Malloy & Bronin: Racism, Sexism & Neoliberalism

Community Party Radio on So-Metro Radio

Commentary on urban issues from a grassroots perspective. First and third Tuesday of each month. 8:00 PM Eastern Time 7:00 PM Central 5:00 PM Pacific. Tune in! Replays the following Wednesday, same time. Next show: April 5. Co-host: Mary Sanders. Social worker Janet Frazao-Conaci will join us for a discussion about the state budget and the presidential election. http://sometroradio.com/ Check out our No Sellout blog for info on the rest of our Community Party Media lineup, including False Choice: the Bipartisan Attack on the Working Class, the Poor and Communities of Color. https://hendu39.wordpress.com/2015/12/20/community-party-media-3/

Meagan Hockaday Act

Meagan Hockaday was murdered by Oxnard, California police officer Roger Garcia in front of her children on March 28, 2015. https://www.facebook.com/meaganmatters/timeline Garcia has not been charged. The Community Party’s Meagan Hockaday Act will include enhanced criminal penalties for excessive use of force by the police against mentally ill people and individuals in crisis, in addition to whenever children are present. Our legislation will implement a new international approach to policing, based on a successful model in the United Kingdom and Canada that emphasizes de-escalation and treatment. Public Health Committee co-chair Rep. Matt Ritter is collaborating with us on this bill. Stay tuned for updates and action alerts. Meagan Matters! https://hendu39.wordpress.com/2015/05/06/meagan-matters-police-murder-of-black-women-ignored-by-corporate-media-activists/ The official bill has been drafted: you can view it here. https://hendu39.wordpress.com/2016/02/24/meagan-hockaday-act-bill-language/ Contact lawmakers and tell them to support our legislation. https://hendu39.wordpress.com/2016/02/26/action-alert-support-the-meagan-hockaday-act/

Check out CP’s 2016 legislative package at our No Sellout blog. https://hendu39.wordpress.com/2016/01/03/community-party-2016-legislative-package/

Policy Watch: Public Sector Largest Black Employer/Legislation Attacks Unions, Protects the Rich

Hartford Courant columnist and WNPR personality Colin McEnroe is the Democrats’ court jester. McEnroe makes his living as a stooge for the party: a prime example is his duplicitous commentary on the state budget issue during his appearances on the Where We Live program, hosted by Gov. Dan Malloy’s other flunky, John Dankosky. Last week McEnroe defended Malloy’s neoliberal attack on state employees by saying that the SEBAC coalition of unions has been uncooperative (I’m a state worker). Apparently McEnroe thinks that the unions should be doing more to aid Malloy in his agenda of privatization, and rolling back workers’ gains in wages and benefits that took decades of real blood and sweat to obtain. Of course McEnroe left out the fact that state employees have agreed to concessions TWICE since 2009, and that SEBAC leaders changed the union bylaws immediately after workers rejected the 2011 concessions deal, in order to ensure that the package would be ratified on a second vote. If it sounds like I’m picking on McEnroe, it’s because I am. McEnroe blatantly lies by leaving out facts that don’t fit his narrative, because his job is to act as Minister of Misinformation for the Democrats. That isn’t political commentary, it’s propaganda. McEnroe is the epitome of the phony white liberal: he attacks Rush Limbaugh for being a bigot, while he defends the racist and sexist neoliberal agenda that targets human services (disproportionately harming people of color) and the public sector, the largest employer of Black people and women.

Nina Martin of New America Media interviewed UC Berkley labor economist Steven Pitts about the vital link between Blacks and public sector jobs.

“GOP attacks on public sector jobs and unions will disproportionately affect blacks and women, according to a new analysis of employment data by a labor-policy specialist from the University of California, Berkeley. ‘We found that blacks are much more likely to be employed by the public sector than are whites,’ said Steven Pitts, an economist with the university’s Center for Labor Education and Research, where he focuses on employment issues involving the black community. One in five African-American workers are employed in public sector jobs, Pitts said, versus one in six white workers and one in ten Latino workers. He said blacks are 30 percent more likely to hold such jobs than whites.

For black men, the public sector—everything from police officers and firefighters to sanitation workers and government clerks—is the largest employer, providing 18 percent of jobs. For black women, it’s the No. 2 employer, accounting for 23.3 percent of jobs. By comparison, the public sector employs 14.2 percent of white male and 19.8 percent of white female workers… The assault on public sector employment could not come at a worse time for blacks, who have been much harder hit by job losses—and cuts in the social safety net—than the workforce as a whole. Pitts traces the high percentage of black workers in the public sector to the civil rights movement in the 1930s and ’40s. ‘Historically, blacks pushed for better employment opportunities in both the private and the public sector,’ Pitts explained, adding that the federal government proved more receptive than private companies or local governments.

The fight for collective-bargaining rights is another ‘important but often overlooked part of the black civil rights narrative,’ Pitts went on. In fact, Martin Luther King Jr. was in Memphis pushing for the right of city sanitation workers to unionize when he was assassinated on April 4, 1968. For blacks and others, ‘the best anti-poverty program is union organizing,’ the UC Berkeley Labor Center notes on its website. ‘Though African Americans have significantly higher poverty rates than whites, blacks’ unionization rates actually exceed those of whites at both the state and national level,’ the site says.” Pitts went on to talk about how the neoliberal policies of elected officials such as Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker “have racial impacts that are unconscious and widespread”.

I urge folks who want the truth about economic justice in this state to get their information from people like Derek Thomas, Fiscal Policy Fellow at Connecticut Voices for Children. Thomas’ Twitter page is a gold mine of facts. https://twitter.com/dlthomasCT Thomas testified against legislation that is emblematic of the neoliberal agenda in this state. While Malloy and lawmakers use declining revenues as the central component of their justification for attacking the poor and state employees, the Finance, Revenue and Bonding Committee introduced S.B. 446, AN ACT REPEALING THE ESTATE AND GIFT TAXES. https://www.cga.ct.gov/asp/cgabillstatus/cgabillstatus.asp?selBillType=Bill&which_year=2016&bill_num=446

Thomas pointed out in his testimony that $115.2 million in revenue would be lost by implementing the repeal: that’s about HALF of the current $226 million budget deficit! Thomas posted a report on his Twitter page by Greg Bordonaro of the Hartford Business Journal, about Connecticut corporations stashing profits that could be taxed for much needed revenue.

“Fourteen of Connecticut’s largest corporations had a combined $180 billion in offshore profits on their books in 2015, down nearly 5 percent from a year earlier, according to a new report from public policy research group Citizens for Tax Justice.

Fairfield-based General Electric, which is moving its corporate headquarters to Boston, had the most offshore profits in 2015, totaling $104 billion, followed by Farmington-based United Technologies, with $29 billion in offshore profits.

Nationwide, the United States’ 303 largest corporations held $2.4 trillion in offshore profits—$200 billion more than in 2014—that could be costing the U.S. as much as $695 billion in federal taxes, the report said.”

Meanwhile Malloy’s lieutenant, Hartford Mayor Luke Bronin, was trying to pass a union busting bill at the State Capitol: S.B. 464, AN ACT ESTABLISHING THE HARTFORD FINANCIAL SUSTAINABILITY COMMISSION. https://www.cga.ct.gov/asp/cgabillstatus/cgabillstatus.asp?selBillType=Bill&which_year=2016&bill_num=464 A public hearing on the legislation was held Monday. Courant reporters Steven Goode and Vanessa de la Torre reported on the bill last week. “Members of Hartford’s legislative delegation said Wednesday they would not support proposed legislation, as written, that would give a ‘financial sustainability commission’ power over city labor contracts. Mayor Luke Bronin has been seeking the legislation in an effort to create a group that could review city finances and make recommendations. The group, which would include Bronin and several other elected city officials, would also have the power to enter into negotiations over retiree pensions and health and welfare benefits, and approve or reject collective bargaining agreements for a new term, including those of the board of education. In addition, the bill would allow the new commission to reopen negotiations with Hartford bargaining units that are engaged in arbitration upon passage of the bill. The head of the Hartford Federation of Teachers, Andrea Johnson, said she considered the proposed bill a violation of the collective bargaining process and pointed to the National Labor Relations Act, enacted by Congress in 1935.

‘So that’s decades,’ said Johnson, who planned to meet with the mayor on Thursday, ‘and it’s all of a sudden being questioned.’ ”

Malloy is the poster child for why we need a grassroots movement to push back against the neoliberal attack on the poor and public sector workers in Connecticut. The left is a hostage of the Democratic Party, which is underscored by Malloy’s arrogant, threatening remarks toward state employees regarding layoffs. Malloy is doing his best to instill fear and panic among the workers, in the hopes that they will pressure union leaders to reopen a contract that doesn’t expire until 2022. Malloy frames his neoliberal agenda as the “new economic reality”. It’s time to bring a new political reality to this state during this election year, by challenging the Democratic/Republican duopoly. CNN pundit Bill Press made an excellent point on Bernie Sanders blowing Hillary Clinton off the atlas in the Alaska, Washington and Hawaii presidential primaries: Press talked about how Sanders’ popularity is a reaction by working class voters to the policies of the Democratic establishment, who must examine the need for “profound change” within their party. Connecticut Democrats, take note…

The announcement below is from the Hartford Rising website. Come and make your voice heard.

“Fairness for the 99%” March and Rally

Monday, April 4 at 5 PM – 6:30 PM


Join Unity, Equality and Democracy Connecticut and Hartford Rising! as we hold politicians accountable for fighting for all of us. The coalition will issue report cards based on how legislators have voted and then march to the State Capitol Building to directly hold our lawmakers accountable.

The event will take place on Monday, April 4th from 5:00 to 6:30 PM starting at the Emanuel Lutheran Church on Capitol Avenue in Hartford.

On Martin Luther King Jr. weekend, civil rights, community, and labor organizations came together to fight for Democracy, Unity, and Equality, and a new coalition was born. The groups agreed to continue Dr. King’s fight to end racial and economic inequality.

Let’s stand up for the public servants who stand up for us. And let’s hold accountable those who stand against us. It’s our state government. Let’s make sure it’s on our side!

5:00 PM Emanuel Lutheran Church, 311 Capitol Ave, Hartford 6:00 PM – State Capitol, 210 Capitol Ave, Hartford

Find tickets at hartfordrising.org

Follow CP on Twitter for state, national and world news headlines. https://twitter.com/CommunityParty1 Check out my Facebook page for daily news commentary. https://www.facebook.com/david.samuels.948 Listen to WQTQ 89.9 FM for CP’s public service announcements on our racial justice initiatives https://www.facebook.com/wqtqfm and So-Metro Radio the first and third Tuesday of each month at 8:00 PM for commentary on urban issues http://www.sometroradio.com/ Check out our No Sellout blog (https://hendu39.wordpress.com/) for the complete archive of CP columns and Northend Agent’s archive for selected columns (http://www.northendagents.com/). Contact us at 860-206-8879 or info.community.party@gmail.com

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