Saturday, July 31, 2010

Arpaio's Goon Squad Continues Suppression Sweeps in Latino Neighborhoods

Arpaio and his masked goons' latest crime-suppression sweep netted 71 arrests, including six people who the goon squad says are suspected (in other words, didn't have their papers on them)of being in the country illegally. The two-day Valleywide "suppression sweep" in Latino neighborhoods which ended at midnight Friday, was somewhat delayed by civil protesters and (God-sent) monsoon storms.

The sweep was scheduled to start Thursday morning but was postponed for several hours while deputies dealt with civil protesters blocking roadways in downtown Phoenix. Dozens of civil activists protesting the state's new immigration law have been arrested this week for standing up for their righteous cause. SB 1070, partially went into effect Thursday. SB1070 makes it a misdemeanor offense for immigrants in Arizona not to carry registration papers, effectively allowing police to arrest a person on suspicion of being in the country illegally. But a federal judge blocked that portion of the law earlier in the week.

Arpaio has said he doesn't need the law to hold his suppression sweeps in Latino neighborhoods, which capture offenders for mostly minor, civil violations. The racial profiling "suppression sweep" operation marked the 17th time Arpaio has deployed hundreds of deputies and volunteer posse members in an area of the Valley to root out undocumented workers instead of going after felonious criminals. Deputies typically take a "zero tolerance" approach to traffic offenses and then check the criminal history of the motorists.

Arpaio's masked goon squad have arrested 1,003 people in their operations dating back to March 2008. Of those, 714 were suspected (no papers on them) of being in the country illegally,
according to the Sheriff's Office who did not provide actual numbers of those they arrested who were actually latino citizens vs undocumented workers.

The Atrocities of Sheriff Arpaio and his Goons: The Charles Agster Case

Arpaio is an evil man. As I have long reported, he has lost over $40M in lawsuits for Maricopa County because of wrongful deaths and mistreatment of prisoners. His tactics are worse than Guantanamo Bay or Abu Ghraib. It's important we remember his obscene and obsessive tactics as we watch the zoo-like behavior he is now displaying during his racial profiling "suppression sweeps" of Latino neighborhoods.

Here is the story of Charles Agster. In August 2001, Charles Agster, a 33-year-old mentally handicapped man died in Arpaio's jail three days after arpaio's goons forced him into a restraint chair worse than those in Guantanamo Bay.

The incident started when his parents decided to take Charles to a mental help facility when he started displaying odd behavior. On their way to the facility, they stopped at a convenience store. The mentally ill Charles would not leave the store and get back into the car. His mom and dad then called police. They thought the police might help them get their son back into the car so they could be on their way to the hospital. Instead, Arpaio's goons took Agster to the Madison Street jail, placed a terroristic "spit hood" over his face, cuffed him behind his back, dragged him across the floor and strapped him to the restraint chair, where, after he was cruelly restrained, the goons shoved his head forward between his legs until he stopped breathing. Unable to breathe, he lost consciousness. Not breathing, no assistance was provided to him for over five minutes. Finally the guards lay him on the ground and began to provide him CPR, all to no avail. Charles was in custody less than an hour and a half and he lay on the ground unconscious, not breathing. He was declared brain dead three days later. A subsequent lawsuit resulted in a $9 million jury verdict against the county, the sheriff's office, and Correctional Health Services.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Hate Crime Attacks Continue upon Latinos Across the U.S.: Murder & Theft Crimes Against Abelino Mazaniego

3 NJ teens charged with videotaped immigrant death
SUMMIT, N.J. — Dusk fell around hard working Salvadoran immigrant Abelino Mazaniego as he sat on a bench on a promenade in an upscale New York suburb after finishing his restaurant shift. As night encroached, so did a group of teenagers, including one with a cell phone videocamera at the ready. Then, authorities say, they beat him unconscious, with the camera rolling. Days later, the 47-year-old father of four was dead — but not before the video had been circulated among teenagers in Summit, N.J., authorities say. And not before a nurse in the emergency room where he was taken the night of July 17 was accused of pilfering several hundred dollars from his wallet. The attacks on Mazaniego's body and dignity resulted in days of escalating court actions that culminated Tuesday in murder charges against three young men, ages 17, 18 and 19. A fourth teenager believed to have videotaped the attack hasn't been charged, but authorities weren't divulging details on the teen's involvement or potential culpability.

In Summit on Tuesday evening, a young girl sobbed, trembled, and clutched the waist of an older woman as they stood in a group of five people in front of a shrine of sunflowers, votive prayer candles, handwritten notes and a photo of Mazaniego that had been placed on the bench where he was attacked. Speaking quietly in Spanish, a woman with red-rimmed eyes said she was Mazaniego's wife of 29 years, and the rest were family members. She declined to give her name, saying she was too upset and scared to speak about the attack. Mazaniego was "a hardworking, punctual, friendly employee," said Colin Crasto, manager and chef at Dabbawalla Indian restaurant, across the street from where the attack took place, and where the victim had worked for three years as a cook's assistant. A photo of Mazaniego was taped to the front window, with a message saying he had been the sole supporter of his family and asking patrons to donate money to help his family.

Along Summit's main thoroughfare, a place of upscale clothing and jewelry stores, real-estate brokerages advertising million-dollar homes, and luxury SUVS parked along the street, merchants and residents said the attack was an anomaly for the town, a vibrant mix of nationalities that considers itself welcoming of immigrants. "I know bad things happen all the time, everywhere, but it's unusual here," said Neil Rodriguez, the manager of The Wine List, who knew Mazaniego, as he worked a few doors down. Recalling Mazaniego as a "genial, really nice gentlemen."

Khayri Williams-Clark, 18, and an unidentified 17-year-old, both of Summit, were arrested Wednesday on manslaughter charges. Williams-Clark pleaded not guilty to the charge Friday. Now they're charged with murder, along with Nigel Dumas, 19, of Morristown. A spokesman for the public defender's office, which is representing Williams-Clark and the 17-year-old, declined to comment Tuesday and said the office hadn't yet received an application to represent Dumas. The 17-year-old is being held in the Union County juvenile detention center, while Williams-Clark is being held at the Union County jail on $100,000 bail, prosecutors said. Bail for Dumas, at the same jail, has been set at $250,000. Authorities wouldn't say how many teens were in the group or whether there would be more charges. They also weren't discussing theories on the motive for the beating — whether it was Mazaniego's background, a thrill killing or some other reason.

But it apparently wasn't an attempt to get the $640 in cash that Mazaniego was carrying. Police found the victim after the beating and took him to the hospital, where, officials say, nurse Stephan Randolph, 39, of Flemington, took the money out of the unconscious victim's wallet. Family members noticed the missing money and told authorities, who charged Randolph with third-degree theft Monday, six days after Mazaniego died.

sb1070: Portions NOT Blocked! Arpaio Pledges to Go Wild!

These are two big portions of sb1070 that were upheld:

- it still allows a separate crime charge for "harboring or transporting"
- it creates crime charge for "stopping a motor vehicle to pick up day laborers and for day laborers to get in a motor vehicle if it impedes the normal movement of traffic"

The ruling today was a good start, but there is still a lot left in the law that gives zealots like Arpaio & his masked goons as well as Looney Sheriff Babeu a wider net.

I will be tracking all actions of these two madmen and report their antics in my blog.

Arpaio and masked goons are planning a massive suppression sweep in Latino neighborhoods tomorrow. He has cleared several tents in a new section of tent city (in 120 degree heat) to house those he arrests. He plans to arrest hundreds tomorrow, if they don't have their papers on them as well as the two scenarios not blocked.

sb1070: BLOCKED

Judge Blocks Most Controversial Sections of sb1070
A federal judge dealt a serious blow to Arizona's immigration law on Wednesday when she put most of the crackdown ON HOLD just hours before it was to take effect. For now, opponents of the law have prevailed: The provisions that angered opponents will not take effect, including sections that required officers to check a person's immigration status while enforcing other laws.

Key parts of Senate Bill 1070 that will not go into effect Thursday:
•The portion of the law that requires an officer make a reasonable attempt to determine the immigration status of a person stopped, detained or arrested if there's reasonable suspicion they're in the country illegally.
•The portion that creates a crime of failure to apply for or carry "alien-registration papers."
•The portion that makes it a crime for illegal immigrants to solicit, apply for or perform work. (This does not include the section on day laborers.)
•The portion that allows for a warrantless arrest of a person where there is probable cause to believe they have committed a public offense that makes them removable from the United States.

"Requiring Arizona law enforcement officials and agencies to determine the immigration status of every person who is arrested burdens lawfully-present aliens because their liberty will be restricted while their status is checked," U.S. District Judge Susan Bolton said in her decision.

Unfortunately, renegade Sheriff Joe Arpaio of Maricopa County has already decided to go ahead and mount a crackdown on Thursday (tomorrow), hinting he'll instruct police forces under his command to enforce the law's harsh provisions regardless of what Bolton orders. And ironically, he's threatening to jail those who interfere.

So basically, he's going to punish those who practice civil disobedience by locking them up, whilst pulling an Andrew Jackson himself. Yeah, that makes perfect sense (well, it does to a radical right wing reactionary whose only allegiance is to an uncompromising strict-father worldview).

The text of Judge Bolton's order is available from our document vault. It's pretty satisfying to open it up and see that the case is titled United States of America, Plaintiff, v. State of Arizona, and Janice K. Brewer, Governor of the State of Arizona, in her Official Capacity, Defendants.

In deciding to only set aside parts of SB 1070, Judge Bolton reasoned:
The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals has concluded that allowing a state to enforce a state law in violation of the Supremacy Clause is neither equitable nor in the public interest. Cal. Pharmacists Ass’n v. Maxwell-Jolly, 563 F.3d 847, 852-53 (9th Cir. 2009); Am. Trucking Ass’ns, Inc. v. City of L.A., 559 F.3d 1046, 1059-60 (9th Cir. 2009). If Arizona were to enforce the portions of S.B. 1070 for which the Court has found a likelihood of preemption, such enforcement would likely burden legal resident aliens and interfere with federal policy. A preliminary injunction would allow the federal government to continue to pursue federal priorities, which is inherently in the public interest, until a final judgment is reached in this case. See Am. Trucking, 559 F.3d at 1059-60.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Poll says 62% of Arizonians Support Path to Citizenship

AZ Republic reports: One true thing rises above all the controversy over Senate Bill 1070: People know it is not the answer. Yes, polls show the state's ill-conceived immigration law is popular. But polls also show that the people understand complexities their political leaders ignore.

An Arizona Republic poll found:
. 62 percent support allowing illegal immigrants who are living here now to remain in the country if they have a job and no criminal record.
. The same poll found 55 percent of Arizonans support SB 1070.
. The strategy often damned as "amnesty" is more popular than the get-tough law.

This is not as contradictory as it may appear. SB 1070 masquerades as a law-and-order solution. People want order. So do we. This editorial page has been calling for a federal overhaul of the immigration system since 2002 out of the same desire to replace the current chaos with an enforceable system. Support for SB 1070 reflects bone-deep frustration with a broken system that brought death to our deserts and drophouses to our neighborhoods. The feds have the authority, the duty and the ability to reform immigration laws. They've been unable to stand up to a vocal minority that opposes comprehensive reform.

Yet our poll - like previous national polls - shows people favor the elements of comprehensive reform. Support for a path to legalization reflects an understanding that migrants crossed the border illegally on their way to jobs. Their labor contributed to our prosperity. Their spirit energized our communities. They are not disposable. They are human beings. And their labor continues to be an asset to our economy. Seventy-three percent of those polled favor a program to identify and put to work foreign workers when needed. This is the guest-worker component of comprehensive reform. It reflects the reality that our nation needs migrant workers.

The Republic's poll also shows people understand that controlling the border means controlling access to jobs. The vast majority of illegal border crossers come here to work - not collect benefits or ferry drugs. Sixty-six percent support a law to require employers to verify the legal status of existing employees. Arizona has an employer-sanctions law. The federal government has long required employers to verify worker status. What's needed is an effective law that will be enforced. States can't do this. Congress must.

Blocking access to jobs is the key to controlling illegal immigration. Channeling workers through the ports of entry would allow the Border Patrol to focus on the real bad guys. It will take years to resolve the court battles and sort out the social and political implications of Arizona's misbegotten immigration law. But public opinion is clear right now. The people of Arizona understand the complexity of a problem that politicians shrink down to bumper-sticker banality. Our poll shows that people want comprehensive immigration reform, despite years of efforts to discredit the idea.

Civil Disobedience Planned if sb1070 is Enacted

Rumor has it the Judge will make a ruling on the enactment of sb1070 within the next 24 hours. Sheriff Arpaio and his masked volunteer goons are ready for enactment of this racial profiling law. Arpaio has already announced the opening of a new tent prison facility for new detainees as a result of massive "suppression sweeps" he is planning in Latino neighborhoods. Imagine the Tent Prisons in 120 degree heat this summer. Arpaio is LAUGHING ABOUT IT!

Those opposed to the bill are also ready. Beyond the boycott of the state of Arizona, humanitarian groups across the nation are planning massive civil disobedience protests - similar to the 60's Civil Rights demonstrations against the Jim Crow laws - to test the bill. Rev. Al Sharpton's activists have promised to bring people to Arizona to protest "in the spirit of the Freedom Riders from the civil rights movement." Now Cesar Chavez' United Farm Workers of America (UFW) is pledging to do the same if this evil, racist law is enacted.
The Californian reports:
UFW prepares protest against Arizona law
Members of the United Farm Workers of America union in Salinas say they're preparing to travel to Phoenix — without identification — to test how police are enforcing that state's new immigration law. Efren Barajas, UFW vice president, said President Arturo Rodriguez will lead UFW chapters from Salinas, San Joaquin Valley, Oakland, Napa and Los Angeles when they arrive in Phoenix on Thursday. Maria Machuca, union communications director, said about 15 UFW members and staff are paying for their own traveling expenses. They will meet in Los Angeles at 4:30 a.m. Thursday, then leave for Phoenix. With the exception of a few drivers, the travelers, including Rodriguez, will leave all identification documents behind. "Having the president travel to Arizona and represent the union is meaningful," Barajas said.

Arizona's controversial immigration law, which goes into effect Thursday unless a federal judge says otherwise, would require police officers to question the immigration status of suspects stopped for another offense if there's a "reasonable suspicion" (= Arpaio's "suppression sweeps" = racial profiling) they are in the country illegally. Salinas union organizers plan to protest the new law. "We are participating in demonstrations to show support for those who oppose the law in Arizona," said Machuca. Officials said the UFW members do not plan to break any traffic laws or dress differently to attract the attention of police. However, Rodriguez plans on engaging in an act of civil disobedience if Arizona's Senate Bill 1070 becomes law.

SB 1070 appeared to strike Washington and the rest of the country like a thunderbolt when Gov. Jan Brewer signed it on April 23. But in Arizona, it was years in the making, just the latest manifestation of an increasing political antagonism toward illegal immigration. It was spurred by a perception that the federal government wasn't taking action on the issue.

A U.S. District Judge is considering some of the seven lawsuits filed to halt SB1070. The new law has stirred a national outcry over fears of widespread racial profiling. It has led to economic boycotts of Arizona as well as an outpouring of support and expressions of solidarity from supporters in other states. Machuca said the UFW members plan to join other groups in Phoenix such as the Los Angeles County Federation to participate in the St. Matthew's Parish Rally and the Downtown Civil Disobedience Action. "We need to end the fear and help improve the lives of the immigrant farm workers whose sweat and sacrifice bring the rich bounty of fresh fruits and vegetables to our tables," Machuca said.

Friday, July 23, 2010

NN 2010 Panel Discussion: Immigration Reform's Strange Bedfellows

NN 2010: The first panel discussion I attended was titled, "Immigration Reform's Strange Bedfellows: The surprising consensus that reform will improve American Jobs and bolster our economy." Panel members included: Mark Lauritsen from the UFCW who hosted the panel, AZ State Rep Krysten Sinema, Adam Luna from America's Voice, Andrea Nill from Think Progress and (my personal favorite) Sacramento Sheriff Art Venegas (ret).

Mark Lauritsen introduced himself and each member of the panel. Each panel member (Mark, Krysten, Adam, Andrea and Art) shared their background and their support for Comprehensive Immigration Reform (CIR) to be passed at the Federal level. Mark provided his background in the Meatpacking industry, the value of the migrant/guest workers and his opposition to exploitive employers. These employers are responsible for low wages and working conditions and they must be stopped. From his experience he knows how inhumane ICE raids are and how many citizens were racially profiled through these raids. He cited examples including the Swift raids and a raid where a citizen friend of his was racially profiled during a raid. He and the other panelists shared their views on the need for the passage of CIR. Each panel also cited the need to stop sb1070, a bill that will racially profile Latino citizens and criminalize friends and family members.

Rep Sinema, Andrea Nill and Adam Luna cited studies that indicated the revenue/sales taxes paid by undocumented workers which is far greater than the costs some nativist groups suggest they impose. They also cited studies which indicate these workers create jobs. Mark Lauritsen referenced the impact the ICE Raids had on Postville, Iowa and how these raids bankrupted the town.

Andrea Nill, a very knowledgeable young woman, connected the dots to identify who is behind sb1070 and the "ANTI" movement -- The John Tanton Network including CIS (research arm), FAIR (legal arm) and NumbersUSA (grassroots arm) and their FEAR Agenda. While they attempt to be mainstream, in reality they are extremists identified by the ADL and SPLC as Hate Groups.

The most impressive panel member was Sacramento Sheriff Art Venegas who is now retired, and is the Project Director for the "Law Enforcement Engagement Initiative (
LEEI)." From their website, the groups mission: "The Law Enforcement Engagement initiative (LEEI) was created to advance the dialogue towards common-sense immigration reform among policing professionals and for their voice of reason to be heard throughout America. The Law Enforcement Engagement Initiative works with professional law enforcement organizations and individual policing executives to educate the American people and its elected leaders on the real effects of a broken immigration system and its threat to our national security." Law enforcement from across the country have joined together in this group and have gone to Washington asking the Attorney General Eric Holder, the President and his Administration to stop sb1070 and clone laws being presented in other states. They request the Federal Government be responsible for enforcing and reforming Immigration laws.

Sheriff Venegas provided much needed details to the audience as to why sb1070 should not be passed. He asked all attendees to read the bill in detail and understand the implications. He explained the verbiage of the bill including "may" vs "shall" was very intentional and will ultimately result in racial profiling. He explained that beyond the racial profiling aspects of the bill, he also said friends and families will be criminalized and how citizens with an agenda are prompted to report those they "suspect" are illegal immigrants to police and if the police do not come, they can sue the police. (my long time viewers are familiar with these impacts of sb1070 since I've written about them so often). Sheriff Venegas also said sb1070 will force law enforcement to become immigration officers versus focusing on keeping the peace in their communities. Additionally, it is critical that law enforcement have eyes and ears in the community, and with the passage of sb1070, the undocumented will live in fear of the police and never assist law enforcement identify felonious criminals because they will live in fear of deportation. Additionally, the intent of the bill is Mass Deportation. The cost of Mass Deportation of 12M people plus their children has been calculated to be $20K per person, totalling $2.6 Trillion dollars!

Sheriff Venegas also talked about the need for all of us, from each Progressive group, from bloggers to activists to business to clergy -- from all ethnicities -- we must unite and become involved. We must read and understand the impact of sb1070. We must understand the negative impacts to our communities. We must get involved. Bloggers must blog so all of our viewers understand the bill, the costs and the ultimate detrimental impacts to the community. We must unite and support CIR being passed at the Federal level.

Afterwards, I spoke to the Sheriff's wife who was sitting close to me. I said I was impressed by her husband's words. I let her know I was already involved, studied the issues and write about them on my blog. Her husband joined us and I said I agreed with him. We needed many more people just like him so people understand the issues. He asked for and I provided him my blog address. He gave me his card and I promised to visit his website, which I have now placed on my blogroll. I invited him to be a "Guest Voz" here and hopefully he will be writing a blog for us very soon.

Note to viewers: Some might think only Latinos were in the audience for this panel. However, this was not the case. In fact, the majority of people in the audience were non-Latinos.

Netroots Nation 2010: A Sea of Multi Cultural Progressives - Organized, Mobilized and Energized, Ready to Make Positive Change for America!

I've been attending the Netroots Nation Convention in Las Vegas this week. Over 2000 people are here, organized, mobilized and energized, ready to make positive Change for America. Attendees are from all walks of life, supporting a variety of causes and sharing their concerns, goals and dreams for tomorrow. It has been an exciting week, with 70 panels, 30 training sessions from NN's Campaign Academy, a screening series, several caucuses and tons of parties and events.

Several well known speakers, democratic Senators and Representatives are participating on the panels, including Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reed, Al Franken and Raul Grijalva, just to name a few. Panel topics range from the economy, the environment, elections, health care, education and Immigration Reform. We've even had panels on the Gulf Oil Spill and How to Change the World - rocking on social networks.

It is amazing - the number of tech savvy young people here. I would say a good 50% of the attendees are under 25. Most carry their laptops or i-pads on their hips dressed in casual clothes looking like they just came from an MTV Rock the Vote rally. Unlike the Tea Parties, the attendees are a sea of color, all ages, energized and ready for positive change. They are not filled with hate or anger nor are they carrying hate-spewing signs. Instead they are chatting, texting, mobilizing and unifying to hear each other and join/support each others' causes.

Besides the panels, we held several caucuses including: Parents, Bloggers United, Women, American Indian, Latino, African American, Environmental, Israel-Palestine, AAPI, LGBT, Education, Youth, Women, Labor, by state, Immigration, People of Faith, OpenLeft. Each group spoke of their concerns, issues, and overall, how to unite with other progressives in supporting each others' causes.

From all of the Panels, Screenings, Caucuses and other events, each attendee was free to select which session they wanted to attend. I, of course, selected many of the Immigration events. Within the next couple of days, I will write about a few of the events I attended. I won’t be writing about the Big Time, Headline NN events or people that you’ve been reading about in the mainstream media. Instead, I will be writing about the quieter, smaller events that impressed me the most.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Ya Gotta Luv Sarah Palin! Sarah refuses to "repudiate" the term "refudiate" and PROVES that at least some of the Tea Partiers are Morans! reports: Sarah Palin's proving that she's learned something from former President George W. Bush: how to make up words to replace the real ones she can't think of. Palin's also proving the overall stupidity of the Tea Party Movement in the process, and has wrecked her chances at The White House in 2012, as if they really existed, anyway. The latest Palin gaffe is the use of "refudiate." As in "They could "refudiate" what this group is saying. What Former Alaska Governor Palin intended to say on Fox News' Sean Hannity's TV show called Hannity, was "repudiate," not "refudiate." Whatever the case, Sarah Palin's defending herself, and compares herself to Shakespeare on Twitter: "Refudiate," "misunderestimate," "wee-wee'd up." English is a living language. Shakespeare liked to coin new words too. Got to celebrate it!

This mistake has doomed any hope or dream Sarah Palin had of establishing a successful run for President of The United States. Rather than admit her error, she used Twitter to defend it, thus unwittingly fanning the already hot flames around her mistake. What could have been a non-issue after a day, has now been given legs that will last a week. In this, Palin proves the overall stupidity of the Tea Party people, some who are so intent on finding something wrong with President Obama, they lose all grip on common sense, sometimes to the point of making up words. The result is they paint themselves as not intelligent, and thus, not worth taking seriously.

Overall, I like Sarah Palin, but I continue to see her as a damaged person, rightfully angry over not being taken seriously, and making a lot of money from it. Bravo. But I wonder if her efforts are producing new PR blunders that just fuel her anger all over again. The bet here is Palin runs for President, just to "refudiate" the claims those, like me, make that she can't win. Sarah's an angry person. Just watch.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Using the ANTI's context for Illegal: America is Comprised of "Illegals"

I often read the comments of sb1070 supporters. They always say the same thing. "What is it about illegal that you don't understand?" Every time I read that sentence it makes me take a pause. Why? Because it is probably the lamest and stupidest argument anyone can make, yet they all say it.

My response to them: "Oh I understand the word very well, do you? Illegal. An adjective meaning forbidden by law or statute. Many people misunderstand the term and misuse it often. Sometime they use it as a noun, calling human beings "Illeegal." It is an adjective. An adjective is a part of speech that modifies a noun or a pronoun. Do you want to combine this adjective with a noun? Do you want to use alien with it? Alien, the noun meaning non-citizen? Well the correct term may be non-citizen. However, if you use the adjective "illegal" for everyone who commits a civil violation or misdemeanor or felony, whether they have been charged or not, then everyone in America, having committed some sort of civil violation or misdemeanor or felony is an illegal citizen or non-citizen."

"So you see, I do understand every part of the term "illegal." If you choose to use "illegal" in your context, then we have a Country full of illegals, including YOU!"

Utah Extremists Upset Over Prayer in Spanish! (1st the Illegal List! Now Upset over Prayers!) reports: HYRUM, Utah (AP) -- The Hyrum City Council is being criticized for allowing the closing prayer at the city's Fourth of July program to be given in Spanish. Councilwoman Stephanie Miller was in charge of coordinating the city's Independence Day celebration. Miller said she didn't intend to offend anyone, but wanted to accommodate the nervous Spanish-speaking pastor asked to deliver the prayer. Maria Montalvo, of Hyrum's Church of God Ebenezer, asked if the prayer could be offered in Spanish and translated into English. "She does speak some English, but she was uncomfortable with standing in front of everyone and speaking English," Miller said. "She asked if we would mind if she did it in Spanish, and we didn't see that there was a problem with that as long as it was translated."
The decision has been criticized as unpatriotic and wrong in a flurry of recent letters to the Logan Herald Journal. One letter, from LaVon G. Hanson, a World War II veteran from Logan, called for the city council to be "impeached and sent to Mexico."

Councilman Paul James said he was surprised to hear the Spanish prayer but didn't think it was inappropriate, "because listening to the prayer, it was very patriotic." Miller said she has apologized to some critics, but does not regret the decision. Still, she said she won't have the prayer offered in Spanish next year.

And while some have suggested that the city bar prayers of any kind at the patriotic program, Miller said that won't happen. "We are Americans (and have) freedom of religion," she said. "We're not forcing anybody to participate that doesn't want to."

National Tea Party Leader (who is Black) Kicks Out Tea Party Express & Mark Williams over his "Colored People" Letter!

NY Daily News Reports: Racism is tearing the Tea Party movement apart. The National Tea Party Federation has expelled a prominent activist group, the Tea Party Express, because it wouldn't rebuke and fire one of its leaders for writing an offensive blog post. Mark Williams, a California radio host who is leading protests in New York against a proposed mosque near Ground Zero and has drawn Sarah Palin to his rallies, had previously called the President an "Indonesian Muslim turned welfare thug" and said Muslims were "animals" who worship "a monkey god." But when he posted a letter (he claims is satirical) this week from "the Colored People" to President Lincoln about how little they want to work, that crossed the line - especially after the NAACP called on Tea Party leaders to oust racists from their ranks.

Today, on "Face the Nation," the National Tea Party Federation spokeman David Webb (who is black) said, "We have expelled Tea Party Express and Mark Williams from the National Tea Party Federation because of the letter that he wrote." Webb called Williams' July 14 letter "clearly offensive." In the letter Williams wrote in what he said was the voice of slaves: "Mr. Lincoln, you were the greatest racist ever. We had a great gig. Three squares, room and board, all our decisions made by the massa in the house. We Coloreds have taken a vote and decided that we don't cotton to that whole emancipation thing. Freedom means having to work for real, think for ourselves, and take consequences along with the rewards. That is just far too much to ask of us Colored People and we demand that it stop! Please repeal the 13th and 14th Amendments and let us get back to where we belong." On taxes, Williams added, "How will we Colored People ever get a wide screen TV in every room if non-coloreds get to keep what they earn? .. Bailouts are just big money welfare and isn't that what we want all Coloreds to strive for?" Williams has since removed the letter, replacing it with a note urging followers to "fight those who seek to divide us by race."

Williams did not immediately respond to a request for comment Sunday afternoon. NAACP President Benjamin Jealous told CNN that other Tea Party leaders besides Webb, who is African American, should come out against racist elements in the movement. "We hope that the household names, Sarah Palin and so forth, will come forward and say the same thing," Jealous said, later adding: "We don't think the Tea Party is racist, but we don't think they've gone far enough yet either."

CNN reports: Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Kentucky, steered clear of the issue, saying: "I am not interested in getting into that debate."

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Locked & Loaded Neo-Nazis Patrolling the Border Holding Latinos Like Animals in the Desert and Arizona says it is OK

PTN Reports: Arizona neo-Nazis J.T. Ready and Harry Hughes have apparently been busy to judge by a recent item on Hughes' blog "Just Another Day... " There, he's posted photos of Ready, himself and others wearing camouflage and toting high-powered firearms as they watch over 11 illegal aliens that Hughes claims the group encountered Wednesday.

Hughes states that they came across the migrants while on an "illegal alien/drug smuggler patrol in the Sonoran Desert National Monument." He writes that his group encountered the men sitting under a water tank in "an abandoned cattle watering area," and that the migrants "quickly gave themselves up" to the neo-Nazis.

According to his blog, Hughes and the others gave the migrants water and notified the Pinal County Sheriff's Office and the U.S. Border Patrol, which took custody of the men. There is a photo of a Border Patrol agent searching a migrant on Hughes' site. Tim Gaffney, a spokesman for PCSO, told me that the sheriff's office received a call from J.T. Ready on Wednesday. Patrol deputies were dispatched, but Border Patrol arrived at the scene first and handled the situation.

Characteristically, Border Patrol was not able to confirm that it responded to the call. I asked Border Patrol spokeswoman Colleen Agle if her agency had any qualms about having migrants turned over to it by known neo-Nazis. "We take all citizens' calls seriously," she replied. "Whether it's a group of citizens or an individual, we're going to go check it out." This is the second time a J.T. Ready-led patrol has encountered migrants in the desert. In June, he staged a patrol of the Vekol Valley, encountering at least one live migrant and one dead body.

Should we be concerned about hate groups roaming the desert on "illegal alien" patrols? I think so. At the very least, the authorities should be monitoring the activities of Ready and his SS-wannabes.

"Sweetums" Outed as Law Breaking Member of "Concerned Citizens of the US" who Racially Profiled Latino Citizens a la sb1070

In April, a group of law-breakers calling themselves "Concerned Citizens of the United States" (CCUS) illegally stole a LIST with the names, addresses, social security numbers and other private information of 1300 Latinos living in Utah from a government data base and sent the list to ICE claiming the Latinos on the list were all "illeegals."

Three months later, on Monday, July 12, when ICE hadn't arrested anyone on the list, the CCUS sent this same LIST to law enforcement, news media and politicians around the state. ABC 4 reported and later confirmed, the data source was from the Department of Social Services. The list also included pregnancies and due dates and stated: "some of the women on the list are pregnant at this time and steps should be taken for immediate deportation."

This racial profiling list was stolen from a government database by at least two government employees who have now been suspended pending further investigation. Investigators have determined that many people on the list are legal citizens or in legal residency status. The only common factor of all the names on this list is the fact they all have hispanic surnames.

If sb1070 is enacted in Arizona, citizens are encouraged to report anyone they suspect as "illeegal" to Law Enforcement. With sb1070, if police do not respond, then they could be sued by the person reporting this information. One can only speculate how often LISTS, such as the one created by CCUS, will be created with Latino surnames, racially profiling innocent citizens by those with an agenda.

Salt Lake City examiner has reported "Some speculations suggest that at least one of the implicated vigilantes is also’s self proclaimed, “law abiding, god fearing, honest racist,” codename sweetums." I checked's database and found the profile for Sweetums. Sweetums has written several negative comments about Latinos and has outed herself as a State Dept of Social Services worker who frequently accesses the government databases to play private eye, then reveals her findings on KSL's website. Read her comments.

Every day I see hundreds of very negative, very racist commenters in comment sections, blogs and discussion boards who support sb1070, including the "citizen's arrest" section of the bill. Imagine, if sb1070 is enacted in states across the nation, we can only expect to see more of the same racial profiling antics as CCUS by like minded zealots of "Sweetums" who will perform LIST gathering of latino names - including citizen latino names in each state passing this racial profiling law. This is another reason we need the Federal Government to pass Comprehensive Immigration Reform (CIR).

First Day of sb1070 hearing Disastrous for Brewer (La Bruja) and Cohorts

TUCSON (KGUN9-TV - One day after the first SB1070 court hearing there are new questions about how police will actually enforce the law. Nine On Your Side's Steve Nunez poured over his notes from the hearing and found testimony from the governor's own attorney that could deal a blow to the law's future. Judge Susan Bolton admitted the provision to "stop, detain, and arrest" is the most contentious part of Arizona's immigration law.

At issue: how long can an officer detain a person before determining immigration status?
Governor Brewer's Attorney John Bouma could not give an answer. He did say SB1070 still gives officers the option to call ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement) when reasonable.

Santa Cruz County Sheriff Tony Estrada says if that's the case he can then continue to do what he's been doing for years: turn illegal's over to Border Patrol. Nunez asked Estrada: "What's the difference between stopping someone for a civil violation, writing a ticket and letting them go and stopping someone for a civil violation, writing a ticket but then questioning them for immigration status?"

Estrada answered, "With a civil violation you can't hold anybody and they can refuse to sign, for example, a traffic ticket. On a criminal violation they don't have an option if they don't sign it they get arrested."

Under SB1070, that means a person, including a legal resident alien or U.S. Citizen who fails to provide immigration papers or a valid driver's license, could be indefinitely detained until they can prove their legal status. Judge Bolton also raised the question: would undetermined detention time violate constitutional laws that restrict unreasonable detentions?

Immigration Attorney John Messing said the fact Governor Brewer's legal team could not answer this question blows a big hole in their defense case. "Because the constitution says you can't hold people without making an initial appearance within 24 hours that's the way Arizona structured its criminal code. If Governor Brewer's attorney's lose this initial salvo I think certain momentum will be built into the case that at the district court level could be disastrous for their side," said Messing. Messing now believes SB1070 will be challenged all the way to the Supreme Court.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Chupacabras in Texas

The internet is abuzz with Chupacabra sightings in Hood County in Texas. This week, a pair of chupcabras were found on a Hood County ranch.

A Hood County Rancher heard growling sounds coming from inside his barn. When he went to inspect the sounds, he found a pair of ugly creatures which resembled Chupacabras.

He ran back to his house, found his shotgun, then shot them. Later he called animal control and an officer arrived at the scene.

The animals were so ugly even the officer described the creatures as appearing to be the legendary chupacabras. Chupacabras are said to be mythical creatures. Seeing is believing. Look at the pictures. They look like Chupacabras to me!

Saturday, July 10, 2010

The Real Border Issue: Arrest Drug Lords Not Landscapers!

Most people who advocate sealing of the Mexican border have never been to a border town. In border towns, hundreds if not thousands of people cross the footpaths and streets back and forth, to and from Mexico. People shop and do business daily. This is called commerce and border-living. Families, cousins, brothers, sisters, mothers, daughters, fathers, sons, live on both sides. When one visits a border town, there isn't much security leaving the U.S. There is much more security coming back in. Border Patrol man the booths along the border entries and patrol the border fences and barriers, both on foot and via vehicles. They also have electronic and video surveillance along well travelled points of entry and paths. Additionally, about 10 miles in from the border, there are Border Patrol booths set up to check the IDs of everyone travelling back into the U.S. from border towns.

Anyone who lives along the border will tell you. People who live along the border, people of all colors and ethnicities, have very good relationships with residents on both sides of the border. However, about 10 years ago, with the increase of drug use in America, a new group of travellers migrated both ways across the border. These are the drug cartels. Anyone who lives along the border will tell you, there is a huge difference between those that come here to work and those that carry drugs across the border. The drug carriers carry or sneak in by vehicle, bales of marijuana, meth, marjuana laced with meth and cocaine. They also carry prescription pills including vicodin and percocet/oxycontin. Many of these drug carriers are American citizens, like the Bowen family, and also take guns/weapons and ammunition back into Mexico to provide to the cartels. You see, Americans help finance both sides of the Mexican drug war by purchasing illegal drugs and smuggling weapons.

The residents on both sides of the border want the cartels to stop. They want America to stop using drugs. They want the cartels to stop delivering drugs. Most of all, they want the violence to end.

You would think anyone familiar with the situation on the border would understand what is happening. Reports from both sides of the border indicate the majority of the violence is in Mexico and has not crossed over to the U.S. side of the border. Violent Crime is down in the U.S., particularly in border states. However, extremists and sb1070 supporters want you to believe otherwise. They want you to believe border violence has increased. They exploited the murder of rancher Robert Krentz and want you to believe all "illeegals" are responsible for his death when in fact the police don't know who committed the crime and believe it was someone from the U.S. since the tracks went from North to South.

The zealots also exploited the so-called shooting of Deputy Puroll. Tapes have recently surfaced regarding his explanation of the shooting. The tape totally conflicts with early reports of the shooting provided by his spokesperson Tammy Villar. Yet, this shooting also is blamed on all "illeegals." Their lies are set up to instill fear and terror into border residents. They believe in the political adage, "If you tell a lie often enough, it becomes the truth."

The facts are: we have a drug problem in the U.S. We are the number one abuser of drugs in the world. Drug cartels from China, Columbia, Brazil, the Middle East, Russia, Venezuela, etc. are falling all over themselves to be our drug provider. We have a Drug problem in the U.S., not an "illegal immigration" problem. Border Security is a big factor in that we need to STOP the flow of drugs from coming into our country and we need to stop the flow of weapons, money and cash back to the Cartels both here and in Mexico.

The facts are: sb1070 has NOTHING to do with stopping drugs or even securing the border. The primary intent of sb1070 is to Mass Deport all the "illeegals" in Arizona and their citizen children too. It also criminalizes citizen friends and families of the 11M here. It also encourages citizens to become amateur Border Patrol by encouraging them to call the police every time they see who they suspect is an "illeegal" (aka brown person).

The worst part of sb1070 is it deters police resources from going after the real danger, the drug cartels. Instead, if sb1070 is enacted, Law Enforcement will be doomed to spend their time, as arpaio and his masked goons do, in terrorizing latino neighborhoods with suppression sweeps. No time to hunt down the felonious drug lords on both sides of the border. Jails will be filled with landscapers and restaurant workers. No room for violent drug dealers.

Why don't people understand the truth? We have a DRUG problem, not a migrant worker problem. We need our Border Patrol Agents and Law Enforcement focused on targetting felonious criminals, especially drug cartels and drug dealers, not conduct round-ups in well established latino neighborhoods rounding up agjob workers and cooks.

Remove the xenophobia and restrictionist attitude from the work that needs to be done. Allow the 11M to come out of the shadows, pay a fine and begin steps to apply for legal status. Let's bring some sense back to the immigration discussion. We need the Federal Government to pass CIR.

The Obama Administration has made a good start. On a visit to Mexico in March by several senior Obama administration officials, including Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton; Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates and Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano; they met with key Mexico officals and expanded on and improved programs already under way as part of the Mérida Initiative that was started by the Bush administration including cooperation among American and Mexican intelligence agencies and American support for training Mexican police officers, judges, prosecutors and public defenders.

Under the new strategy, American and Mexican agencies will work together to refocus border enforcement efforts creating systems that allow goods and people to be screened before they reach the crossing points. The plan also provides support for Mexican programs intended to strengthen communities where socioeconomic hardships force many young people into crime. The most striking difference between the old strategy and the new one is the shift away from military assistance. More than half of the $1.3 billion spent under Merida was used to buy aircraft, inspection equipment and information technology for the Mexican military and police. Next year's foreign aid budget provides for civilian police training vs equipment. Military-to-military cooperation was expected to continue. This revised strategy will first go into effect in Tijuana and Ciudad Juárez, the largest cities on Mexico's border with the United States. Ciudad Juárez, a city of 1.7 million, has become a symbol of the Mexican government's failed attempts to rein in the drug gangs. Finally the Administration is focusing on the right issues. Stop the drug cartels. Nip them in the bud. Partner with Mexico to stop the cartels at inception. On the American side, do the same. Infiltrate, Arrest and stop them!

Friday, July 9, 2010

Question: Why is it OK for Police to KILL Minorities? -- Analysis of the BART Shooting in Oakland, CA

A Minority is murdered. The perp goes virtually scot Free!
I've been reading about the BART Police shooting in Oakland, CA today. This is so similar to so many other racial profiling abuses that it causes one to wonder, why is it ok for Police to be so brutal and escalate the level of violence against minority perps? Let's study this case.

It was the early morning hours of New Years Day. A group of very young men were returning home, on a train. They tussled on the train. BART police were called. The BART police hustled the young men onto the platform, detained and cuffed them. Oscar Grant, a young black father, was on the ground, being cuffed. One of the BART Cops, Johannes Mehserle, took out his gun and shot and murdered unarmed, young Grant, shooting him in the back as he lay on the ground. The cops shouted these racial words at him, "
Bitch-ass nigger."

Out of all the ludicrous excuses for the murder, Mehserle said, "I thought I was shooting him with my taser." Wow! What a lame excuse, especially since he was not armed with a taser. However, the jury with no blacks did not find him guilty of murder or even manslaughter. Instead, they issued a hand slap. They merely found him guilty of INVOLUNTARY manslaughter, a minor offense which harbors a minimal penalty vs murder. One cannot help but consider what would have happened had this been a White victim by Black corrupt cops.

Minorities are protesting in the streets in Oakland. It is no wonder that Michelle Malkin and Fox are now resurrecting 2008 footage of Black Panthers on their websites to counter the damage done here.

Guest Voz - Jon Stewart: Video "Latino 911" aka "Latinos are F**cked!"

The Daily Show With Jon StewartMon - Thurs 11p / 10c
Latino 911!
Daily Show Full EpisodesPolitical HumorTea Party

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Wise Words from Economist Paul Krugman: Republicans Heartless & Clueless in Voting NO for Unemployment Extensions There was a time when everyone took it for granted that unemployment insurance, which normally terminates after 26 weeks, would be extended in times of persistent joblessness. It was, most people agreed, the decent thing to do. But that was then. Today, American workers face the worst job market since the Great Depression, with five job seekers for every job opening, with the average spell of unemployment now at 35 weeks. Yet the Senate went home for the holiday weekend without extending benefits. How was that possible? The answer is that we’re facing a coalition of the heartless, the clueless and the confused. Nothing can be done about the first group, and probably not much about the second. But maybe it’s possible to clear up some of the confusion.

By the heartless, I mean Republicans who have made the cynical calculation that blocking anything President Obama tries to do — including, or perhaps especially, anything that might alleviate the nation’s economic pain — improves their chances in the midterm elections. Don’t pretend to be shocked: you know they’re out there, and make up a large share of the G.O.P. caucus. By the clueless I mean people like Sharron Angle, the Republican candidate for senator from Nevada, who has repeatedly insisted that the unemployed are deliberately choosing to stay jobless, so that they can keep collecting benefits. A sample remark: “You can make more money on unemployment than you can going down and getting one of those jobs that is an honest job but it doesn’t pay as much. We’ve put in so much entitlement into our government that we really have spoiled our citizenry.” Now, I don’t have the impression that unemployed Americans are spoiled; desperate seems more like it. One doubts, however, that any amount of evidence could change Ms. Angle’s view of the world — and there are, unfortunately, a lot of people in our political class just like her.

But there are also, one hopes, at least a few political players who are honestly misinformed about what unemployment benefits do — who believe, for example, that Senator Jon Kyl, Republican of Arizona, was making sense when he declared that extending benefits would make unemployment worse, because “continuing to pay people unemployment compensation is a disincentive for them to seek new work.” So let’s talk about why that belief is dead wrong.

Do unemployment benefits reduce the incentive to seek work? Yes: workers receiving unemployment benefits aren’t quite as desperate as workers without benefits, and are likely to be slightly more choosy about accepting new jobs. The operative word here is “slightly”: recent economic research suggests that the effect of unemployment benefits on worker behavior is much weaker than was previously believed. Still, it’s a real effect when the economy is doing well. But it’s an effect that is completely irrelevant to our current situation. When the economy is booming, and lack of sufficient willing workers is limiting growth, generous unemployment benefits may keep employment lower than it would have been otherwise. But as you may have noticed, right now the economy isn’t booming — again, there are five unemployed workers for every job opening.
Cutting off benefits to the unemployed will make them even more desperate for work — but they can’t take jobs that aren’t there.

Wait: there’s more. One main reason there aren’t enough jobs right now is weak consumer demand. Helping the unemployed, by putting money in the pockets of people who badly need it, helps support consumer spending. That’s why the Congressional Budget Office rates aid to the unemployed as a highly cost-effective form of economic stimulus. And unlike, say, large infrastructure projects, aid to the unemployed creates jobs quickly — while allowing that aid to lapse, which is what is happening right now, is a recipe for even weaker job growth, not in the distant future but over the next few months.

But won’t extending unemployment benefits worsen the budget deficit? Yes, slightly — but as I and others have been arguing at length,
penny-pinching in the midst of a severely depressed economy is no way to deal with our long-run budget problems. And penny-pinching at the expense of the unemployed is cruel as well as misguided.

So, is there any chance that these arguments will get through? Not, I fear, to Republicans: “It is difficult to get a man to understand something,” said Upton Sinclair, “when his salary” — or, in this case, his hope of retaking Congress — “depends upon his not understanding it.” But there are also centrist Democrats who have bought into the arguments against helping the unemployed. It’s up to them to step back, realize that they have been misled — and do the right thing by passing extended benefits.

Why Republicans are Blocking (Voting NO) on the Unemployment Extensions Act

Through my research, I've found out the true reason Republicans are blocking the unemployment extensions act. It is also the same reason my "USA Jobs for Americans Plan & Honors Program" will never be passed. Why? Because many politicians, especially Republicans, are in bed with Big Business and their lobbies. Before I provide you the reason, let me share with you two responses my husband and I received about our Jobs Plan. While everyone who has read the plan thinks it is a great idea, when my husband talked about it with his bowling buddies, they too agreed it was a good idea, however they said it will never happen because Big Business will never agree to it. End of story. The second response was from a very strong PRO proponent. His response said it was a wonderful idea but I was Mother Teresa and I just did not understand the treachery and greed of Big Business. End of story.
I try not to be a Pollyanna. I still have a glint of hope for America. I try to believe that some US based businesses are on the people's side. I try to believe that at least some of them want to keep jobs, the jobs Americans want, IN America. I try to believe that at least some will bring jobs back from outsourced - offshore countries.

Then, through my research, I came across one economist's view of the bill before Congress. The economist's name is Robert Oak and he wrote an article about
H.R. 4213, the bill we refer to as the Unemployment Extension Act. It was originally called "American Workers, State and Business Relief Act of 2010." Today, it is called, "American Jobs and Closing Tax Loopholes Act of 2010."
If Oak is right, then Big Business, their lobbies and corrupt politicians, particularly Republicans, will NEVER vote for this bill and will do all in their power to prevent its passage. Their goal is to continue to offshore and to continue to reap massive profits in offshore banks via these loopholes. The saddest part is, my husband's friends, my PRO commenter and most Americans know this, yet refuse to address the subject or ever let this subject see the light of day. They will NOT hold these businesses or their lobbyists accountable. Instead, we allow these same zealots to control the conversation and instead blame all of our lost jobs and economic woes on those who come here to pick fruit and vegetables. What kind of sheep are we if we allow this lack of accountability to continue?
Economist Oak said:
A little observed provision (in HR4213) is to remove the tax incentives to offshore outsource your job..The legislation ties corporate revenues directly to the foreign tax credit. If passed, no longer can a corporation claim credits for foreign taxes yet park the actual profits made offshore in a low tax country. Previously corporations claimed the foreign tax credits, yet only to reduce their U.S. tax liability. The actual foreign revenues were not repatriated into the United States. If one obtains tax credits yet doesn't have to actually pay tax on profits accrued offshore, this encourages the movement of capital, assets and production overseas, including jobs.
Multinational corporations will do everything in their power to strip out these changes and so will the powerful NASSCOM, or Indian offshore outsourcing business group and their U.S. lobbying counterpart, USINPAC.
Expect war from our Benedict Arnold Tech Companies such as IBM, Microsoft and HP. IBM literally has an algorithm to manipulate global tax structures and has been firing every American who isn't nailed to their desk. HP just announced 9000 more layoffs. Their mammoth lobbying efforts are amazing because the bill extends the R&D tax credit, which greatly benefits these very same companies.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Explaining the Impact of Republicans Voting NO on Unemployment Extensions

One of my anonymous posters posted this ludicrous comment about Republicans voting NO on extending unemployment which goes to show you how uninformed Republicans and their supporters are. He said, "Geez, those being cut off have been on unemployment for a year and a half. All others will still get their unemployment checks.You can't live on unemployment forever anymore than you can live on welfare forever."

He is so wrong!

Here is
how the process works. If you become unemployed, once you qualify and are approved, you receive the standard 26 weeks Unemployment Insurance (UI) benefits. After that, because of our high rate of unemployment, Congress passed 3 tiers of Emergency Unemployment Benefits (EUC) and one additional Extended Benefits (EB).
EUC Tier 1: 20 weeks.
EUC Tier 2: 14 weeks.
EUC Tier 3: 13 weeks.
EB: 20 weeks.

Since Congress has not extended Federal Emergency Unemployment Compensation (EUC), no new claims are able to be added. This means that when you complete a Tier, you cannot apply for the next Tier of benefits. Your benefits stop until/unless Congress approves extended benefits. Therefore, once you finish your standard unemployment (26 weeks) you cannot apply for additional tiers or EB. Or if you are in the middle of a Tier, once you complete that Tier, you cannot apply for another. Each week that Congress does not approve the extensions, millions more will fall off. Many will drop off at the end of 26 weeks. Many will drop off once they complete the Tier they are on.

With unemployment rates hovering at about 10% nationally and the job outlook appearing bleak, with only 1 job for every 5 unemployed, it is heartless and inhumane to expect our unemployed to survive without unemployment extensions. Economists indicate these monies boost the economy with a return rate of $1.6 for every dollar provided.

Republicans do not care about the Americans they are impacting. They continue to be the party of NO. They do not care that Americans are starving and in need of unemployment insurance. I've researched and studied a number of comment sections focusing on these extensions not passing. All commenters blame Republicans. I agree with them.

Guest Voz - Ryann Witt: Overt Racist Limbaugh Attributes Oprah and Obama's success to their Race

Today Rush Limbaugh responded to RNC Chairman Michael Steele's comments on Afghanistan by talking about Steele's race, and the race of President Obama. Even Oprah got brought into the mix when Limbaugh tried to explain how African-Americans benefit from the color of their skin.

According to Limbaugh, President Obama never would have become President, and Oprah never would have become wealthy if they were not African-Americans. Limbaugh attributes their success to "white guilt." For those not familiar with the nuances of racist rhetoric, "white guilt" is the idea that whites feel the need to make up for previous injustices to minorities by rewarding minorities today.

However, a closer look at the biographies of Oprah, Limbaugh, and President Obama seem to not mesh well with Limbaugh's "white guilt" theory.

Winfrey hardly grew up in a privileged manner. She was born in rural Mississippi to a teenage single mother and grew up in poverty in Milwaukee's inner-city. She landed a meager job in radio at the age of 19. Eventually she would get a local day-time television show in Chicago. Oprah worked 13 years in the industry before earning a nationally televised talk show.

Limbaugh, like Winfrey, had no formal education in broadcasting before getting his first radio job at the age of 16. He was born to a family with significant political connections with the Republican party. It took Winfrey over 13 years before she gained a national syndication. Limbaugh was in radio broadcasting on and off (from being fired or quitting) for approximately six years in the talk show host business before he would obtain a national broadcast. This means Winfrey had to work twice as long as Limbaugh before being "handed" her wealth by guilty white people under Limbaugh's reasoning.

President Obama was also hardly born into a privileged home. As has now been well-documented, the President's parents divorced when he was young and he saw very little of his father. He was raised by his mother and grandparents in what could optimistically be called a middle-class lifestyle. He graduated from Columbia University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in international relations and political science. He then worked as a community organizer on the streets of Chicago performing, among other things, duties related to job training and tenants' rights. He was then admitted to Harvard University Law School (not an easy task for anyone white, black, orange, or purple) where he was editor and president of Harvard Law Review. Later he would serve as a civil rights attorney and assistant professor, before becoming State Senator for eight years, and a U.S. Senator for four years. Anyone who watched the hotly contested primary battle between Hillary Clinton and President Obama knows that he was not exactly handed the nomination by the Democratic elite.

Yet, under Limbaugh's reasoning, President Obama was able to do all these things simply because he was African-American. All of President Obama's college professors gave him good grades because of his color. The Harvard Law Review installed President Obama as editor, and later promoted him to President because he was black. The President won every election because of the color of his skin (despite the failures of people like Jesse Jackson to do the same).

This is the philosophy of Rush Limbaugh, and those who attribute black success to white guilt. Essentially, they claim whites earned their rewards, while blacks were given whatever they have.

DOJ Files Lawsuit Against Arizona's Racial Profiling Bill sb1070

As expected, the U.S. Department of Justice filed suit in Federal District court today against the state of Arizona and Gov Jan Brewer over the racial profiling bill sb1070. (see .pdf here) In the lawsuit, the DOJ "seeks to declare (sb1070) invalid" because sb1070 is preempted by Federal law and therefore violates the Supremacy Clause of the U.S. Constitution. The Supremacy Clause asserts and establishes the Constitution as supreme law of the land and Federal laws are made in pursuance of the Constitution. Therefore Federal laws are the highest form of law in the land. The DOJ's action holds that the federal government has long been acknowledged as having purview over immigration-related matters and sb1070 preempts the Federal law. In the American legal system, if a state law preempts Federal law, both Federal and State courts must uphold Federal law.

The lawsuit reads: "In our constitutional system, the federal government has preeminent authority to regulate immigration matters. This authority derives from the United States Constitution and numerous acts of Congress.. Although states may exercise their police power in a manner that has an incidental or indirect effect on aliens, a state may not establish its own immigration policy or enforce state laws in a manner that interferes with the federal immigration laws. The Constitution and the federal immigration laws do not permit the development of a patchwork of state and local immigration policies throughout the country." This lawsuit asks the court to declare sb1070 "null and void, and to enjoin the state of Arizona from enforcing the statute."

This lawsuit should not be a surprise to anyone. The President said in early June and he reiterated last Thursday that we cannot have "a patchwork of state and local immigration policies."

The President said, "I think (SB 1070) puts American citizens who look Hispanic or are Hispanic, potentially in an unfair situation, and more importantly, it also creates the prospect of 50 different laws in 50 different states when it comes to immigration." I agree with the President.

There are several lawsuits filed by the ACLU, MALDEF and the NAACP due to be heard on July 22.

sb1070 is due to be enacted on July 29. However, if the Federal judge issues a preliminary injunction in the case, it will lessen the threat of this racial profiling bill being enacted on that date.

President Obama: "Republicans Holding Unemployment Extensions Hostage"

President Obama has lashed out at Senate Republicans regarding their "cold-hearted" efforts to block relief for unemployed Americans. He said they were “using their power to hold this relief (to unemployed Americans) hostage.” Currently, a new unemployment extension package lies in wait in the Senate with hopes of swift action next Monday, when Congress returns from the Fourth of July recess. The package is a much scaled down version of the previous version. The sponsors of the new bill - H.R. 5618, Rep. Jim McDermott (D-WA) a long time supporter of the nation’s workforce along with House Ways and Means Chairman Sander Levin (D-MI) worked hard to get a bill that would bring much needed relief to America’s unemployed workers.

President Obama, referencing the unemployment emergency, stated, “Still, at a time when millions of Americans feel a deep sense of urgency in their own lives, Republican leaders in Washington just don’t get it. While a majority of Senators support taking these steps to help the American people, some (primarily Republicans) are playing the same old Washington games and using their power to hold this relief hostage – a move that only ends up holding back our recovery. It doesn't make sense.”

Remarking about the economy, President Obama stated, “Well, on Friday, we learned that after 22 straight months of job loss, our economy has now created jobs in the private sector for 6 months in a row. That’s a positive sign. But the truth is, the recession from which we’re emerging has left us in a hole that’s about 8 million jobs deep. And as I’ve said from the day I took office, it’s going to take months, even years, to dig our way out – and it’s going to require an all-hands-on-deck effort.”

As the Senate returns to business on July 12, millions of unemployed Americans in desperate need of assistance have one ray of hope. W.V. Democrats and state labor leaders are pushing WV Gov Joe Manchin to fill the Senate spot held for more than half a century by the late Sen. Byrd. By naming himself Senator this week, Manchin becomes the 60th vote and on Monday, Senate Democrats could muster the votes to overcome Republican filibusters and pass an extension of unemployment benefits.

From my perspective, Republicans are a party of NO. They are digging in their heels. They think tax cuts are the only option left for economic recovery. They want the American Public as miserable as possible. Keep them unemployed by stopping the creation of new jobs. Deny them unemployment extensions. Let them starve.
Make the American Public so miserable they believe the Federal Government is broken and therefore elect Republicans in November. Their goal is to end entitlements of any nature. Curtail all future Federal programs. Return power to the states where they think they have more influence because “Washington is Broken." At the state level, this means no unemployment benefits at all - even 26 weeks of benefits are in jeopardy because the states are broke. Already they are portraying the unemployed as "spoiled" and "Lazy." As Republican candidate for Nevada Senate and Tea Party favorite Sharon Angle said about the unemployed, "We’ve put in so much entitlement into our government that we really have spoiled our citizenry.” She said cutting them off from unemployment "will motivate them to find and accept any job, no matter the pay." She said this even though the Labor dept reported there is only 1 job for every 5 unemployed Americans.

Republicans will try to cut ALL entitlement programs. They are preparing to cut Social Security. If the public supports them they will cut Medicaid, Medicare and every other "Liberal Democrat" program. They will continue to support outsourcing so more jobs will be lost. If you believe in their vision and they win this power struggle, you may have lower taxes but you certainly will not have a job nor any benefits including insurance. We truly will evolve to two classes, the Rich Elite Conservatives/Business Owners and the desperately poor, unemployed masses.

Monday, July 5, 2010

My Idea for President Obama: The U.S.A. Jobs for Americans Plan and Honors Program

At lunch today, my husband and I discussed ideas to increase Jobs for Americans. We came up with an idea and want to pass it on to President Obama. We call it "The Jobs for Americans Plan." I am advertising this plan here, on Daily Kos and on Facebook. I sent this to the President via his White House website.

Both my husband and I worked for Fortune 500 companies. We know and understand that a number of companies outsource many jobs offshore. These are jobs many Americans, especially middle class Americans want. These are jobs that, when they were outsourced off-shore, meant lay-offs for hard-working Americans. Business says they outsource to save money. Offshore, they are not required to pay employees at the same rate. Offshore, they are not required to maintain OSHA sanctioned, safe environments. Offshore, they are not required to adhere to union bargained contracts. Offshore, these employees do not pay U.S. income taxes, nor are companies required to pay social security taxes or unemployment premiums based on payroll amounts.

Types of jobs sent offshore:
. Production: physical manufacturing (primarily to China)
. IT Services: Software Engineering (primarily to India & other English speaking countries) HP, IBM, Intel, AT&T, AMD, Microsoft, Oracle, Cisco, SAP, BEA, etc.
. Innovation Outsourcing: to South Africa, India, Pakistan, China, Mexico, Russia, etc.
. Transfer of Intellectual Property
. Customer Service: All customer service work to English Speaking Countries (any company that provides Customer Service via phone or internet)

Our "The U.S.A. Jobs for Americans Plan & Honors Program":
1. Identify and report the rate of off-shore staffing in each U.S. based company.
(e.g.: Apple and IBM each staff 100,000 employees. Each staff 20,000 employees offshore = 20%)
2. Each company that outsources offshore is asked to reduce offshore staffing by 50% and replace those workers with US Based employees.
(e.g.: Apple and IBM are each asked to replace 10,000 of their offshore employees with 10,000 US based workers)
3. Each company that participates in the plan receives a tax reduction for each offshore employee replaced by a U.S. employee equal to 25% of each employee's compensation (fully loaded).
4. Each company fully participating in this program will receive a U.S. Honors Award to display company wide. Reports are published monthly. Participating companies may advertise that they have received this award. U.S. Citizens are encouraged to frequent U.S. Honors companies.
(e.g.: Apple fully participates in the Program. IBM does not. Apple reduces offshore jobs by 10,000; advertises and staffs 10,000 U.S. jobs; receives 25% tax cut for 10,000 employees; receives honors award; runs ads - especially during the SuperBowl that they are a U.S. Honors Award Winner. Business thrives. Employees Happy. America is working. Buying Apple products and services.
IBM does not participate; receives no incentives or tax cuts; No new ads; No award program. U.S. Honors Report shows they are not participating in the program. After 2nd year of program, decides to join it and begins hiring U.S. based employees and reducing number of employees offshore.)

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