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|Protest the corporate undermining of democracy Protest ALEC|
|Date||Thursday July 20|
|Time||2:00 PM - 4:00 PM|
|Import this event into your personal calendar.|
|In front of the SF Marriott Hotel 44 4th St. (at Mission) downtown SF|
|Event Type||Press Conference|
Join us to protest corporate undermining of democracy!
The American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) is meeting in SF July 19-23. Never heard of ALEC? Read on...
Join us in protest!
Press Conference with speakers:
Funded primarily by large corporations, industry groups, and conservative foundations, ALEC is one of the nation’s most powerful and least known corporate lobbies. If you have worked on any issue coming under the broad rubric of the progressive agenda, be it health care, labor rights, resource exploitation, fair trade, privatization of prisons, etc., ALEC has almost certainly introduced legislation in opposition to your purposes.
ALEC’s agenda promotes free trade, minimum government oversight, protection of (corporate) property and minimizing regulation of those in the extractive industry -- letting polluters slither out of responsibility for clean-up, lowering diesel emission standards and energy deregulation.
Focussing on state legislation, ALEC “ghost writes” legislative bills that are in the corporate interest on these issues:
● Energy: No special interest has invested more in ALEC than the oil industry; and the political payoff has been spectacular, as ALEC has helped lineup legislators to fight for lower taxes on gasoline and beat back state regulations aimed at curbing the carbon dioxide emissions leading to global warming.
● Health Care and Human Services: Free Market Health Care Reform: ALEC members have introduced over 100 pieces of legislation taking away or limiting the rights of patients.
● Homeland Security: ALEC has taken aim at eco- and animal rights activists in drafting legislative language putting property damage on a par with terrorist crimes, if those suffering the damage are in the extractive, agricultural or animal experimentation industries. In 2003 ALEC and the U.S. Sportsman's Alliance drafted the Animal and Ecological Terrorism Act and promoted it to legislators in all 50 states.
● Criminal Justice Reform: An ALEC task force that includes as a member the Corrections Corporation of America, the nation's largest private prison company, drafted a "truth in sentencing" bill restricting parole eligibility for prisoners, keeping inmates locked up longer.
● Labor Rights: ALEC members have introduced legislation ranging from "right to work" bills to privatization and deregulation legislation, based on prototype bills provided by the organization, and have staunchly opposed living wage legislation.
● Natural Resources: ALEC’s “Environmental Audit Privilege“ is a measure that relieves companies of legal responsibility for their own pollution, granting special privilege to the polluters who need it least. ALEC opposes any US action to implement the Kyoto treaty on reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
● Biotechnology: ALEC’s prototype bill language would, in effect, disallow communities from passing resolutions against genetically-engineered seeds, crops or animals. A bill currently in the California state legislature, SB 1056, would do just that by making it illegal for counties or cities to pass laws prohibiting GMOs. Similar legislation has been passed in 15 states already!!!
Speakers at the ALEC meeting include former Congressman Dick Armey, economist Milton Friedman, and U.S. Attorney General Alberto Gonzales.
ALEC deserves an appropriate activists’ welcome to San Francisco, and we hope you can join us!