Tuesday, January 31, 2017

WFTU Statement for the racist presidential decree of USA Government

The WFTU representing 92 million workers in every corner of the world strongly condemns the racist presidential decree of USA Government which prohibits the entry of travelers from seven countries (Syria, Somalia, Sudan, Iran, Iraq, Libya, Yemen) in USA blaming them for “Islamic terrorism”, separating the peoples of the world according to religion.
Has President Trump forgotten that the ISIS was created, was financed, was armed and was supported by the USA governments headed by President Obama? The USA policy was the one that bloodied the peoples in Syria, Libya, Afghanistan, Iraq and elsewhere.
Racism and intolerance promoted by the capitalists and their governments intend to separate and to group the workers of the world turning against each other and not against them and their class.
In their effort, the capitalists exploit the terrorist attacks in Turkey and European countries and the recent murder of six Muslims while praying in Quebec, Canada. Ultimately aiming to take new measures against the peoples’ struggles and those who are resisting the plans of the imperialists.
The World Federation of Trade Unions, loyal to its internationalist principles, calls the workers of the world, regardless of religion, color and language to unite themselves under the banners of the class-oriented organizations and struggle against their common enemy, the capitalists and their class for a world without wars, poverty and racism. For a world without exploitation of man by man.
The WFTU demands the racist decree against the 7 countries to be withdrawn and expresses its solidarity to the families of the six Muslims that unjustly lost their lives in Quebec.

Saturday, January 14, 2017

Watch: Samantha Bee blasts Obama on deportation — and issues a grave warning about Trump

Samatha Bee on Barack Obama Legacy

Image result for Samantha Bee

Among late-night TV hosts, there aren’t many bigger fans of President Obama than Samantha Bee; that’s one of the few things she and Republicans would agree on. So it’s a bit surprising that Bee dedicated part of her second-to-last Full Frontal episode of Barack Obama’s presidency to pointing out one of the most inconsistent and cruel policies he has enacted.
On Wednesday night’s show, Bee called out President Obama’s deportation policies, specifically toward nonviolent criminals.

“I’m getting nostalgic,” she told a former immigration judge who had just informed her that Obama has deported millions of people since becoming president. “This is the last time I’ll be able to criticize Obama on my show. It’s also the first time.”
Obama has set deportation records; according to ABC News, his administration has deported around 2.5 million people from 2009 to 2015, while President George W. Bush’s administration deported just over 2 million people in his two terms. (The statistics for 2016 aren’t available yet.)
Bee pointed out that Obama ran on a platform where he said he wanted to deport “gangbangers,” violent criminals, and people hurting their community. But she explained that in practice, that aim has morphed into deporting people with criminal records.
Bee introduced a woman named Lundy, a taxpaying legal permanent resident with an American husband and child (and cute puppies!), who was caught with ecstasy after a party during her college years. Though she served time in prison and reenrolled in college, Lundy is now being deported because of Obama’s policy to deport criminal aliens.
“Are stories like Lundy’s an anomaly, or are they very common?” she asked former immigration judge Bruce Einhorn.
“Very common,” he replied. “The term ‘criminal alien’ doesn’t just cover the violent or drug-trafficking types. That includes minor offenses like possession of controlled substances.”
Bee spent the rest of the segment asking Obama for a presidential pardon for Lundy, but also pointing out how his policy might get worse under a Trump presidency.
“Trump’s considering deporting more than just the convicted,” she explains, before showing segments of the Trump administration promising to broaden the already seemingly broad definition of criminal to include the accused and suspected. “Pre-crime! What could go wrong?”

Tuesday, January 10, 2017


Rally for Devon Brown, 13 and unarmed when he was killed by the LAPD.  
It was ruled unjustifiable by the L.A. Police Commission, 
but the officers involved were not disciplined by Police Chief Bratton 
or indicted by the District Attorney’s office. 
Photo: Youth Justice Coalition



Student Union Building
5154 State University Drive, Room 308 (Los Angeles Room)
Los Angeles, CA 90032

AB 953, among other things, enacted Government Code section 12525.5, which requires state and local law enforcement agencies to collect data regarding stops of individuals, including perceived demographic information on the person stopped, and to report this data to the California Attorney General’s Office. AB 953 also requires the Attorney General to issue regulations for the collection and reporting of this stop data. (Gov. Code, § 12525.5, subd. (e).)  The Attorney General’s Office has drafted these proposed regulations, and Thursday is our opportunity to comment on them. You can review the proposed regulations here > oag.ca.gov/ab953/regulations   
See you on Thursday!!!
Thank you!!!


Student Union Building
5154 State University Drive, Room 308 (Los Angeles Room)
Los Angeles, CA 90032

Letter to UN Secretary-General by DPRK Permanent Representative

Image result for DPRK missiles

Pyongyang, January 6 (KCNA) -- The DPRK permanent representative to the United Nations sent a letter to the UN secretary-general on Thursday to make clear viewpoints regarding the letter addressed by the under secretary-general for Political Affairs, on behalf of the former UN secretary-general.
The letter said:
I want to begin with the conclusion that the letter addressed by the under secretary-general for Political Affairs is not the answer to my question on what is the legal ground for the UN Security Council "sanctions resolutions" against the DPRK over its nuclear tests and peaceful satellite launch.
In the letters to the former UN secretary-general dated May 23 and December 5, 2016 respectively, I questioned if there is any single article in international laws which stipulates that nuclear tests and satellite and ballistic rocket launches constitute a threat to international peace and security as a legal ground for the UNSC "sanctions resolutions" against the DPRK.
However, the UN Secretariat has only mentioned Article 39 in the UN Charter without any single word in response to my questions.
Article 39 of the UN Charter cannot be a legal ground for "sanctions resolutions" as was already discussed in international law community.
In 1966 when former Rhodesia declared independence from the British colonial regime the UNSC adopted a sanction resolution invoking Article 39 as its legal ground for the first time in the history of the UN. In this regard the international law community asserted that declaration of independence is not a threat to the peace or breach of the peace and labeled the adoption of the sanction resolution as an act of abuse of power. And even the writers of the UN Charter clarified that they had drafted Article 39 referring to an act of aggression, not to be invoked for a sanction in a peaceful time.
If any nuclear test or satellite or ballistic rocket launch were considered a "threat to international peace and security", the UNSC should have made an issue of and enforced sanctions on the United States and other countries regarding their nuclear tests of over 2 000 times, ongoing regular satellite and ballistic rocket launches.
This clearly proves that Article 39 of the UN Charter has no relation with any of nuclear tests or satellite launches.
The acts of fabricating an unlawful and immoral "sanction resolution", imposing sanctions of blockade and going as far as to include in the list of targets of sanctions even sports rifles or bullets and bows and arrows by the UNSC are nothing but an act against humanity and civilization, severely threatening the right to live of our people and destroying the modern civilization as well as making the whole world turn back to the medieval dark land.
The hydrogen bomb test, nuclear warhead test and test-firing of various means of strike including inter-continental ballistic rockets are all full exercise of the legitimate right as stipulated in the UN Charter, as self-defensive measures for deterrent power which can wipe out the source of provocation in case of the encroachment upon our sovereignty and right to existence by the hostile forces.
As long as the United States and its followers keep on nuclear threats and blackmails and as long as they do not stop their war games at our doorstep, disguising them as annual events, our self-defensive capabilities and the capability for preemptive strike with the nuclear armed forces as their pivot will be bolstered significantly.
I hope that the UN Secretariat will discharge its responsibility before the international community by pondering over the questions regarding a legal ground of the "sanctions resolutions" against the DPRK and by responding with impartial answers to them in conformity with the basic mission of the UN for international peace and security.

Sunday, January 8, 2017

NYC: TWU, MTA Open Main Table Talks

THURSDAY, JANUARY 5, 2017 -- TWU Local 100 President John Samuelsen and the union's leadership negotiating committee launched main-table contract negotiations with MTA brass Thursday morning at the Union Hall in downtown Brooklyn. Samuelsen laid out the union's demands, starting with wage increases that are greater than the 2% accepted by several state unions in late 2016. Samuelsen made it clear in his presentation to the MTA that 2% annual raises are not good enough for the transit workers who move New York.
"We don't want to just keep pace with inflation but get ahead," Samuelsen said. "We don't want to just tread water but gain ground." The union's other demands include better and more comfortable boots for transit workers, additional MTA funding to further improve dental care coverage, increases in longevity pay, and a no-layoff clause that doesn't leave loopholes for management to exploit. Several other economic and non-economic items also were presented and discussed. 

Under state law, the MTA doesn't have the authority to alter employee pensions. Still, the union wants the MTA to support legislation that would improve the pensions for workers who were hired after April 2012 and placed in the Tier 6 plan, Samuelsen said. Samuelsen was joined by Secretary-Treasurer Earl Phillips, Recording Secretary LaTonya Crisp Sauray, Local 100's Vice Presidents, Division Chairs and key staffers. The MTA delegation was led by Anita Miller, the authority's Chief Employee Relations and Administrative Officer. 

MTA Chairman Tom Prendergast made a rare and brief appearance to address the union leadership before the session got into the nuts-and-bolts issues. The main-table negotiations resume Monday.  
Issued By:
Transport Workers Union, Local 100
195 Montague St 3rd flr, Brooklyn NY 11201
212.873.6000 | www.twulocal100.org

Friday, January 6, 2017

Sign Our Petition to Protect Medicare!


For many years, Speaker of the House Paul Ryan has led an ideology-driven war on Capitol Hill over the face and future of Medicare, while the National Committee has fought his dangerous proposals every step of the way.Speaker Ryan's agenda for Medicare calls for privatizing the program for the benefit of huge insurance companies ... raising Medicare's eligibility age ... and shifting more health care costs onto beneficiaries like you.
The Ryan plan to dismantle traditional Medicare must be stopped. Because if it becomes law, here's what millions of beneficiaries can look forward to: 1) The government will give you a "voucher" to spend, like money, on your health insurance coverage, 2) The value of your voucher will be limited by law — it will not keep up with your rising costs, 3) This plan would make it harder for beneficiaries to choose their own doctors and 4) Only the healthiest and youngest — i.e., most profitable to cover — beneficiaries will find affordable private insurance.
Help us send a powerful and direct message to Speaker Ryan as he sets his agenda for our nation in the days ahead! Tell him "Hands Off Medicare!"

Why Workers Everywhere Should Be Scared by Kentucky’s Assault on Unions

January 6 - 12:54pm
The Nation Magazine

“A lot of working people voted for change in this election,” argued Bill Finn, the director of the Kentucky State Building and Construction Trades Council. “They didn’t vote for this. They didn’t vote for a pay cut.”
Finn got that right. Kentucky Republicans launched the new year with a race to enact sweeping anti-labor legislation, and they aren’t concerning themselves with the question of whether they have a mandate to assault labor unions and undermine wages and workplace protections in the Bluegrass State. They are moving immediately, aggressively, and thoroughly to implement an across-the-board assault on workers and the unions that represent them.
And with just two weeks to go before Donald Trump is inaugurated as president, Kentucky Republicans are doing something else. They are providing a powerful reminder of the threat to working families that arises when Republicans gain “trifecta control” (taking charge of the executive branch and both legislative chambers) of the governing process. Until this year, Democrats controlled the Kentucky House of Representatives and were able to block anti-labor legislation that was advanced by Republican Governor Matt Bevin and his allies in the Republican-controlled state Senate—with strong backing from national anti-union groups financed by the Koch brothers and other billionaire donors. But in November Republicans won a majority in the Kentucky House. That gave them complete control of the process, and they have made it their first priority to approve anti-labor measures.
Union busting is on a fast track in Kentucky, where Republican legislators have refused to even consider the arguments of workers, community leaders, responsible business owners, and academics who explain that assaults of worker rights do little or nothing to promote economic development—and much to harm working families. Among those expressing thoughtful opposition to the anti-union measures that are rapidly advancing in Kentucky was Bishop John Stowe of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Lexington, who the Kentucky AFL-CIO reported wrote in an open letter that “The weakening of unions by so-called ‘right to work’ laws, has been shown to reduce wages and benefits overall in the states where such laws have been enacted. This cannot be seen as contributing to the common good.”
When Republicans take full control of the executive and legislative branches of government, workers are threatened. 
Unfortunately, there was no stopping Kentucky’s newly empowered Republicans. They were on a deliberate and determined mission that was not going to be delayed by economic, social, or moral arguments. “The chants of union workers were little deterrent to Gov. Matt Bevin and his GOP colleagues in the Kentucky House and Senate, who have made approving the bills their top priority of the 2017 General Assembly,” the Lexington Herald-Leader reported on Wednesday afternoon. “Shouts and banging could be heard from the hallway, but the meeting room itself was packed with supporters as the House Committee on Economic Development and Workforce Investment passed House Bill 1, which would allow workers to avoid paying union dues even if they work under a union-negotiated contract, and House Bill 3, which would repeal the prevailing wage law.”
Kentucky is just one state. But Republicans there are following a playbook written by Republican governors such as Wisconsin’s Scott Walker. It suggests that, upon grabbing the reins of power, Republicans should move immediately to undermine unions that often support Democrats and that argue for maintaining public services and public education. Former Indiana governor Mike Pence, the incoming vice president, is a Walker-allied anti-labor zealot. And he is already working closely with House Speaker Paul Ryan, a Walker ally from Wisconsin, on the new administration’s agenda. Trump has already sent a strong anti-labor signal, with the nomination corporate CEO Andrew Puzder, a harsh critic of proposals to raise the federal minimum wage, to serve as secretary of labor.
No one should be fooled by this president-elect’s attempts to portray himself as a friend of workers. Trump and Pence were elected on a militantly anti-labor Republican platform that is dismissive of the federal minimum wage, declaring (in a stance similar to the one Trump appears to have evolved toward) that decisions about base hourly wages “should be handled at the state and local level.” It endorses the anti-union “right-to-work” laws enacted by Republican governors such as Walker, and calls for taking the anti-union crusade national with a proposal “for a national law” along “right-to-work” lines. The 2016 GOP platform also attacks the use of the Fair Labor Standard Act to protect workers; rips the use of Project Labor Agreements to raise wages and improve working conditions; and proposes to gut the 85-year-old Davis-Bacon Act, which guarantees “prevailing wage” pay for workers on federal projects.
There may still be a few Republicans who recognize the historic GOP position, as stated by President Abraham Lincoln, that “Labor is prior to and independent of capital. Capital is only the fruit of labor, and could never have existed if labor had not first existed. Labor is the superior of capital, and deserves much the higher consideration.” But they are few and far between. And the evidence from Kentucky suggests that the combination of a Republican president with a Republican House and Senate should be recognized as a threat to workers.
“Trump’s true priority [is] assaulting the rights of working people and helping corporate CEOs line their pockets.” 
Last July, after Trump selected Pence as his running mate, AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka said,
Everything Donald Trump says shows he is desperate to be working people’s friend, but everything Donald Trump does proves he is our enemy. This decision proves that he does not stand with working families. Mike Pence might be the right choice for Donald Trump, but he’s the wrong choice for America. We need leaders who will bring us together, not tear us apart. Mike Pence once again proves Donald Trump’s true priority of assaulting the rights of working people and helping corporate CEO’s line their pockets.
Trumka was right to be wary. Workers should be preparing, with a sense of urgency, to push back as the Republicans who control the White House and the Congress bring their anti-union agenda to Washington. 

America’s Gender Pay Gap Lasts a Lifetime

We’ve written a lot about how pay inequity has hurt generations of working women, not just while they’re on the job, but lasting throughout their retirement.   The economic challenges facing American women in retirement is the heart of our “Eleanor’s Hope” project, designed to raise awareness and advocate for legislation to address the inequities threatening millions of retired women.
“Over a working woman’s career, that pay gap could accumulate to a half million dollars in lost income and even more for women of color.  A comprehensive analysis of gender pay inequality, released by the Joint Economic Committee’s Democratic staff, shows how the gender pay gap grows over time.  It’s not just an issue for working women because this inequality can also have a compounding and devastating impact on retired women.
The thought of running out of money in retirement keeps 57% of women awake at night. That’s not a surprise when you consider the many combined factors which make retirement especially challenging for American women. Women earn less than men even when doing the same jobs, they more often work part-time or in jobs that do not offer retirement savings plans, and they tend to spend more time out of the workforce as a consequence of their caregiving responsibilities. Women could lose $430,480 in earnings over the course of a 40-year career due to the wage gap alone.”...Max Richtman, NCPSSM President/CEO
That is a staggering number. But what does it really mean to you?
A new tool created by the Economic Policy Institute allows women workers to calculate how much you could be earning, in an equal pay world.  Remember, that equal pay would have also meant a more equal retirement benefit.


Letter Endorsing Social Security 2100 Act

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February 03, 2015
Honorable John Larson
United States House of Representatives
Washington, D.C. 20515
Dear Representative Larson:
On behalf of the millions of members and supporters of the National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare, I write to endorse your legislation entitled the “Social Security 2100 Act.” The National Committee commends you for introducing this legislation, which extends the solvency of both the Old-Age and Survivors and the Disability Insurance Social Security trust funds throughout the 75-year valuation period.
Your bill gives all Americans confidence that Social Security will be there for them when they need it, whether they apply for retirement or disability benefits. Moreover, your bill achieves this while at the same time making important improvements to the benefits Social Security provides.
Included in the “Social Security 2100 Act” are the following benefit improvements:

  • An across-the-board increase for all beneficiaries of about 2 percent, a change that is projected to yield an annual increase for the typical retiree of $300;
  • Adoption of the Consumer Price Index for the Elderly (CPI-E) for the purpose of determining cost-of-living adjustments for Social Security beneficiaries;
  • Tax relief for Social Security beneficiaries due to an increase in the threshold for taxation of Social Security benefits to $50,000 for individuals and $100,000 for joint filers, up from $25,000 and $32,000 respectively; and
  • An increase in the special minimum benefit so that it equals up to 125 percent of the poverty level for an individual. This would be indexed in future years by increases in the average wage level prevailing in the national economy.
The “Social Security 2100 Act” strengthens Social Security’s financial foundations by increasing revenue dedicated to the support of the program. First, it extends the payroll tax to all wages paid to workers that are in excess of $400,000. Over time, the bill would completely eliminate the cap on Social Security payroll taxes. Second, the “Social Security 2100 Act” implements a small, gradual increase in workers’ and employers’ contributions to Social Security. Because the increase is phased in over a long period of time, the average worker would see his or her annual contributions to the Social Security program increase by about 50 cents per week.
The National Committee supports the provisions included in your bill, and proudly endorses the “Social Security 2100 Act.” This bill represents a bold step on behalf of seniors and all Americans by strengthening and safeguarding Social Security for future beneficiaries while at the same time making important improvements in the adequacy of the benefits the program provides. We look forward to working with you to enact this important legislation.


Max Richtman
President and CEO
National Committee to Preserve Social Security & Medicare

Support "Social Security 2100 Act"


The National Committee endorses the "Social Security 2100 Act," to be reintroduced shortly in the 115thCongress (2017-2018) by Rep. John Larson (CT-01). This important bill provides vital benefit improvements while strengthening Social Security’s financial foundations.

The "Social Security 2100 Act" would: 1) provide an across-the-board increase for all beneficiaries of about 2 percent, a change that is projected to yield an annual increase for the typical retiree of $300; 2) adopt a fair and far more accurate formula used to calculate the annual Social Security Cost-of-living Adjustment (COLA); 3) provide tax relief for Social Security beneficiaries due to an increase in the threshold for taxation of Social Security benefits to $50,000 for individuals and $100,000 for joint filers, up from $25,000 and $32,000, respectively and 4) give an increase in the special minimum benefit so that it equals up to 125 percent of the poverty level for an individual. This would be indexed in future years by increases in the average wage level prevailing in the national economy.

This important bill sharply contrasts the devastating proposal by Rep. Sam Johnson (TX-03), which would drastically cut benefits, reduce the Social Security COLA and raise the retirement age to 69. The National Committee is urging lawmakers in the new Congress to support Rep. Larson's critical bill which would cut taxes for some beneficiaries, increase benefits and prevent Americans from retiring into poverty.

Insider's Report: Radical Agenda Underway in Congress to Cut Benefits


While you and I and millions of Americans insist that the promise of Social Security and Medicare be upheld by our government, the fact remains that a radical agenda to slash earned benefits and privatize these vital programs is moving forward in the new Congress:

The powerful congressional majority in Washington is pushing forward their version of how to fix or save Social Security and Medicare — and this really means cutting benefits and handing over control of these programs to private industry. Speaker of the House Paul Ryan is leading the charge for ending traditional Medicare by privatizing it for the benefit of greedy insurance companies.

We anticipate House Social Security Subcommittee Chairman Sam Johnson (TX-03) will reintroduce legislation that would: 1) cut benefits by one-third, 2) raise the retirement age from 67 to 69, 3) change the benefit-computation formula in a way that cuts benefit amounts and 4) cut the Social Security Cost-of-Living Adjustment (COLA).
Health and Human Services Secretary nominee Tom Price wants to trigger cuts to Social Security and Medicare. His agenda would enable automatic across-the-board cuts to Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid and other programs for low- and middle-income Americans. This plan would rig the system and slash benefits without requiring the President or Congress to take responsibility for the result. 

What's worse, the President-elect's cabinet is full of Social Security and Medicare privatization supporters. In fact, Vice President-elect Mike Pence is a well-documented privatization proponent. President-elect Trump, who promised "not to touch" Social Security and Medicare during the campaign, advocates "reform" on his transition website and nominated a fervent privatizer, former U.S. Representative Tom Price, as Secretary of Health and Human Services.

There can be no doubt that harmful bills targeting your earned benefits will quickly follow in the new Congress. That's why the National Committee is gathering millions of petition signatures demanding that Congress keeps its hands off of earned benefits. We are organizing phone banks and letter writing campaigns to our elected representatives. Borrowing a campaign idea from Mr. Trump, we also need to build a wall — a firewall to be specific — in the Senate, to ensure that none of the privatization or benefit-cutting legislation makes it out of Congress and up to 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.

The forces aiming to destroy our treasured social insurance programs are more insidious. The stakes are higher. But we can protect Social Security and Medicare and keep them solvent for the future without cutting benefits for millions of Americans if we organize, mobilize and make our voices heard on Capitol Hill.