Posts Tagged ‘reform’

bernierally27_1458962300931_1172729_ver1.0

 

What America SHOULD be doing to be “great” instead of falling for despotic con men like Trump.

 

Tulsi tries to reform the undemocratic “Democratic” party.

SIGN:

Urge DNC Members to Eliminate Superdelegates

Legalization, hypocrisy, racist policy and a psychotic society…

Ethan Nadelmann: Why we need to end the War on Drugs

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CaliforniaPrison

Finally, something I voted for actually won.

You just made history. Voters passed Proposition 47 and California is now the first state to end felony sentencing for simple drug possession.

YOU made this incredible victory possible. Thank you for helping us cross the finish line!

California’s new law will change sentencing from felonies to misdemeanors for six low-level, nonviolent crimes such as simple drug possession and petty theft. This will reduce the number of people spending time in prison who don’t need to be there for any reason of justice or public safety. It goes into effect immediately, at 12:01 am on November 5.

Passage of Proposition 47 is a significant step toward ending mass incarceration and the war on drugs. It has the potential to drastically reduce the number of people in state prisons and county jails and it will dedicate the savings — likely more than $1 billion over five years — to schools, victim services, and mental health and drug addiction treatment. The impact of Prop. 47 in California on wasteful corrections spending and individual lives will be profound and surely resonate across the country.

DPA’s lobbying arm, Drug Policy Action, backed this initiative with assistance on the drafting, as well as financial and other support for the campaign.

You should feel proud of your role in this victory. Proposition 47 is a significant step forward for California that could boost efforts in other states to follow our lead. And we’re looking forward to 2016, when there will be even more drug policy reform measures on the ballot in California and across the country.

Our victory is a shift from punitive drug war policies in favor of humane alternatives. We’re excited to work with you to achieve even more. Congratulations, and thank you for making this win possible!

Sincerely,

Lynne Lyman
State Director, California
Drug Policy Alliance

aclu

ACLU Strongly Supports Sensenbrenner-Leahy Bill Reforming NSA Surveillance Authorities
USA Freedom Act Would Limit NSA Spying

October 29, 2013

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: 212-549-2666, media@dcaclu.org

WASHINGTON – A bipartisan reform bill to rein in the National Security Agency’s bulk collection, analysis, and storage of Americans’ electronic communications was introduced in both the Senate and the House of Representatives today. The American Civil Liberties Union strongly supports the bill, which is sponsored by Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, and Rep. Jim Sensenbrenner (R-Wis.), one of the original authors of the Patriot Act.

“The last five months have proven that the NSA cannot be trusted with the surveillance authorities they have been given by a secret court without the knowledge or approval of the American people,” said Michelle Richardson, legislative counsel at the ACLU’s Washington Legislative Office. “The only way to stop the NSA’s collect-it-all mentality is for Congress to pass legislation that prohibits the intelligence community from engaging in the dragnet surveillance of Americans’ communications. The legislation introduced today by Sen. Leahy and Rep. Sensenbrenner is a true reform bill that rejects the false and dangerous notion that privacy and our fundamental freedoms are incompatible with security.”

The bill, The USA FREEDOM Act, would enact the following core reforms to NSA surveillance authorities:

  • It would end the bulk collection of Americans’ records shared with third parties and put reasonable limits on Patriot Act powers targeted at people in the U.S. The new restrictions would apply not only to phone records collected under Section 215 of the Patriot Act, but national security letters and pen registers that have also been abused.
  • It would amend the 2008 FISA Amendments Act to require court orders before the government could use American information collected during foreign intelligence operations.
  • It would increase transparency by allowing communications providers to disclose the number of surveillance orders they receive, mandate the government publish how many people are subject to surveillance orders, and make public significant FISA Court opinions since July 2003.
  • It would create a public advocate that could advise the secret surveillance court in certain cases.

The bill pulls language together from the many House and Senate bills introduced over the last several months by members of both parties.

“The bulk collection of Americans’ phone records is an extraordinary and intrusive power government should not have,” said Richardson. “This legislation rightly shuts the program down and provides additional protections to ensure the government doesn’t engage in the bulk collection of any other records. Proposals described by the Intelligence Committees would only make the current situation worse by entrenching privacy-busting practices. Congress should focus on reforms like Sensenbrenner-Leahy.”

The bicameral legislation has attracted prominent, bipartisan support.

In the Senate, 16 bipartisan cosponsors include Sens. Mike Lee (R-Utah), Dean Heller (R-Nev.), Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), Tom Udall (D-N.M.), Mark Begich (D-Alaska), Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.), Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.), Ed Markey (D-Mass.), Mark Udall (D-Colo.), Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), and Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.).

In the House, more than 70 bipartisan cosponsors include Reps. John Conyers (D-Mich.), Zoe Lofgren (D-Calif.), Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.), Bennie Thompson (D-Miss.), Hank Johnson (D-Ga.), Ami Bera (D-Calif.), Mike Quigley (D-Ill.), Darrell Issa (R-Calif.), John Mica (R-Fla.), Justin Amash (R-Mich.), Duncan Hunter (R-Calif.), and Dana Rohrabacher (R-Calif.).

The ACLU has also filed a lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of the NSA’s bulk collection of Americans’ call records. Oral argument has been set for Nov. 1. For more on ACLU vs. Clapper: aclu.org/national-security/aclu-v-clapper-challenge-nsa-mass-phone-call-tracking

More information on the ACLU’s work rolling back NSA spying can be accessed at:
aclu.org/time-rein-surveillance-state-0

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mw2z9lV3W1g

Corruption, bribery, conflicts of interest, plutocracy, Lesterland, money in politics…

s-MONEY-large

 

PS

I debated for this same solution in journalism class and was met with blank stares and knee jerk rejectionism.

They said: “We have to get money out of politics, not in!  That’s absurd.”

Me: “We have to get people’s influence INTO politics to offset the influence of what that money is buying.”

The solution is as easy as a one line box on the 1040 Income Tax form.  Give everyone a piece of political money to play in the game.  It doesn’t have to be a lot, just enough to empower the voices who represent common people.  This is the obvious solution to empower regular people to compete in the political arena while still being fair to the entrenched upper class.  Right now the elites monopolize the political funding system and control the candidates and high officials.  The only sensible response is to empower the rest of us, whom they are currently fucking over, so that our voices are heard too (as they are attached to campaign contributions).