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Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Five Ways to Fight Corporate Evil, #2

1. Donate Something for the Holidays

This holiday season, it's important for everyone to give something to those less fortunate. I consider myself rather poor but I've decided that even I must do something, no matter how small. All of us seating in front of computers have, at the minimum, plenty of food, a place to live and power. We take these things for granted but many Americans are forced to do without. Corporate Evil is the cause of poverty in America and one great way to fight Corporate Evil is to help solve poverty. I'll be donating some food through my workplace; I urge you to find a similar outlet. However, be weary about who you give to. I specifically recommend avoiding the Salvation Army because of their homophobic hiring practices.

2. Ship Your Packages With the Postal Service, Forget UPS and FedEx

I know we all hate going to the Post Office. The lines can be long and the service may be slow. Nevertheless, it's infinitely better than helping support a Purveyor of Corporate Evil such as UPS and FedEx. FedEx donates 71% of their political contributions to the Republican Party. That's not chump change either -- FedEx gave over $1,000,000 last year to the Republicans. FedEx has gotten into serious trouble for racial bias and they refuse to offer domestic partner benefits to their employees. UPS, meanwhile, gave even more money to the GOP last year. 72% of UPS' contributions went to the Republicans for a staggering total of over $1.5 million dollars. Both of these companies are providing essential capital to the Republicans in their war on the common man. The U.S. Postal Service, meanwhile, doesn't donate to either political party and is a quasi-independent agency of the Federal Government. The USPS is the 3rd largest employer in the United States, so money spent there helps save American jobs.

3. Join ATLA

ATLA is the American Trial Lawyers Association. Even non lawyers should join this great group. Right now, the Republicans want to limit access to the courtroom at all costs. They want to prevent those injured from getting their "make whole" recovery because the ones doing the injuring are mostly giant corporations. Since the Republican Party exists only to further the interests of these massive corporations, they want to save their campaign donors money at all costs. A key component to any democracy is the ability of citizens to have fair access to the judicial system. So-called "tort reform" should really be called "Limiting damage awards to save wrongdoers money." ATLA is fighting this evil movement with all its might and they need our support. A student membership is only $15 per year and looks great on your resume. Please join now.

4. Email Bush and Tell Him to Stop Breaking the Law

Yesterday, President Bush gave an appalling press conference where he admitted to an impeachable offense and promised to keep doing more. The reality, however, is that President Bush has no legal authority for his spying. The same group of Republicans who were infuriated over President Clinton's supposed disrespect for the rule of law have no problem with Bush's flagrant violation. E-mail President Bush and tell him to stop breaking the law. Here's my e-mail:

Dear President Bush,

In recent days you have admitted to authorizing warrantless wiretaps of American citizens. You have done so despite the 1978 Foreign Intelligence Survelliance Act (FISA) that requires the Executive to go to a secret court to obtain these types of wiretaps. Although you imply that you had no other way to conduct the spying, the law allowed you to obtain authorization through a secret court whose findings would never become public. The head of this court, Judge David Sentelle of the D.C. Circuit, is a close ally of the Republican Party and would have certainly granted any authorization that you requested.

You explictly stated in your 12/18 speech and 12/19 press conference that the Constitution and the Congressional authorization of force gave you the legal authority to violate FISA. This is despite your speech on April 20, 2004 when you explicitly asserted "When we're talking about chasing down terrorists, we're talking about getting a court order before we do so." Neither the authorization of force nor the Constitution says that you may violate FISA and authorize warrantless wiretaps against anyone you please.

The concern on my behalf is that you didn't go to the secret court because you sought warrantless wiretaps against your political enemies. The keeping of an enemy list dates back to another Republican president who also flagrantly violated the law. As an American citizen, I demand that you, President Bush, adhere to the rule of law and stop subverting the courts and obtaining warrantless wiretaps illegally. Mr. Bush, the young people of this nation need to know that their President has respect for the law and authority. The message this sends our young people is frightening -- it's ok to break the law.

I hope you consider this letter thoughtfully and consider the impacts of your actions upon this great nation.


Michael Alexander, A Concerned American Citizen

5. Join the United for Peace and Justice Legislative Action network

It's obviously time to leave Iraq. Even war hawk Rep. Murtha has called for our withdrawl. One of the best organizations that is fighting for us to leave Iraq is the United for Peace and Justice Legislative Action Network. Follow the link and join the network. You'll get e-mails notifying you of ways to fight the war and progress the group has made. It's not spam, trust me. We don't have much control over how wars are fought, so we need to band together to speak in one collective voice.

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