.@NYTimes digital access is being made free to all highschoolers thru Sept 2021
In a brilliant New Yorker article, Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor lays out the steps by which the abandonment of middle and poor Americans by both US political parties led to society’s present collapse. Although the coronavirus was the immediate trigger, the erosion of society’s wellbeing began way back in 1969. Collapse was an occurrence primed to happen at some point, and now just happened to be the time.
For 50 years, since 1979, national leaders increasingly backed away from their obligation to care for vulnerable and working class Americans. As they did, financial instability increased and the chance to acquire wealth became much more limited. Those were the perfect conditions for the meltdown known as American life in the days of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Millions were driven into a state of deprivation that made happy lives impossible. And over time, the country destabilized economically. Students were still paying back college loans into their golden years. Aspiring homeowners could not afford mortgages. Urban residents live with air quality so poor that one in four has asthma and health concerns affect all areas of family’s lives. Poor health affects the’ ability to earn adequate incomes and keep up with the demands of digital life.
For years, the United States has gotten away with persistently chipping away at its weak welfare state by hiding or demonizing the populations most dependent on it. The poor are relegated as socially dysfunctional and inept, unable to cash in on the riches of American society ... The debate over the role of government in addressing income inequality, housing insecurity, debt accumulation, and health care continues, now against the grim backdrop of the raging coronavirus. It is difficult to articulate the speed with which the U.S. and, indeed, the world, has descended into an existential crisis.
The grandson of a survivor of the Tulsa massacre is a senior program manager at the National Museum of African American History and Culture, where now resides the manuscript detailing the Tulsa, Oklahoma massacre and its impact on Black Wall Street residents. It is a first person account written by attorney Buck Colbert Franklin (1879-1960), who survived the massacre although his law practice was burned to the ground.“I could see planes circling in mid-air. They grew in number and hummed, darted and dipped low. I could hear something like hail falling upon the top of my office building. Down East Archer, I saw the old Mid-Way hotel on fire, burning from its top, and then another and another and another building began to burn from their top,” he wrote.
It’s awe-inspiring and terrifying to know how much Google and Facebook know about us: where we go, what time we go to the gym, what you’ve searched, what searches you’ve deleted, what apps you use, what you and your friends talk about, and more. Dylan Curran, writing in The Guardian, says,
They can access your webcam and microphone
The data they collect includes tracking where you are, what applications you have installed, when you use them, what you use them for, access to your webcam and microphone at any time, your contacts, your emails, your calendar, your call history, the messages you send and receive, the files you download, the games you play, your photos and videos, your music, your search history, your browsing history, even what radio stations you listen to.
The focus of the Economic Policy Institute’s (EPI) report issued on January 12, 2018 is in its name: Ten actions that hurt workers during Trump’s first year: How Trump and Congress further rigged the economy in favor of the wealthy
See the article for facts about how workers are affected by each action on this list:
Now we have reached the part of the show where everyone begins talking about who they plan to “cut off” and how they plan to be “new” and how everything will just be different. Look out, here comes a reality check: unless you don’t wake up tomorrow, it’ll be Monday. That’s it, Monday. And then, there will be Tuesday, Wednesday, so on and so forth. Nothing out of the ordinary will happen UNLESS you do something unordinary to provoke an unordinary event to occur. Remember, NOTHING FROM NOTHING LEAVES NOTHING. You must be willing to do something in order to get something. That’s how life works. This attitude that life owes you something must die within you before you can begin mentally preparing yourself to receive something. What have you done lately for someone other than yourself? If you have to take longer than 30 seconds to answer then you’re living in a vacuum. It’s time to step out and live in 2018. If not, this new year will begin and end just like every other year.
Here are three examples of lies the United Nations spread about Israel in 2017. The ostensible goal was to provoke hatred of Israel and Jews. But United Nations Watch is on hand, monitoring statements and correcting records in order, “to repel the darkness and light the candle of truth.”
Executive Director Hillel C. Neuer writes about the three lies:
THESE STORIES MUST BE TOLD
Sometime ago, those of us who entered political movements for change walked on our first picket line or marched in our first demonstration. At some point we got hooked on concepts like “Freedom”, “Direct Action” and “Resistance” to get rid of Jim Crow racism. Eventually we came to learn how to spend time in jail, survive police and vigilante violence; to organize poor and working class black people; to extract perks and building blocks from federal programs and build coalitions among unpredictable community groups; to fight city hall; to negotiate agreements that produced opportunities and skill development for community development; and to manage campaigns to elect black politicians.
But then one day we looked around and realized that many of our friends (and enemies) who made that journey, or similar journeys, were no longer with us….to laugh with, relive old conquests, or just tell lies. Too many have moved to places unknown, gotten sick, or passed on to the next life.
So many of our collective stories go untold.
These stories must be told, and hence the evolution of this project entitled, The North: Civil Rights and Beyond in Urban America.
Follow Mayor Cruz on Twitter
What you do when devastation hits you and there is no help in the horizon. We will make it. pic.twitter.com/Powj7UDeFe
— Carmen Yulín Cruz (@CarmenYulinCruz) October 8, 2017
Here’s the body of the Mayor’s message:
Puerto Ricans have suffered greatly in the past month. Two hurricanes devastated our homes and our electrical infrastructure leaving us without the essentials to survive: drinkable water, food and medicine. But perhaps more frustrating has been the devastating actions, time after time, by a President whose tweets, comments and actions seem to be taken out of a book on “how to add insult to injury” rather than a book on “how to help during a humanitarian crisis”. He is simply incapable of understanding the contributions, the sacrifices and the commitment to democratic values that Puerto Ricans have shown over decades. His actions are unbecoming of a leader of the free world.
Mr President, you seem to want to disregard the moral imperative that your administration has been unable to fulfill. Your replacement of the FEMA Coordinator in Puerto Rico is an admission that things are not going the way they should. Your tweets and comments just show desperation and underscore the inadequacy of your government’s response to this humanitarian crisis. It is not that you do not get it, it is that you are incapable of empathy and frankly simply cannot get the job done.
Ever since this ordeal began, San Juan has had over 300 sustained volunteers from the United States. Good, hard working people from New York, Florida, California, Texas and many others who embody the fundamental values of compassion, ingenuity and hard work that you are certainly unable to express. These men and women, most of them union workers, have literally taken care of our bodies and souls. They did not come for a photo op or to throw paper towels and insults at us. They came to help, something you seem to be unable to grasp. These volunteers have seen the horror that you continue to want to dismiss. They embody the true spirit of the American values that you dismiss with every inappropriate and derogatory action and comment.
Tweet away your hate to mask your administration’s mishandling of this humanitarian crisis. While you are amusing yourself throwing paper towels at us, your compatriots and the world are sending love and help our way. Condemn us to a slow death of non drinkable water, lack of food, lack of medicine while you keep others eager to help from reaching us since they face the impediment of the Jones Act.
I ask every American that has love, and not hate in their hearts, to stand with Puerto Rico and let this President know we WILL NOT BE LEFT TO DIE. I ask the United Nations, UNICEF and the world to stand with the people of Puerto Rico and stop the genocide that will result from the lack of appropriate action of a President that just does not get it because he has been incapable of looking in our eyes and seeing the pride that burns fiercely in our hearts and souls.
No one needs an invitation to help, to feed the hungry, to cure the sick, to give a helping hand to those in need. Simply put: HELP US. WITHOUT ROBUST and CONSISTENT HELP, WE WILL DIE.
Mr. President fulfill your moral imperative towards the people of Puerto Rico.
Carmen Yulin Cruz
Mayor of San Juan
Published Sep 24, 2017
Stand For what?!
You want me to stand for a song that continues to remind me of all the harms that have done me wrong?
Stand for what?!
For your Army that none of our sons truly belong
Stand for what?
The 100 years it took them to convince Congress to become the anthem after 40 failed attempts
Stand for what?
Your forefathers who really just Pimps.
Stand for What?
A song about War, not freedom
That’s how you want to lead them
Brainwash your people? that’s how you want to treat em
Slavemasters whips to Cops night sticks, that’s how you continue to beat em.
Stand for what
the beginning of Slavery in 1619
Or the end of those Black Marines of 1814
That’s really what the lyrics are about
They may have taken the word slave out
but they forget to remove the slave connotations from their brains and they mouth The mentality to make America Greater than your imagination is how you pout
Hating because we burned down their White House
Gave proof through the night, that its light out
For the old elitist white man thinking
Drunk off they ass with power at baseball games singing and drinking
Man stand for what?
Stand for something or fall for dumb shit!
Stand for what
To salute the Red White and Blue, on a Flag where my Colors not reflected
Stand for what
To uphold laws that were embedded to have my community negatively affected
Stand for what
Your racist systemic melodies of mind manipulating rhetoric?
Did you know the government pays Sports organizations for plays, to make people more patriotic
This MK Ultra Soul control needs to stop it
I can still love my country and hate that fucked up song about rockets, and bombs bursting air
Reminds me of Charlottesville’s vicious glares
And police shootings with no care like the dash cameras wasn’t there.
Stand for what
Monuments and statues of old slave masters
Constant reminders of our nations disasters
The Heros in Houston, the Doctors, the Poets and the Pastors.
That’s who I want to shape our greatness after
I honor and respect our men and women of service
But we’ve been taught to idolize wars without purpose
The majority of our Militaries casualties are minority soldiers
So let’s make statues of those warriors because they truly deserve it
Mt Rushmore was built by the Ku Klux Klan, so why the fuck should I have respect for those men
Damn, This is not my country and it’s not yours either.
Go back to Africa? I wish we never had to leave it
But the entire World is our neighborhood
So why do we perceive certain blocks to be bad and other blocks to be good?
Instead of glorifying the past we gotta focus on the future
Dick Gregory warned me if U speak up They probably gonna shoot ya!
But I shout for his eternal voice along with Martin, Malcolm and Marcus Garvey and
march wholeheartedly for their legacy
Because I’ll say it loud as you can see
Fuck Francis Scott Key and Robert E. Lee
They don’t represent me and neither do either of these hypocritical political parties
I am a native to the cosmic and Universal God Energy.
Even though the constitution really doesn’t apply to me
I’ll try to exercise my freedom of speech
So you can tell them you heard it from me.
Yeah I said it
Brutality, Historic Fallacies and
All war is wrong and so is that fucking song!
It’s Been way too long!
It’s time to make a change and acknowledge that your home of the brave was built on the back of a Slave.
So bowing down to a true King
Is the only way to let freedom ring
Stand for what?
I ain’t standing For Shit… except Kaepernick!
Former US Navy Admiral William H. McRaven shares sage advice with 8000 plus University of Texas, Austin class of 2014 graduates on how to change the world. The admiral’s first life lesson of ten is, “If you wanna change the world, start off by making your bed.”
The short version on why making your bed is such an important task (1:41 mins):
The full 19:26 minute speech with all ten of the admiral’s life lessons:
Bill Moyers points out, “the Census is key to the work (of) researchers and journalists,” so hobbling the Census’ data collection process will hobble the ability of independent analysts to examine the realities of American life and to tell accurate and authoritative stories about it. Furthermore, funding to serve Americans is allocated according to the composition of neighborhoods and households – and these characteristics are established through the Census.
And by the way, did you know that the U.S. Census is required in our Constitution?
Marquette University archivist William Fliss tells how census data shows the transformation of the United States from a new republic to the nation it is today.
Slate shares a short synopsis of the Census’ importance in terms of services for Americans:
The decennial census is critical to ensuring that Americans are fairly represented in Washington, since it’s used as the basis for congressional redistricting. A mishandled census could undercount poor and minority populations, putting some states and many cities at a demographic disadvantage…
The best description of the Census’ importance comes, naturally, from the Census Bureau website (at least until Trump removes it):
The U.S. Census counts every resident in the United States. It is mandated by Article I, Section 2 of the Constitution and takes place every 10 years. The data collected by the decennial census determine the number of seats each state has in the U.S. House of Representatives and is also used to distribute billions in federal funds to local communities.
The 2010 Census represented the most massive participation movement ever witnessed in our country. Approximately 74 percent of the households returned their census forms by mail; the remaining households were counted by census workers walking neighborhoods throughout the United States. National and state population totals from the 2010 Census were released on December 21, 2010. Redistricting data, which include additional state, county and local counts, will be released starting in February 2011.
“The actual enumeration shall be made within three years after the first meeting of the Congress of the United States, and within every subsequent term of 10 years, in such manner as they shall by Law direct.”
~ Article I, Section 2 of the Constitution of the United States
Gerrymandering is what has allowed elections to be skewed toward Republican control
That bit about Census data driving the way election districts are drawn and how many Congressional Representative each state gets: is actually the reason why Republicans have recently acquired increasing control over Congress even during Democratic presidencies.
Bill Moyers’ David Daley opened up discussion about the power of gerrymandering in August 2016.
For all of the misleading nonsense about “rigged elections” coming from the Trump camp this summer, we haven’t talked enough about the way our electoral map really was rigged by Republicans after the 2010 census. These tilted (gerrymandered) maps make it possible for the Republicans to govern with a supermajority in Ohio, North Carolina and Wisconsin – despite getting less votes overall.
The WaPo elaborates:
How do conservative Republicans maintain so much power in the House, even though Americans reelected a liberal president and polls show that the GOP suffers from high disapproval ratings?
Salon editor David Daley’s punchy, though overstated, new book lays the blame for Republican power in the House on partisan gerrymandering, the byzantine process through which state legislatures draw district lines to favor incumbents from one party. Challenging the claim that increased partisan polarization is a result of voters naturally sorting themselves into red and blue states, Daley argues that a group of operatives in the Republican Party did the sorting for them. The GOP poured money into an unprecedented effort to control governorships and state legislative bodies in 2010 and to then redraw congressional districts so that the party could turn the House into a firewall against the Democrats.
While the term “gerrymander” has been around since the early years of the republic, computer technology and big money have allowed governors and legislatures to perfect the process in ways that have never before been imagined, according to Daley. The same technology that allows Amazon to figure out who buys what in any home on a given block now allows party officials to do the same with elections.
Although his argument might not be as sexy as talking about how money corrupts politics or how the 24-hour news media leaves us all screaming, the success of Republican legislatures and governors at redrawing congressional districts is the reason, he says, House Republican incumbents have increased their power and don’t have to worry about any “wave” election that would shift control to the other party.
So now: Why did the Census Bureau’s director quit?
Sabotage is probably the reason Census Bureau Director John Thompson resigned today on 11 May 2017. He probably looked at the writing on the wall and understood that the Trump administration has little intention of allowing a fair, impartial and complete Census of the American people to be held this cycle. Slate share some of the ways the sabotage is being carried out:
What is our degenerate non-leader doing in this picture? Right, you guessed it – something disgusting. His hand sign consists of forming the letter W with three fingers and P with the circle of his thumb and index finger and the line that is formed by the base of his thumb.
This is a symbol for White Power. And the president of the United States makes it openly. God help us.
On May 10th, 2016 at the age of 67 activist Ramon Jimenez passed away of prostate cancer. The Harvard-trained lawyer, litigator, activist, writer, former administrative law judge, and journalist was a permanent fixture in the movement for social justice and a champion of progressive struggles. He led the fight to save Hostos Community College in the South Bronx, organized rallies against police brutality, took on South Bronx corrupt politicians and spearheaded a campaign that led to the removal of a corrupt National Puerto Rican Day Parade board to one with a more reform-oriented bent. On the electoral front this fiercely proud and apologetically Black Puerto Rican disenchanted with the Republican and Democratic duopoly was the Attorney General candidate for the Freedom Party and the Green Party
After Ramon’s passing I approached Ramon’s daughter Laila-Roman Jimenez and asked if I could create this premium for WBAI which broadcast The Jordan Journal. a program which Ramon called “one of his favorites.” I felt that Ramon’s message MUST not be forgotten, recast or de-radicalized as has become common right wing practice for progressive icons like Albizu Campos, Martin Luther King, Malcolm X, and others.
Familia, since it is rapidly approaching the one-year anniversary of his passing I once again offer this collection of “The Teachings of Ramon Jimenez” to the progressive community in its entirety free. Links will also be placed on my website howardjordan.net Some of you ordered part of this compilation as a premium on WBAI but due to internal problems at the station delivery was delayed. My sincerest apologies. This tribute is presented in two parts. First the show I did shortly after Ramon’s passing on May 20th where I interviewed Assemblyman Charles Barron, Ponce Espinal of the Ramon Jimenez Legacy Project, Laila Roman-Jimenez, Ramon’s daughter, Lucky Rivera, and Javier Nieves. Press link to listen.
The rest of the compilation of interviews spans from 2007 to 2016 and some additional tributes to Ramon. Press the link at the beginning of this letter for the total collection of nearly every interview I did with Ramon and a brief introduction of some segments. Please share this information and ask that it be included in your local library. During the coming months many will hold anniversary activities and a possible street naming to honor Ramon and I hope these recordings are informative and give you some insight into this progressive apostle of our movement. Again my thanks to all that have assisted me in this effort. Un abrazo,
More on Ramón Jimenez:
PDF Guide to the Jordan Journal’s Ramon Jimenez Tribute 5-1-17
http://bit.ly/2pETItYClick to download the collection of Jordan Journal content on Jimenez
Ramon Jimenez Facebook Page
Washington, D.C. – Senate Majority Leader Loretta Weinberg received the National Newspaper Association Open Government Award for her legislative advocacy to promote government transparency and accountability. The award was presented to the senator Thursday by NNA President Matt Paxton during the 2017 Community Newspaper Leadership Summit at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C.
“Whether at the state or national level, an attack on the media is an attack on our democracy. Particularly during these uncertain times, we have to stand in support of a free and independent press. I am committed to continuing the fight for government transparency and accountability and am honored to receive this award from the National Newspaper Association,” said Senator Weinberg (D-Bergen). “I am also dedicated to continuing the work that I’ve done over the last several years to reform the state’s open government laws to make government more accessible to the public. A strong press and transparent government are the best safeguards for truth in our state and our country.”
Senator Weinberg led the fight against legislation that would have eliminated the requirement that public notices are published in newspapers, and was successful in blocking the bill from advancing late last year. The senator has also championed reforms to New Jersey’s open government laws, the Open Public Records Act and the Open Public Meetings Act, that would update and modernize the state’s decades-old laws.
Established in 1885, the National Newspaper Association (NNA) is a not-for-profit trade association representing the owners, publishers and editors of America’s community newspapers. NNA’s mission is to protect, promote and enhance America’s community newspapers. Today, NNA’s 2,200 members make it the largest national newspaper association.
In addition to Senator Weinberg, those speaking at the event included Martin “Marty” Baron, executive editor of the Washington Post, who previously served as editor of The Boston Globe which, under his leadership, won a Pulitzer Prize for its investigation into clergy sex abuse and was the basis for the movie Spotlight.