Millennial Review – Daily Review July 22nd

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MR Daily Review

July 22nd

1. Biden unveils laughably small climate package of $2.3 billion, while spending $37 billion on police. 

Joe Biden announced a $2.3 billion dollar climate package with a specific emphasis on carbon capture technology. While any step toward fighting climate change is obviously better than nothing, $2.3 billion in the face of climate catastrophe can barely be considered a step. Instead, its more like a sad gesture. Considering the original BBB sought to spend some trillion dollars plus on climate and related infrastructure – with 2 trillion specifically for climate change – this new ‘plan’ is orders of magnitudes smaller than a package that was already smaller than what we need. The paltry number is stark when compared to Biden’s announcement this same week that he plans to spend $37 billion investing in police and “fighting crime.” Biden’s priorities are clear and they are 100% wrong. The crimes that need fighting are the ones perpetrated on humanity by the fossil fuel industry. Instead, Biden is going to give police billions to make our communities less safe.

2. Steve Bannon found guilty of two counts of criminal contempt of congress. 

After refusing to comply with the January 6th committee’s subpoena last Fall, Bannon was charged by the Justice Department. Today, the 12 person jury returned the guilty verdict after a trial that included testimony from FBI agents who attested that Bannon’s decision was motivated by his determination to stand with Trump. The initial subpoena had ordered Bannon testify and disclose information to the committee. While Bannon and other Trump allies have long held the entire January 6th committee is a sham and a political show trial if anything, Bannon has waffled on this in recent months, indicating a willingness to testifying. But, it
looks like it wasn’t enough to save him. Bannon is looking at a minimum of 30 days and as much as a year in jail. Bannon long told the committee that he was not required to disclose to the committee as the information they sought is protected by executive privilege. The court didn’t buy that argument and after a two day trial Steve Bannon was found guilty on all charges.

3. LABOR UPDATE: Cleveland wins Starbucks 200th union, Amy’s Kitchen union busting, and employees win union votes in NJ and LA. 

Starbucks union campaign marches on as a Cleveland Starbucks voted to form a union, making it the 200th store to do so. This successful union vote comes after a string of store closings many suggested were an explicit attempt at union busting. Joining the union busters is Amy’s Kitchen, purveyor of ready-made healthy and organic, is taking a similar tact to Starbucks. On July 18, Amy’s announced it is closing the San Jose plant that was the center of worker organizing. The plant was actively working toward a union vote, and the closure comes just one month after Unite HERE filed numerous complaints against the company, including illegal firings, poor working conditions and abusive practices by management. The situation is remarkably similar to the union busting efforts at No Evil Foods last summer, something about trendy organic food companies makes them think their brand is immune to the damage that comes from exploiting workers, so they do it anyway. It’s not just workers at Starbucks, Amy’s Kitchen and No Evil Foods, however – all around the economy workers are organizing. Take Medieval Times in New Jersey where workers recently successfully voted to unionize, fighting for better conditions. After decades of being some of the only non-union workers on set, commercial production workers are unionizing with IATSE after long being subjected to dangerous and abusive conditions.

4. NYPD murders 18 year old Raymond Chaluisant over a toy water gun. 

An off duty New York City correctional officer murdered an 18 year old in the Bronx. The officer Dion Middleton was charged with murder, manslaughter, and criminal possession of a firearm after shooting Raymond Chaluisant as he played with what the NYPD called “a water pellet gun” that might just as easily be classified a squirt gun. The toy Chaluisant had has been extremely popular on Tik Tok this summer and is very obviously a toy and should have been treated as precisely that. Even if it were a “water pellet gun” it is unfathomable that could be held out as a justification for the murder, as NYPD seemed to try and do by posting about the difference in characterization of the toy Chaluisant had before he was murdered. Yet another police murder. And the justification is a squirt gun. In the US the police seemingly don’t need a justification to murder you, especially if you’re black or brown. This case is just another example of that power being used indiscriminately. Thankfully charges were pressed – but that won’t be enough to bring about the the structural changes required to stop these murders from happening to begin with. Instead, the police get rewarded for their rampant murder sprees with $37 billion without a peep about inflation.

5. COVID case rate up almost 20% as new variant powered wave seems imminent. 

The new BA.5 variant is highly transmissible, and responsible for the majority of new infections. Case rates have spiked over 20% in the last week, leaving some major cities wondering whether mask mandates should be back on the table. The rise of BA.5 just shows how ineffective our COVID response has been all along. The vast majority of the country has just gone back to normal ignoring the fact that even in the waning months we’ve experienced there are still hundreds of people dying a day. Now because we’ve all but done away with any response, that number is once again on the rise. It’s always worth remembering that over a million people have died of COVID. That was a policy choice and it’s unfortunately one we seem committed to keep making.

And on that note, have a great weekend everyone! Catch us on Sunday at 12:30 ish on Twitch. For evergreen content, check us out on the pod <3

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