Robert Borosage

The Stunning Disappearance of Candidate Trump

Donald Trump’s totemic first 100 days in office have been greeted with brutal reviews. Ironically, the most positive comments involve the neck-snapping series of flip-flops Trump has sprung on signature populist issues. The chattering classes have greeted these with deep sighs of relief. In their view, the “axis of adults,” as neo-conservative Max Boot puts it, has taken control. The marauding Rasputin, Steve Bannon, has been rebuked. The “corrupt political establishment” that Trump railed against has taken hold. Rather than relief, this should worry anyone concerned about the future of the country. And Trump’s casual shedding of his agenda makes a fundamental reassessment among Democrats all the more imperative. Let’s quickly review the promises Trump abandoned.

Continue Reading...
Leo Gerard

The Price for Killing Workers Must be Prison for CEOs

Every 12 days, a member of my union, the United Steelworkers (USW), or one of their non-union co-workers, is killed on the job. Every 12 days. And it’s been that way for years. These are horrible deaths. Workers are crushed by massive machinery. They drown in vats of chemicals. They’re poisoned by toxic gas, burned by molten metal. The company pays a meaningless fine. Nothing changes. And another worker is killed 11 days later. Of course, it’s not just members of the USW. Nationally, at all workplaces, one employee is killed on the job every other hour. Twelve a day. These are not all accidents. Too many are foreseeable, preventable, avoidable tragedies. With the approach of April 28, Workers Memorial Day 2017, the USW is seeking in America what workers in Canada have to prevent these deaths.

Continue Reading...
Dave Johnson

Save Our Financial Protections; Save the CFPB

Wall Street’s business model is fraud. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) was created to fight fraud. So naturally, Wall Street and Republicans in Congress are trying to kill the CFPB as fast as they can. The CFPB came into existence after the public learned about the Wall Street frauds that led to the near-collapse of the financial system in 2008. Financial firms were found to have been scamming, lying, defrauding, manipulating and generally tricking people into signing up for things that did little more than drain their funds. And making Wall Street types really, really rich. In some cases, financial firms were draining people’s funds even though they hadn’t signed up for it. A recent example of the work of the CFPB was nailing Wells Fargo for fraudulently opening accounts for customers, then charging them fees for the accounts.

Continue Reading...
Tim Wilkins

Meet the Leaders of the New Grassroots Resistance

They came from communities across the country to Washington, D.C. to share stories, find inspirations, and plan for the future – together. Members of People Organized for Westside Renewal (POWER) in Los Angeles, CA These are the more than twelve hundred who gathered for “Rise Up!” – the founding convention of People’s Action and the People’s Action Institute, held this week in Washington, D.C. They are a truly inspiring group, of every age and background. We’ll share many of their stories in coming weeks, and wanted to start by introducing a few of these rising leaders. People’s Action was created through the fusion of five organizations to create a national network of more than a million people in 30 states, all working to address key concerns in their local communities.

Continue Reading...
People's Action

Rise Up Platform: From Protest to Power

The following platform was introduced at the Rise Up: From Protest to Power founding convention of People’s Action held in Washington DC, April 23-25, 2017. At the event, seventy-two grassroots activists pledged to run for office guided by the principles in the platform and committed to be held accountable to their communities and people’s organizations. In this time of crisis, we rise up. We rise up for people and planet. For a government that protects the right of all people to thrive. For a society where every person has a say in our collective future. We are under attack – as poor and working people, as immigrants and refugees, as women, LGBTQ people, Muslims, as indigenous nations, and as people of color. We are under attack by growing corporate power that takes from our families and communities. But we refuse to be defined by these attacks.

Continue Reading...
Dave Johnson

Tax Cuts Defund the Very Things That Boost the Economy

After eight years of complaining about “Obama deficits,” Republicans are proposing huge, dramatic, unprecedented tax cuts, especially for corporations. President Trump wants the corporate tax rate cut from 35 percent down to 15, denying the government $2 trillion of revenue over the next decade. He is also proposing dramatic cuts to personal income tax cuts that will especially benefit billionaires like him. Republicans call corporate tax cuts “pro-growth,” saying they will give the economy a boost.

Continue Reading...
LeeAnn Hall

Hometowns Rising To Win Health Care For All

Back in January, a victory on health care seemed a long way away. Today, we’re still in a big fight to protect the health care that we need and that everyone deserves. It’s not just the Affordable Care Act that they’re going after. The right wing is going after Medicaid, Medicare, the Indian Health Service, veterans’ health services, and more. In March, we stopped the first vote on repealing our health care. It was a huge victory. Because of you and your sharp organizing, we lit a wildfire of resistance. We spoke up in districts where no one expected people to fight for health care for all. In February, during the congressional recess, we did 89 actions, 75 percent of them in Republican districts. Together, we drove a wedge right through the Republicans and deepened the division in the party, making the March vote impossible for them.

Continue Reading...
Tim Wilkins

Watch Rep. Keith Ellison in Healthcare Town Hall

Watch the People’s Action Hometown Rising Town Hall, as Rep. Keith Ellison and other champions tell our stories and share our strategy for taking on new dangers to our health care from GOP budget and tax proposals. People’s Action, our affiliates and allies helped light a firestorm in our hometowns to save our health care. Your stories, actions and relentless pressure deep in districts, drove a wedge in the Republican party and delivered a major blow to the new administration. Our Hometown Rising Town Hall with congressional champions celebrates our leaders, tell our stories and share our strategy for taking on new dangers to our health care from GOP budget and tax proposals.

Continue Reading...
Jacqueline Bediako

Language Access for African Immigrants: A Step in the Right Direction

The contributions made by African immigrants are nationally and internationally relevant. From food to architecture to music and sport, African immigrants not only enrich existing communities, but add their energy  and creativity to help emerging communities prosper.  One only has to look at Africans working in areas like “Little Ethiopia” in Washington D.C., St. Paul in Minnesota or “Little Senegal” in New York City’s Harlem to see their impact. Representing 54 countries, African immigrants are one of the fastest growing immigrant communities in New York City. According to the most recent Census data, there are 146,000 African-born New Yorkers. African immigrants to the U.S. are more likely to settle in the South (39 percent) or the Northeast (25 percent), than in the Midwest (18 percent) or West (17 percent).

Continue Reading...
Mark Trahant

Brace for Government Shutdown as Republicans Face Impossible Tasks

Can President Donald J. Trump and the Republicans actually govern? As we near the 100th day mark the answer has been a loud “no.” So far. This week the Congress and the president will once again try for wins to fund the government, repeal the Affordable Care Act, extra money for Defense, and to construct a wall on the southern border. A nearly impossible order. The House of Representatives does not have a governing coalition. There remains, essentially, three parties: Republicans, Democrats, and the Freedom Caucus. Two of these three groups must work together in order to pass any legislation. And to complicate the politics even more, many of the Republican members are already worried about their own re-election, so they might not support their own party’s leaders. Especially if that deal is sanctioned by the Freedom Caucus.

Continue Reading...
Libero Della Piana

Bernie Sanders Inspires Candidates to Run on Rise Up Platform

“Let me begin by thanking the People’s Action network for making the political revolution,” U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders told a raucous afternoon crowd in Washington, D.C. at “Rise Up: From People to Power,” the founding convention of People’s Action, on Monday. “This is what the revolution looks like. You are what the revolution looks like!” “When people begin to stand up and fight back,” said Sanders, “when people begin to to understand that they have the power – if they choose to exercise that power – that is what the political revolution is about.” Photo credit: People’s Action / Tim Wilkins Crowded on the stage behind Sanders stood 72 grassroots community leaders from across the United States, who pledged to run for office on the progressive Rise Up Platform developed by People’s Action and its member organizations.

Continue Reading...
George Goehl

Transforming The Possible Through Radical Imagination

This is the text of opening remarks delivered Sunday evening at the People’s Action founding convention in Washington, DC – “Rise Up: From Protest to Power.” Photo credit: People’s Action David pulled a stone from his bag and slung it. And hit Goliath on the head. And he fell to the ground. We are gathered here tonight, founding a new organization: People’s Action. And we are in a David and Goliath battle. Donald Trump is in the White House. Greed and hate run our federal government. The right controls dozens of statehouses from coast to coast. Most importantly – the communities that are already suffering the most are right in the crosshairs of what they want to do next. And Saul offered to David a sword and a shield. But instead, David reached into the stream and pulled out five smooth stones.

Continue Reading...
Michael Winship

At Sea With Captain ‘Wrong Way’ Trump

Baby boomers like me fondly remember the Rocky and Bullwinkle cartoons of childhood (and adulthood, for that matter — in their grown-up jokes and cultural references they presaged The Simpsons by a good 25 years and are still pretty hilarious). You may particularly recall one Rocky and Bullwinkle character, Capt. Peter “Wrong Way” Peachfuzz, an addled mariner so spectacular in his incompetence that even his toy boats sank in the bathtub. At one point, Peachfuzz managed to steer his ship into New York’s financial district — and I mean into, so much so that it was given the permanent address of 17 ½ Wall Street. Now at the helm of an investment firm, his board of directors wanted to get Capt. Peachfuzz as far away as possible and found him a job counting penguin eggs in Antarctica.

Continue Reading...
Robert Borosage

Obama From the Rearview Mirror

Barack Obama’s stature will grow ever more impressive in the rearview mirror. We already miss his dignity, his grace, and his intelligence. His presidency was largely a competent, no-drama, scandal-free administration, and it will only gain in esteem as we gag on a presidency rotting, like a fish, from the head down. Donald Trump may be intent on repealing everything Obama accomplished, but he will inevitably ennoble him in the process. Photo credit: Pete Souza / White House Meanwhile, the predictable flood of Obama retrospectives has begun filling magazine racks and libraries. In his last months in office, Obama himself devoted no small amount of time making his case in interviews and in an extended farewell tour. A presidential memoir is in the works.

Continue Reading...
Isaiah J. Poole

Grassroots Candidates Will “Rise Up” To Electorialize The Resistance

Here’s something that can’t be dismissed with a dismissive Donald Trump tweet: An electoral wave is building that seriously threatens the stranglehold that Republicans have on electoral power around the country. It showed itself this week when an unknown, young documentary filmmaker and former congressional staffer nearly won a Georgia congressional special election as a Democrat in a district that had been deeply Republican for decades. It will be amplified on Monday when, according to People’s Action co-director George Goehl, 50 grassroots organizers and activists pledge during the organization’s inaugural convention in Washington to run for political office in 2017, 2018 and 2020. Goehl made that announcement during a briefing with progressive media writers and producers on Thursday.

Continue Reading...
Dave Johnson

Polls: People Don’t Know Trump’s Infrastructure Plan Is a Scam

Polls show that the public likes President Trump’s plan to spend $1 trillion on infrastructure. That’s because they think he actually plans to spend $1 trillion on infrastructure. He doesn’t. Not hardly. Not by a long shot. In fact… Infrastructure Spending Is Popular Polls show the public really likes it when Trump says he plans to spend $1 trillion on infrastructure. Gallup: Trump Family Leave, Infrastructure Proposals Widely Popular, Americans are far more likely to agree than disagree with President Donald Trump’s proposals to require companies to provide family leave for parents of a newborn and to spend $1 trillion on infrastructure.

Continue Reading...
Jeff Bryant

Early Signs Betsy DeVos Will Not Support Civil Rights

It was just an Easter holiday party. But it seemed like an occasion that could give the Trump White House an easy opportunity to show racial inclusiveness. But as the Daily News reports, when the White House staged its first annual Easter Egg Roll, it forgot to invite local school children. News outlets aligned to the Democratic Party, such as Occupy Democrats and Share Blue, were quick to note that while school children in the surrounding neighborhoods are mostly black, the event attendees were predominantly white – including “an all-white band on hand to perform slavery-era spirituals and soul music.” The Daily News reporter attributes the whitewashing of the Easter crowd at the White House to a problem with “basic logistics,” but anyone paying attention knows all too well there’s a white people problem endemic to the Trump administration.

Continue Reading...
Libero Della Piana

This Earth Day, Defeating Trump is Job One

This Earth Day, we face a climate threat greater than ever before. And he lives in the White House. On the campaign trail, Donald Trump consistently mocked climate science and promised to gut policies protecting our communities, natural resources and the environment. He called climate change “a hoax” invented by the Chinese government. In and out of office, Trump has been consistently at odds with scientific evidence and consensus on climate change. He is also at odds with public opinion, which increasingly acknowledges and understands the threat of global climate crisis. Despite its failures to advance a legislative agenda, the Trump Administration has successfully used executive orders, rule changes in the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and other agencies, and the use of the Congressional Review Act to undo crucial protections of air, water and the environment.

Continue Reading...
Chuck Collins

Congrats, Graduates! Here’s Your Diploma and Debt

It’s that time of year again. Flowers are flowering, spring is springing, and across the country college graduates are graduating with their newly awarded degrees held high. Photo credit: Light Brigading / Flickr Also high is the mountain of student debt most of these recent graduates are taking on. All told, 44 million Americans now owe student debt — including 7 in 10 graduating seniors last year, who owe an average of $37,000. If you’re not one of those tens of millions of people, you might’ve missed how out of control student debt has become. Total student debt is approaching $1.4 trillion, surpassing auto loans and credit card debt. Between job searches and apartment hunting, post-graduate life is already stressful — and student debt makes it worse. The average monthly payment for borrowers in their 20s is $351.

Continue Reading...
1 2 3 556