December 12, 2010-EMPTY PLATES SPECIAL: Take Care of the Hungry Not the Wealthy!
This is my "Empty Plates" protest flyer. You are welcome to use it! I'm going to staple it to an empty white paper plate and hand it out.
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WE NEED TO TAKE CARE OF OUR HUNGRY, NOT OUR WEALTHY! TELL BARACK OBAMA, “USE AN EXECUTIVE ORDER TO START A WPA!”
Patrick Martin, WSW: “In a society which took seriously the value of human life and the future of its children, the spectacle of 50 million people at risk of hunger, including 1 million children, would be a social emergency. Given that the United States once boasted of its ability to feed the planet, the indifference to the growth of hunger at home is a national scandal.” A new report from the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture reveals 50 million Americans exist under the poverty line and were too poor to buy adequate food last year. That is approximately 17.4 million families. More than a third of these households, with over one million children, were forced to skip meals. http://www.informationclearinghouse.info...
From the Dept. of Agriculture or Archives of Pediatric and Adolescent Medicine:
• Nearly 1 in 4 American children live in households that struggle to put food on the table. That’s 16.7 million children.
• Nearly 1 in 4 children in America is at risk of hunger. Among African-Americans and Latinos, 1 in 3. (16.7 million children)
• About half of all American children will receive SNAP (the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program—Food Stamps) benefits at some point before age 20. Among African-American children, 90 percent will enroll in SNAP before age 20.
• 1 in 8 people is enrolled in SNAP. Nearly half are children.
• More than 90% of SNAP benefits are used up by the third week of the month.
• 1 in every 2 babies born in the United States is enrolled in WIC (Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children).
Statistics from the U.S. Census Bureau, 2009.
• More than 1 in 8 people in the United States lives below the poverty line, which is $21,756 for a family of four in 2009. One in five children in the United States lives below the poverty line.
• Most Americans (51.4 percent) will live in poverty at some point before age 65.
• A person working full-time at the minimum wage earns $14,500 a year. The official poverty line for a family of three—one parent with two children—is $17,285.
From Bread for the World website: http://notes.bread.org/
• The United States has gone from 1st to 9th place among nations in the percentage of its population that graduates from college.
• The U.S. 24th in the portion of children who have a high school degree. The main reason the U.S. economy was so dominant for much of the Twentieth Century is because U.S. workers on the whole were so much better educated than other workers across the world.
Statement by Michigan Green Party Candidate: Julia Williams on her EMPTY PLATES protest:
THE BEGINNING: ONE SMALL OUTCRY!!!! DEC. 12, 2010 http://juliawilliamsforcongress.com/
“I call for all of us who reject the economic terrorism of our legacy parties to RISE UP and hit the pavement! I want to see grandmothers and mothers, grandfathers and fathers, children, union members, students, Greens, Socialists, any group that rejects the idea that forced starvation can in any way “be good for our country”, become a visible, palpable, physical presence, and demonstrate on December 12th! …
Can we demand that Obama sign Executive Order 7034 and create a WPA? A thousand small fires can light up this country, the beginning of a movement that rejects the savaging of our safety nets, that disavows the idea that throwing millions of children into poverty, hunger and homelessness is the answer to our economic problem, while corporations and CEOs enjoy ever-larger profits and income at our expense. Please, can we join together for this one, small outcry? For a few hours in the middle of this holiday season we can make a statement that could reverberate around the country and begin to show our true strength.”
Obama: Create Jobs by Executive Order http://www.marjoriecohn.com/2010/11/obam...
Excerpts from Jeanne Mirer and Marjorie Cohn
The WPA was quickly implemented. By March 1936, 3.4 million people were employed and an average of 2.3 million people worked monthly until the program ended in June 1943. During its existence the WPA employed more than 8,500,000 different persons on 1,410,000 individual projects, and spent about $11 billion. The average yearly salary was $1,100, a living wage at the time. During its 8-year history, the WPA built 651,087 miles of highways, roads, and streets. It constructed, repaired, or improved 124,031 bridges, 125,110 public buildings, 8,192 parks, and 853 airport landing fields.
Today our infrastructure is crumbling, and loss of revenue is forcing many cities and states to cut basic services. About 15 million people have become unemployed since the crisis hit in late 2008; a million and a half of them are construction workers. The need for a direct jobs program is either as great, or even greater than during the Depression. But, in light of the election results, is such a program possible? Can the President directly create jobs by executive order? The answer is a resounding yes. Remember when the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008, which created the $700 billion Troubled Assets Relief Program (TARP) was passed, one of the purposes was to preserve homeownership, and promote jobs and economic growth.
Much of the TARP money has been repaid and the administration refers to the profit on the payments. If one assumes an average cost of one job is $50,000, 6 million jobs could be immediately created for $300 billion. 12 million jobs could be created for $600 billion. Because this is already appropriated money, Congressional Republicans could not block it. This direct job creation would be bold. It would also be highly stimulative. It would not add to the deficit because it is already appropriated money. Furthermore, one third of it would come back immediately in taxes, and more importantly, the growth in demand from this number of added jobs would expand private sector job growth and grow the overall economy.
This country has a lot to do to get its economic house in order. It is heavily dependent on the financial services industry which only promotes speculation and unregulated bubbles. It is largely controlled by the defense industries which have promoted two and possibly more wars. It is beholden to the extractive energy industries, whose owners are funding the “tea party,” thus putting environmental amelioration on indefinite hold. And it is more and more influenced by the prison industrial complex which promotes hostility to immigrants, and takes resources from education and other vital areas. For the last 30 years it has relied on anti-union and anti-worker policies, which has forced the hemorrhaging of high paid manufacturing jobs to low cost countries and driven down wages for U.S. workers which can no longer be papered over with unsustainable debt.
The President cannot solve all these problems overnight, but with a stroke of a pen he can use already appropriated money to create millions of good green jobs, and move down the road to recovery much faster. Any opposition to this from the Republicans will expose their hostility to anyone but the richest members of society, and give the progressive movement ammunition to take the offensive.