Purple Ocean, the political arm of the Service Employees International Union, is still fighting to make the US's largest employer responsible to something other than the bottom line. A sister organization, WalMartWatch is helping to get the facts out.
The Maryland legislature has passed historic legislation to deal with Wal-Mart's abuse. "The Wal-Mart bill" would require businesses with more than 10,000 employees in MD to spend at least 8 percent of their total payroll on employee health benefits or pay for their employee's reliance on state heath insurance programs. Governor Ehrlich is threatening to veto the bill after receiving generous campaign contributions from Wal-Mart Inc.Details and a press release here, how you can help here.
Black Box Voting is still fighting to restore and preserve democracy. There are five main focuses right now, including this one in Illinois:
Large payments from Diebold are fueling influence-peddling for a $45 million Cook County/Chicago voting machine contract. Diebold has been lobbying both Ohio and Cook County/Chicago through a small corporation formed by a Republican and two well-connected Democrats. Diebold is reportedly making payments directly to the individuals and payments are also flowing through a corporation formed by the three partners...Other battles for honest and accountable voting continue in California and elsewhere. Particularly disturbing to me are attempts to undermine fair voting under the guise of compliance with disability-access laws. File that under bullshit, right next to W's claim that destroying Social Security is good for African-Americans. For more info - and to see what you can do - start here.
The NRDC is fighting to preserve America's natural heritage, and keep a few parcels of peace and beauty out of the hands of industry. Here's a typical move:
Earlier this year, the Interior Department approved a plan to open 95 percent of New Mexico's Otero Mesa -- part of our Greater Rockies BioGem -- to oil and gas exploration. In response, New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson filed suit on April 22nd against Interior Department Secretary Gale Norton for failing to adequately protect this fragile and irreplaceable wildland. . . .Here are some things you can do.
New Mexico's Otero Mesa is home to pronghorn, burrowing owls, the endangered Aplomado falcon, mountain lions and countless other species. Beneath its grasslands lies a freshwater aquifer that is large enough to supply drinking water for New Mexicans for more than a hundred years.
Even though Governor Richardson proposed a plan for protecting the most fragile parts of Otero Mesa, the Interior Department chose instead to give oil and gas companies virtually unlimited access to this special place. The agency's decision also ignored comments submitted by tens of thousands of people from all over the country in support of protecting Otero Mesa.
What's worse, the Interior Department went ahead with its plan even though federal land managers believe there is little chance of finding economically recoverable amounts of oil and gas in the area.
And this wouldn't be Activists' Corner (is this Activists' Corner? dunno, just made that up) if I didn't update you on the reproductive rights front.
If you haven't educated yourself about the Teen Endangerment Act (falsely called the "Child Custody Protection Act"), now is the time. Even if you're not a teenager - or the parent of a teen - or the parent of someone who will one day be a teen - even if you feel this dangerous legislation will have little or no direct effect on your life - ask yourself, What kind of country do I want to live in?
This is such an extreme intrusion of government into the private lives of citizens, and such a blatant forcing of someone's private (so-called) morality into the public sphere. It's one more step down the slippery slope called fascism. Resist it.
Read more here. General resistance here, among other places.