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Mole's Progressive Democrat

The Progressive Democrat Newsletter grew out of the frustration of the 2004 election. Originally intended for New York City progressives, its readership is now national. For anyone who wants to be alerted by email whenever this newsletter is updated (usually weekly), please send your email address and let me know what state you live in (so I can keep track of my readership).

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Location: Brooklyn, New York, United States

I am a research biologist in NYC. Married with two kids living in Brooklyn.

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  • Wednesday, June 08, 2011

    PROGRESSIVE DEMOCRAT NEWSLETTER: Scaled down version issue 3

    Readership doesn't respond as well to this scaled down version of the newsletter...I just don't get the same traffic as when I put more effort in. Which is not surprising. But it is still more than when I don't up date at all. And since I still don't have the time or energy to go back to the old version, will continue this form for a bit.

    Right now in America, the biggest, most important progressive effort remains the fight to protect working and middle class Americans and our unions from attacks from the right wing extremists. They have been destroying our rights and we have to fight back, supporting the unions that won us those rights.

    I believe that what has started in Wisconsin, and is spreading to other states, particularly Ohio, Michigan, and Indiana, is a real sea change in American politics...IF we come together and fight back as a united front. Now is the time we need to fight...and I see myself as something of a cheerleader for that fight.

    Doing the bidding of the Koch Brothers, the NYC Billionaires, the Teabagger Republicans in Wisconsin, Ohio and Indiana are trying to destroy the unions that brought us the 40 hour work week, overtime pay, child labor laws...the WEEKEND! Now the governor of Indiana saw which way the wind was blowing and backed off a bit, but these three states are currently the main battle ground between the pro-Billionaire Teabagger Republicans and regular working class Americans. And we have to win in these three states BIG time to slap down the right wing attack on our firefighters, cops, teachers and nurses.

    The Republicans have bitten off more than they can chew. The American public, who basically prefer unions, firefighters, police, teachers and nurses better than billionaires, are not happy at all at the right wing attack on unions. In fact, the American public is telling the Teabaggers and their Billionaire Masters:

    Photobucket
    (image borrowed from this site)

    We're angry and we are NOT going to take it anymore...

    The Teabagger Republicans HATE unions, fire safety laws, firefighters, police, teachers, nurses...they are EAGER to cut the pay and benefits to these people just like they are EAGER to cut taxes on the rich.

    I say no. Absolutely NO to the Teabagger Republican attack on working class Americans. I am sticking to the unions and ask you to join me:



    Remember just what the fight for unions was really like:



    Woodie Guthrie singing This Land is Your land:



    And as a bonus, Bruce Springsteen singing the same: (at an Obama rally)



    First off, I vow to never again use a Koch Brothers product to wipe my ass. Back in the day boycotting products from union busting companies was ingrained at least in this Jewish Liberal's family mind set. Now I see people arguing effectiveness and all that. Hell, I just don't want my money going to the Billionaire Koch Brothers. It's a matter of sticking with the union, whether or not it hurts the Billionaire Koch Brothers. It's a matter of solidarity.

    Now I admit the construction products they make are perhaps beyond my reach to boycott, but their paper goods are fair game and I WILL NOT BUY THESE PRODUCTS:

    (Georgia-Pacific products)

    Angel Soft toilet paper
    Brawny paper towels
    Dixie plates, bowls, napkins and cups
    Mardi Gras napkins and towels
    Quilted Northern toilet paper
    Soft 'n Gentle toilet paper
    Sparkle napkins
    Vanity fair napkins
    Zee napkins
    Georgia-Pacific paper products and envelopes

    Then again I prefer recycled paper products anyway. Seventh Generation or Marcal for example. The Koch brothers may not care...but I sure do. I am sticking with the union and that means, to the best of my ability, boycotting union busters.

    Now let's get to Wisconsin. I have been raising money for the Wisconsin recalls and beyond, and have so far raised just over $1500. I'd like to make it $2000 in the next few days. For America's sake: GIVE AT LEAST $14 TO RETAKING WISCONSIN FOR THE UNIONS And if you want to learn more about the fight in Wisconsin and the great candidates we have running to fight for our unions, please check out my diary on Daily Kos.

    And for those who want to LOOK BEYOND WISCONSIN to prepare for taking the fight further, I have a Solidarity Across Four States Act Blue Site which includes Michigan, Indiana and Ohio. So far I have raised $600 on this site. This site in some ways is more important even than the Wisconsin Solidarity site I am pushing above, because it aims to expand the fight across four states for now. I'd love to see that site raise over $1000 in the next week, so please help if you can.

    And there is so much more you can do.

    To find out more ways you can help in Wisconsin, visit the Wisconsin AFL-CIO website. In particular check out their action page.

    To find out more ways to help in Ohio (including phone banks), visit the Ohio AFL-CIO website. Here is their action page.

    And to help out in Indiana (which I am convinced will be a battlefield again soon), visit the Indiana AFL-CIO website.

    And for those who want to hear my rather colorful remarks on the Republican attack on Congressman Anthony Weiner, please read this: As long as they have a Boehner, they should lay off our Weiner.

    I don't defend Weiner. In many ways he deserves to get some crap for what he did. But I refuse to let the holier-than-thou Republican Party try to claim the moral high ground when they actual shelter outright pedophiles.


    FROM THE AFL-CIO:

    Next Up Young Workers Summit:

    The second annual AFL-CIO Young Workers Summit is set for Minneapolis on Sept. 29-Oct. 2 and you can register now. This Next Up gathering of young workers is part of the long-term outreach plan to workers 35 and younger developed at the initial Summit last year.

    In Minneapolis, says AFL-CIO Secretary-Treasurer Liz Shuler:

    Young workers, activists and leaders from all over the country will continue mobilizing to create an economy that works for all working people, including young people.

    The economic focus is critical as unemployment for young people is far higher than the population at large. According to a new report by the Economic Policy Institute (EPI), the unemployment rate for 16- to 24-year-olds averaged 18.4 percent in 2010, compared with 9.6 percent overall.

    The conference will also explore ways to:

    * Open the doors of the union movement to young workers.
    * Fight back against the attacks on workers’ rights that are more prevalent than ever.
    * Protect the rights of workers to form unions.
    * Build political mobilization.
    * Serve communities and more.

    One of the major initiatives developed in the initial Young Workers Summit was the Young Workers Advisory Council (YWAC) that partners with the AFL-CIO Executive Council to develop better communication and opportunities for young activists and leaders in the union movement.

    Also, last year, young workers called for mentoring initiatives to help young union members grow into leadership roles, establishment of a young worker constituency group, an annual national youth summit each year, a website on national, state and local opportunities and blogs that highlight best practices for involving young workers among a number of priorities.

    Be sure to visit the just-launched Young Workers Summit online here that includes registration, hotel and transportation information, along with a “Welcome to Minneapolis” guide.



    An Opinion Piece from Martin Luther King III: After Wisconsin: The Birth of a New Coalition of Conscience


    SOME OF MY RECENT ARTICLES:

    One of the most critical actions you can take: The time is NOW for Renewable Energy

    Honoring the First Black Nobel Prize Winner: Ralph Bunche

    Helping my wife's Feminist Karate Dojo: The Center for Anti-Violence Education Punch-a-thon: Helping my wife's Karate Dojo

    A Woman You Should Know About: Majora Carter


    ONGOING EFFORTS:

    Walmart Watch: seeks to hold Walmart fully accountable for its impact on communities, the American workforce, the retail sector, the environment and the nation's economy. Walmart Watch exists to challenge Walmart to more fully embrace its corporate responsibilities and live up to its position as the largest corporation in the United States.

    Green America's Green Business Program: provides the networks, resources, and technical assistance needed for socially and environmentally responsible businesses to emerge and thrive in communities across the US. Plus, we help individual consumers shift their spending to support green businesses and help build a green economy. Find local green businesses (by zip code) here.

    BIODIESEL STATIONS: If you have a diesel car or truck, you can help both the environment and the America economy by buying biodiesel rather than Saudi, Iranian or Venezuelan oil-based gasoline. To find biodiesel stations near you, click here. To read more about biodiesel as a fuel and as part of the American economy, click here.

    FOOD CO-OPS: food co-ops are a great way to buy more responsibly for less money while eating healthier. My wife and I took 7 years living down the street from America's largest food co-op before we took the plunge. Our food bills went down a little while the quality, environmental responsibility and healthiness of our diet went way up. It is also a great way to help your community's local economy. To find your local food co-op, click here.


    WHAT YOU CAN DO LOCALLY: I want to highlight some ways you can be more involved locally in the progressive movement. There are lots of good organizations that you can connect with both for good socializing and for political action. Here are a handful. All of them have MANY local chapters. Look up what is in your area.

    Living Liberally: Political action through social interaction...includes Drinking Liberally, Eating Liberally, Reading Liberally, Laughing Liberally and Screening Liberally. Something for everyone. Nonpartisan, very progressive.

    Democracy for America: The grassroots progressive organization founded by Howard Dean, because Democracy is NOT a spectator sport. Democratic activism at its best.

    Coffee Party: Wake Up and Stand Up. The progressive (and sane!) answer to the Teabaggers. The Coffee Party is a democracy movement that began on Facebook, powered by volunteers and small donations from every-day Americans. Nonpartisan, moderate/progressive.

    Native Vote: a national non-partisan effort to mobilize the American Indian and Alaska Native vote. Nonpartisan, moderate.

    AFL-CIO: America's Union movement, now fighting back thanks to right wing Republican attacks on America's working and middle classes. Nonpartisan, moderate.

    National Association for the Advancement of Colored People: The vision of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People is to ensure a society in which all individuals have equal rights without discrimination based on race. Nonpartisan, moderate.


    Some other organizations: more national and not necessarily with many local chapters, but worth getting involved with.

    Asian Pacific Americans for Progress (APAP): APAP is a national network of progressive Asian Americans and friends. Our goals are to bring progressive values to the community and to organize for electoral empowerment. Nonpartisan, very progressive.

    Cesar E. Chavez Foundation: Cesar's dream for a better and more just world has guided the Foundation's vision. Through our programming we strive to empower individuals so that they may fully realize their inherent and unlimited potential to make a difference in their own lives, in their communities, and in the world as a whole. Nonpartisan, moderate.


    I will try to add more as I go along. Let me know if you have any suggestions.


    FROM MOVEON.ORG:

    Stop IRS Audits of Rape Survivors!

    We Are Being Lied To:



    America Falls Behind With That Whole 'Equality For Women' Thing


    NEW YORK FOCUS:

    Great News if they follow through: NY Dems push for single-payer health care

    Brooklyn Primary Election 2011: Second Round of Endorsements

    Child Care Advocates Respond to Administration for Children’s Services (ACS) Hearing

    A Fair Tax on millionaires

    NYC Comptroller John Liu: High School Progress Reports Don't Measure Progress

    NYC Comptroller John C. Liu on Wal-mart


    NEW JERSEY FOCUS:

    Democrats Lautenberg, Menendez & Pallone Speak Out Against Christie Medicaid Failure

    Thousands of NJ-7 Seniors at Risk Under Greedy Oil Party Plan

    Gov. Christie’s Taxpayer Funded Chopper Joyride

    Listen to Blue Jersey Radio Here!


    MICHIGAN FOCUS:

    More Michigan Republicans facing recalls - tally now stands at 20...to help this effort, contact Heartland Revolution

    Your Drinking Water Could be in Danger: Michigan EFM outsources H2O treatment to co. facing 26 felony Clean Water Act violations

    Billionaire Koch Brothers-backed group's fake eviction notices rile up Detroit


    VIRGINIA FOCUS

    Republican Redistribution of the Wealth...to the Billionaires: Welfare for the Wealthiest

    More Republican Hypocrisy: The staggering hypocrisy of Eric Cantor...More on Cantor: Eric Cantor embarrasses Virginia (again)

    Augusta Farmers irate over 4H cuts

    How are Those Bush Tax Cuts Working Out for Ya?


    MINNESOTA FOCUS:

    Billionaire Tax Increases or Bankruptcy- That's the Real US Choice

    Government Regulation Works: Stiff Rules Significantly Reduce Tarmac Delays

    Minnesota’s Choice: Natural Gas or Wind?


    CALIFORNIA FOCUS:

    First Full Draft of Redistricting Maps Emerge Today

    Boycotts, letter writing and calling companies really can make a difference: After three week "Drop Fox" campaign, Orbitz agrees to review advertising policy on Fox News Channel...for more info, visit DropFox.org

    Green California: Working Together to Win Legislative Victories For The Environment

    SB 104: Providing Farm Workers a 75-Year-Old Protection

    Tustin, CA Focus: Amante Recall Petition Approved! Sign Those Petitions...More here: http://recallamante.org/


    FLORIDA FOCUS:

    Computer Program to Rig Elections?...I should note it seems Republican election fraud has almost certainly happened in Georgia as well. Details here and here.

    US Century Bank: time to stop the madness

    Police arrest 5 more activists for feeding homeless

    Is Rick Scott, Turning Florida into a Totalitarian State?


    ILLINOIS FOCUS:

    IL Pensions: Unions Win Battle

    President Obama Needs Your Help in the 49th Ward!

    False equivalency watch: Conservative Media whining about perfectly reasonable Illinois redistricting

    I am VERY happy to hear this: Businessman and scientist Bill Foster announced his campaign to return to Congress in the Illinois’ 11th Congressional District that contains Aurora, Joliet, Lisle, Montgomery and Naperville.


    IOWA FOCUS:

    Iowa Democratic Party Chair Sue Dvorsky: Vote NO On Destructive Greedy Oil Party Omnibus Budget Bill

    Americans should know where their fuel comes from, says Iowa Congressman Braley and General Wesley Clark

    Ideology and Iowa Food Prices


    KEEP UP THE ACTIVISM!

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