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Jul 17, 18

This Is America #19: Trump, #OccupyICENYC, & Mark Bray

Welcome, to This Is America, July 17th, 2018.

In this episode we’ll be talking about headlines, giving an update on Water Protector political prisoners, rent strikes, looking at ICE resistance, and well as revolt and repression updates from across so-called North America.

Also, in this episode we talk to folks at #OccupyICENYC as well as Mark Bray about the proposed “Unmask Antifa” bill from New York Republican, Don Donovan, and what it means.

All this and more, let’s get to the news.

Trump that Regime

Today cracks appeared in the unity between neo-Conservatives in the GOP and the proto-fascist and nationalist side connected to Trump and the Alt-Right. After Trump spoke in front of media after a meeting with Putin, he contradicted law enforcement and the intelligence community, backing up Putin that no Russian interference in the US election had taken place. There was large scale condemnation from both corporate parties, largely claiming that Trump was a “traitor” and that he had “bowed for a dictator.”

Calls started to circulate on social media to “occupy” the area in front of the White House, however those that did show up last night to yell at the building (without Trump inside of it) did not end up staying the night. It remains to be seen at this point if a larger push by the elites to have Trump removed will soon begin, or if we will see simply just more of the same circus that we are used to.

As for Trump’s actual reasons in snugglin up to Putin, Grist reported:

Fossil fuels still power 80 percent of the world’s economy, and the leaders of that dying industry might start acting in desperation to stave off its decline. You can see why rapidly eliminating dirty energy sources — exactly what science says we have to do — might be fiercely opposed by politicians who have a substantial stake in their success.

Russia is a petrostate, and the U.S. is now, too. In fact, the two countries are the world’s largest non-OPEC oil producers, extracting nearly as much as all OPEC countries combined. They also own an even greater share of the global natural gas market: Added together the two countries produce six times more natural gas than the rest of the world.

By working together, they can keep the global economy swimming in oil and gas.

From their comments leading up to Monday’s meeting, it’s clear that Trump and Putin see the oil and gas industry as a critical component to their working relationship.

On the notion of the US and Russia as a “petrol-state,” Bloomberg wrote:

President Donald Trump, sensing an opportunity, is looking past independence to what he calls energy dominance. His administration plans to open vast ocean acreage to offshore exploration and for the first time in 40 years allow drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. It may take years to tap, but the Alaska payoff alone is eye-popping—an estimated 11.8 billion barrels of technically recoverable crude.

By all accounts, the threat of climate change is even greater than ever thought, with many scientists predicting the coming collapse of civilization due to problems brought on by burning fossil fuels, increased toxification of the environment, as well as an extreme wealth gap, within only several decades.

But beyond the spectacle of Trump’s latest fiasco, for millions of Americans, America is far from great. For instance, You might be noticing that food prices have gone up, along with other basic everyday commodities. Over all:

The price of all food has risen 26.8 percent over the past 10 years, outpacing the 21.9 percent inflation rate over the same period.

At the same time, this process is also being compounded by the new trade war escalation. As The Atlantic wrote:

The price of imported goods is increasing. The demand for exported goods is falling. American businesses are laying workers off, and some are warning that they might end up bankrupt.

Meanwhile, wages continue to stagnate across the board, and millions of Americans continue to live paycheck to paycheck, on the verge of extreme poverty and homelessness, and unable to recover from the economic crash of 2008. As Marketwatch wrote:

Wages have remained stagnant since the 1970s and four in 10 households experience more than a 30% fluctuation in income month to month due to unreliable employment, irregular hours or periods of unemployment, according to data from the JP Morgan Chase Institute cited in The Aspen Institute’s new report, Reconnecting Work & Wealth. Nearly half of households have little or no emergency funds, while one in five Americans has a zero or negative net worth. According to PwC’s 2017 Employee Wellness Financial Survey, money matters were a top source of stress for boomers as well as younger generations.

Lastly, a new study released this week confirms that tax policies from both parties over the last 17 years has resulted in a mass plundering of wealth from the poor and working-classes and into the hands of the uber-rich. The report from the Institution of Taxation and Economic Policy revealed:

[T]he plundering of US wealth to benefit the rich since 2001. Under presidents Bush, Obama and Trump—that is, under both Democratic and Republican administrations—US federal tax cuts have resulted in lost revenue of $5.1 trillion, with 65 percent of that money going to the top 20 percent of income earners. When interest on increased federal debt is calculated in, the cost in social wealth totals $5.9 trillion over the past 17 years.

Native Water Protectors Sentenced, Support Eric King’s Family

As the J20 trial has now come to a close, the need to step up and support Water Protectors, black liberation rebels, and long term anarchist prisoners is greater than ever.

As Unicorn Riot wrote on Red Fawn:

Red Fawn Fallis, a political prisoner arrested during the movement to stop the Dakota Access Pipeline, was sentenced today in federal court by Judge Daniel Hovland. Fallis was sentenced to 57 months (4.75 years) in federal prison. She will receive a credit of 18 months ‘time served’ taken off of her sentence, from time spent in North Dakota jails before trial proceedings began. Fallis is expected to serve a total of 39 months in prison followed by 3 years probation.

Also, IGD was forwarded this list of current Water Protector prisoners for everyone to keep on their radar. This is coming from the Water Protector Legal Collective:

Red Fawn Fallis

Soon to change, but for now: Red Fawn Fallis, Resident Burleigh/Morton County Detention Center PO Box 2499 Bismarck, ND 58502

Red Fawn has been sentenced and is awaiting transfer from Burleigh/Morton County Detention Center to her new placement which will be determined by the Bureau of Prisons. We will post her new address as soon as it becomes available.

Legal information is on her case page here, and more information on Red Fawn and how you can support her is on her support committee’s website here. You can make a donation to support Red Fawn’s legal defense here. To contribute funds directly to Red Fawn (that will be added to her commissary) you can do so here.

Dion Ortiz

Dion is preparing to change his plea in federal court in Bismarck on July 17.

We will post a new address as soon as it becomes available. You can make a donation directly to Dion here. Dion’s support page is here.

Little Feather

Michael “Little Feather” Giron On May 30, 2018, Little Feather was sentenced to 36 months in prison pursuant to a non-cooperating plea agreement. Please write to him at: Michael “Little Feather” Giron, #25201-075 USP Hazelton PO Box 2000 Bruceton Mills, WV 26525

Legal information is on his case page here, and more information about Little Feather and how you can support him is on his website here.

Michael “Rattler” Markus

Rattler has entered into a non-cooperating plea agreement that includes a joint recommendation of 36 months in prison. He remains out on supervised release awaiting sentencing. His sentencing date is August 6, 2018, in Bismarck federal court.

Legal information is on his case page here, and more information about Rattler and how you can support him is on his support committee page here. Supporters can make a financial contribution directly to Rattler here.

Lastly, long-time anarchist prisoner Eric King’s family is in need of some real support. His partner and mother of two is suffering after recently being diagnosed with thyroid cancer and is also dealing with a recent car accident. Please, give what you can and also plan a benefit event.

Rent Strikes Continue

In Parkdale, Ontario, a family involved in the successful Parkdale rent strike is being targeted with eviction. Read more about it in The Star. Also follow Parkdale Organize for updates and info.

In Los Angeles, actions continue, especially home demonstrations, against landlords and their families, as rent strikes in various parts of the city continue on.

In Chicago, a rent strike in one neighborhood has been on since early July, with tenants forming the #KimballTenantsUnion. Follow the Autonomous Tenants Union on Twitter for daily updates and ways to support.

Anti-ICE Resistance

  • In Portland, ongoing clashes with DHS have broken out on multiple occasions, with DHS attempting to take down parts of camp and also transport detainees with their vehicles, only to be blockaded. DHS agents have responded by shooting pepper balls at people in various instances and attempting to make violent arrests. Meanwhile, the camp has held strong despite ongoing repression, with inspiring scenes of resistance, blockading, and de-arresting!

  • In Tacoma, the occupation has been re-established off and on, and noise demos continue. What’s more, is that inside the North West Detention Facility, a hunger strike has kicked off. Check out their statement below:

  • Occupation continues in LA, with actions to blockade ICE trucks continuing.
  • In Philly, occupation outside of city hall continues.

  • Anti-ICE banner drops in Tennessee.

  • At #OccupyICELA actions and blockades continue.
  • In New York, actions and the occupation of Foley park continues. See our interview with #OccupyICE participants in this episode.

  • In DC, blockades and street marches took place after several ICE raids were carried out. Reports of up to 12 people being swept up by ICE.

Living and Fighting

  • Unrest in Haiti explodes in massive looting, rioting, and anti-government protests.

  • Actions continue against the Bayou Bridge pipeline in Louisiana, with various lock downs taking place.

  • In Chicago, banners were dropped, graffiti put up, and more for the upcoming #August21 #PrisonStrike.

  • Another flyer campaign against racist and white nationalist lawyer of the Proud Boys, Jason Van Dyke took place.

  • Things in Haiti continue to pop off, with people taking to the streets against the President who has imposed austerity measures on the country.

  • Fight against pipelines continues in so-called British Columbia.

  • Reports of Keystone State Skinheads attacking an African-American man.

Thanks gonna do it for us today, we will see you next time!

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