Saturday, June 30, 2012

Mass. won't ban electric shocks

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: "Greg Miller via" <>
Date: Jun 30, 2012 9:53 AM
Subject: Mass. won't ban electric shocks
To: <>

Daniel -

This is hard for me to say, but on Wednesday, the leadership of the Massachusetts House of Representatives chose not to support a bill that would ban the use of electric shocks on disabled people in the state. Massachusetts is the only state in the country where this still takes place. 

I started my petition after I saw this abuse firsthand as a teacher's aide at the Judge Rotenberg Center. I had no idea that you and more than 250,000 others would join me, and together demand Massachusetts lawmakers stop the abuse of my former students -- thank you.

Even though this bill didn't pass, I'm incredibly proud of the attention we've brought to the abuse taking place at the JRC. Here are some of the things that we've accomplished:

  • The United Nations has announced that they are now investigating the JRC's use of electric shocks to see if they meet the international guidelines for torture.
  • Anderson Cooper exposed that the JRC has been misleading the public about having FDA approval for its electric shock machines, and the campaign has been covered by media from CNN to Fox News.
  • More than 30 human rights and disability organizations came out in support of our efforts. 

It was always going to be a hard fight -- the JRC spent millions of dollars on lawyers, lobbyists and public relations professionals to influence these lawmakers. But thanks to your support, the world knows what goes on in Canton, Massachusetts, and the JRC won't be able to escape scrutiny like before. 

For the moment, we haven't won this campaign -- but the petition will still be updated with information about the effort to protect the disabled in Massachusetts. And I hope you will keep talking about this issue with your friends, families and legislators.

Again, thank you for supporting my campaign,

Gregory Miller

Former JRC Employee

P.S. New York is now considering a bill that would ban state tax dollars from being used at the JRC if they continue shocking students, and disability advocates are asking for help to make sure it passes.

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The next step: Medicare for All

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: "Adam Green and Stephanie Taylor," <>
Date: Jun 29, 2012 3:08 PM
Subject: The next step: Medicare for All
To: "Daniel Stafford" <>


Yesterday's Supreme Court ruling on health care proved it's possible for the good guys to win. Even a right-wing Court agreed that the federal government has wide authority to improve people's lives -- handing a major defeat to the Tea Party.

It was also a big step forward for health care reform. Millions of people with pre-existing conditions can now get health insurance. Many lives will be saved.

It's important to celebrate victories. It's also important to be honest when there's more work to be done.

The truth is that the "mandate" to buy private health insurance is an idea conceived by the right-wing Heritage Foundation. It puts millions of people at the mercy of corporations that profit by denying people care. 

Few Democratic politicians were willing to acknowledge that yesterday, but Senator Bernie Sanders and a handful of progressive congressional candidates did.

They celebrated our victory, but also made clear that progressives are fighting for a better (and more popular) health care solution: Medicare For All.

Can you read their statements below and then reward their boldness by donating $3 or more to their campaigns? Click here to donate.

If we want to pass bold progressive change in the future, we won't do it by being silent. We need leaders who are willing to make the case to the public -- and then win. 

Please reward the candidates who did us proud yesterday -- donate $3 here.

Tomorrow is a big fundraising deadline, so they'll especially appreciate your donation now. Thanks for being a bold progressive.

-- Adam Green, Stephanie Taylor, Forrest Brown, Amanda Johnson, James Ploeser, and the PCCC Team


Today is a good day for millions of Americans who have pre-existing conditions who can no longer be rejected by insurance companies. It is a good day for families with children under 26...  

In my view, while the Affordable Care Act is an important step in the right direction and I am glad that the Supreme Court upheld it, we ultimately need to do better.  If we are serious about providing high-quality, affordable healthcare as a right, not a privilege, the real solution to America's health care crisis is a Medicare-for-all, single-payer system...

I am proud that Vermont is making steady progress toward implementing a single-payer system. I hope our state will be a model to show the rest of the nation.

Donate $3 to reward Bernie Sanders and other progressives here.


I am pleased that the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the Affordable Care Act...While I still support stronger healthcare plans, like 'Medicare for All', President Obama's health care reform was a bold move in the right direction toward providing affordable healthcare for all Americans.

It is a shame that Paul Ryan did not, and continues not to support providing health care for people in his district. From voting against the Affordable Care Act to working to end Medicare as we know it, Paul Ryan would gladly put American families at risk simply to ensure profits for his campaign contributors in the insurance and pharmaceutical industries.

Donate $3 to reward Rob Zerban, Bernie Sanders, and other progressives here.


The U.S. Supreme Court's ruling this morning upholding The Affordable Care Act ensures that important gains will be preserved.

[But] I believe it was a mistake to design a plan that forces Americans to buy coverage from high-profit insurance companies. The plan gave too much control, and too much of our money, to the insurance and pharmaceutical industries...

There is a better, more affordable option: Medicare for All. As an ER physician and family practice doctor, I've seen how well Medicare works...Medicare is more cost-efficient than private insurance and doesn't profit by denying care.

This election offers voters a clear choice. I support expanding Medicare. My Republican opponent Rodney Davis supports Paul Ryan's plan to end Medicare.

Donate $3 to reward David Gill, Bernie Sanders, and other progressives here.


Now that we are sure the Affordable Care Act is constitutional, it's time to move on and get to work containing healthcare costs.

If elected to Congress, I promise to fight for Medicare for All. Medicare has by far the lowest overhead of any insurance out there, and...Medicare is overwhelmingly popular. A July 2011 Pew Research poll found that 88% of Americans support Medicare -- including 85% of Republicans, 85% of Independents, and 93% of Democrats.

This election gives voters a clear choice. I support Medicare for All while my Republican opponent Congressman Chip Cravaack supports Paul Ryan's plan to end Medicare.

Donate $3 to reward Tarryl Clark, Bernie Sanders, and other progressives here.


I am happy that the students and other young people able to stay on their parent's health care plan can remain on those plans...and perhaps most importantly, I am delighted that insurance companies can no longer deny care based on pre-existing conditions, or drop coverage because of expensive illnesses...

The health care reform law, and this ruling, are ultimately just a step on the path to making quality, affordable health care available to every American family. That's why I will fight to guarantee implementation of the Affordable Care Act, and to protect, strengthen, and expand Medicare by opening it up to all American families.

Republicans are pushing the Ryan plan to destroy Medicare, but we have a unique opportunity as a country to build on the success of the Affordable Care Act by protecting and strengthening Medicare and opening up access for every family...

Donate $3 to reward Chris Donovan, Bernie Sanders, and other progressives here.


Want to support our work? We're entirely funded by our members—no corporate contributions, no big checks from CEOs. And our tiny staff ensures that small contributions go a long way. Chip in $3 here.

Paid for by the Progressive Change Campaign Committee PAC ( and not authorized by any candidate or candidate's committee. Contributions to the PCCC are not deductible as charitable contributions for federal income tax purposes.

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This American Life - Story at noon today about outsourcing

Their story at noon today on WBEZ will be about outsourcing.


Hometown News Belongs At Home!

This blows my mind. I would love to see the local folk put out of work band together and start their own independent news corporation - one that has in its charter bylaws that ban huge wage spreads between entry-level and CEO/Executive pay, outsourcing/offshoring, and all the things these big corporations do that suck. Then get loud about the evil crap they don't do, and be online and print.

Do stories on the companies that advertise with you - the small local businesses like you.

Bypass this corporate evil they call an economy with a fair, sustainable, progressive and separate economy.

I think we should have a lityle brainstorming session...

All the best, if you work and vote for it,


Don't Outsource Local News

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: "Libby Reinish," <>
Date: Jun 30, 2012 7:51 AM
Subject: Don't Outsource Local News
To: "Daniel A. Stafford" <>

Dear Daniel,

Is there any job that can't be outsourced? 

Millions of American workers have been put out of work as employers move operations overseas. It's true in manufacturing, data processing and customer service.  

Now it's true for local news. That's right, media giants including Sam Zell's Tribune Company have begun to send local reporting jobs overseas. To the Philippines. 

According to a major story by This American Life, dozens of papers around the country have outsourced local news production to Journatic, a company that hires underpaid workers in the Phillippines to create local news for communities in the United States.1 

Tell Tribune Chairman Sam Zell: Local News = Local Journalists

Journatic's employees attach fake bylines to their stories to obscure its outsourcing scheme. Zell's Tribune Company has bought into this deception, hoping people won't notice the journalistic sleight of hand. A whistleblower at Journatic who figured it out had this to say:

"It's sort of a tattered product that's being written overseas, halfheartedly edited, and just kind of slopped on the page."

Most readers of the Tribune Company's many print and broadcast news outlets would be outraged to know that local reporting was produced in news sweatshops abroad, where writers make 35 - 40 cents per story.

Local news organizations must be accountable to the communities in which they operate. That means hiring reporters who work among us and walk the same streets, who have direct ties to the people and issues that affect our lives.   

That's not what Zell thinks. He's using Journatic's assembly line; writers in the Philippines, editors in far-flung corners of the US, and even paragraphs that are auto-generated by computers, to repackage local press releases and public information as real reporting. It's not.

Demand Local News from Local Reporters. Tell Sam Zell to Stop the News Deception

Zell, who has a notorious disregard for journalism,2 hopes that you won't notice — that he can save money by fooling Americans and faking local news.  His Tribune Company stretches from New York to Los Angeles, from Chicago to New Orleans, and includes dozens of daily newspapers and local TV stations.

Since he took the helm at the Tribune Company, Zell has slashed more than 200 newsroom jobs. Now, with this Journatic deal, it's clear that Zell's assault on journalism isn't over.

Sign our letter to Zell so that the Tribune Company chairman and media executives across the country know that you can't fake local news. With your help we can return local reporters to local beats.   


Libby, Tim, Misty and the rest of the Free Press team

P.S. Like our work? The Free Press Action Fund is powered by donations from people like you. We don't take a single cent from business, government or political parties. Please keep us going strong with a gift of $10 — or more — today. Thank you!

1. 'Switcheroo', This American Life:

2. Sam Zell "F&@k You" to his journalist:

 3. Journatic has a well-established history of attacking local news. Read more:


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Friday, June 29, 2012

Freeport workers call on Romney to stop outsourcing their jobs

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: "Bill Bianchi" <>
Date: Jun 29, 2012 3:26 PM
Subject: Freeport workers call on Romney to stop outsourcing their jobs
To: <>

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Romney's Bain Capital to outsource 170 Freeport IL Jobs to China 
Employees asked to train Chinese replacements!

Dear Daniel,                                                          Please distribute widely to your networks.

By Ashlee Rezin Friday June 29th, 2012, Progress Illinois

In response to more than 170 impending layoffs at Sensata Technologies, a Bain Capital-owned plant slated to be outsourced, a collection of community, religious, and labor leaders have promised to ban together and fight back to save the Freeport jobs.  

"When I found out that my job was going to be shipped overseas to China ... at first I was angry, now just five or six months away from unemployment, I'm scared," said Cheryl Randecker, a Sensata employee who has worked at the plant for 33 years. "As a single mother, I don't just worry about myself, I actually worry about my daughter.

In early 2011, Sensata, a maker of sensors and controls that are used in aircraft, automobiles, and electric motors, announced it would be relocating the jobs in Freeport to China and closing the local plant. Normal operations have continued following the announcement, but hundreds of jobs are being phased out gradually and final layoffs are set to occur just before the holidays in December.

On a conference call Thursday, Randecker was joined by more than 10 community leaders and activists in a pledge to fight the impending layoffs.

"When I found out that I was losing my job I realized I couldn't support my daughter's education," said Randecker on the conference call. "After working hard for so many years and giving so much to my job, I should be able to give my daughter a good education ... I don't even know how I'm going to make my house payments and pay my bills."

Randecker and her fellow employees are currently training their Chinese replacements, who have been flown to Illinois by the company, a process she says is "challenging."

"We know now from a couple decades of experience how fully destructive outsourcing is, it's creating a race to the bottom, it's driving out wages and working conditions for workers all over this country, it's leaving communities absolutely devastated and that's what's going to happen here if this proceeds," said Carl Rosen, president of District 11 of the United Electrical, Radio and Machine Workers of America, on the conference all. "We frankly don't know what Bain Capital is thinking."

To Read More, Click Here

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We're gaining momentum! (TPP negotiations)

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: "Emma Pullman," <>
Date: Jun 29, 2012 4:23 PM
Subject: We're gaining momentum!
To: "Daniel A. Stafford" <>


We just got an email from one of our members telling us, "I must say that your email was about the scariest thing I ever read, and I'm 74 and enjoy science fiction movies."

Like her, you're one of nearly 75,000 people who have sent a message calling on world leaders and trade representatives to come clean about the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP).

In fact, we've sent so many messages to world leaders negotiating this top-secret agreement, that we've literally filled their inboxes to capacity letting them know we won't be left in the dark about this agreement. Due the huge volume of emails we sent, some of your messages may have bounced, and we apologize if there was any confusion, but this means that we're making a huge impact.

Our partners at Public Citizen, who helped kick-start it all by leaking proposed chapters of the agreement, are going to deliver your petitions in San Diego next week.

The biggest problem with this treaty is that, due to the extreme secrecy surrounding it, only a few people have heard of it. But that is starting to change. 

The Nation just released a piece on it -- "NAFTA on Steroids" -- that you should totally read and tell all your friends about. 

We can and are helping push the TPP further into the public eye by sharing the news and starting the opposition now, before the next round of talks begin. We hope that this growing awareness is just the tip of the iceberg. 


--Emma, Kaytee, and the Rest of Us

P.S. In case The Nation article wasn't enough for you,  we wanted to leave you with a few more to read over the weekend: 

House Democrats want more open Pacific trade Talks. The Seattle Times, June 27, 2012 
What's Behind Canada's Entry into the Trans-Pacific Parternship Talks? Toronto Star, June 24, 2012.

SumOfUs is a world-wide movement of people like you, working together to hold corporations accountable for their actions and forge a new, sustainable path for our global economy. You can follow us on Twitter, and like us on Facebook.

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Thursday, June 28, 2012

What the Supreme Court's ruling means for your health care

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: "The White House" <>
Date: Jun 28, 2012 4:07 PM
Subject: What the Supreme Court's ruling means for your health care
To: <>

The White House Thursday, June 28, 2012

What the Supreme Court's ruling means for your health care

Today, the Supreme Court issued a historic ruling: They upheld the Affordable Care Act and ensured that millions of American families will have access to health care and protection from the worst abuses of the insurance industry.

Lots of people have questions about the Affordable Care Act, the Supreme Court's decision, and their health care coverage. We've pulled together the most useful information -- including President Obama's remarks after the announcement -- at

Watch the video and get the facts here.

Because the law has an impact on so many Americans, it's important to understand its basic parts. We've also put together a list of facts about the Affordable Care Act. Will you give it a read, and then pass it on?

Facts About Health Care Reform

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Say you're with me

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: "Barack Obama" <>
Date: Jun 28, 2012 6:22 PM
Subject: Say you're with me
To: "Daniel Stafford" <>

Daniel --

This is a good day for millions of Americans who can continue to benefit from the protections and economic security provided by the Affordable Care Act.

While the Supreme Court's decision should put to rest the debate over health care, Mitt Romney and the Republicans in Congress just can't take yes for an answer.

My opponent said a short while ago that the first thing he would try to do as president is repeal the health care law. We can't allow that to happen. So we have to win this election.

Say you're with me on the Affordable Care Act:

Thank you for all that you do.


Paid for by Obama for America

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---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: "Steve Israel" <>
Date: Jun 28, 2012 10:31 AM
Subject: BREAKING: Upheld
To: "Daniel Stafford" <>


BREAKING NEWS: The Supreme Court just voted to uphold President Obama's Health Care law.

Republicans threw everything they had at us, and they lost. With you standing with us, we can carry this momentum into November and win a Democratic majority to keep making progress.

Please donate $3 or whatever you can right now:

Thank you,


Rep. Steve Israel
DCCC Chairman


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Pelosi Stands By the 1 Percent

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: "RootsAction Team" <>
Date: Jun 28, 2012 8:02 AM
Subject: Pelosi Stands By the 1 Percent
To: <>

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Tell Nancy Pelosi we won't allow more politics of, by, & for the 1%.

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Almost 10,000 of us have sent this message to Nancy Pelosi.  RootsAction has spoken with her office to ask the Democratic Leader to stop supporting tax breaks for the rich as she threatens Social Security. She has refused.  Let her hear from you.  And send this to friends.

Dear Catherine,

Weeks ago, House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi openly expressed her support for a plan similar to that produced by the Simpson-Bowles deficit commission -- a plan that would ultimately cut Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid benefits while protecting the wealthy from taxes.

It's gotten worse.

Pelosi now says she also favors keeping the Bush-Obama tax cuts in place for those with incomes up to $1 million. (President Obama has said he supports keeping the tax cuts only for those below $250,000.)  The Pelosi proposal would lose billions in revenue and would likely mean additional massive cuts to human needs.

Tell Rep. Pelosi these positions are unacceptable.

Big budgetary decisions are likely to be pushed off until the lame-duck session after November's election, or the following Congress. But it's now -- as we move into election season -- that Democratic leaders need to hear that millions of voters oppose this appeasing of the 1% and the GOP.

The federal budget is in a hole because of bloated military spending, wars, tax cuts for the rich, corporate welfare, Wall Street speculation and the consequent economic downturn.  None of these problems will be fixed by savaging our retirement and healthcare safety net or other important programs.

Tell Congresswoman Pelosi that we will never allow the stripping of our safety net to protect the wealthy from taxes.

Please forward this email widely to like-minded friends.

The RootsAction team

P.S. Our small staff is supported by contributions from people like you; your donations are greatly appreciated.

P.P.S. RootsAction is an independent online force endorsed by Jim Hightower, Barbara Ehrenreich, Cornel West, Daniel Ellsberg, Glenn Greenwald, Naomi Klein, Bill Fletcher Jr., Laura Flanders, former U.S. Senator James Abourezk, Coleen Rowley, and many others.

Citizens for Tax Justice: Pelosi's "Middle Class" Tax Plan Benefits Millionaires
Huffington Post: Pelosi Says She'd Back Simpson-Bowles Plan
Gaius Publius: Nancy Pelosi Pre-Emptively Caves on Bush–Obama Tax Cuts

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