This Week’s Quote:
“When wealth is passed off as merit, bad luck is seen as bad character. This is how ideologues justify punishing the sick and the poor. But poverty is neither a crime nor a character flaw. Stigmatize those who let people die, not those who struggle to live.
– Sarah Kendzior
Our favorite, Samatha Bee, is back. Just in time!
“And He Spelled It Right”
“Beyond the Body Slam”
“Who will be Trump’s John Dean?”
“On Not Liking Ted Cruz”
Plus a nice little commentary by the Daily Show.
So, Trump drives a golf-cart into a bar…
In a just few short days, from May 20 when he stepped off the plane in Riyadh, to the 27th, when he shook off the dust of Sigonella, Trump was able to undo decades and generations of trust, confidence, respect and admiration for our country.
He’s even inspired the leaders of nordic countries to troll him…
His trip, along with a disturbing assault by a Republican candidate back home in Montana, will have repercussions we’ll be dealing with for a long time. This Atlantic Monthy article describes them as the four great themes of the Trump era:
- The anti-alliance pro-Russia tilt of administration policy
- Collusion with hostile foreign nations for domestic political advantage
- Use of political power for personal financial advantage
- The breakdown of inhibitions and the weakening of sanctions against political violence.
For his next act, Trump cancelled the Paris Climate Accord…
…leaving us sitting back with Syria, which has other things to deal with right now, and Nicaragua, who, surprisingly, thought the original agreement was too wussy to bother with.
Trump’s speech, factually “creative” as usual, actually came as no surprise, as it’s impossible to be both an “America First” isolationist and “Leader of the Free World”. Meanwhile, the rest of the Accord members, including India and South Korea go “OK, don’t let the door hit you on the way out of being a world power”. Emmanuel Macron just posted this snappy video invitation for scientists to ditch America for France, where science is still respected and supported.
State and Business Responses
Back at home, Trump has simply been transformed into a bump in the road, as his denial of our responsibility towards solving global warming has inspired a widespread legislative and corporate backlash against him ( here, here , and here).
In hell-has-frozen-over news, the shareholders of ExxonMobil approved a proposal to report on climate change-related risks, despite management’s recommendation to vote against it.
California, New York and Washington have formed a coalition called the United States Climate Alliance. These three states hold a fifth of the US population and GDP, while only producing 11% of emissions.
The “World’s Most Ambitious Target” to Go 100% Renewables just passed the California Senate. Here are some interesting resources on this:
Even mayors are finding our President superfluous nuisance… “On Thursday, the group of mayors that call themselves the Mayors National Climate Action Agenda took their commitment to the planet a step further by adopting the historic agreement of their own accord.
“As 150 mayors representing 47 million Americans, we will adopt, honor, and uphold the commitments to the goals enshrined in the Paris Agreement,” the so-called “climate mayors” announced in a statement. “We will intensify efforts to meet each of our cities’ current climate goals, push for new action to meet the 1.5 degrees Celsius target, and work together to create a 21st-century clean energy economy.”
NEED SOME ENVIRONMENTALLY-MINDED VOLUNTEERS HERE!
Ventura does not yet belong to the Global Covenant of Mayors! Indivisible Ventura sent a letter, now we need to follow up. Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you’re interesting in assisting in this project.
We’re writing to request your position on Ventura joining our sister communities, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Santa Barbara, Santa Monica – among many others – in the fight to combat climate change and move to a low emission, resilient society. Specifically by joining forces with the Global Covenant of Mayors for Climate and Energy.
CA Senate votes to pass SB 562 “Healthy California Act”!!!
This could be just the beginning of a long legislative road, but here is a highlight of the new Economic Analysis by the Robert Pollin of Political Economy Research Institute of the University of Massachusetts Amherst. (Read the abstract here, read the whole report here)
“…The study finds that the providing full universal coverage would increase overall system costs by about 10 percent, but that the single payer system could produce savings of about 18 percent. The study thus finds that the proposed single-payer system could provide decent health care for all California residents while still reducing net overall costs by about 8 percent relative to the existing system. We propose two new taxes to generate the revenue required to offset the loss of private insurance spending: a gross receipts tax of 2.3 percent and a sales tax of 2.3 percent, along with exemptions and tax credits for small business owners and low-income families to promote tax-burden equity. Within this proposed tax framework, Healthy California can achieve both lower costs and greater equity in the provision of health care in California for both families and businesses of all sizes.”
The bill itself is here. Before you get nervous about the taxes, check out “Chapter 4. Benefits”, which includes things that many current policies don’t cover, like dental care, vision care and hearing aids, as well as skilled nursing, home health care, prescriptions, adult day care, mental heath care and a whole host of great benefits.
Thank your Senator Hannah-Beth Jackson (http://sd19.senate.ca.gov/send-e-mail) for voting for this and get ready to call your Assemblyperson to continue this on its way.
However, there is no guarantee that this will pass, so don’t take your eye off the Federal healthcare ball.
Take a moment to email our senators to tell them we appreciate their fight against the GOP’s tax-relief-for-wealthy-people-pretending-to-be-a-healthcare-bill.
“Well, let me ask you this bluntly – is every American entitled to eat?” (Actual quote.) Welcome to the Budget.
(2HoursAWeek)”We can expect the budget to go from extreme to conservative which means there will likely be deep cuts in whatever proposal comes out of the House and Senate. These cuts will not be as deep as the WH suggested cuts and will appear less drastic and therefore more reasonable; but don’t fall for it – the cuts will still likely be significant.
The House and Senate budget committees will release their proposed budget resolutions sometime in June and we have to be ready to identify and fight against any significant cuts to critical resources that will harm the social safety net, as well as undermine education, agriculture, and community development.
You should also keep in mind several budget dependencies. A tax cut is a big goal of the Trump regime. And it won’t happen unless both the House and Senate pass a 2018 budget resolution, which they can’t do until they pass a new healthcare bill. That brings us back to the importance of the AHCA in all of this.
- $4.1 trillion total in cuts
- $800 billion cut to Medicaid over ten years
- $192 billion cuts (quote here) to food stamps
- $72 billion cuts to disability payments
- Eliminate subsidized college loan programs and loan forgiveness for those who work in public sector
- $2.6 billion on border security – $1.6 billion of which is for The Wall
- $3 billion cut in community development block grants
- $2.5 billion in cuts annually to farm subsidies
- The complete elimination of 66 departmental agencies
“Call Your Ossoff!” Phone Banking Event for Indivisible Ventura and other interested volunteers – June 17th.
We have confirmed our Phone Banking event for June 17th, 10:00am-12:00pm at the Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf, 4360 E Main Street.
Jennifer Eis from Indivisible Conejo are working on scheduling a time prior to the event to do some training.
We also created the event on our facebook page and would love your help spreading the word!
(Note: John Ossoff is looking for some multilingual help to reach Asian-American and Pacific Islander voters. Ability to speak Hindi or Gujarati would be particularly helpful. If you can help or know someone who can, please have them contact the campaign here. The calls can be made from one’s home, based on availability and convenience.)
Stop the Crazy. Help Facebook halt the spread of fake news!
A proposal that will be voted on at Facebook’s annual shareholder meeting asks the company to issue a report detailing how false new stories are a threat to democracy and Facebook’s own reputation. They also want a more complete explanation of what the company is doing to combat the spread of fake news on its platform.
We can help FB clean up fake news. 1) Click the “v” next to the post you’d like to mark as false (top right-hand corner of article), 2) Click Report post, 3) Click It’s a false news story, and 4) Click Mark this post as false news
Today is Saturday! Get Your March on!
On Saturday, June 3, both Santa Barbara and Los Angeles will be holding a March for Truth. The goals are simple and bipartisan (at least, theoretically):
- Establish a fully funded, non-partisan independent commission;
- As much information as possible should be made public as soon as possible;
- Congress should require Donald Trump to release his tax returns to clarify his business interests and obligations to any foreign entity;
- If crimes were committed or if collusion is discovered, they must be prosecuted.
Those are goals we can all get behind!
More details here…
America behaving badly – What can one do if faced with the same choices those three men in Portland had?
– The mother of Taliesin Myrddin Namkai-Meche writes a letter to Trump.
– Trump stayed silent too long. Dan Rather’s Response is perfect.
– Attacks like Portland’s will keep happening unless we Fight White Supremacy.
– (Rogan’s List) A new study: “I don’t think Trump created new prejudices in people — not that quickly and not that broadly. What he did do is change people’s perceptions about what is okay and what is not okay,” says University of Kansas psychologist Chris Crandall
Meanwhile, anti-Muslim hate groups will be marching across the US next weekend, including here in CA.
On June 10th, anti-Muslim protests, organized by “Act for America”, are taking place across the United States, marketed as a “March Against Sharia.” http://imagine2050.newcomm.org/2017/05/22/anti-muslim-march-against-sharia-planned/.
The closest one to us is in 10:00 – 12:00, 1365 S. Waterman Ave, San Bernardino, CA https://www.facebook.com/events/1415608195162234
References on “Act for America”: https://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2017/03/americas-most-anti-muslim-activist-is-welcome-at-the-white-house/520323/
Call our local mosques to see how we can help support them. We can also engage our local communities by writing a letter to the editor of our local newspaper, in support of our Muslim neighbors. These people are “acting” for an America that we would have no part of.
We continue to fight for SB 54 “The California Values Act”!
Last Wednesday, May 31, a variety of resistance groups, including Indivisible Ventura, Indivisible Conejo, CLUE, CAUSE, SWAN and others demonstrated in front of Jacqui Irwin’s office, along with a smaller but vociferous group of anti-SB45 protesters. The bill would prevent state and local agencies from assisting ICE unless dealing with violent criminals. It would keep state and local databases away from ICE, and their presence out of public places like schools, hospitals and government offices, slowing down Trump’s inhumane executive order which doesn’t discriminate between our hard-working neighbors and criminals. Indivisible Ventura strongly supports SB 45 and our letter to the Chair of the Assembly Public Safety Committee regarding this is here.
If you can make this meeting, please support our local farmworkers!
(From Indivisible Conejo) “…the “Farmworker Bill of Rights” will come up for a vote among the Ventura County Board of Supervisors next Tuesday, June 6. The measure would amend the county’s budget to create a Farmworker Resource Program with local staff, who can help farmworkers learn about their labor rights, directly resolve issues with their employers, or report violations to public agencies. The farmworker/migrant advocacy groups CAUSE and MICOP ask supporters to attend the meeting, scheduled for 10:30 a.m. at the Hall of Administration in Ventura, 800 S. Victoria Avenue. Particularly because a Tuesday morning is a difficult time for farmworkers themselves to attend, community allies are urged to show local policymakers that our community is committed to meeting the needs of farmworkers.”
Acts of Gratitude – Break out your nifty postcards!
Thank Rep Walter Jones (R-NC) for voting for the release of 45’s tax returns. Americans appreciate you voting for transparency rather than party. Address: 2333 Rayburn HOB, Washington, DC 20515
Thank NY AG Eric Schneiderman for taking Exxon to task. Corporations that are complicit in global warming should be held accountable. Thank you. Address: Eric T. Schneiderman, Esq., Attorney General, The Capitol, Albany, New York 12224
Thank Chellie Pingree (D-ME) for reminding Sec. Zinke that 45 does not have jurisdiction over national monuments; Congress does. Thank you for your advocacy for America’s people, monuments, and wild places. Address: 2162 Rayburn HOB, Washington, DC 20515
Thank Mark Meadows (R-NC) for his understanding of the risks facing Americans with pre-existing conditions. Thank you for honoring the memory of your sister and father in your advocacy for affordable healthcare for all Americans. Address: 1024 Longworth HOB, Washington, DC 20515
Thank Rand Paul (R-KY) for opposing the sale of arms to Saudi Arabia. Human rights and protecting national security are more important than a “good deal.” Thank you for your leadership. Address: 1029 State Street, Bowling Green, KY 42101
Thank Mayor Mitch Landrieu for removing symbols of slavery and oppression from New Orleans’ public spaces. Our country is better for it and for your example. Address: Mayor’s Office, 1300 Perdido St, 2nd Floor, New Orleans, LA 70112
Rebecca Solnit on the “would-be tyrant.”
Nicholas Kristof has written a powerful op-ed in the New York Times, On a Portland Train, the Battlefield of American Values
This is getting added to the Resource Library: https://medium.com/@Amy_Siskind. “Steve Bannon’s dream of “the deconstruction of the administrative state” is happening before our eyes: from the cabinet picks, the people chosen to head departments, to the rollback of protections, to the proposed budget full of cuts, to the cooling relationships with our allies, using unsecured phones, etc. Thankfully, Amy Siskind has been keeping track of the changes for us “.
“Republicans used to claim to favor the rule of law.” http://www.businessinsider.com/gianforte-body-slam-republicans-montana-vote-2017-5
“A technical, but sobering look at Trump’s base, thanks to Nate Silver’s 538: ” https://fivethirtyeight.com/features/dissecting-trumps-most-rabid-online-following/?ex_cid=538twitter.
We need to be aware that the EPA is replacing scientific information on its website with industry-friendly information. We can no longer rely on the EPA site as a fact-based resource. http://www.independent.com/news/2017/may/25/trumps-censorship-science/
(Thanks as ever to Rogan’s List, 2 Hours a Week, Jen Hofmann and the internet for its cornucopia of resources)