Monday, December 30, 2019

Pope Francis on Migration

Trump Cuts Legal Immigration

WH Cuts Legal Immigration By Two Thirds
Trump just quietly cut legal immigration by up to 65%. Vox “With one proclamation signed late Friday evening last week, President Donald Trump made his adviser Stephen Miller’s dreams of restricting legal immigration a reality. When it goes into effect November 3, the proclamation will make getting into the US much harder for immigrants sponsored by family members, the phenomenon Trump has excoriated as ‘chain migration.’ It will throw up a barrier to those coming through the diversity visa lottery — the subject of Trump’s ‘shithole countries’ rant — which allows the US to accept 55,000 immigrants annually from countries with historically low levels of immigration. Researchers estimate it could keep up to two-thirds of future immigrants out who would be admitted under current law. Under the proclamation, immigrants who do not have health insurance and cannot afford to pay medical care costs will not be able to move to the US permanently. The move could bar roughly 375,000 immigrants annually, based on projections of data from fiscal year 2017, according to Julia Gelatt, a senior policy analyst at the Migration Policy Institute. Those 375,000 immigrants won’t be affected at random. The proclamation targets immigrants who have come to the US legally under policies Trump and his advisers often attack.”

Friday, December 20, 2019

Why I support Impeachment

I support impeach because...

Add your reason in the comments section. 

Wednesday, December 18, 2019

President Trump is impeached !

Thoughts on Impeachment

 Talking Points Memo; December 18, 2019 10:45 a.m. 
With the day now upon us, I wanted to lay out some points on impeachment which seem to me essential and definitional.

The signature reality of the Trump Era is confusion. False stories crowd out real ones – false stories driven less by ignorance than as a mode of attack. We hear endlessly about ‘two realities’, in which partisans on either side of the political divide see the same things and come away with radically different understandings of them. This is mainly false. We see and understand the same things but simply react differently. The great threat we face as a country isn’t poor logical reasoning but the growth of authoritarianism and leader-worship. 
Here are three points that, for me, function as a sort of north star through this addled and chaotic process.
One: The President is accused of using extortion to coerce a foreign power to intervene in a US presidential election on his behalf. 
Two: There is no one in US politics who would ever find that behavior remotely acceptable in a President of the opposite party. 
Three: The evidence that the President did what he is accused of doing is simply overwhelming. The documentary evidence points overwhelmingly to guilt. His sometimes unwilling accomplices say he is guilty. His own words prove his guilt. He continues to justify what he is accused of and continues to do the same things again and again in plain sight.
This process has been so clotted with tantrums, goalpost-moving and dissimulation that it can be hard to keep one’s bearings. For me, those three essential points clarify the matter and drown out the yelling and stomping.
Another observation.
Ordinary venal corruption can be impeachable. Some serious crimes that are not tied to a President’s official duties might be impeachable. But the crimes Trump is accused of – and of which he is clearly guilty – are definitional examples of the kind of wrongdoing impeachment was designed to combat. 

Sunday, December 15, 2019

Bretón has it wrong- Again

Bee opinion columnist Bretón has a harsh column about the SCUSD budget crisis.

Part of the problem is what he assumes.,

He argues teachers should take a pay cut, and that they should pay some of their health care. This is the essence of austerity.  He assumes that the way to fix the problem is to pay teachers less,

( You can see how well this works out.  The Bee now pays its reporters less. They have over 100 fewer reporters. The quality of the paper has diminished substantially.  It is no longer a substantive paper. see

Why assume that cutting salaries is the answer?  Lets try an alternative.

Assume the teachers should be paid well.  Assume that teachers should have quality health care for themselves and their families.  This is what unions are fighting for all across the nation,. It could be called Medicare for All.

Well, if we need to pay teachers well, more money will be needed for schools.  Yes, we should tax more and adequately fund our schools.  We have not done that since the passage of Prop. 13.  Austerity, underfunding schools, is a lousy policy. Just fighting over who gets their salaries cut is avoiding the important issues.  Fund the schools.

Here is how.

Friday, December 13, 2019

NEA-AFT Host Presidential Forum

When the nation’s two national teachers unions quickly endorsed Hillary Clinton for president in 2015, they faced intense backlash from fellow labor leaders and from rank-and-file members who thought they jumped the gun.
Thousands of members of the American Federation of Teachers signed a petition asking the union to withdraw its endorsement, and National Education Association members protested in letters that cited strong support within the organization for 
This time around, both of the powerful labor groups are slowing their endorsement process, taking more input from members and holding public events with candidates. 
The unions’ endorsement processes will culminate on Saturday, when they co-host a public education forum with 2020 candidates, televised by MSNBC, with civil rights and education groups like the NAACP and Voto Latino. It will be the first time such an event has ever been held.
“We have been waiting about 72,000 years for this. It really is historic,” said NEA President Lily Eskelsen García, whose union has more than 3 million members.
The forum will include Sen. Michael Bennet (D-Colo.), former Vice President Joe Biden, Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.), South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg, Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), billionaire Tom Steyer and Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.).
The AFT, which has 1.7 million members, became the first international labor union to endorse Hillary Clinton in July 2015. For the 2020 election, the group has completely overhauled its endorsement process. They’ve held town halls around the country with candidates and invited them to spend time with teachers. Locals are now allowed to endorse candidates apart from the national organization ― United Teachers Los Angeles has already endorsed Bernie Sanders, and AFT President Randi Weingarten said at least one other local is working on their own endorsement process. 
American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten (R) and National Education Association President Lily Eskelsen García (2nd from R) said their unions are getting a lot of attention from Democratic candidates in the 2020 election.
Most major Democratic candidates have participated in one of the AFT’s town halls. Buttigieg is still working to schedule one, Weingarten said. Booker, who has had a historically tense relationship with teachers unions, hasn’t shown as much interest.
“We’ve really tried to pursue it, and let me just say it hasn’t gotten scheduled yet,” said Weingarten. A spokesperson for Booker did not respond to a request for comment. 
Meanwhile, Warren and Sanders have asked for a second town hall appearance. 

Thursday, December 12, 2019

If You Don't Think Sanders Can Win ?

Don’t Think Sanders Can Win? You Don’t Understand His Campaign
There was a time in America when being called a socialist could end a political career. Not anymore.
By Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor
Dr. Taylor is the author of “From #BlackLivesMatter to Black Liberation.”
·       Dec. 10, 2019
As the Democratic primary elections get closer, the party leadership has begun to fret in public about universal health care and other ambitious proposals. Even former President Barack Obama tried to assuage donors’ fears in November when he said that the “average American” doesn’t think we need to “tear down the system and remake it.” His comment captured the essence of tensions that have roiled the party for months. Party elites believe focusing squarely on President Trump’s record will end his presidency, while others counter that the Democrats also have to champion bold policies. 
The surprising resilience of the campaign of Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont vindicates the latter approach. Mr. Sanders’s improbable rise to Democratic front-runner began in 2015 when he organized his campaign for president around a redistributive agenda of universal health care and free college, along with a number of other progressive reforms. Party insiders dismissed this as fanciful and out of touch, but Mr. Sanders aggressively challenged Hillary Clinton for the nomination while picking up 13 million votes.

Tuesday, December 10, 2019


See post below.

SCUSD Budget Crisis- State Audit

December 10, 2019====See also  Community Forum post below.
The Governor of California President pro Tempore of the Senate Speaker of the Assembly
State Capitol
Sacramento, California 95814

Dear Governor and Legislative Leaders:
As directed by the Joint Legislative Audit Committee, my office conducted an audit of the Sacramento City Unified School District (Sacramento Unified). Our assessment focused on Sacramento Unified’s financial condition, and the following report details the audit’s findings and conclusions. We determined that Sacramento Unified has not proactively addressed its financial problems.
Sacramento Unified failed to take sufficient action to control its costs in three main areas—teacher salaries, employee benefits, and special education. Sacramento Unified increased its spending by $31 million annually when it approved a new labor contract with its teachers union in 2017. Despite warnings from the Sacramento County Office of Education that it could not afford the agreement, the Sacramento City Unified School District Board of Education approved the agreement without a plan for how it would pay for it. Sacramento Unified also failed to control the costs of the generous employee benefits it provides, which increased by 52 percent from fiscal years 2013–14 through 2017–18. We also found that Sacramento Unified lacked clear policies to guide staff on what are appropriate expenditures for special education, limiting its ability to control these costs. Consequently, Sacramento Unified projects it will largely deplete its general fund in October 2021 and will likely need to accept a loan from the State to continue operating. If it accepts such a loan, the required loan payments would result in less funding for students and a loss of local control to an appointed administrator.
Although both Sacramento Unified and its teachers union have proposed changes to stabilize the district’s finances, we found that the proposals are unlikely to solve the district’s ongoing financial problems. In fact, several proposals from the teachers union would increase costs dramatically. Given that accepting state assistance would result in less funds for students, we would have expected Sacramento Unified to develop a detailed plan for resolving its financial concerns, but it has not done so. It states that it needs to make $27 million in reductions by fiscal year 2021–22, but even that amount may not be sufficient to end its deficit spending. We have identified a number of options the district could take, including making changes to salaries and benefits for different groups of employees; however, if it is to avoid the negative effects of insolvency, Sacramento Unified must act quickly to develop and implement a plan.
Respectfully submitted,
ELAINE M. HOWLE, CPA California State Auditor

Report is not the same as the SCUSD press release on the subject.
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