Daily Archives: July 13, 2011

The Nation: ALEC Exposed

-By John Nichols

July 12, 2011- “Never has the time been so right,” Louisiana State Representative Noble Ellington told conservative legislators gathered in Washington to plan the radical remaking of policies in the states. It was one month after the 2010 midterm elections. Republicans had grabbed 680 legislative seats and secured a power trifecta—control of both legislative chambers and the governorship—in twenty-one states. Ellington was speaking for hundreds of attendees at a “States and Nation Policy Summit,” featuring GOP stars like Texas Governor Rick Perry, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich and House Majority Leader Eric Cantor. Convened by the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC)—“the nation’s largest, non-partisan, individual public-private membership association of state legislators,” as the spin-savvy group describes itself—the meeting did not intend to draw up an agenda for the upcoming legislative session. That had already been done by ALEC’s elite task forces of lawmakers and corporate representatives. The new legislators were there to grab their weapons: carefully crafted model bills seeking to impose a one-size-fits-all agenda on the states.

In These Times: Publicopoly Exposed

How ALEC, the Koch brothers and their corporate allies plan to privatize government.

-By Beau Hodai

July 11, 2011- On February 25, 2011, Florida State Representative Chris Dorworth (R-Lake Mary) introduced HB 1021. The bill sought to curtail the political power of unions by prohibiting public employers from deducting any amount from an employee’s pay for use by an employee organization (i.e., union dues) or for any political activity (i.e., the portion of union dues used for lobbying or for supporting candidates for office).

Furthermore, HB 1021 stated that, should a union seek to use any portion of dues independently collected from members for political activity, the union must obtain annual written authorization from each member.

ALEC: The Voice of Corporate Special Interests In State Legislatures

Source: Right Wing Watch

Introduction
When state legislators across the nation introduce similar or identical bills designed to boost corporate power and profits, reduce workers rights, limit corporate accountability for pollution, or restrict voting by minorities, odds are good that the legislation was not written by a state lawmaker but by corporate lobbyists working through the American Legislative Exchange Council. ALEC is a one-stop shop for corporations looking to identify friendly state legislators and work with them to get special-interest legislation introduced. It’s win-win for corporations, their lobbyists, and right-wing legislators. But the big losers are citizens whose rights and interests are sold off to the highest bidder.

Winning Progressive: Smart ALEC University – Are Your State Legislators Being Indoctrinated?

-By Jillian Barclay

July 6, 2011- Conservative front group ALEC, the American Legislative Exchange Council, who I’ve written about previously here, is sponsoring a legislative training and indoctrination session in New Orleans on August 1st through August 6th. Your state legislators are invited to attend and LEARN! LEARN! LEARN!

ALEC will teach your reps how to present laws (pre-written by corporations). The legislation runs the gamut from union-busting bills, laws that restrict voting, privatizing and selling off your state’s assets, and laws that rid your state of those onerous environmental protections that make your air clean enough to breathe and your water safe enough to drink.

New Petition by the Center for Media & Democracy PR Watch: TELL CORPORATIONS TO DUMP ALEC!

Why are major corporations risking their reputation by cozying up behind closed doors with the Koch Brothers and Big Tobacco to manipulate state laws throughout the country? The Center for Media and Democracy has uncovered that smoke-filled back room where Fortune 500 firms and right-wing politicians craft the bills that undermine our wages, our legal rights, our voting rights, and our democracy – and it is called ALEC.

We are sending letters to the corporate leadership of the American Legislative Exchange Council (Bayer, Pfizer, GlaxoSmithKline, Wal-Mart, Kraft, Coca-Cola, State Farm, Johnson and Johnson, AT&T, Koch, Altria/Phillip Morris USA, Reynolds Tobacco, Centerpoint 360, American Bail Coalition, Diageo, Energy Future Holdings, Exxon Mobile, Intuit, Peabody Energy, PhRMA, Reed Elsevier, Salt River Project, UPS) to demand that they withdraw their membership from ALEC and do what’s right for our democracy.

By clicking the link below, you’ll be able to send your own letters to companies. Don’t forget each firm also has Facebook pages and Twitter feeds where this message can become viral!

Common Dreams: Center for Media & Democracy Unveils Trove of Over 800 ALEC “Model Bills” Secretly Voted on by Corporations

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

July 13, 2011- Today, the Center for Media and Democracy (CMD) made available over 800 “model” bills and resolutions secretly voted on by corporate and legislative members of the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC). ALEC was created by right-wing political apparatchik Paul Weyrich in 1973. ALEC has become the premier institution for crafting and promoting model legislation and resolutions that largely benefit its corporate members. Until today, it has been difficult to trace the controversial and oddly uniform bills popping up in legislatures across the country directly to ALEC.

Veracity Stew: Koch Brothers’ Americans for Prosperity Sues New York

-By Beth

July 12, 2011- Here at The Stew, we’re pretty fond of the Other 98%, a genuine grassroots movement aimed at making government and democracy work for the little guys like me and you – the other 98% – not the moneyed interests that are twisting and distorting government policies to serve their own greedy interests.

The Other 98% now has a petition online detailing the suit against the State of New York, filed by Americans for Prosperity, the phony grassroots astro-turf organization funded by the Koch brothers and Koch Industries:

The Koch Brothers are at it again – and this time, they’ve taken aim at the entire east coast.

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