Tags >> finances
Apr 15
2010

National Priorities Project

Posted by Bruce Robinson in war , technology , research , policy , peace , nonprofit orgs , news , legislation , journalism , government , finances , education , current events , Congress , budget , activism

Bruce Robinson

If you’ve ever wondered just where the taxes you pay actually get used, The National Priorities Project can tell you.

To see where your personal tax payments are going, visit the Tax-Day website hosted by the National Priorities Project. You can also track the war spending totals, and what that money could have funded instead for Sonoma County,  Marin County, or the state of California as a whole. They are far from new to this issue, explains National Priorities Project spokesman Chris Hellman. In fact, they’ve been at it, as an organization, longer than many, maybe even most, members of Congress have been in office.

On the occasion of their 25th anniversary, the Project produced the video below that summarizes their approach and their history.

[video:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wPA0B-ai0D8 360x240]

Over the years, Hellman adds, the Project has tracked budget details for many years. But to keep the information more easily digestable, they don’t try to identify long-term budgetary trends.

Apr 06
2010

Stimulus jobs

Posted by Bruce Robinson in Sonoma County , politics , nonprofit orgs , news , legislation , jobs , government , finances , employment , economy , current events , Congress , California , business , budget

Bruce Robinson

Federal stimulus money is quietly funding subsidized job placements in Sonoma County.

One the funding was released to the local program, it took only a few weeks to begin working. Conner clearly recalls the first person they were able to get hired.

In some cases, explains Fran Conner, the federally subsidized employment program covers the employer’s full cost of hiring the new worker. But even in those other cases, the substantial major of the workers’ wages are reimbursed.

Employers who are interested in participating in this program are invited to contact Karen McCarty, the Subsidized Employment Coordinator, at (707) 523-0550, extension 214. Job seekers should contact either Kirsten Gardner (707) 565-8543 or Isabel Garciabedoya-Melara (707) 565-8559.

Mar 24
2010

Corporate Personhood

Posted by Bruce Robinson in rights , politics , nonprofit orgs , news , legislation , history , government , finances , election , corporate responsibiliyt , Congress , business , activism

Bruce Robinson

California’s far north coast is home to a nationwide campaign for a constitutional amendment to revoke the concept of “corporate personhood,” as recently extended by the US Supreme Court.

More information about the proposed constitutional amendment can be found at the website for Move to Amend. Humbolt County Attorney David Cobb predicts that this issue that will generate a grassroots political movement that will gain momentum as it sweeps across the country over the next 1-3 years.

Drafting a constitutional amendment to address this issue is a complex and delicate matter, so Cobb says that, too, is being worked out in a transparent and inclusive process.

Murray Hill, a public relations firm in Silver Spring, Maryland, has seized on the Citizens United ruling to become the first "corporate person" to run for public office. Here's "his" somewhat satirical campaign ad.

[video:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HHRKkXtxDRA 250x250]

By way of contrast, Ira Glasser, head of the American Civil Liberties Union offers a dissenting view  on the Supreme Court decision.

 

Mar 10
2010

"Sick and Tired"

Posted by Bruce Robinson in politics , policy , medicine , legislation , journalism , healthcare , Health , government , finances , economy , drugs , corporate responsibiliyt , Congress , business , author

Bruce Robinson

Economist Helene Jorgensen thought she had good health insurance, until she got really sick. Having survived both her illness and her direct dealings with hospitals, laboratories and insurance companies, she has written a bluntly critical account of her experiences, both economic and medical, titled Sick and Tired.

In her analysis of the American employer-based heath insurance model, which Jorgensen describes its development as a fluke of history.

That, in turn, fostered the development of the current “fee for service” medical system, which Jorgensen sees as vulnerable to corruption, and horribly wasteful.

Coming from a European perspective, the Danish economist shares in the general distain for a health care system that excludes millions of citizens. But she says the reform measures most widely under discussion in Washington would do little to fix a deeply flawed system.