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Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Monday, January 30, 2012

The GOP Hates America

The GOP hates America and because of it they treat it badly. They use it as their cash machine draining all the financial resources for their own predatory needs.
Romney is a perfect example of such predatory hatred. He made his fortune as a predator gutting American businesses of their assets and production potential, as well as their workforce, to write-off those losses, when he administrated Bain Capital, and then, moved those funds off-shore creating bond funds in the Cayman Islands. Then, with millions of dollars in profits from his predatory behavior, he invested offshore and deposited his winnings in Swiss bank accounts.
Now, that is a true American!! Millard, the-Willard-and-a-rat-by-any-other-name, Romney is an honorable Mormon, or is it moron. I am not sure.
On the campaign trail he rants about how Obama has not brought enough jobs back on-line in the country. Well, here are the facts: after an 8 million loss of jobs at the end of the Bush administration, under Obama there has been growth, although slow. In the last 29 consecutives months, there has been job growth in the manufacturing sector. All throughout 2010, there has been a steady growth in jobs. Under President Obama, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the economy has added nearly three million private sector jobs over 21 months of consecutive job growth.
The facts are that the GOP has done more than any other political force to ship jobs overseas. They have outsourced the biggest production lines to China. Steve Jobs once told Obama that he would never bring back the outsourced Apple jobs. The price differential for a Chinese made iPhone and a possible U.S. made iPhone would only be around $70.00, but what has happened in China is much more significant.
Steve Jobs told Obama that the entire supply-chain has left the U.S. and now exists in China. When Jobs was developing the first iPhone, the lens/screen was plastic and was easily scratched so he approached the U.S. company, Corning. They could not easily build a facility to make the lens in glass, so Apple went to China.
This one Chinese company had already begun construction of a glass cutting factory very close to the iPhone factory. This company had received operational capital to begin construction from the Chinese government. The Chinese government is the seed and fertilizer for the growth of the production plant. So, in just a matter of weeks, the glass cutting was being done in China.
Jobs also told Obama that the entire supply-chain of parts to make the iPhone was all in the same city, and for the most part, blocks from the Apple production line.
In the United States, the GOP, not unlike Romney and Bain Capital, gutted the supply-chain and end suppliers within the U.S. and outsourced it to China. This is why they hate America. They see more profits in the Communist supply-chain of China than in their own home country. And, the very nation the GOP would like to control. Sadly, they have no loyalty to this nation and have a history of destroying it. The GOP rant hatefully how government should get out of the way of the private sector and should stop using taxpayer dollars to create jobs, when, in fact, this is exactly what the Chinese government does. They invest billions upon billions of dollars in growing industry and infrastructure.
What the GOP hates, they love in China, which makes them very, very rich.
The GOP is a predatory organization with Romney leading the way. We have now heard the GOP’s chief Kool-Aid drinking African-American Florida representative-Allen West calling for Democrats to leave the country. How funny!! It is the GOP who have left the country for the good-‘ole Communist/capitalist China. This is the GOP’s corporate model, but they won’t admit it! This is why the GOP should be called the Grand-‘Ole-Psychopathic Party!!!
President Obama talks about bringing the jobs back. Nice pipe dream, but when the supply-chain lives in China, and our infrastructure has gone to crumbling because the Boehner/McConnell/Tea Party GOP has said “Fuck You” to America, the dream exists only on a pipe.
The Chinese exploit their workers and offer little to no protections, something even a non-union shop would grieve to the Labor Relations Board. Tell me that the American worker would work 12 hours per day for $70 per week and live in a dorm provided by the corporation, and I will tell you that the GOP said it was so. This sounds like the return of the Robber Baron era.
The GOP is made up of a bunch of psychopathic perverts wanting to have a nation of indentured workers this is why they so hate universal health care. With universal health care: private or public (Medicare for all), every worker would have mobility to leave a lower paying job for a higher one without losing health care for him/her and family. It would also allow people to start their own business without the fear of having no health care. This would raise all boats in this nation, but the GOP hates this idea. They want to control workers at any cost.
Romney believes in this philosophy, as well. He hates America in spite of what he says.
And now I come to the biggest Humpty Dumpty on the campaign trail. Mr. Fig Newton Ging-grinch himself!!!!
This guy is so delusional and filled with bizarre ideas that they ooze out of his pores like the sweating poisons that soak into his clothing after walking a flight of stairs!
He is the Star-Wars come back kid!! He is Reagan morphed into the evil discard. He says that after his second term as president, there will be a colony built on the surface of the Moon with Americans living there writing chronicles to be read on the comic pages of the Earth-based newspapers.
Such a project would likely end up costing several trillion dollars, no doubt, not by the private sector, but by the public sector. He says it would be a public-private partnership, but why would any corporation invest in a pipedream that might fail without the financial guarantee of the US taxpayers? Who would build the shuttles to transport the workers, and living modules to build a colony? Mr. Fig Newton does realize that it would have to be government.
Is this how Figgie would create a sustainable manufacturing society in the U.S. via the process of moving it to the Moon? Nothing like sucking on fantastical dreams coating a pipe. Nothing about how he would rebuild the nation’s infrastructure in order to rebuild a nation of railroads operating at a much higher speed in order to shuttle products from one market to another—rebuilding the nation’s supply-chain grid, along with the electrical grid.
This is why the GOP is delusional, and filled with insane psychopaths, who actually believe what they say. That is how dangerously sick they are.
I am not saying that President Obama is a saintly character. By no means!!! Obama is a jerk, too. He has continued many of LilboyBush’s fascist policies, but next to the totally insane idiots on the Reich, he looks perfectly sane. This demonstrates just how bad the State of the Union has gotten.

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Occupy Oakland Arrests Total 300 After Volatile Day

For anyone to believe that the police did not start the fight is just drinking way too much Kool-Aid! The police get freaked out when there are 2000 pissed off people angry at the failed system. The police are NOT in control. The mayor has lost all control of them. It is very likely the police forced the violence in order to avoid a blockade of the convention center. As we already know, the police plant their own to activate violence.
OAKLAND, Calif. -- Dozens of police maintained a late-night guard around City Hall following daylong protests that resulted in 300 arrests. Occupy Oakland demonstrators broke into the historic building and burned a U.S. flag, as officers earlier fired tear gas to disperse people throwing rocks and tearing down fencing at a convention center.
Saturday's protests – the most turbulent since Oakland police forcefully dismantled an Occupy encampment in November – came just days after the group said it planned to use a vacant building as a social center and political hub and threatened to try to shut down the port, occupy the airport and take over City Hall.
An exasperated Mayor Jean Quan, who faced heavy criticism for the police action last fall, called on the Occupy movement to "stop using Oakland as its playground."
"People in the community and people in the Occupy movement have to stop making excuses for this behavior," Quan said.
Protesters clashed with police throughout the day, at times throwing rocks, bottles and other objects at officers. And police responded by deploying smoke, tear gas and bean bag rounds, City Administrator Deanna Santanta said.
Interim Police Chief Howard Jordan said about 300 arrests were made.
"These demonstrators stated their intention was to provoke officers and engage in illegal activity and that's exactly what has occurred today," Santana said.
The group assembled outside City Hall late Saturday morning and marched through the streets, disrupting traffic as they threatened to take over the vacant Henry Kaiser Convention Center.
The protesters walked to the vacant convention center, where some started tearing down perimeter fencing and "destroying construction equipment" shortly before 3 p.m., police said.
Police said they issued a dispersal order and used smoke and tear gas after some protesters pelted them with bottles, rocks, burning flares and other objects.
The number of demonstrators swelled as the day wore on, with afternoon estimates ranging from about 1,000 to 2,000 people.
A majority of the arrests came after police took scores of protesters into custody as they marched through the city's downtown, with some entering a YMCA building, said Sgt. Jeff Thomason, a police spokesman.
Quan said that at one point, many protesters forced their way into City Hall, where they burned flags, broke an electrical box and damaged several art structures, including a recycled art exhibit created by children.
She blamed the destruction on a small "very radical, violent" splinter group within Occupy Oakland.
"This is not a situation where we had a 1,000 peaceful people and a few violent people. If you look at what's happening today in terms of destructing property, throwing at and charging the police, it's almost like they are begging for attention and hoping that the police will make an error."
Dozens of officers surrounded City Hall, while others swept the inside of the building looking for protesters who had broken into the building, then ran out of the building with American flags before officers arrived.
The protest group issued an email criticizing police, saying "Occupy Oakland's building occupation, an act of constitutionally protected civil disobedience was disrupted by a brutal police response today."
Michael Davis, 32, who is originally from Ohio and was in the Occupy movement in Cincinnati, said Saturday was a very hectic day that originally started off calm but escalated when police began using "flash bangs, tear gas, smoke grenades and bean bags."
"What could've been handled differently is the way the Oakland police came at us," Davis said. "We were peaceful."
City leaders joined Quan in criticizing the protesters.
"City Hall is closed for the weekend. There is no excuse for behavior we've witnessed this evening," City Council President Larry Reid said during a news briefing Saturday.
Oakland Councilman Ignacio De La Fuente, echoed Reid's sentiments and said that what was going on amounts to "domestic terrorism."
The national Occupy Wall Street movement, which denounces corporate excess and economic inequality, began in New York City in the fall but has been largely dormant lately.
Oakland, New York and Los Angeles were among the cities with the largest and most vocal Occupy protests early on. The demonstrations ebbed after those cities used force to move out hundreds of demonstrators who had set up tent cities.
In Oakland, the police department received heavy criticism for using force to break up earlier protests. Quan was among the critics, but on Saturday, she seemed to have changed her tune.
"Our officers have been very measured," Quan said. "Were there some mistakes made? There may be. I would say the Oakland police and our allies, so far a small percentage of mistakes. "But quite frankly, a majority of protesters who were charging the police were clearly not being peaceful.
Earlier this month, a court-appointed monitor submitted a report to a federal judge that included "serious concerns" about the department's handling of the Occupy protests.
Jordan said late Saturday that he was in "close contact" with the federal monitor during the protests.
Quan added, "If the demonstrators think that because we are working more closely with the monitor now that we won't do what we have to do to uphold the law and try keep people safe in this city, they're wrong."

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

George Carlin on The American Dream

Nothing has changed!!!


Monday, January 23, 2012

Occupy San Francisco Moves On The Banks

From Alternet. org by Gary Kamiya 1-22-12

Occupy San Francisco Takes the Fight to Local Banks in Ambitious Next Step for Movement

After a brief hibernation, a refocused movement takes aim at corporate America--specifically, Wells Fargo and Bank of America on "Wall Street West."
Act II of the Occupy Wall Street movement, San Francisco version, kicked off on a rainy, blustery Friday in the heart of the city’s financial district. Targeting specific corporations like Wells Fargo and Bank of America and emphasizing real, tangible issues like home foreclosures, affordable health care and education as well as broader ones like the Supreme Court’s Citizens United decision, several hundred protesters – the exact number was impossible to estimate – fanned out across the city, snarling traffic, getting arrested, holding sidewalk teach-ins, and generally serving notice that after its brief winter hibernation, the Occupy movement was back and kicking.

Occupy’s first act, the Tent Phase, ended in early December, when city authorities raided its urban camp at Justin Herman Plaza near the Ferry Building. But even before the tents were removed, it had become clear that the movement needed both to develop new tactics and deepen its strategic vision.
“After the raid, when our attention was no longer focused on [the encampment], people turned back to their neighborhoods and their campuses,” said David Solnit, who is part of a direct action working group associated with Occupy SF. “We started Occupy Bernal Heights [a multi-ethnic, mixed-income neighborhood on the edge of the Mission District], and we had 65 people at the first meeting. We went door to door meeting folks facing foreclosures. We got meetings with mid-level people at Wells Fargo Bank.”
Solnit – who is the brother of San Francisco writer Rebecca Solnit – said that OccupySF Housing, a housing-related spinoff of the movement, had held marches in four neighborhoods and succeeded in saving four homes from foreclosure.
“We’re more diversified now, but more powerful than when all our eggs were in one basket,” Solnit said. “Gene Sharp came up with 198 different methods of nonviolent action. Camping out is one tactic. We still have 197 more tactics to go through, and another 500 to create.”
At 6:20 a.m., in pitch darkness, with a miserable rain pelting down in front of the enormous 52-story monolith of 555 California, it seemed like a good idea for Occupy to come up with a new tactic immediately. The schedule on the Occupy Wall St. West web site  had announced that there would be a wacky 6 a.m. protest against Goldman Sachs, featuring a squid fry (“bring your own frying pan”) and protesters dressed as squids. (The squid theme derived from Rolling Stone writer Matt Taibbi’s famous description of Goldman Sachs as “a great vampire squid wrapped around the face of humanity.”) But no one seemed to be giving out fried calamari – not that anyone could have digested it at that ungodly hour — and there were only four protesters standing near the entrance. They were dwarfed by a phalanx of waiting police and TV journalists.
The last person you would expect to find standing in a bedraggled squid costume in front of a financial district skyscraper at six in the morning would be a 69-year-old retired psychology professor. But the Occupy movement is full of surprises. The human squid, Eleanor Levine, said, “I’m out here to bring attention to the irresponsible financial practices of Goldman Sachs. I also want to bring attention to the concept of corporate personhood [which was behind the Supreme Court ruling in Citizens United]. Corporations are not people. This company played a role in bringing not just the country but the world to financial ruin. People have to face up to what Goldman Sachs has done. Their CEO made $28 million.” Asked if the dreadful weather had prevented more people from joining the protest, Levine said calmly, “Yes, the rain put a damper on the turnout, but more will come.” Her pink tentacles waving, she walked cheerfully off.

I approached a mustachioed man in a yellow poncho inscribed with the words “Money 4 Housing and Education, not 4 Banks and Corporations.” Alex Carlson, 34, was a paramedic who said the biggest reason he came out was to protest America’s lack of educational opportunities. “I couldn’t get into school just to get an EMI license. I had to beg a teacher to let me into his class. Nursing was my real goal, but there’s no money for nursing schools. It’s crazy because there’s a nursing shortage and there’s going to be a crisis of care when the bay boomers die off.”
Carlson said he had come out at the crack of dawn in the rain because he felt he had to.
“Like everyone else I’m just trying to carve out a little life for myself, but my knife is getting shorter and shorter,” he said. “I’m not a crazy activist person. I have a wife and a young son. Camping out isn’t an option for me. But I was able to come out today, so I did. And I’m proud.”
I walked down a block to a building housing Wells Fargo, where people protesting the bank’s role in the national foreclosure crisis had chained themselves in front of the entrances on all four sides. In one of the entrances, about eight people were squeezed in, their arms inside big yellow PVC pipes that were connected together. A policeman came up and politely informed them they were creating a public health risk and would be arrested if they didn’t leave. Dozens of police waited on the corner.
A woman with a bullhorn shouted slogans. A wildly energetic street band, three saxes, a trumpet, a big bass drum and a snare, played surreally cheerful Kurt Weill-like tunes, their vaguely Weimar sound oddly appropriate.
A fresh-faced young woman with glasses was sitting among the crowd in the entrance, with a sign that said “Give us our homes back.” I asked her why she was there. “My parents had their home in Southern California foreclosed,” she said. Her said her name was Sarah Lombardo and she was 28 years old. “They couldn’t make their payments because of medical costs. My mom had breast cancer and my dad had a stroke. They were told to leave in two weeks and our house was auctioned off. Now they’re living in an apartment, but their credit was destroyed so they had to pay three times the normal deposit.”
Lombardo said her mom was a purchasing agent and her dad was a factory worker. “I’m the first one in my family to go to college.” She said she came out because she wanted “to put a face to the statistics.” It was a face that looked like it belonged to the girl next door, or to your daughter.
She said that now that she had finished college, it made it possible for her to be arrested. “It’s for a good cause.”
I asked her if she had ever been arrested before. “No.” Was she afraid? “No, I’m not scared.”
Later, behind a cordon of police, I watched as protesters on the north side of the building were arrested, frisked and loaded into a paddy wagon. I rode off on my bike to cover some more actions. When I came back, Lombardo and the rest of the group of people in the doorway had been arrested.
Back up at 555 California, beyond the big turd-in-a-plaza artwork jokingly called the “banker’s heart,” I came upon an older man in a suit, carrying a sign that said “Give Us Our City Back.” I was intrigued: he was definitely not the usual Occupy protester. But when I asked him who he was, he turned out to be even more unusual than I could have expected. He was Warren Langley, the 69-year-old former head of the Pacific Stock Exchange.
What brought a man with his background out to protest?
“I was in the industry. I worked for an option trading firm that was sold to Goldman Sachs. So I played the game on the other side. But I have two grandkids and two daughters, and I became increasingly concerned that their future wouldn’t offer them the same opportunities that I had as a young man. The income inequities in our society are a huge problem.”
Langley said he first heard about the Occupy movement from his pal Ben Cohen, of Ben and Jerry’s ice cream. “He was scooping ice cream for them in New York. And he told me, ‘These are the real deal.’ So one day I was eating lunch at the Ferry Building, and I walked across the street to the camp and started talking to these young people. And they were the real deal. They’re folks who lost their jobs, or are just out of school and can’t get a job. I could bring my credibility to the movement, so I decided to get involved.”
Langley decried the deregulation of the financial industry, in particular the repeal of the Glass-Steagall Act that eroded the wall between banks and investment houses and gave birth to the wild, insanely profitable speculation
that ultimately dealt the world’s economy a devastating blow. “They bet our money and then we paid off the bookmaker.”
I asked Langley what his former colleagues in high finance thought about the Occupy Movement.
“Well, there are some who say, ‘They’re a bunch of whiners and need to get a job.’ But those are the ones who haven’t actually talked to the people in the movement. There are others who are more open-minded. I know one guy, very wealthy, who told me, ‘What’s their plan? I’m ready to give them $250,000 if they have a plan.’ And I told him, ‘It’s not their job to give you a plan. They’re hurting.’ So whether it’s job opportunities, or better health care, or fairer taxes, we need through the political system to come up with a plan. It isn’t their job. He didn’t get it. But his kids, who are also very wealthy, were more sympathetic. It’s a generational thing.”
Langley went on to say that Occupy was sharpening its ideas. “It’s moving to get a more specific message across, from ‘We’re hurting’ to “This is what’s hurting us.’ He said he didn’t see the Occupy movement ever aligning with any political party. “Chuck Schumer does as much damage as John Boehner. In the end, it’s about occupying people’s minds, so people who aren’t down here will see that the system is not fair.
There was also a nurse-led protest across town against the big medical group California Pacific Medical Center, which RN Jane Sandoval said is shifting resources away from poorer patients. Another nurse, Eileen Prendiville, said CMPC is emblematic of America’s broken, for-profit health care system, even though it is nominally a non-profit.
If the new Occupy is meatier and more substantive, it still thrives on spectacle and encounters with authority– and the latter can be a double-edged sword. After one nasty encounter outside 555 California when a young guy who engaged in a scuffle with the cops when they rushed forward was arrested, quite a few people in the crowd began shouting “fuck you, pigs!”, “you slaves!”, “pigs go home!” and “your warrant is to serve your corporate masters” to the police, probably not winning any hearts and minds in the process. No one told them to can the Black Panther rhetoric. At the same time, in one of those weird juxtapositions that Occupy specializes in, across the street stood two gentle souls holding a big black banner that read, “Buddhist Peace and Justice League: May All Beings Be Happy and Secure.”
Based on Friday’s actions – which I only saw part of — Occupy’s new approach seems to have three components.
First, it has become more of a big-tent movement, welcoming outside groups like labor unions. Second, it is taking deliberate, loud, public aim at specific corporate targets, like Goldman Sachs and Bank of America. Perhaps most important, as David Solnit pointed out, it is reinventing itself as a grass roots organization – reaching out to ordinary people who may not know much about the Occupy movement, but whose lives have been devastated by anonymous corporate decisions.
It’s an ambitious, multi-faceted reset, and there’s no way of knowing how effective it will be. Simply camping out and saying “We are the 99 percent” has the downside of being vague, but for that very reason it has an abstract, jarring purity. More specific, targeted protests are more substantive and show the movement is serious, but also make it more conventional. Still, as long as the movement attracts followers as committed, intelligent and impressive as the people I talked to, it will remain a force to be reckoned with. It seems certain to play a role in the national discourse not just during this election season, but for a long time.


Friday, January 20, 2012

The Price of Apple

From by James Kwak

Friday 20 January 2012
by: James Kwak, The Baseline Scenario | Op-Ed
Last week, This American Life ran a story about the Chinese factories that produce Apple products (and a lot of the other electronic devices that fill our lives). It featured Mike Daisey, a writer and performer who traveled to Shenzhen, China, to visit the enormous factories (more than 400,000 people work at Foxconn’s, according to the story*) where electronic products are churned out using huge amounts of manual labor.
I’m sure that most of us already realized, on an intellectual level, that the stuff we buy is made by people overseas who, in general, have much less than we do and work harder than we do, under tougher working conditions. It’s harder to ignore, however, listening to Daisey talk about the long shifts (up to thirty-four hours, apparently), the crippling injuries due to repetitive stress or hazardous chemicals, the crammed dormitories, and the authoritarian rules. At one point an interviewee produces a document, produced by the Labor Relations Board (with the name of the Board on it): it’s a list of “troublemakers” who should be fired at once.
The question that Ira Glass asks at the end is how we should feel about all of this. Although Apple is at the center of the story—at one point Daisey shows his iPad to a man whose hand was destroyed by a machine that makes the iPad, and he called it a “thing of magic”—they seem to do a reasonable job of policing their suppliers and insisting on improvements to working conditions, at least compared to other companies. But still the number of violations doesn’t go down from year to year.
Glass quotes Paul Krugman talking about how sweatshops (in Indonesia, I think), though brutal, were still better than the alternative for the people working in them, and how they contributed to economic development. He also interviews Nicholas Kristof, who agrees that working in these factories is often better than working in rice paddies—especially for young women, who can earn more money and thereby improve their bargaining power. But is that enough? Daisey doesn’t think so.
I have a MacBook Pro and an iPad (and an LG phone, and a Samsung monitor, . . .). While I think OS X is far better than Windows (or Linux if, like me, you’re not a power user), I would gladly switch back if I had confidence that my computer’s manufacturer was an appreciably, demonstrably better employer than Foxconn. And I would pay more, too, just like I pay more for free-range eggs and organic food (which I buy for the environmental impact, not the health benefits). But while there are certification programs that provide some confidence that your coffee isn’t the product of imperial exploitation, I’m not aware of such programs for electronics. Maybe there are already, and I just don’t know about them.
Given that anyone buying Apple products is already paying a hefty price premium, you would think at least some of us would rather pay that premium for better labor protections.
* The TAL staff fact-checked everything they could fact-check in the story, and found only one small error (having to do with the size of the cafeterias).

Here is the This American Life story:

Catholic Leaders Challenge Gingrich and Santorum on Divisive Rhetoric Around Race and Poverty

Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum are being called out for their bigotry and racism. We don't need such regressive thinkers and believers in our government now, or ever!!!! The nation needs to go forward, not backward.

From on 1-19-12

More than 40 national Catholic leaders and prominent theologians at universities across the country released a strongly worded open letter today urging “our fellow Catholics Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum to stop perpetuating ugly racial stereotypes on the campaign trail.”
In the lead up to Saturday’s primary in South Carolina, Newt Gingrich has frequently blasted President Obama as a “food stamp president” and implied that some African Americans are more content to collect welfare benefits than work. Rick Santorum attracted scrutiny for telling Iowa voters he doesn’t want “to make black people’s lives better by giving them somebody else’s money.”
The open letter reminds the two presidential candidates, vying for Christian conservative voters, that U.S. Catholic bishops have called racism an “intrinsic evil” and consistently defend vital government programs such as food stamps and unemployment benefits that help struggling Americans.
The full text of the statement and signatories follow.
An Open Letter to Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum
As Catholic leaders who recognize that the moral scandals of racism and poverty remain a blemish on the American soul, we challenge our fellow Catholics Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum to stop perpetuating ugly racial stereotypes on the campaign trail. Mr. Gingrich has frequently attacked President Obama as a “food stamp president” and claimed that African Americans are content to collect welfare benefits rather than pursue employment. Campaigning in Iowa, Mr. Santorum remarked: “I don’t want to make black people’s lives better by giving them somebody else’s money.” Labeling our nation’s first African-American president with a title that evokes the past myth of “welfare queens” and inflaming other racist caricatures is irresponsible, immoral and unworthy of political leaders.
Some presidential candidates now courting “values voters” seem to have forgotten that defending human life and dignity does not stop with protecting the unborn. We remind Mr. Gingrich and Mr. Santorum that Catholic bishops describe racism as an “intrinsic evil” and consistently defend vital government programs such as food stamps and unemployment benefits that help struggling Americans. At a time when nearly 1 in 6 Americans live in poverty, charities and the free market alone can’t address the urgent needs of our most vulnerable neighbors. And while jobseekers outnumber job openings 4-to-1, suggesting that the unemployed would rather collect benefits than work is misleading and insulting.
As the South Carolina primary approaches, we urge Mr. Gingrich, Mr. Santorum and all presidential candidates to reject the politics of racial division, refrain from offensive rhetoric and unite behind an agenda that promotes racial and economic justice.
Francis X. DoyleAssociate General Secretary
U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (retired)
Sisters of Mercy of the Americas Institute Leadership Team:Sisters Patricia McDermott, RSM (President) Eileen Campbell, RSM Anne Curtis, RSM Mary Pat Gavin, RSM Deborah Troillett, RSM
Sister Pat Farrell, OSFPresident
Leadership Conference of Women Religious
Rev. Bryan N. MassingaleAssociate Professor of Theology
Marquette University
Rev. Clete KileyDirector for Immigration Policy
Rev. Anthony J. Pogorelc,  M.Div., Ph.D.The Catholic University of America
Institute for Policy Research & Catholic Studies
Rev. David Hollenbach, S.J.University Chair in Human Rights and International Justice
Boston College
Sr. Patricia J. Chappell, SNDdeNExecutive Director, Pax Christi USA
Marie DennisCo-President, Pax Christi International
Rev. John F. Kavanaugh S.J.Professor of Philosophy
St. Louis University
Rev. Jim Keenan, S.J.Founders Professor in Theology
Boston College
Rev. Thomas J. Reese, S.J.Senior Fellow
Woodstock Theological Center
Georgetown University
Sister Mary Ellen HowardExecutive Director
Cabrini Clinic, Detroit
Rev. James E. Hug, S.J.President
Center of Concern
Sister Simone CampbellExecutive Director
NETWORK, A Catholic Social Justice Lobby
Steven SchneckDirector
Institute for Policy Research and Catholic Studies
The Catholic University of America
Sister Karen M. Donahue, RSMJustice Team
Sisters of Mercy West Midwest Community
Sister Mary Ann HinsdaleAssoc. Prof. of Theology
Boston College
Tom AllioCleveland Diocesan Social Action Director (retired)
M. Shawn CopelandAssociate Professor of Theology
Boston College
Sister Maria Riley, OPSenior Advisor
Center of Concern
Todd WhitmoreAssociate Professor
Department of Theology
University of Notre Dame
Terrence W. TilleyAvery Cardinal Dulles, S.J., Professor of Catholic Theology
Theology Department
Fordham University, Bronx, NY
Michael E. LeeAssociate Professor
Theology Department
Fordham University, Bronx, NY
Paul LakelandAloysius P. Kelley S.J. Professor of Catholic Studies
Director, Center for Catholic Studies Fairfield University
Lisa Sowle CahillMonan Professor of Theology
Boston College
Eric LeCompteBoard Member
Catholics in Alliance for the Common Good
Tobias WinrightAssociate Professor of Theological Ethics
Saint Louis University
Christopher PramukAssistant Professor of Theology
Xavier University, Cincinnati
John SniegockiAssociate Professor of Christian Ethics
Xavier University, Cincinnati
Kathleen Maas WeigertCarolyn Farrell, BVM Professor of Women and Leadership
Loyola University, Chicago
Daniel K. FinnProfessor of Theology and Economics
St. John’s University, Minnesota
Gerald J. BeyerAssociate Professor of Christian Social Ethics
Department of Theology and Religious Studies
Saint Joseph’s University, Philadelphia
Jeannine Hill FletcherAssociate Professor of Theology
Faculty Director
Dorothy Day Center for Service and Justice
Fordham University, Bronx, NY
Sister Mary Ann HinsdaleAssoc. Prof. of Theology
Boston College
John InglisProfessor and Chair
Department of Philosophy
University of Dayton
Anthony B. SmithAssociate Professor
Department of Religious Studies
University of Dayton
David O’BrienUniversity Professor of Faith and Culture
University of Dayton
William L. PortierMary Ann Spearin Chair of Catholic Theology
University of Dayton
Alex MikulichResearch Fellow
Jesuit Social Research Institute
Loyola University, New Orleans
Susan M. WeisharMigration Specialist
Jesuit Social Research Institute
Loyola University
Kristin HeyerAssociate Professor
Religious Studies
Santa Clara University
James SaltExecutive Director
Catholics United
Vincent MillerProfessor of Religious Studies
University of Dayton
Nancy DallavalleAssociate Professor and Chair
Department of Religious Studies
Fairfield University