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Posts tagged with 'white house'

Weekly Pulse: White House Takes Offensive Against Health Care Repeal

Posted Jan 19, 2011 @ 12:03 pm by
Filed under: Health Care     Bookmark and Share

Creative Commons, Flicker, anolobbBy Lindsay Beyerstein, Media Consortium blogger

This week, House Republicans will hold a vote to repeal the Affordable Care Act. The bill is expected to pass the House, where the GOP holds a majority, but stall in the Democratic-controlled Senate. In the meantime, the symbolic vote is giving both Republicans and Democrats a pretext to publicly rehash their views on the legislation.

At AlterNet, Faiz Shakir and colleagues point out that repealing health care reform would cost the federal government an additional $320 billion over the next decade, according to the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office. The authors also note that despite Republican campaign promises to “repeal and replace” the law, their bill contains no replacement plan. Health care reform protects Americans with preexisting conditions from some forms discrimination by insurers. At least half of all Americans under the age of 65 could be construed as having a preexisting condition. No wonder only 1 in 4 Americans support repeal, according to an Associated Press-GfK poll released on Monday.

Perhaps that explains, as Paul Waldman reports at TAPPED, why the White House is vigorously defending health care reform. The Obama administration is making full use of the aforementioned statistics from The Department Health and Human Services on the percentage of Americans who have preexisting conditions:

As the House prepares to vote on the “Repeal the Puppy-Strangling Job-Vivisecting O-Commie-Care Act,” or whatever they’re now calling it, the White House and its allies actually seem to have their act together when it comes to fighting this war for public opinion. The latest is an analysis from the Department of Health and Human Services on just how many people have pre-existing conditions, and thus will be protected from denials of health insurance when the Affordable Care Act goes fully into effect in 2014

Republicans are fuming that Democrats are “politicizing” a policy debate by bringing up the uncomfortable fact that, if the GOP’s repeal plan became law, millions of people could lose their health insurance. As Waldman points out, the high incidence of preexisting conditions is an argument for a universal mandate. It’s impossible to insure people with known health problems at an affordable cost unless they share the risk with healthier policy-holders. Hence the need for a mandate.

Anti-choice at the end of life

In The Nation, Ann Neumann explains how anti-choice leaders fought to re-eliminate free end-of-life counseling for seniors under Medicare. The provision was taken out of the health care reform bill but briefly reinstated by Department of Health and Social Services before being rescinded again by HHS amid false allegations by anti-choice groups, including The Family Research Council, that the government was promulgating euthanasia for the elderly.

As seen on TV

The Kansas-based anti-choice group Operation Rescue is lashing out at the Iowa Board of Medicine for dismissing their complaint against Dr. Linda Haskell, Lynda Waddington reports in The Iowa Independent. Dr. Haskell attracted the ire of anti-choicers for using telemedicine to help doctors provide abortion care. The board investigated Operation Rescue’s allegations, which it cannot discuss or even acknowledge, but found no basis for sanctions against Haskell. Iowa medical authorities said they were still deliberating about the rules for telemedicine in general.

Salon retracts RFK vaccine story

Online news magazine Salon.com has retracted a 2005 article by Robert Kennedy, Jr. alleging a link between childhood vaccines and autism, Kristina Chew reports at Care2. The article leaned heavily on now discredited research by Dr. Andrew Wakefield. His research had been discredited for some time, but only recently did an investigative journalist reveal that Wakefield skewed his data as part of an elaborate scam to profit from a lawsuit against vaccine makers.

This post features links to the best independent, progressive reporting about health care by members of The Media Consortium. It is free to reprint. Visit the Pulse for a complete list of articles on health care reform, or follow us on Twitter. And for the best progressive reporting on critical economy, environment, health care and immigration issues, check out The Audit, The Mulch, and The Diaspora. This is a project of The Media Consortium, a network of leading independent media outlets.

Weekly Audit: Tax Cuts for the Rich Extended

Posted Dec 7, 2010 @ 12:53 pm by
Filed under: Economy     Bookmark and Share

By Lindsay Beyerstein,  Media Consortium Blogger

Congressional Republicans and the White House  struck an agreement in principle on Monday night to extend all the Bush tax cuts for 2 more years in exchange for extending unemployment benefits. The GOP agreed to the so-called “Lincoln-Kyl compromise” a partial 2-year extension of the Bush estate tax cuts on estates worth over $5 million. If the deal had not been struck, estate taxes on estates over $5 million would have gone back up from 0% to the pre-cut rate of 55%. Instead, the rate will be 35% for the next 2 years.

The GOP also agreed to a short-term “stimulative” 2 percentage-point cut off the 6.2% payroll tax we all pay on income up to $106,800. The good news is that a payroll tax holiday will provide the most noticeable tax relief to low- and middle-income Americans. The bad news is that payroll taxes fund Social Security, so cutting the tax means starving a program that most directly benefits average people. Social Security is not in crisis yet, but steps like these could push the program into worse financial straights where significant benefit cuts become inevitable. It’s almost as if the GOP, having failed to spark panic about an as-yet non-existent Social Security crisis, is determined to engineer one.

All these gimmes for the rich were the price of a partial extension of unemployment benefits. The stakes couldn’t have been higher. If Congress had failed to act, 2 million people stood to lose their benefits this month and another 7 million would have run out before the end of next year, reports Andy Kroll of Mother Jones.

Meanwhile, unemployment continues to rise. The economy only added 39,000 jobs in November when analysts were expecting about 150,000. “At the beginning, some people just thought it was a printing error,” said reporter Motoko Rich on the New York Times‘ weekly business podcast. The overall unemployment rate climbed to 9.8%.

At ColorLines, Kai Wright argues that the time has come for President Obama to seize the opportunity to debunk conservatives’ bad faith arguments for tax cuts above all else:

At the same time, the anti-government crowd’s political hand—if forced—has never been weaker. A depressingly large number of middle-class and working-class Americans now know all too well what economists have long understood: You get a great deal more economic bang out of keeping lots of people from becoming destitute than you do by helping a few people horde wealth. People remain enraged about the no-strings-attached bank bailout, for instance, because they intuitively understand its ramifications. Wall Street is now enjoying a narrow, taxpayer-financed recovery while unemployment, hunger and poverty all continue climbing through the former middle class.

Extending UI makes sense

Tim Fernholtz of TAPPED tackles some of the bad arguments against extending unemployment insurance. Economist Greg Mankiw claims that extending unemployment insurance is just a surreptitious ploy to redistribute income to the poor from the wealthy. Actually, as Fernholtz points out, the point of a UI safety net is to prevent people, 3 million of them in 2009, from becoming poor in the first place. Poverty is very expensive for society at large. If we can keep the unemployed in their homes, spending their benefits in their communities, we can keep the socially corrosive effects of poverty at bay until the economy improves. The social costs of child poverty alone have been estimated at $500 billion a year, Fernholtz notes. The deeper we allow people to sink into poverty, the more difficult it will be for the economy to rebound. On this view, UI is a shared investment in a well-ordered society, not just a lifeline for jobless families.

Why corporate tax cuts won’t create jobs

Jack Rasmus of Working In These Times explains why tax cuts will not create jobs. Simply put, banks and big companies are sitting on over a trillion dollars. Among the nation’s biggest banks, lending to small and medium size businesses, the engines of job creation, has dwindled over 2009 and 2010. America’s biggest companies are sitting on a hoard of $1.84 trillion dollars, which they are not investing in job-creating projects. The Deficit Commission recommended slashing corporate taxes, ostensibly to spur investment and job creation, which would ultimately generate taxable income to help balance the budget. As Rasmus points out, this wishful thinking is predicated upon the assumption that if only corporations had more money, they would invest it to create jobs. The fact that companies are already sitting on huge piles of cash suggests that shoveling more moolah on the pile won’t change the basic dynamic. Perhaps companies are waiting to invest because they know that consumers aren’t keen to buy goods and services when they are unemployed or fearing job loss.

Economic disobedience

At In These Times, Andrew Oxford interviews sociologist Lisa Dodson about her new book on getting by in the low-wage economy. Her research shows that as economic instability mounts, many Americans are quietly taking matters into their own hands:

To understand how fair-minded people survive in an unfair economy, Dodson interviewed hundreds of low-wage workers and their employers across the country, examining what she terms the “economic disobedience” now pervasive in the low-wage sector. From a supervisor padding paychecks to a grocer sending food home with his employees, these acts of disobedience form the subject of her latest book, The Moral Underground: How Ordinary Americans Subvert an Unfair Economy.

Winner-take all economy

In an interview with Democracy Now!, Yale political science profesor and  Jacob Hacker explains why the Deficit Commission has it all wrong when it comes to tax cuts vs. unemployment benefits.

Hacker studies inequality. He has written a book on how the richest Americans cornered an unprecedented share of the country’s wealth for themselves over the past three decades. The richest Americans have never been in a better position to help the country grapple with the deficit. Yet, as Hacker points out, the Deficit Commission wants to balance the budget on the backs of middle- and lower-income Americans by cutting spending on programs that disproportionately benefit working people and readjusting the tax code to make it even more favorable to the rich.

This post features links to the best independent, progressive reporting about the economy by members of The Media Consortium. It is free to reprint. Visit the Audit for a complete list of articles on economic issues, or follow us on Twitter. And for the best progressive reporting on critical economy, environment, health care and immigration issues, check out The Mulch, The Pulse and The Diaspora. This is a project of The Media Consortium, a network of leading independent media outlets.

Weekly Mulch: Would You Eat Bugs to Fight Climate Change?

Posted Sep 17, 2010 @ 11:10 am by
Filed under: Sustain     Bookmark and Share

By Sarah Laskow, Media Consortium Blogger

Flickr, Michael Sarver, Creative Commons LicenseMaybe it’s time for environmentalists prioritize do-it-yourself climate fixes instead of looking to politicians. There are all sorts of options, including, for those dedicated enough, switching to an insect-based diet, as Change.org reports.

But in the private sector, inventors, corporations, and small businesses — farmers in particular — are finding more palatable ways to scale down their environmental impact. In short, politicians aren’t the only ones with the power to make high-profile statements and strong choices on climate change.

No solar on the White House

Environmental crusader Bill McKibben had already given up on Congress; now the White House has disappointed, too. McKibben and other leaders in the climate change movement are eschewing lobbying on legislation in favor of pushing for more visible, direct action on climate issues. To that end, McKibben, along with three students, asked the White House last week to reinstall one of Jimmy Carter’s solar panels on the roof. The answer was no. (more…)

Weekly Mulch: Vermilion 380 Explosion Reignites Drilling Fears

Posted Sep 3, 2010 @ 10:59 am by
Filed under: Sustain     Bookmark and Share

by Sarah Laskow, Media Consortium blogger

Flickr, k++, Creative Commons LicenseOn Thursday, a manageable explosion on a Gulf Coast oil rig reignited fears founded by the BP spill and revived calls for a reassessment of the country’s drilling policies.

Just before 9 a.m. Thursday morning, the Vermilion Oil Rig 380 exploded. Unlike the Deepwater Horizon rig, this one was located in shallow waters. By late afternoon, a sheen of oil had been spotted, spreading a mile long from the burning rig; but by Friday morning the Coast Guard was saying the that was a mistake—there was no sheen.

Mariner Energy, the company that owns the well, said the fire burned off the oil used to power the well and was out by 3 p.m. The rig had seven actively producing oil wells, but they were quickly shut off after the fire began.

Media coverage and the spill

After more than four months of worry over the BP oil spill, the entire political apparatus—politicians and journalists, activists and lobbyists—shot into action at the news of the fire.

In April, when the Deepwater Horizon rig exploded, the media was slow to realize how serious a disaster the explosion represented. (The Mulch was as guilty as anyone else: the rig exploded April 20, but on April 23, this column featured the Cochabamba climate conference.) BP’s initial estimates of the spill’s volume, later increased by thousands of barrels per day, encouraged this impression. (more…)

Weekly Mulch: What’s Missing from the New Clean Energy Agenda?

Posted Feb 5, 2010 @ 11:46 am by
Filed under: Sustain     Bookmark and Share

By Sarah Laskow, Media Consortium Blogger

Photo courtest of Flickr user Joost J. Bakker IJmuiden via Creative CommonsNuclear power, biofuels, clean coal: These are the Obama administration’s answers to climate change. The 2011 budget, released this week, promised new loans for the construction of nuclear power plants, and on Wednesday the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), White House, and other departments detailed steps to encourage ethanol and clean coal production.

These initiatives may garner support from conservatives, but their ascendancy comes at a price. Support for renewable fuel sources, like wind and solar, has dwindled. President Barack Obama did encourage Senate Democrats to pass a climate change bill, but some moderates are bucking the cap-and-trade provisions that could tamp down carbon emissions. Those moderates are pushing for legislation that leaves carbon caps out entirely. (more…)

Weekly Mulch: Can the Green Agenda Progress Without Van Jones?

Posted Sep 11, 2009 @ 10:20 am by
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By Raquel Brown, Media Consortium Blogger

Green jobs czar and racial justice advocate Van Jones resigned from his position as environmental adviser to the White House over Labor Day weekend. Many believe that Jones’ departure is a significant setback in environmental policy, racial equity, and another reminder that pundits can destroy credibility with very little ammunition in today’s political climate. Fox News host Glenn Beck and several Republican Congressmen criticized Jones for “controversial” past activism and called for him to step down. Jones was particularly smeared for signing a petition that requested more information on the 9/11 attacks and a derogatory comment toward Republicans, both of which he apologized for publicly.

Jones’ commitment to a sustainable environment and a green economy was especially influential on progressive youth. Kristina Rizga of Wiretap explains that Jones’ vision really resonated with young people from marginalized communities and encouraged them to get involved. Additionally, Jones played a key role in ensuring that underprivileged Americans reaped the benefits of clean energy investments and green jobs training initiatives in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.

“Jones—the first African-American to write a best-selling environmental book—helped inspire these hard-to-reach communities. It’s hard to think of another individual on the Hill who spent as much time talking and listening to disenfranchised youth,” Rizga writes.

But would Jones still have his job if the Obama administration had stood up for him? In a strong piece for The Nation, John Nichols argues that Obama succumbed to the media, and “in so doing, allowed Glenn Beck to define the administration.” Jones signified that Obama was dedicated to green jobs and protecting the environment. Without Jones, however, those objectives may never be realized.

“This won’t make the Obama presidency stronger; nor will it position the president to work more effectively with Congress on issues such as health care reform – let alone “green jobs” initiatives,” says Nichols.

Air America’s Beau Friedlander calls Jones’ resignation an example of “mutually assured distraction;” another attempt for partisans to take down their opponents’ point man over a non-issue. This infantile and baseless behavior shifts lawmakers attention away from important issues at hand, such as the climate change bill, economic recovery and health care reform. Friedlander characterizes Van Jones as someone who  is “100% committed to creating the conditions for an improvement in society. He is dedicated to progress, and solution-oriented activism. He is a team player. He knows how to follow the leader, and how to be the leader.”

While many see his departure as a deep loss, Don Hazen of AlterNet has “5 Reasons Why Van Jones and Progressives are Better Off with Jones Out of the White House.” First, Jones was an unsung hero for the environment and progressive activism. Now, he is a household name, and has increased his visibility and influence. Second, Hazen argues that Jones’ position limited his scope of influence. By stepping down, Jones was rescued from obscurity. Third, Jones can now help lead and shape the progressive movement. Fourth, Jones is now free to express his views and speak the truth, something he was criticized for while in the White House. And lastly, Jones can now provide real vision, explain his ideas and mobilize people to curb climate change. Ultimately, Jones’ fame will outshine any controversy or scandal. Hazen remains confident that this situation will only make Jones a stronger and more effective leader.

Finally, to commemorate the anniversary of the 9/11 attacks today, President Obama called for a national day of service on major legislative issues. Wiretap’s Jamilah King notes that environmental organizations like Green for All and Green the Block are sponsoring events that promote green jobs and climate justice.

The message is clear: Van Jones’ resignation will not intimidate us from working towards important environmental endeavors. We must use this “opportunity to reinvigorate the movement toward equitable and economically sustainable green jobs.”

This post features links to the best independent, progressive reporting about the environment and is free to reprint. Visit Sustain.NewsLadder.net for a complete list of articles on the environment and sustainability, or follow us on Twitter. And for the best progressive reporting on critical economy, health, and immigration issues, check out Economy.NewsLadder.net, Healthcare.NewsLadder.net and Immigration.newsladder.net.

This is a project of The Media Consortium, a network of 50 leading independent media outlets, and was created by NewsLadder.

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Weekly Immigration Wire: DIY Immigration Reform

Posted Sep 3, 2009 @ 10:43 am by
Filed under: Immigration     Bookmark and Share

By Nezua, TMC Mediawire Blogger

Many immigration reform activists feel stymied and frustrated by the Obama Administration’s approach to immigration. Because the administration has not clearly denounced the racially-based violence and sentiment fueled by groups like FAIR and pundits like Lou Dobbs, it appears to be ignoring the individuals in need and siding with the powerful players, like the detention industry, or grossly negligent lawmen like Sheriff Joe Arpaio.

So what can an advocate, activist, or even a conscientious citizen do to make a difference during this period of government inaction? Have hope and take action yourself! As Eric Ward of Alternet writes in “Seven Days to Beat Anti-Immigrant Bigotry,” “You can take a bite out of bigotry in less than five minutes a day!”

Ward’s essay helps replace a potentially overwhelming sense of frustration with concrete, attainable and clearly defined actions. He put it together because a friend wrote him in sheer frustration, and asked him what she could do—without having a whole lot of time on her hands. She works 60 hours a week as a florist, but was determined nonetheless: “I don’t want these bigots to have the last word.”

The Washington Independent’s Daphne Eviatar reports that 521 different civil rights and advocacy groups sent a letter urging the President to “immediately terminate” the infamous 287(g) program, which deputizes local police to carry out federal immigration duties. The program is currently being investigated by the Department of Justice for racial profiling and civil rights violations. This is great news! As we reported in the August 20th Wire, only a few voices were speaking out against postponing immigration reform. Now there are many.

RaceWire reports on the coalition of “immigrant, racial justice and civil rights advocacy groups” that have signed on to the letter, and describes the 287(g) program as a “disturbing hallmark of the Bush administration’s law-and-order approach.” Michelle Chen describes ground zero for 287(g)’s implementation—Arizona’s Maricopa County, where Sheriff Joe Arpaio is at the helm—as a “warzone.”

The letter is a “gauntlet” and a “long overdue test” for the Obama adminstration. Activists and advocates need a sign, Chen writes, that the White House is serious about immigration reform, and not just further incarceration and penalty.

Advocacy groups aren’t the only ones uniting in this struggle, as Alternet makes clear in “Asian Americans Mobilize for Immigration Reform.” Something is different about this moment. “For the first time in the nation’s history,” writes Vivian Po, “Asian American and Pacific Islander [API] groups came together this week to call for comprehensive immigration reform.”

While immigration is often focused on Latinos, “Asian Americans also want to activate their network and become involved,” said Tuyet Duong, senior staff attorney of Asian American Justice Center (AAJC). The campaign used new media such as text-messaging campaigns and Asian American blogs, attracting many younger voters. “This week’s series of collective actions is the beginning of a larger movement for immigration reform,” say API immigrant rights groups.

Last week’s Wire touched on the overlap between health care and immigration reform. One in three Latinos are uninsured, as New America Media’s Odette Keeley reports. Keeley speaks with Pilar Marrero, Political Editor for La Opinion about “the scapegoating of undocumented immigrants during the health care [debate]” and “the possible ramifications of these attacks on the debate for immigration reform.” Of special note are some practical tips for those who have undocumented family members and experience a medical emergency.

While we are discussing physical injury and the uninsured, we should dwell on The Dark Side of Dairies,” at High Country News. It may as well have been titled “Got Justice?” Rebecca Clarren reports on an immigrant worker who was kicked by a cow while at work, and now has a steel plate in his face. “Gustavo,” a husband and father of three, is afraid to use his own name, but gives a first hand account of the dangers and dark side of helping the U.S. dairy system move.

Unprotected and invisible, the majority of the Western United States’ nearly 50,000 dairy workers are undocumented. But even though workers are killed by “tractor accidents, suffocated by falling hay bales, crushed by charging cows and bulls and asphyxiated by gases from manure lagoons and corn silage,” as Marc Schenker, director of the Western Center for Agricultural Safety and Health puts it, “If you’re undocumented, you won’t complain.”

How can a nation profit and subsist upon the efforts of workers who suffer like this? It’s a skewed, postcolonialist view that lets one group of people profit off the pain of others.

And the U.S. isn’t alone. The American Prospect’s “Chicken Little Goes to Europe” clearly delineates that frame of mind. Stephen Holmes offers a rejoinder to the fears some in Europe have about the growing Muslim population within their borders. The fearmongering there mirrors anti-immigrant sentiment in the U.S. Simply replace “Muslim” with “Mexican.” Scapegoating immigrants who change the culture to which they contribute is not a new phenomenon. Neither, however, is the ability to rise above these base reflexes and give voice and action to our better natures.


This post features links to the best independent, progressive reporting about immigration and is free to reprint. Visit Immigration.NewsLadder.net for a complete list of articles on immigration, or follow us on Twitter. And for the best progressive reporting on critical economy and health issues, check out Economy.NewsLadder.net and Healthcare.NewsLadder.net. This is a project of The Media Consortium, a network of 50 leading independent media outlets, and was created by NewsLadder.

Weekly Immigration Wire: Silence Strengthens Opposition

Posted Aug 20, 2009 @ 10:39 am by
Filed under: Immigration, Uncategorized     Bookmark and Share

By Nezua, TMC Mediawire Blogger

President Obama is citing the Healthcare debate as a reason for postponing immigration reform until 2010. But in the interim, the White House is laying the groundwork for an enforcement agenda by expanding programs such as 287(g), Secure Communities and e-Verify, amidst a growing matrix of detention centers. Anti-immigration factions are taking advantage of the lull in legislative action to push their own agenda.

The Progressive takes the unequivocal stand that “President Obama is wrong to postpone immigration reform.” Author Ed Morales makes it clear that while healthcare and economic issues are “understandably urgent,” the choice to delay reform “de-prioritizes” people who have paid their taxes but have not been given a path to citizenship.

The problem is, immigration reform and healthcare reform are inextricably connected. WireTap cites a central tenant of healthcare reform’s “artificially amplified ‘public’ opposition” to immigration, as reported by the Los Angeles Times: It’s “the notion that ‘Congress would give illegal immigrants health insurance at taxpayer expense.’”

Is the racially charged core of this “chameleon colored outrage” being purposefully left out of the general dialogue? The ugly facts are that a “third of all ‘Hispanics’ in the U.S., almost half of the undocumented, and a fifth of African Americans” lack health insurance today. And yet, only “one in eight whites” lack health care.

After all, “Not all immigrants are alike.” New America Media’s David Hayes-Bautista compares the experiences of two immigrants named Jean-Claude and Juan Carlos. Hayes-Bautista effectively illustrates the Good Immigrant/Bad Immigrant paradigm and asks “Why do some immigrants move quickly and swiftly up the educational and professional ladder, while others appear to remain stymied at the bottom?” Ultimately, “both segments of immigrants deserve to be included in the future healthcare system that their presence will help to fund.”

But some clearly don’t think with such a progressive bent, as the New Mexico Independent reports. Instead of trying to bring greater truth to the entire discussion, anti-immigrant factions are “using [healthcare reform] to whip up fear and anger toward immigrants,” unsurprisingly claiming that they are “a costly and burdensome drain on any taxpayer-supported U.S. health care system.”

At a Portsmouth, New Hampshire town hall where the crowd awaited the President’s arrival, one “white-bearded protestor” suggested murder as a solution for “illegals.” (Video via the Young Turks)

Judging from the agitated protestor’s words, he, like others, views immigration through a fearful zero sum scarcity model in which one person’s well-being equals another person’s loss. There are better ways to approach this issue. New America Media reports on a more enlightened approach being employed in New Mexico. The Las Cruces-based Colonias Development Council (CDC), along with other community groups, recently held a series of meetings that discussed “living and working conditions in underdeveloped border-area communities,” but filtered the conversation “through the lens of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights adopted by the General Assembly of the United Nations back in 1948.” Such a lens introduces not just political concerns, but concerns related to the “guarantees of healthcare, education, employment, and housing” as human rights.

Migrants, like those of the CDC, are exploring the truly progressive ideas that proclaim all humans deserving of certain rights. And when the White House takes immigration reform off the radar with one hand and clamps down punitively with the other, it sends a signal to companies like Yum! brands, which are implementing illegal policies. In These Times‘ Robin Peterson tells the story of a very unhappy KFC workforce where “No Match” letters have resulted in many lost jobs. No Match letters were introduced by the Bush administration. The idea is that your employer sends your Social Security number to a database, which returns a “match” that indicates valid citizenship. “No match” equals no citizenship, and usually, no job. However, a judge ruled shortly after the legislation’s introduction, that it was illegal to fire a person over an “unmatched” return.

Time’s up,” writes Michelle Chen of RaceWire. While the President has made some “overtures” toward immigration reform, the White House has “generally adhered to the status quo set by the Bush administration.” Not all involved are feeling so patient: “Faced with the news that immigration reform may have to wait until 2010, some organizations say their patience has run out.” The Mexican American Political Association, for one, has called for direct action to make clear the urgent necessity for leadership on this issue:

We are taking the brunt of the attacks and suffering the immediate consequences of this misguided policy, therefore, our call is urgent to take to the streets on September 5th, the Labor Day weekend, and October 12th, not to ask but demand that President Obama stop the attacks on immigrants and that he fulfill his promise of immigration reform, that which we heard during the presidential campaign, but has recently been forgotten.

Increasingly, the White House appears to be backing away from its promises to important constituencies. The administration’s inaction plays out with very real results on the ground, including increased tension, anxiety, and violence against immigrant communities. As we are a nation of immigrants, the effects of ignoring this pressing issue are widespread and will only grow worse in time.


This post features links to the best independent, progressive reporting about immigration and is free to reprint. Visit Immigration.NewsLadder.net for a complete list of articles on immigration, or follow us on Twitter. And for the best progressive reporting on critical economy and health issues, check out Economy.NewsLadder.net and Healthcare.NewsLadder.net. This is a project of The Media Consortium, a network of 50 leading independent media outlets, and was created by NewsLadder.