Women deported by Trump face deadly welcome from street gangs in El Salvador

It is clear, he does not care what happens to them or El Salvador

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Hundreds of young women are killed every year and many face sexual violence in the world’s most dangerous land. Now the president wants to send 200,000 more Salvadorans back home

Inside an apartment block in San Salvador beneath the shadow of the volcano that dominates the city skyline, 20 girls aged between 14 and 18 are in hiding, fearing for their lives. Recently deported to the country of their birth from the US by Donald Trump as part of his evolving immigration clampdown, the teenagers are wanted dead by the street gangs that make El Salvador the most homicidal place on Earth.

Survival necessitates drastic measures when the Mara Salvatrucha, or MS-13, or its rival 18th Street gang want you murdered. First, the girls – branded traitors for daring leave El Salvador to set up home in America – are given radical makeovers; new haircuts and new clothes along with sunglasses that are rarely removed. Then they learn to talk differently, walk differently. All trace of their previous existence is erased. Travel is arranged using bulletproof cars with tinted windows. Finally, the safe house is placed on a short-term lease; the slightest intelligence that the gangs have identified its whereabouts and they’re gone.

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Mark Wahlberg donates $1.5m reward for film reshoots to Time’s Up fund

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Actor makes donation in name of co-star Michelle Williams, who was paid less than $1,000 for the All the Money in the World reshoots

The actor Mark Wahlberg has agreed to donate the $1.5m he made for reshoots on the film All the Money in the World to the sexual misconduct defense initiative Time’s Up.

Related: Ridley Scott on erasing Kevin Spacey from his new film: ‘He’s a very good actor. It’s a pity’

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Scramble Is On To Care For Kids If Insurance Coverage Lapses

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Dr. Mahendra Patel, a pediatric cancer doctor, has begun giving away medications to some of his young patients, determined not to disrupt their treatments for serious illnesses like leukemia. He’s worried Congress will fail to renew funding soon for a health program that pays for the care of millions of children across the country.

In his 35 years of practice, Patel, of San Antonio, has seen the lengths to which parents will go for their critically ill children. He has seen couples divorce just to qualify for Medicaid coverage, something he fears will happen if the Children’s Health Insurance Program is axed. “They are looking at you and begging for their child’s life,” he said.

The months-long failure on Capitol Hill to pass a long-term extension to CHIP, which provides health coverage to 9 million lower-income children, portends serious health consequences for many of them.

About 1.7 million children in 20 states and the District of Columbia could be at risk of losing their CHIP coverage in February because of the funding shortfall, according to a report released Wednesday by the Georgetown University Center for Children and Families.

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Frankie Freeman dies at 101

freeman-frankiesiue*100xx1500-1500-0-38.Prominent St. Louis lawyer and civil rights leader Frankie Muse Freeman has died. She was 101.

Freeman died Friday. She served as the lead counsel and won the landmark case against the St. Louis Housing Authority, which put an end to legal racial discrimination in public housing.

In 1946, she was the first woman to be appointed to the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights.

In 2012, the St. Louis Business Journal named Freeman among the 250 Most Influential St. Louisans.

In Nov. 2017, a bronze statue…

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Why America Needs a Progressive Democratic Party

When the extreme right controls the government, calls that salvation can only come from the extreme left… feed more victories for the extreme right. Next a call for extreme moderates? Forget just trying to make things work and being fair – gotta grind your opponents into the dust! Progressive Democratic Party

Progressive Democratic PartyI’ve been less than enthusiastic about the Democratic Party since the days Bill Clinton served as president. That’s an odd admission for a registered Democrat and a kid who grew up supporting the Party. What’s more, my reticence was a gut reaction initially, and nothing more.

Today I know why I reacted as I did. But the underlying reason why I felt that way years ago is still in play. America needs a strongly positioned, mainstream progressive party—a party that’s different in kind—not degree—from the Republicans.

That’s not happening. Worse yet, it hasn’t happened for decades.

Clinton’s policies on incarceration and welfare punished African Americans. Obama’s defense policies were drawn from Bush’s hymnal. And the current “resist and oppose” movement is more about Trump than about advancing progressive policies.

“There are three generations of neoliberals in play now,” a colleague wrote me recently, “the first generation of which was born in the 1960s.”

Over time, the Democratic mainstream has become more neoliberal and less progressive. Bill Clinton showed the way. Many Dems followed willingly and, since then, they’ve “kept the party going.”

He’s spot-on. Over time, the Democratic mainstream has become more neoliberal and less progressive. Bill Clinton showed the way. Many Dems followed willingly and, since then, they’ve “kept the party going.”

What I’ve just asserted is the theme of a just-published article, Ryan Cooper’s The Decline and Fall of Neoliberalism in the Democratic Party (This Week, January 8, 2018). Cooper predicts that we’re close to the end of a neoliberally-dominated Democratic Party.

In an easy-to-read style, Cooper describes neoliberalism—what it is, how it came into being, and how it has evolved—with special emphasis on its application in the Democratic Party. The treatment includes why “New Deal Democrats” fell from grace, how and why the Reagan Revolution held sway, and—very importantly—how (for the better part of the last three decades) the Democrats have moved more and more to the political center, sometimes to the center-left and (shockingly) at other times to the center-right.

For years that transition wasn’t problematic, at least as many interpreted it. Bill Clinton had economic success as president and Obama addressed the massive economic mess he inherited. But how long would it take to uncover underlying issues? “Incredibly,” Cooper writes, “over and over again during the Obama years the party elite proved itself overly sympathetic to the concerns of the market.”

That didn’t become a political liability for the Democrats because Obama was, as Cooper describes him, “a magnificent political talent, the finest national politician in raw talent since FDR.” As long as Obama remained at head of the party, Cooper asserts, “sheer charisma and moderately good policy record” got him though.

But that record was the record. By the time Obama left The White House, Cooper says, signals were flashing red. “The United States was once again a country which functions mostly on behalf of a tiny capitalist elite,” Cooper writes. “It has the same extreme inequality, the same bloated, crisis-prone financial sector, the same corruption, and the same political backlash to the status quo and rising extremist factions.”

You’d think those would be outcomes of a Republican regime. Ironically, it set the stage for one. Enter Populist Trump.

During the campaign, Hillary had trouble responding to Trump via the power of personality as Obama would have been able to do. And, worse yet, for many voters Hillary represented ills that were becoming obvious and several factors that people believed contributed to the slide. “Virtually handpicked by the party elite,” Cooper writes, “and promising to continue and build on the accomplishments of Obama — (Clinton) was the candidate of Democratic Party neoliberalism, for better and worse.”

And it was far worse.

What strikes me today is why so many Democrats still resist moving to the Progressive left. I don’t see that possibility in political terms only. I also see it as a matter of gigantic need.

I follow the OECD (Organization of Economic Co-operation and Development) analyses of the world’s 35 industrialized countries. Among those peers, America’s standing over time has moved down over time—significantly and often shockingly so. Democrats should be all over the downward trend, but they’re not—except for the Progressive few.

Consider news released just a few days ago. One headline read, “Why the United States is ‘the most dangerous of wealthy nations for a child to be born into‘” Why? The infant mortality rate in this country (2001-2010) was 76% higher than the rate among the 19 richest countries in the world.

That’s an intolerable outcome. The Republicans aren’t going to address it. The Democrats aren’t making it a priority, even though they should.

A Progressive Democratic Party would.

Frank Fear

The post Why America Needs a Progressive Democratic Party appeared first on LA Progressive.

Suspect in Kansas ‘swatting’ death charged with involuntary manslaughter

And the police? no responsibility for prank death?

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  • Hoax call reportedly prompted by online game led to death of man
  • DA still reviewing possible charges against police officer who fired

A California man accused of making a hoax emergency call that led to the fatal police shooting of an unarmed man in Kansas has been charged with involuntary manslaughter.

Related: ‘Swatting’ death: accused man has made other false reports to police, officials say

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Walmart quietly lays off thousands of workers after bonus announcement

Stay awake! Walmart quietly lays off thousands of workers after bonus announcement:

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Thursday morning, Walmart had a flashy announcement: Thanks to corporate tax cuts, it was giving its employees bonuses of up to $1,000. Walmart and President Trump pointed to the announcement as proof that the corporate tax cuts are really a boon to working-class Americans.

Great news, as a result of our TAX CUTS & JOBS ACT! http://pic.twitter.com/SLvhLxP3Jl

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 11, 2018

This announcement, as ThinkProgress reported earlier, was much more complicated than it first sounds.

Walmart employees are eligible for the $1,000 bonus only if they’ve worked at the company for 20 years. Most Walmart employees, of course, haven’t worked there that long. Those employees will receive a smaller bonus based on seniority. Walmart didn’t explain exactly how the sliding scale will work but said the total value of the bonuses will be $400 million. Walmart has about 2.1 million employees, which works out to be an average bonus of about $190.

The one-time bonus Walmart announced this morning amounts to just over 2 percent of the total value of the tax cut to the company.

In the fiscal year 2017, Walmart had pre-tax profits of about $20.5 billion and paid an effective federal tax rate of around 30 percent. With a new corporate tax rate of 21 percent, the corporate tax cut is worth at least $1.85 billion to Walmart every year. Since this cut is permanent, the true benefits to Walmart will grow much larger over time. But it’s safe to say that, over 10 years, this corporate tax cut will be worth over $18 billion to Walmart.

But now it appears the announcement was timed carefully to cover for thousands of unannounced layoffs.

Business Insider reports that today, Walmart is abruptly closing numerous Sam’s Clubs stores across the United States. In some cases “employees were not informed of the closures prior to showing up to work on Thursday” and “learned that their store would be closing when they found the store’s doors locked and a notice announcing the closure.”

Sam’s Club shutdown? Employees at this S Loop store tell me they showed up to work and were told store is closed effective today. Sign on door says the same thing. Hearing other stores also affected. Waiting for answers from parent company, Walmart #khou11 http://pic.twitter.com/RtbY7EhiIK

— Jason Miles (@JMilesKHOU) January 11, 2018

Walmart confirmed the abrupt closings and offered an explanation of sorts on Twitter. “Closing clubs is never easy,” the company said through its verified corporate account.

After a thorough review of our existing portfolio, we’ve decided to close a series of clubs and better align our locations with our strategy. Closing clubs is never easy and we’re committed to working with impacted members and associates through this transition.

— Sam’s Club (@SamsClub) January 11, 2018

Business Insider identified at least 68 stores across the country that closed today. Three of the stores are located in Hurricane ravaged Puerto Rico. More stores are slated to be closed in the coming days.

Walmart’s behavior is part of a pattern of corporate misdirection related to the GOP tax cuts. AT&T and Comcast both announced bonuses for their employees while also laying off thousands.


While Trump talks about a “jobs boom,” job growth was slower in 2017 than in any year since 2010.

MULTIPLE OTHER COMPANIES HAVE DONE THIS AS WELL INCLUDING COMCAST AND AT&T.