
blocking common-sense caps on unlimited credit card interest rates.

ALEC and the Kochs often pursue parallel tracks. Just as ALEC “educates”
legislators, Koch funding has helped “tutor” hundreds of judges with
all-expenses-paid junkets at fancy resorts, where they learn about the
“free market” impact of their rulings. But ALEC also operates like an arm
of the Koch agenda, circulating bills that make their vision of the world
concrete. For a mere $25,000 a year, Koch Industries sits as an “equal”
board member with state legislators, influencing bills that serve as a wish
list for its financial or ideological interests.

It’s a pittance for the Kochs but far out of the reach of working
Americans. Ordinary citizens rely on our elected representatives’ efforts
to restore what’s left of the American Dream. But through ALEC, billionaire
industrialists are purchasing a version that seems like a real nightmare
for most Americans.

Lisa Graves, a former deputy assistant attorney general at the Justice
Department, is the executive director of the...

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How to Create a Dictatorship
By Juan Cole, Informed Comment
19 August 13

How to turn a democracy into a STASI authoritarian state in 10 easy steps:

Misuse the concept of a Top Secret government document (say, the date of
D-Day) and extend classification to trillions of mundane documents a year.

Classify all government crimes and violations of the Constitution as secret

Create a class of 4.5 million privileged individuals, many of them
corporate employees, with access to classified documents but allege it is
illegal for public to see leaked classified documents

Spy on the public in violation of the Constitution

Classify environmental activists as terrorists while allowing Big Coal and
Big Oil to pollute and destroy the planet

Share info gained from NSA spying on public with DEA, FBI, local law
enforcement to protect pharmaceuticals & liquor industry from competition
from pot, or to protect polluters from activists

Falsify to judges and defense attorneys how allegedly incriminating info
was discovered

Lie and deny to Congress you are spying on the public.

Criminalize the revelation of government crimes and spying as Espionage

Further criminalize whistleblowing as "Terrorism", have compradors arrest
innocent people, detain them, and confiscate personal effects with no cause
or warrant (i.e. David Miranda, partner of Glenn Greenwald)

Presto, what looks like a democracy is really an authoritarian state ruling
on its own behalf and that of 2000 corporations, databasing the activities
of 312 million innocent citizens and actively helping destroy the planet
while forestalling climate activism


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