2019-05-12: News Headlines

Register Peace & Freedom or Green (2019-05-12). No Enforcement of Law While Democrat-Republicans Do Nothing. indybay.org The Embassy Protection Collective at the Venezuelan Embassy in Washington, D.C. are now facing no power or water and no delivery of food or medicine because the United States Secret Service and the Washington, D.C. police refuse to enforce the law while the Democrat-Republicans stay silent.

Green Party (2019-05-12). What is the state of rule of law and the role of precedent in our federal courts? indybay.org Niebyl-Proctor Library, 6501 Telegraph Ave. at 65th in North Oakland | DIRECTIONS: One block north of Alcatraz on the West side of Telegraph, wheelchair accessible. Buses pass by regularly. Ashby BART is approximately 7 blocks away.

Staff (2019-05-12). Florida Activists Fight Against Bill Preventing Former Felons from Voting. therealnews.com Last year Florida voters approved a ballot measure called Amendment 4 which restored voting rights of an estimated 1.5 million former felons. To counteract this amendment 4, Republicans proposed a bill that would require former felons to pay court costs and fines before they are able to vote — what activists are calling a poll…

Joan Brunwasser (2019-05-11). Who's anti-Bernie and why they're wrong. nationofchange.org My guest today is Norman Solomon, author, activist and cofounder/national coordinator of RootsAction.org. | Joan Brunwasser: Welcome back to OpEdNews, Norman. We last chatted back in 2015, which seems like a very long time ago. I'd like to talk a bit about your recent piece, Bernie is Not a Wind Sock [3.25.19]. What did you mean by that? | Norman Solomon: Politicians who change direction with the wind aren't dependa…

Teddy Ostrow (2019-05-11). 'Bernie Speaks'—And Politico Hears Deviations From Cold War Orthodoxy. commondreams.org The cable-access TV show Bernie Speaks With the Community was produced in the 1980s when Sanders was mayor of Burlington, Vermont. (Photo: Screengrab) | www.commondreams.org/sites/default/files…

Paul Haeder (2019-05-11). Kilowatt and Gallons Per Wash-load Illiterate Americans. dissidentvoice.org No Water. No Life. No Blue. No Green. — Sylvia Earle In the tradition of many of my posts, I end up looking at the local through a sometimes fine and other times coarse lens to extrapolate what this country, and most First World We Are the Only Ones Who Matter countries, is facing way …

Staff (2019-05-11). What People in Kentucky Coal Country Really Think About a Green New Deal. truthout.org In late March, Republican Rep. Andy Barr of Kentucky — a member of the Congressional Coal Caucus — invited Democratic Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York to come to his state to talk with coal miners about what her proposed Green New Deal "would mean for their families, their paychecks." The invitation came after Ocasio-Cortez spoke passionately in Congress against the i…

Lee Fang (2019-05-11). Lobbyists Working to Undermine Medicare For All Host Congressional Staff at Luxury Resort. theintercept.com At a luxury resort just outside of the nation's capital last month, around four dozen senior congressional staffers decamped for a weekend of relaxation and discussion at Salamander Resort & Spa. It was an opportunity for Democrats and Republicans to come together and listen to live music from the Trailer Grass Orchestra, sip surprisingly impressive glasses of Virginia wine — and hear from health care lobbyists focused on defeating Medicare for All. | The event was hosted by a group called Center Forward and featured a lecture from industry lobbyists leading the charge on undermining progressive health care…

RT (2019-05-11). 'You're making yourselves look weak': Bill Maher goads Dems for fruitless Trump complaints (VIDEO). rt.com HBO's Bill Maher sent a shot across the bow of Democrats constantly complaining about the Trump administration, saying they should either "do something or stop talking about it."

Jake Johnson, staff writer (2019-05-11). 'If Mnuchin Doesn't Comply, Throw Him in Jail': House Democrats Subpoena Trump Tax Returns. commondreams.org "The American people deserve the truth about Trump's deeply concerning conflicts of interest and his profiting from the presidency." | www.commondreams.org/sites/default/files…

Staff (2019-05-11). House Democrats Subpoena Trump Tax Returns. truthout.org After Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin repeatedly refused to comply with requests to hand over President Donald Trump's tax returns — which some legal experts say is clearly required under federal law — the House Ways and Means Committee late Friday subpoenaed both Mnuchin and IRS Commissioner Charles Rettig for the documents.

Staff (2019-05-11). Trump Lawyer Giuliani Threatens, Then Abandons, Ukraine Trip. truthdig.com NEW YORK—Democrats denounced a plan by President Donald Trump's personal attorney to push Ukraine to open investigations that he hopes could benefit Trump politically, saying it was an overt attempt to recruit foreign help to influence a U.S. election. | But lawyer Rudy Giuliani has scrapped plans to visit Ukraine, citing concerns about who he would be dealing with there. | "I've decided … I'm not going to go to the Ukraine," Giuliani told Fox News on Friday night. "I'm not going to go because I think I'm walking into a group of people that are enemies of the president … in some cases enemies of the Uni…

Staff (2019-05-11). Women of Color Call on Congress to End Ban on Federal Abortion Funding. truthout.org As women of color fighting for reproductive health and rights, we must speak truth to power because too often the policies of those in power do not reflect the priorities or lived truths of our communities. We see decisions that time and again ignore the daily struggle our communities must contend with as a result of policies that systematically hinder our ability to thrive — and that's exactly what happened in Democrats' Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies (LHHS) funding bill. | Although we welcome the inclusion of much-needed protections to Title X family planning funding…

Jake Johnson, staff writer (2019-05-11). Staffers for Top Democrats Reportedly Attended 'Luxury' Retreat Hosted by Lobbyists Fighting Medicare for All. commondreams.org "This event wasn't about fixing the healthcare system. It was about protecting the healthcare industry, no matter the cost to patients, families, workers, or employers." | www.commondreams.org/sites/default/files…

John Nichols (2019-05-10). AOC and Bernie Put Postal Banking Back on the Agenda. thenation.com AOC and Bernie Put Postal Banking Back on the Agenda…

Ashley Curtin (2019-05-10). Bernie Sanders calls for national ban on fracking. nationofchange.org Sen. Bernie Sanders announced a need for a national ban on fracking, which is part of his sweeping climate agenda as he campaigns for the 2020 Democratic presidential nominee. While scientific studies conclude fracking poses a threat to climate, air quality and water supply, Sanders said it is a major contributor to the world's climate crisis.Fracking is a danger to our water supply. It's a danger to the air we breathe. It causes earthquakes. It's highly explosive. And it's contributing to climate change. We need to ban it nationwide. pic.twitter.com/acF22iQLRy— Bern…

Louis Proyect (2019-05-10). Bernie Sanders and the Movement That Might Have Been. counterpunch.org As I gird my loins for a renewed ideological struggle against Bernie Sanders's bid to become the Democratic Party's nominee to run against Donald Trump, I thought it advisable to get up to speed by reading Jeffrey St. Clair's "Bernie & The Sandernistas: Field Notes From a Failed Revolution" that was published in 2016. Since More

susan_p (2019-05-10). Venezuela's crisis: A view from the communes. greenleft.org.au Within hours of Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaidó calling for street mobilisations to back his attempted military coup against President Nicolás Maduro on April 30, Guaidó's supporters had looted and set fire to the headquarters of the Indio Caricuao Commune in south-west Caracas. | The building was used for local residents' meetings and housed a commune-run textile enterprise, which funds projects in the community. | Atenea Jiménez, from the National Network of Comuneros (commune activists) said: "Once again attacks on the communes by fascist sectors have begun." | She also noted however that comuneros "a…

pip.hinman (2019-05-10). Sudan: 'The army's duty is to protect its people, not to govern'. greenleft.org.au Green Left Weekly's Sam Wainwright spoke with Sabrine Ali, Samah Suria, Nidal Saeed and Nagi Kodi, all Sudanese youth living in Perth, about the powerful movement in Sudan. | What did this movement learn from previous waves of protest in Sudanese history? | Sabrine Ali: Without having a proper foundation of how to run a revolution, it is going to collapse. The Sudanese Professional Association (SPA) has basically organised the revolution, the protests and … that has helped a lot with it having the proper foundation. | Why was the protest movement successful this time compared to the past? | Nagi Kodi: This time…

Sara Jayyousi (2019-05-10). What I Lost (and Can Never Get Back) When My Father Was in Guantanamo North. commondreams.org The federal prison facility in Terre Haute, Ind., is home to one of the nation's so-called "Communications Management Units." (Photo: M. Spencer Green/AP) | www.commondreams.org/sites/default/files…

susan_p (2019-05-10). Sri Lanka: bombings a pretext for intensified repression. greenleft.org.au The Sri Lankan army and police have used the bombings of churches and hotels on Easter Sunday as a pretext for repression, targeting people who have no connection with the group responsible, the National Thowheed Jamath (NTJ — National Monotheism Society). | The NTJ, an extremist Islamic group, is believed to be linked to the Islamic State, based in Iraq and Syria. | Sri Lankan police have been raiding numerous Muslim groups with "Thowheed" in their name, even if they are opposed to the NTJ. As of May 2, at least 130 Muslims had been detained, according to Tamilnet. | Non-Muslims have also been affected. On…

susan_p (2019-05-10). Venezuela: How one local council is working to overcome the crisis through people's power. greenleft.org.au In the midst of Venezuela's prolonged economic crisis, in which state budgets and support for the governing socialists steadily contract, at least one municipal council is bucking the trend. The key, according to the local mayor, has been focusing on people's power and self-management. | Paéz is a rural municipality located in Apure state, along the tense border with Colombia. Opposition-controlled Tachira state lies to its west. | Despite this conflictive surrounding, José María "Chema" Romero managed to increase the United Socialist Party of Venezuela's (PSUV) vote in the 2017 mayoral elections by 70% from its…

pip.hinman (2019-05-10). Workers rally around the world for May Day. greenleft.org.au As the gap between rich and poor widens, millions of workers around the world marched for workers' rights on May Day. | May Day, also known as Labor Day, began in 1890 with the campaign for the 8-hour work day. It has since become a key day for workers' campaigns around the world. | This May Day, workers marched against the fascist Rodrigo Duterte regime in the Philippines, against austerity and the rise of the far-right in Europe and against US President Donald Trump's attacks on immigrants. | Low-paid workers in Indonesia marched for fair pay, millions of Cubans celebrated 60 years of the ongoing revolution, an…

pip.hinman (2019-05-10). Greens, preferences and radical social change. greenleft.org.au This federal election is taking place at a time when the need for radical social and economic change is palpable: the escalating climate crisis and rampant and growing inequality are two major symptoms of the bankruptcy of capitalism. | The school climate strike movement is one manifestation of the desire for meaningful change. And there are many others too. | But while radical change is needed, those who campaign for it are still too often derided as extremist or idealist (with the exception of the students who the powers-that-be hope will "grow up" and embrace pragmatism). | There is a strong desire to get rid…

pip.hinman (2019-05-10). Anti-CSG activists say Santos must be stopped. greenleft.org.au About 60 anti-coal seam gas campaigners gathered outside NSW parliament on May 7 to greet newly-elected MPs with a clear message: stop Santos' Narrabri Gas Project in the state's north west. | The action was organised by Stop CSG Sydney and the Knitting Nannas and Friends. | Protesters received a positive response from some MPs, including the Shooters, Fishers and Farmers Party (SFF), the NSW Greens and an independent. | SFF's Roy Butler recommitted his party to opposing CSG developments. He also said his party supported a moratorium on CSG until all of the Chief Scientist's recommendations are implemented. | But…

susan_p (2019-05-10). Nakba 2019: Eurovision fails to hide suffering of Palestinians. greenleft.org.au The annual commemoration of al Nakba on May 15 — the 1947 catastrophe when 750,000 Palestinians were evicted from their homes and thousands of Palestinian villages wiped off the map — coincides this year with the Eurovision Song Contest, taking place in the Israeli city of Tel Aviv. | Ramadan has also begun, and Israeli crackdowns during Ramadan and around al Nakba commemorations are a given. What is different this year is the viciousness of the attacks and Israel's determination that its Eurovision PR showcase will proceed, uninterrupted by questions about its human rights record. | As Palestine…

pip.hinman (2019-05-10). Boycott Brunei movement to continue despite Sultan's retreat. greenleft.org.au The Boycott Brunei in Australia group have said the campaign against Brunei's death-by-stoning penalty for "crimes" such as homosexuality, adultery, blasphemy and apostasy will continue despite Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah's May 6 statement that he had reconsidered the April 3 order. | The activists welcomed the Sultan's comments, but noted that the Syrariah Penal Code Order (SPCO) was only suspended, not cancelled, saying life for those who breached government diktats remained grim. | "We welcome the Sultan's statement that the death penalty has been shelved," said Boycott Brunei in Australia spokesperson Peter Hackn…

pip.hinman (2019-05-10). Greens candidate: 'The system is stacked to work for the two major parties'. greenleft.org.au Former NSW Fire Brigades Employees Union (FBEU) state secretary Jim Casey is standing as the Greens candidate for the seat of Grayndler in inner west Sydney. He spoke to Green Left Weekly's Rachel Evans about his campaign. | You are involved in the Stop Adani campaign. How do you see the movement stopping this catastrophic project? | The first step is to get rid of [Prime Minister] Scott Morrison. The second step is to build a movement, which requires thousands of people having thousands of conversations in the suburbs, in the cities, in the country. | Adani is the coalface of the broader struggle of stopping cl…

Mark Gruenberg (2019-05-10). Nadler: Subpoenas needed to stop 'tyrannical' Trump. peoplesworld.org WASHINGTON—Congress must issue and enforce subpoenas against "tyrannical" GOP President Donald Trump — for everything from the entire Mueller report and its background materials to Trump's tax returns — the chair of the committee that would handle impeaching Trump says. In a long interview May 9 on the PBS Newshour, Rep. Jerry Nadler, D-N.Y., stopped …

RT (2019-05-10). House Democrats issue new subpoena for Trump's tax returns. rt.com The US House Ways and Means Committee has issued a subpoena for President Donald Trump's tax returns after a prior request under the tax code was rebuffed with the argument it lacked "legitimate legislative purpose."

ACLU (2019-05-10). House Funding Bill Shows How Far We've Come in the Fight for Reproductive Freedom—And How Far We Have to Go. aclu.org A key bill makes important strides for reproductive health, and shows why we need presidential candidates to show leadership on abortion coverage | This week the House Appropriations Committee advanced the Labor, Health, and Human Services appropriations bill, the annual bill that funds federal health and education programs. It makes important strides forward on reproductive health and rights–and it also shines a light on the need for presidential leadership on abortion coverage.

Dr. Binoy Kampmark (2019-05-10). The Democrats and the Mueller Report: "Muellerisation" globalresearch.ca The psychic problems facing the Democrats continue to bite, and with their foiled efforts to see the full, unredacted report of the Mueller Report, they look distracted, confused and bitter. In politics, the sense of vengeance and retribution has a …

David Dayen (2019-05-09). Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Bernie Sanders Team Up on Bank Legislation. theintercept.com Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez will announce her first major bill today, in partnership with Vermont Sen. and presidential candidate Bernie Sanders. It's something Sanders has proposed for many years: a 15 percent interest rate cap on all consumer loans, which would reduce what many Americans pay on their credit cards and effectively eliminate the payday loan industry. | The bill is called the Loan Shark Prevention Act, and it's only two pages long. It includes language that would prevent lenders from adding fees to "evade" the interest rate cap and sets penalties for violators, including a forfeiture of all interest o…

pip.hinman (2019-05-09). Trump ratchets up anti-immigrant campaign. greenleft.org.au While much of the media continues to focus on the Mueller report and the squabbles between the White House and the Democratic-controlled House of Representatives, US President Donald Trump's real crimes are scarcely addressed or are ignored altogether. | This column will take up one of these crimes, Trump's intensification of his racist war on immigrants. He is not alone on this — the ultra-right throughout Europe and elsewhere have similar anti-immigrant policies. | In recent weeks Trump has appointed new officials at the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).

Glenn Greenwald (2019-05-09). Watch: Interview With Democratic Congresswoman and 2020 Presidential Candidate Tulsi Gabbard. theintercept.com Ever since Tulsi Gabbard was first elected to Congress in 2012, she has been assertively independent, heterodox, unpredictable, and polarizing. Viewed at first as a loyal Democrat and guaranteed future star by party leaders — due to her status as an Iraq War veteran, a telegenic and dynamic young woman, and the first Hindu and Samoan-American elected to Congress — she has instead become a thorn in the side, and frequent critic, of those same leaders. | Gabbard's transformation from cherished party asset to party critic and outcast was rapid, and was due almost entirely to her insistence on following h…

pip.hinman (2019-05-09). 'Free Clarrie O'Shea': When unions broke the rules to change them. greenleft.org.au Fifty years ago, an industrial penal powers dispute provoked the biggest strike wave in Australia's post-war history. | On May 15, 1969, Clarrie O'Shea, Victorian secretary Australian Tramway & Motor Omnibus Employees' Association (ATMOEA), was jailed for refusing to pay fines imposed under the anti-union penal powers of the Conciliation and Arbitration Act. | Over the next week, more than 1 million workers went on strike to demand freedom for O'Shea and the repeal of the penal powers. | Tribune, the newspaper of the Communist Party of Australia at the time, reported on May 21, 1969: "The long struggle…

pip.hinman (2019-05-09). Rivers in crisis demand real water solutions now. greenleft.org.au A key federal election issue, which the carefully stage-managed leaders' debates are ignoring, is one on which all our lives depend: access to clean drinking water. | Our rivers are dying and our artesian basins are being poisoned because river water is being sold off at bargain basement rates to the major parties' corporate donors. | Corruption and water theft is just a part of how business is done in large parts of the Murray-Darling Basin. | Water security is vital for rural communities because water sourced from artesian bores and rivers is crucial for farming, especially as prolonged drought bites hard all t…

Janine Jackson (2019-05-09). 'How Does the US Compensate the World for the Damage It Has Done?' – CounterSpin interview with Basav Sen on beyond the Paris Accord. fair.org Janine Jackson interviewed Basav Sen about going beyond the Paris Climate Accord for the May 3, 2019, episode of CounterSpin. This is a lightly edited transcript. | Media…

Peter Greene (2019-05-09). Charter Schools Have a Big Problem, and Rebranding Won't Help. progressive.org Charters promised all sorts of miraculous educational achievements at low, low prices. But those achievements haven't appeared. More people are understanding that what we're really talking about is the privatization of our public school system.

Riaz Malik (2019-05-09). Obama's Frustration with Clinton Campaign Should be a Warning to Dems. mintpressnews.com Will Democrats stop wasting their time rehashing conspiracy theories and actually start opposing Trump on Venezuela? On mass surveillance? On tax breaks to the wealthy? On defense spending?

Ruth Conniff (2019-05-09). Trump's Contempt for Democracy is Pushing Congress Toward Impeachment. progressive.org Politically, it might make more sense to focus on the next election, but Constitutionally, Democrats in Congress have no choice but to go after Trump now.

Akela Lacy (2019-05-08). Democratic-Aligned Think Tank Knocks Bernie Sanders for Vote Aimed at Avoiding War With Iran. theintercept.com A mainstream, Democratic Party-aligned foreign policy think tank is knocking Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., for voting against new sanctions on Iran in 2017 — though the think tank itself and many members of its board oppose new Iran sanctions. | Sanders has been an outspoken supporter of the 2015 Iran nuclear deal and said at the time that he voted against the measure in…

stuart_m (2019-05-08). Fans stay away from Eurovision in Tel Aviv. greenleft.org.au An Israeli government-backed propaganda initiative is attempting to rig another online poll about whether there should be a boycott of the Eurovision Song Contest in Tel Aviv later this month. | This desperate effort to manipulate public opinion comes as Israeli organisers are struggling to unload thousands of unsold tickets to the event. | The Irish publication thejournal.ie put up a poll asking readers whether they support the boycott. | On April 30, t…

Janine Jackson (2019-05-08). 'Climate Change Is the Real Job Killer' – CounterSpin interview with Joe Uehlein on Green New Deal. fair.org "It's the best framework that we, in labor, have seen in a very long time for advancing workers' rights. It sets a federal jobs guarantee for people who want to go to work fighting the climate crisis, and it also provides for what they call living wages, or family-supporting wages, in that jobs guarantee."

John Nichols (2019-05-08). The DCCC's Plan to Punish Democrats for Backing Primary Challengers Is Sparking Major Backlash. thenation.com The DCCC's Plan to Punish Democrats for Backing Primary Challengers Is Sparking Major Backlash…

Staff (2019-05-08). Fear Mongering and Capitalism: A Recipe for Fascism? (1/2). therealnews.com The effort to sell security to the people of the US is based on stoking irrational fears, something Trump has taken to new extremes, but which Democrats are guilty of as well, explains Charles Derber, who discusses his new book…

Ryan Grim (2019-05-08). The Democratic Counterrevolution Has a Self-Appointed Leader: Josh Gottheimer. theintercept.com Not long after Rashida Tlaib and Ilhan Omar were sworn into Congress, they began hearing from their new colleagues that one member of the House Democratic caucus, Josh Gottheimer, had particularly strong views about each of them. Gottheimer, a second-term representative from New Jersey, has deep ties to the lobbies for Saudi Arabia and Israel, while Tlaib and Omar are often critical of both Mideast governments. | So when Gottheimer reached out to meet with Tlaib, she was eager to take it, hoping that a personal connection would help bridge their differences. On the day of the meeting, February 6, Gottheimer arriv…

pip.hinman (2019-05-08). Support needed for prison reform activist Jock Palfreeman on hunger strike. greenleft.org.au Jock Palfreeman, an Australian serving a 20-year jail sentence in Bulgaria on trumped-up murder charges, has been on a hunger strike since April 21. | There has been little news about Palfreeman because the Bulgarian prison authorities have gone to great lengths to cut off any communication he had with the outside world. | While Palfreeman is no newcomer to protest, including in prison, the lack of information about his condition is worrying. His family have been able to get updates through his lawyer Kalin Angelov, who has received sporadic phone calls from Palfreeman. Angelov says the hunger strike is serious a…

Democracy Now! (2019-05-07). After Florida Re-enfranchises 1.4 Million, Republicans Push New "Poll Tax" For Formerly Incarcerated. democracynow.org Civil rights groups are decrying what they say is a new poll tax after the Florida Senate passed a bill Friday that would require formerly incarcerated people with felony convictions to repay all fines and fees to courts before their voting rights are restored. This comes six months after voters in Florida approved a measure to restore voting rights to 1.4 million people with nonviolent felonies who have fully completed their sentences, overturning a Jim Crow-era law aimed at keeping African Americans from voting. Nearly 65 percent of voters approved the constitutional amendment to re-enfranchise people with form…

Democracy Now! (2019-05-06). Ex-Blackwater CEO Erik Prince Makes a Comeback Under Trump Selling Mercenary Armies Around the World. democracynow.org The House Intelligence Committee has sent a criminal referral to the Justice Department for Erik Prince, founder of the mercenary firm Blackwater. House Democrats are accusing Prince of lying to Congress during his November 2017 testimony before the Committee, when he described a meeting in the Seychelles with a Russian banker before Donald Trump's inauguration as a chance encounter. According to the Mueller report, the meeting was an attempt to establish a backchannel between the incoming Trump administration and Russia, and may have been arranged by the Trump team. The move is one of the latest actions placing…

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