Thursday, April 14, 2011

Memphis Coffee Party Progressives Joins US Uncut's Movement to Make Corporate Tax Dodgers Pay UPp

Memphis Coffee Party Progressives Joins US Uncut's Growing Movement to Make Corporate Tax Dodgers Pay Up

A group of concerned citizens from Memphis are joining US Uncut groups in more than 50 U.S. cities, with a planned protest at the corner of Poplar and Highland on Saturday (April 16th), to make the connection between corporate tax dodging and the budget cuts in Tennessee.

Activists from Memphis Coffee Party Progressives and Memphis Uncut will confront corporations like FedEx, GE, Exxon & Bank of America over their failure to pay their fair share while citizens of Tennessee suffer huge budget cuts at both the federal and state levels. Inspired by national and international protests to hold corporate tax cheats accountable, the protest will creatively call out these corporations for contributing to budget cuts.

Corporate tax cheats are bankrupting America. Many of America’s largest corporations are making profits in America but barely paying taxes – if at all – due to overseas tax haven abuse and other tax loopholes. Memphis Uncut is a group of citizens who pay their fair share, organized to show corporate tax cheats that there will be consequences for their actions.


• Offshore tax havens cost U.S. taxpayers $100 billion per year. That shortfall costs the average taxpayer $500 a year. (U.S. Senate subcommittee on investigations)

• Two-thirds of US corporations paid no federal income taxes at some point between 1998 to 2005. (Government Accountability Office)

• States collectively face another $100 billion budget gap for FY 2012. Over the next decade, President Obama has proposed nearly $1 trillion in social program cuts; House Republicans recently unveiled a plan to slash $4 trillion, with cuts largely to social safety nets such as Medicare and education. [Center for Budget and Policy Priorities, New York Times]

WHAT: Memphis UNCUT/Tax Protest

WHEN: Saturday, April 16th, 11 AM

WHERE: Poplar & Highland

Coffee Party Progressives

Monday, April 11, 2011

The Progressive Budget Plan: Tax the Rich, End the Wars, Invest in Jobs

House progressives offer budget plan: Tax the rich, end the wars, slash oil subsidies, invest in jobs

Liberal Dems claim the plan eliminates deficit by 2021
WASHINGTON – As the focus on Capitol Hill shifts [1] to America's long-run fiscal woes, Congressional progressives are one step ahead of the White House and Democratic leaders in offering a counter-proposal to the House GOP approach.
The broad sketch proposes to end the Bush-era tax cuts on high income earners, enact a surtax on millionaires and billionaires, increase the the estate tax and eliminate corporate tax loopholes and subsidies for oil and coal companies. It also aims to create a public health insurance option, end the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and invest $1.45 trillion in "job creation," energy, housing and education programs.
The revenue-heavy proposal [2] (PDF) stands in stark contrast to the spending cuts-oriented plan put forth by House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-WI) -- and championed by GOP leaders [3] -- that slashes $6 trillion in federal programs (including Medicare and Medicaid) while significantly reducing taxes for wealthy Americans and corporations.
"This budget is transparent, straightforward and realistic about where we are in America right now," Rep. Raul Grijalva (D-AZ), co-chair of the progressive caucus, told Raw Story. "The Ryan plan, for all the credit it gets for thinking big, doesn’t reflect the reality of the American economy. It destroys the successful programs that made this country strong, especially Medicare and education, and doesn't even try to explain how it creates jobs. It reflects a faith that making government disappear will somehow create prosperity."
The plan is a nonstarter in the GOP-led House and would have a hard time winning over more than a handful of Democrats in the Senate. But Grijalva and his progressive caucus co-chair Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN) wrote a letter urging Rep. Chris Van Hollen (D-MD), the top Democrat on the budget committee, to consider their ideas in the Democratic counter-offer this week.
In contrast to the Ryan plan, which the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office says will eliminate the deficit by 2040 [4], the progressive proposal -- which its authors have dubbed the "People's Budget" -- promises to yield surpluses by 2021, though it doesn't provide numbers to back the claim.
"We need an alternative that actually creates jobs, closes corporate tax loopholes, ends wasteful subsidies, protects Medicare and education, and puts this country back on the right track," Grijalva said. "We believe the American people deserve a choice, and that’s what we intend to give them."
While the Ryan proposal is likely to pass the GOP-led House when it's taken up this week, the progressive blueprint is highly unlikely to reflect the official Democratic opening bid. President Barack Obama is poised to unveil his fiscal 2012 budget [5] Wednesday, and it's believed to seek spending cuts while returning high-income tax rates to Clinton-era levels.
Both parties agree on the need to reduce the nation's massive long-term deficits. And the progressive leaders framed their proposal in terms of who will pick up the tab: the wealthy, or struggling Americans. The GOP proposal, they argue, would "tak[e] trillions of dollars from the pockets of the middle class and giv[e] ever more generous windfalls to millionaires and large corporations."
Republicans vociferously oppose increasing taxes -- including on the wealthiest earners and corporations -- warning that doing so would hamper the economic recovery. America's budget problems, they argue, are caused by excessive spending as opposed to a revenue shortage.
URL to article:
URLs in this post:
[1] shifts:
[2] revenue-heavy proposal:
[3] championed by GOP leaders:
[4] eliminate the deficit by 2040:
[5] poised to unveil his fiscal 2012 budget:

Monday, April 4, 2011

43rd Annual March Honoring MLK in Memphis April 4 2011

About 500 people representing several unions join the Memphis AFSCME Local to honor Dr. Martin Luther King on the 43rd Anniversary of his murder in Memphis Tennessee April 4, 1968.

MLK came to Memphis to stand WITH public workers and unions representing sanitation workers in Memphis.  It was his last stand for justice and equality.

Friday, April 1, 2011

Tea Party Tries to Kill Medicare in Tennessee!

If the Tea Party has it's way,  Medicare Could Be Taken Over by TennCare!

On April 5, this Tuesday morning, the House Health and Human Resources sub-committee will vote on House Bill 0369, Health Care Compact, putting TennCare in charge of your Medicare. In a Compact there are no guarantees of benefits and coverage. It comes with a lick and a promise. "We have seen those promises before," says Beth Uselton, "and over 300,000 Tennesseans lost their coverage under Governor Bredesen."

If passed by the sub-committee and by the full House of Representatives, the bill would require Tennessee to join the Health Care Compact.  The Compact would withdraw Tennessee from all federal health care programs, including Medicare, and put TennCare in charge.
Call members of the House Health Sub-committee
- this weekend and again on Monday - 
Ask them to vote against the Compact bill
State Legislators leave Nashville on Thursday at noon and return on Monday afternoon. Members of the House sub-committee need to hear from you. Click here for talking points. Call toll free. Click here to get a list of legislators to call.
Read the fiscal note about Medicare by clicking this picture.
"Good God, Tennessee can't even manage TennCare, how do they think they can manage the rest? Please oh please leave my medicare alone!"
That is a comment left by a reader of the Knoxville News-Sentinal after the paper ran this article explaining the bill and its effect in Tennessee. The reader has cause for concern. If this bill is passed, TennCare would take over the administration of Medicare for over one million seniors and people with disabilities in Tennessee. 
What is the Health Care Compact?
Interstate compacts create multi-state agreements to address problems such as transportation issues, water rights or environmental protection.  Compact agreements, which have to be passed by state legislatures, then approved by Congress and signed by the President, override federal law.
Proponents of the state Health Care Compact are using it as a political strategy to try and opt out of the new federal health care law and exempt Tennessee from the requirements of it, including the protections, benefits and new rights to health care afforded to Tennesseans.  This strategy is being backed by the Tea Party and pushed by a new front group, the Health Care Compact Alliance.

The TRUE story of the Tea Party