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On November 1, Nancy Pelosi said she is "not a big fan of Medicare for All." Likewise, U.S. Representative Anna Eshoo, who chairs the Subcommittee on Health, has been criticized for being "in the pocket of Big Pharma." At rallies in front of both Congresswomen's offices this fall, protesters asked why neither of them represent what their constituents want. Both Congresswomen will face opposition from candidates who support Medicare-for-All. The primary election in California is set for March 3, 2020.
The Kincade Fire has created a calamitous path through Northern California’s wine country, forcing nearly 200,000 people to flee their homes. Many of them are reliving the disastrous fire that raged through the same area in 2017. On October 25, PG&E admitted its electrical equipment may have ignited the inferno, despite electrical blackouts imposed across Northern California to prevent blazes. In the San Francisco Bay Area, activists say we need to replace private control of utilities. Two new campaigns, Let's Own PG&E and Utility Justice Campaign, are calling for a publicly-accountable takeover of the monopoly. Protests have been held in San Francisco, Santa Cruz, and other cities.
Mon Oct 21 2019 (Updated 10/29/19)
The Evolution of Trump’s Attacks on Immigrants
Leon Kunstenaar writes: While the concentration camps and violence at the border are in the news, the less visible, massive number of deportations from areas away from the border explodes.... At D.H.S., after much personnel turnover and turmoil, Trump no longer needs to cope with pushback from various officials resisting his policies. He is now surrounded by extreme ideologues in the mold of Stephen Miller. Rather than large headline generating raids and impressive but useless walls, he will use quiet but continual attacks on individuals enabled by “big data”.
On October 4, the Trump administration dismissed protests and made a formal decision to open 725,500 acres of public lands and mineral estate across California’s Central Coast and the Bay Area to new oil and gas drilling and fracking. The public lands the U.S. Bureau of Land Management has earmarked for leasing are in the counties of Alameda, Contra Costa, Fresno, Merced, Monterey, San Benito, San Joaquin, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Santa Cruz and Stanislaus. The move will end a more than five-year-old moratorium on leasing federal public land and mineral estate in the state to oil companies.
Fri Oct 11 2019 (Updated 10/12/19)
Union Members Strike at Janus of Santa Cruz
National Union of Healthcare Workers (NUHW) members at Janus of Santa Cruz held their first-ever strike on September 26, after management imposed a first contract that did not remedy poverty wages that have forced many workers to find new jobs. In the nearly two years since Janus workers joined NUHW, more than 60 percent of them have left for other jobs. With its workforce in constant flux, state records show that Janus is serving fewer clients and forcing more of them to wait for services that were once immediately accessible, worsening Santa Cruz’s addiction crisis.
Hundreds of Direct Action Everywhere activists occupied a Whole Foods store and an Amazon office in San Francisco on September 30, with dozens chaining and/or locking themselves in place until thirty-seven were arrested. Simultaneously, several activists chained themselves together inside an Amazon office in San Francisco. The following afternoon, activists urged the SF Board of Supervisors to support of “Rose’s Law: An Animal Bill of Rights.” In response to the protests in San Francisco, Whole Foods’ parent-company Amazon filed for a temporary restraining order against Direct Action Everywhere covering all California locations.
Businesses are closed and rail service suspended, as China's Special Administrative Region Hong Kong is in chaos this weekend. A ban on wearing masks, set to take effect October 4, apparently backfired as street violence increased; at least one train was set on fire. The Hong Kong protests have now spread to several large cities in the United States, with hundreds gathering in San Francisco ahead of the 70th anniversary of the founding of the People's Republic of China. Critics say that despite claims in the press about the protesters being advocates of democracy and freedom, demonstrators carrying U.S. flags are asking the ironically tyrannical President Trump to come to their aid.
Trump tried and failed to keep his September 17 Silicon Valley fundraiser location secret, putting out misleading information to get protestors to go to the wrong place or simply give up. Then, he misused secret service and local police to try to block protestors from the only road with access to the Palo Alto Republican fundraiser. Despite his efforts, protesters managed to discover the true location as a home owned by Sun MicroSystems co-founder Scott McNealy and created a spectacle that the presidential motorcade and shuttle buses with rich donors would see.
Thu Sep 5 2019 (Updated 09/30/19)
Global Climate Strike Week of Action
Climate Strikes began on September 20, three days out from the United Nation's climate emergency summit in New York, and continued to September 27. As young climate strikers have shown, there is huge power in sustained action week after week to match the scale of the climate emergency. Millions walked out from home, work, school or university to declare a climate emergency and to show politicians what action in line with climate science and justice means.
On September 3, the San Francisco Board of Supervisors passed a resolution designating the National Rifle Association of America (NRA) a domestic terrorist organization. Supervisor Catherine Stefani said she drafted the resolution in response to the July 28 shooting at the Gilroy Garlic Festival, which killed 3 people and wounded 15 others. The NRA retaliated by filing a lawsuit against city and county of San Francisco and the San Francisco Board of Supervisors. Separately, Bay Area groups for stricter gun laws held rallies in response to the week of mass shootings in Gilroy, California, El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio.
Thu Sep 5 2019 (Updated 09/08/19)
Montgomery Street Repurposed to Save Amazon Forest
The Amazon is burning at an unprecedented speed. Ranchers and cattle farmers are burning territory, clearing it, and creating pastures for cattle and big agriculture to take over and buy their property. On August 30, San Francisco's Montgomery Street, normally the home of plundering corporations, became the venue of Amazon peoples' worship and demands to save their world, and ours. Montgomery Street was quickly sealed off with a street-wide banner at the 300 building, site of the Brazilian consulate.
In the wake of an alleged assault on a middle school student in the San Lorenzo Valley, Captain Daniel Bonfante, formerly of the Felton Fire Protection District, has called for vigilante justice against homeless people, who he blames for the majority of crime in the area. On August 21 on Instagram, Bonfante called for community members to "get the posse together" and "let the rift raft know that we are vigilant". "99% of all crime is homeless in Felton right now," Bonfante said. "They are getting aggressive and don't care anymore."
Thu Aug 29 2019 (Updated 09/02/19)
Palantir Headquarters Swarmed Over Contracts with ICE
Angry activists mobilized on August 16, blocking the cafeteria entrance at Palantir Technologies' headquarters in Palo Alto. They were protesting the $20 billion data-mining company's ICE Investigative Case Management contract that enables Immigration and Custom Enforcement to track the every move of undocumented immigrants. After Palantir announced on August 20 that they would be renewing their ICE contract, the Coalition to Close the Concentration Camps Bay Area called for an emergency mass mobilization.
Thu Aug 29 2019 (Updated 09/01/19)
Protesters Demand End to U.S. Involvement in Yemeni War
As separatists and government-backed forces battle for control of the Yemeni capital, innocent civilians continue to suffer. On August 16, Yemeni-Americans and allies gathered in front of San Francisco's Federal Building where they called on Speaker Nancy Pelosi to lead the House in progressive foreign policies as regards the war in Yemen. They want the House-Senate conference on the National Defense Authorization Act to include the Smith-Khanna amendment to end all U.S. participation in the Saudi-led war in Yemen and the Malinowski amendment to stop bomb sales to Saudi Arabia.
In response to reports that CEO of SoulCycle and Equinox Stephen Ross will be holding a fundraiser for the Donald Trump reelection campaign, members of the LGBT community launched a boycott of these businesses with a protest in front of Soul Cycle's Harvey Milk Plaza location on August 7 in San Francisco. Demonstrators said they are angry that the owner of the fitness center chains, who also owns the Miami Dolphins, is supporting a racist, homophobic, and sexist president. They are calling on current members to cancel their memberships and decline to renew them.
Dogs were pitted against bulls and forced to attack them at the California Rodeo in Salinas in July. As attendees were filing out of the Salinas Sports Complex, six bulls who had just been run hard by the rodeo clowns were charged repeatedly by a mixed pack of five dogs. Two of the big dogs in the group, the boerboel and the Catahoula, lunged again and again at the bulls’ faces, biting and sometimes drawing blood.
As news continues to pour in that the Trump administration’s attacks against immigrants and refugees has reached new lows, Bay Area residents are feeling a renewed sense of urgency. On the heels of protests throughout the region on July 2 and further official announcements about coming ICE raids, July 12 saw a new round of demonstrations, including protests at the city of San Francisco's Sansome Street ICE facility. In Santa Clara County, the Rapid Response Network (RRN) reported an increase in calls of observed ICE activity, as people are on high alert. Volunteers who document ICE interactions with immigrants have seen their ranks increase quickly.
Plans for a mass roundup of migrant families that have received deportation orders, announced on June 21, set off protests throughout the nation as Americans reacted in horror. Outraged particularly by eye witness reports of mistreatment and deaths of migrant children held in barbarous conditions, everyday citizens joined long-time activists to say "never again" to incarceration based on race or citizenship. People throughout the Bay Area and across the nation demonstrated June 22 through July 5. Indybay has coverage from many of these demos. Another round of protests will start with an international day of action on July 12.
On June 17, at demonstrations that drew up to two million people, protesters in Hong Kong continued demands that the government withdraw an extradition bill they fear would allow people to be sent to the mainland for actions disapproved of by Beijing. Protesters insisted that police be held accountable for brutal tactics at demonstrations held earlier in June as well. In the Bay Area cities of Palo Alto and San Francisco, hundreds demonstrated in solidarity with activists in Hong Kong.
A "Wear Orange" walk across the Golden Gate Bridge on June 8 recognized the gun violence epidemic and . honored its victims. Orange was the color Hadiya Pendleton, murdered at the age of fifteen in Chicago, wore and has become the symbol of the movement for gun safety laws. It was one of hundreds of events across the country organized by chapters of Mom Demands Action for Gun Sense in America and other organizations that promote non-violence. At the Marin overlook, protesters holding photos of lost loved ones gathered around the statue, The Lonely Sailor.
The Newsom administration on May 2 shelved the plan to build twin Delta Tunnels — and announced it will start a renewed environmental review for a single Delta Tunnel to facilitate the export of northern California water to San Joaquin agribusiness and Southern California Water agencies. The announcement marks the end of the twin tunnels project that Arnold Schwarzenegger began in 2007, itself a revival of the peripheral canal plan that the voters overwhelmingly rejected in the November 1982 election. After beginning his third term as Governor, Jerry Brown continued to pursue the Bay Delta Conservation Plan, as it was called, until it was renamed the California WaterFix in 2015.

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11/12/19 Neither Eshoo Nor Pelosi Represent Constituents When It Comes to Healthcare frontpage | health-housing | sf | south-bay | peninsula | california | us | government | santa-cruz10/29/19 Utility Justice Campaign Demands Restructuring of Northern California’s Energy System frontpage | environment | health-housing | global-justice | sf | south-bay | east-bay | peninsula | california | government | santa-cruz10/21/19 "Big Data" Allows Less Visible But More Intense Attacks on Immigrants frontpage | police | us | government | immigrant10/11/19 Moratorium on Leasing Federal Public Land to Oil Companies in California Ends frontpage | environment | central-valley | south-bay | east-bay | peninsula | california | us | santa-cruz10/11/19 Janus Workers Endure Poverty Wages Under Contract Imposed by Management frontpage | health-housing | labor | drugwar | santa-cruz10/07/19 After Protest at SF Whole Foods, Amazon Responds with Statewide Restraining Order frontpage | police | sf | california | government | animalliberation10/06/19 Seventy-Five Arrested After Hundreds Converge on Petaluma Duck Slaughterhouse police | north-bay | animalliberation10/05/19 In San Francisco, Hong Kong Club Members Wear Masks, Wave U.S. flags frontpage | antiwar | global-justice | sf | peninsula | international09/24/19 Trump Uses Secret Service and Local Police to Try to Block Silicon Valley Protesters frontpage | race | global-justice | peninsula | us | government | immigrant09/08/19 SF Board of Supes Act After Recent Mass Shootings, NRA Sues in Retaliation frontpage | health-housing | sf | peninsula | government09/05/19 People Rise Up Around the World in the Name of Climate Science and Justice frontpage | environment | central-valley | sf | south-bay | east-bay | peninsula | north-bay | north-coast | california | us | international | santa-cruz
The Death of Deseire Quintero and the Creation of “Camp Phoenix” California Homeless Union (1 comment) Thu Nov 14th 6:49am
Support the Ross Survival Camp Keith McHenry (1 comment) Tue Nov 12th 8:53pm
Santa Cruz Police Department Seeks Council Approval for $235K Taser Purchase Santa Cruz Police News (3 comments) Mon Nov 11th 2:30pm
No U.S.-backed fascist coup in Bolivia! ANSWER Coalition (1 comment) Sun Nov 10th 10:14pm
Vigil/Rally: Pathway for Permanent Residency for DACA, TPS & DED (El Cerrito) El Cerrito Progressives and others Sun Nov 10th 3:49pm
Community Members Re-establish Ross Camp Alex Darocy (1 comment) Sun Nov 10th 3:47pm
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