Public Bank forum at UW, Wed, October 26, 7:00 PM, with Ellen Brown and Rep. Bob Hasegawa

Public Bank Forum

Featuring Ellen Brown,  Author of The Web of Debt  
Rep. Bob Hasegawa , Chair of the House Infrastructure Financing Task Force

Learn how having a state-owned public bank in Washington will help create thousands of jobs, support education and fund infrastructure projects

Wed, October 26, 7:00pm 6:30 doors open
120 Kane Hall, University of Washington

$5 at the door, or at Brown Paper Tickets, 800.838.3006
No one turned away for lack of funds., Students free (with ID)

Sponsored by:

Harry Bridges Center for Labor Studies,        Washington Public Bank Coalition
Fellowship of Reconciliation/Just Sustainable Economy Group
Puget Sound Alliance for Retired Americans,  Western Washington Fellowship of Reconciliation

If you are tired of state tax money going to megabanks, you will want to attend this event.

For more info about public banking:

Rep. Hasegawa to talk about state bank at Mercer Island library Sunday

The King County Legislative Action Committee will host Rep. Bob Hasegawa (11th) at this month’s meeting:

Sunday Oct. 16th, 2-4 p.m. at the Mercer Island Library.
4400 88th Avenue Southeast, Mercer Island, WA 98040-4148
Click here for a “printer friendly” version of the map & directions

Rep. Hasegawa is sponsor of the State Investment Trust bill and chairman of the House task force appointed by Speaker Frank Chopp that is working on legislation for the 2012 session.

Vets & Soldiers Speak Out against War: Friday in Seattle

On the 10th anniversary of the Afghan invasion
Vets & Soldiers Speak Out against War

Friday, October 7, 7:30pm
Doors open at 6:30pm

Three generations of veterans and soldiers will examine the human and economic costs of the endless U.S. occupations in Afghanistan and Iraq, including the rise of anti-war sentiment and suicide rates among the troops.

LeAnna Waldbauer – First Lieutenant in the Army Reserve who served in Iraq and is an outspoken anti-war feminist.
Warren Davis – African American conscientious objector who served a year in a Navy prison for refusing to deploy during the Gulf War.
Steve Hoffman – Navy veteran and submarine electrician, currently a Martin Luther King County Labor Council delegate.

$3 door donation requested. Hearty snack plates served for a $7 donation.

New Freeway Hall, 5018 Rainier Ave. S.
Seattle, WA 98118

On the #7 busline or a short walk east from the Columbia City light rail station. Wheelchair accessible.

Sponsored by Freedom Socialist Party
For more information: call 206-722-2453,
visit or

To reserve childcare or arrange work exchanges, please call three days in advance.

SeattleProtest and Die-In
Fri., Oct. 7, 4:30pm
Seattle Central Community College
Broadway and Pine
March to Westlake
for 5:30pm die-in and program

Public Bank Forum at UW, Kane Hall, Oct 26th 7PM

Attend the Public Bank Forum — How to make our tax dollars work for us in Washington State!

Ellen Brown, attorney and author of Web of Debt
Rep. Bob Hasegawa – Chair of the Infrastructure Task Force

Wednesday, October 26th, 7:00 p.m.
120 Kane Hall, UW

Tickets $5.00 at the door or at Brown Paper Tickets, students free with ID.

Sponsored by The Harry Bridges Chair for Labor Studies, The Washington Public Banking Coalition, The Fellowship of Reconciliation and The Just Sustainable Economy Group

Plowshares activist released from prison; promptly arrested for alleged probation violation

A Plowshares activist was released today after serving the majority of her sentence, only to be promptly arrested for allegedly violating the terms of her probation.

Lynne Greenwald was released earlier today from the SeaTac Federal Detention Center in Washington State after serving five and a half months of a six month sentence for her participation in the 2009 Disarm Now Plowshares action at the Bangor Trident nuclear submarine base and Strategic Weapons Facility, Pacific.

Greenwald is a grandmother, retired social worker, peace activist, and until her time in prison worked at Irma Gary House, a transitional house for women recently released from prisons in Washington State.

Greenwald arrived at the Federal Progress House (the organization that was to provide community supervision while she is under house arrest for the remaining two weeks of her sentence) before noon as she had been instructed by Bureau of Prisons (BOP) officials. While working through her paperwork U.S. Marshals arrived and arrested Greenwald for allegedly violating her conditions of release. They transported her to a holding cell in Tacoma awaiting transport back to the SeaTac Federal Detention Center this evening.

Upon learning of Greenwald’s arrest supporters immediately contacted the U.S. Marshal’s office as well as attorneys working on Greenwald’s behalf.

Attorney Blake Kremer said that Greenwald was picked up on a probation violation based on the requirement that she go “immediately” to the halfway house (Irma Gary House). A brief videotaped interview and time spent with well-wishers who went to the prison to meet her are the issue. Greenwald did go directly from SeaTac to Irma Gary House and then on to Progress House where she did what was required by checking in before noon. The marshals were sent by the BOP, not requested by Progress House or Irma Gary House.

According to the Marshal’s office generally when Marshals pick up someone for the BOP at a halfway house, the issue is handled administratively and without a hearing. Kremer said that her case could either be handled administratively or through a hearing. A hearing would likely be held tomorrow at the U.S. District Courthouse in Tacoma, Washington.

Greenwald and her fellow Disarm Now Plowshares co-defendants, Bill “Bix” Bichsel, SJ, Susan Crane, Steve Kelly, SJ, and Anne Montgomery, RSCJ, challenged the legality and morality of the US storage and threat of use of thermonuclear missiles by Trident nuclear submarines stationed at the Kitsap-Bangor Naval Base outside Bremerton Washington. They entered the U.S. Navy’s nuclear weapons storage depot at Bangor, Washington on November 2, 2009 to symbolically disarm the nuclear weapons stored there, and expose the illegality of the government’s continued preparations for nuclear war.

The five admitted from the start that they cut through the chain link fence surrounding the Navy base during the night of All Souls, November 2, 2009. They then walked undetected for hours nearly four miles inside the base to their target, the Strategic Weapons Facility-Pacific. This top security area is where activists say hundreds of nuclear missiles are stored in bunkers. There they cut through two more barbed wire fences and went inside. They put up two big banners which said “Disarm Now Plowshares: Trident Illegal and Immoral,” scattered sunflower seeds, and prayed until they were arrested at dawn. Prosecutors said the government would neither admit nor deny the existence of nuclear weapons at the base and argued that “whether or not there are nuclear weapons there or not is irrelevant.”

Prosecutors successfully objected to and excluded most of the defense evidence about the horrific effects of nuclear weapons, the illegality of nuclear weapons under US treaty agreements and humanitarian law, and the right of citizens to try to stop war crimes by their government.

After difficult deliberations the jury finally found all five co-defendants guilty on all charges of Conspiracy, Trespass, Destruction of Property on a Naval Installation and Depredation of Government Property. The five co-defendants received varying sentences including up to fifteen months confinement.

Naval Base Kitsap-Bangor and Strategic Weapons Facility, Pacific represent the largest concentration of operational nuclear weapons according to the Kansas City Star.   The U.S. is currently working on plans for a new fleet of ballistic missile submarines to replace the current Trident fleet. The new fleet armed with nuclear armed missiles would operate through the year 2082.

There have been more than 100 Plowshares Nuclear Resistance Actions worldwide since 1980. Plowshares actions are taken from Isaiah 2:4, a book in the Hebrew Scriptures of the Bible, “God will judge between the nations and will settle disputes for many people. And they shall beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning hooks. And nations will not take up swords against nations, nor will they train for war anymore.”


Leonard Eiger, 425-445-2190,
Ground Zero Center for Nonviolent Action               
16159 Clear Creek Road NW Poulsbo, WA 98370

Letter to Rep. Dave Reichert, as a follow-up to our meeting

[Note from the editor:  Last Friday, the author (Linda Boyd), Robert Sargent, and I had a meeting with 8th CD US Congressman Dave Reichert (R), at his Mercer Island office.  My report is here.  — Don Smith]

Representative Reichert,

It  was a pleasure to meet with you on Friday and to express my views about  the debilitating cost of war to the 8th CD, Washington State and our  nation.  I urge you to work vigorously to lower military expenses, in  order to responsibly invest our tax dollars in infrastructure, higher  education, alternative energy and low cost loans to entrepreneurs and  students.

Regarding taxes and the debt ceiling:  The articles below express surprise and outrage that large corporations such as Boeing and G.E. pay NO Federal income taxes. You  said on Friday that corporations were anxious to have  “tax certainty.”  I think that paying nothing in Federal income tax year after year is  more than enough certainty, and shows that there is no “shared  sacrifice” coming from the richest sector of our nation.

I  urge you to reconsider your stance on “no new taxes,”  and to replace  it with “FAIR TAXES FOR ALL.”  Your constituents understand that income  disparity in the U.S. is at an all-time high.  In fact, the U.S. is one  of only a few developed countries where  income inequality has increased  since 1980.  So, you see, “trickle down economics” is a cruel fantasy.   Wealth is more concentrated in the hands of a few tnow than in the roaring twenties.

The  individuals and corporations with the highest incomes must be required  to pay taxes at the same rates as the rest of us.  Anything less is  criminally parasitic.

I  met Robert Sargent for the first time in your office on Friday.  The  facts about disparate and unfair tax rates support his politely  delivered comments.  I hope next time, that you won’t threaten to leave  the room when your constituent points out that there is currently “no  shared sacrifice,” when it comes to balancing the budget.   Can we count  on you to support fair taxation for the people of the 8th C.D. and  throughout  the U.S.?

Thank you in advance for you response,

Linda Boyd
8th C.D.

Boeing was in this group. The company made $9.7 billion in profits in 2008, 2009 and 2010. It paid nothing in federal taxes, booking $178 million back from the government in various credits, for a total federal tax rate of -1.8 percent.

These figures are from the company’s financial reports. Still, I was expecting when Boeing executives went to Congress recently to ask for even lower taxes that they would deny this report. But they didn’t. “Over the last three years, we have not paid,” confirmed James Zrust, Boeing’s vice president for tax.

The company reported worldwide profits of $14.2 billion, and said $5.1 billion of the total came from its operations in the United States. Its American tax bill? None. In fact, G.E. claimed a tax benefit of $3.2 billion.

Wealth And Inequality In America

The gap between the top 1% and everyone else hasn’t been this bad since the Roaring Twenties

Who Rules America: Wealth, Income, and Power

Some additional facts about exorbitant pay and tax avoidance by corporations

  • Executive Pay at Big Companies Rose 23% Last Year. (source)
  • America’s largest global corporations are holding $1.5 trillion dollars in profits overseas in order to avoid US taxes. (source)
  • Goldman Sachs, which received a $10 billion taxpayer bailout, got their effective tax rate down to 1%. (source) They are outsourcing 1000 jobs. (here)
  • GE paid no US taxes on worldwide income of $14.2 billion. (source)
  • In the 10 years ending in 2010, Boeing had $29 billion in profits, and paid minus-$948 million in federal taxes. (source)
  • Twelve major U.S. businesses, with $171 billion in profits, combined to pay negative $2.5 billion in federal taxes the past three years. (source)
  • The IRS estimates that individuals and corporations currently hold $5 trillion in tax haven countries. (source)
  • One year loss in unpaid payroll taxes from businesses: $58 billion (source)
  • Annual cost in oil & gas subsidies: $2.7 billion (source)  First quarter 2011 profits of the six largest oil companies: $38 billion (source)
  • Last fall, Senate Republicans voted unanimously against a bill that would have ended tax breaks for companies that shift American jobs overseas. (source)