Special coverage in the Trump Era

From Public Citizen's Corporate Presidency site: "44 Trump administration officials have close ties to the Koch brothers and their network of political groups, particularly Vice President Mike Pence, White House Legislative Affairs Director Marc Short, EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt and White House budget director Mick Mulvaney."

Dark Money author Jane Mayer on The Dangers of President Pence, New Yorker, Oct. 23 issue on-line

Can Time Inc. Survive the Kochs? November 28, 2017 By
..."This year, among the Kochs’ aims is to spend a projected four hundred million dollars in contributions from themselves and a small group of allied conservative donors they have assembled, to insure Republican victories in the 2018 midterm elections. Ordinarily, political reporters for Time magazine would chronicle this blatant attempt by the Kochs and their allies to buy political influence in the coming election cycle. Will they feel as free to do so now?"...

"Democracy in Chains: The Deep History of the Radical Right’s Stealth Plan for America" see: our site, and George Monbiot's essay on this key book by historian Nancy MacLean.

Full interview with The New Yorker’s Jane Mayer March 29, 2017, Democracy Now! about her article, "The Reclusive Hedge-Fund Tycoon Behind the Trump Presidency: How Robert Mercer Exploited America’s Populist Insurgency."

Democracy Now! Special Broadcast from the Women's March on Washington

The Economics of Happiness -- shorter version

Local Futures offers a free 19-minute abridged version  of its award-winning documentary film The Economics of Happiness. It "brings us voices of hope of in a time of crisis." www.localfutures.org.

What's New?

May 13, 2019

#FreeBlackMamas Bails Black Mothers From Jail For Mother’s Day

A growing campaign to bring black mothers home from jail is putting the need to eliminate cash bail into criminal justice conversations.

By Victoria Law, Wagingnonviolence.org
Published May 12, 2019,
posted on popularresistance.org

"In 1870, abolitionist Julia Ward Howe issued her Mother’s Day proclamation: a call for mothers across the United States to end war. It was five years since the end of the Civil War and the passage of the 13th Amendment, which banned chattel slavery with one notable exception: involuntary servitude is allowed as punishment for a crime.

Nearly 150 years later, Howe’s dream of ending war has yet to become a reality. And the 13th Amendment has become more significant as, over the past 40 years, the number of people being sent to prison has skyrocketed. But accompanying these soaring numbers have been calls for abolition of another kind — to abolish prisons. It’s a call that’s been gaining traction and popularity over the past decade.

Among the numerous tactics taken by abolitionists is one focusing specifically on mothers, particularly mothers of color, who have been hard hit by both poverty and tough-on-crime policies. It also challenges the country’s bail system, in which people who cannot afford to pay bail must stay in jail for months — and sometimes years — as their cases slowly wind their way through the court system."...


"On any given day, 462,000 people (of all genders and races) are held in jail pretrial, meaning that they are currently awaiting their day in court. The majority are jailed simply because they cannot afford to post bail — or a money amount assigned by the judge ostensibly to ensure that a person returns to court....

In the United States, #FreeBlackMamas is entering its third year. The idea started with Mary Hooks, the executive director of Southerners for New Ground, or SONG, an LGBTQ organization. Hooks proposed a mass bailout of black mothers in time to spend Mother’s Day with their families instead of languishing in jail cells. The call spread across the country and over a dozen organizations — from reproductive justice groups to organizations focused on mass incarceration and criminalization — took up the call. They raised awareness about bail, as well as funds needed to pay it. Then they sat in courtrooms, clerks’ offices and jail waiting rooms — sometimes for hours on end — in order to post the bail that would allow mothers to be home with their families in time for Mother’s Day."...

"The number of women in jails across the United States has increased 14 times between 1970 and 2014. Of those women, 44 percent are black (though black women make up only 8 percent of the country’s population). Eighty percent of women (of all races) are also mothers.

In 2017, #FreeBlackMamas organizers raised over $1 million in two months, enough to post bail for 106 mothers nationwide."...read full article