Saturday, January 21, 2017

Wichita's Women's March was a huge success

By SJ Otto
I was really impressed with Wichita's Women's March. There were thousands of people there. That has got to be about the larges march I ever attended in Wichita.
There seemed to be a general agreement that we all wanted President Donald Trump to know we will not sit back passively and just watch as he destroys women's rights and other rights that we have. There were also women's marches in major cities across the country and across the world.
The march started at the Keeper of the Plains statue. Then people marched to Wichita City Hall. One estimation I heard was that the crowed reached about 3,000. Women and men of all ages marched. Although most of the marchers were women, there were a lot of men and some children.
Once the crowd gathered at City Hall there were some women singing with guitars and the speakers started.
Beth Clarkson spoke on voter machine fraud.
"When I was a little girl I wanted to be a doctor and I was told I could not be a doctor," she told the crowd. "I was told I could be a nurse or marry and doctor. Today I have a PhD and I'm working on the voting system."
She said she has been investigating instances of voter fraud in Kansas and there have been many irregularities.
Close your eyes and think of Wichita in 100 years. I envision flying cars, hand counted paper ballets and universal health care," she said. "Millennials, you are the greatest generation."
And if they help us vote out these conservatives I will agree with her.
 Julie Burkhart, Founder and CEO of Trust Women, spoke of need to fight for reproductive freedoms.
"Dr. Tiller used to say to me 'tell me the bad news first," she said. "Well the bad news is for the next few years reproductive freedom rights will be bad."
She went on to talk about efforts in two states to completely ban abortion.
"If you can't control reproduction you can't control your own life," she said.
Trust Women has a clinic in Wichita, Kansas and Oklahoma City.
Karen Countryman-Roswurm spoke about human trafficking.
"Sexual violence is the pipeline to prison for women," Roswurm said.
She went on to talk about women who end up in prison, women who lose their children and women whose lives have been messed up because their men have been jailed under the "war on drugs."
"We have to stand outside our privilege and recognise that violence exists," she went on to say.
Pastor Pamaline King-Burns spoke of her faith and fighting against hate.
"There are the seeds of discord," she said. "There were the children who grew up slaves, black men were slaves, Chinese were indentured. The seeds grew oak trees of hate. But we rose up. We made child labor laws, women can vote."
Briley Meek spoke for Planned Parenthood.
"I don't think I'm alone when I say I'm afraid for the future of my health care."
She said that Planned Parenthood not only gives women health care but does it without passing judgment on women.
Miranda Allen spoke of empowering women. She spoke of the need for people to vote.  Allen ran for the US House of Representatives as an independent.
Allen ran in the Kansas’ 4th District, which includes most of south-central Kansas. That seat is presently held by Republican Rep. Mike Pompeo.
The crowd was enthusiastic. Reproductive rights, Obamacare (Affordable Care Act, ACA) and issues of combating racism were themes heard from the various speakers.
Other rallies have been held across the country and world. My wife Cam Gentry was in Washington, DC. She said that march was way bigger than anyone thought it would be.
One thing I noticed from many people I know and talked to is that Trump is galvanizing people to become politically active. This may be just the first salvo of a political movement for women and men to defend their rights. 
It was hard to capture the crowd with a camera.

There were some very creative signs.

And in Washington DC.....

Cam and her sister Marsha Hesany.




Here are Some thoughts on the demise of the Kasama Project

សតិវអតុ is a Marxist writer in the Wichita area. He disguises his name to prevent discrimination
against himself.

By សតិវអតុ
Sometimes it feels as if I’m the only Maoist left in America. I know that isn’t really true. I know of one other Marxist-Leninist in the whole town of Wichita and I don’t see him very often, if ever.
I used to follow the Kasama Project. They broke away from the Revolution Communist Party. That party was already getting to dogmatic. They have this great leader Bob Avakian who is their main theoretician. But Kasama broke away from the great leader approach while Bob and his RCP went even further to the “have you seen the truth” (The Watchtower method) or religious style promotion of politics and leadership.
Meanwhile Kasama collapsed. They simply gave up. They no longer do anything.
Over the decades we had the people’s war in Peru and Nepal. The guerrilla movement in Peru collapsed, in 1992. The Guerrillas in Nepal won an end to the monarchy, but they ended up in a bourgeois democracy. The Maoist had won the fist election, but now they represent a little over 10 percent of the seats in the Nepal congress. A splinter group has broken away to build back the revolution, but they seem stuck.
The Communist Party of India (Maoist) भारत की कम्युनिस्ट पार्टी (माओवादी is the only real Maoist party with any real territory it operates in or controls. Except there is a small country in Nepal that has been taken over by the more radical faction called Communist Party of Nepal-Maoist  (नेपाल कम्युनिष्ट पार्टी - माओवादी), or CPN-M. Efforts in Bhutan and other places in Asia just haven’t done well.
So Maoism is stuck for now. I recently joined back into Democratic Socialist of America (DSA). That's not because I reject Marxist groups, there just aren't any around here.
There are some local people in DSA that I can work with. It is better to try and do something rather than just sit back and write articles for Otto’s War Room, a Maoist blog. I plan to keep it up for international issues and as an anti-imperialist blog. But I’m helping build up The Idiot Factor: Corruption Folly. I will be attending DSA meetings and seeing what kinds of activities we can take part in. I was active in DSA before. Now I’m back again. It may be politically incorrect for some groups of people, but right now I just don’t care. I want to be doing something. 


DSA emblem

Friday, January 20, 2017

Pompeo- nominee for CIA- snagged over privacy rights

By SJ Otto
The press has been saying that Mike Pompeo will sail right through congress to become the next CIA director. But…WAIT…not so fast. “Sen. Ron Wyden of Oregon, a Democratic member of the Senate Intelligence Committee and a vocal privacy advocate, has formally objected to the Senate voting Friday on CIA director nominee Rep. Mike Pompeo's nomination after Donald Trump is sworn in as president, a source familiar with the situation told CNN Thursday.”
It seems that some in congress are concerned about Pompeo’s lack of respect for the privacy of law abiding citizens. Pompeo believes in spying on anyone at any time. According to CNN:

“Wyden also talked about his concerns Thursday when he told reporters the Senate needed "a little bit of time to examine" Pompeo's surveillance proposals.
"Mike Pompeo is proposing a brand new system of collecting an enormous amount of data on Americans, law abiding Americans, including life-style information, I think that's the kind of thing that you ought to take a little bit of time to examine," Wyden said.”

And from an earlier article in the Idiot Factor:

“As a veteran, I want our soldiers in the field to have the intelligence they need to perform their missions effectively. As a conservative, and member of the House Intelligence Committee, I take the balance between privacy and protecting American lives very seriously. I believe these anti-terror programs are crucial.”

But he doesn't take it seriously. He has gleefully supported the spying on innocent American citizens by the NSA. In fact he has supported the NSA when it has engaged in massive, illegal dragnet surveillance of the domestic communications and communications records of millions of ordinary Americans since at least 2001. 
Pompoe even supports the use of drones for surveillance of American citizens.”

There is good reason to hold up Pompeo’s nomination.

To see the CNN article on Wyden, click here.




Pix by Press TV.

Thursday, January 19, 2017

As Trump is sworn in—the nation is deeply divided

By SJ Otto
I'm glad to see all the planned protests against the Donald Trump inauguration. I am also glad to see all the Democrats and Celebrities who are planning to boycott Trump's swearing in. This country is more divided than it has been since the Vietnam War. It needs to stay that way. The Republicans have learned how to win elections. Now they are poised to attack every government program that that poor people and poor working people need to survive. That is evident as the Republicans in congress get ready to end Obamacare (Affordable Care Act or ACA) and pull the rug out from under 18 million people who presently have access to health care. They will also take away the Medicaid expansion that many poor working people rely on to stay healthy and ALIVE.
The attacks don't stop there. Women's rights are under attack. And racist of every stripe are strutting their stuff, with the idea "this is Trump country now." They feel free to spew their racist venom with delight.
It is not just redneck working class rubes spreading the hate.  Consider what  Maine Gov. Paul LePage said just recently. According to the Portland Press Herald:

"Maine Gov. Paul LePage said Tuesday that the NAACP should apologize to white America, making the comment just hours after he weighed in on the president-elect’s Twitter beef with a black civil rights icon.
But the governor rewrote American history when he misrepresented events surrounding racial segregation in the South.
“I will just say this: John Lewis ought to look at history,” the Republican said during his weekly appearance on the George Hale and Ric Tyler Show on Bangor-based radio station WVOM. “It was Abraham Lincoln who freed the slaves, it was Rutherford B. Hayes and Ulysses S. Grant who fought against Jim Crow laws. A simple thank you would suffice.”
LePage’s version of history erred on two key points. Historians say that Jim Crow laws didn’t exist during the Grant administration, and that Hayes’ presidency set the stage for the creation of Jim Crow laws.
The governor’s criticism was aimed at Rep. John Lewis, a civil rights leader and Democratic member of Congress from Georgia, who announced Friday that he wouldn’t attend Donald Trump’s inauguration and said, “I don’t see this president-elect as a legitimate president.” Trump answered Lewis on Twitter, saying Lewis was “all talk, talk, talk – no action or results. Sad!”.....
......LePage, later trying to clarify his references to presidents Hayes and Grant, said the NAACP was casting all white Americans as racists. It’s not clear why he referred to the NAACP in his criticism of Lewis, who was a founder of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee in the 1960s, not the NAACP.
“The blacks, the NAACP (paint) all white people with one brush,” LePage said. “To say that every white American is a racist is an insult. The NAACP should apologize to the white people, to the people from the North for fighting their battle.”

LePage is typical of the kind of Republicans that are winning elections all over this country. His actions are destructive to the common working man and especially the working poor. He is typical of the backward, right-wing, repugnant and disgusting bullies that have crawled out from under their rocks to poison our political Climate. His remarks are so blatantly racist it is remarkable that he is able to stay in that office. When elected politicians like him can get away with such blatant racism, it is no surprise that fringe people on the far right believe their time is here at last.
It is no wonder that more than 60 Democrats plan to boycott Trump's inauguration. We all need to let Trump and the Republicans know that we may not be able to stop him from taking office, but he will be at war with us his entire term.

Rep. John Lewis, D-Georgia

Pix from The Hill.

Women's March in Wichita, KS

For those interested, who live in Wichita or nearby, there will be a Women's March to coincide with the march in Washington DC. We already have about 1,000 people signed up to go.
This is our opportunity to show Donald Trump and the Republican Party that we are not just going to lay down and play dead while our new President and his party try to destroy all the rights women and others have worked for over the last 50 years.
Place: The Keeper of the Plains (the big statue at 650 N. Seneca Street in Wichita).
When: Saturday, at 10am to 1pm.

There will also be a chilli feed after the March, complete with updates on the situation at Standing Rock.
Place: Mid-American All-Indian Center.
When: Saturday, from 11:30am to 2pm.

-SJ Otto


Tuesday, January 17, 2017

We are all getting ready for the swearing in of Donald Trump

We are already off to a good start with the final transition and now inauguration of Donald Trump, our 45th president. We are already seeing signs that Trump is not popular and maybe one of the most unpopular president-elect in our history. Many people plan to protest his inauguration and others will boycott it. I plan to attend a local women’s March on Saturday. I will NOT be watching Trump being sworn in on Jan. 20. I may choose to watch ME TV that day. –SJ Otto
-According to Yahoo News:
Donald Trump is the most unpopular president-elect in recent history, according to a new Gallup poll. Just 44 percent of Americans approve of his incoming administration, compared with 51 percent who disapprove, the survey found.
Trump is far less popular than President Barack Obama was when he was elected in 2008 on a message of hope and change. Then, 83 percent of Americans approved of the transition. And Obama's predecessor, George W. Bush, also got more love than Trump. Bush enjoyed support from a 61 percent of Americans as he entered the White House.
For more click here.

-From Chad Griffin, President Human Rights Campaign:
Since Election Day, we received thousands of messages from supporters that added up to one big question: Now what?
Our response boils down to one simple word: Defy.
Defy Trump. Defy Pence. Defy hate.
If their cabinet secretaries treat us like we're less than other people, we're going to defy them.
If they come after our basic rights as citizens, we're going to defy them.
If they appoint judges who would roll back the progress we've made on equal rights, we're going to defy them.

They'll take office in just three days, and already Trump and Pence have surrounded themselves with nominees and aides who are avowed opponents of equality. We don't yet know what new attacks we'll see on LGBTQ rights and protections – but they've signaled they could repeal President Obama's federal contractor non-discrimination executive order or immediately overturn guidance protecting transgender students.
But I can promise you that we will be there to push back. Whenever and wherever they seek to allow discrimination, we will fight back.


Pix by YouTube.

Friday, January 13, 2017

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

The Women’s March on Washington is an expression of solidarity for the fight against Trump and the far right

By SJ Otto
Next week end there will be a major march for women and women’s rights timed to coordinate with the Donald Trump inauguration, The Women’s March on Washington. Women from across the country will come to meet and march on January 21.
According to their mission and vision the organizers said:

We stand together in solidarity with our partners and children for the protection of our rights, our safety, our health, and our families - recognizing that our vibrant and diverse communities are the strength of our country.

OUR MISSION
The rhetoric of the past election cycle has insulted, demonized, and threatened many of us - immigrants of all statuses, Muslims and those of diverse religious faiths, people who identify as LGBTQIA, Native people, Black and Brown people, people with disabilities, survivors of sexual assault - and our communities are hurting and scared. We are confronted with the question of how to move forward in the face of national and international concern and fear.
In the spirit of democracy and honoring the champions of human rights, dignity, and justice who have come before us, we join in diversity to show our presence in numbers too great to ignore. The Women’s March on Washington will send a bold message to our new government on their first day in office and to the world that women's rights are human rights. We stand together, recognizing that defending the most marginalized among us is defending all of us.
We support the advocacy and resistance movements that reflect our multiple and intersecting identities. We call on all defenders of human rights to join us. This march is the first step towards unifying our communities, grounded in new relationships, to create change from the grassroots level up. We will not rest until women have parity and equity at all levels of leadership in society. We work peacefully while recognizing there is no true peace without justice and equity for all.
HEAR OUR VOICE.

As can be expected there are the naysayers that believe the women’s march is a bad idea. Their reasons vary. Some have attacked the idea of so called “identity politics.” The Democratic Party is being advised to dump all of that and focus just on bread and butter issues that will appeal to the working class. A lot of pundits have noticed that uneducated white people, many who consider themselves democrats, voted for Trump.

Chris Arnade, of Quarts wrote before the election:

The United States is a place divided by race, class, and education. The 2016 election has divided us further. While minorities overwhelmingly favor the Democratic nominee for president, Hillary Clinton, whites are split at historic levels along the lines of educational background. Those with a college degree, the front-row kids, are much more likely to support Clinton than those without—the kids in the back.
Much of the reason for the divide lies in the fact that the front row is doing much better than the back row. While those in the back row earn about a fifth less than they did 35 years ago, the front row now earns more.
But the rift between Americans goes deeper than that. I am a front-row kid who has spent much of the last five years among those in the back row. And what I have seen are very different versions of America, with fundamentally different values and concepts of personal meaning.
It is this divide, along with the racial divide, that Donald Trump is exploiting now. It is a divide that blinded many of us in the front row to Trump’s broad appeal despite his ugly views. It is a divide that led many to underestimate him, and helped him come within reach of the US presidency.

Likewise is Kay S. Hymowitz who wrote for the New York Times:

I’m not a Trump supporter, but having talked to and read interviews with some of the 56 percent of white women and 43 percent of women overall who are, I think it’s safe to say this kind of talk will fool nobody.
Those women will – correctly – view the rally as organized by and for the women on the other side of the canyon. News media stories about the marchers refer to reproductive health clinic managers, professors, writers, attorneys, fashion designers, university students and 
an artist who is bringing her bachelorette party. There may well be a few small town factory workers and military wives among the 200,000 women expected to link arms on Jan. 21, but they will be alien creatures in a blue sea of creative and professional class elites. 
The women of the other side will – also correctly – know that the marchers look down on them as at best benighted fools and at worst racist haters. On her first show after the election Samantha Bee, one of the spokeswomen for the march, blasted “Caucasian Nation“ women for betraying their sex. Chelsea Handler, who is leading a satellite march in Hollywood-studded Sundance, described them as
self-mutilating.” 
If march enthusiasts are serious about wanting to speak for women, rather than laughing along with liberal comedians who treat the rubes like chopped liver…..They might learn that though they disliked Hillary Clinton, especially in the Rust Belt states, a significant number of Trump supporting women voted for Barack Obama. Many of them were eager to vote for a woman president. They put jobs, terrorism and health care before social issues, but that doesn’t mean they weren’t put off by Trump’s sexism. 

First of all, there are those who claim that a march will do nothing. Those people really have no solution of their own. The election is over and electoral politics has its limitations. We need to do all we can. Marches don’t get a lot of change accomplished but we can’t just do nothing.
Second, such a division can’t be helped. The Republican Party has been waging a class war on the American working class, the working poor and those in deep poverty. Many of us on the left have done what we can to reach out and support those classes. But quite often members of those very classes vote against their own interest. They vote for Republicans. Earlier last year labor leaders were in despair. They warned their members that Trump was especially down on labor unions. Most of their members voted for him anyway.
What these articles and others like them imply is that the better educated classes, of which the above authors claims were the supporters behind Hillary Clinton and the Democrats, has unfairly ganged up on their less fortunate working class democrats. There may be some truth to this, but to imply we should be more like the Republicans is not the answer. The less educate may be more likely to look down on gays, blacks and other minorities. But why should we have to stoop to that level? Such minorities need our support. We shouldn’t need to become Archie Bunkers to gain the support of poorer working class individuals.
I’m not sure why these authors think that the issue of decent jobs is not important to the better educated. Jobs are a problem for a lot of people. And not all well-educated professional class people have the jobs they want or need. After all, one of the things that struck with the Bernie Sanders crowds was the idea of free college education. Those who spend thousands to go and get a college education are tired of not finding the jobs they studied and trained for.
It is also puzzling as to why working people who need healthcare would vote for a man who wants to dismantle Obamacare (Affordable Care Act). The Republicans never have and never will want health care reform. They like the system. It is good for business.  
It is true that the Democrats have not done enough to support the working class. They have let them down. It was easy to see why Hillary Clinton did not appeal to the working class. But voting for the Republicans was like leaping from the frying pan into the fire.
The truth is that we need class war of our own. The Republicans are not the friend of the working man and neither are the corporations that rely on their support. Working people need to understand this. Corporate America has waged class war on the workers and poor people. The Women’s March on Washington gives us a chance to come together in solidarity for our own class warfare.

Democratic Socialist of America active in Wichita

By SJ Otto

A local chapter of Democratic Socialists of America (DSA) met here last Saturday, evening. The group of about 14 people discussed a variety of projects and events for the coming year, including taking part in the local version of the Women’s March, January 21. That march is being put on by local progressive groups to coincide with the Women’s March on Washington, on that same day. The Washington march is a planned national event by women who want the new Trump Administration to recognise that their voices will be heard and will count while he is in office. DSA will try to have a table at the local event.
There is also an even planned to support the protesters in Standing Rock, North Dakota, at the Wichita Indian Center.
Other events discussed included the Kansas People's Agenda event with people from around the state going to the Kansas State Capital, from 9:30 to 3:30, January 11.
There will be a DSA Training Day, Jan. 28, Peace and Social Justice Center of Kansas, 12pm to 4pm.
The Next meeting will be February 4, at 7pm.

Monday, January 09, 2017

Read how conservatives cheat, steal and lie—stolen play book

I received this in my e-mail. The American Majority organization has stolen documents that our progressive groups have planned to use to defend our positions. This group is notorious for trying to cheat on elections and using unethical means of undermining us. Such cheating is typical of this group and the Republican Party. We need to get all their documents and learn how to counter their destructive bag of dirty tricks. -SJ Otto



The Progressive left is at it again. President-Elect Trump hasn’t even been sworn in and they’ve already committed to undercutting him at any turn. On January 2nd, three former congressional staff published a piece of free advertising column in the New York Times promoting their effort to copy Tea Party strategies to attack conservative policies. They explain:
The Tea Party’s success was a disaster for President Obama’s agenda and for our country, but that success should give us hope today. It proved the power that local, defensive organizing can have.
With this in mind, we coordinated a group of former congressional staffers and advocates to develop “Indivisible: A Practical Guide for Resisting the Trump Agenda.” It takes a few pages from the Tea Party playbook, focusing on its strategic choices and tactics, while dispensing with its viciousness. It’s the Tea Party inverted: locally driven advocacy built on inclusion, fairness and respect. It’s playing defense, not to obstruct, but to protect.
Once you get past the leftists talking points, slander, trigger warnings, calls for diversity, and reminders to check your gender/race/class/wealth privileges, the document is a well composed, insightful guide to influencing your representatives. I suggest you download the pdf and read the entire thing, but here are the 5 best insights from their guide and how you can undermine  their strategies to promote conservative solutions to our country’s problems.
1. Understand the incentives of your representatives
MoCs want their constituents to think well of them and they want good, local press. They hate surprises, wasted time, and most of all, bad press that makes them look weak, unlikable, and vulnerable.
Throughout the Indivisible Guide, the authors constantly remind you to focus on the incentives and priorities or your representatives. As they state Members of Congress (MoCs) “functionally speaking, MoCs are always either running for office or getting ready for their next election” no matter if they’re up for election or not. Everything they do is viewed through the lens of how this will affect them when campaign season comes around. They run their office and host events to ensure constituents think their “MoC cares about me, shares my values, and is working hard for me”. Breaking that facade will drive your MoC towards actions you want.

What we’re reading
Here are the top stories we are following this week:

A recent New York Times story that slams the free market approach to education policy is rife with inaccuracies. Amazingly, the author of the piece misrepresents the very data she is using to build her erroneous case against school choice.
"Free Market for Education? Economists Generally Don't Buy It," claims Susan Dynarski, a professor of education, public policy, and economics at the University of Michigan, in The Times. This is a betrayal of expectations, according to Dynarski, because economists generally understand that free markets produce better outcomes than central planners (much to the chagrin of education professors). Economists are usually the ones calling for less regulation and more unrestricted capitalism; if they're super conflicted about markets in education, that would be a serious indictment of the school choice approach. Dynarski writes:
Via Reason

As the clock continues to wind down on the Obama presidency — 17 days, 13 hours and 42 minutes as of this post, but who's counting — his closest of close advisers, Valerie Jarrett, told CNN's Fareed Zakaria in an interview which aired Sunday that the administration has been scandal-free.
Jarrett also said Obama hasn't done anything to embarrass himself.

Expansion of Right-to-Work laws: Great news for millennials
The 2016 election was a big win for young conservatives. The GOP retained Senate control, and Donald Trump is now heading to the White House with a pro-growth agenda.
While the national implications of Election Day are important, so are the victories local Republicans scored. Republican gains in state legislatures across the country will mean more right-to-work laws (RTW) are coming – and this is great for young workers.
American Majority
PO Box 87
Purcellville, VA 20134

 To get more of this click here.

Friday, January 06, 2017

What a jackhole: Trump orders ambassadors to yank their kids out of school and come home ASAP

Once again we see signs of things to come from our future Prez. Donald Trump, In this case, yanking ambassadors before they have replacements. Is it left or right? No. It is just plain stupid. -SJ Otto

From the Daily Kos:

It wouldn’t be a story about Donald Trump if it didn't start with “in a break with precedent.” In this case, it’s a break with decades of precedent: Trump has told all politically appointed U.S. ambassadors around the world that they must return home by Inauguration Day, full stop, end of story, consequences be damned.
And the consequences are plenty. For starters, it means that America won’t have diplomats in place in many countries by the time Trump is sworn in. That's a situation that would endure for months, since the Senate has to actually confirm each new ambassador, one by one. It's also liable to frighten our allies and embolden our not-so-allies, though if anything, that’s probably to Trump's liking.
But it’s for exactly these reasons that past presidents have always made exceptions, even for political appointees from the other party, to ensure continuity in our diplomatic relations, and also just not to be raging dicks to people who’ve gone overseas to serve our country. Lots of them, for instance, have families and young children abroad with them—children who are in the middle of their school year. Without visas, these people can’t remain in their host countries and are scrambling to either find a way to stay, or to uproot their kids and place them in new schools back home.
It’s fucking obnoxious, is what it is:
In Costa Rica, Ambassador Stafford Fitzgerald Haney is hunting for a house or an apartment as his family—which includes four school-age children and his wife, who has been battling breast cancer—struggles to figure out how to avoid a move back to the United States with five months left in the school year, according to the diplomats.
For the rest click here.



Pix by Odyssey.

Wednesday, January 04, 2017

Support Women's health in Kansas

From Julie A. Burkhart, Founder and CEO, Trust Women Foundation:

As this year comes to a close, you should be proud of what you accomplished in 2016. 
Your support of women made it possible for us to open the first new reproductive health care facility in Oklahoma that provides abortion in more than 40 years.That is more than FOUR DECADES, which is incredible. You did that. Because of you, Trust Women was able to provide high-quality reproductive health care to more people than ever before. If that's not a reason to pop some champagne tonight, I don't know what is.
I also want to remind you that no matter who is in the White House or in the governor's office in the states we serve, we will continue to provide direct access to abortion care for women and their families in underserved areas in the Midwest and South. We also will work toward the repeal of anti-choice legislation and for the passage of policies that would truly improve the lives of people in those regions and across this great country. Please rest assured that we will harder than ever this coming year for the rights of people everywhere.

I wanted to share a note from one of our patients to remind you of what you do, each day, to improve the lives of women. 


Sunday, January 01, 2017

Glad Obama didn’t block U.N. resolution

This was in today's local The Wichita Eagle. I am proud to be a part of this organization. -SJ Otto
The Peace and Social Justice Center applauds President Obama for not standing in the way of the U.N. Security Council resolution criticizing Israel’s illegal settlements in the Palestinian territories, which have been occupied by Israel since the 1967 war.
Previous U.S. administrations, from Ronald Reagan to George W. Bush, have all taken mild stands against this colonial policy, which violates the Fourth Geneva Convention against transferring civilians into occupied territory. Despite this, Obama continued, until now, to cover for Israeli conduct.
His administration recently announced $38 billion in aid to Israel, by far the largest financial support from the U.S. for any foreign regime. His administration even defends Israel’s siege of Gaza and its brutal wars on Gaza in 2008, 2012 and 2014.
This is the first time in his two terms that Obama has defied Israeli demands for unconditional support. We are glad to see this.



Pix by Equilibri.

Friday, December 30, 2016

A 2016 year end round up!

By SJ Otto
Once again it is time for a review of the important stories that that shaped our lives, or should I say; made us queasy. So here the events and stories that made 2016 the year that was:

January

The Flint Michigan water scandal broke. We saw that government turned its head while poor people had to suffer through an antiquated system of  a sub-standard water system. 
.

February

This was the month a great friend of mine and Kansas writer Tim Pouncey died. He was well known here in Kansas.


March


The US rejected North (Democratic Peoples Republic of) Korean peace talks. For the rest of President Barack Obama's term the US has had nothing but belligerence for that country. The DPRK has developed a nuclear bomb arsenal to protect themselves.

There was a major terror attack on Brussels, in an airport, by ISIS (Islamic State). It was a tragedy, but NATO countries should expect this from a Middle east group they are at war with.

May

Peace talks had begun between the Columbian Government and the Armed Revolutionary Forces for Colombia (FARC) to end their civil war. Since the guerrillas were only fighting for reforms they got what they wanted. The war ended and the can now be a political party.


June

England voted to exit the European Union. They wanted more autonomy and not to be under the thumb of Europe. There was also a lot of right-wing people who saw it as a way to oppose immigrants.


We had an election:

The Democratic Party cheated to stop the supporters of Bernie Sanders- Many young people across the country were disappointed to find out that the Democratic National  Committee intentionally tried to stop Sanders in favor of Hillary Clinton.

The  Orlando Gay Club Shooting was probably the worst terrorist shooting this country has ever seen. Almost 50 people shot in a gay club in Florida. The shooter decided he was inspired by ISIS.

There was massive flooding in Texas. This was one more example of the affects of global warming. Conservatives try to ignore this. But it can't be ignored.


August

An Earth-like planet was discovered around Proxima Centauri, which is the closest star to earth.

The Olympics took place and local people protested that they were not allowed to take part in the events.

September

 

There was a Syrian ceasefire. It went no where. It didn't last. The fighting was completely unnecessary and all it did was cause human suffering.

A new abortion clinic opened in Oklahoma City, owned by South Wind Women's Service. The South Wind organization has fought to bring legal abortion services to the women of Kansas and opening in Oklahoma was a major step against the anti-abortion crowd and their religious-right backers. 

October

The US invaded Mosul to dislodge ISIS. This was obviously a stunt to help Clinton win the election. Prez. Obama thought he could win her some support since people like to support the president in time of war.

Vengeful Colombia politicians on the right monkey wrenched the peace process by organizing opposition to the election to approve the peace process. They killed it. They nearly derailed a peace agreement to end 50 years of fighting for their own personal grudges. Luckily the president of Colombia, Juan Manuel Santos,  did not allow these people to derail the peace agreement over their own petty grudges.

November

Fidel Castro died, bringing an end to more than half a century of standing up to the US imperialism.


The Standing Rock Sioux Tribe has stood up to the US government and corporations that wanted to destroy their sacred grounds and poison their water with an oil pipeline. This pretest has gone on all year and a lot of white activist have joined in to stop this. The US Government and US corporations just never tire of desecrating the rights of Native American Indians.

So Donald Trump won the election, with less that 50 percent of the vote, but he manipulated the electoral collage. A lot of people I know have said "let's just wait and see what Trump actually does." Well, he has already picked some of the worst right-wing scum bags for his cabinet. We can tell what he plans to do and it is NOT good.

 

In Turkey there was a failed coup against the government of Tayyip Erdogan. So now he has grabbed power in what can only be described as a fascist take-over. He is slowly taking away the people's democratic rights.

The Koch Brothers, David and Charles are in the process of taking full control of a Kansas university known today as Wichita State University. The brothers have given lots of money to the school and have demanded a lot of control over it, by them. They have created a "culture of fear."

December

Trump has appointed an ambassador to Israel, David M. Friedman, who is nothing but trouble. He is farther to the right than their present leader Benjamin Netanyahu. He plans to move the US Embassy to Jerusalem and he plans to support the Israeli settlements on the West Bank which will pretty much kill any chance of a peace agreement.


Who knows what this new year will bring. But we will get to see soon enough. So hello 2017. Let the new year begin.

Janus was the ancient god who saw both the past and future at the same time.