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Alliance for a Just Society brings you an Institute for Pragmatic Practice’s symposium

Building Progressive Power in Rural America

March 28-30th 2012, Seattle Washington

In order to win progressive change in the U.S. we can not concede rural areas to the right-wing.  Those working in small town America are the ones making this fight.  In order to advance, we must share best practices, methods, ideas and strategies to gain ground.

The Institute for Pragmatic Practice’s primary goal is to initiate provocative discussions on both social justice ideas and methods of action. Join activists, analysts, visionaries and revolutionaries from around the country working in small towns, small cities and rural areas to explore these questions and more:

  • What about the economic meltdown is particular to rural America?
  • What are our ideas and practices for rebuilding and strengthening local economies and living wage jobs?
  • What are the shifts in demographics that we are seeing in our states and how are we building alliances?
  • What agenda is the right-wing moving that particularly impacts our areas?  How are we responding?

Join us!

Guest speakers include: Marcy Westerling, Rural Organizing Project; Devin Burghart, Institute for Research &  Education on Human Rights; Carol Burnett, Mississippi Low Income Childcare Initiative; Scott Douglas, Greater Birmingham Ministries; Ed Whitfield, Fund for Democratic Communities; Niel Ritchie, League of Rural Voters; Edwin Bender, National Institute on Money in State Politics; Kate Kanelstein, Vermont Workers Center.

For more information and to register click here!

Food Choices: Families or Corporations

 

Will Congress choose need or greed? Cutting the federal deficit means making some tough choices. The new report, Food Choices: Families or Corporations and online petition asks Congressional super committee members to look at bloated federal subsidies for giant corporations before they cut food assistance struggling families depend on.

Released in partnership with the Praxis Project, the report details the critical role the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s family nutrition programs play in feeding one out of eight Americans. Read more

Corporate Interests Dominate List of Top Super Committee Donors

Four banks, two large corporations, a conservative political action committee (PAC), and a law firm serving corporate, industrial, and financial institutions dominate the list of top 10 campaign donors that contributed to members of the bipartisan congressional “Super Committee,” setting the stage for a historic revenue showdown.

These entities contributed a total of $4.5 million, or 79 percent of total contributions on the top 10 list, to members of the newly formed group of six Democrats and six Republicans, according to a study by MapLight.org. Read more

Hitting the Jackpot

This is part thirteen in a series of posts that will explore some of the leading organizations from around the country that are engaged in unearthing and combating the influence of money in the political process.

In a state known for excess and wealth that does not extend to most of its residents, the Progressive Leadership Alliance of Nevada (PLAN) dug up the dirt on political campaign contributions. PLAN published three reports, one of which they titled the “Jackpot Report,” because they had found a stash of money politicians had been hiding from public record. Read more

Project Vote Smart

Role in the Landscape

This is part twelve in a series of posts that will explore some of the leading organizations from around the country that are engaged in unearthing and combating the influence of money in the political process.

Project Vote Smart (PVS) is a transparency/data organization with a vast collection of data on candidates and incumbents. Their website, http://votesmart.org/, allows users to search at the presidential, congressional, gubernatorial and state legislative levels. Read more

Good Jobs First

This is part ten in a series of posts that will explore some of the leading organizations from around the country that are engaged in unearthing and combating the influence of money in the political process.

Role in the Landscape

Good Jobs First focuses on corporate subsidies and works to promote corporate and government accountability around subsidies, economic development, and smart growth. They work with organizations by providing research, training, communications and consulting assistance. Read more

Sunlight Foundation

This is part nine in a series of posts that will explore some of the leading organizations from around the country that are engaged in unearthing and combating the influence of money in the political process.

Like MapLight.org, the Sunlight Foundation is a technology-oriented group that connects their own federal data (lobbyists and fundraisers) with other sources such as http://opensecrets.org/ and http://followthemoney.org/. Sunlight does not take positions on campaign finance reform or other issues. They are, however, very interested in training and supporting grassroots groups on the tools they offer.

The Sunlight Foundation provides funding for the creation of “cutting-edge tools to enable the media, bloggers and citizens to sift, share and combine government data in ways that are useful for them.” Read more