A Corporate Power Grab is Underway, So Where's the Media?

Jim Hightower

Jim Hightower Author, Commentator, America’s Number One Populist

If you need a good, doable New Year's resolution, try this: "I resolve to do my part this year to stop the Trans-Pacific Partnership."

The what? Most people never heard of the TPP, but everyone who cares about good American jobs, an unpolluted environment, food safety, and other fundamentals – especially including our basic right to be a sovereign, self-governing people – should take a peek at this big nasty of a global trade scam. You'd find that the so-called 12-nation "partnership" actually has little to do with trade and everything to do with enthroning a plutocracy of global corporations over us. Rep. Keith Ellison has warned that TPP is the "largest corporate power grab you never heard of."

One reason we commoners don't know about it is that the corporate and governmental elites of the 12 nations have been negotiating this momentous deal in strict secrecy, not only keeping us in the dark, but also Congress. Another reason, however, is that the mass media has been shockingly silent, apparently even incurious about what clearly is a huge story with historic consequences.

FAIR, the excellent watchdog group that tracks media coverage, found that ABC, CBS, CNN, Fox, and NBC have offered the American public practically zero news stories about TPP. Even though the looming power grab has now spawned protests around the world, generated a major coalition of some 500 grassroots groups in our country loudly opposing the ripoff deal, and has produced an odd-bedfellow, a rare bipartisan alignment of opponents in Congress, there's been a TV blackout. Could it possibly be that the global conglomerates that own our so-called "news" networks don't want us knowing what's up behind TPP's closed doors? Surely not.

To learn what the corporate powers are up to… and what we can do about it, go to www.StopTheTPP.org.

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This has been reposted from Jim Hightower's website.

National radio commentator, writer, public speaker, and author of the book, Swim Against The Current: Even A Dead Fish Can Go With The Flow, Jim Hightower has spent three decades battling the Powers That Be on behalf of the Powers That Ought To Be – consumers, working families, environmentalists, small businesses, and just-plain-folks. Twice elected Texas Agriculture Commissioner, Hightower believes that the true political spectrum is not right to left but top to bottom, and he has become a leading national voice for the 80 percent of the public who no longer find themselves within shouting distance of the Washington and Wall Street powers at the top. He publishes a populist political newsletter, “The Hightower Lowdown.” He is a New York Times best-selling author, and has written seven books including, Thieves In High Places: They’ve Stolen Our Country And It’s Time To Take It Back; If the Gods Had Meant Us To Vote They Would Have Given Us Candidates; and There’s Nothing In the Middle Of the Road But Yellow Stripes and Dead Armadillos. His newspaper column is distributed nationally by Creators Syndicate.

Posted In: Allied Approaches, From Jim Hightower

Union Matters

The Big Drip

From the USW

From tumbledown bridges to decrepit roads and failing water systems, crumbling infrastructure undermines America’s safety and prosperity. In coming weeks, Union Matters will delve into this neglect and the urgent need for a rebuilding campaign that creates jobs, fuels economic growth and revitalizes communities. 

A rash of water main breaks in West Berkeley, Calif., and neighboring cities last month flooded streets and left at least 300 residents without water. Routine pressure adjustments in response to water demand likely caused more than a dozen pipes, some made of clay and more than 100 years old, to rupture.

West Berkeley’s brittle mains are not unique. Decades of neglect left aging pipes susceptible to breaks in communities across the U.S., wasting two trillion gallons of treated water each year as these systems near collapse.

Comprehensive upgrades to the nation’s crumbling water systems would stanch the flow and ensure all Americans have reliable access to clean water.

Nationwide, water main breaks increased 27 percent between 2012 and 2018, according to a Utah State University study.  

These breaks not only lead to service disruptions  but also flood out roads, topple trees and cause illness when drinking water becomes contaminated with bacteria.

The American Water Works Association estimated it will cost at least $1 trillion over the next 25 years to upgrade and expand water infrastructure.

Some local water utilities raised their rates to pay for system improvements, but that just hurts poor consumers who can’t pay the higher bills.

And while Congress allocates money for loans that utilities can use to fix portions of their deteriorating systems, that’s merely a drop in the bucket—a fraction of what agencies need for lasting improvements.

America can no longer afford a piecemeal approach to a systemic nationwide crisis. A major, sustained federal commitment to fixing aging pipes and treatment plants would create millions of construction-related jobs while ensuring all Americans have safe, affordable drinking water.

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There is Dignity in All Work

There is Dignity in All Work