Tag Archives: Momentum

Unspent Citizen Wealth Support

unemployment-lineSan Francisco Sitting in the Tides Momentum conference, I couldn’t help taking some notes as Larry Mishel from the Economic Policy Institute showed his slides estimating that unemployment would rise to over 10% in 2010.  More frighteningly, he said that when he added in underemployment the rates would be almost 18% then with 27,000,000 jobs – people! – impacted adversely.  I tried to reconcile this impending “pain,” as Larry correctly called it with the headline in my lap from USA Today indicating that “States Say They Can’t Afford Costs Tied to $5 Billion Emergency Fund.”

The story furnished by ProPublica writers Michael Grabell and Chris Flavelle nailed the issue that almost half of the states in the US are going to walk away from the desperately needed money in the fund, because they are not willing – or able – to come up with their 20% share of this 4 to 1 federal to state match.   This is money that goes directly to citizen wealth and survival and can be used as direct cash transfers, aid on expanding welfare caseloads, rent payments to forestall evictions, and even creating temporary jobs for the unemployed.  The reporters highlight the plans and problems in a number of states like California, New York, and Tennessee.  They also redlined Louisiana, which is already notorious for not taking stimulus money to help the unemployed, and now indicates that its budget crunch means that despite the fact that 20% of our citizens live in poverty, it doesn’t have the money to help them get out of poverty.

What the heck?!?

Continue reading

Facebooktwitterredditpinterestlinkedinmail

Tides Momentum Labor Day

srez1-353x448San Francisco A 6 AM flight from NOLA and hours circumnavigating the Bay because of the Bay Bridge repairs on a beautifully sunny Sunday from airport to Benicia Bookshop for Citizen Wealth to Tides Momentum Conference at the chic W in downtown left me dragging wagon until the JBL Award winners had their chance to thank the crowd.  This year we had focused on grassroots leaders of the immigrant rights movement that had made a major difference, and they brought reality and, well, momentum to the room.

The JBL’s, as we have fondly called them for more than a decade, were named for Jane Bagley Lehman, one of our dearly departed shining lights from the Tides Foundation’s early board.  Every year they recognize someone whose public advocacy from the local level has impact on national policy.  Salvador Reza, leader of the fight against Sheriff Arpaio and the outrages of the Homeland Security 287(g) program, Artemio Arreola, the political director of the Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights, and one of the sparkplugs of immigration reform, and the widely known leader in this movement, Angelica Salas, from the Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights of Los Angeles (CHIRLA) were the awardees.

Continue reading

Facebooktwitterredditpinterestlinkedinmail