View as html http://p0.vresp.com/p2idtf Progressive Values e-letter - Labor Day - September 7, 2015 Organized Labor = Economic Justice including the weekend, overtime pay, 8-hour workday, minimum wage, paid vacation, sick days, safety standards, child labor laws, health benefits, retirement security, unemployment insurance... America's Immoral Economy The social contract has become entirely one-sided. by Robert Reich - http://www.alternet.org/authors/robert-reich-0 , RobertReich.org, - http://robertreich.org/ Alternet.org - http://www.alternet.org/media/robert-reich-americas-immoral-economy?akid=13453.125622.XGgWRZ&rd=1&src=newsletter1042001&t=10 , September 6, 2015 An economy depends fundamentally on public morality; some shared standards about what sorts of activities are impermissible because they so fundamentally violate trust that they threaten to undermine the social fabric. It is ironic that at a time the Republican presidential candidates and state legislators are furiously focusing on private morality - what people do in their bedrooms, contraception, abortion, gay marriage - we are experiencing a far more significant crisis in public morality. We've witnessed over the last two decades in the United States a steady decline in the willingness of people in leading positions in the private sector - on Wall Street and in large corporations especially - to maintain minimum standards of public morality. They seek the highest profits and highest compensation for themselves regardless of social consequences...read more - http://www.alternet.org/media/robert-reich-americas-immoral-economy?akid=13453.125622.XGgWRZ&rd=1&src=newsletter1042001&t=10 The Work We Value, The Intelligence We Ignore: Is the Work that Made America Great Valued Any Longer? - http://www.onbeing.org/blog/work-we-value-intelligence-we-ignore-work-made-america-great-valued-any-longer/2590 By Trent Gilliss, executive editor, On Being - http://www.huffingtonpost.com/laura-reyes/how-unions-improve-the-li_b_7640440.html How Unions Improve the Lives of Every Worker by Laura Reyes - http://www.huffingtonpost.com/laura-reyes/ , Secretary-Treasurer, AFSCME, huffingtonpost.com Labor Day's Violent Roots: The Hard-Won Fight for Your 3-Day Weekend - http://l.facebook.com/l.php?u=http%3A%2F%2Fww2.kqed.org%2Flowdown%2F2015%2F09%2F04%2Flabor-days-violent-roots-the-hard-won-fight-for-your-three-day-weekend%2F&h=8AQEOfzBt&s=1 By Matthew Green - http://ww2.kqed.org/lowdown/author/matthewgreen/ , ww2.kqed.org - http://ww2.kqed.org/lowdown/2015/09/04/labor-days-violent-roots-the-hard-won-fight-for-your-three-day-weekend/ , September 4, 2015 The Rebellious Spirit of the First Labor Day Is Spreading Anew - http://l.facebook.com/l.php?u=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.truth-out.org%2Fopinion%2Fitem%2F32648-the-rebellious-spirit-of-the-first-labor-day-is-spreading-anew&h=0AQFUp7Yz&s=1 Jim Hightower, truth-out.org - http://www.truth-out.org/opinion/item/32648-the-rebellious-spirit-of-the-first-labor-day-is-spreading-anew America's grassroots have come alive with organizing campaigns to reverse the inequities and abuses being perpetuated by the plutocratic powers. This Labor Day, let's take heart in this rising rebelliousness, says Jim Hightower. - https://www.facebook.com/pages/Stanley-Aronowitz/107621719267878 Stanley Aronowitz, an expert on organized labor, talks about the problems facing many unions and how they might become a powerful force once again. BillMoyers.com, Sept 5, 2015 "Occupy refused to be programmatic, and it has virtually disappeared. But Occupy revived the old tactics of civil disobedience and direct action. And by still relying on elections and on contracts and grievance procedures rather than engaging in direct action, unions are on the road to doom," he says. "I think the things that unions, and it's not just unions, but progressives need to think about, is who really has the country in a mess? And I think we've been very nervous about really, with red-hot anger, naming who the bad guys are and then talking about it in terms that resonate with people. Not abstractions about trillions of dollars. But talking about this teeny group of people at the top that are pillaging the country. And I think when we start to focus that and then have ways that people can act that's not just about rhetoric." Stephen Lerner - https://www.facebook.com/pages/Stephen-Lerner/113415462073719 , Labor and Community Organizer, Is Labor A Lost Cause? Moyers & Company - http://l.facebook.com/l.php?u=http%3A%2F%2Fbillmoyers.com%2Fepisode%2Fis-labor-a-lost-cause%2F&h=0AQE3Tk_D&s=1 , billmoyers.com For more information about Economic Justice and labor click here - http://progressivevalues.org.s150046.gridserver.com/economicgo%20to%20www . Working for a just distribution of the fruits of the earth and human labor is not mere philanthropy. It is a moral obligation. For Christians, the responsibility is even greater: It is a commandment. Pope Francis - http://l.facebook.com/l.php?u=http%3A%2F%2Fmobile.nytimes.com%2F2015%2F07%2F12%2Fworld%2Famericas%2Fin-fiery-speeches-francis-excoriates-global-capitalism.html%3Freferrer%26_r%3D0&h=yAQGdklOU&s=1 In Fiery Speeches, Francis Excoriates Global Capitalism There are folks out there who say, 'it doesn't impact me, I'm not a Union guy, I'm not a teacher, I'm not a civil servant.' Let me tell you how it does matter to you. Wages are going down in this country for everybody. When you destroy unions there will be no standard at all, nobody left to negotiate decent jobs for the middle class. Senator Bernie Sanders - http://l.facebook.com/l.php?u=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.thenation.com%2Farticle%2Ftop-ten-labor-day-songs%2F&h=tAQGcE925&s=1 Top Ten Labor Day Songs By - http://www.thenation.com/authors/peter-rothberg/ Peter Rothberg - https://twitter.com/@peterrothberg Twitter, - http://www.thenation.com/article/top-ten-labor-day-songs/ The Nation, September 3, 2015 In honor of Labor Day, here's a stab at the impossible task of naming the best songs ever written about working people. - http://www.upworthy.com/i-will-not-wish-anybody-a-happy-labor-day-until-these-6-things-are-figured-out-there-i-said-it?c=ufb1 The story of how Labor Day began (in cartoons and pictures) By - http://www.upworthy.com/brandon-weber Brandon Weber, Upworthy.com, August 18, 2015 * * * * * Go to - http://www.ProgressiveValues.org www.ProgressiveValues.org for articles, excerpts, quotations and more. To receive this e-letter directly, go to bottom left of home page and sign up. * * * * * Fair Use Notice: These pages contain copyrighted material the use of which has not been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. This website distributes this material without profit for educational purposes. We believe this constitutes a fair use of any such copyrighted material as provided for in 17 U.S.C. Â§ 107. The many wise and articulate writers who share their knowledge with the public via the internet are profoundly appreciated. If any writer wishes to have their content amended or removed, please contact the editor at - firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com. Thank you. Phyllis Stenerson, Paideia LLC 612.331.1929 - firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com - - http://www.ProgressiveValues.org www.ProgressiveValues.org Paideia (pu-di'uh) is an ancient Greek philosophy of educating for citizenship to create an ideal society ______________________________________________________________________ Click to view this email in a browser http://hosted.vresp.com/817899/d691e27b46/TEST/TEST/ If you no longer wish to receive these emails, please reply to this message with "Unsubscribe" in the subject line or simply click on the following link: http://cts.vresp.com/u?d691e27b46/TEST/TEST ______________________________________________________________________ Click below to forward this email to a friend: http://oi.vresp.com/f2af/v4/send_to_friend.html?ch=d691e27b46 ______________________________________________________________________ This message was sent by Phyllis Stenerson - Progressive Values using Locus Interactive Phyllis Stenerson - Paideia LLC 3401 Colfax Avenue South #106 Minneapolis, Minnesota 55408 US
Progressive Values e-letter October 25, 2013 Ideas we need to talk about HTML version Searching America's Soul All of the various fields of human inquiry -- theology and philosophy and morality and psychology - meet rather beautifully in politics. And sometimes I wonder if politics isn't exactly that,it's the taking of all the sort of great ineffable and trying to make them have some meaning in the actually historical moment on earth in which we live. Tony Kushner - writer of the movie "Lincoln" - interview with Bill Moyers To all Americans - The shutdown debacle pulled back the curtain and revealed some deep dark issues at the core of our crisis in American democracy. There has been an outpouring of commentary from diverse voices on a broad range of topics within this complex scenario raising issues that have been under the radar until now. It's now indisputable that our American democracy is in the greatest peril since the Civil War and change must come effectively and rapidly from the grassroots up. Especially revealing was coverage, particularly via social media, of the values and ideas driving the political posturing and maneuvering. The shutdown had little to do with the actual debt or deficit and everything to do with a narrow ideology, toxic certitude, delusions of superiority and lust for power . Widespread consensus that this conservative extremist worldview is dangerous gives me the moral energy needed to continue seeking dialogue and understanding among the citizenry. It has been common knowledge for some time that the Republican Party is controlled by its Tea Party faction. An entrenched hatred for secular government and liberals is a major force in the Tea Party ideology. Ever-present racism and the threat of violence have grown exponentially since the election of Barack Obama as President. The passion of some in that fringe element is rooted in the conviction that America is a "Christian nation" and should be ruled by Biblical principles. This movement is called Dominionism or Reconstructionism and has been part of the culture for many years. "End times" theology is often a part of this mindset and came to the public's attention during the candidacies of Gov. Sarah Palin and Gov. Rick Perry. The fact that this faction calls themselves "Values Voters" while they help the rich to get richer and the poor to get poorer, is infuriating. Their false labeling of progressives as being "morally deficient" and "depraved" makes me furious. Close observers of the moral dimensions of politics have been concerned about this right wing movement since its emergence in the early 1980s. General awareness and alarm have been fairly low until recently. There are many individuals and organizations within the progressive movement and mainline Christians that are deeply involved in confronting the hypocrisy and cruelty of this extremist ideology but a cohesive strategy has not yet emerged. Liberals, Democrats and Progressives have long been inept at articulating the moral values grounding their political philosophy. Americans treasure their democracy (even when complaining about the government) and the principles upon which it founded. Freedom of, and freedom from, religion along with free speech are precious to us. Tolerance for a wide range of opinions and cultural diversity is an American characteristic. However, when a small faction - made up of big money, skilled operatives, "grassroots" organizing and Members of Congress who are motivated by this extremist right wing ideology - amasses enough power to shut down the government, a line has been crossed. (see Robert Reich's comments at left). It's critically important that citizens learn about this insurgency and organize to fight back so that American democracy stays firmly rooted in its inherently progressive values. There are many components of this crisis with faith and values playing a major role. The study of moral politics has been my priority for the past eight years. I've collected more information than I ever thought possible when this project began and have posted selected articles on the internet for citizen education. All are welcome to use this body of knowledge and those progressives with a bent for political philosophy are strongly urged to dig in. With audacious faith, Phyllis Stenerson We must move ahead with audacious faith. The moral arc of the universe is long but it bends toward justice. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. * * * There is such a thing as a crime against the soul of a nation. A person or a political party can deliberately incite actions that diminish the strength, the integrity, and the overall well-being of a nation's inner core. America's soul is in a fragile state...We see that in the near hatred between the Republicans and Democrats, between liberals and conservatives, between free-thinkers and evangelicals that continues to fester...we now have a public that cannot discern lies from truth... Crimes Against the Soul of America by Carolyn Myss, published on Huffington Post,September 5, 2009 Despite such terminology as "fiscal cliff" and "debt ceiling," the great debate taking place in Washington now has relatively little to do with financial issues. It is all about ideology. It is all about economic winners and losers in American society. It is all about the power of Big Money. It is all about the soul of America...We are entering a pivotal moment in the modern history of our country. Do the elected officials in Washington stand with ordinary Americans -- working families, children, the elderly, the poor -- or will the extraordinary power of billionaire campaign contributors and Big Money prevail? The American people, by the millions, must send Congress the answer to that question. The Soul of America by Senator Bernie Sanders, published by Common Dreams, January 9, 2013 * * * We acknowledge our transgressions, our shortcomings, our smugness, our selfishness and our pride. Deliver us from the hypocrisy of attempting to sound reasonable while being unreasonable. Chaplain Barry C. Black in one of his daily opening prayers in United States Senate, New York Times,October 7, 2013 Go to www.ProgressiveValues.org for articles, excerpts, quotations and more. To receive this e-letter directly, go to bottom left of home page and sign up. We are, or at least we used to be,a nation of moral ideals. Reclaiming America's Soul by Paul Krugman,New York Times, April 24, 2009 Politics is noble because it involves personal compromise for the public good. Why We Love Politics by David Brooks,New York Times, November 22, 2012 I am convinced that if we are to get on the right side of the world revolution, we as a nation must undergo a radical revolution of values. We must rapidly begin the shift from a thing-oriented society to a person-oriented society. When machines and computers, profit motives and property rights, are considered more important than people, the giant triplets of racism, extreme materialism, and militarism are incapable of being conquered. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Do not retreat to the convenience of being overwhelmed. Ruth W. Messinger We can choose to use our lives for others to bring about a better and more just world for our children. CÉsar ChÁvez Politics is what we create out of what we do, what we hope for, what we dare to imagine. Paul Wellstone Religion without humanity is poor human stuff. Sojourner Truth From Robert Reich, posted on Facebook: Suppose a relatively small group financed by a handful of billionaires (1) takes over state governments in order to redistrict, gerrymander, require voter IDs, purge voter rolls, and otherwise suppress the votes of the majority; (2) secretly bankrolls candidates for these safe seats who pledge to shrink and dismember the government; (3) then, once these candidates are elected, has them shut down the government in order to repeal or amend laws the plotters dislike; (4) then forces the nation to default on its debts and thereby throws the economy into a tailspin in order to get their way; and (5) runs a vast PR campaign to convince the American public of big lies about laws the plotters dislike or policies they seek. Would you call this an attempted coup d'etat? If not, what would you call it? And what would you do about it? Robert Reich, Facebook, October 7, 2013 Articles posted by topic include - Seditious conspiracy - Shutdown crisis - Right wing religious extremism - America's Soul - Government's moral authority The Spiritual Crisis Underlying American Politics By John Amodeo, PsychCentral.com, October 14, 2013 - The shutdown of good governance by Fred Hiatt, Washington Post, October 6 , 2013 A Federal Budget Crisis Months in the Planning by Sheryl Gay Solberg and - Mike McIntire, New York Times, October 5, 2013 Meet the Evangelical Cabal Orchestrating the Shutdown, BillMoyers.com, October 9, 2013 - Ignore the Spin: This Debt Ceiling Crisis is Not Politics as Usual by John Light, BillMoyers.com, October 9, 2013 The Radicalization of the GOP is the Most Important Political Story Today by Joshua Holland, Bill Moyers.com, October 10, 2013 Many in G.O.P. Offer Theory: Default Wouldn't Be That Bad by Jonathan Weisman, New York Times, October 8, 2013 The American Public's Shocking Lack of Policy Knowledge is a Threat to Progress and Democracy By Justin Doolittle,Truthout, October 12, 2013 Racism and Cruelty Drive GOP Health Care Agenda By Robert Scheer, Truthdig, October 13, 2013 The Radical Christian Right and the War on Government by Chris Hedges, TruthDig.com, posted on CommonDreams.org, October 7, 2013 How Christian Delusions Are Driving the GOP Insane by Amanda Marcotte, AlterNet, October 9, 2013 Recent e-letters - Status quo or change? 9/19/13 - The battle for America's soul 10/4/13 Phyllis Stenerson, Paideia LLC 612.331.1929 - firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com - ProgressiveValues.org Paideia (pu-di'uh) is an ancient Greek philosophy of educating for citizenship to create an ideal society ______________________________________________________________________ Click to view this email in a browser http://hosted.vresp.com/817899/6b03b3c0da/TEST/TEST/ If you no longer wish to receive these emails, please reply to this message with "Unsubscribe" in the subject line or simply click on the following link: http://cts.vresp.com/u?6b03b3c0da/TEST/TEST ______________________________________________________________________ Click below to forward this email to a friend: http://oi.vresp.com/f2af/v4/send_to_friend.html?ch=6b03b3c0da ______________________________________________________________________ This message was sent by Phyllis Stenerson - Paideia LLC using Locus Interactive Phyllis Stenerson - Paideia LLC 3401 Colfax Avenue South #106 Minneapolis, Minnesota 55408
Fair Use Notice: These pages contain copyrighted material the use of which has not been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. This website distributes this material without profit for educational purposes. We believe this constitutes a fair use of any such copyrighted material as provided for in 17 U.S.C. § 107. The many wise and articulate writers who share their knowledge with the public via the internet are profoundly appreciated. If any writer wishes to have their content amended or removed, please contact the editor at - firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com. Thank you.
Ideas we need to talk about – e-letter of September 19, 2013 from ProgressiveValues.org by Phyllis Stenerson
Changes in America and the world over the past decade have been stunning. The magnitude and consequences are almost too much to comprehend causing most people to tune out. America is at a trajectory moment, facing multiple crises and incomparable opportunity.
Change must come from the grassroots up. What each of us does or does not do in the coming months will make a difference in ways we can’t know now, can barely imagine. The choice is stark – do nothing and allow the disastrous status quo to continue or be a part of the grassroots movement for long term, systemic change for the common good.
Our American democracy is dangling by the slimmest of threads. Now when wise leadership is most needed, we’re immersed in a political quagmire. Those elected and sworn to represent we citizens in Congress are, with a few valuable exceptions, failing miserably. Unprecedented power is being wielded by unelected operatives to serve their own agendas. We, the people, the 99%, must seize the power granted to us in the Constitution.
What makes this hinge of history tragically significant is that this time the facts indicate the future of humanity is at stake. Virtually everything and everybody are impacted. Environmental threats, perpetual war, persistent racism and economic injustice are among the crises stealing the future from our children. Major change is overdue and essential.
Another point of difference from other times is that we have access to unlimited information and ways to connect with other people that can quite literally change the world. You won’t hear about it from the main stream media, but all around the globe countless people are immersed in making change for the common good. The excitement is palpable.
My wakeup call came when the Bush administration prepared to invade Iraq. I had to find out how this horrific act could be possible. Although I have been deeply involved in politics for many years, I realized my knowledge was sadly limited so I immersed myself in self-education and the progressive movement. It has been fascinating!
The Big Picture is made up of countless components, each one needing assessment, and most likely change. Underlying and surrounding all facets of public policy and society are the intangibles, the ideas that shape our understanding of the world and our place in it – worldview.
Worldview is the focus of this work. Worldview is our moral truth and intellectual truth – faith and reason – our philosophy of life. Religion and spirituality play an oversized role in politics today. The epidemic of anti-intellectualism must be reversed. Information and ideas that have been pumped into the public consciousness over the years must be peer reviewed by we, the people.
How do we know right or wrong? True or false? Smart or stupid?
The mainstream media rarely has the time, interest or context to communicate these ideas. Opinion is often skewed to favor corporate sponsors. The culture wars and religion wars are real, awesomely complex and key to influencing public opinion and making change.
Selected information and commentary have been posted on my website to help speed up the learning curve for others. No one could possibly understand the depth and scope of cultural factors impacting our politics and culture without purposeful learning. What is needed now is to take a deep, broad look at the Big Picture and how each issue is impacted by worldview. Countless citizens are doing exemplary work on specific issues such as climate change, gun control, health care and many more. Fewer of us are inclined to study the history and philosophy at the core of the American experience.
I want others who like to study civics and the humanities to connect with one another and collaboratively ignite a national conversation. Public dialogue about the big picture and radical (root) ideas is essential to understand and communicate why and how we must change the world.
I think people will be drawn into this conversation if we frame it not as getting involved in politics, but as participating in democracy.
Ideas we need to talk about include the nexus of religion and politics, the moral values of climate change and income inequality, how special interests have shaped worldviews in our country over the past 40 year and much more. To help find focus in this enormous concept, I am trying to connect as directly as possible public thought and opinion with federal government policy, particularly as relates to the future of our grandchildren. Dialogue about ideas embedded within the Big Picture is applicable to any particular area of interest or expertise.
There is already a lot happening in this arena to build upon. There is a critical need for organizations with resources and expertise to provide leadership and coordination. That is something I cannot do and am longing for others to step up and make it work. My work is available for use by all. Please let me know what’s happening – Phyllis@progressivevalues.org. Thank you.
We must move forward in the days ahead with audacious faith. The moral arc of the universe is long but it bends toward justice. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
Recent relevant articles
The End Game for Democracy by Bill Moyers, billmoyers.com August 23, 2013
* * * * * * *
Sometimes people call me an idealist. Well, that is the way I know I am an American… America is the only idealistic nation in the world.
What the people want is very simple. They want an America as good as its promise. Barbara Jordan
The test of the morality of a society is what it does for its children.
When you place a high value on truth, you have to think for yourself.
Dr. Cornel West
No sensible decision can be made any longer without taking into account not only the world as it is, but the world as it will be.
Time doesn’t change things. People change things.
Policy is driven by more than politics, however. It is equally driven by ideas.
http://p0.vresp.com/ZDU6MS Link to e-letter online