From: "Kelly Ward" <email@example.com>
Date: Aug 30, 2012 8:54 PM
Subject: BREAKING: New poll
To: "Daniel Stafford" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
List of all the media articles about the deceptions in Ryan's speech.
Now, THAT's what I call a true factrobat - I've never seen anyone dance around the facts so hard in order to pain an utterly-dishonest image.
|Last week, the USA Pro Challenge bike race passed within 20 feet of our Colorado headquarters. A few days later, our community is still buzzing from the historic event, and pro bike racing remains on our minds. |
While safe roads matter to everyone on a bike, professional cyclists spend more time on them than almost anyone. These talented, world-class athletes may seem super-human at times, but they are human like any of us—vulnerable on the open road.
In our new video, Vulnerable on the Open Road, five professional U.S. cyclists reflect on their experiences with bicycle safety. The riders share their visions for better bicycling conditions and lessons for safer motorist-bicyclist interactions.
Even though these riders are the top 1% of bicyclists, their advice—slow down, be aware, don't blow through red lights, build more infrastructure, get more people riding—applies to anyone who likes to enjoy the simple pleasure of a bike ride.
Take a moment to listen to their experiences and, next time you ride (or drive), carry their advice out on the road with you.
The PeopleForBikes.org crew
The art of banding together. Hmmm. Sounds familiar, somehow...
It has been nine months since the launch of SumOfUs.org, and in that short amount of time we have grown from an idea to a full-fledged movement. As we look back over the past two months and the milestones we have achieved, I thought it would be fun to share some numbers from our organization to show you all that we have accomplished, both statistically and in some of our most recent campaigns.
Stand with Julia in her fight against TransCanada
Background: The Keystone XL Pipeline, which would transport dirty tar sands oil to the US, has been enormously controversial and a potential environmental disaster. Although President Obama ordered a review of the pipeline in January, the project is marching onwards. One of the few people to stand in TransCanada's way is Julia Trigg, a Texas farmer fighting to prevent Keystone's company, TransCanada, from seizing her land for its pan-American pipeline.
What we want: We asked the SumOfUs.org community to help contribute to Julia's legal efforts, in order to ensure that she could have top-notch legal representation as she goes up against the best lawyers oil money can buy.
Current status: The result was amazing! Over 2,000 people donated what they could afford to Julia, and we raised just short of $50,000 to support Julia's legal fund -- enough for her to hire another lawyer to fight TransCanada's army of corporate lawyers. When we told her, she literally jumped for joy. In her long struggle with TransCanada, this money will allow her to keep up the fight as her case works its way through the Texas legal system.
Last Wednesday, Julia suffered a first-round setback when the local county judge announced his ruling against Julia in a fifteen-word email, which he callously sent from his iPhone. Although Julia is disappointed, she has always had plans to appeal all the way to the Texas Supreme Court if she needed to, which has previously ruled in favor of landowners like her in similar cases. Thanks to the generosity of SumOfUs.org members, Julia is now secure that she can take her fight to the next round, in the state district court. Julia has been extremely grateful for the help SumOfUs.org members, whose donations have been a game changer. When she got our "Good luck" card from members, Julia called us up weeping in gratitude. To all that donated or helped raise awareness of Julia's campaign, thank you for your support!
These workers aren't just fighting for their jobs. They want to buy the factory.
(US and UK-only campaign)
Background: Serious Energy, owned in part by Mesirow Financial, was planning to shut down a Chicago-area energy efficient-window and door factory, lay off all the workers, and sell the parts off for scrap to vulture companies, kicking the factory workers out to the job market.
Partners: The Working World
What we want: Members of SumOfUs.org called on Serious Energy and Mesirow Financial to come back to the bargaining table and work with the workers' cooperative to reach a fair deal to save the factory.
Current status: We won an important step by getting Serious Energy back to the bargaining table to sit down and talk in good faith. Word from our allies is that the talks have been progressing well, and we hope to have exciting news to report back about New Era Windows when we update you again in October. In the words of our allies, "we have made great progress... and the petition was instrumental to making it happen."
Press coverage: The Nation
Johnson & Johnson and ALEC and Trayvon
Background: The American Legislative Exchange Council gained notoriety earlier this year when it was connected to Florida's "Stand Your Ground" law, which George Zimmerman had infamously used as his defense for the killing of unarmed teenager Trayvon Martin. As the public began to learn more about ALEC's work in partnering corporate lobbyists with state legislatures to craft harmful legislation, a call went out for corporations to stop associating with the organization.
What we want: SumOfUs.org members called upon Johnson & Johnson, along with other corporations, to leave ALEC over its support for harmful legislation.
Current status: Johnson & Johnson announced it was leaving ALEC in June. Since then, the bleeding has continued, with General Electric, General Motors, Sprint, Walgreens, Hewlett-Packard, CVS, Best Buy, John Deere & Co. and MillerCoors LLC all announcing that they, too, have quit the corporate "stealth lobbying" group, bringing the total of organizations that have withdrawn to 38. ALEC has become toxic to many top brands, and as more and more companies pull out, ALEC's funding has been cut short and its activities restricted. In recent months it disbanded its task force responsible for drafting Florida's "Stand Your Ground" law as well as drafting the infamous voter-ID laws which will restrict voting rights in a number of states this fall. If you are unsure about your own state's voting laws, go here to find out if your state requires an ID, and make sure you and your friends will be eligible to vote in 2012.
Read More: Original petition
Berenstain Bears: Dump the anti-gay Chick-fil-A
Background: Chick-fil-A came under a media firestorm in July, after its CEO went on the record to say he was "guilty as charged" as a funder of discriminatory laws against the LGBT community. In light of his comments, and the ensuing stories about Chick-fil-A's significiant donations to anti-gay organizations, the Jim Henson Company ended its partnership with Chick-fil-A's Kids' Meals.
Partner: CREDO, Faithful America
What we want: The SumOfUs.org community asked the Berenstain Bears, Chick-fil-A's next toy sponsor, to end its partnership with Chick-fil-A as well.
Current status: The Berenstain Bears responded to the controversy by putting up a public notice on its website distancing itself both from Chick-fil-A and from its publisher, HarperCollins. We delivered over eighty thousand signatures to HarperCollins headquarters. The publisher decided to push forward with the toy deal, citing support of corporate "free speech". But Chick-fil-A and its corporate friends have felt our heat. The fast food company's next two planned toy tie-ins are unbranded and unadvertised.
Enbridge: Stop misleading the public
Background: Canadian oil company Enbridge is building a massive, 700-mile-long pipeline through gorgeous wilderness, terminating at a bay filled with over a dozen islands. In order to sell this dangerous plan to the public, Enbridge -- which has a long history of oil spills -- erased almost all of the islands from its public-facing map and video, making the route appear safer than it actually is.
What we wanted: SumOfUs.org called on Enbridge to pull its ads in order to stop misleading the public.
Update: Enbridge quickly responded by editing its video and adding a disclaimer, but continues to use the misleading piece to sell its idea. SumOfUs.org and LeadNow are planning to deliver over 40,000 signatures to Enbridge's head office in Vancouver, Toronto, and Calgary, calling for the company to pull the ad for good.
Read more: The original petition
IKEA: Stop destroying Russia's remaining ancient forests
Background: IKEA's motto may be "We love trees" but privately IKEA sources much of its wood from Europe's last-remaining old-growth forest, cutting down trees that environmentalists have found to be hundreds of years old, in violation of IKEA's own policies.
What we want: We are asking for IKEA to stop sourcing its wood from Russia's old-growth Karelia forests.
Current status: Over 100,000 of you signed our petition to IKEA, and the company responded by shooting us a letter in which it claimed that we were mistaken about the extent of its logging operation, and its use of ancient trees. We checked in with Protect the Forests Sweden, an environmental charity which has actively investigated IKEA's logging sites, who provided clear proof that IKEA was chopping down old-growth trees. We communicated this confirmation to IKEA, and will continue to monitor IKEA for another opportunity to publicly pressure the company of its environmentally-unsound practices.
Hershey's Chocolate: Let HIV+ boys attend your school
Background: A boy was denied admission to the Milton Hershey School, a private boarding school for underprivileged kids, simply because he was HIV+. That school is run solely with funding from the Hershey Corporation. Despite pressure from community groups and a lawsuit, the Milton Hershey School dug in and continued to refuse admission to the boy, in direct violation of the law.
What we want: We called for Hershey Corporation to use its weight as a Board member of the school to push the school to admit the boy.
Current status: Victory, the boy was offered admission! Organizers of a Hershey's boycott tell us our 20,000 signatures helped build media attention on the issue and push the school to change their course.
Read More: Original petition
Hyatt: Re-hire Elvia Bahena!
Background: For years, Hyatt has been one of the worst employers in the hotel industry, with a significantly higher rate of injury on the job, and few protections for workers. One of the more egregious violations of workers' rights occurred in Indiana, when subcontract worker Elvia Bahena spoke out against Hyatt's practice of discriminating against contact workers, thus depressing their wages and ensuring they had no opportunities for advancement. After Elvia spoke out, Hyatt punished her by refusing to hire her further.
Partner: UNITE HERE
What we want: We called upon the manager of the local Hyatt, Brian Comes, to re-hire Elvia.
Current status: Over 60,000 SumOfUs.org members wrote in to Brian, but Hyatt has refused to let Elvia back on her job, and continues both its abusive practices and a sophisticated, long-running PR campaign to discredit anyone who speaks out. We will continue to monitor Hyatt and its abuses going forward.
Read More: Original petition
Chipotle: Sign the Fair Food Agreement
Background: The Coalition of Immokalee Workers has been fighting for over a decade to pressure large corporations to sign the Fair Food Agreement, ensuring that tomato-pickers are treated humanely and paid a fair wage. Chipotle has been the latest company to hold out on signing. Chipotle does carry out some of the provisions of the FFA, but by not signing, Chipotle creates a dangerous environment that undermines entire Fair Food Program..
Partner: The Coalition of Immokalee Workers
What we want: SumOfUs.org members called for Chipotle to finally sign the agreement with workers.
Current status: We worked with the Coalition of Immokalee Workers for a fantastic day of action, with hundreds of phone calls to Chipotle's headquarters, nearly two dozen rallies across the country and tons of SumOfUs.org members visiting stores to speak with their local Chipotle manager. In advance of the week of action, Chipotle sent around a briefing memo to managers to make sure they could echo its inaccurate talking points to concerned customers. However, Chipotle has continued to claim that its own, limited reforms are good enough. We will continue to bring pressure to Chipotle, and press the company until it lives up to its claims of truly serving up "food with integrity."
Apple: Make your products ethically
Background: In January 2012, the New York Times reported that workers at iPhone factories in China faced harsh working conditions, illegal overtime requirements, and were paid a pittance. Since then, Apple has hired the Fair Labor Association, which confirmed what we already knew -- things are really bad for workers at factories in Apple's Chinese supply chain. Over the summer, two independent research groups released reports showing that instead of improving working conditions like Apple promised, many workers are now being forced to work unpaid overtime, and are making even less -- a direct contradiction with what Apple committed to do.
Partner: Students & Scholars Against Corporate Misbehaviour
What we want: The SumOfUs.org community wants Apple to treat its workers ethically, ensuring good wages, legal overtime hours, humane working conditions and the freedom of association. As an industry leader and one of the most profitable companies in the world, Apple should also be a leader in the way it treats the men and women who make its products.
Current status: After getting Apple to acknowledge its problems and pledge to fix them, we moved to the next step of the campaign: Getting Apple to make good on its word. To that end, we launched a website to track Apple's progress towards its commitment to make its products ethically. Check EthicaliPhone.org to see Apple's progress towards keeping its promise, as well as facts on Apple's treatment of workers. Apple's manufacturing partner, Foxconn, is still systematically violating overtime laws. The Fair Labor Association has reported modest reforms, but much more reform still needs to be accomplished before Apple can have any claim to workers being treated ethically.
Beyond all of this, we've been waging a number of shorter-term campaigns you may have seen that aren't included here in this big round-up. If you have specific questions about what is happening with any campaigns, let us know through our contact form.
As you can tell, we've been busy! But we wouldn't have it any other way. We are excited to build a movement together, and we're honored that you're a part of it.
We have some incredible campaigns in the works that we're looking forward to sharing with you. As we are still a tiny organization, with just six full-time staff members, we make sure that every dollar counts. If you want to help support our movement, please consider becoming a donor. We don't take any money from corporations or governments, which allows us to be truly independent and able to run campaigns like the ones above. But that also means we depend on our members to keep us going. Any donation -- even $5 -- that you can make not only improves our ability to campaign for corporate accountability, but also energizes us, knowing that you are invested in what the SumOfUs can do. To make your money go even further, make a recurring monthly donation.
Thanks for reading, and for continuing to support our growing movement for corporate accountability.
Photo courtesy of Credo Mobile.
Quoting Grover Norquist, a Republican...and George Bush pretty much did it in 2005, August, in fact. When you think Obama and what he's done, remember all the crap W did, and what he didn't. Bushwack & the Republicans put the Blackwater in the Bathtub during Katrina, and they were shooting at desperate people trying to get food and water out of flooded 7-11's...merchandise that would need to be discarded for public safety, anyway. But the Republicans pretty much drowned public safety in the bathtub too. Really? You really want THAT back? Move to New Orleans and then tell me so.
All the best, IF you work and vote for it,