This is your Moment of Clarity #223: There are roughly 28 million Americans who can't find a job or have given up looking. Many more than that are suffering. And I just want to remind everyone, it's not your fault. Don't believe the "personal responsibility" bullshit that gets thrown around. This is not your fault.
I know 11,000 people who aren’t too excited about these “transformations.” Citigroup announced that it will absorb a tax charge of $1 billion for the quarter and eliminate about 11,000 jobs. The third-biggest U.S. banks CEO said that the move was a “logical” step in the bank’s “transformation.” The plan of restructuring also includes branch closings:
The latest eliminations amount to about 4.2 percent of Citigroup’s workforce of 262,000 people at the end of September. The largest share of reductions, about 6,200 jobs, will come from the global consumer-banking business, Citigroup said. The lender expects to sell or scale back consumer operations in Pakistan, Paraguay, Romania, Turkey and Uruguay.
An additional 2,600 jobs will be cut in the operations and technology group and global functions. Citi Holdings, the unit disposing of unwanted assets, will eliminate about 350 positions.
The plan will save about $900 million in 2013, and projected annual savings will exceed $1.1 billion beginning in 2014, the company said. Annual revenue will drop about $300 million, according to the forecast. The $1 billion charge this quarter is before taxes. An additional $100 million of related charges will come in the first half of next year.
Those of you bankers who didn't have your jobs slashed, not to worry about your annual bonus. While it will be cut by 10%, you'll still receive it. What's that, you're crying over the 10%? Oh, good grief!
According to the Organization United for Respect at Walmart, 1,000 protests occurred at Wal-Mart stores across 46 states, with hundreds of workers walking off the job in an unprecedented decentralized, open-source strike at the retail giant. Local Occupy groups supported actions in dozens of cities. OWS joined with 99 Pickets, ALIGN, the Retail Action Project, and others to show solidarity to Wal-mart workers in Secaucus, New Jersey. Despite attempts by Wal-Mart's propaganda department to downplay the events, the latest massive wave of strikes and solidarity actions at Wal-Mart forced even the corporate media to pay attention, and put the 1% on notice: When we work together, another world is possible. We do not have to accept poverty, low wages, or unfair working conditions with no benefits while six members of the Walton family are worth more than the bottom 42% of American families combined.
However, the struggle is far from over! Today's inspiring actions point the way forward. Please continue to support OUR Wal-Mart and all low-wage workers in the struggle for economic justice and show support for the courageous workers and unemployed people on the frontlines against income inequality.
This is a call to unemployed and precarious people, workers, retired, students, undocumented migrants, homeless… Let us all demonstrate together on the same day all over Europe against poverty-inducing policies in order to build transnational solidarity and to move forward in the convergence of our various movements.
In the wake of the European general strike on November 14, Agora99, a European conference of social movements meeting in Madrid in November (http://99agora.net/) calls for a European day of action against precariousness on December 1 as well as to the drafting of a new charter of social rights.
What new chart can we imagine and how to defend our rights together? On December 1 let us organize public debates, popular assemblies, cacerolas, marches, direct actions, occupations, etc.
Brought to you by hip-hop superproducer Pharrell Williams, i am OTHER is a new channel and cultural movement dedicated to Thinkers, Innovators and Outcasts. Programs explore the pursuit of individuality, the defiance of expectations and the arrival of a new class of visionaries.
In this short film, "Voice of Art - The Tax Dodgers Part I," Gan Golan, street theater artist and co-author of best-sellers "Goodnight Bush" and "The Adventures of Unemployed Man," leads a mock baseball team called "The Tax Dodgers." Golan's guerrilla art tactics developed through his student-activist years at MIT, battling the World Trade Organization in Cancun, Mexico, and eventually taking on powerful corporations alongside Occupy Wall Street.
Extended federal unemployment benefits will soon begin to start running out, despite a decision by Congress to renew the program. The federal benefit extensions supported unemployment payments for up to 99 weeks to help the unemployed until the job market improved. When the program expired in February, Congress renewed it, but reduced the number of weeks payments could be sent and made it difficult for states to get the maximum amount of aid. Since then, 23 states have lost months of benefits and roughly 500,000 people are expected to lose their jobless benefits prematurely this year, including 70,000 in the next month alone.
In the video above, you'll see a 29-year-old woman die alone on the cold, concrete floor of a jail cell after pleading with hospital staff and police for help. She had already been to two other hospitals seeking help for the pain after what she thought was triggered by a sprained ankle. On her last day alive, she finally complained about her and refused to leave the hospital. The hospital had her arrested.
Anna Brown was homeless and had so much pain in her legs that she couldn’t walk.
When Brown, 29, refused to leave the emergency room at St. Mary’s Health Center in Richmond Heights, Mo., a suburb near inner St. Louis, the police thought she was on drugs and arrested her for trespassing. She’d already been examined, and a doctor said she was healthy enough to go to jail.
The police carried her into a jail cell by her arms and ankles, her body slackened. There were a couple of beds in the cell, but they left her on the concrete floor. A couple of officers stood by the door as she writhed and moaned, and then they walked away. “They thought she was a drug seeker,” an officer said later.
She had stopped moving within 15 minutes and was pronounced dead a short time later.
She’d had blood clots in her legs and lungs, an autopsy found, and no drugs in her system. Family members are now considering a lawsuit in the 6-month-old case, whose details were brought to light by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch in an investigation published Sunday that included video of Brown at the emergency room, in the police car and dying in her jail cell. She leaves behind two children and a raft of anger and confusion.
Anna Brown's spiral into poverty and homelessness is just as tragic as her death, and highlights failures within many systems that were in place to help the unemployed (Yes, Anna had been a working tax-payer) and women with children, and the homeless. It's frightening to think of how many more Anna's are out there struggling who now won't even have as much of a chance as Anna Brown after budget cuts everywhere hit those most in need. And Anna Brown, dead at 29, didn't have much of a chance at all.