Your presence is requested! Come out and fight for our future!

Whatever you imagine you would have done during slavery, the Holocaust, or the Civil Rights movement, DO IT NOW!

Californians are not above being fooled. Many now regret voting for Prop. 22 – which allowed predatory corporations to strip benefits from gig workers. Fossil fuel companies spent millions on the “NO on Measure A & B” campaign here in Ventura County, deceiving us into voting against our own best interests. Said Supervisor Carmen Ramirez: “We are fighting not just for ourselves but for our children and our grandchildren, all the future generations. Some day in the future, our descendants are going to say ‘what did our ancestors do? Did they do something to help us live a better life or did they condemn us to the hell on earth that we’re starting to see in India and other places where the temperatures are so hot that people cannot survive?’

We failed her.

Now, candidates are knocking on our doors, calling our phones, and mailing glossy pamphlets – pretending that they won’t strip women of their rights to abortions or contraception. (Oh, hello, Rep. Mike Garcia!) That the Affordable Care Act won’t be stripped by religious zealots of care and treatments they don’t like. That they won’t strip us of public programs like Social Security and Medicare. Or public schools, voting rights, the separation of church and state, and safety, labor, financial, education, energy, and environmental regulations. That they won’t actually hurt the most vulnerable amongst us – the poor, the immigrant, the non-White, non-Christian, non-straight, non-gender conforming.

We have been fooled before. And the stakes for democracy have never been higher. We cannot fail again.

  • Find a friend to join you, or make a new one as you knock on doors.
  • Never phone banked before? Are you a committed introvert? Doesn’t matter. We have a post for that. (https://indivisibleventura.org/phone-banking-for-the-rest-of-us/) You are going to find, with a little practice, that you are probably pretty good at it.
Continue reading “Your presence is requested! Come out and fight for our future!”

Email Newsom about state taxes on student debt relief and vetoing a bill that hurts our solar industry.

Action #1: Hey, did you know that CA is one of a handful of states that might tax those who receive student debt relief?

While the American Rescue Plan prevents President Biden’s $10k student debt relief from being considered taxable income on federal tax returns until 2025, borrowers in seven states may have to pay state income tax on it, including CA residents.

Contact: Governor Gavin Newsom: email

Minimal script: Dear Governor Newsom, I was surprised to learn that our state was one of only seven that might tax Biden’s student debt relief as additional income. Most people who’ll qualify to have their debts forgiven are low income and many have struggled for decades to make their monthly payments. They shouldn’t have to worry about paying state taxes on the amount that’s forgiven. Please publicly announce that California, which is working to keep college costs down and to increase state financial aid for students, will exempt them from this additional financial burden.

Action #2: The CA legislative session closed on Aug. 31. Now we need to play mop-up and ask Newsom to veto solar-killing bill AB 2143.

Good news first!

  • We killed SB 396 which would have allowed PG&E to cut almost any tree anywhere with no recourse and no oversight, a wasteful and ineffective method to stop wildfires.
  • We killed AB 2667, which would have harmed microgrids we need for resilience and safety in wildfires and blackouts.
  • We killed SB 1385, which would have been a PG&E scam undermining successful solar on multi-family housing programs.
  • We got the Governor to pull out the solar tax in his Diablo bill that did pass and we still need to work to stop, but we stopped the solar tax, for now. 

Now, the issue...

Continue reading “Email Newsom about state taxes on student debt relief and vetoing a bill that hurts our solar industry.”

Dark-money oligarchs will “Uberize” all of us. Tell your legislators we will not cooperate.

It’s interesting to watch GOP crowds openly roar for a White Supremacy and Christian Nationalism vision of 1950’s “Father Knows Best” America. They have no idea that the oligarchs that fund their right-wing extremism, along with captive media shills and legislators, have no intention of returning us to that era, which included a 91% tax bracket for the wealthy and a +50% tax rate on corporations. Using flag-covered zealots as cover, they intend to regress us to a time when no laws or regulations impeded their single-minded drive for profit.

(Robert Reich) “They call themselves conservatives but that’s not it, either. They don’t want to conserve what we now have. They’d rather take the country backwards – before the 1960s and 1970s, and the Environmental Protection Act, Medicare, and Medicaid; before the New Deal, and its provision for Social Security, unemployment insurance, the forty-hour workweek, and official recognition of trade unions; even before the Progressive Era, and the first national income tax, antitrust laws, and Federal Reserve. They’re not conservatives. They’re regressives. And the America they seek is the one we had in the Gilded Age of the late nineteenth century.”

And they have a bill to get started…

Action #1: We Californians were fooled into voting for Prop. 22. Don’t let this toxic anti-worker campaign go national. Educate your representatives and tell them we are watching – “NO” on H.R.8442 – Worker Flexibility and Choice Act.

Continue reading “Dark-money oligarchs will “Uberize” all of us. Tell your legislators we will not cooperate.”

Tick, tick, tick, CA state bills near their deadline… Game over on Aug. 31. Now it’s Newsom’s turn!

Action: YES, these are longer calls than usual, but we only have two days left, and good bills could be left behind while damaging ones are sneaking through!

This action may be edited throughout the day…FINAL RESULTS AFTER MIDNIGHT!

ASSEMBLYMEMBER CALLS:

Continue reading “Tick, tick, tick, CA state bills near their deadline… Game over on Aug. 31. Now it’s Newsom’s turn!”

UPDATE! Pride Weekend actions! Add your voice!

In case you missed the handout at Ventura’s own Pride Festival – you can catch up here!

UPDATE! STATE ACTION #1: THIS PASSED! Tell your assemblymembers to pass SB-107 – Gender-Affirming Health Care to provide refuge for trans kids & their families from states that are criminalizing them & threatening to remove transgender children from their homes.

Minimal script to your assemblymember: I’m calling from [zip code] and I want to[Assemblymember [___] to support and pass SB-107 – Gender-Affirming Health Care.

MORE INFORMATION!: This bill is heading to the Assembly floor! Amongst its provisions:

Continue reading “UPDATE! Pride Weekend actions! Add your voice!”

“Schedule F” stands for “Fascism,” “Flunkey” and “Fraud.

Trump signed an executive order to fill the entire executive branch with his lackeys.

1830s – President Andrew Jackson riding a pig, which is walking over “fraud,” “bribery,” and “spoils,” and feeding on “plunder.” 

There’s a reason authoritarians target the bureaucracy. Once they have it under their control, they are better able to stifle dissent and criticism, reward friends and punish enemies, using the levers of government to maintain power.– Donald Moynihan

“The liberty of a democracy is not safe if the people tolerated the growth of private power to a point where it becomes stronger than the democratic state itself. That in its essence is fascism: ownership of government by an individual, by a group, or any controlling private power.” 
― Franklin D. Roosevelt

ACTION #1: Call your representatives!

Continue reading ““Schedule F” stands for “Fascism,” “Flunkey” and “Fraud.”

What would Carmen do when faced with environmental injustice?

She fought it fiercely, but now it’s our turn. And you can do all these actions in your coffee break if you prep your phone – we show you how here.
Q: But why do I have to call my legislators? They’re all Democrats. Answer here.

  • Action #1 (State): Call your CA state senator TODAY and tell them to vote “NO” on SB 396.
  • Action #2 (State) : Call/email your CA state legislators to vote “YES” on the following environmental bills…
  • Action #3 (Federal): Fixing the “Inflation Reduction Act” – Can you say “sacrifice zone?”

Sierra Club Santa Barbara-Ventura Chapter: Tribute to Carmen Ramirez

In oil counties like SB and Ventura, where if we win it is with narrow 3-2 Supervisor votes, where oil companies spend $8 million on county initiatives (as they did in June in Ventura) and sue the county (as they are doing in both counties right now), it takes superstars like Carmen to set us on the clean energy path and not double down on increasingly carbon-intensive fossil fuel infrastructure. My hope is that we can step up our state game to lighten the load. Read more from members who have known and loved her on the following blog post here. (Tribute post here)

Katie Davis, Chapter Board Chair

Action #1 (State): Call your CA state senator TODAY and tell them to vote “NO” on SB 396.

Continue reading “What would Carmen do when faced with environmental injustice?”

¡Viva Carmen Ramirez! – 3 actions to take in her name.

  • Action #1: Tell Governor Newsom to publicly support the Vision Act!
  • Action #2: Pass H.R. 1177/S.348 – U.S. Citizenship Act NOW!
  • Action #3: Carmen cared about families and children. Ask to pass H.R.2766/S.1375 – Families Belong Together Act in her name.

Last week, our much loved and respected Ventura County supervisor Carmen Ramirez tragically died in a traffic accident. She tirelessly spoke at every local event in support of environmental justice, homeless rights, abortion rights, immigration rights and the needs of the communities she served. Before becoming the first Latina in county history to become an elected supervisor, and the first Latina chairwoman of the board, Ramirez had been, for a time, the president of the Ventura County Bar Assn. and was later elected to the State Bar of California’s board of governors— now called the board of trustees. She also served as a longtime board member for the Center for Civic Education, a nonprofit that promotes the study and practice of democracy, and was appointed to the Commission on State Mandates by then-Gov. Jerry Brown in 2012.

She had so much more planned, and now it’s on us to carry it through.

Action #1: Tell Governor Newsom to publicly support the Vision Act!

Continue reading “¡Viva Carmen Ramirez! – 3 actions to take in her name.”

“IG” stands for “Inspector General” and should stand for a lot more.

What is an Inspector General (IG)? The Inspector General Act of 1978 created a system of overseers who work within, but independently of, federal agencies, to detect and prevent waste, fraud, and abuse. Inspectors General are to be selected “without regard to political affiliation and solely on the basis of integrity and demonstrated ability in accounting, auditing, financial and management analysis, law, public administration, or investigations.” Agencies are prohibited from interfering in IG investigations, and there is a dual reporting structure where an Inspector General reports to both the agency head and to Congress. The act has been updated three times to expand the number of statutory IGs and enhance their independence, transparency, and accountability. Then came Trump…

Action #1: Call the Department of Defense Inspector General’s hotline.

Continue reading ““IG” stands for “Inspector General” and should stand for a lot more.”

#WelcomeWithDignity – Defend the Right to Seek Asylum

Deterrence is effective in inverse proportion to the desperation of the migrants. What we’re seeing is a much, much, much more desperate group of migrants coming to the border….if they truly believe that they will be killed, or their children will be murdered, it’s hard to deter against that.” (Theresa Cardinal Brown, Bipartisan Policy Center – “Will an Emergency Law Used to Keep Out Migrants Become Permanent?)

Although the CDC announced the end of Title 42 in spring of 2022 as “no longer necessary” to protect public health, a federal judge blocked ending the policy in May, revealing what should have been evident all along – Title 42 was never about COVID-19 or public health – it was always about border control.

Worried that the court’s block could fail, conservative lawmakers are attempting to override the CDC and public health experts by passing legislation that would continue Title 42 expulsions indefinitely. One example – S.4022, proposed by Idaho’s senators and Florida’s Rubio, states who took few precautions against COVID, would extend this inhumane policy until right after the 2024 presidential election.

Meanwhile, Title 42 continues to have devastating consequences for asylum seekers who have already faced grave harm – including death, abduction, torture, and rape, which disproportionately affect Black, Indigenous, and LGTBQ+ migrants. 

ACTION #1: Call all three of your federal legislators (both senators, & your representative!)

Continue reading “#WelcomeWithDignity – Defend the Right to Seek Asylum”