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...

Friday, May 15, 2015

REAL PROGRESSIVES TALK ABOUT MILITARISM, WAR AND MILITARY SPENDING!

Fellow Activists,
With your help, on Day 1, we passed the 200 mark in signers on the petition "Real progressives talk about militarism, war and military spending!"
But if we want to be heard, we need to make a bigger noise and that will take a lot more folks doing what you did - signing the petition. With your help, we can pass the 500 signer marktomorrow.
Please promote the petition in organizations to which you belong and on listservs, Facebook and Twitter.  Let friends know you signed and invite them to do the same.
Here's the link to the petition:
Here is a short version of the URL: http://bit.ly/1RG7cvX
You can send the text below or modify it as you like.
US Labor Against the War (USLAW) has launched a petition on RootsAction.org that calls on all those who identify as "progressives" who seek our political support to speak out forcefully, with clarity and passion, for a new definition of national security that puts the welfare of our people and the planet ahead of the interests of the Pentagon brass, military contractors, multinational corporations and the military-industrial complex.

They can't pretend that military spending, war and our militarized foreign policy are not as important to a progressive agenda as inequality, poverty, jobs, racism and climate change. A real progressive agenda should address all of those.
Demilitarizing our economy and foreign policy is key to solving many of our other social problems.

If you agree, I urge you to sign and get others to sign.  The more that do, the more likely this message will be heard and respected by politicians who count on our support.
Here is the sample text of a Tweet:
Progressive pols who want our support need to hear this. If you agree,sign,like,forward,share.http://bit.ly/1RG7cvX #progressive #Sanders
Thanks for all you do to make this a better, more just and peaceful world,
Michael Eisenscher
National Coordinator
U.S. Labor Against the War (USLAW)
www.USLaborAgainstWar.org
Twitter: @USLAWLeader
FB: labor.against.war
Email: info@uslaboragainstwar.org


REAL PROGRESSIVES TALK ABOUT MILITARISM, WAR AND
MILITARY SPENDING!

TO: BERNIE SANDERS, ELIZABETH WARREN
AND ALL OTHER PROGRESSIVES

Real progressives talk about militarism, war and military spending!
351 
of 400 signatures

Campaign created by Michael EisenscherIcon-email

We call upon all those who seek our political support to speak out forcefully, with clarity and passion, for a new definition of national security that puts the welfare of our people and the planet ahead of the interests of the Pentagon brass, military contractors, multinational corporations and the military-industrial complex.

Why is this important?

*Populist*: someone who embraces a political doctrine that appeals to the interests and conceptions (such as hopes and fears) of the majority of people, as opposed to the interests of the elite. 
*Progressive*: a person advocating or implementing social reform or new, liberal ideas. 
_______________________________________________________________ 
The election season is upon us. Politicians, whether candidates themselves or supporting others, are criss-crossing the country hoping to harvest campaign donations and, down the road, our votes. Many will tell us what we want to hear, whether they believe it or not. Others will tell us what they want us to hear, whether they mean it or not.
Those who identify as progressives espouse populist ideas and speak passionately about inequality, poverty, racism and the need for fundamental reforms. They generally want government to be an active instrument to promote and secure a higher standard of living, greater economic and social equality, a society that is tolerant of differences and that values and protects human rights, social justice and the common good – all necessary elements of a progressive populist agenda.
Necessary but not sufficient!
All too often Progressives who are passionate and outspoken about the need to provide good jobs at living wages, reduce inequality, eliminate poverty, protect the planet and advance social justice suffer from a debilitating political condition known as *MAD* (Militarism Acknowledgment Dysfunction) or *PEP* (Populist Except for Pentagon).
This condition makes it difficult to connect their laudable domestic agenda to the reality that our economy and foreign policy are militarized and operate in the interests of multinational corporations and the military-industrial complex.
The US is addicted to militarism.
With 57% of all discretionary spending going to the Pentagon, war and nuclear weapons - even with significant tax reform - it will be impossible to implement an ambitious progressive agenda without cutting bloated runaway military spending and Pentagon waste, fraud and abuse. And to do that will require the US to abandon its militarized foreign policy and stop trying to militarily subordinate the rest of the world to a neoliberal agenda.
We need to reassess what is required to achieve real “national security.” Rather than measuring our security on the basis of the size and power of our military, the advanced state of its weapons and our government’s ability to instill fear in others, **we should measure our security based on the welfare of people and the planet, and the respect our government earns in the rest of the world.**
Anyone who wants our support as a progressive must have as much to say about militarism, war and military spending as about climate security, economic security, human rights and social justice. They are all essential elements of a progressive agenda. All are required to have real national security.
If you agree, please sign and urge others to sign.

DEADLY AMTRAK CRASH, DETERIORATING TRANSPORTATION INFRASTRUCTURE WAKE-UP CALL TO CONGRESS


Transit Union calls for Long-Term Investment in Transportation

Washington, DC – “Our national priorities as set by Congress and the White House are incoherent. What other government would squander its wealth in endless wars while allowing our people to be put at risk by failing, outdated transportation systems?” asks the Amalgamated Transit Union (ATU) in the wake of the recent deadly Amtrak accident and a House committee proposal to cut Amtrak funding. 
While early reports say excessive speed was a factor in this tragic accident, the lack of positive train control that would have automatically slowed the engine down and the well-documented poor condition of our nation's rail system is just the latest example of the way in which Congress refuses to adequately fund transportation. 
“Our bridges are crumbling, our transit is failing and rail is becoming more dangerous every day. This is not a question of us not having the money to save our country. We are lavishing the military industrial complex with the resources that could be spent ensuring that our people can travel safely,” says Larry Hanley, ATU international president. 
“Tragically, we can expect to see an increasing number of these terrible accidents unless more is appropriated to repair the tracks, and meet the federally mandated deadline for deployment of positive train control by the end of the year.” 
Similar dangers exist in public transit. That’s why ATU is urging Congress to act now to pass a complete, six-year transportation authorization bill and dedicated tax to bring our rails, roads and bridges up-to-date, and repair, maintain, and expand mass transit in America. 
"Our nation’s transportation network – including mass transit – is in dire need of repair and maintenance,” says Hanley. “The lives already lost should be all the motivation Congress needs to repair, revitalize and ensure safe travel on our national transportation network. 
"Yet, Congress is cutting Amtrak’s budget, and ignoring this month’s deadline for reauthorizing U.S. transit and highway funding. The safety and reliability of public transport erodes with each passing day that Congress neglects the problem. 
“The rails, roads, and transit systems built to serve the personal and economic needs of our urban areas simply cannot support the volume of traffic we have today," says Hanley. "Our nation’s transportation infrastructure is ailing and needs fixing now." 
Just this week there was another fire on Washington, DC’s Metro system following a fire in January that killed one rider and injured others. In March a bridge collapsed outside of Austin, TX, killing one.  
"This tragic Amtrak accident should alert Congress to the need for adequate funding of our transportation infrastructure," Hanley warned. "Their continued intransigence will lead to much greater expense, more lives lost, and national and economic paralysis. It’s time to act before it’s too late.”

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

A "debate" between Warren and Obama over the Trans-Pacific Partnership?

Some people are pushing for Obama to debate Elizabeth Warren over the TPP.

But, has Warren even challenged Obama to debate the TPP; or, has she agreed to debate Obama?


Quite frankly, I think Warren is pulling off a cheap political stunt in claiming to oppose the TPP that is part of the Democratic Party's plan to keep the left from leaving the Democratic Party. Leaving people with "hope" they can find solutions to their problems inside of the Democratic Party when nothing can be further from the truth; this is as much a lie as the lies that Obama and the Republicans use to shove the TPP down our throats on Wall Street's behalf.

Obama began his presidency after claiming to be against Wall Street by solving Wall Street's problems instead of the problems of working people and now in ending his presidency, Obama intends to provide Wall Street  with an even bigger gift--- the TPP.

To demand that Obama debate someone who has not agreed to debate seems to be a waste of time.

Why not demand Obama debate a real opponent of Wall Street's imperialist agenda?

Are there no workers capable of debating Obama?

Quite frankly, I don't think Elizabeth Warren is capable of defending the interests of the working class in a debate with Obama as she has stated her intent is to "curb Wall Street" when the real struggle is to take political and economic power away from Wall Street and bring to power an anti-imperialist/anti-monopoly coalition led by working people. This is the real sentiment of the American people--- this has been the sentiment of the American people for well over 100 years which Wall Street has been so adept at suppressing in so many ways including having the politicians it backs making claims they are opposed to Wall Street's interests. Elizabeth Warren is a Wall Street millionaire many times over. She has no concept of the everyday problems of working people beyond the words her speech writers include for her. Not once has she--- or Bernie Sanders--- mentioned the cost-of-living crisis each and every working class family is experiencing in so many ways.

Politicians like Obama, Clinton/s, Warren and Sanders have no problem coming to workers looking for votes under false pretenses but their arrogance and disdain for workers shows through completely when workers challenge their views and positions which are one and the same or at least acceptable to Wall Street's interests.

If it is too difficult to find a worker willing to step forward to debate Obama, Clinton, Warren and Sanders on the TTP, and the other initiative with Europe no one seems to want to talk about, the TTIP--- the TransAtlantic Trade and Investment Partnership, I volunteer for the job.

After all, why shouldn't there be a forum with all views, including working class views, presented instead of just the views of politicians loyal to Wall Street in one way or another?

But, I reiterate my initial question in conclusion:

Has Elizabeth Warren taken the initiative to challenge Obama to a public debate in which they do not receive canned questions posed as no challenge is made to Wall Street's real imperialist agenda?

If not, why should we participate in such a charade which is part of maintaining Wall Street's two-party trap?

Obama shows how two-faced he is when he says there is nothing secret in the TPP yet all the details pertinent to a real debate are being withheld from working people in this country and those countries part of the agreement.

A real debate will take place over the TPP and TTIP once we begin building the appropriate anti-imperialist/anti-monopoly movement with the intent to take political and economic power away from Wall Street... a movement that must include plans for a working class based people's party for peace, social and economic justice.

Alan L. Maki

Saturday, May 9, 2015

For potato farmers, "organic" means hard labor

by: David Bacon
May 8 2015

By seven thirty in the morning it is already 80 degrees in a potato field in Lamont, in the southern San Joaquin Valley. By mid-afternoon here it will reach 107. The workers moving up and down the rows are not dressed in shorts and tank tops, though. They wear multiple layers of clothing, including long sleeves and, in the case of women, bandannas that cover their faces, leaving only their eyes visible.

Farmworkers know how to handle heat. They work in these intense conditions every day. ''Clothing is like insulation,'' says Evelina Arellano. ''It actually protects you. And if I didn't wear my bandanna, by the end of the day it would be hard to breathe because of the dust.''

The rows are as long as two football fields, each a deep furrow next to a mound bearing the potato plants. Between the potatoes grow weeds, some spreading out next to the dirt and others growing as tall as the workers themselves. On this day in mid-June the farm labor crew is pulling the weeds.

Men and women walk from weed to weed, bending down low, pulling each out by the roots. You can hear the breath expelled by each effort to tear a big one from the ground.

Everyone carries a bag on his or her back, and stuffs the weeds into it. As workers move down the rows, the bags expand and get heavy. The weeds are scratchy, even with gloves, and as the morning wears on, the sun gets hotter. There is a lot of dust everywhere in the air in the southern San Joaquin Valley, which has some of California's worst air quality. Soon you are unable see to the far edge of the field next to this one.

If this were a potato field like most in the valley, the dust would contain pesticide and herbicide residue. Here the dust may be unpleasant, but it is not toxic, because the field is growing organic potatoes for one of California's largest producers of organic vegetables, Cal Organic Farms.

Potato plants take from three to four months to grow to maturity, and this field contains anywhere from 17,000 to 22,000 plants. Probably back in late February or early March, it was seeded with potatoes or pieces of potatoes that contain the eye, from which the new sprout grows. Cal Organic Farms says it can get two crops a year in the San Joaquin Valley.

This field is almost ready to be harvested, and weeds can interfere with the operation of the mechanical harvester. Weeds also compete for water, not a minor factor given California's drought, and can provide an environment for pests that can damage the tubers.

So a healthy attractive organic potato-ready for au gratin, potato salad, or your grandmother's adobo-is much more a product of workers' labor than the non-organic kind. Organic produce not only has created somewhat healthier conditions for these farmworkers, it has also meant more work. Since the grower cannot use herbicides, weed removal is accomplished by hand. That means workers are hired to remove them, instead of spraying the field with chemicals.

Cal Organic Farms grows a variety of vegetables, and other operations also require human labor instead of chemical inputs. As a result, the work season for a Cal Organic crew lasts longer than for many other farmworkers. ''I started on January 27th,'' explains Josefina Reyes, ''and I'll work until November 1st.''

Hernandez and her husband, Alfredo, are the oldest workers in the crew. They are no longer able or willing to do what others do to get nine months of work a year: hit the road to northern California or even Oregon and Washington. Organic farming gives them enough work so that they can live in Lamont year-round. If they save their money, they will be able to make it through the three months of winter when growers are not hiring.

At lunch break the couple talk to each other quietly in Mixteco, an indigenous language that was spoken in their hometown of Tlaxiaco, in the Mexican state of Oaxaca, long before Columbus arrived in the Americas. Everyone else in the crew comes from Mexico as well, and a few others also speak Mixteco. Indigenous migrants now make up most of the people coming across the border into California fields, and already constitute about thirty percent of the farm labor workforce here.

For lunch small groups of friends sit together at the side of the field, and some build small fires to heat their tacos. One popular taco filling is chorizo, the spicy Mexican sausage, mixed with papas, or potatoes. Organic potatoes are expensive in the market, but these workers are surrounded by fields of them. Many like the idea of eating food with no pesticides as much as anyone-maybe more. Farmworkers are exposed to much greater pesticide levels than what is contained in food. Many here in this crew worked in sprayed fields earlier in their work lives, and pesticide residue is omnipresent in small farmworker towns like Lamont.

Natalia Arevalo is the mayordoma, or forelady, for the crew in this field. An older, garrulous woman, she jokes with some workers but appears to watch others intently. Reyes considers her a good mayordoma, because Arevalo does small things to make the work easier. She tells them to stop several times an hour to drink water, ''but not much at a time, because drinking too much will make you sick in the heat,'' she warns. As the crew moves through the field, Arevalo moves the trailer carrying the water thermos and bathrooms so that it is close to the rows where they are working, and she does not complain if they stop to use them. ''I worked for another forelady who would yell at us if we stopped, and who never moved the trailer so it was always a long walk away,'' Reyes says.

As the workers walk up and down the rows, they pull the weeds and fill the bags until the bags are almost as big as they are. A full bag can weigh forty pounds or more, so Gonzalez will let them go down to the end of the row and empty it before it gets completely full and heavy. ''That other forelady would always yell at us to make us work faster, and had us fill the bags up before we could empty them,'' Reyes remembers. ''At the end of the day my back would really hurt from carrying and pulling them. Now it's not so bad.''

Started by Danny Duncan in 1983, Cal Organic Farms was sold in 2001 to Grimmway Farms, one of the largest organic growers in the country with about six thousand employees. The company uses Esparza Enterprises as its labor contractor. Both Arevalo and the other mayordoma run crews for Esparza.

Labor contractors hire and pay workers, making their profit from the difference between what the grower pays to pull the weeds in a potato field, for instance, and the actual wages the contractor pays the workers who do it. Abuse is inherent in this work system, since the more workers are pushed and the lower their wages, the larger the profit mar- gin. In this field workers are getting nine dollars an hour, just over minimum wage.

From the late 1960s to the early 1980s, Lamont and the southern San Joaquin Valley were strongholds of the United Farm Workers of America (UFW), the union founded by Cesar Chavez, Larry Itliong, and Dolores Huerta. At the height of the UFW's strength, the base wage for farm labor in this area was two to three times the minimum wage. Translated into today's terms, this would be $16-24 per hour. One method the union used to get wages up was to ban labor contractors, and instead to operate union hiring halls. In the 1980s the union lost most of its contracts here, the hiring halls disappeared, growers went back to using contractors, and wages fell. Worker abuse increased as well. Low wages and abuse are as prevalent in organic agriculture as they are in the non-organic sector. Case records at the California Occupational Safety and Health Agency (Cal OSHA) show that organic growers and contractors have engaged in practices that were prohibited forty years ago.

In 1975 the UFW and California Rural Legal Assistance won an historic regulation, #3456, banning the short-handled hoe. This was the first such prohibition in the nation's agriculture. Before it was adopted, workers using the short- handled hoe could be made to move quickly down the rows, bent over double and chopping at the weeds. They paid a high price later, however. Because they worked bent over for hours at a time, workers developed permanent back injuries after years of this labor. Later Cal-OSHA also banned knives and other short-handled instruments for weeding.

Organic growers then won an exception, however. Arguing that they could not use chemicals to control weeds, they were allowed to have workers weed by hand, even if they had to bend over to do it, so long as they were given an extra five minutes of break time every four hours. Handing out short- handled tools is still forbidden, however, and Esparza was fined twice in the last year for violating section #3456.

Esparza also got in trouble over sexual harassment. In 2006 the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission filed suit against Grimmway and Esparza after a worker, Ana-Berta Rubio, said she had been constantly pressured to have sex with a supervisor, who also groped and exposed himself to her. After complaining she was fired. According to EEOC attorney William Tamayo, three others had similar experiences. Jeffrey Green, Grimmway's general counsel, denied the charges. A year later the company settled the suit by paying Rubio $175,000 and taking other measures.

UFW founder Dolores Huerta, who today heads a foundation in nearby Bakersfield, says women rarely complain about either labor law violations or sexual harassment for fear of being fired. ''What she's worried about is not only losing her job; she's worried that her husband will lose his job, or her brother or her boyfriend or somebody in the family,'' Huerta told NPR.

At the local high school in nearby Arvin, Jackson Serros, director of the migrant program, says teachers warn their students, ''If you don't go to college, you're going to Grimmway University.'' But Rosalinda Guillen, director of Community2Community, a farmworker advocacy group in Washington State, says workers do not think their jobs have to be demeaning. ''The world should treat them as professionals, not just cheap labor,'' she urges.

Guillen and other advocates say the organic food industry especially should hold itself to high standards for labor practices, as part of sustainable and healthy methods for producing food. She is a leader of the Domestic Fair Trade Association, which has formulated a set of principles to guide organic producers. ''Fair Trade is synonymous with fair wages, fair prices, and fair practices,'' it declares, which should be ''environmentally, economically, and socially just, sustainable, and humane.''

The organic potatoes from the Lamont field by now have been harvested, and are sitting in the bins at stores, and in the potato drawer in kitchens across the country. The weeding crew has moved on to some other field, getting the next vegetable ready for its journey to the plate. Despite their hard work, however, it often seems as though these workers live in a different dimension. We may eat the food they produce, but most people do not know what it is like to labor out in the heat and dust, or what it takes to get food onto the dinner table.

Those broccoli florettes sauteed in cheese and wine, the green onions chopped onto that fish steamed with soy sauce and sesame oil, the carrots in that chilled potato salad-they all came from somewhere. That somewhere is likely a field like the one in Lamont. And the hands that pulled the weeds, so those vegetables would flourish, belong to Josefina and Alfredo Reyes, Natalia Arevalo, Evelina Arellano and others like them.

They are connected to us. We all eat the product of their labor.

Note: The names of the workers in the field have been changed.

Polls are showing Bernie Sanders has 15% of the support going into the primary against Hillary Clinton

Come on now, is this really a challenge to Hillary Clinton?

A challenge would be what George McGovern pulled off.

We are being played for suckers. Bernie Sanders is part of the Hillary Clinton campaign.

Sander's 15% is very important to Clinton and the Democrats because these are the people who will most likely actually do something to get out the votes as far as door-knocking, making phone calls, posting to the Internet, etc.

Should this 15% leave the Democratic Party and start a third party, the Democrats would be in big trouble especially with elections being won by ever smaller percentages and so many of these people not likely to participate in Democratic Party campaigns.

But, the question still not answered is why, if Bernie Sanders has an activist base of 175,000 as he claims, why doesn't he run a campaign outside of the Democratic Party?

Carl Davidson and hid Progressive Democrats are a bunch of phonies. Davidson implores people to support the Democrats and he admits he doesn't even go to Democratic Party precinct caucuses or conventions seeking to change the policies of the Democratic Party because he knows if he were to mobilize people inside the Democratic Party based on the issues he would be tossed out of the Democratic Party. McGovern ended up being ostracized from the Democratic Party for decades after he won the Democratic Party nomination just like here in Minnesota the members of the socialist Minnesota Farmer-Labor Party were red-baited out of the Democratic Party after Hubert H. Humphrey got the merger he wanted between the Minnesota Farmer-Labor Party and the Minnesota Democratic Party. Even a sitting governor, Rudy Perpich, was ostracized from his own Democratic Party after he called for increasing the taconite tax on the iron ore mining industry.

I don't think most people understand that there are no legal controls over how a political party operates. They can break their own rules and purge anyone they want to and if necessary they make no bones over the fact that any elected officials who takes up with a truly left agenda face being summarily primaried.

Bernie Sanders makes a mockery of health care reform when he claims the Democrats started reform with Obamacare because he knows the Democrats won't even tolerate discussion of single-payer let alone the real solution to this health care mess a National Public Health Care System which would also create some twelve-million new jobs if the military/war budget were cut to finance health care, instead.

Carl Davidson and his Progressive Democrats of America and his Progressives for Obama refuse to introduce such solutions into the political mix in this country--- why?

Bernie Sanders is playing us all for fools using the linguistics provided by the racist red-baiter George Lakoff. These people want us to believe their "progressive sounding policy directives" are one and the same as calling for specific solutions to our problems when they are nothing more than political trickery and chicanery wrapped in "properly framed" jargon intended, not to solve problems, but to get votes for a bunch of worthless Democrats who, just like their Republican counterparts have continually been engaged in pushing this country so far to the right that even Richard Nixon looks good when compared to Obama or Hillary Clinton.


Every single politician in this country--- Democrat or Republican--- is using left sounding rhetoric to drum up support which begs the question:

If left wing policies are so popular, why don't we start a new political party whose base would be liberal, progressive and left?

Just look at the proposed Minimum Wage "increase" brought forward by Patty Murray and a bunch of "progressive Democrats."

They say they want to increase the Minimum Wage but what they fail to tell us is that their "increase" would only bring the Minimum Wage "up" to the purchasing power of the Minimum Wage in 1968!


Really; is this a reform?


Are we so stupid that we will accept Hillary Clinton's and Bernie Sander's new "economic populism" which has no connection to financing militarism and wars as if squandering the wealth of the Nation on Wall Street's imperialist has no impact on whether or not we can finance real reforms making life better for working people?

Monday, May 4, 2015

Bernie Sanders stalking horse for Hillary Clinton

Bernie Sanders has already endorsed Hillary Clinton for president on numerous occasions; why do you think he is speaking at Democratic Party fundraisers? These people are playing us for fools. Bernie Sanders is nothing but a stalking horse for Hillary Clinton just as he was for Bill Clinton and Barack Obama. Bernie Sanders is helping assure working people stay caught in the two-party trap.

Here he is sitting as an "independent" calling himself a "socialist" but he doesn't lift his finger to support other "independents" let alone socialists for public office.

Instead of supporting other independents and socialists here he is supporting Wall Street warmongers like Obama and Hillary Clinton just like he supported Bill Clinton--- another Wall Street warmonger.

Bernie Sanders is not supporting the Hillary Clinton who worked with Saul Alinsky nor is he supporting the Hillary Clinton who worked for George McGovern in Texas. This is a very different and completely changed Hillary Clinton who has learned to brown nose the wall Street crowd.

Unlike George McGovern, Hillary Clinton is a Wall Street warmonger.

Bernie Sanders has stated repeatedly he is looking at Hillary Clinton's domestic economic policies which he views as some kind of "economic populism" that is perverted because it fails to look at and consider the huge waste of our Nation's resources on militarism and wars which serve the sole purpose of Wall Street's thoroughly reactionary agenda driven solely by the motivation of Wall Street's greed for maximum profits--- steal the resources of others using exploited cheap labor and then turning around and using more exploited cheap labor to manufacture goods and services sold back to Americans and others at highly inflated prices through monopoly price-fixing schemes and scams.

Hillary Clinton backs Wall Street's wars and she backs Wall Street's Trans-Pacific Partnership and the TransAtlantic Trade and Investment Partnership which will destroy jobs and lower wages here in the United States yet she is silent on all of this while promoting her new four point economic populism to the American people looking for votes after having already secretly assured the Wall Street crowd that they will continue to get their wars and trade agreements and their oil and gas pipelines.

How is it the "independent socialist" Bernie Sanders can ignore all of this as he pretends to challenge Wall Street when his true motivation in running is to keep working people hooked to the Democratic Party against their best interests?

Bernie Sanders has added the word "peace" to his campaign rhetoric even though he has continually voted to pump billions of our tax dollars into the Israeli killing machine. This is not a voice for peace. Nor is Sanders a voice for justice lest one can dismiss his support for the Israeli killing machine in the same way Hillary Clinton's four points of "economic populism" can be supported while disregarding the effect spending on militarism and wars is having on the economy.

The mess we are in as a result of Wall Street controlling the levers of government through their bribery of the politicians can never be resolved as long as we accept Wall Street's imperialist agenda which is being carried out by both the Democrats and Republicans who push this concept of "bi-partisan unity."

This "bi-partisan unity" is demonstrated at every twist and turn albeit in some very convoluted, twisted and perverted ways which at times appear to pit Democrats against Republicans (along with the lone "independent socialist" Bernie Sanders) when, in fact, only a very mean and vicious game is being played out at the expense of most Americans along with the rest of the world especially when it comes to the rights and livelihoods of working people.

Are Democrats Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders anti-imperialists? No; not by any stretch of one's imagination.

Make no mistake; Bernie Sanders is not an "independent" or he wouldn't be running in the DEMOCRATIC PARTY primary. Do you hear any Democrats complaining that Bernie Sanders should not be allowed to run in their primary because he is not an authentic Democrat?

George McGovern was an authentic progressive and anti-imperialist Democrat who these Wall Street Democrats would not tolerate--- not even after he won the Democratic Party's nomination. Instead, they put their support behind the sleazeball Richard Nixon... and these same Democrats heaped scorn on Lyndon Johnson for supporting George McGovern.

All of this should tell us why we as working people should have no interest in supporting Hillary Clinton or her stalking horse, Bernie Sanders.

We should be supporting for public office authentic socialists and anti-imperialists who take the time to explain the nature of U.S. (Wall Street's) imperialism and the connections between this economic mess and militarism and wars.