The Republican and Democratic parties have no intention of allowing independents and third parties into their exclusive club. A series of arcane laws and rules governing elections make it extremely difficult for outsiders to get on the ballot, receive exposure, raise money, comply with regulations that are designed to advance the interests of Republicans and Democrats or participate in public debates. Third parties and independents are effectively disenfranchised, although 44 percent of the voting public identify as independent. This discrimination is euphemistically labeled “bipartisanship,” but the correct term, as Theresa Amato writes, is “political apartheid.”
Within weeks, the reopening of schools across the United States has already become a complete catastrophe. Outside of the mobilization of educators, parents and the broader working class to halt this homicidal policy, there will be rapid acceleration of the spread of the deadly COVID-19 disease throughout every region of the country. Because no government agency at the local, state or federal level is systematically tracking work-related COVID-19 cases and deaths, Kansas teacher Alisha Morris took it upon herself to begin compiling this data in a spreadsheet. The list, which is now curated by roughly 35 people, has been shared in the dozens of Facebook groups that have been set up to oppose the unsafe reopening of schools and has been viewed tens of thousands of times by educators, parents and students.
By Igor Bobic for The Huffington Post - A Las Vegas rally for Republican presidential hopeful Donald Trump turned ugly Monday night, the eve of a Republican presidential debate, after multiple protesters interrupted the candidate's speech. According to reporters at the event, held at the Westgate Las Vegas Resort and Casino, protesters clashed with security guards as they were escorted from the room. Some of the protesters appeared to be Black Lives Matter activists and gun control supporters. At one point, as security guards attempted to remove a black man from the rally, an attendee said, “Light the motherfucker on fire!”
By María Inés Taracena in Tuscon Weekly - About 30 people gathered outside the Tucson Electric Power headquarters this morning to protest U.S. Sen. John McCain's role in the Oak Flat giveaway to foreign mining company Resolution Copper. Some of the protesters also wanted to raise awareness on a bill McCain sponsors—SB 750—which would waive laws on all federal public land and all tribal land within 100 miles of the U.S.-Mexico border. Simultaneously, the Republican senator was inside in a private meeting with TEP representatives. "He's having three private meetings this week, private town halls, while he refuses to meet with his constituents," says Cyndi Tuell, an attorney, conservation advocate and a volunteer with the Sierra Club's Borderlands campaign. "We are ashamed of him for that and ashamed of him for giving away the sacred Apache land of Oak Flat in a midnight deal in Congress."
One lesson of the 2014 election cycle was that more money came from fewer people. And a look at the political One Percent of the One Percent of Americans — the top 31,000 or so donors, roughly equal to one percent of one percent of the U.S. population — over the last three elections bears that out: The money coming from this select demographic is increasing and it is leaning more conservative. What’s more, even within the top .01 percent, the donors at the very peak are contributing more and more of the money. The Center for Responsive Politics and the Sunlight Foundation teamed up to take a detailed look at the topmost tier of donors of disclosed political contributions at the federal level.
Here’s what happened: On Thursday, during a meeting of the South Florida Water Management District, “Tea Partiers” gathered outside to protest a state plan to purchase a big swath of the Everglades and protect it. But as the Palm Beach Postreports, they were mostly actors hired by the Tea Party of Miami and the company U.S. Sugar. The Tea Party chapter put the casting call out on Facebook, capturedby a reporter for Creative Loafing Tampa. They offered $75 cash to show up for two hours and hold banners and signs, which would be provided. It’s easy to see why they had such trouble filling out a crowd without paying for it. Everglades restoration is enormously popular in Florida.
An employee of Florida’s environmental protection department was forced to take a leave of absence and seek a mental health evaluation for violating governor Rick Scott’s unwritten ban on using the phrases “climate change” or “global warming” under any circumstance, according to a complaint filed against the state. Longtime employee Barton Bibler reportedly included an explicit mention of climate change in his official notes from a Florida Coastal Managers Forum meeting in late February, during which climate change, rising sea levels and the possible environmental impact of the Keystone XL Pipeline were discussed. On 9 March, Bibler received a formal reprimand for “misrepresenting that ‘the official meeting agenda included climate change’”, according to a statement from Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility (Peer).
It’s been over 40 years since the Supreme Court decided, in Roe v Wade, that women have a constitutional right to abortion. The legal argument was based around the concept that women had a right to privacy under the due process clause of the 14th Amendment, and that right extended to their right to have an abortion. Perhaps no time in the 40 years since Roe v Wade have female reproductive rights been so under attack. From Texas to Alabama to Congressmen saying that women can’t get pregnant when raped because their bodies have a way of shutting that sh*t down, men (usually white conservative men with ties to patriarchal religious institutions) are working their balls off trying to control women; specifically a woman access to birth control and abortion. In the United Sates, one out of every three women has had an abortion. If you are a women living in Texas, and a growing number of states, access to this basic, simple, and safe procedure has been severely restricted with the passage of hundreds of new laws in the last several years that strip a women's right to privacy, limit access to abortion, and shame women into thinking that their choice about what to do with their bodies is wrong.