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Blackrock Is A ‘Modern Day Dutch East India Company’

On August 14, US-based organizations rallied in front of the BlackRock world headquarters in New York City to demand that the massive investment company cancel the USD 220 million it holds in Zambia’s external debt. Organizations that participated in the action include the Act Now to Stop War and End Racism (ANSWER) Coalition, the Peoples Forum, the Debt Collective, Nodutdol for Korean Community Development, Friends of the Congo, and Friends of Swazi Freedom. For years, Zambia has been stuck diverting public funds to service its foreign debts.

US-Based Organizations Demand Blackrock Cancel Zambia’s Debt

On August 14, progressive organizations, led by the ANSWER Coalition and the Peoples Forum, will rally outside of the BlackRock global headquarters in New York City to demand that the multinational investment company cancel Zambia’s debt. BlackRock, the world’s largest asset manager, holds the largest privately-owned share of Zambia’s debt at a staggering USD 220 million. BlackRock is not starved for funds, owning USD 10 trillion in assets and dividends and investing in industries such as private prisons, fossil fuels, and pharmaceutical giants. “[BlackRock’s] refusal to cancel or negotiate a restructuring of their share of the debt amounts to holding their foot on the neck of 20 million Zambians,” writes the ANSWER Coalition in a statement.

BlackRock Security, NYPD ‘Brutalize’ Climate Protesters

BlackRock security guards and NYPD officers "brutalized" climate campaigners this morning, according to organizers, after activists succeeded in shuttering the entrance to the headquarters of the world's largest fossil fuel investor for three hours. Alice Hu, the senior climate campaigner for New York Communities for Change (NYCC), told Common Dreams that 11 out of 75 activists were arrested after storming the building with pitchforks and pouring fake oil to demand that the asset-management firm stop investing in fossil fuels. The advocacy group posted several videos on Twitter of first BlackRock security and then police officers "roughing up" the activists, including one elderly protester who they say was manhandled by police.

French Pension Protesters Occupy BlackRock, Torch Restaurant

A new wave of unrest over a pension reform engulfed Paris and other French cities Thursday, with enraged protesters occupying the building of the US-based investment firm BlackRock and setting fire to a popular restaurant favored by President Emmanuel Macron. Dozens of trade union members streamed into BlackRock’s Paris offices in the historical Centorial building, where they set off firecrackers and chanted slogans directed at the company’s private pension fund. “The government wants to throw away pensions, it wants to force people to fund their own retirement with private pension funds, but what we know is that only the rich will be able to benefit from such a setup,” said protester Françoise Onic, a school teacher.

Climate Activists Hold Week-long Protests In New York City

Environmental activists from Extinction Rebellion and other NGOs are implementing week-long protests against climate change and inequality ahead of the 10th anniversary of Hurricane Sandy. Activists briefly shut down the escalators at BlackRock, the world's largest financier of fossil fuels, according to New York Communities for Change. Participants urged BlackRock management to refrain from making new fossil-fuel investments and urged the New York state government to adequately fund climate action. Protesters Tuesday temporarily blocked a section of New York City's Park Avenue and called for measures to tax the rich for a statewide Green New Deal.

United Nations Women And Blackrock

An open letter signed by 700-plus feminist groups and activists sent on Aug. 8 to UN Women, protesting a recently announced partnership between the agency and BlackRock, a United States-based hedge fund, resulted in the cancellation of the arrangement. The letter pointed out that BlackRock personifies “crisis-prone speculation-based capitalism” and that the May 25 joint press releases announcing the partnership by both parties offered no useful or explicit details on what it would accomplish. Such vagueness, the letter writers contended, could give UN Women the appearance of “pinkwashing” BlackRock, since there was no clear benefit for gender equality stated in the partnership goals.

The Pending Railroad Worker Strike Is A Fight For All Workers

Railroad workers voted overwhelmingly this year to go on strike after more than two years of contract negotiations. The Biden administration prevented a strike by appointing a Presidential Emergency Board (PEB) to hold hearings. That board released its recommendations recently. Clearing the FOG speaks with Michael "Paul" Lindsey, a railroad engineer and member of Railroad Workers United, about the deterioration of working conditions, workers' response to the PEB and the high likelihood of a national strike this Fall. Lindsey explains why the railroad worker's plight is similar to that of many workers in the United States and around the world and the importance of solidarity if a strike occurs. 

The Shadow Bank That Owns The World

For most people in America and much of the world, our life is — to some degree — owned, run, managed, or manipulated by a “shadow bank” that few people even know the name of. It holds between 9 and 10 Trillion dollars in assets. It is the largest or close-to largest stake holder in most enormous media companies like Disney and Comcast, most big tech companies like Google and Meta/Facebook, most big banks like Citibank, Bank of America, and Barclays. This secretive cabal is one of the biggest funders of deforestation, fossil fuel use, weapons contractors, and basically destroying the planet. And yet, despite all that, most Americans and most people around the world have never even heard of them. Watch the video to learn who it is that truly owns the planet.

COP26 Is Almost Here, And Pressure Is Building.

There’s less than a week to go until COP26, the United Nations climate conference which some are calling the most important yet. As folks across the globe make their way to Glasgow, pressure is mounting to hold the corporations that are investing in, funding, and insuring climate destruction accountable. These actions are culminating in a global day of action on Friday, October 29th. As part of the runup to this critical global conference, we’ve seen a massive influx of actions to hold the world’s two largest asset managers, BlackRock and Vanguard, accountable. From vigils and mural paintings outside BlackRock’s San Francisco office to bike actions targeting Vanguard’s CEO (himself an avid cyclist) at its headquarters in the outskirts of Philadelphia, people impacted by corporate inaction on climate are coming together and raising their voices with the aim to push these firms to make meaningful (not just performative) climate commitments ahead of COP26.

Coal Miners’ Ongoing Strike Against BlackRock’s Warrior Met

Larry Spencer, UMWA District 20 Vice President, represents the 1,100 coal miners in three UMWA locals which on strike against Warrior Met in Alabama since April 1, 2021. He will give an update on the strike in a September 28 webinar. The strikers are fighting to reverse concessions that were foisted on them in 2016 when BlackRock and other billionaire creditors set up Warrior Met Coal and took over mine operations with the aid of a bankruptcy court. To keep their jobs, Warrior Met made the miners work up to seven days a week and take a $6-an-hour pay cut, accept reduced health insurance, and give up most of their overtime pay and paid holidays. BlackRock is one of the three majority shareholders in the new company.

Striking Alabama Coal Miners Want Their $1.1 Billion Back

History repeated itself as hundreds of miners spilled out of buses in June and July to leaflet the Manhattan offices of asset manager BlackRock, the largest shareholder in the mining company Warrior Met Coal. Some had traveled from the pine woods of Brookwood, Alabama, where 1,100 coal miners have been on strike against Warrior Met since April 1. Others came in solidarity from the rolling hills of western Pennsylvania and the hollows of West Virginia and Ohio. Among them was 90-year-old retired Ohio miner Jay Kolenc, in a wheelchair at the picket line—retracing his own steps from five decades ago. It was 1974 when Kentucky miners and their supporters came to fight Wall Street in the strike behind the film Harlan County USA.

Meet BlackRock, The New Great Vampire Squid

BlackRock has been called “the most powerful institution in the financial system,” “the most powerful company in the world” and the “secret power.” It is the world’s largest asset manager and “shadow bank,” larger than the world’s largest bank (which is in China), with over $7 trillion in assets under direct management and another $20 trillion managed through its Aladdin risk-monitoring software. BlackRock has also been called “the fourth branch of government” and “almost a shadow government”, but no part of it actually belongs to the government. Despite its size and global power, BlackRock is not even regulated as a “Systemically Important Financial Institution” under the Dodd-Frank Act, thanks to pressure from its CEO Larry Fink, who has long had “cozy” relationships with government officials.

BlackRock: Divest From Amazon Destruction

BlackRock, the world's largest investment firm, has more money invested in the fossil fuel and agribusiness industries – the biggest drivers of climate change – than any other company in the world. That means that BlackRock's portfolio constitutes a huge liability for putting the planet on a path towards runaway climate change -- in fact, BlackRock contributes more to climate change than almost any other company on Earth. Demand that BlackRock divest and stop financing Amazon destruction!
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