Texas Longhorns with newborn calf in Bluebonnets

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Alan Maki

Alan Maki
Doing research at the LBJ Library in Austin, Texas

It's time to claim our Peace Dividend

It's time to claim our Peace Dividend

We need to beat swords into plowshares.

We need to beat swords into plowshares.

A program for real change...


What we need is a "21st Century Full Employment Act for Peace and Prosperity" which would make it a mandatory requirement that the president and Congress attain and maintain full employment.

"Voting is easy and marginally useful, but it is a poor substitute for democracy, which requires direct action by concerned citizens"

- Ben Franklin

Let's talk...

Let's talk...

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Meet to coordinate health care action; or, another attempt to undermine support for single-payer universal health care?

From: Alan Maki [mailto:amaki000@centurytel.net]

Sent: Thursday, June 25, 2009 9:36 AM

To: mn-politics@forums.e-democracy.org

Cc: joel@joelclemmer.org; info@jamesmayer.org; 'Kip Sullivan'; sen.david.tomassoni@senate.mn; 'Sen.Jim Carlson'; sen.mary.olson@senate.mn; sen.tony.lourey@senate.mn; senator_levin@levin.senate.gov; rep.al.juhnke@house.mn; rep.bill.hilty@house.mn; rep.carlos.mariani@house.mn; rep.carolyn.laine@house.mn; rep.dave.olin@house.mn; rep.frank.hornstein@house.mn; rep.maryellen.otremba@house.mn; rep.tom.anzelc@house.mn; rep.tom.Rukavina@house.mn; rep.tony.sertich@house.mn; elizabeth_reed@levin.senate.gov; teresa_detrempe@klobuchar.senate.gov; 'Carl Davidson'; 'David Shove'; 'Walter Tillow'; nursenpo@gmail.com; 'Joshua Frank'; rhodagilman@earthlink.net; bswenson@bemidjipioneer.com; 'Laurel Beager'; WCS-A@yahoogroups.com; mzweig@notes.cc.sunysb.edu; rachleff@macalester.edu; 'Rachel Maddow'

Subject: RE: [Minnesota] Minnesota Single Payer

This devious and deceitful e-mail is being passed around in Oregon, and similar e-mails are being circulated in Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan and Iowa and no doubt in every state in the country (all bold highlighting, larger letters and underlining is mine-A.L.M.):

Subject: Meet to coordinate Oregon health care action

This is an opportunity for single payer groups-especially the 28 unions
endorsing HR 676-- to meet with supporters of more moderate reform.

Groups Invite You To Help Plan Advocacy on Federal Health Reform

The Oregon Center for Public Policy, Health Care for America Now, Oregon
Health Action Campaign and SEIU call on Oregon health advocates to
coordinate messages and actions to make the most of our efforts.
That's why we're inviting you to the first of on-going weekly coordinating
meetings focused on this critical legislation in Congress.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009
10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.

Northwest Health Foundation
221 NW Second Ave, Suite 300, Bamboo Room
Portland, OR 97209

Future meetings will be on Tuesdays at the same time but will be held at
another location to be determined. Stay tuned for that information.
Need to join by phone instead?
If you are unable to attend in person, you can attend by conference call.

Code: 35825818#

(Call-in number for future meetings may be different)
For more information, please contact Janet Bauer, (503) 557-6589,

From the HCAN web site:

On its face this sounds real good--- like we are all going to be getting together to push for health care reform; however, this is what HCAN is all about; taken from their own web site:

What is Health Care for America Now (HCAN)?

Health Care for America Now (HCAN) is a national grassroots campaign of more than 1,000 organizations in 46 states representing 30 million people dedicated to winning quality, affordable health care we all can count on in 2009. Our organization and principles are supported by President Obama, Vice President Biden, and more than 190 Members of Congress.

We are building a national movement to win comprehensive health care reform by helping mobilize people in their communities to lobby their U.S. Senators and Representatives in Congress to stand up to the insurance companies and other special interest groups to achieve quality, affordable health care in 2009.

Well, we all know neither President Barack Obama nor Vice-president Joe Biden support the kind of health care reform the American people want and need… their intent is to expand the public trough, enlarging it so it will hold more tax-dollars for the greedy, money-grubbing insurance companies and HMO’s to profit from.

These are the very people like Robert Borosage, Robert Hickey, Richard Trumka and John Sweeney and the rest of this bunch of doting Obama supporters who went behind the backs of their memberships to establish this organization--- HCAN--- for the sole purpose of saving Barack Obama’s worthless, Wall Street serving, political butt by first undermining--- and then killing--- single-payer universal health care and prevent any discussion of the real “public option,” which is a national public health care system based upon VA/Indian Health Service for all--- or socialized health care.

In fact, not one single one of the “leaders” of these 1,000 organizations ever consulted with their memberships--- all of whom have voted (often repeatedly) that their organizations work to support H.R. 676, single-payer universal health care similar to the Canadian Health Care System. H.R. 676 is very good legislation which needs a couple minor “tweaks” to bring it up to the high standards of the Canadian Health Care System… but, as it is, it is a good start on the way to socialized health care.

Ironically, it was the Progressive Democrats of America (PDA) and Progressives for Obama who got the momentum going for undermining the single-payer movement.

These organizations pretended to be speaking on behalf of the single-payer movement when they allowed--- at Obama’s request--- that all mention of single-payer be kept out of the resolution on health care submitted to the National Democratic Party Convention; and, then, after giving single-payer this mortal blow, they pretended to again be for single-payer in order to suck in support for Barack Obama under the false pretense that “Obama can’t say it or he wouldn’t get elected, but he is really for single-payer.”

Then Robert Borosage and Roger Hickey quickly went into action pulling together this “coalition” of sell-out “leaders” who have joined together for political expediency under the umbrella of HCAN to save Obama’s political butt and preserve the “employer paid” insurance scam which Obama elevates to an American tradition he does not want to break with, claiming he speaks for the American people and pointing to the support he is receiving from HCAN… even though every poll shows that the vast majority of the American people want nothing less than what the Canada Health Act provides for its people.

And now along come these charlatans, flim-flam artists and con-men like Barack Obama--- birds of a feather flock together--- saying, “Come on single-payer universal health care advocates work together with us for more moderate health care reform.”

Moderate health care reform;” the code-words for keeping profits in health care and keeping people out.

Everyone now understands the perversion of the for-profit health care system which Barack Obama describes as “employer provided health careeven though the majority of the employers in the United States either provide no health care insurance for their employees or are rapidly shifting the health care burden to their employees.

Here in Minnesota, the Progressive Democrats of America have been hard at work trying to undermine the single-payer movement in two ways…

First they tried to re-word the resolution on single-payer universal health care to include “affordable health insurance;” when that didn’t succeed and delegates to the MN DFL State Convention overwhelmingly approved the strongest single-payer resolution in the country, these dirty birds gave it the title of “affordable health care” on the MN DFL web site.

In fact, most Minnesotans are for a “VA for all” socialized health care system as are most Democrats at the grassroots level because, when given the opportunity to vote in precinct caucuses and county conventions, the support for resolutions stating:

“No-fee/No-premium, comprehensive, all-inclusive universal health care; publicly funded, publicly administered and publicly delivered” is what grassroots Democrats, like those who voted unanimously at the Roseau County DFL Convention, want.

It sounds like a big organization, but here in all of Minnesota there aren’t more than twenty dues paying PDA members and they are lucky to get three or four people to meetings. Most of these people can be described as “poverty pimps,” “foundation whores,” and just plain old “party hacks.”

The HCAN people like Robert Borosage and John Sweeney talk about the need for “political compromise” as if health care reform is nothing but some kind of political football to kick around; when, for most working people, health care reform is about life and death and the possibility of losing the family home to pay obscenely high medical bills… in Minnesota, fully 83% of all personal bankruptcies are related to medical bills!

Here in Minnesota, groups like Progressive Democrats of America and Progressives for Obama are supporting a particularly vicious piece of legislation by Minnesota State Senator John Marty, the darling of doctors and other small business types, that further serves to undermine the movement for real health care reform and the leader of PDA, Joel Clemmer, has the unmitigated gall trying to pass this phony health care initiative off as “single-payer;” when in fact, anyone who bothers to take the time to read this legislation becomes aware that this phony health care reform is aimed at placing the full burden of health care costs on the backs of the working class and the poor. In fact, the very supporters of this legislation refused to mount a fight to prevent Minnesota’s Republican governor from cutting tens of thousands of impoverished Minnesotans from the present “public option” health care alternative that was supposedly designed to protect these very people like the working people now finding themselves the victims of a very cruel profit driven economic system as this rotten economic system collapses.

We urge people not to fall for these traps that have been carefully laid and set by those political hacks like Robert Borosage and Roger Hickey together with those like the Progressive Democrats of America, Progressives for Obama, Campaign for America’s Future/America’s Future Now whose nice sounding names run contrary to their dirty deeds and who have betrayed the American people when it comes to real health care reform--- nothing less than single-payer is what we need; socialized health care is what we need to be striving for:

“No-fee/No-premium, comprehensive, all-inclusive universal health care; publicly funded, publicly administered and publicly delivered”

This is the wealthiest country in the world with the most screwed up priorities. If we would learn to get along with the rest of the world instead of Wall Street stealing their resources using cheap labor we could eliminate the 800 U.S. foreign military bases dotting the globe costing trillions of dollars to maintain; and, instead, establish public health care centers spread out across our own country providing free health care for all.

I received an e-mail the other day asking:

“What are we going to have to do to get real health care reform in this country… replace the entire U.S. Congress, the House and Senate?”

It is beginning to look that way… especially when Barack Obama can twist arms to shove through billions of dollars financing senseless wars but has to revert to peddling a pack of lies like a used car salesman trying to sell a clunker passing it off as a luxury vehicle that will just make it off the lot before breaking down in an attempt to try to hoodwink the American people into believing his phony scam he calls “the public option” is the only option politically feasible. War is feasible; real health care reform is not… the sign of a corrupt political system upholding a decadent health care system spit out by a rotten economic system in severe decline.

What the heck is “affordable health care” at a time when millions of Americans are losing their homes because they can’t pay the monthly mortgage or the heating bills?

Alan L. Maki
Director of Organizing,
Midwest Casino Workers Organizing Council

58891 County Road 13
Warroad, Minnesota 56763
Phone: 218-386-2432
Cell phone: 651-587-5541
E-mail: amaki000@centurytel.net

Check out my blog:

Thoughts From Podunk


Cc: Maggie Bird
Midwest Casino Workers Organizing Council