Texas Longhorns with newborn calf in Bluebonnets

Texas Longhorns with newborn calf in Bluebonnets

Please note I have a new phone number...


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...

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Why did the Minnesota Democratic Farmer-Labor Party allow a racist Community Development Director to undermine and circumvent affirmative action?

October 20, 2009

Rita Albrecht,

Community Development Director, City of Bemidji. Minnesota


Ms. Albrecht;

I would like to know why in all of your planning surrounding the Bemidji Regional Events Center (BREC)… from all the initial planning to the multi-cultural aspects of the ground-breaking ceremonies to the many intricate particulars you have considered from the art-work to adorn the BREC to its shrubbery, not once did you consider employment and affirmative action policies as to construction, maintenance and staffing the completed Bemidji Regional Events Center?

Now that this topic of jobs has been broached--- again; what do you intend to do to see to it that this most disgraceful, racist injustice is remedied?

Certainly you must see that there is something wrong when you promote multi-cultural awareness and appreciation as a cover for hiding racist hiring practices.

Now, what steps are going to be taken to see to it that Native Americans are going to be hired at all levels and paid real living wages and salaries in staffing the completed BREC?

I assume you think my questions are just as important as any of the minute detail you have been praised for considering by the likes of the Executive Director of the Minnesota Indian Gaming Association, John McCarthy who fronts for the interests of mobsters like the Fertitta family who are looking forward to increasing their already obscene wealth using the BREC in promoting the UFC--- Ultimate Fighting Championship scam being passed off as “sport.”

You have even worked out details about how to shuttle those attending BREC activities to the smoke-filled local casinos where workers are employed at poverty wages without any rights or protections provided by state or federal labor laws.

Could you not work out a way to transport and shuttle Native American workers for employment in the building and construction of this tax-payer financed Bemidji Regional Events Center? Did not John McCarthy offer the services of the casino shuttles? McCarthy must have furnished free food to the Beltrami County Democratic Farmer-Labor Party fundraiser expecting to get something in return… since John McCarthy and the DFL have refused all comment, let me suggest what McCarthy received in return for furnishing the walleye dinner was Democrats, once again, looking the other way as Native Americans were denied good-paying union construction jobs because the Minnesota Indian Gaming Association doesn’t want casino workers getting the idea that it is only through good union contracts combined with the protections offered by state and federal labor legislation that can provide a decent and healthy working environment at real living wages--- the only chance working people have to rise from poverty.

No doubt, Ms. Albrecht, you have earned the praises of John McCarthy and the Minnesota Indian Gaming Association because your intent is to deny Native Americans employment in staffing the Bemidji Regional Events Center in the very same way you connived to deny equal employment opportunities to those hired to build and construct the BREC.

Let us have answers to these questions at the same time you post all the jobs that will be available for hire in staffing and maintaining the Bemidji Regional Events Center. Hopefully these answers and the job postings from you will be forth-coming in time to prevent further racist injustices.

Since you have seen fit to use the news media and various list serves to tout your accomplishments regarding the Bemidji Regional Events Center, I assume you are not opposed to discussing this problem in the same public manner.

Perhaps you and Senator Mary Olson and all those who participated in the BREC groundbreaking ceremony would like to explain to the Native Americans who participated why they were welcome to perform drum and dance ceremonies but had the door closed on them when it came to employment?

Maybe I should ask you, also; are you aware of affirmative action laws regarding hiring here in Minnesota?

You might not find this discussion as thrilling as to what kind of shrubbery will adorn the BREC but, I would appreciate you indulging me just the same.


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


Canada sends a socialist, working class union leader and NDP politician to Washington as its Ambassador

Canada's most reactionary ever politician, Prime minister Stephen Harper, has been forced to send Manitoba's Gary Doer, a socialist working class union leader and NDP politician to Washington as its Ambassador because of mounting pressure from the labor, peace and progressive movements in Canada looking for more sane international relations and complementing the international hopes for a new U.S. foreign policy--- which has not yet materialized under the Obama Administration; but, which, is sure to be given a great big push with the arrival of Gary Doer in Washington D.C. as Canada's new Ambassador to the United States.

U.S. peace, labor, health care and environmental activists should start beating a path to Gary Doer's door before the multi-national corporations have a chance to mount their campaign, which they are sure to do in attempt to keep Canada within the fold of U.S. imperialism.

Gary Doer has proven to be North America's most popular progressive politician in decades as he headed up the Manitoba New Democratic Party for many years leading to becoming Manitoba's Premier where he led the efforts to substantially improve the lives, living conditions and standard of living for the working class.

Gary Doer, a rank-and-file worker, is a past president of the powerful Manitoba Government Employees Union.

Americans should seek to learn from Gary Doer about Canada's health care system and working people would do well to learn from Gary Doer what kind of political movement it takes to bring workers to power--- even if that power is only limited to political power at this stage of the class struggle within the capitalist economic system and does not yet include economic power.

For working people in the United States... the arrival of Canada's new Ambassador, Gary Doer, is much more important than the election of Barack Obama because Doer has demonstrated the ability to lead--- and win--- struggles against capitalist corporate power and imperialist domination.

Ironically, the American people, working people, now really do have a real representative in Washington D.C.--- even if he is from Canada... now, there is something to think about!