Sunday, November 30, 2014

Boycott Starbucks!







The coffee available at your corner store, coffee shop, or local supermarket by and large is provided by large multinational cutthroat corporations.  These corporations, together, effectively form a cartel, squeezing the payments made to coffee growers down to the minimum possible while still keeping coffee in production.  They also minimize payments to workers, minimize environmental protections, and maximize the prices consumers pay for their morning cup of brew.   

This profit production scheme forces coffee growers into the position of slashing expenses way below the minimum necessary to operate in an ethical, sustainable, and environmentally sound manner.  Many coffee growers employ child labor and pay slave wages.   Workers are housed in crowded shanties with no power, no running water, and without adequate sanitation.  Their clothing is old and wretched and there are no provisions for health care, sick leave, disability, or retirement.  The situation can be worse.  There are large coffee plantations, which produce your morning cup of brew, they utilize forced labor, well armed supervisors, and razor wire enclosed and guarded sleeping quarters.  

Labor abuses often do not stop at the farms where coffee is grown.   Starbucks in particular, pays its part time baristas low wages, and while it is open long hours, it does not offer guaranteed schedules.  In order to keep their Starbucks jobs baristas are seldom able to work a second job or pursue education or training.  And Starbucks makes a habit of doing everything it can to prevent unionization of its workers.  So far those efforts have been successful.   If all this wasn’t bad enough, Starbucks has also used prison labor to package your beans. 

All of this has been done to maximize profits. Those profits have been used, in part, to subvert our democracy.  Starbucks, again, has a huge lobbying machine, which it has used to reduce its corporate tax burden, while at the same time it is pushing to reduce the very same social safety nets that its own workers depend on to survive.   Starbucks, however, doesn’t stop there.   The CEO, Howard Schultz, coerced his baristas into supporting his ‘austerity’ campaign, and they were required to smile while they were at it.

For those concerned about the environment here at home and about factory farming and GMO’s, Starbucks is a member of the Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA), the lobbying group that has spent millions of dollars to defeat GMO labeling laws.  The milk and cream, as well as the food served in Starbucks, by and large come from chemical, corporate, factory farms using GMO seeds and feed.

And then there is the genocide and ethnic cleansing being perpetrated on Gaza and the West Bank.  Genocide and ethnic cleansing based on a radical and violent Zionism.  Howard Shultz, CEO of Starbucks, is an active Zionist.  Starbucks has made him rich, his net worth is estimated at 2.2 billion dollars, and his annual salary from Starbucks is $28.9 million.   That’s a lot of nickels and dimes available for Shultz to throw around at causes he believes in.  Unfortunately, his private interests are no more humanitarian than his business interests.

It is well documented that Howard Shultz, CEO of Starbucks, has supported and championed the goals of Zionism in the apartheid state of Israel.   The following article, on ‘Why We Must Boycott Starbucks,’ covers the information clearly: http://www.arabamericannews.com/news/news/id_1971 


Just in case anyone wonders if the on-going boycotts against Starbucks have changed Howard Shultz’s tune, please check out the following pro-Israel site, where Starbucks is listed as the Number 1—pro-Israeli company, “The Chairman and CEO of STARBUCKS, Howard Schultz, is an active Zionist.  In 1998 he was honored by the Jerusalem Fund of Aish HaTorah with 'The Israel 50th Anniversary Friend of Zion Tribute Award' for his services to the Zionist state in 'playing a key role in promoting close alliance between the United States and Israel.'  At a time when other businesses were desperately pulling out of Israel, Starbucks decided to help Israel's floundering economy and invest in Israel.  It has been revealed that Starbucks still continues to support Israel by sponsoring fund raisers for Israel.” From:  http://www.jerusalemchai.org/contents/read.cfm?categoryID=115&cID=1134


Better coffee is available.  If you are grabbing a cup on the go or just looking for a coffee shop to hang out in, any coffee shop is better than Starbucks.  A locally owned coffee shop is an awesome idea.  If they serve Certified Organic, Certified Fair Trade, and/or Certified Shade Grown Coffee—that’s even better.  


Next time you are shopping for coffee for your home or office, look for USDA Certified Organic, Certified Fair Trade, and/or Certified Shade Grown Coffee.  It might take a little homework, you might have to spend a little more money, but we create the world we live in by our spending habits.  

If you know of some great tasting and ethical coffee brands, please give them a shout out in comments! 

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Facebook Shareable Meme.


Please note, the facebook meme starts right off with Zionism.  If you need a subtle version for facebook let us know in comments.

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More information ~


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Ecological Issues, Coffee Growing & Processing:  

The Coffee Industry Is Worse Than Ever For The Environment:
 
For more information also see:

Starbucks, Factory Farms & GMO Foods:

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Labor Issues:

Starbucks, Coffee, & Child Labor:  http://ihscslnews.org/view_article.php?id=178



Starbucks Pays Poverty Wages:  http://www.starbucksunion.org/   

Starbucks, Union Busting, Barista Scheduling Issues:
See also:




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Starbucks and Lobbying:  

Starbucks Puts Lobbying on Corporate Menu:

Starbucks Wins Tax Loopholes:

How Starbucks' campaign cash is making its CEO look bad.

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Howard Shultz, CEO of Starbucks:

Net Worth: 


Palestinian Genocide Connection:

On-going Zionist Israeli Support:

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Facebook Shareable Meme.

Please note, the facebook meme starts right off with Zionism. If you need a subtle version for facebook let us know in comments.

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Saturday, November 29, 2014

Show your support for Palestine Day



International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People
End the Israeli Occupation



International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People
Show your support for Palestine

The United Nations General Assembly, in 1977, announced November 29th as the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People. The objective of this day is for the International community to focus attention on the fact Palestinian people live under Israeli occupation since 1948.  It is to highlight the fact that the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people continue to be oppressed and suppressed under the current Israeli apartheid system. 

The mission of International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People is to bring attention to the lack of concern exhibited by United Nation members for the indigenous inhabitants of Palestine. United Nation members went along with the preliminary suggestions of the Special Committee on Palestine to partition Palestine based upon the nationalist claims of the Zionist movement and European guilt for the Nazi Holocaust. Unfortunately, members of the United Nations Committee on Palestine did not predict the impractical of their solution to grant eight percent of the Jewish population fifty-six percent of the land, while reserving forty-three per cent of the land for ninety-two percent of the Palestinians.

The history of Palestine in photographs courtesy of the United Nations:

The complete UN Resolution for the Partition:

Two Israeli activists recorded their experience in the Palestinian occupied territories: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q_MDC2Gty4I , 

Official page for the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People: 




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Boycott for Peace!
http://boycott4peace.blogspot.com/
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Friday, November 28, 2014

Boycott HP





 HP is not on your shopping list!

 

 HP provides technology to support apartheid 



 HP profits from apartheid. 

 



This boycott covers more than computers and printers!   Calculators, cameras, phones, speakers, headphones and microphones, watches, and projectors are all produced by HP.  In fact, if it’s electronic, be sure to check the label.  Also watch out for LED lighting and replacement bulbs for many applications, including auto dashboards.

If you already own an HP printer, there are other companies that offer ink cartridges.  Check here for the list: http://www.globalexchange.org/economicactivism/hp/alternatives

If you own a business, HP offers software, servers, networking, security, and all kinds of integrated applications and hardware.  If you hire a consultant to help design a customized or integrated system of any kind, ask them what companies they represent.  HP is not on your list!

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“HP is involved in several contracts that directly violate international law and violate Palestinians’ human rights. HP has developed and maintained the Basel System, which is used at checkpoints deep inside occupied territory to restrict and control Palestinian freedom of movement—in their own land. In other contracts with the Israeli government, military and settlements, HP is aiding and abetting international law violations and systems of segregation.”  More information and a petition are available here:   http://org.salsalabs.com/o/703/p/dia/action/public/?action_KEY=11587

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The background image above shows a guarded apartheid gate in the Masha Salfit Wall.  Read about life behind the gate and see more photos here:   http://www.alhaq.org/10yrs/reports/testimonies/item/133-trapped-in-the-wall-masha-salfi

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HP was asked to sign a resolution establishing a committee for human rights issues.  They refused:  http://www.globalexchange.org/economicactivism/hp/joinus

HP Profits Decline This is a trend we want to see continue until they decide to stand up for human rights.  We can be the change!

HP Boycott in the News!  

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Stay in touch with the Boycott HP Movement:
https://www.facebook.com/HPboycott

Many other reasons to boycott HP are shared here:
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Boycott-HP/147076025413731

We boycott Israel for many other reasons, if you haven't already, you can read about some of them here: http://boycott4peace.blogspot.com/search/label/why%20we%20boycott 

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Facebook Sharable Meme!

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All photos used to produce image from Wikimedia Commons.

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Thursday, November 27, 2014

Don't Forget!



We are all in this together!



At the end of the day

remember . . .






It's up to us to be the change!



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 Photo courtesy of a reader.

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Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Ancient Cultural Roots



The quote below is from the illustrious, E.O. James in The Ancient Gods, regarding Palestinian culture between 5000 BC to 3000 BC.
 

"The highlands of Iran which extend north of Babylonia through Armenia to the Caucasus, Syria, and Palestine, lack the homogeneity of the river valleys.  In these steppe-lands a much more loosely organized life was inevitable, free from the complex commercial and industrial undertakings, social submissions, planning and mechanization of the settled urban communities."

This description, of the " . . . much more loosely organized life . . . " as compared to the " . . . complex commercial and industrial undertakings, social submissions, planning and mechanization of the settled urban communities  . . ." brings the conflicts of the West Bank very much to mind.  


In the documentary film, 5 Broken Cameras, which is a collaboration between Palestinian film maker, Emad Burnat, and an Israeli film maker, Guy Davidi; the contrast between the more loosely organized traditions of village life and the complex mechanization of a military regime are brought into a clear focus. A clear focus, illustrated by the current conflict over land and law in the West Bank of Palestine.

The Ancient Gods, is a rather dry and scholarly text.  It discuses the rise of cultures and religions in the Middle East, and their subsequent diffusion to the rest of the world, based on archeology and ancient records.

5 Broken Cameras is an amazing film for mature audiences.  Our review can be found here:
http://boycott4peace.blogspot.com/2014/11/5-broken-cameras.html


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Image ~  Palestinian Neolithic Arrowheads
From Wikimedia Commons


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Boycott for Peace!
http://boycott4peace.blogspot.com/
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Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Zionism and Media Influence



Zionist Influence on the American Media



" . . .  the reason for the failure of the U.S. Media to accurately portray the conflict between Israel and the Palestinian people . . . is that in America today . . .    the Zionist influence over the American media--and over American government policy making--is certainly greater than at any time in history . . . "

Every word worth reading:  http://americanfreepress.net/Supplements/Zayed%20Report.pdf

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Zionist Influence in the United States

 

 " . . .  the stifling control of the mass media by Zionists . . ."

The article is part of an on-going discussion of  the book,  Against Our Better Judgment: The hidden history of how the U.S. was used to create Israel, which will be one of Boycott for Peace's book club selections in a future month.

The article and the book are well worth reading:
http://dissidentvoice.org/2014/03/zionist-influence-in-the-united-states/

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Laughs Aside, Junkets Raise Serious Issues

 

" AIEF takes more than just members of Congress on trips to Israel; it takes journalists, too, on a regular basis. Discussing the latest Sea of Galilee events, Chris Matthews host of MSNBC’s“Hardball,” said on August 20: “I’ve been there a number of times, a trip sponsored by a pro-Israel group, Jewish group, very educational trips. They show you a lot about the geography of the land and the situation they’re facing with the Palestinians.”

From the Jewish Daily Forward: 
http://forward.com/articles/161528/laughs-aside-junkets-raise-serious-issues/?p=all#ixzz3JAE4pg5F 

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For more on how Zionism affects our government and our media please see our previous blog posts:


House Resolution 707

Peaceful Political Action 101


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There is also the issue of how Israel insists on editorial control of all news by corespondents who travel to the West Bank, Gaza, and East Jerusalem.  If they cross Israel's allowed editorial lines, they will not be allowed to work in Israel in the future nor are they allowed through the check-points which Israel controls at all points of entry to the West Bank, Gaza, and East Jerusalem.  Israel also has a history of targeting journalists living and working in Gaza, as well their homes, their families, media infrastructure, and the only electrical power plant in Gaza.  Resident journalists in the West Bank and East Jerusalem are often arrested and held without charges, they find themselves subject to evictions, home demolitions, harassment, and their check-point passes are often cancelled.  This prevents them from traveling from their homes to their work places and to other locations for the purposes of reporting and journalism.  We will be bringing you more on these issues in an up-coming blog posts.


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Boycott for Peace! 
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Monday, November 24, 2014

5 Broken Cameras

 

If you watch only one documentary this year, this should be it!


5 Broken Cameras has won seven prestigious awards.
More importantly, it is very moving, very personal, very human.
 It brings us into the soul of the struggle of modern Indigenous people who are facing the relentless annexation of their traditional lands by illegal settlers.


In the words of the people we meet, who essentially live as they always have, we hear the heartfelt echoes of Indigenous People everywhere:


“ . . .  more than feeding us, the land connects us.”   


 “This is our land . . .  We were born on this land, and we’ll die here.  We’ll live on this land for the rest of our lives.”   

 


This film shows the landscape, the people, and the struggle between those who respect and live in harmony with the land and those who wish to subdue the land in a rare and moving light.

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Official Web Site:

Awards:

Trailer:

Full length on YouTube:

Available by request from libraries and movie rental outlets; which is the best option!  The ‘Bonus’ section shouldn't be missed.  It offers an in depth story on how the film was made as well as enlightening interviews with the film makers.

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 “My third camera may have saved my life.  The bullet is lodged in it, as a reminder of life’s fragility.”   

 “Healing is a challenge in life.  It’s a victim’s sole obligation.  By healing you resist occupation.”   

“It takes strength to turn anger into something positive.”    

 Emad Burnat 

~ All quotes are from the film.

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Image from Wikimedia:
http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/0/05/5_Broken_Cameras.jpg

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Contribute!  If you have a favorite Palestinian DVD please use comments to tell us about it.  We may be able to feature your recommendation in an up-coming blog post.  Or, if you like, prepare a blurb similar to what we have done here, and if we are able to use it--you will get a by-line which you can use as a publication credit. Plus you will be helping to spread the word about great Palestinian films!

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Boycott for Peace!
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Sunday, November 23, 2014

Oh My Father, I am Yusif


Oh My Father, I am Yusif


by Mahmoud Darwish

Father! I am Yusif
Oh father!
My brothers neither love me
nor want me in their midst.
Oh father, they assault me,
they stone me and
with insults they shower me.
My brothers wish me dead
so they give their false eulogies.
They shut your door before me,
and from your field
I was expelled.
They poisoned my grapevines,
oh father!
When the passing breeze
jested with my hair,
they all became envious,
outraged at you and me.
What have I done to them, father,
and what loss have I caused?
Butterflies rest on my shoulder,
wheat bows toward me
and birds hover above my hands.
What then did I do wrong, father
and why me?
You're the one who named me Yusif!
They pushed me down the well
and then they blamed the wolf.
Oh, father! The wolf is more merciful
than my brothers.
Did I wrong anyone
when I told about my dream?
Of eleven planets, I dreamt,
and of the sun and the moon
all kneeling before me.


A video of the poem being recited by Mahmoud Darwish with English subtitles. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vNZpG7ox294

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Boycott for Peace!
http://boycott4peace.blogspot.com/
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