In a sweeping move that follows a wave of divestment activism in Portland, Oregon, and across the country, the Portland City Council voted last week to pull all of the city’s investments in corporate bonds and securities.
The decision was a major victory for a broad coalition of activists who have pushed for the city to end its investments in corporations that have questionable records on the environment and human rights, including ties to the Dakota Access pipeline, the private prison industry and the Israeli occupation of Palestine.
Portland has had a “do not buy” list for a while, and the City Council had considered adding Caterpillar, Wells Fargo, J.P. Morgan Chase and six other companies to the banned list. But the Council finally decided that didn’t go far enough:
After activists organized rallies and packed council meetings with hours of testimony, the council agreed last week to end corporate investments altogether.
Hyung Nam, a Portland public school teacher and former member of the Socially Responsible Investments Committee (SRIC) behind the proposed “Do Not Buy” list, said the vote was a victory for “human rights and climate
Of course, dropping evil corporate bonds and investing instead in municipal ones will result in lower yields, but is any price too high to pay for socialism?
Further down the coast, California Democrats are pushing a plan that will end private health insurance:
Under the proposed plan, everyone would be covered — from undocumented residents to Medicare and Medicaid recipients as well as employees who already get their health insurance through work.
The bill’s authors say their proposed single-payer system would include these features:
* Coverage for all medical care, including inpatient, outpatient, emergency care, dental, vision, mental health and nursing home care.
* No co-pays or insurance deductibles.
* Ability to choose your own doctor from a huge list of health care providers rather than an insurer’s network.
Even the Democrats admit that they have no earthly idea how all this will be paid for - oh wait, of course they do: raise taxes.
(UPDATE) One good thing about this proposal is that it illustrates why so many object to ObamCare, with its one-size-fits-all approach to medical care in this country. Allowing 50 states to experiment with different programs would actually be a good thing: there are bound to be some good ideas out there, and if California can find some, more power to it.
The trouble is, how on earth do advocates intend to provide cable-to-grave coverage, including dental, mental and nursing home care, without further bankrupting the state? $200 billion high speed train programs would presumably have to go, as well as many of the other wildly expensive green schemes currently being funded. And with the legislature having just sped up the end of fossil fuel use by 2030, what's going to power the economy needed to pay for all this?
Still, I wish them luck - you can learn from failure, too.