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...

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

AFL-CIO Analysis of President Donald Trump’s FY 2018 Budget

Notice: The AFL-CIO addresses Trump's intent to slash $54 Billion from human needs but does not mention this fact reported by National Public Radio:

"Trump wants lawmakers to boost military spending in the coming fiscal year by 10 percent, or $54 billion. Rather than raise taxes or increase the deficit, the president is calling for equivalent cuts in other areas."

How is it the AFL-CIO ignored this?



AFL-CIO Analysis of President Donald Trump’s FY 2018 Budget

 AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka made the following statement regarding President Donald Trump’s proposed budget: 
“Working people in states like Ohio, Pennsylvania, Michigan and Wisconsin didn’t vote for a budget that slashes workforce training and fails to invest in our nation’s infrastructure. President Trump’s proposed budget attempts to balance the budget on the backs of working families. The $54 billion cut to programs that benefit working families is dangerous and destructive. Huge cuts to the departments of Labor, Education and Transportation will make workplaces less safe, put more children at risk and make improving our failing infrastructure much more difficult. The administration can and should do better.”
The budget abandons the future—slashing investments in workers, communities, young people, protecting our environment and building democracy. There are major cuts in job training, education, health programs, the environment, the arts and foreign aid. Research programs in science and medicine are slashed. Sixty-two government programs/agencies are slated for elimination.
Here are some key highlights:
Department of Labor: Overall cut $2.5 billion (-20.7%)
The budget makes it harder for workers to get the training they need in order to advance in their industry and to compete globally.
  • Major cuts:
    • Job training/employment/re-employment
    • Senior Community Service Employment Program eliminated
    • Job Corps
    • Bureau of International Labor Affairs (ILAB) grants eliminated
    • Safety and health training grants eliminated
Department of Health and Human Services: Overall cut $12.6 billion (-16.2%)
People suffering from terminal diseases will be affected by lack of new medicines, and low-income workers will not receive assistance to heat their homes during the cold months of winter.
  • Cuts National Institutes of Health (NIH) funding by 18.3% (-$5.8 billion)
  • Eliminates the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP), which provides assistance to help low-income people heat and cool their homes
  • Eliminates $403 million in health professions and nursing training programs
  • Restructures the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and directs money to states through block grants
  • Increases funding for opioid prevention and treatment services by $500 million
Department of Education: Overall cut $9.2 billion (-13.5%)
This budget would destroy public schools and eliminate much-needed training for teachers. It also makes it harder for young people to go to college.
  • Increases funding for school choice by $1.4 billion
    • Redirects $418 million to private/charter schools
    • Eliminates $2.4 billion for Supporting Effective Instruction state grants
    • Reduces or eliminates funding for teacher-preparation programs (State Teacher Quality/Supporting Effective Instruction grants)
    • Eliminates federal funding for before- and after-school and summer-school programs
    • Eliminates the Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant program, which provides grants for students with the greatest need
Department of State: Overall cut $10.9 billion (-28.7%)
The budget would harm workers around the world who are standing up to multinational corporations and repressive governments that restrict workers’ rights and lower wages.
  • Cuts funding for U.N. programs
  • Reorganizes and consolidates U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) programs
Department of Treasury: Overall cut of $0.5 billion (-4.4%)
These cuts allow the super-wealthy and corporations to get away with not paying taxes and allow big banks to crush small community banks.
  • Cuts IRS by $239 million
  • Eliminates funding for the Community Development Financial Institutions Fund
Department of Transportation: Overall cut $2.4 billion (-12.7%)
This will mean less investment in railroads and airlines at a time when our nation has an infrastructure deficit of over $4 trillion.
  • Privatizes air traffic control 
  • Restructures and cuts federal subsidies for Amtrak
  • Cuts funding for the Federal Transit Administration’s Capital Investment Grant Program
Commerce: Overall cut $1.5 billion (-15.7%)
This will mean more resources to enforce our nation’s trade laws. Our current trade policy has put corporations ahead of workers—resulting in jobs shipped overseas and lower wages.
  • Strengthens International Trade Administration’s trade enforcement/compliance assistance
  • Eliminates the Economic Development Administration, the Minority Business Development Agency and the Manufacturing Extension Partnership
Environmental Protection Agency: Overall cut $2.6 billion (-31.4%)
These cuts will make our drinking water less safe and our air more toxic.
  • Claims to maintain funding for drinking water and wastewater infrastructure
  • Discontinues funding for Clean Power Plan
  • Reduces funding for Superfund cleanup
  • Eliminates 50 EPA programs
  • Cuts enforcement programs
Veterans Affairs: Overall increase $4.4 billion (+6.0%)
These funds provide much-needed resources for our nation’s veterans.
  • $4.6 billion increase for VA health care to improve access and timeliness of medical service
  • $3.5 billion in mandatory budget authority to extend and fund the Veterans Choice Program, which provides the option to see a private provider. The program was set to expire in August 2017.
Selected programs proposed for elimination
The budget targets for elimination arts and music programs and legal aid for the poor. Planning a future for the communities of Appalachia and protection from hazardous chemicals are also on the chopping block.
  • Appalachian Regional Commission
  • Advanced Technology Vehicles Manufacturing Loan Program
  • Chemical Safety Board
  • Corporation for Public Broadcasting
  • Legal Services Corporation
  • National Endowment for the Arts
  • National Endowment for the Humanities
  • Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC)
Contact: Carolyn Bobb (202) 637-5018

Richard Trumka and labor leaders met in San Antonio, Texas... but what do they intend to do about Trump and his reactionary agenda?

 Richard Trumka • March 10, 2017 • San Antonio, Texas
Thank you, Brother Mike [Sacco]. It’s great to be with you, and all the folks from the Maritime Trades.
Listen, these are challenging times for our labor movement and our nation. Pay is too low. Inequality is too high. Good jobs are few and far between. But over the past four or five years, something has changed. Working people are speaking out. We are shaping the debate. We want better. And we are making one thing abundantly clear: we do not work for any politician or political party. We will not be an ATM for the Democrats or a rubber stamp for the Republicans. We will lead with our issues and our values. We will put our members and families first. Political independence is the way forward. It will strengthen our credibility and effectiveness. And that’s how we build an America that works for working people.
Political independence allowed us to take on a Democratic president and defeat the job-killing Trans-Pacific Partnership. Political independence empowered us to stand up to a Republican president and defeat a no-good, wage-stealing, robot-loving nominee for Secretary of Labor. In both cases, we rallied in towns and cities across the country, flooded Congress with calls and e-mails and made our position clear. And we won. Remember that. We won.
Working people are leading the way. We’re building a political movement for good jobs and better lives. There is nothing more important in America right now. For decades, our economy has been tilted to favor the wealthy few at our expense. The vast majority of Americans want the rules of the economy to benefit us, not the rich, not the wealthy, not Wall Street. That’s what we are pushing for.
Good jobs and raising wages is how we will measure the Trump Administration. President Trump promised throughout his campaign to make life better for American workers. But talk is cheap. When the president does something good for working people and good for the economy, we’ll say so, and we’ll work for it. When he does things that are bad for working people and bad for the economy, that lower our wages and make our workplaces less safe, that threaten our pensions and health care, we will fight him every step of the way. President Trump gets to choose his path. In us, he will either have a constructive partner or an unrelenting, resourceful and tough opponent.
Brothers and sisters, the unions of the Maritime Trades show us all what solidarity looks like, and I want you to know that your priorities are my priorities. You’ve made a powerful statement by standing strong with the Bakery Workers who’ve lost jobs at Nabisco. You’re shoulder-to-shoulder with my union, the United Mine Workers, who are fighting to make sure America keeps its pension promises.
We are there for you, too, whether it’s protecting the Jones Act or getting the Export/Import Bank back up and running. We’ll stand with our Canadian sisters and brothers to win a stronger economy and a better tomorrow, and we thank you for your work blocking the bad trade agreement between Canada and Europe.
You know, a moment ago I mentioned our success fighting the TPP. I want to be clear about that. Never for a moment think America’s labor movement is flat-out against trade. It’s simply not true. We’re FOR good trade. We want to open new markets for American products made by American workers and businesses. Done right, trade can create jobs, lower costs and lift up working people. Done wrong, it can unleash a wave of economic devastation no family or community should ever have to endure. We’re for fair trade. We’re for pro-worker trade. Give us a seat at the table for the next trade agreement. We’ll make sure it works for working families. And then we’ll fight to pass it. But otherwise, forget it. The days of corporate-written trade deals are over.
We know firsthand how trade can produce good jobs with strong wages. Shipbuilders, longshoremen, seafarers, you name it, those are careers to be proud of. Union members in Philadelphia and San Diego are building new tankers and container ships. American workers right now are producing the world’s most modern ocean-going propulsion systems — liquefied natural gas. LNG power is cutting-edge, and it shows that North American labor and know-how remain the best in the world.
All we need is a chance.
In his speech last week to Congress, President Trump proposed a massive infrastructure investment — $1 trillion dollars. We’ve wanted that for years. It’s an ambitious proposal, and America needs it, but it had better come with Davis-Bacon and powerful Buy America provisions. We’ll gladly partner with President Trump for every single thing that working families need. But I had to wonder about all of those Congressional Republicans who stood up and cheered for investing in infrastructure. Where were they for the last 8 years when President Obama was proposing the very same thing? This is the type of partisan politics that drive our members crazy. So my message to Congress is this: Cut the crap. Pass a bill. Do it the right way. Put America to work.
Let me tell you something we don’t need: the so-called Cadillac Tax. This is a solidarity tax, plain and simple. We have given up wage increases time and time again to preserve our health care. We fought for it. We bargained for it. This tax was a bad idea when Democrats included it in the Affordable Care Act. And it’s a bad idea now that Republicans want it as part of their ill-advised repeal efforts. For more than a century, the labor movement has fought to make health care a right for every American. Congress should focus on improving and building on the Affordable Care Act, our current employment-based system, Medicare and Medicaid. Brothers and sisters, if you come after our health care, we will fight you tooth and nail.
We can, and we will, win a new set of rules for the American economy. It won’t be easy, but nothing worth doing ever is. And if for a minute you think it can’t be done, just consider that two years ago everybody and their brother thought the TPP was a done deal. And just a few weeks ago Andy Puzder looked like a slam dunk to be the next Secretary of Labor.
But working people had a different idea. We mobilized. We educated workers, and in the end, we came out on top. We learned a powerful lesson: nothing is inevitable. We saw activism work.
America wants more of that activism, not less. By a margin of two to one, registered voters want to increase Social Security benefits. By a margin of 3 to 1, folks want to tax companies on overseas profits and increase funding for public schools. People overwhelmingly support higher wages and more investments in infrastructure. And a growing number believe in unions! Make no mistake, momentum is on our side.
Brothers and sisters, America remains the wealthiest nation in the history of the world. We can support middle-class jobs and succeed. We can be pro-worker and pro-business. We can trade fairly and form unions freely. That’s what America is all about. But it will take hard work and solidarity.
Any economist will tell you consumer spending drives 70% of the American economy. When workers earn a living wage, we are more likely to buy a new washing machine, replace the tires on the car or take a long-overdue vacation. That’s why the best way to build a strong, sustainable economy is with wage-driven growth. When I help you up, it gives me a boost. When you help me up, the way gets easier for somebody else. It’s not easy. When it counts, solidarity is hard. We’ve got to stand together during the long night, when it’s cold, when the outcome is uncertain. That’s when it matters. Solidarity. Arms locked. Shoulder-to-shoulder. To win a better life!
That’s the American way. It’s the union way. It’s solidarity, and it works, brothers and sisters. You know how to win for America’s hard-working families. You’ve done it many, many times, and you’ll do it again tomorrow. When we stand together, we win together.
Thank you, God bless you and the work you do.

LBJ's "Great Society" was killed by the Vietnam War

Trump and his Budget Director, Mulvaney, are pushing a budget supported by less than 20% of the American people under the guise tax-payers don't like social programs and would rather have their taxes pay for militarism and war.


I notice there have been no polls asking the American people about this.


The polling question could be posed very straight forward:


Do you want your tax-dollars spent on social programs or wars?


As we all know, we can't have both wars and social programs.


Lyndon Johnson's "Great Society" was killed by his Vietnam War:


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KuuEFTgodc8


Even the capitalist economist, John Kenneth Galbraith, understood we can't have both "guns and butter."


We can have a great society but not one that includes spending on these dirty imperialist wars.
This is the way to the "Great Society;" there is no other way... ask your friends, neighbors and fellow workers to sign this petition... take this petition to the next demonstration against Trump you attend... let your member of Congress know you are circulating this petition... write a Letter to the Editor supporting peace as the way to prosperity for all... we can't have prosperity for all without peace... we can't achieve peace without a struggle:


Campaign for a “21st Century Full Employment Act for Peace and Prosperity”


We are fed up with politicians campaigning on promises of “Jobs, Jobs, Jobs” and then failing to make themselves legislatively responsible for attaining and maintaining full employment.


We are fed up with our tax dollars being squandered on militarism and wars instead of being used to create jobs by solving the problems of the people and defending our living environment… its time to beat swords into plowshares. Put people to work solving the problems of the people.


A National Public Health Care System would create over twelve-million new jobs paying real living wages providing people with free health care--- general medical, eyes, ears, dental, family planning and mental health--- through a network of neighborhood and community health care centers; this is a better use of our tax-dollars than wasting our human and financial resources on a far flung empire of over 800 U.S. military bases around the world. Or, it could be financed the same way Social Security is financed. Or paid for with a tax on Wall Street transactions. Or financed with a combination of these methods. Public funding. Public administration. Public delivery… nothing controversial; just like public education.


A National Public Child Care System would create over three-million new jobs providing working class families with free child care.


We need to restore the Comprehensive Employment and Training Act (C.E.T.A.), Works Progress Administration (WPA) and Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC).


“At Will Employment” legislation in states across the country needs to be rescinded and repealed to expand democracy in the workplace and provide workers with the right to freely participate in the communities where they live.


All attacks on immigrant workers, documented and undocumented, need to end.


Planned Parenthood needs to be defended and programs expanded.


We insist Congress and the president enact full employment legislation which makes them legislatively responsible for attaining and maintaining full employment; assure everyone who wants a job employment at real living wages in line with the actual cost-of-living.


Full employment would provide stability for Social Security; everyone paying in; everyone getting something out. A Basic Income for All must be guaranteed. Pensions must be honored and protected. The Wall Street swindle of pension funds must end; restore the Glass-Steagall Act.


Turn Habitat for Humanity into a massive public works project to create jobs and assure everyone has a decent home.


Free education through university; cancel student debt. End military recruitment in the high schools.


Unemployment and lack of a National Public Health Care System is the price we pay for militarism and wars. We are entitled to a Peace Dividend……...

Let’s talk about the politics and economics of livelihood.


Name                Address                                    City                                State                  E-mail
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On Jan. 4, 1965, President Lyndon Johnson outlined his goals for a Great Society in his State of the Union. You can watch and read his entire speech at http:...
youtube.com

Trump intends to shove a Wall Street budget created by the imperialist merchants of death and destruction down our throats

Trump has brought some real creeps into his cabinet. Steve Bannon and the Nazi Gorka aren't the worst of the lot, they have their equal in the Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney, whose claim is that social programs are not working for tax-payers.


Mulvaney intends to take the axe to Meals on Wheels, the school lunch program and now he admits Social Security programs, food stamps, Medicare and Medicaid are on the chopping block.


Mulvaney argues these programs don't work and tax-payers have told Trump they don't want these programs.


Mulvaney's budget has the support of less than 20% of the American people.


Of course, neither the billionaire Trump nor the racist Mulvaney who is apparently most comfortable at a cross-burning with a white sheet over his head never think of asking the people who benefit from these programs if they want to keep the programs, their suggestions for making the programs work better or if they think the programs should be expanded.


And neither Trump nor Mulvaney have asked tax-payers what they think about their plans to increase the defense budget for a new nuclear arms race, more spending on "modernizing" the armed forces with all kinds of new barbaric bombs and armaments and these dirty imperialist wars... all tantamount to dumping the Nation's wealth created by the working class into the deepest depths of the oceans for all the good this military spending does.


What we need is just the opposite of what Trump and his cabal of morons are doing.


This is what we need and are entitled to from government but this rotten and thoroughly corrupt Wall Street government will never consider... put this up against Trump's budget and let ALL the people decide:


Campaign for a “21st Century Full Employment Act for Peace and Prosperity”


We are fed up with politicians campaigning on promises of “Jobs, Jobs, Jobs” and then failing to make themselves legislatively responsible for attaining and maintaining full employment.


We are fed up with our tax dollars being squandered on militarism and wars instead of being used to create jobs by solving the problems of the people and defending our living environment… its time to beat swords into plowshares. Put people to work solving the problems of the people.


A National Public Health Care System would create over twelve-million new jobs paying real living wages providing people with free health care--- general medical, eyes, ears, dental, family planning and mental health--- through a network of neighborhood and community health care centers; this is a better use of our tax-dollars than wasting our human and financial resources on a far flung empire of over 800 U.S. military bases around the world. Or, it could be financed the same way Social Security is financed. Or paid for with a tax on Wall Street transactions. Or financed with a combination of these methods. Public funding. Public administration. Public delivery… nothing controversial; just like public education.


A National Public Child Care System would create over three-million new jobs providing working class families with free child care.


We need to restore the Comprehensive Employment and Training Act (C.E.T.A.), Works Progress Administration (WPA) and Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC).


“At Will Employment” legislation in states across the country needs to be rescinded and repealed to expand democracy in the workplace and provide workers with the right to freely participate in the communities where they live.


All attacks on immigrant workers, documented and undocumented, need to end.


Planned Parenthood needs to be defended and programs expanded.


We insist Congress and the president enact full employment legislation which makes them legislatively responsible for attaining and maintaining full employment; assure everyone who wants a job employment at real living wages in line with the actual cost-of-living.


Full employment would provide stability for Social Security; everyone paying in; everyone getting something out. A Basic Income for All must be guaranteed. Pensions must be honored and protected. The Wall Street swindle of pension funds must end; restore the Glass-Steagall Act.


Turn Habitat for Humanity into a massive public works project to create jobs and assure everyone has a decent home.


Free education through university; cancel student debt. End military recruitment in the high schools.
Unemployment and lack of a National Public Health Care System is the price we pay for militarism and wars. We are entitled to a Peace Dividend……...


Let’s talk about the politics and economics of livelihood.