A majority of Visa shareholders rejected an effort to require the company to provide more disclosure about its role in the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) and related lobbying activities. Boston Common Asset Management, an investment firm focused on socially responsible investing, and the Unitarian Universalist Association of Congregations (UUA), a religious organization that affirms the inherent capacity for good in human beings, filed a resolution to require the company to disclose all payments used for lobbying purposes, including payments to groups like ALEC. In all, over 100 million votes were cast in favor of the resolution -- 37% -- but that substantial outpouring of support for greater transparency accounted for less than a majority of the votes cast by Visa shareholders.
With the nation still grappling with high unemployment and depressed tax revenues, many states are stepping up efforts to lure jobs from neighboring states -- paying firms a fortune to jump state lines. Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker, for instance, is actively trying to poach jobs from Illinois and changed the Wisconsin welcome signs to proclaim "Wisconsin -- open for business."
Missing the fiscal cliff? Don't know what to talk about at the dinner table?
Get ready, the Bipartisan Policy Center has predicted that on February 15, 2013, the U.S. Treasury will take in an estimated $9 billion in revenue, but is committed to pay out $52 billion.
You helped make the world a better place this year. You helped expose corruption and thwart efforts to distort our democracy.
1. You helped force 42 major corporations and 70 legislators to do something they did not want to do, leave the American Legislative Exchange Council.
As concerned workers come together across Michigan in protest, partisan politicians are poised to make one of the strongholds for America's blue-collar worker rights into a so-called "Right to Work" (RTW) state -- in accordance with the ALEC blueprint to change to state laws at the behest of some of the biggest corporations in the world.
Today in Michigan, Gov. Rick Snyder and his GOP controlled lame-duck legislature pulled a fast one, introducing and then ramming through the House and the Senate so-called "right to work" legislation. The bill was introduced at 11 a.m., passed the House at 5 p.m. by a narrow margin and the Senate at around 6:00 p.m. When the process is complete and the bill is signed, Michigan will become the 24th right to work state.
Corporate lobbyists and right-wing legislators of the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) will be gathering in Washington, DC today for ALEC's annual States and Nation Policy Summit. Today also marks the release of an in-depth report on the failure of ALEC's economic recommendations for the states. The report claims that "states that were rated higher on ALEC's Economic Outlook Ranking in 2007," the first year the ranking was published, "have actually been doing worse economically in the years since, while the less a state conformed with ALEC policies the better off it was."
After an electoral shellacking and exit polls that show the vast majority of Americans are on Barack Obama's side when it comes to the major issues of the day, Paul Ryan is headed back to Congress convinced that he espouses "very popular ideas" and calling the 2012 results "a very close election."
With this mind-set Ryan is prepping to turn the "fiscal cliff" austerity debate to the advantage of the Social Security bashers and Medicare slashers.
One of the most significant developments for American progressives this election season was the election of Mark Pocan, who won Wisconsin's 2nd Congressional District seat with 68 percent of the vote. The popular and populist Pocan is likely to hold the seat, which was once held by Progressive Party champion Robert M. La Follette, for many years to come. Pocan represented the Center for Media and Democracy (CMD) area in the state legislature and CMD worked with him on our ALEC Exposed project.