Organizations Working Against The Concentration Camps

In my post yesterday and in tweeting, I asked for resources on protests and other ways to do something about the concentration camps that the Trump administration is setting up for immigrants. Many thanks to those of you who responded!

First, call your congressional delegation, and keep calling.

In New York City, art installations represent children in cages, with audio from the camps. Police are taking the installations down. They were developed by an ad agency for RAICES, which works for refugees. More about RAICES below.

Portland, Maine, has set up emergency shelters for refugees from Angola and Congo. They come through Central America and Mexico to the US southern border, where they ask for asylum from wars in their countries. I’d love to say contact the mayor and tell him he’s doing a great job, or even send money (they need it), but his page has a funny email link that doesn’t work for me. Maybe it’ll work for you. Or perhaps this could be an example for your community.

I haven’t done any more than check out websites for the following organizations. I suspect that they are all legit, and some, like the American Friends Service Committee, obviously are.

ACLU Immigrants’ Rights and Detention Page

American Friends Service Committee is planning to demonstrate against the Homestead, Florida, detention center this Sunday, June 16. They will livestream the action at their website. The website also shows other demonstrations they are organizing In Washington, Oregon, California, and several eastern states, including West Virginia.

In McAllen, Texas, a March to End Zero-Tolerance & Family Separation is planned for June 23. It is hosted by the Texas Civil Rights Project. Twitter: @TXCivilRights

RAICES (Refugee and Immigrant Center for Education and Legal Services), the organization sponsoring the New York installations, is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit agency that provides free and low-cost legal services to underserved immigrant children, families, and refugees. They have offices in Austin, Corpus Christi, Dallas, Fort Worth, Houston and San Antonio. Twitter: @RAICESTexas

Annunciation House is a Christian group (Catholic, I think) that advocates for “those with no voice.” They are acting according to the Biblical precepts that others seem to have forgotten. “Accompanying the migrant, homeless and economically vulnerable peoples of the border since 1978.”

La Resistencia – Here is their description of themselves:

NWDC Resistance is a grassroots undocumented led movement that works to end the detention of immigrants and stop all deportations. Under the umbrella of the national #Not 1More campaign, NWDC Resistance supports and follows the leadership of those detained at the Northwest Detention Center in Tacoma, Washington demanding better treatment and conditions and the stop to all deportations.

They have Solidarity Days most Saturdays 8-11AM and/or 1-4PM outside the NWDC.


Twitter Accounts

Witness: Tornillo. Target: Homestead (@TornilloWitness) A group protesting the Homestead, Florida, detention center.

@NoKidsInCagesUS doesn’t give a description of themselves. Retweets other relevant organizations.

@BobMooreNews and @TexasMonthly do excellent reporting on detention centers, particularly in Texas.


C.R.E.A.M. Open Thread: Young Jared Is A Busy Little Oligarch

(Jeff Danziger via

… Small wonder he occasionally “forgets” minor details of his many, many important jobs in the Squatter-in-Chief’s administration. Such as sending out invitations and RSVPs for the ‘business conference’ intended to bring peace to the Middle East…

… Or mentioning the petty sums — I mean, a mere $90 million, that’s chump change! — from “opaque offshore entities” on his financial disclosure forms…

Read more

C.R.E.A.M. Open Thread: The McConnell-Chao Marriage Is *Mutually* Profitable

Guess it’s nice for the GOP senators who’ve handed their balls over to Mitch to know that, should his Russian funding ever dry up, he won’t be reduced to peddling his memoirs to support his lifestyle:

The Transportation Department under Secretary Elaine Chao designated a special liaison to help with grant applications and other priorities from her husband Mitch McConnell’s state of Kentucky, paving the way for grants totaling at least $78 million for favored projects as McConnell prepared to campaign for reelection.

Chao’s aide Todd Inman, who stated in an email to McConnell’s Senate office that Chao had personally asked him to serve as an intermediary, helped advise the senator and local Kentucky officials on grants with special significance for McConnell — including a highway-improvement project in a McConnell political stronghold that had been twice rejected for previous grant applications…

The circumstances surrounding the Owensboro grant and another, more lucrative grant to Boone County, highlight the ethical conflicts in having a powerful Cabinet secretary married to the Senate’s leader and in a position to help him politically. McConnell has long touted his ability to bring federal resources to his state, which his wife is now in a position to assist.

Chao’s designation of Inman as a special intermediary for Kentucky — a privilege other states did not enjoy — gave a special advantage to projects favored by her husband, which could in turn benefit his political interests. In such situations, ethicists say, each member of a couple benefits personally from the success of the other…

(Much more at the link. As with so many similar one-man pork projects, the money seems to have drained away on ‘showpiece’ architectural projects that benefited a small cadre of connected businessmen without providing much assistance to the voters who really needed some help.)

The power couple isn’t particulary covert about their money-spinning prowess. Bess Levin, at Vanity Fair:

Last week, the New York Times reported that the secretary tried to bring family members to government meetings with Chinese officials, despite said family members having major financial entanglements in China. Last month, the Wall Street Journal found that she’d made a $40,000 profit on her stake in Vulcan, the nation’s largest construction materials supplier, despite having promised—over a year ago!—to divest from the company, on whose board she sat…

Cole linked to the NYTimes article when it appeared, but seriously: Can you imagine the outrage if a Democratic Senator’s wife did anything like this?

Ms. Chao is the top Trump official overseeing the American shipping industry, which is in steep decline and overshadowed by its Chinese competitors.

Her efforts on behalf of the family business — appearing at promotional events, joining her father in interviews with Chinese-language media — have come as Foremost has interacted with the Chinese state to a remarkable degree for an American company.

Foremost has received hundreds of millions of dollars in loan commitments from a bank run by the Chinese government, whose policies have been labeled by the Trump administration as threats to American security. The company’s primary business — delivering China’s iron ore and coal — is intertwined with industries caught up in a trade war with the United States. That dispute stems in part from the White House’s complaints that China is flooding the world with subsidized steel, undermining American producers.
Read more

Monday Evening Open Thread: Like He’ll Have A Choice…

President Donald Trump, facing calls for impeachment from some Democrats, sought on Monday to draw a contrast between himself and former President Richard Nixon, who resigned in 1974 before lawmakers could remove him from office….

Trump’s comments came the same day John Dean, the former White House counsel to Nixon, testified before the House Judiciary Committee and drew comparisons between the president and his former boss. Following the testimony, Trump said “John Dean’s been a loser for many years.”

Some Democrats are pushing for impeachment proceedings linked to former Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 election and whether the president obstructed justice…

His foreign paymasters remove their support, and within 24 hours the Squatter-in-Chief (plus whichever members of his family he chooses to share the news with — tough luck, Eric! Too bad, Melania!) will be hiding in a country with no extradiction treaty. Doubt the Bush clan will let him into their Paraguay holdings, though…

Late Night Open Thread: Nice “Work” If You Can Get It…

Jon Chait, NYMag, “Why Are Republican Small Donors So Easy to Swindle?”:

Republicans have long complained, usually in private, that their fundraising apparatus is overrun with fraudsters. National Review’s Jim Geraghty has a column, “The Right’s Grifter Problem,” saying what many of them have been whispering. Many of President Trump’s most publicly strident loyalists are in the business of raising money for political projects that spend virtually all their funds on operating expenses…

Grifters go where the marks are:

A former pro football player who serves on the National Rifle Association board was paid $400,000 by the group in recent years for public outreach and firearms training. Another board member, a writer in New Mexico, collected more than $28,000 for articles in NRA publications. Yet another board member sold ammunition from his private company to the NRA for an undisclosed sum.

The NRA, which has been rocked by allegations of exorbitant spending by top executives, also directed money in recent years that went to board members — the very people tasked with overseeing the organization’s finances.

In all, 18 members of the NRA’s 76-member board, who are not paid as directors, collected money from the group during the past three years, according to tax filings, state charitable reports and NRA correspondence reviewed by The Washington Post.

The payments received by about one-quarter of board members, the extent of which has not previously been reported, deepen questions about the rigor of the board’s oversight as it steered the country’s largest and most powerful gun rights group, according to tax experts and some longtime members…

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