Sunday, March 03, 2013

PNN - 3/3/13 - The VAWA Show

PNN - 3/3/13

7:10 - Meredith Ockman VP of State Now

07:10:00 PM  - Dr. Maureen McKenna
                        1st VP. Democratic Women's Club of Florida

07:31:00 PM - Seeta Bejui
                         Author

08:00 PM - Lisa Murano
                    Director of Advocacy

08:30 - 9:00 PM - Tangerine Bolen


====================================
1. SEA SHEPHARD BRANDED PIRATES by US Court
A US federal court has branded the conservationist group Sea Shepherd as pirates, and ordered them to cease their operations at sea, opening the door for Japanese whalers to pursue legal action in the United States against the activists.

Chief judge Alex Kozinski wrote in an 18-page opinion that “you don’t need a peg leg or an eye patch” to be classified as pirates.

"When you ram ships, hurl glass containers of acid, drag metal-reinforced ropes in the water to damage propellers and rudders, launch smoke bombs and flares with hooks, and point high-powered lasers at other ships, you are, without a doubt, a pirate," he said, adding that the group’s actions were the “very embodiment of piracy.”

But Sea Shepherd founder Paul Watson says Kozinski's belief that he is a "pirate" is one-sided and irrelevant.

"That's an opinion, it's certainly not a judgment," he told AAP. "He didn't mention anything in there about the fact that the Japanese have destroyed one of our ships (the Ady Gil in 2010), they've thrown concussion grenades at us, hit us with water cannons and laser beams."

Watson added that contrary to Kozinski's claims, Sea Shepherd has not rammed a single Japanese whaling vessel.

"The judge obviously has not seen the evidence or the facts; he's just making an opinion based on his own personal prejudices," he said.

Earlier, Japanese whalers from the Institute of Cetacean Research filed legal action in the US to stop the Sea Shepherd’s anti-whaling activism. But District Judge Richard Jones sided with the activists, leading to a ruling by a three-judge panel of the 9th US Circuit Court of Appeals, which reversed the original decision and criticized Jones.

The ruling will allow Japan's Institute of Cetacean Research to pursue legal action in the US against the Sea Shepherd’s activism. Even though whaling is illegal in Australian waters, the Sea Shepherd activists have no right to initiate a standoff, Kozinski said: “It is for Australia, not Sea Shepherd, to police Australia's court orders.”

The US ruling also criticized Jones, stating that he was “off base” when arguing that the protesters' tactics were nonviolent because they did not target people, just ships and equipment: “The district judge's numerous, serious and obvious errors identified in our opinion raise doubts as to whether he will be perceived as impartial in presiding over this high-profile case.”

The case will now be transferred to another judge.

For the past few weeks, the activists’ ships have been in a standoff with Japanese whaling vessels in the Southern Ocean. Sea Shepherd activists have also blockaded the Japanese ships from refueling at the Sun Laurel tanker ship.

Both sides have accused each other of damaging vessels during the standoff. The activists also claimed that the Japanese whalers have been using water cannons and stun grenades against them, and that Japan has deployed a military icebreaker to threaten them.

Japan has denied the reports; Australia is currently taking legal action against the country for its whaling activities.

Sea Shepherd vessels are known for chasing down Japanese whalers to disrupt their annual hunt and prevent the mammals from being killed. They set sail from Australia, and try to block or attack Japanese whaling vessels.

Whaling for commercial purposes has been banned for the past 25 years, but Japan still sends ships on annual hunts. Tokyo has argued that such hunts are for scientific research only, which is permitted by an international treaty, but several media reports have indicated that the Japanese hunts have no scientific value.

2. Washington, D.C. - Congressman Patrick E. Murphy (D-Jupiter) made the following statement applauding the passage of the bipartisan "Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act."  Following an overwhelmingly bipartisan vote of 78-22 in the Senate two weeks ago, Rep. Murphy voted in favor of the legislation, which the House passed today by a vote of 286-138.

"For the past 19 years since this legislation was first passed, it has saved lives and shaped the way we as a society have responded to domestic violence and to the abuse of the most vulnerable among us.  In Florida in 2011 alone, there were over 111,000 domestic violence offenses reported and over 68,000 arrests made related to domestic violence crimes. This legislation is critical to protecting women from abuse and reducing incidents of domestic violence and I was proud to see its reauthorization receive such broad bipartisan support.

"Protecting women from violence is not a partisan issue and it was beyond disappointing to see this crucial legislation  fall victim to partisan gridlock in the 112th Congress, causing it to expire over 500 days ago. I am proud to be a part of the 113th Congress which today made it known that we will put partisanship aside and the American people first in righting the wrong of allowing critical legislation such as VAWA to expire due to political gamesmanship in the last Congress."

The "Violence Against Women Act" was first passed in 1994, and has been renewed with strong bipartisan support every Congress, up until the 112th. Thanks to this legislation, every state has enacted laws to make stalking a crime and strengthened criminal rape statutes.  Since it became law, the annual incidence of domestic violence has dropped more than 50 percent – and reporting of domestic violence has increased as much as 51 percent. Prior to its passage, Rep. Murphy was a proud cosponsor of the "Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act," and signed onto a letter urging House Leadership to take up the bipartisan, Senate-passed bill to reauthorize this important legislation.  Nationally, three out of every ten women and one out of every ten men experience stalking, physical violence, or rape by a partner. In Florida in 2011, there were 192 deaths relating to domestic violence which accounted for over 19 percent of all homicides that year in the state.

3. warrantless wiretapping program

In 'Disturbing Decision' Supreme Court Rejects Challenge of Dragnet Surveillance of Americans
In 5-4 decision, Court rules plaintiffs cannot prove they have suffered from warrantless wiretapping program
- Andrea Germanos, staff writer

In what the ACLU has described as a "disturbing decision," the U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday rejected a challenge brought by human rights groups, journalists and others against the federal government's warrantless wiretapping program.

(Photo: Rose Trinh / flickr) The FISA Amendments Act of 2008 the groups challenged allow the National Security Agency to conduct widespread surveillance of Americans' international phone calls and emails.

But in the 5-4 decision on Tuesday, the Court rejected the challenge. Justice Alito, who wrote the majority opinion, says that the plaintiffs lack standing:

    because they cannot demonstrate that the future injury they purportedly fear is certainly impending and because they cannot manufacture standing by incurring costs in anticipation of non-imminent harm.

Wired's David Kravets writes that the decision

    was a clear victory for the President Barack Obama administration, which like its predecessor, argued that government wiretapping laws cannot be challenged in court. What’s more, the outcome marks the first time the Supreme Court decided any case touching on the eavesdropping program that was secretly employed in the wake of 9/11 by the President George W. Bush administration, and eventually codified into law twice by Congress.

"It's a disturbing decision," ACLU Deputy Legal Director Jameel Jaffer said in a statement following the decision, and adds:

    The FISA Amendments Act is a sweeping surveillance statute with far-reaching implications for Americans' privacy. This ruling insulates the statute from meaningful judicial review and leaves Americans' privacy rights to the mercy of the political branches.

    Justice Alito's opinion for the court seems to be based on the theory that the FISA Court may one day, in some as-yet unimagined case, subject the law to constitutional review, but that day may never come. And if it does, the proceeding will take place in a court that meets in secret, doesn't ordinarily publish its decisions, and has limited authority to consider constitutional arguments. This theory is foreign to the Constitution and inconsistent with fundamental democratic values.


4. Occupy the SEC Sues Federal Reserve, SEC, CFTC, OCC, FDIC and U.S. Treasury Over Volcker Rule Delays

Now, similar to the early court battles for women’s rights, Occupy Wall Street has tossed aside its encampments and bullhorns and donned its legal garb and pro hac vices. Occupy Wall Street’s brain trust, Occupy the SEC, just filed a federal lawsuit that encapsulates the crony capitalist state that passes today for democracy.

The organization is suing every federal regulator that resides in the pocket of Wall Street – which means they are suing every federal regulator of Wall Street. And, spunky group that they are, they’re naming individuals too. Here’s the rundown: Ben Bernanke, Chairman of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, Martin Gruenberg, Chairman of the FDIC, Elisse Walter, Chair of the SEC, Gary Gensler, Chair of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, Thomas Curry, Comptroller of the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, Mary Miller, Under Secretary for Domestic Finance at the Treasury, Neal Wolin, Acting Secretary of the Treasury.

Occupy the SEC is serving a valiant public service in bringing this lawsuit. It explains to the court that one of the most critical components of the 2010 Dodd-Frank Act that was supposed to reform Wall Street has yet to be enacted by the regulators and this is in violation of law. The key component is the Volcker Rule, named after former Fed Chairman Paul Volcker, that would prohibit most forms of trading for the house on Wall Street, known officially as proprietary trading.

The lawsuit informs the court that Dodd-Frank required that regulators adopt rules relating to this section “within nine months after the completion of a study by FSOC [Financial Stabilization Oversight Council] relating to the Volcker Rule. The FSOC completed that study in January 2011.” The complaint proceeds to explain that the legislative language “is unequivocal in setting this mandatory deadline, which the Defendants and the agencies under their control have missed.”

http://bit.ly/YK1lKQ

Occupy the SEC (OSEC) has filed a lawsuit in the Eastern District of New York against six federal agencies, over those agencies’ delay in promulgating a Final Rulemaking in connection with the “Volcker Rule” (Section 619 of the Dodd-Frank Act of 2010).

Occupy the SEC blog

http://occupythesec.nycga.net/2013/02/27/occupy-the-sec-sues-federal-reserve-sec-cftc-occ-fdic-and-u-s-treasury-over-volcker-rule-delays/

Occupy the SEC, an offshoot of the Occupy Wall Street movement that focuses on matters before government regulatory agencies, is suing the federal government in an attempt to speed up the process and get the Volcker Rule in place. The two plaintiffs in the case claim that their deposits are at risk, so long as banks are allowed to engage in risky gambling with federally backed funds:

Plaintiffs suffer the risk of irreparable injury to their deposits by reason of [the government's] non-action. The Plaintiffs’ bank accounts are subject to potential dissipation or liquidation resulting from bank losses occasioned by excessively risky trading activities by those banks. The Volcker Rule would institute structural safeguards insulating depository accounts from banks’ proprietary trading activities, thereby protecting Plaintiffs’ bank accounts. Defendants’ unjustified delay in finalizing the Volcker Rule puts Plaintiffs’ bank accounts at continued risk of financial loss.

https://www.facebook.com/Gilded.Age

5. Fukushima Breached
Steven Starr – Director of the Clinical Laboratory Science Program at the University of Missouri/Senior Scientist at Physicians for Social Responsibility – said:
The Japanese basically lied about what happened with the reactors for months. They said they were trying to prevent a meltdown, when in fact they knew within the first couple of days Reactors 1, 2, and 3 at Fukushima Daiichi had melted down, and they actually melted through the steel containment vessels.
So there was a worst case scenario that they were trying to hide, they even knew that at that time enormous amounts of radiation were released over Japan and some of it even went over Tokyo [...]
The melted core cracked the containment vessel, there really is no containment. So as soon as they pump the water in it leaks out again.

Asahi Shimbum notes that the location of Fukushima melted fuel is unknown. It could be ‘scattered’ in piping, vessels … “we’ve yet to identify all hotspots” around plant.
While the Japanese government tried to cover up the lack of containment with “mission accomplished” type announcements of “cold shutdown“, the loss of containment has been known for years.
For example, AP wrote in December 2011:
The nuclear fuel moved as it melted, so its condition and locations are little known.
AP noted a couple of days later:
The complex still faces numerous concerns, triggering criticism that the announcement of “cold shutdown conditions” is based on a political decision rather than science. Nobody knows exactly where and how the melted fuel ended up in each reactor ….
We noted last year:
If the reactors are “cold”, it may be because most of the hot radioactive fuel has leaked out.
***
The New York Times pointed out last month:
A former nuclear engineer with three decades of experience at a major engineering firm … who has worked at all three nuclear power complexes operated by Tokyo Electric [said] “If the fuel is still inside the reactor core, that’s one thing” …. But if the fuel has been dispersed more widely, then we are far from any stable shutdown.”
Indeed, if the center of the reactors are in fact relatively “cold”, it may be because most of the hot radioactive fuel has leaked out of the containment vessels and escaped into areas where it can do damage to the environment.
After drilling a hole in the containment vessel of Fukushima reactor 2, Tepco cannot find the fuel. As AP notes:
The steam-blurred photos taken by remote control Thursday found none of the reactor’s melted fuel ….
The photos also showed inner wall of the container heavily deteriorated after 10 months of exposure to high temperature and humidity, Matsumoto said.
TEPCO workers inserted the endoscope — an industrial version of the kind of endoscope doctors use — through a hole in the beaker-shaped container at the Fukushima Dai-ichi plant’s No. 2 reactor ….
New video of the inside of the torus room in Fukushima reactor 1 shows piles of sediment:
As nuclear expert Arnie Gundersen pointed out last year:
Tokyo Electric ran a probe into the basement of Unit 1. This is not inside the containment, this is outside the containment. On the top of the water surface they found lethal radiation, 1000 rem an hour.
But then they put the probe down into the water and what’s even worse is the bottom, the sediment on the bottom, was thousand of times hotter than that. And what that indicates is that fuel, nuclear fuel, has left the containment, as particles, and settled out on the bottom outside the containment. So, I think that’s a pretty clear indication that the containment was breached. It just makes decommissioning these plants… it was going too be hard already, but this information makes it worse.
Loss of containment of nuclear fuel also exists within the spent fuel pools at Fukushima.
For example, Chris Harris, former licensed Senior Reactor Operator and engineer says of new video released by Tepco showing extensive damage and debris in Fukushima spent fuel pool 3:


6, Kyodo: High concentration of Fukushima radioactive substances found in land animals — Frog with 6,700 Bq/kg outside evacuation zone

High concentration of radioactive cesium found in land animals
TOKYO, March 2, Kyodo
A high concentration of radioactive cesium has been found in a range of land animals and insects in areas around the site of the Fukushima nuclear plant accident, providing a clue to a mechanism of radioactivity accumulation in the food chain, a study showed Saturday.

According to a survey by the Tokyo University of Agriculture and Technology and Hokkaido University, over 6,700 becquerels per kilogram of cesium 137 was detected in a frog captured in Nihonmatsu, Fukushima Prefecture, some 40 kilometers west of the crippled nuclear plant.

The finding suggests animals positioned relatively high in the food chain tend to accumulate more radioactive materials, the research team said.

7.Fukushima cleanup workers break silence: Ordered to dump ‘debris’ into river — Gov’t “appeared not to believe him”

 Asahi Shimbun, March 1, 2013: CROOKED CLEANUP: Workers break silence to allege boss ordered corner-cutting [...] Three laborers involved in radioactive cleanup around the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant have alleged that a supervisor told them to dump debris in a river [...] At a news conference in the Diet building on Feb. 28, the men said a foreman ordered them to discard fallen branches and leaves into a river in an upland forest in Tamura, Fukushima Prefecture, in November 2012.  [...] this is the first time that decontamination workers have publicly come forward. [...] The third man, in his 40s, said he related what had happened to officials at the Environment Ministry. He spoke to them for more than an hour, he said, but they appeared not to believe him. [...]

8. Hanford Tanks are Leaking
OLYMPIA –As most of official Olympia repeatedly hit the “refresh” button Thursday morning on their computers to catch the state Supremes’ decision on tax supermajorities as soon as possible, a handful of legislators got a briefing on something with the potential for far more impact to the state.
Jane Hedges of the state Department of Ecology explained the intricacies of nuclear waste tanks at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation, doing her best to calm the uproar over recent news that six of the supposedly stable tanks are, in fact, leaking.
Trying to explain most things at Hanford to laypersons can be a Herculean task. . .
To read the rest of this item, or to comment, go inside the blog.

…once you get past the standard line that there’s tons of really bad stuff down there from all those nukes we made for the Cold War but, thankfully, haven’t had to use. So Hedges brought it down to a level that even legislators and reporters could understand.
First of all, the tanks are big. The largest are the size of a basketball court with a 75-foot wall around it. Inside the tanks are a “stew of different materials” that form a radioactive sludge, from which the liquid was supposed to have been pumped out years ago.
The sludge is about the consistency of peanut butter, Hedges said, but sometimes the interstitial liquid raises to the top. The what? Think organic peanut butter, she said. When it sits too long, it gets that oil layer on the top.
 Of the 177 tanks, 149 only have a single wall, or shell, and 67 of those were “suspected leakers”, but the rest were thought to be secure. Thought to be is a relative term, because in a container that big, a drop of even a fraction of an inch can represent many gallons of waste. You can’t just drop a giant dipstick into the tank.
As Hedges explained, there’s no easy way to get an extremely accurate measurement because lowering cameras or instruments into the tanks isn’t practical. The stuff inside melts the instruments, and eats rubber and plastic. The methods they do have showed some minor fluctuations that could have been anomalies until further testing showed that six supposedly secure tanks are leaking as much as 1,000 gallons of radioactive liquid a year.
Getting the liquid out of the tanks is a problem. First, there’s no good place to put it right now, because the more secure double-shelled tanks are also pretty full. Second, there’s the danger of triggering evaporation of the liquid, which would cause a tank to heat up and create a deflagration.
“In our common words, a ‘Boom,’” Hedges said. Hanford was responsible for making things that could create the world’s biggest booms, but a boom in a tank is to be greatly avoided.
As chairman of the Senate Energy Committee, Sen. Doug Ericksen, R-Ferndale, got to ask the question that most people’s minds were forming: Is there a safety threat?
“There is no threat to anyone at this time,” Hedges said. The leaking tanks are between 200 and 300 feet above groundwater, at least five miles from the Columbia River. They’re leaking below ground, so there’s no immediate danger to workers or the nearby communities, and a system to pump contaminated water out and clean it.
Long-term, though, the state needs the feds to get the radioactive waste into a more permanent solution, she said.

9. The Japanese Lied and are Lying
Steven Starr, Director of the Clinical Laboratory Science Program at the University of Missouri/Senior Scientist at Physicians for Social Responsibility: The Japanese basically lied about what happened with the reactors for months. They said they were trying to prevent a meltdown, when in fact they knew within the first couple of days Reactors 1, 2, and 3 at Fukushima Daiichi had melted down, and they actually melted through the steel containment vessels.
So there was a worst case scenario that they were trying to hide, they even knew that at that time enormous amounts of radiation were released over Japan and some of it even went over Tokyo [...]
The melted core cracked the containment vessel, there really is no containment. So as soon as they pump the water in it leaks out again.


EVENTS  - PNN

Broward/Palm Beach Coalition to Support the Balancing Act

CONGRESS WILL REGULARLY BE FACING CHOICES: SUPPORT PROGRAMS THAT HELP PEOPLE vs THE GOLIATH MILITARY. TAX THE WEALTHY or FURTHER SUBSIDIZE THEM.

JOIN TOGETHER TO PROMOTE AND SUPPORT THE FORMER.

East Delray Beach
 Monday 04 Mar , 06:00 PM
The MoveOn Council of South Palm Beach/North Broward is hosting the Broward/Palm Beach Coalition for the Balancing Act.
On February 5 Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN), Co-chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus and others introduced HR505, the Balancing Act, to replace the entire sequester with revenue increases and specific reductions in the Pentagon budget.
Occupy Fort Lauderdale Labor Outreach group, South Florida Jobs with Justice and War vs Human Needs of South Florida  have endorsed this legislation amd are are forming a Broward/Palm Beach Coalition for the Balancing Act. Ed Wujciak, of the Progressive Democrats of America and War vs Human Needs of South Florida, will present a tutorial on this proposed legislation and next steps will be planned. ALL SYMPATHIZERS ARE WELCOME.
Gizzi’s Coffee Shop
2275 S Federal Hwy #380
Delray Beach
(one traffic light south of Linton)
Feed your belly as you feed your mind. Great food and drinks will be available for purchase; please do not bring food from outside. The wise hungry get there at 5:45 to get your order in.


Thursday, March 7, 7 p.m. Toward a Broward/Palm Beach Coalition for the Balancing Act
On February 5 Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN), Co-chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus and others introduced HR505, the Balancing Act, to replace the entire sequester with revenue increases and specific reductions in the Pentagon budget.
South Florida Jobs with Justice, War vs Human Needs of South Florida and the Occupy Ft Lauderdale Labor Outreach group have endorsed this legislation. We are seeking to form a Broward/Palm Beach Coalition for the Balancing Act. Ed Wujciak, of the Progressive Democrats of America and War vs Human Needs of South Florida, will present a tutorial on this proposed legislation and next steps will be planned. ALL SYMPATHIZERS ARE WELCOME
PLEASE rsvp to warvhumanneeds@gmail.com,
954-531-1928
to get parking instructions.
1271 South Cypress Road, Pompano Beach


Saturday March 2, 10 a.m. Deerfield Progressive Forum
Professor Leonard Barry, FAU Climate Change Initiative. Climate Change in Florida
Activities Center adjacent to LeClub at Deerfield Century Village East.
Enter Century Village through the West Gate at West Drive (off Powerline between SW 10th St. and Hillsboro Blvd.). Tell the gatekeeper that you are attending the Forum.
Take an immediate left after the gate and then another immediate left. Follow the road around until you come to a "T," then turn left into the parking lot. $5 donation requested.  
954-428-1598 www.deerfieldprogressiveforum.org

Saturday March 2, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. South Florida Climate Action Partners
Gaining Traction: a workshop to support the Regional Climate Change 
Action Plan
Keynote speaker: James Murley, Exec. Director, South Florida Planning Council
Several of the Policy Advisory Committee members of the SE Florida Regional Climate Compact will also be on hand to explain this plan to build climate resiliency for our region over the next 5 years
Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Boca Raton
2601 St Andrews Blvd, Boca Raton
Adults $20; students $10 (includes breakfast and lunch)
Child care available @ $25
Registration: 561-531-0886; www.SFLClimateActionPartners.org

AWAKE Palm Beach County coalition meeting Sunday!

The Florida Legislative session begins Tuesday, and we need to be ready to push for or against
pending legislation as well as finalize plans for our FREE THE VOTE, AWAKE THE STATE Rally! 

Sunday, March 3rd, 2013 at 3:00 pm

SEIU FPSU Office: 2112 S. Congress Ave, Palm Springs, 33406
 AWAKE Palm Beach County is part of the AWAKE THE STATE movement.
We are a coalition of diverse community organizers and activists coming together
to build coalition and collaborate on important progressive issues.
Please bring action ideas and activist friends!


Monday, March 4, 6 p.m.
Broward/Palm Beach Coalition to Support the the Balancing Act
The MoveOn Council of South Palm Beach/North Broward is hosting the Broward/Palm Beach Coalition for the Balancing Act.
On February 5 Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN), Co-chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus and others introduced HR505, the Balancing Act, to replace the entire sequester with revenue increases and specific reductions in the Pentagon budget.
Occupy Fort Lauderdale Labor Outreach group, South Florida Jobs with Justice, and War vs Human Needs of South Florida have endorsed this legislation, and are forming a Broward/Palm Beach Coalition for the Balancing Act. Ed Wujciak, of the Progressive Democrats of America and War vs Human Needs of South Florida, will present a tutorial on this proposed legislation and next steps will be planned. 
ALL SYMPATHIZERS ARE WELCOME. warvhumanneeds@gmail.com 954-531-1928
Gizzi’s Coffee Shop
2275 S Federal Hwy #380
East Delray Beach
(one traffic light south of Linton)
Feed your belly as you feed your mind. Great food and drinks will be available for purchase; please do not bring food from outside. The wise hungry get there at 5:45 p.m. to get your order in.

Tuesday, March 5, 4 p.m.  Click on the link: Broward County Free The Vote Rally

Floridians shouldn't have to wait on line for hours to vote. No eligible voter should have to take the time to go to the polls on only to find they can't cast a regular ballot because self-serving politicians enacted cumbersome rules to protect their own seats.
We must establish a minimum of 14 early voting days, with 12 hours to vote each day. Floridians who move to a different county should once again be able to update their address on Election Day and cast a regular ballot. Additionally, any proposed amendment to Florida's constitution should be limited to 75 words to ensure reasonably sized ballots. There's a lot more to do, but this would be a good start.
Let's make this a priority on the first day of legislative session, March 5th. 
Join a Free The Vote, Awake The State  rally.
299 East Broward Boulevard
Fort Lauderdale


Tuesday, March 5, 5 p.m.  Click on the link: Palm Beach County Free The Vote Rally

Floridians shouldn't have to wait on line for hours to vote. No eligible voter should have to take the time to go to the polls on only to find they can't cast a regular ballot because self-serving politicians enacted cumbersome rules to protect their own seats.
We must establish a minimum of 14 early voting days, with 12 hours to vote each day. Floridians who move to a different county should once again be able to update their address on Election Day and cast a regular ballot. Additionally, any proposed amendment to Florida's constitution should be limited to 75 words to ensure reasonably sized ballots. There's a lot more to do, but this would be a good start.
Let's make this a priority on the first day of legislative session, March 5th. 
Join a Free The Vote, Awake The State  rally.
Supervisor of Elections Office
240 South Military Trail
West Palm Beach, FL

Thursday, March 7, 7 p.m. Broward/Palm Beach Coalition to Support the the Balancing Act
On February 5 Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN), Co-chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus and others introduced HR505, the Balancing Act, to replace the entire sequester with revenue increases and specific reductions in the Pentagon budget.
South Florida Jobs with Justice, War vs. Human Needs of South Florida, and the Occupy Fort Lauderdale Labor Outreach group have endorsed this legislation, and are forming a Broward/Palm Beach Coalition for the Balancing Act. Ed Wujciak, of the Progressive Democrats of America and War vs Human Needs of South Florida, will present a tutorial on this proposed legislation and next steps will be planned. 
ALL SYMPATHIZERS ARE WELCOME
RSVP to warvhumanneeds@gmail.com 954-531-1928 to get parking instructions.
            1271 South Cypress Road
            Pompano Beach, FL

Saturday March 9,
10 a.m. Deerfield Progressive Forum
Kitty Oliver, Author and Oral Historian. Race and Ethnic Relations in Story and Song
Activities Center adjacent to LeClub at Deerfield Century Village East. Enter Century Village through the West Gate at West Drive (off Powerline between SW 10th St. and Hillsboro Blvd.). Tell the gatekeeper that you are attending the Forum. Take an immediate left after the gate and then another immediate left. Follow the road around until you come to a "T," then turn left into the parking lot. $5 donation requested.
954-428-1598 www.deerfieldprogressiveforum.org


Sunday, March 10, 1-3 p.m. The Case Against The War on Drugs and Racist Mass Incarceration
Reading and discussion of, and action upon, the issues posed by Michelle Alexander in her book, 
The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness
Unitarian Universalist Church of Ft Lauderdale
3970 NW 21st Avenue
Oakland Park 33309
Join the eleven to twenty people from diverse environments, few of whom knew more than a few of the others, who have had three stimulating meetings and have resolved to meet three more times over the next six weeks to discuss Alexander’s analysis of the rebirth of a U.S. caste system whose population consists primarily of African-American men whose lives have been constrained by their contacts with the criminal justice system and who therefore face life-long discrimination in housing, employment, and civic participation. Alexander graphically depicts how this criminal justice system, based on a hyper-inflated War on Drugs, functions as a means of social control of this population following the dismantling of Jim Crow in the 1960s.
Alexander challenges the civil rights community and all of us to place the challenge of mass incarceration at the forefront of a new movement for racial justice in America.
At the March session, Chapters 5 and 6 will be discussed.
The Broward library system has numerous copies, and the book is available at all physical and on-line bookstores. The discussions are free. Those interested are invited to contact Bob Bender, bob@benderworld.com 954-531-1928.
Future sessions are Sundays, March 24 and April 7, each session from 1 to 3 p.m. at UUCFL.
SEE ALSO: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/ethan-nadelmann/obama-mass-incarceration_b_2669817.html
SEE ALSO: Prison and the Poverty Trap
http://mobile.nytimes.com/2013/02/19/science/long-prison-terms-eyed-as-contributing-to-poverty.xml?f=19


Monday March 11, 7:30-9 p.m. Public Lecture
Harry Targ, Professor of Political Science, Purdue University. The Empire in Disarray: Global Challenges to United States Power From Harry Truman to Barack Obama
The United States emerged from World War II as the "hegemonic" power in the international system. By virtue of its economic, political, and military strength, it fashioned a world based upon institutions which maximized opportunities for trade, investment, financial speculation, and economic development while maintaining military superiority. Over the subsequent sixty years, and responses to an increasingly resistant world, U.S. capacity to shape international relations has declined. The United States emerged from World War II as the "hegemonic" power in the international system. By virtue of its economic, political, and military strength it fashioned a world based upon institutions which maximized opportunities for trade, investment, financial speculation, and economic development while maintaining military superiority. Over the subsequent 60 years, and responses to an increasingly resistant world, U.S. capacity to shape international relations has declined.
This presentation will briefly describe the "golden age" of United States power and the increasing resistance to it. It will concentrate on how the foreign policy of Barack Obama has responded to a more complicated world during his first term which can be characterized as wavering between an effort to restore U.S. hegemony versus "pragmatically" adjusting to the 21st century world of diversified power and influence. The current debate about drone warfare reflects this contradiction. Finally, the presentation will suggest ways in which the peace movement might encourage a more pragmatic foreign policy in the future.
Harry Targ received his Ph. D from Northwestern University in 1967 and has been teaching and writing at Purdue University ever since. His teaching and research interests include international political economy, foreign policy, Central America and the Caribbean, labor and politics, and U.S. and global social movements. He has published 12 books on foreign policy, Cuba and Central America, the impacts of plant closings, and collections of essays on international political economy, culture and politics, and American politics. His most recent book, Diary of a Heartland Radical, Changemaker, 2011, consists of a collection of over 100 blog essays from www.heartlandradical.blogspot.com.
He has been an activist in peace and justice organizations, the labor movement, and the Committees of Correspondence for Democracy and Socialism for many years.

Vizcaya Clubhouse
15150 Michelangelo Blvd
Delray Beach
Tell the gatekeeper that you're going to the Clubhouse program.


Monday March 11
, Tuesday March 12, Wednesday March 13   Florida Atlantic University, Peace Studies Program
Public Lectures: Claude AnShin Thomas, Vietnam War veteran, Buddhist monk, international speaker, teacher, writer, and non-violent advocate.
Monday March 11, 4-5:30 p.m. FAU Jupiter, AD  119 (Auditorium)
At Hell's Gate: A Soldier's Journey from War to Peace
Tuesday, March 12, 7-9 p.m. FAU Boca, AL 189
The Roots of War, The Seeds of Peace
Public Lecture: Dr. Brian Shoup, Assistant Professor, Department of Political Science and Public Administration, Mississippi State University.
Wednesday, March 13, 6:30-8 p. m. FAU Boca Raton, PA 101
Democratization and State-Building in Post-Conflict Societies
FAU’s Peace Studies Program, established in 1999 within the Dorothy F. Schmidt College of Arts and Letters, has brought together students, faculty, and community members to explore pathways to peace and the process of peace-building. As an interdisciplinary program, Peace Studies draws from a broad range of fields: anthropology, literary studies, political science, communication, history, ethics, social work and more to offer an undergraduate certificate designed to complement a traditional major in any field. The FAU Peace Studies Program sponsors speakers specializing in peace-studies-related issues, free and open to the public thanks to the generosity of the Chastain-Johnson Fund and the Schmidt Family Foundation.
www.fau.edu/peacestudies
Facebook (Peace Studies and Peace Studies Student Association [PSSA])
Prof. Doug McGetchin, Director of FAU Peace Studies dmcgetch@fau.edu or 561-799-8226
ADA (Americans with Disability Act) Statement: If you need a reasonable accommodation to participate fully, please contact Prof. McGetchin by email (above), phone (above) or TTY Relay station 18009558770. Please make your needs known as soon as possible to allow time for effective accommodations, preferably by four business days prior to the event.


Tuesday March 12, 7-9 p.m. Lecture, Discussion, Raised Voices
Harry Targ, Professor of Political Science, Purdue University.The Influence of Marxist Ideas on the Performance and Politics of Paul Robeson, Woody Guthrie, and Pete Seeger
Professor Targ has teaching and research interests in U.S. and international political economy, U.S. foreign policy, organized labor and class struggle, plant closings and unemployment, and U.S. foreign policy in Central America. He has authored International Relations in a World of Imperialism and Class Struggle; Strategy of an Empire in Decline: Cold War II; and co-authored Plant Closings: International Context and Social Costs. His book, Cuba and the United States: A New World Order? was published in 1992. A co-edited volume, Marxism Today, was published in 1996. Also, he has co-authored children's books on Guatemala and Honduras. More recently he has published Challenging Late Capitalism, Neoliberal Globalization and Militarism; and Diary of a Heartland Radical.
Then, join PinkSlip and Solidarity Singers in singing a couple of Woody Guthrie and Pete Seeger songs that Targ references in his lecture.
HOSTED BY BOB & PATTY BENDER AND JOAN FRIEDENBERG & MARK SCHNEIDER
At the home of Joan Friedenberg and Mark Schneider
5165 Palazzo Place
Boynton Beach
In Tuscany Bay, off Military between Woolbright and Flavor Pict
RSVP (required for gate) by Sunday March 10th 561-752-0946
Light refreshments will be served.


Saturday March 16, 9:30 a.m.-5 p.m. All Peoples’ Diversity Day
Fourth Annual Diversity Festival, free of charge!
In 2060 European Americans will not be dominant in our society. It’s no longer just a nice thing to connect with people who are different; it’s a necessity if we are going to live in peace and harmony.
Why an arts festival? The arts touch people’s hearts. Starting at 11 am, dazzling performances of dance, music and social theater spanning the globe will commence on the stage at 15-minute intervals. Over forty interactive, merchandise and food booths will provide wonderful things to see and do for the whole family.
To sign-up for free 9:30 to 11:00 am kid’s craft workshop call 561 495-9818.
Pompey Park  (indoors)
1101 NW 2nd Street & NW 10th Avenue
Delray Beach

Saturday March 16, 10 a.m. Deerfield Progressive Forum
Lynn Appleton, Professor of Sociology, FAU. Reagan-esque Revolution
Activities Center adjacent to LeClub at Deerfield Century Village East. Enter Century Village through the West Gate at West Drive (off Powerline between SW 10th St. and Hillsboro Blvd.). Tell the gatekeeper that you are attending the Forum. Take an immediate left after the gate and then another immediate left. Follow the road around until you come to a "T," then turn left into the parking lot. $5 donation requested.
954-428-1598 www.deerfieldprogressiveforum.org


Saturday March 16, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Workshop on Economic Justice
Dr. Edith Rasell, Ph.D. economist, Minister for Economic Justice of the UCC Justice and Ministries Office in Cleveland.
The morning program will focus on the state of the economy today and the structures which promote the serious and unjust gaps in wealth, as well as what is required to address these issues.
In the afternoon, Dr. Rasell will help us explore these economic problems from a faith perspective and what it means to be an economic justice church.
Dr. Rasell was formerly with the Economic Policy Institute, a progressive think tank in Washington D.C.
            A continental breakfast & sign in begin at 9:30 am. You are invited to come for part or all of the day. The cost, including breakfast & lunch, is $10.
            For more info and to register, contact Carol Lewis at 561-346-4161 or clewismft@aol.com.

First Congregational Church
1415 North K Street
Lake Worth, FL

Saturday March 16, 4 p.m. Occupy Ft Lauderdale Labor Outreach
Protect Gains for Workers: Combat Impending Efforts to Squash Local Living Wage and 
Wage Theft/Recovery Ordinances
What are the current efforts in Tallahassee to preempt counties retroactively from enacting these important ordinances, which benefit both working people and our local economies?
Mobilize and Fight Back!
Unitarian Universalist Church of Ft Lauderdale
3970 NW 21st Avenue
Oakland Park 33309

Sunday March 17, 12 noon to 3 p.m. MoveOn Council of South Palm Beach/North Broward
Films for Thought 2013: American Autumn: an Occudoc (2012)
Gizzi’s Coffee Shop
2275 S Federal Hwy #380
Delray Beach
Join us one Sunday of every month for an update on local MoveOn activities followed by a viewing and informal discussion of a thought-provoking film. Feed your belly as you feed your mind. Great food and drinks will be available for purchase; please do not bring food from outside.

Monday, March 18, 7-9 p.m. Florida Atlantic University, Peace Studies Program
Public Lecture: Dr. Doug McAdam, Department of Sociology, Stanford University. Race, Politics, the Media and the Burning of Black Churches, 1996-2001
FAU Boca, AL 189
FAU’s Peace Studies Program, established in 1999 within the Dorothy F. Schmidt College of Arts and Letters, has brought together students, faculty, and community members to explore pathways to peace and the process of peace-building. As an interdisciplinary program, Peace Studies draws from a broad range of fields: anthropology, literary studies, political science, communication, history, ethics, social work and more to offer an undergraduate certificate designed to complement a traditional major in any field. The FAU Peace Studies Program sponsors speakers specializing in peace-studies-related issues, free and open to the public thanks to the generosity of the Chastain-Johnson Fund and the Schmidt Family Foundation.
www.fau.edu/peacestudies
Facebook (Peace Studies and Peace Studies Student Association [PSSA])
Prof. Doug McGetchin, Director of FAU Peace Studies dmcgetch@fau.edu or 561-799-8226
ADA (Americans with Disability Act) Statement: If you need a reasonable accommodation to participate fully, please contact Prof. McGetchin by email (above), phone (above) or TTY Relay station 18009558770. Please make your needs known as soon as possible to allow time for effective accommodations, preferably by four business days prior to the event.


Sunday March 24, 2 p.m. and 7 p.m.  Woody Guthrie Tribute
Woody Guthrie: A Hundred Years of Song is a narrated and sing-along concert about the life of Woody Guthrie. It is being produced, along with hundreds of other concerts around the country, in celebration of Woody Guthrie's 100th Birthday. The words to all of the songs will be projected on the stage so the audience can sing along. Period and current photos illustrating the sentiments of each of the songs will be shown. Performing will be a troupe of Lake Worth's finest musicians. The concerts benefit the Lake Worth Playhouse, the Lake Worth Cultural Renaissance Foundation (LULA), the Downtown Cultural Alliance (DCA) and the Clay Glass Metal Stone Gallery.
Woody Guthrie was Arlo Guthrie's father.
$20/$25 in advance. $26/$30 at the door. www.lakeworthplayhouse.org/limited.html
561-586-6410


Mondays April 1, April 8, April 15 ACLU, Up Close and Personal
A series of three lectures with PowerPoint support on ACLU by Geoff Kashdan, Vice President of ACLU-Palm Beach County
April 1 The History of ACLU, Film and Discussion
April 8 The War Against (teaching) Evolution in Public Schools
April 15 The ACLU's Most Controversial Cases
Delray Life Long Learning Community Institute at the Delray Public Library
$45 for 3 sessions www.delraylibrary.org


Friday, April 5,
Thursday April 11 Florida Atlantic University, Peace Studies Program
Public Lecture: Dr. Dennis Hanlon, Lecturer in Film Studies at the University of St. Andrews (Scotland).
Friday April 5, 4-5:30 PM, FAU Boca Raton, Room TBA
Jorge Sanjin├ęs’ “All-Encompassing Sequence Shot”: From Revolutionary Practice to Indigenismo?
Public Lecture: Dr. David Cortright, Director of Policy Studies at University of Notre Dame's Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies.


Thursday, April 11, 7-9 PM, FAU Boca Raton, PA 101

The Power of Nonviolence
FAU’s Peace Studies Program, established in 1999 within the Dorothy F. Schmidt College of Arts and Letters, has brought together students, faculty, and community members to explore pathways to peace and the process of peace-building. As an interdisciplinary program, Peace Studies draws from a broad range of fields: anthropology, literary studies, political science, communication, history, ethics, social work and more to offer an undergraduate certificate designed to complement a traditional major in any field. The FAU Peace Studies Program sponsors speakers specializing in peace-studies-related issues, free and open to the public thanks to the generosity of the Chastain-Johnson Fund and the Schmidt Family Foundation.
www.fau.edu/peacestudies


Facebook (Peace Studies and Peace Studies Student Association [PSSA])
Prof. Doug McGetchin, Director of FAU Peace Studies dmcgetch@fau.edu or 561-799-8226
ADA (Americans with Disability Act) Statement: If you need a reasonable accommodation to participate fully, please contact Prof. McGetchin by email (above), phone (above) or TTY Relay station 18009558770. Please make your needs known as soon as possible to allow time for effective accommodations, preferably by four business days prior to the event.
 
Sunday April 14, 1 p.m. Media and Politics
FAU Professor of Communications  Mike Budd
Unitarian Universalist Church of Ft Lauderdale
3970 NW 21st Avenue
Oakland Park 33309

Sunday April 14, 12 noon to 3 p.m. MoveOn Council of South Palm Beach/ North Broward
Films for Thought 2013: The End of Poverty?  (2008) Global poverty in the shadow of wealth.
Gizzi’s Coffee Shop
2275 S Federal Hwy #380
Delray Beach
Join us one Sunday of every month for an update on local MoveOn activities followed by a viewing and informal discussion of a thought-provoking film. Feed your belly as you feed your mind. Great food and drinks will be available for purchase; please do not bring food from outside.
 
Sunday April 21,
1-4 p.m. Network of Spiritual Progressives/Interfaith Justice League
Interfaith Earth Day Fair
Veterans Park, Boca Raton




PNN- Listen Now
 
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