A Look Back at Reparations, Trump’s Plan for Addressing Poverty, Our Obscene Oil Subsidies, Looming Fascism and More

The post includes links to all of last week’s posts, along with a preview of the Democratic Presidential debates on tap for Wednesday and Thursday nights. Senators Udall and Heinrich announce $30M in Federal funding for local jurisdictions impacted by asylum relief efforts.  Read on.

Invest in Retake Today.  At most every meeting we have we neglect to ask for contributions. We almost never include an appeal in our posts. But developing a statewide movement has costs, even if we are all volunteers. And we could accelerate the development of that movement with a stable base of funding supporting that work. And so, today and in every post going forward, we will begin including a link to our new donate page and it will appear in the banner of our home page from now on. It won’t scream at you, but it will be there. If you believe in what we are doing and can afford to part with $10, $20, or $50 a month, that would be a tremendous help. We want to be transparent, so on our donate page we include a description of our costs and plans for a few investments in the future. If you believe in what we are doing, please help. We need to get this train moving faster.  Your investment can help.  Click here to invest in a just future in New Mexico. And thank you for your ongoing support

Today, Monday, June 24 at 4:30 pm at Santa Fe National Forest Headquarters 11 Forest Lane. Public Meeting on Maintaining the SF Forest.  The Forest Service has scheduled two public informational meetings regarding the Santa Fe Mountains Landscape Resiliency Project. Your first opportunity to present your concerns on behalf of your health and the wellbeing of the forest is scheduled for 4:30 p.m. June 24 at the Santa Fe National Forest Headquarters, 11 Forest Lane, Santa Fe. A second meeting will be held on Saturday, June 29 from 9:30-Noon  at Hondo Fire Station, 645 Old Las Vegas Highway.

Wednesday and Thursday, June 26 and 27. 6pm for food & conversation. 7pm for streaming debate sponsored by the Santa Fe Sunrise Movement and Santa Fe Democratic Party. 1420 Cerrillos. For those watching from home, the debates will air at 7pm MT on NBC, MSNBC and Telemundo.  It seems too early, but the first debates are here and as they approach I admit to feeling a bit of eagerness to hear what these folks say, and hopefully soon, narrow the field to 4-5 candidates. Although, remember in early 1976, no one had heard of Jimmy Carter and in early 1992 no one had heard of Bill Clinton, so things can change with a stunning performance or a slip of the tongue. Stay tuned. If you want to offer up your thoughts on the candidates, offer a comment and tell us what you are hoping for from the debate, from the Democratic Party and if you have a firm preference tell us who and why. We are encouraging comments from more readers to diversify the voices expressed in this blog.

NM Congressional Delegation Brings Home $30M to Reimburse Local Jurisdictions Impacted by the Relief Effort: Kudos to Them

U.S. Senators Tom Udall (D-N.M.) and Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.) announced that the Senate agreement on border humanitarian assistance includes $30 million in reimbursement funds for localities and non-gU.S. Sen. Tom Udallovernmental organizations (NGOs) in New Mexico and elsewhere that are providing much-needed humanitarian relief to asylum seekers.

In May, the full New Mexico delegation – Udall and Heinrich and U.S. Representatives Ben Ray Luján, Xochitl Torres Small, and Deb Haaland – wrote to the leadership of the Senate and House Appropriations Committees requesting reimbursement in light of the release of thousands of asylum seekers into New Mexico, and the subsequent strain on local resources.

“I am proud to have worked alongside the New Mexico delegation to secure this urgently-needed funding for New Mexico communities in this Senate agreement, and will be working diligently to get it over the finish line,” said Udall, a senior member of the Senate Appropriations Committee who was in Las Cruces recently meeting with community leaders and volunteers helping asylum seekers.

A Look Back At US Fossil Fuel Subsidies, Encroaching Fascism and How to Counter It, Trump’s Bold Plan for Addressing Poverty & Ta-Nehesi Coates and Mitch McConnell on Reparations

As is our practice each Monday, we present brief summaries of our posts from the last week along with links to each. I usually offer recommendations, as well. I would say that the article on encroaching fascism in America is both incredibly important and very well written…that isn’t pat on my back as the post is mostly comprised of excerpts from an incredible article by Henry A. Giroux after which I offer a strategy that we may want to implement here in NM to help counter what is becoming a truly frightening combination of warning signs. Did you note that Trump is now merrily tweeting lawn signs for Trump 2040. The man is dangerous and we need to take it seriously. I’d also recommend the last post listed below, Sunday’s video-based piece featuring Ta-Nehesi Coates and his powerful testimony on reparations before the US Congress. In that post we also included a link to a page that houses eight of Coates’ most important essays, including A Letter to My Son, which is gut wrenchingly eloquent and an extended essay describing the justification for reparations. For those who are new to the reparations issue there is also a background piece explaining the reasons for developing some form of reparations for African Americans, a policy that should be extended to cover indigenous communities, as well. Read on.

The US Spends Ten Times As Much on Fossil Fuel Subsidies As It Does on Public Education–Truly An Ethics Lesson

Thursday, June 20. The ongoing theme in this blog has been how misinformation is used to dissuade the public on multiple critical issues. Today, we examine how Koch-funded talking heads parrot false information about how NM extremists are getting rich advocating for a transition to renewables. We present an excellent op-ed calling out the Koch-funded nonsense and then a link to the article on fossil fuel subsidies. If a budget is a moral document, what does it say about us that we spend ten times as much of our tax dollars to prop up an industry that is failing for economic reasons and that is the leading contributor to climate catastrophe.  Click here to read the full post.

Truthout Points to How Perilously Close We Are to Fascism and Points to How We Can Find a Path to Liberation

Friday, June 21“We can have democracy in this country, or we can have great wealth concentrated in the hands of the few, but we can’t have both.” —Supreme Court Justice Louis D. Brandeis. On Friday, we examined Henry A. Giroux’s brilliantly written piece on how the concentration of wealth and power, and dismissal of facts, science, and honesty, is leading us into very dangerous territory. Make no mistake about it. This is a tough one to read, not because it is densely complex text. It is an easy read, so very well written and so important. But be prepared to be alarmed. An absolute must read.  Click here to read the full post.

Trump’s Bold Plan for Addressing Poverty in America

Saturday, June 22.  We’ve written often about bold plans for addressing poverty, but they’ve always focused on strategies to build the capacity or wealth of  those living in poverty. Trump has another idea, one that amounts to a doctor calling a cancer a cold and claiming a cure. We also include a short discussion of the “contributions” made by Nobel Laureate James McGill Buchanan, a Koch-funded economist who quietly reshaped America and the right wing efforts to squash dissent and take over our government. Click here to read the full post.

Ta-Nehesi Coates Responds to McConnell’s Tone Deaf Comments on Reparations in Six Riveting Minutes Before Congress

Sunday, June 23.  We continued our new tradition of Sunday at the Movies with another double feature that combined require only two 7 minutes and 30 seconds to view. First we offered up one minute of McConnell making a fool of himself yet again followed by one of the more poignant justifications for reparations I’ve ever heard. Ta-Nehesi Coates’ passionate, thoughtful and detailed explication of the history of black oppression made clear that that oppression did not end with the Emancipation Proclamation or civil rights movement and that the damage caused by centuries of racism is not magically healed by electing an African American president.. Some may be coming to the reparations movement for the first time, so we provided a link to short article about the rationale for reparations.  Some others may not have been familiar with Ta-Nehesi Coates, so a link to a Medium page with his eight most read essays is provided. For those of you not familiar with either reparations or Ta-Nehesi Coates, this is an important post to read and save. You may well want to return to read more from Coates. He is one of the most important writers in our time. Click here to review the two short videos and to find out more about Ta-Nehesi Coates.  

In solidarity,

Paul & Roxanne




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3 replies

  1. You may have missed the news that our Congressional delegation is attempting to bring home another $150 million in federal dollars for Aamodt bringing the federal total to $256 million. If the state and county will kick in their share, the grand total will come to $421 million and counting.

    The 11,000 people in the Pojoaque Basin wonder what we have done to deserve this largess — which works out to about $38,000 per person. We would be happy to divert these funds to “localities and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) in New Mexico and elsewhere that are providing much-needed humanitarian relief to asylum seekers.”

  2. I’ve been very hesitant to engage in the reparations discussion, especially since I don’t have the time right now to read all the supporting documents and research. Also, replying to McConnell is too easy since, in my view, he is pure evil. What’s more he is a very effective evil since he has mastered the political tactics that got him to where he is. That this country was founded with an imbedded racist ideology is not in dispute. Nor can any sane person not be repelled by the continuing horrors visited by the ruling hierarchies on all the “out” groups throughout our national history. This starts with the indigenous population, continues with black slaves, and includes various immigrant groups at different times in history.

    Off the top of my head I would say that the reparations issue is a distraction and of benefit to the Republican party. It is almost a gift to them. My (admittedly hasty) analysis is that “reparations” is a negative framing word–remember “death panels”–that will engage, motivate, and emotionalize a part of the population to support even more strongly Republican candidates. A good chunk of this population is not fundamentally racist. They can be persuaded by sound populist ideas, some of which Sanders has been proposing for many years. Put yourself in the skin of a poor white person who, because of the depraved and parasitical economic policies of the past 40 years, by BOTH national parties, has seen their life deteriorate to a desperate level. Little hope, which leads to anger and despair. Which leads to supporting people like Trump (and McConnell). “Why should that black person get something for nothing, when me and my family have been suffering as much”. And again, if reparations were a viable political option, which it isn’t, the very first in line in this country should be the native populations which were cheated and slaughtered from the arrival of the very first European settlers.

    Massive historical injustices need to be acknowledged, I agree 100%. The remedies, however, are to be found in rigorously enforcing existing civil rights laws, in enacting even stronger equality laws, and, perhaps most importantly, with a thorough restructuring of the economy that channels money to the poorest and most neglected parts of the populace–which is maybe 60-70% of the total, in my opinion.

  3. I hope that Tulsi Gabbord gets some of the spotlight at the debates. She is one of the very few candidates that is anti war. She has gotten virtually no media coverage due to her stance. The effect of our military industrial complex on Global Warming is profound.


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