"I absolutely love bus organizing. Bus riders are my people."
As Tri-Met raises fares and decreases service, a bus ticket costs more than ever and may not get you as far. A growing network of working-class transit riders are reaching out to each other on the bus and organizing to demand transfers that last three hours instead of two. We speak with community organizer Crystal Wabnum of OPAL (Organizing People, Activating Leaders) about the Campaign for a Fair Transfer.
Letter Carriers and other postal workers are facing a barrage of scare tactics from the Postmaster General, including the threat of eliminating 30% of the workforce, half the post offices and three days of mail delivery. Kevin Card, president of the Oregon State Association of Letter Carriers, tells host Jamie Partridge how the US Postal Service and their legislative allies are conspiring to gut workers wages, benefits and collective bargaining rights using a phoney debt crisis created by Congressional mandates.
Here's an idea, Mr. President: try governing the way you campaigned. Or just try governing, period.
What's a progressive to do these days? A federal court has declared the "individual mandate" provision of the health care bill to be unconstitutional, making it nearly inevitable that the case will find its way to the Supreme Court. Hmm, what sort of provision might have avoided precisely this outcome? A public option, perhaps?
Through-out the show we played clips from famous songs written by members of the Industrial Workers of the World who, as Utah Phillips liked to put it, stole the hymn songs because they were pretty and changed the words so they'd make more sense. In the end, our radical musicologists, Brad Duncan and Josh Wise, talk about the litirgical and popular origins of the songs and how they spoke to both where people found themselves, where they've been and where they wanted to go.
Frann takes on the idea that the United States is broke, reminds us of the ramification of the kind of spending-cuts being demanded in Washington, and the sort of demands we should be making for the massive wealth held by the ruling class. She suggests that resistance to austerity, precisely to be realistic, must arise from outside the channels of power currently demanding austerity in the first place. "People power, from Greece to Spain to Egypt to Tunisia, is anything but a utopian phrase - it is the watchword of those on the front-line in the struggle against austerity." She also reminds us that "austerity" isn't new - before it used to be called structural adjustments.