Leaders of local progressive and labor organizations are encouraging their members and concerned citizens to join in Jobs not Cuts" rallies that will be held in Louisville, Lexington, and Jeffersonville, IN on Wednesday, August 10th.
According to Sandy Knauer, coordinator of the Louisville / Southern Indiana MoveOn Council, "the rallies are joint efforts of MoveOn.org, the AFL-CIO, and a host of other organizations coming together" in support of a movement they call "Rebuild the Dream". The rallies will be part of a national day of action that will see actions in over a hundred cities across the nation.
Rikka Wallin, coordinator of Lexington MoveOn, says that "a big focus of these rallies will be introducing our congressional representatives to the new 'Contract for the American Dream'".
The Contract for the American Dream was created by over 130,000 Americans who contributed and prioritized over 25,000 ideas online and in meetings in every state. According to Knauer, "The result was a set of priorities for moving the nation forward that stand in stark contrast to what many progressives feel is the defeatist and counter-productive platforms of the far-right."
Modeled conceptually after the conservative "Contract for America" in 1994, this document sets forth a vision for rebuilding the American Dream that is based on liberty and justice for all, that America is not "broke" but out of balance, and that it is right that "those who do well in America should do well by America".
Among the policies laid out in the contract, and that organizers say will be important anchors of the rallies Wednesday, are:
INVEST IN AMERICA’S INFRASTRUCTURE.
Rebuild our crumbling bridges, dams, levees, ports, water and
sewer lines, railways, roads and public transit. We must invest in
high-speed Internet and a modern, energy-saving electric grid.
These investments will create good jobs and rebuild America. To
help finance these projects, we need national and state
OFFER MEDICARE FOR ALL. We should expand
Medicare so it’s available to all Americans, and reform it to
provide even more cost-effective, quality care. The Affordable
Care Act is a good start and we must implement it – but it’s not
enough. We can save trillions of dollars by joining every other
industrialized country – paying much less for health care while
getting the same or better results.
RETURN TO FAIRER TAX RATES. End, once and
for all, the Bush-era tax giveaways for the rich, which the rest of
us – or our kids – must pay eventually. Also, we must outlaw
corporate tax havens and tax breaks for shipping jobs overseas.
Lastly, with millionaires and billionaires taking a growing share
of our country’s wealth, we should add new tax brackets for those making more than $1 million each year.
TAX WALL STREET SPECULATION. A tiny fee of
1/20th of 1% on each Wall Street trade would raise tens of
billions of dollars annually with little impact on actual
investment. This would reduce speculation, “flash trading,” and
outrageous bankers’ bonuses – and we’d have a lot more money
to spend on Main Street job creation.
STRENGTHEN DEMOCRACY. We need clean,
fair elections – where no one’s right to vote can be taken away,
and where money doesn’t buy you your own member of
Congress. We must ban anonymous political influence, slam shut
the lobbyists’ revolving door in D.C. and publicly finance
elections. Immigrants who want to join in our democracy deserve
a clear path to citizenship. We must stop giving corporations the
rights of people when it comes to our elections. And we must
ensure our judiciary’s respect for the Constitution. Together, we
will reclaim our democracy to get our country back on track.
Knauer and Wallin confirmed that any members of the public who want to see the focus in Washington shift from cutting to jobs are invited to attend and participate in the rallies. "It is helpful if people who are coming register with us online so we have an idea how many people to expect.", Wallin added. She provided the link http://civic.moveon.org/event/jobsnotcuts/ to register for any of the rallies anywhere in the country.
Full disclosure: The author is a volunteer leader with MoveOn.org.