The Retiree Advocate: August 2015
Welcome to the August 2015 issue of The Retiree Advocate, the monthly newsletter of the Puget Sound Advocates for Retirement Action (PSARA).
In This Issue:
- Welcome to the Gutenberg Editor
- March, 2016 ADVOCATE
- Climate Change Is Violence…NOW
- Puerto Rico’s Debt Crisis: The Cost of Being a US Colony
- What’s Next in the Fight for Fair Trade?
- What’s Wrong with Europe?
- "Secret Memo": Primary Election Bad News for Developers and Landlords
- Initiative 735 Urges Congress to Amend the US Constitution
- Frank Irigon Receives National Award
- In Memory of Edie Koch
- Celebrate and Organize
Only six months ago when the TPP, or the Trans-Pacific Partnership, was brought up in discussions, even well-informed activists generally gave blank stares. TP what? But in recent weeks it’s been the subject of increasing news coverage, along with exposure to the so-called fast track authority bill that would grant President Obama authority to sign the agreement without prior Congressional review.
“Ancestry is not a crime,” said historian Roger Daniels, recalling Gordon Hirabayashi’s succinct criticism of President Franklin Roosevelt’s 1942 Executive Order 9066. The Executive Order established military zones in the western halves of the Pacific coast states, and empowered the military to remove all persons of Japanese ancestry from their homes, force them into makeshift housing in the animal stalls at the Puyallup Fairgrounds and other such “assembly centers,” then later “relocate” them to one of 10 concentration camps for 3-1/2 years.
The word on the street prior to the 2014 legislative session was “keep your expectations low,” but that’s not PSARA. We had high hopes. Finally emerging from the Great Recession, it was time to get on with passing legislation that serves the needs of the majority of Washington residents.
According to the World Health Organization, climate change is the biggest global health threat of the 21st century. Between 1970 and 2004, there were over 140,000 deaths annually attributable to the use of fossil fuels.
A couple of years ago, Carolyn Colvin, Acting Social Security Administration Commissioner, told AFGE that the Agency was getting very little “push-back” when SSA decided to close field offices. Some of us took that as a challenge, and our efforts are finally beginning to bear fruit. Nowhere have community and elected leaders challenged SSA’s office closures as strongly as we have in Seattle.
This era of hospital mergers is leaving not just patients but also communities behind. As our community hospitals become part of large multi-state chains with their eye more on the bottom line than on patients’ needs, it’s up to us to make sure their priorities reflect ours.
Welcome to all our new members. So far, 75 lucky people have joined PSARA this year.
The arc of life has been on my mind lately. Turning 70 this month has led me to think about youth and the aging process. I have been thinking about how Pete Seeger was a presence from my early years, and how the friendship and influence of Will Parry has impacted my middle and senior years.
HOW DO WE MAKE A DIFFERENCE? SHOW UP!!… And be ready to explain our issues and why legislators should support them.