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Net Briefs 06-09
Will Labor Fight?
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Net Briefs - June 2009
Earlier, when a report came out urging the corporation to stop bottling in water-parched areas in India, Coke's India Division told a reporter the answer was "not to stop bottling." The pumps kept running and this same pattern was born out even in Georgia, where city rationing during drought conditions didn't preclude Coke from continuing to churn out its products, including bottled tap water, at full-tilt. Each year, billions of pounds of plastic waste from Coke products wind up in landfills, incinerators, or as roadside litter—even as Coke spends millions on PR to push its "green" image (www.ThinkOutsideTheBottle.org).
All of which is to say that work to end the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan is really only just beginning anew.
During his campaign, at several junctures, President Obama had committed to do significantly more on global AIDS, TB, and malaria and promised to fully fund PEPFAR (President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief), including a written pledge to support $50 billion over five years for global AIDS alone. "...[T]his budget's drastic cuts to funding for AIDS, TB and malaria shows that his promises were just rhetoric," said Kaytee Riek, Director of Organizing for Health GAP.
Race in America
"However, while impressive, Black progress has always been fragile and insufficient, particularly as it relates to the working class and the poor. [In the last decades] Republican conservatives seized the initiative to launch a major legislative and legal assault calculated to nullify or reverse these gains, arguing that Black progress was achieved by infringing on the rights of Whites.... And, with more conservatives on the Supreme Court and in the federal judiciary, race-based remedies, including virtually every form of affirmative action, have increasingly been ruled unconstitutional.
"Though structural racism remains the most plausible explanation for the kinds of disparities consistently documented by the National Urban League's State of Black America Report, conservatives have been successful in persuading a majority of Americans that whatever problems exist in Black America are due to cultural defects and a lack of 'personal responsibility'.... At Obama's prime-time news conference to mark his first 100 days in office, a BET [Black Entertainment Television] reporter asked him whether targeted programs might be needed to address situations like the massive unemployment of Black and Latino men in New York City. The president refused to take the opportunity to embrace race-based remedies as a means of dealing with depression level employment in the Black community, indicating instead that the overall success of his Stimulus Program will be the rising tide that lifts all boats."
Human rights groups denounce its use for the severe burns it causes, though it is not banned by any treaty to which the United States is a signatory. The U.S. military used white phosphorus in the battle of Fallujah in Iraq in November 2004. Israel's military used it in January against Hamas targets in Gaza.
Using white phosphorus to illuminate a target or create smoke is considered legitimate under international law, but rights groups say its use over populated areas can indiscriminately burn civilians and constitutes a war crime. Allegations that white phosphorus or another chemical may have been used threatens to deepen the controversy over what Afghan officials say could be the worst case of civilian deaths since the 2001 U.S. invasion.
In Kabul, hundreds of people have marched near Kabul University to protest the U.S. military's role in the deaths. The incident in Farah drew condemnation of Karzai, who called for an end to airstrikes. However, President Barack Obama's national security adviser said the United States would not end airstrikes. Retired Gen. James Jones refused to rule out any action because "we can't fight with one hand tied behind our back."
The Police Department confirmed that it had been notified, but said it had been barred from alerting the public: "The flight of a VC-25 aircraft and F-16 fighters this morning was authorized by the FAA for the vicinity of the Statue of Liberty with directives to local authorities not to disclose information about it."
Robert Gibbs, the White House press secretary, said Monday afternoon that he was unaware of the flyover. Also unaware were hundreds of office workers flooded out of buildings. Johnny Villafane, 42, of the Upper West Side, said, "The plane did a 360. There was a vibration. The glass in the skyscrapers was shivering." He added, "It sounded like the building were cracking, everything started shaking. I thought the plane was coming down."
Z Magazine Archive
CUBAN 5 - From May 30 to June 5, supporters of the Cuban 5 will gather in Washington DC to raise awareness about the case and to demand a humanitarian solution that will allow the return of these men to their homeland.
Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com.
BIKES - Bikes Not Bombs is holding its 24th annual Bike- A-Thon and Green Roots Festival in Boston, MA on June 3, with several bike rides, music, exhibitors, and more.
Contact: Bikes Not Bombs, 284 Amory St., Jamaica Plain, MA 02130; 617-522-0222; mailbikesnotbombs.org; www.bikesnotbombs.org.
LEFT FORUM - The 2013 Left Forum will be held June 7-9, at Pace University in NYC.
Contact: 365 Fifth Avenue, CUNY Graduate Center, Sociology Dept., New York, NY 10016; http://www.leftforum.org/.
VEGAN FEST - Mad City Vegan Fest will be held in Madison, WI, June 8. The annual event features food, speakers, and exhibitors.
Contact: 122 State Street, Suite 405 B, Madison, WI 53701; firstname.lastname@example.org; http://veganfest.org/.
ADC CONFERENCE - The American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC) holds its annual conference June 13-16 in Washington, DC, with panel discussions and workshops.
Contact: 1990 M Street, Suite 610, Washington, DC, 20036; 202-244-2990; convention @adc. org http://convention.adc.org/.
CUBA/SOCIALISM - A Cuban-North American Dialog on Socialist Renewal and Global Capitalist Crisis will be held in Havana, Cuba, June 16-30. There will be a 5-day Seminar at the University of Havana, plus visits to a co-op and educational and medical institutions.
Contact: email@example.com; http://www.globaljustice center.org/.
NETROOTS - The 8th Annual Netroots Nation conference will take place June 20-23 in San Jose, CA. The event features panels, trainings, networking, screenings, and keynotes.
Contact: 164 Robles Way, #276, Vallejo, CA 94591; firstname.lastname@example.org; http://www.netrootsnation.org/.
MEDIA - The 15th annual Allied Media Conference will be held June 20-23, in Detroit.
Contact: 4126 Third Street, Detroit, MI 48201; http://alliedmedia.org/.
GRASSROOTS - The United We Stand Festival will be hosted by Free & Equal, June 22 in Little Rock, Arkansas. The festival aims to reform the electoral process in the U.S.
LITERACY - The National Association for Media Literacy Education (NAMLE) will hold its conference July 12-13 in Los Angeles.
Contact: 10 Laurel Hill Drive, Cherry Hill, NJ 08003; http://namle.net/conference/.
IWW - The North American Work People’s College will take place July 12-16 at Mesaba Co-op Park in northern Minnesota. The event will bring together Wobblies from across the continent to learn skills and build one big union.
PEACESTOCK - On July 13, the 11th Annual Peacestock will take place at Windbeam Farm in Hager City, WI. The event is a mixture of music, speakers, and community for peace. Sponsored by Veterans for Peace.
Contact: Bill Habedank, 1913 Grandview Ave., Red Wing, MN 55066; 651-388-7733; email@example.com; http://www. peacestockvfp.org.
LA RAZA - The annual National Council of La Raza (NCLR) Conference is scheduled for July 18-19 in New Orleans, with workshops, presentations, and panel discussions.
Contact: NCLR Headquarters Office, Raul Yzaguirre Building, 1126 16th Street, NW, Washington, DC 20036; 202-785-1670; www.nclr.org.
ACTIVIST CAMP - Youth Empowered Action (YEA) Camp will have sessions in July and August in Ben Lomond, CA; Portland, OR; Charlton, MA. YEA Camp is designed for activists 12-17 years old who want to make a difference.
Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org; http://yeacamp.org/.