Please note I have a new phone number...

512-517-2708

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...

http://peaceandsocialjustice.blogspot.com/2013/03/a-progressive-program-for-real-change.html


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, July 19, 2012

We appeal to you to Join an International Action Week For No Naval Base

I would like to suggest peace activists consider endorsing these efforts and create an action in solidarity--- perhaps an informational picket outside the offices of a member of Congress like Keith Ellison who Co-chairs the Congressional Progressive Caucus which should come out in opposition to this Naval Base in South Korea which in reality would just be adding another U.S. military base to the more than 800 that exist now while human needs go unmet... I hope everyone will check out the links at the bottom and consider initiating a solidarity action.

My suggestion for a date of the action would be:
Labor Day, Monday, September 3, 2012

We appeal to you to Join an International Action Week For No Naval Base

2-9 September 2012



We appeal to the people of the world who oppose war and want the world to be a peaceful and sustainable community.

Please take part in an International Solidarity Action (2-9 September 2012) during the World Conservation Congress 2012 which will be held in Jeju Island.

The 2012 World Conservation Congress, which is an environmental conference held every 4 years by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), is to take place from 6-15 September in Seogwipo city, Jeju Island. Jeju Island is located in the southern part of South Korea, adjacent to China, Taiwan, and Japan.

However, in Gangjeong village, which is only 7 km far from the congress site, construction to build a massive naval base has begun despite the opposition of a great number of villagers. The total size of the naval base is 490,000 square meters and it will not only harm the environment but also ignite military tensions

Gangjeong village in Jeju blessed with a natural environment should be preserved for the future of mankind.

Gangjeong village is a coastal town with a sacred environment and high value preservation not only in Jeju Island, but also in the world.

The Sea of Gangjeong village is designated as a national cultural treasure (natural memorial No. 442) by the Korean Cultural Heritage Administration of Korea and is adjacent to Beom Island, a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. Gangjeong village is God’s blessing natural heritage. The sea of Gangjeong is one of the major habitats of the Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins, one of the species listed by the IUCN. It is estimated that there are only 114 Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins in Korea.

Gangjeong village is located between the two biggest creeks in Jeju Island and has the biggest freshwater fish habitat on the island. It provides 70–80% of drinking water to southern residents in the island. As Jeju Island lacks water due to its porous basaltic land, this uncommon village is nicknamed as ‘Il-Gangjeong’ which means the best Gangjeong village. Due to this character, it has been the ‘heartland of agriculture’ from ancient times. Artifacts from prehistoric times showing the transformation of housing culture have been also discovered in Gangjeong. For such reasons, Gangjeong was appointed as a limited development district until the Jeju naval base construction plan was drafted.

Gureombi rock, located at the Jeju naval base construction site, is a broad flat rock with 1.2 km in length and 250m in width and it forms a greatly peculiar bedrock wetland where spring water comes upward. As Gureombi rock is a part of absolute preservation area by Jeju local government, it is home to the Government designated endangered species such as sesarma intermedium, small round frogs, Jeju saebaengi (native freshwater shrimp of Jeju Island), and clithon retropietus v. martens.

However, the Government is unilaterally enforcing the construction of the naval base without appropriate evaluation and even by easing regulations expediently or ignoring them illegally. It is clear that the naval base will not only destroy the environment of the sea of Gangjeong village, but also cause the serious destruction of the environment of UNESCO Biosphere Reserve located just 2 km away from the construction site.

There is no doubt that this construction is entirely contrary to the principals of the World Conservation Congress. The efforts of the South Korean government and Jeju local government to promote Jeju island as a world environmental city, while unilaterally enforcing the construction of the naval base, is deceiving global citizens.

Actions Suggested

1. Please choose at least one day during the International Action Week (2-9 September 2012) and organize any individual or collective actions to oppose the Jeju naval base.

2. Please inform the world that the construction of the naval base in Jeju is fully contrary to the principal of 2012 World Conservation Congress. Please make calls to the World Conservation Congress member organizations and member states to express concerns about the Jeju naval base construction.

3. Please ask the South Korean government and Jeju local government to stop building the military base, revoke the naval base project, and make Jeju Island develop intact as an island of world peace.

4. It is hypocritical for Samsung, the main contractor of the naval base project, to support financially the largest environmental event in the world. Please urge Samsung C&T and Daerim, two main contractors, to stop constructing naval base in Jeju.

5. To spread this amazing event widely, please send your endorsement (with your organization’s name) and your action plans to the Gangjeong international team (gangjeongintl@gmail.com ) in advance. After your actions, please kindly send your photos and videos with a simple explanation to the team as well.

6. There are many events being planned in Jeju Gangjeong village during the international action week (2-9 September 2012). If possible, please come to the village and be part of our nonviolent struggle which has continued over the last 6 years.

We greatly appreciate for your solidarity.



The following groups endorse the action:

National Groups

Gangjeong Village Association
Jeju Pan-Island Committee for Stop of Military Base and for Realization of Peace Island (26 organizations)
Korea Environment NGO Network (36 Korean environmental NGOs)
National Network of Korean Civil Society for Opposing to the Naval Base in Jeju Island (125 Korean civil society organizations)
International Groups

Please send your endorsement (organization’s name) and send it to gangjeongintl@gmail.com . We will collect all international groups’ endorsement and list your names here.



Background

Jeju Island should remain an Island of World Peace, not an outpost of war

In 2005, the South Korean Government declared Jeju Island an Island of World Peace. At that time, the Government explained that the purpose was to succeed the spirit of historical summits for diplomacy during the post-Cold war era – the previous chief secretary of the Soviet union, Gorbachev’s visit in Jeju island (1991), the establishment of diplomatic relations between South Korea and Russia (1991), the establishment of diplomatic relations between South Korea and China (1992) and afterward the first visit of Jiang Zemin, the previous chief secretary of the People’s Republic of China, to Jeju island (1995), and cabinet-level talks between North and South Korea--and to contribute to world peace. Furthermore, in the Declaration for the Island of World Peace, two proposals were included. The first was to inherit the three traditions of Jeju Island (no beggar, no thief, and no gate) and the second was to recognize the tragic historical 4.3 massacre, which more than one-eighth of Jeju islanders were massacred in the name of red-hunting.

However, the current naval base construction enforced by the South Korean Government to militarize Jeju and the East China Sea in the name of naval security plays a part to threaten peace and prosperity in the areas. Over the last few years the South Korean government and its Navy have called themselves sub-partners of the Northeast Naval Strategy led by the US administration and strengthened the military cooperation among South Korea, the US, and Japan. The naval base in Jeju will function as an outpost of this plan. In this naval base, US nuclear-powered submarine, nuclear aircraft carrier as well as Aegis missile-carrying warships may berth.

The reason to name Jeju Island as an Island of World Peace is to make the island a hub of exchange and cooperation in Northeast Asia and convert the East China Sea into sea of peace and co-existence. The construction of the naval base is fundamentally contrary to these visions. Thus, it is crucial to protect the island from becoming an outpost of warfare. Jeju Island should be developed as a world peace island.

For more information, please visit:

http://savejejunow.org/

http://www.savejeju.org/

https://www.facebook.com/groups/nonavalbase/

https://www.facebook.com/SaveJeju

http://cafe.daum.net/peacekj (Korean/ English/ Chinese/ Japanese)



Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power in Space
PO Box 652
Brunswick, ME 04011
(207) 443-9502
globalnet@mindspring.com
www.space4peace.org
http://space4peace.blogspot.com/ (blog)

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

58891 County Road 13
Warroad, Minnesota 56763

Phone: 218-386-2432
Cell: 651-587-5541

Primary E-mail: amaki000@centurytel.net
E-mail: alan.maki1951mn@gmail.com

Blog: http://thepodunkblog.blogspot.com/

Friday, July 13, 2012

U.S. imperialism's legacy

And how long will the effects of Obama's present dirty imperialist wars continue into the future?

Ask your friends and neighbors the question the New York Times is afraid to ask:

How is Barack Obama's Wall Street war economy working for you?

"The young man, Phongsavath Sonilya, gesticulated with his arm stumps as he explained to Mrs. Clinton that more than three decades after the end of the war, not enough had been done to stop the use of 
cluster bombs and to support those who may be injured in the future by bombs still lying unexploded in the countryside. The United States has not signed the Convention on Cluster Bombs. "

Question: Why didn't Clinton offer the resources of the United States to clean up the un-exploded cluster bombs since the United States dropped them there?

Question: Why didn't Clinton apologize to the Laotian people for this carnage and destruction which was a blatant act of U.S. imperialist aggression?

Hillary Clinton arrogantly declared without bringing forward anything of substance:

“The international community will join us in our efforts to bring this legacy of the Vietnam War to a safe end, ...” 

Comment: What was not noted by Hillary Clinton nor the New York Times is that "the international community" was united in its opposition to the Vietnam War and condemned the bombing of Laos as a "campaign of genocide."

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Tell the Democrats and Republicans to go to hell

Casino workers support the demonstration at Congressman John Kline's office at 101 West Burnsville Parkway, Burnsville, Minnesota from Noon to 1pm on Tuesday, July 24, 2012 demanding an increase in the Minimum Wage.


http://www.facebook.com/events/393144834075481/

The minimum wage should be a real living--- non-poverty--- wage legislatively tied to calculations of the United States Department of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics based on all cost of living factors.

Any employer who can't pay the workers required to do the job for which they have been hired a real living wage should just do the work themselves or let their spouse and children do the work.

Casino workers employed in the Indian Gaming Industry working in loud, noisy, smoke-filled casinos at poverty wages and without any rights because the Democrats approved the "Compacts" creating this horrendous industry where a bunch of rich, white mobsters own the slot machines leaving Native American communities saddled with huge debt-creating poverty breeding misery are thoroughly fed up with the Democrats.

We are asking all workers to consider this question before casting their votes in November:

How is Barack Obama's Wall Street war economy working for you?

Working class voters have three good alternative choices when they enter the voting booth in November--- all three of whom support substantial increases in the minimum wage:

Jill Stein--- Green Party, Rocky Anderson--- Justice Party, Stewart Alexander--- Socialist Party.

The path to real living wage jobs for every American worker is by creating jobs through solving the problems of the people--- paid for by peace dividends derived from ending these dirty imperialist wars and taxing the hell out of the filthy rich much of whose wealth has been derived from paying poverty wages.

For example: A National Public Health Care System would create more than ten-million new good-paying union jobs.

For example: A National Public Child Care System would create over three-million new good-paying union jobs.

We need to re-establish the historic liberal-progressive-left coalition which can bring about the change and kind of reforms required to protect, defend and raise the quality of life and standard of living for all working people while protecting and advancing the rights of all working people.

Affirmative Action must be enforced so people of color, women and the handicapped get access to the jobs as required by Federal Executive Order #11246. Enforcing Affirmative Action is one way to increase everyone's standard of living because it places pressure on wages to go up as these huge pools of unemployed people which drive wages down are eliminated. An end to discrimination benefits us all.

Of course a good union contract is better than any government anti-poverty program but still we must insist that the United States government wages a war on poverty instead of funding these dirty imperialist wars killing us all.

The wealthy don't need any government help because with their wealth they can fend for themselves; it is working people who need government action on their side not government working against them.

The only way we are going to push wages up and solve the problem of unemployment at the same time is through a combination of union organizing, fighting for the minimum wage to be a real living--- non-poverty--- wage, massive public works jobs programs as described above combined with bringing back depression-busting programs like WPA, CCC and C.E.T.A. and recognizing that an injustice to workers anywhere is an injustice to workers everywhere threatening our rights to a standard of living in line with what the United Nations' universal Declaration of Human Rights requires.

If workers are going to begin winning struggles there must be the realization that workers without any rights or a voice at work have no rights in the communities where they live.

"At-will hiring; At-will firing" legislation must be terminated because it is the primary obstacle to workers organizing and asserting their rights yet the Minnesota Democratic Farmer-Labor Party repeatedly refuses to bring forward the need to rescind "At-will hiring; At-will firing" legislation; why is this?

Wall Street is our common enemy. Whether it be U.S. Congressman John Kline opposing an increase in the minimum wage or MNDFL Governor Mark Dayton refusing to negotiate a new contract in good faith with State workers or President Barack Obama refusing to take a stand in solidarity with the embattled workers in Wisconsin or the MNDFL which has refused to bring its full weight to bear in ending the lock-out of more than 1,300 workers employed by American Crystal Sugar in the Red River Valley--- none of these politicians deserve the votes of working people.

In struggle and solidarity,

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

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

People’s Voice meeting tackles social issues

(Please note: A follow-up meeting to this meeting will be taking place in Cass Lake, Minnesota on July 10, 2012, tentatively scheduled for 5pm)

Published June 24, 2012, 12:00 AM


People’s Voice meeting tackles social issues

BEMIDJI – Poverty, health and corruption were the most common concerns spoken about at the People’s Voice meeting held Saturday at the People’s Choice Church.

By: Brian Matthews, Bemidji Pioneer

BEMIDJI – Poverty, health and corruption were the most common concerns spoken about at the People’s Voice meeting held Saturday at the People’s Choice Church.

“I think half of this board is filled with solutions and half of it is filled with problems,” said Curtis Buckanaga, an organizer of the event.

“I think we need to focus on the solutions and not pay too much attention to the problems. The problems are there, what are we going to do about them? That’s what we need to do, we can’t let them discourage us.

The purpose of the event was for people to have the opportunity to share their concerns of the reservations and the surrounding community life.

In doing so, a bulletin board was created, filled with areas of concern. Some of the issues addressed included poverty, racism, sovereignty, health care, affirmative action and many more.

“In my opinion I see these concerns being symptoms of very large aspects of our society,” Buckanaga said. “One major one would be poverty. I see poverty playing into the hands of a lot of people and giving these symptoms to them.

The group in attendance, which was made up of priests, pastors, native and non-native people and other leaders in the community attempted to narrow the list into three areas of focus.

The debate went in circles, with many various opinions on the wording of these focus areas, but the group settled on poverty, health and corruption as the areas that the local community needs to focus on improving.

Buckanaga said he would have liked to see more representation from members of the Leech Lake, Red Lake and White Earth reservations as well as more participation from political leaders who were unable to attend, but said this meeting is the first of many to be held to begin addressing the issues mentioned.

“I am not discouraged that this is not a well attended,” Buckanaga said. “This is the first of many events that we are going to have to bring people together. I understand how people want to see some action now but it’s going to take a little bit. You have to be dedicated to this.”