Skip to main content

Tidbits - Dec. 5, 2019 - Reader Comments: Economy Not Fine, Half Work Low-Wage Jobs; Reparations; Chicago Teachers Strike Lessons; UAW GM Strike Was Significant; Resources: Bullies in Blue; Multicultural Children's Books; "I Am Troy Davis"; more

Reader Comments: Economy Not Fine, Half Work Low-Wage Jobs; Reparations; Centrist Dems; Work at Amazon; Chicago Teachers Strike Lessons; UAW GM Strike Was Significant; Resources: Bullies in Blue; Multicultural Children's Books; "I Am Troy Davis"....

printer friendly  
Tidbits - Reader Comments, Resources, Announcements AND cartoons - Dec. 5, 2019, Portside

Re: 'Everything Is Not Fine': Nobel Economist Calls on Humanity to End Obsession With GDP (James Vokac; Joe Maizlish)
Re: Almost Half of All Americans Work in Low-Wage Jobs (Kenneth Sullivan; Domingo Soto)
The Three Wise Guys  --  cartoon by Mike Luckovich
Re: Ilhan Omar Asks for Restorative Justice for the Man Who Threatened Her Life (Deborah Gerson)
Re: New Poll: Billionaire Tax Is Really Popular (Claire O'Connor)
Re: Nancy Pelosi Pushes the House to Pass USMCA, but Neglects a Bill With Broad Support to Strengthen Unions (Leonard Polletta; Janet Bayer)
Reflecting on Immigration (Arlene Halfon)
Re: Ruthless Quotas at Amazon Are Maiming Employees (Joe Grogan)
Re: The Chicago Teachers Strike Was a Lesson in 21st-Century Organizing (Frank Joyce)
Re: The Army Built to Fight ‘Medicare for All’ (William Leffingwell)
Where we care about corruption (and where we don’t)  --  cartoon by Joel Pett
Re: Remember the Oath of the Elbe (Leonard J. Lehrman)

Resources:

Bullies in Blue: The Problem with School Policing [Infographic] (ACLU)
EPI Workshop Series Explores Racial and Economic Justice Issues (Economic Policy Institute)
40+ Multicultural Children's Books About Christmas & Kwanzaa (Colours of Us)

Announcements:

"I AM TROY DAVIS" - Protest Performance & Community Discussion - New York - December 8 (Donkeysaddle Projects)
See you on the dance floor! - New York - December 14 (United Students Against Sweatships (USAS)

 

Re: 'Everything Is Not Fine': Nobel Economist Calls on Humanity to End Obsession With GDP
 

see "Doughnut Economics" by Kate Raworth for a well developed alternative to GDP and guidelines to a sustainable future.

Why a Just and Sustainable Economy Looks Like a Doughnut

This is the real-world economy for a living Earth that we must learn to structure and manage to provide a safe space for humanity

James Vokac

     =====

Sometimes the things that count the most are the things that are most difficult to count.

Joe Maizlish,
Los Angeles

 

Re: Almost Half of All Americans Work in Low-Wage Jobs

(posting on Portside Labor)
 

Wage slavery in the U.S.A.

Kenneth Sullivan
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

     =====

And that is in the continental USA, imagine in Puerto Rico which depends on 80% of goods imported from USA. Wages here in Puerto Rico are the lowest of any incorporated state, even though we're citizens and a Commonwealth of the US for over a century: We are not treated fairly! Puerto Ricans matter!

Domingo Soto
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

 

The Three Wise Guys  --  cartoon by Mike Luckovich
 

Mike Luckovich
December 4, 2019
Atlanta Journal-Constitution

 

Re: Ilhan Omar Asks for Restorative Justice for the Man Who Threatened Her Life
 

A moving response to the violent threat.
May she be an example, a step in the path we need.

Deborah Gerson

 

Re: New Poll: Billionaire Tax Is Really Popular
 

Billionaires should be required to may restitution to the total 99%. Reparations first for decedents of enslaved people, second for all descendents of Native and Indigenous people who's land and resources were stolen and finally for everyone who is not a millionaire or billionaire. Proposed form of reparations.

For decedents of enslaved people. Give all income tax on income below $50,000 per year per person

For decedents of Native and Indigenous people: Return to terms of all treaties

For the rest of us: Free college for life, Free universal, single payer health care, repair infrastructure and public education to match the best in the world.

A 2 % tax is no where near what they owe us for the devastated environment, wasted lives and fractured communities. The cost we have been paying for their greed.

Claire O'Connor

 

Re: Nancy Pelosi Pushes the House to Pass USMCA, but Neglects a Bill With Broad Support to Strengthen Unions
 

And on issues that matter to workers the Democrats are stalling!

Leonard Polletta
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

     =====

Centrists couldn't care less about our struggles.

Janet Bayer
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

 

Reflecting on Immigration
 

I would like to find a word in any Native American Language that is the equivalent of "catastrophe" or "Nakba" to "commemorate" on the day many people "celebrate" "Thanksgiving." 

Arlene Halfon 

 

Re: Ruthless Quotas at Amazon Are Maiming Employees

(posting on Portside Labor)
 

Thank you for this information that reveals the "Beauty of Work" at Amazon. This is another example of the use of technology to enhance production to the detriment of people.  I am sharing this info with some politicians in my community so that when various  additional warehouses are proposed here, they will know what some of the implications are for people.

Joe Grogan/Bolton,
Ontario-Canada

 

Re: The Chicago Teachers Strike Was a Lesson in 21st-Century Organizing
 

Apologies for the length, but please consider the following comment to The Chicago Teachers Strike Was a Lesson in 21st-Century Organizing by Sarah Jaffee. Thanks to Sarah Jaffee for shining the light on the Chicago Teachers Union. For those interested in trying to build a labor movement for the present and the future there is much to be learned from the CTU and the article. 

With regard to the UAW though I think her perspective is somewhat off kilter. Yes, is entirely possible that the UAW is so hell-bent on overcoming every obstacle between it and further ignominious decline that little can be done. But it doesn’t have to be that way. The General Motors strike was encouraging. It’s true that disgraced former President Gary Jones might have welcomed the strike as a distraction from his own corruption problems. And it’s true that the UAW is already weakened to point that the settlement leaned more status quo than breakthrough. Still, that’s not the whole story. It certainly was not Gary Jones’s strike. It belonged to the members. As such, it was one of the more inspiring rank and file actions in the history of U.S. organized labor. 

Based on conversations I had marching on the GM Local 22 picket line on several occasions I saw many signs of hope. (Disclosure: I am a member of UAW Local 1981. It’s the fourth UAW local I have belonged to going back to the 1970’s. I was also the Director of the UAW Communications Department from 1990 to 2002.) Broadly speaking, I found older top tier wage members who believed they were striking on behalf of younger, lower paid workers. They were joined by younger workers who felt they were striking not only for themselves but also for the idea of the visionary social justice union the UAW once was. 

And in fact some gains for younger and lower-tier workers were achieved. This is more meaningful than it might seem for several reasons. Among other things, it represented a reversal of a long standing bargaining priority that favored retirees. Beyond the GM strike, there are current national and local leaders who are calling for reform. The point is this. The membership of the union, all of it, not just the auto sector, represents a significant potential force from which to build UAW 2.0, a union for the needs of today’s workers, not those of the 20th century. Make no mistake about it, the appalling culture of corruption is the symptom, not the disease. It is evidence of how seriously the UAW has lost its way. The disease includes decades of nepotism; devotion to a code of silence; top down sexist, racist one-party rule and an obsolete economic/political analysis. Making the UAW clean again is necessary but not even close to sufficient. Far deeper change is needed. New partnerships, alliances and leadership are essential. Hard to accomplish? Sure, but so was founding UAW 1.0.

Frank Joyce

 

Re: The Army Built to Fight ‘Medicare for All’
 

Medicare for All is not the enemy. We have to have a good transition to something like that, minus the campaign slogans.

William Leffingwell
Posted on Portside's Facebook page

Where we care about corruption (and where we don’t)  --  cartoon by Joel Pett

Joel Pett
November 26, 2019
Lexington Herald-Leader (KY)

[Four-time Pulitzer finalist and 2000 Pulitzer prize winner Joel Pett has been at the Lexington Herald-Leader since 1984. His sharp-edged political cartoons have appeared in publications worldwide, including the Washington Post, New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Times of London, USA Today and the Katmandu Times.]

 

Re: Remember the Oath of the Elbe
 

I was there, in Torgau, April 25, 1985, commemorating the 40th anniversary of that meeting on the Elbe.

Marc Blitzstein had written a song about it, as part of his American-Soviet friendship musical, GOLOOPCHIK.

At that meeting, it seemed like an end to the Cold War could be possible, and of course, 4 1/2 years later it was.

Only now we have to stop it from starting again, somehow.

Leonard J. Lehrman

 

Bullies in Blue: The Problem with School Policing [Infographic]
 

Over the past 50 years, our schools have become sites of increased criminalization of young people—a disturbing fact that is even truer for poor Black and Latino communities. Today, police officers assigned to patrol schools can legally use physical force on students, arrest and handcuff them, and bring the full weight of the criminal justice system to bear on kids who are simply misbehaving. The primary role of police in schools is to enforce criminal laws, and virtually every violation of a school rule can be considered a criminal act if viewed through this police-first lens. Though these police are often referred to as “school resource officers,” their legal power and attending actions reveal that this designation only serves to mask that their presence has transformed schools into another site of concentrated policing. Such policing marks the start of the school-to-prison pipeline—the entry point to the criminal justice system for too many kids—and fuels mass incarceration.

Related Issues

DOWNLOAD INFOGRAPHIC

ACLU  
125 Broad Street, 18th Floor
New York NY 10004

212-549-2500
 

 

EPI Workshop Series Explores Racial and Economic Justice Issues
 


Patrice Kunesh, Director of the Center for Indian Country Development (CICD), speaking at EPI's PREE workshop. 

EPI’s Program on Race, Ethnicity and the Economy (PREE), in partnership with the Groundwork Collaborative and the Center for Popular Democracy, is hosting a series of workshops to cultivate constructive engagement on issues related to racial and economic justice among Washington, D.C.-based policy analysts, advocates, and researchers. At the most recent of these workshops, Patrice Kunesh, director of the Center for Indian Country Development (CICD) at the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, talked about how the social and economic histories of Native communities in the U.S. relate to contemporary economic, social, and political issues affecting those communities. Participation in the workshop series is by invitation only, but recordings of the sessions will be available online. Watch past PREE workshops »

Share the workshop series:

EPI workshop series explores racial and economic justice issues

Economic Policy Institute
1225 Eye St. NW, Suite 600
Washington, DC 20005
Phone: 202-775-8810 • epi@epi.org

 

40+ Multicultural Children's Books About Christmas & Kwanzaa
 

This year the holiday season really sneaked up on us! Not too late to share some of our Christmas and Kwanzaa books though!

24 Multicultural Children's Books About Christmas

Top 10 Children's Books About Kwanzaa

Colours of Us

 

"I AM TROY DAVIS" - Protest Performance & Community Discussion - New York - December 8
 

For the first time in 16 years, four federal executions are scheduled to take place Monday, December 9th. To protest these executions, next Sunday, December 8th at 3:00PM EST, the story of Troy Davis will be performed at the Rattlestick Theatre in New York City by people who have been directly impacted by the death penalty, mass incarceration, state and racial violence. I Am Troy Davis (by Phil Montgomery, based on the book by Jen Marlowe and Martina Davis-Correia with Troy Davis) tells the story of Troy Davis, an innocent man executed in Georgia in 2011. Check out the performance via livestream: www.donkeysaddle.org
 
Donkeysaddle Projects is producing I Am Troy Davis in partnership with Amnesty International USA, Blackbird, Death Penalty Action, the Jordan Davis Foundation, Legal Defense Fund,  the Mamie Till Mobley Memorial Foundation, the People’s Forum, Rattlestick Playwrights Theatre, and Witness to Innocence. The performance draws connections between capital punishment and wider systems of state and racial violence and will be followed by a community discussion with the family members of those who have been impacted.

Sunday, December 8, 2019

3:00 PM – 5:00 PM EST

Rattlestick Playwrights Theater*
224 Waverly Place
New York, NY 10014

View Map
*NOTE: Rattlestick Theatre is not an ADA facility

Suggested donation: $15/ticket

Ticket WAITLIST 

I AM TROY DAVIS

By Phillip Montgomery, based on the book by Jen Marlowe and Martina Davis-Correia with Troy Anthony Davis

Suggested donation: $15/ticket

WATCH THE LIVESTREAM AT www.donkeysaddle.org!!!!

A staged reading of I Am Troy Davis will be performed in NYC on Dec 8 to protest the death penalty. Troy was an innocent man on Georgia’s death row, who was executed in 2011. I Am Troy Davis takes us inside a violent criminal justice system where life and death hang in the balance. It is also a testament to the power of love and resilience of family. The performers are all death row survivors, family members of death row prisoners and wrongfully convicted people, family members of those killed by police and racist violence—those most impacted.

PERFORMERS

  • Airickca Gordon-Taylor (cousin of Emmett Till, lynched in Mississippi in 1955)

  • Aisha Salaam-Malone (sister of Yusef Salaam, from the Central Park 5 case)

  • Akeem Browder (brother of Kalief Browder, a teen held in Rikers in pre-trial solitary confinement)

  • Cephus “Uncle Bobby” Johnson (uncle of Oscar Grant, killed by BART police in 2009)

  • Delia Perez Meyer (sister of Louis Castro Perez, on TX death row with an innocence case)

  • Eric Taylor (actor-activist)

  • Gwenn Carr (mother of Eric Garner, killed by NYPD in 2014)

  • Lawrence Hayes (former death row prisoner in NY State)

  • Lee Wengraf (organizer and author)

  • Phyllis Prentice (married to death row exonoree Shujaa Graham)

  • Ron Davis (father of Jordan Davis, a 17-year-old shot and killed in 2012 in Jacksonville, FL)

  • Sabrina Butler (exonerated from MS death row)

  • Sera-Lys McArthur (actor-activist)

  • Shujaa Graham (exonerated from CA death row)

  • Yvette Allen (sister of Billie Allen, an artist on federal death row with an innocence case.)

"I AM TROY DAVIS" will feature the artwork of Billie Allen who is currently on federal death row with an innocence case. If you are unable to attend the performance in person, check it out via livestream generously provided by Spark Street Digital on Donkeysaddle Project's homepage: www.donkeysaddle.org

Partner organizations:

Donkeysaddle Projects is producing the I Am Troy Davis event in partnership with Amnesty International USA, Blackbird, Death Penalty Action, the Jordan Davis Foundation, Legal Defense Fund, Love Not Blood Campaign, the Mamie Till Mobley Memorial Foundation, the People’s Forum, Rattlestick Playwrights Theatre, Sankofa, and Witness to Innocence.

This project has provided transportation, accommodations, and an honorarium for each participant and is still $6,000 away from its fundraising goal. Please help us reach it by donating here.

Please help us spread the word by sharing through your networks and social media using #IATD #IAMTROYDAVIS

 

See you on the dance floor! - New York - December 14
 


 

USAS "Party Like It's 1997" RSVP

Please join us on Saturday December 14, 2019 at 8pm at LiUNA’s rooftop space (905 16th St N.W.) for a benefit in support of United Students Against Sweatshops (USAS). www.usas.org

This isn’t your typical labor movement fundraiser, it’s a dance party! “Party Like It’s 1997” is a cross-generational space to gather folks from across the labor movement to let loose and dance the night away to 90's tunes and classic hits.

Light appetizers are provided and drink tickets will be available for purchase to use at the bar.

For more information email staff@usas.org

Door Entry Ticket Designations:
College Students: $10
Rank & File Workers: $20
Union/Org Staffers: $30
Union/Org Leadership: $40
(Preferred payment: cash, check, Venmo)

If your union or organization would like to purchase a block of tickets in advance please email staff@usas.org. The advance purchase block rate amounts to $25 per person, regardless of designation. Checks can be made out to “Alliance for Global Justice-USAS” and mailed to USAS at 1155 Connecticut Ave NW Suite 500 Washington, DC, 20036. More information including an invitation letter for unions/orgs: https://usas.org/2019/11/12/usasdance/

United Students Against Sweatshops (USAS, pronounced 'you-sas')
1155 Connecticut Avenue NW 
Suite 500 
Washington, DC 20036