I rode to D.C. in a van full of activists from Michigan and Canada. I was also accompanied by John Bolenbaugh, who worked on the Enbridge Oil Spill clean up in the Kalamazoo River, until he blew the whistle on Enbridge for covering up oil rather than cleaning it up properly. I met John after I had outed the illegal liability waivers Enbridge had been using to trick residents in to signing after their oil spill in Michigan.
We arrived in D.C. at about 9 a.m. we had brought with us hundreds of signs to hand out that said “Enbridge Lies” and “Tar Sand Truth.” We also brought t-shirts and sweatshirts to hand out along with a microphone and speaker to use to educate people about our experience with the Enbridge oil spill and the subsequent oil cover-up. We also wanted people to watch the video proof on John’s website helppa.org
The rally began at noon. The speakers at the rally included, hip-hop caucus Rev. Yearwood, U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse, President Obama’s former ‘green jobs’ czar, Van Jones, 350.0rg founder, Bill McKibben, and Mike Brune of the Sierra Club. Van Jones discussed how the Keystone XL Pipeline will define and be part of Obama’s legacy. Senator Whitehouse called on people in Washington to change their game. Mike Brune reassured the crowd that we were on the right side of history.
The highlight of the rally in my opinion, was the march from the Washington Monument to the front of the White House. During the march the crowd almost doubled in size as more people came and joined in the march. Occupy Wall St. had a very visible presence as many ‘occupiers’ wore black and yellow tape that said “OCCUPY.” Occupy also had a large banner that I had the privilege to help carry during the march, which read “OCCUPY WALL ST STOP KEYSTONE.” While marching the crowd broke out in to various chants. A constant banging of drums could be heard. Signs, flags and banners blew in the wind and the infamous over-sized Lady Liberty Puppet made an appearance and danced throughout the march.
Once the crowd arrived at the White House more chanting began. “Obama come out…we got some shit to talk about.” “We are unstoppable..another world is possible.” and “Obama…Obama…we don’t want no climate drama” were among some of the most popular chants heard throughout the crowd.
After the march, the crowd began to disperse and the buses began to leave D.C. I can still fell the energy from the rally and march. Being present around so many like minded individuals fighting the same fight as you, has got to be one of the most powerful feelings ever.
President Obama is scheduled to decide on the Keystone XL Pipeline any time. What would you like to say to the President before he makes his decision. And if you were at the Forward on Climate Rally, please share what you experienced in the comments below. I sure would like to hear from you!
Summary:The Kalamazoo community is deciding on how they will respond to Westboro Baptist Church visit to CMU; Bullying – where to draw the line between religious liberty and safety; Moms Clean Air Force and the fight for our kids’ right to clean air; Ale Mary’s brewhaha.
Show Notes/Links Hour 1: Todd Heywood from Lansing informs us about the upcoming visit of the Westboro Church to Central Michigan University and a planning session for what the community response will be. Jeremiah comments on the issue of Bullying, and asks, “Where should society draw the line with faith-based bullying?”
Hour 2: Dominque Browning, of Moms Clean Air Force, an organization dedicated to fighting with strength for our kids’ right to clean air. You can’t buy the answer to clean air, at the heart of Moms Clean Air Force is in community. Working to end contamination of fish, cut carbon emissions from new power plants, establish cross-state pollution protections.
Guest, Greg Mitchell, OccupyUSA blog at The Nation will be our guest during our 2nd hour.
Also, Trayvon Martin, a 17 year old, was shot and killed by neighborhood watch captain George Zimmerman in Sanford, FL. Zimmerman claimed he acted in self-defense, and he hasn’t been arrested. The lack of arrest in the case has prompted outrage from civil rights activists, local leaders and people from around the country. And Glenn Beck’s TheBlaze outrages commentary on the incident. Also, evolution of dolphins, whales and kangaroos.
LISTEN ON WPRR AM1680/95.3FM and online/mobile app from 3pm – 6pm EST today. Let PaleoRadio be your voice for transpartisan truth – give us a call at 616-656-1680 and be a part of the conversation. We also look forward to reading your comments below.
If you miss the show today, or you want to hear it again, you can download it tonight at PublicRealityRadio.org.
Something is happening. It’s been happening for quite awhile now. We saw it in Farm Aid, when family farms were being gobbled up by predatory lenders, foreclosed upon and taken over by CAFO’s. Farm Aid, didn’t help as much as we had hoped. But we continued learning. Then the anti-apartheid movement sprang up and this thing that is happening reached across borders to an African nation. Fast-forward to this century. We’ve seen WikiLeaks uncover the secrets the established world order prefers for us to not see. The Arab Spring brought down a regime. Rush Limbaugh is being toppled. And KONY is being made world famous in order to have him brought to justice.
The established order, which seeks to accumulate wealth, power and influence is crumbling. Deservedly so. For awhile, they have been able to maintain their status quo. But something is different now. Something so radical in the minds of people that I am unable to fathom it, let alone analyze it. It is happening as well to the established gatekeepers who determine what makes the nightly news report. “That’s the way it is”, is no longer the way it really is.
The establishment senses it. They are reacting to it with draconian measures. Efforts to evict occupiers and to make basic freedoms a federal crime. The Citizens United ruling, the passage of the (Enabling) Patriot Act, the NDAA, and the expatriation bill that is floating around in Congress are all a part of their reaction. Such tactics are taking place not just in our own government but in legislative bodies around the world.
The peoples of the world have become a community through social media and the Internet. The message is the medium. By its very nature, the Internet allows people to connect world wide, instantaneously to voice public outcry to “publick occurrences.” Occurrences which awaken our sense of social responsibility to the point of inciting our individual responsibility. The Internet not only to facilitates that voice, but it facilitates the way in which we think differently about the world around us.
It is becoming an extension of who we are by our very nature as well. It is changing our psychology as a people and as individuals. Individuals who connect with others, through the Internet, become more powerful than any repressive regime or corporatocracy. And people responding en masse around the world to issues and injustices are merely the manifestation of a much deeper change in the worldview of our global civilization.
Are we seeing established political parties becoming irrelevant? Are we are facing strong possibility of an independent Presidential candidate? Will people stop identifying themselves with a (D) or an (R) and become transpartisan? What does it mean now to be a nation? Is there even such a thing anymore? In a world where corporations have tossed aside their loyalty to nations, are we not seeing the same thing taking place in the rapid direct action responses around the world to further the progress of justice and peace? And ultimately, will the disestablishment movement we are a witness to today, one day become the new establishment?
Whatever becomes the answer to these questions, one thing is for sure. The Internet is indeed our Areopagitica.
Pat Buchanan fired – rightly so; Romney’s recent campaign ad; Obama’s supposed war on religion; ‘What is a progressive?’; Santorum out to lunch on birth control; Jessica Ahlquist’s courageous stand against prayer banner in a public school; and Ed Brayton on religion, culture, politics and his new show on PublicRealityRadio, WPRR.
More about Ed Brayton:
Journalist, Editor, Comedian, Commentator, Blogger – are among the hats Brayton wears. He has appeared on the Rachel Maddow Show and the Thom Hartmann Show, and is almost certain that he is the only person ever to make fun of Chuck Norris on C-SPAN. He is also the owner of the Freethought Blogs network, the president and co-founder of Michigan Citizens for Science, and the voice behind the popular blog Dispatches from the Culture Wars.
He is a fellow with the non-profit organization Center for Independent Media, and the co-founder of Michigan Citizens for Science. He is the host of Culture Wars Radio on WPRR.
Oakland resident Jessica Hollie spoke to Oakland City Council and Mayor Jean Quan on how she feels about Occupy Oakland, and the city’s effort to pass a resolution increasing police violence in order to prevent future port blockades. We invited Jessica to join us on the air, we are not sure why she did not called but hope to have you on in the future.
Today on PaleoRadio we discuss: How the institution of the Senate is designed to not work; Is the Tea Party Dead? Negative Campaigns; Why people are so disconnected from the political process; Calling for Civility in Dissent; Proposition 8 Court Ruling; The mining deregulators want to work behind closed doors; Where do we go from here in the cause for Liberty and Freedom?
Guests: Kent Mesplay, Green Party Presidential nomination candidate; John Marcotte, Michigan Postal Workers Union President; Jesus Gonzales, from the Central Michigan Area Local; John Greathouse, Postal Worker; Mike Reed, Legislative & Political Director for the American Postal Workers Union
Summary: Pete Hoekstra’s Xenophobic Campaign Ad and his record on deficit spending (see video & details below); Kent Mesplay on his candidacy and the nature of partisan politics; Noam Chomsky’s take on what’s next for OWS; USPS update on the Pension Pre-funding Mandate; Could the ‘birthers’ try to hoodwink Obama into contempt of court charges?; Cheap Labor Conservatives; Swedes and Norwegians taking on the 1%; PaleoMeme Contest
PETE HOEKSTRA’S XENOPHOBIC CAMPAIGN AD
A TV ad, airing during the Super Bowl, for U.S. Senate candidate Pete Hoekstra features an Asian woman speaking broken English to accuse Michigan incumbent Democrat Debbie Stabenow of helping the Chinese economy at the expense of American jobs.
“Thank you Michigan Senator Debbie Spenditnow,” the Asian woman mispronounces, while riding her bike in a rice paddy field: “Debbie spends so much American money, you borrow more and more, from us. You’re economy get very weak, ours get very good. We take your jobs. Thank you Debbie Spenditnow.”
Hoekstra then appears in the ad stating: “I think this race for Michigan Senate is between Debbie ‘spend-it-now’ and Pete ‘spend-it-not.’”
Here’s Pete Hoekstra’s Record on ‘Spend-it-Not’ Supported Wall Street Bailout
Hoekstra Voted for the $700 Billion Wall Street Bailout. In 2008, Hoekstra voted for the $700 billion Wall Street bailout. [House Vote #681, 10/3/2008]
Supported Raising Debt Limit And Trillions of Dollars in Budget Deficit Increases
Hoekstra Supported Bush Deficit-Spending Budgets. [House Vote #158, 5/18/2006; House Vote #149, 4/28/2005; House Vote #198, 5/19/2004; House Vote #141, 4/11/2003; House Vote #79, 3/20/2002]
Hoekstra Votes Increased the Debt by 46 Percent to $8.6 Trillion From 2002 to 2006. In 2002 the total national debt was $5.9 trillion. The result of increased spending Hoekstra supported, the federal debt increased 46 percent, from approximately $5.6 trillion at the beginning of 2002 to an estimated $8.6 trillion at the end of 2006. [U.S. Department of the Treasury, Bureau of Public Debt]
Hoekstra Defended Votes For Increasing Debt Ceiling.
Hoekstra “defended his own votes to increase the debt ceiling when he was in Congress, saying the country was ‘on a trajectory’ toward a balanced federal budget.” [Daily Tribune, 7/27/2011]
Hoekstra Voted Against Pay-Go Budget Rules.
In July 2009, Hoekstra voted against a pay-go act that would require all budget bills be paid for and not add to the deficit for fiscal year 2010. [House Vote #612, 7/22/2009]
Hoekstra Voted Against Pay-Go Five Times In Just One Year.
In 2004, Hoekstra voted against establishing fiscally responsible pay-go measures five times. [House Vote #535, 11/18/2004; House Vote #317, 6/25/2004; House Vote #314, 6/24/2004; House Vote #145, 5/5/04; House Vote #97, 3/30/2004]
Budget Busting Bush Tax Cuts for Millionaires and Billionaires
Hoekstra Supported $70 Billion “Deficit-Financed” Tax Cut Bill that Benefits Millionaires and Billionaires. In 2006, Rep. Pete Hoekstra voted in favor of a $70 billion tax cut bill. The Washington Post called the bill a “windfall for the rich, and a hole in the federal budget.” According to a study by the Brookings Institution Tax Policy Center, Middle-income households would receive an average tax cut of $20, while the 0.2 percent of households with incomes over $1 million would get average tax cuts of $42,000. The Washington Post wrote that, “This Congress and administration are putting the nation deeper and deeper in debt to benefit a sliver of the population that doesn’t need the help. Someone’s going to have to pay for these deficit-financed tax cuts eventually, and it’s likely to be your grandchildren.” [Washington Post, 5/11/06; HR4297, Vote 135, 5/10/06]
Hoekstra Supported Bush’s 2004 Multitrillion-Dollar Tax Breaks for Wealthy. In March 2004, Rep. Pete Hoekstra supported Bush’s budget that permanently locked in multitrillion-dollar tax breaks that mostly benefit the nation’s wealthiest. According to the AFL-CIO, “To finance these taxes cuts for millionaires and billionaires, the Republican budget resolution—which mirrored Bush’s proposal—inflated the record-high $477 billion U.S. deficit and by $120 billion shortchanged or cut funds for the domestic programs working families need most—from job creation to health care, transportation and education. It also accelerated the repeal of the estate tax and made permanent tax cuts—such as the estate tax repeal, the capital gains and dividend rate cuts and the reduction in marginal rates—that provide huge benefits to families with the highest incomes.” [H Con Res 393, Vote #92, 3/25/04; 2004 AFL-CIO Scorecard]
Hoekstra Voted For $350 Billion Tax Cut For The Rich While Giving 50 Million Households Nothing.
In 2003, Rep. Pete Hoekstra voted for an irresponsible tax cut package that deepened the nation’s fiscal crisis and left middle-income households out in the cold. Some 53 percent of all U.S. households — or 74 million — will receive a tax cut of $100 or less in 2003 from the bill. Additionally, 36 percent of households — or 50 million — will receive no tax cut whatsoever in 2003, while tax filers who make $1 million or more per year will receive an average tax cut in 2003 of $93,500. The bill passed 231-200. [HR 2, Vote 225, 5/23/03; Center for Budget & Policy Priorities, 5/28/03]
Hoekstra Supported Budget Busting Tax Cut for the Wealthy.
In 2001, Rep. Pete Hoekstra voted in favor of the Bush tax cut package that reduced taxes by $1.35 trillion through 2010 through income tax cuts, relief of the marriage penalty, a phase-out of the federal estate tax, doubling the child tax credit, and providing incentives for retirement savings. Critics of the bill warned that the tax cut was too large and would jeopardize future Social Security benefits. [Congressional Budget Office; Campaign for America’s Future; HR 1836, Vote 149, 5/26/01]
Hoekstra Supported Bush’s Drug Benefit–Giving Medicare Dollars to Big Drug Companies
Hoekstra Supported Unfunded Prescription Drug Benefit. In 2003, Hoekstra supported the Republican Medicare Part D benefit plan, ” with unfunded future costs exceeding $7 trillion.” [Vote 669, 11/21/03; Washington Times, 9/18/2011]
Detroit Free Press: Hoekstra Got Michigan’s Worst Ranking For Pork In 2007. In May 2010 the Detroit Free Press reported: “[Hoekstra] also has supported spending that, at least in hindsight, was controversial — like the $400-million Alaskan bridge that would have connected the mainland to an island with 50 residents. In RePork Cards, issued by the anti-spending Club for Growth, Hoekstra scored a 97% for his voting record in 2009, voting against pork projects almost every time. But in 2007, on 50 pork-project votes rated by the group, Hoekstra’s 20% mark was easily the lowest among Michigan’s Republican congressional delegation that year.” [Detroit Free Press, 5/12/10]
Tea Party Criticism
Primary Opponent Durant Criticized Hoekstra’s Votes for Increasing the Debt Ceiling. Durant said, “We don’t need an increase in the debt limit… I’ve never voted for an increase in the debt limit and without real spending cuts, I never would.” The Grand Rapids Press noted Durant “said in a back-handed reference to Hoekstra’s votes in favor of raising the debt ceiling during his 18 years in Congress.” [Grand Rapids Press, 8/12/2011]
Conservative Opponent Criticized Hoekstra’s Fiscal Record.
In announcing his run for Senate, conservative Gary Glenn, “Noting Hoekstra’s votes for the $850 billion Wall Street bailout, earmarks such as the $223 million “Bridge to Nowhere,” and budgets and debt ceiling increases that added trillions of dollars to the national debt, Glenn cited Einstein’s definition of insanity: ‘Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result.’” Glenn said that Hoekstra “voted for red-ink budgets and debt ceiling increases that resulted in trillions in crushing new debt on our economy and our children’s future…. If we want to end the fiscal insanity in Washington, is it rational to expect we’ll get a different result if we keep sending the same people back there over and over again?” [Midland Daily News, 8/5/11]
Michigan Conservative Criticized Hoekstra’s Support for Wall Street Bailout.
According to MIRS, “Another potential candidate, Gary Glenn from Campaign for Michigan Families, came out firing against Hoekstra on Monday, inviting him to a five-day ‘Economics for Leaders’ seminar at Hillsdale College since he ‘voted to spend $850 billion of our tax dollars at TARP to bail out Wall Street bankers. I’ll save him a seat.’” [MIRS, 7/20/2011]
Hoekstra Criticized During GOP Primary For Bank Bailout Vote
During the Republican gubernatorial primary Hoekstra was criticized in ads “because of votes for the bank bailout.” [Kalamazoo Gazette, 3/17/2010]