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The Mainstream Media Proclaims Democrats’ Race Over, but Ignore Undemocratic Primary Process

 

s I predicted, the mainstream media this morning are saying the race is essentially over. But so far, no article I’ve read about yesterday’s New York primary mentions that independents weren’t allowed to vote in it. Yet 42 percent of American voters are now independent, and only 29 percent are registered Democrats (26 percent are registered Republicans), and we can assume a similar distribution in New York. A significant portion of Bernie’s supporters across the nation are independent – for the obvious reason that Bernie’s candidacy takes on the establishment. In addition, most young voters are independent. Independents gave Bernie huge victories in Michigan, Wisconsin, and Washington, for example. And independents obviously will play a large role in any presidential election.

The inclusion of superdelegates and exclusion of independents from many Democratic primaries makes the Democratic Party far less democratic than many assumed. This is the prerogative of the Party, of course. But the mainstream media have a responsibility to let people know all this, for the purpose of assessing the significance of a given primary outcome.

What do you think?

Robert Reich, Robert Reich’s Facebook Page

M.T.A. Spending Plan Restores Funding for 2nd Ave. Subway

The Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s board approved a new version of its long-delayed capital plan on Wednesday, allocating money for system upgrades and expansion projects and restoring funding for the next phase of the Second Avenue subway line.

The $29.5 billion spending plan calls for hundreds of new train cars and buses and a new fare-payment system to replace the MetroCard. With ridership booming on New York City’s aging subway system, the authority also devoted funding for station improvements and updated signal systems to allow more trains to operate.

The agency promised $1 billion for plans to extend the Second Avenue subway to East Harlem — about $500 million more than an earlier proposal set aside. About $2.5 billion would be devoted to the East Side Access project, which would connect the Long Island Rail Road to Grand Central Terminal.

Thomas F. Prendergast, the authority’s chairman, said he was confident that a state review board would approve the revised proposal in the next month. The capital plan will modernize the region’s vast transportation network and make sure that it is safe and reliable, he said.

“This is a monumental win for the people of New York,” Mr. Prendergast said at a board meeting in Lower Manhattan.

But even as board members praised the proposal, they questioned how the state and city would pay their share. Last year, Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo and Mayor Bill de Blasio, both Democrats, reached a funding deal only after months of quarreling over whether the city should pay more.

The state agreed to pay $8.3 billion toward the capital plan over five years, and the city agreed to pay $2.5 billion over the same period. The rest is expected to be paid for by the federal government and other sources.

State and city officials have not specified where most of their funding will come from. Transit advocates have repeatedly criticized Mr. Cuomo, arguing that his commitment amounted to an I.O.U. for the state-run agency.

On Wednesday, Lawrence S. Schwartz, a board member and a former top aide to the governor, urged the board not to question Mr. Cuomo’s promise.

“The money will be there,” Mr. Schwartz said.

The plan had been delayed in recent months by budget negotiations in Albany, with Republicans in the State Senate pushing for extra money for roads and bridges and other legislators opposing cuts for the Second Avenue subway.

The first phase of the Second Avenue project, which will extend the Q line to 96th Street, is scheduled to begin service at the end of the year. The second phase will expand the line to 125th Street.

When the authority cut the project’s funding last year, incensed leaders in East Harlem claimed their community was being neglected. Robert J. Rodriguez, a state assemblyman, said Wednesday he was pleased that some funding was restored and that more was pledged for the next five-year capital plan.

“We’ve gotten to a place where we’re happy that we’ll be able to substantially begin the work on Phase 2,” Mr. Rodriguez, a Democrat, said.

The authority said it would apply for a federal grant program, New Starts, to pay for the additional $500 million for the project.

As part of the budget agreement, the authority’s debt limit was raised to $55 billion from $41 billion, spurring concerns that the agency would take on debt to pay the state’s funding share. Robert E. Foran, the authority’s chief financial officer, told board members on Wednesday that if the agency financed debt on the state’s behalf, the state would pay for the debt service. The move would not prompt a fare increase, he said.

The plan must be approved by the state’s Capital Program Review Board, which includes representatives of the governor, the mayor, the Assembly speaker and the Senate majority leader. The review board’s blessing would end a period of uncertainty at the authority, which first introduced the spending proposal more than a year and a half ago.

Gene Russianoff, the longtime leader of the Straphangers Campaign, a rider advocacy group, complained that the process took too long and that the governor’s funding plan was not concrete enough.

“It’s a good thing for the riding public that it’s moving ahead,” he said, “but they didn’t set any indoor speed records.”

Movie About Justice Thurgood Marshall (in Brideport, Connecticut)

For a movie to be made about Justice Thurgood Marshall, We are researching some small visual details about train service New York to Bridgeport.

Thurgood Marshall was an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States, serving from October 1967 until October 1991. Marshall was the Court’s 96th justice and its first African-American justice.

ThurgoodMarshall

Marshall used the train to commute to try a famous case in Fairfield County Court so there will be a few scenes of him arriving and leaving from Bridgeport.

Featured above is Bridgeport Station in 1940. The current station in Bridgeport was fully completed under ConnDOT and Penn Central in 1975. It replaced a large, ornate structure built in 1905, located to the north of the current station. (postcard from Ken Kinlock collection)

Train service between Bridgeport and New York City circa 1940 was provided by the New York, New Haven & Hartford Railroad (commonly referred to as the New Haven).

NewHavenLogo

NYCityToBridgeportMap of NY City to Bridgeport

GrandCentralTicketBooth1040GettyImages

Grand Central ticket booth. Note: NO SIGN in 1940 (credit: Getty Images)

NewHavenlocomotivetrainElectric locomotive hauling train. Note the 4 track main line. New Haven train leaving Greenwich, CT bound for New Haven. (credit: nycsubway.org)

 

NewHavenMUcarsElectric multiple-unit cars crossing bridge at Cos Cob (credit: nycsubway.org)

SEE A PDF Timetable!

Timetables are essentially the same now as in 1940. Weekday schedules are heavier in the morning on New Haven to New York. Afternoon/evening is heavier on New York to New Haven. So Justice Marshall was a “reverse commuter”!

We need your help! We need a PAPER timetable from 1940’s era AND we need more pictures of the Bridgeport, Connecticut train station. If you can add them into the

Amtrak’s Coast Starlight: America’s most beautiful train ride?

SAN JOSE, Calif. — Back in the 1940s, the Southern Pacific Railroad described its Coast Daylight between Los Angeles and San Francisco as “one of America’s most beautiful train rides.” It still is.

Rebranded by Amtrak, the Coast Starlight leaves Union Station in Los Angeles at 10:10 each morning.  Two hours later near Santa Barbara and lasting for 100 miles the train scoots along bluffs above the Pacific Ocean.  Travelers are treated to stunning views — the sea on one side, the Santa Ynez Mountains on the other.

Traveling on a clear February morning, my recent journey was a wonderful reminder of the appeal of train travel.

My day began early, arriving at the remarkable Art Deco, mission-style Union Station in L.A. at 8 a.m. Amtrak’s Southwest Chief from Chicago had come in thirty minutes early and several of its passengers were already awaiting their connections.

As travelers on long distance Amtrak trains know, much of the enjoyment is the people you meet.

Crusty Bill Mead, a retired Detroit schoolteacher, had just come off the Southwest Chief, three days and two nights from Michigan.  Bill loves trains and loathes airplanes. “Flying is terrible,” he tells me, “the food is bad, the seats too narrow, and people are packed in like sardines.” It isn’t travel, he says, only transportation. “You might as well put yourself in a box and send it Fedex,” he concludes.

The first call for boarding the Starlight comes at 9:30 a.m.  I’m already on track 16 watching the Starlight arrive from the L.A. yard.  I meet Mark Ludwick, the locomotive engineer who will guide the Starlight and its 200 passengers to San Luis Obispo, six hours up the line and half way between L.A. and San Francisco. Mark tells me that on the trip south, whales were jumping in the Santa Barbara Channel.

Exactly on time, a conductor calls “all aboard” and the Starlight departs.

In the Southern Pacific era, the Daylight covered the 471 miles from L.A. to San Francisco in 10 hours.  Today the Starlight, which travels overnight all the way to Seattle, requires ten hours to reach San Jose, from which it proceeds along the east side of San Francisco Bay to Oakland. Then it is on to Sacramento, Klamath Falls, Portland and Seattle where it arrives at 8 o’clock the following evening.

Early on I make my way to the lounge car in the middle of the train.  It is available to first class as well as coach travelers.  I quickly encounter interesting people including a ship ‘s engineer from Scotland, a retired couple from rural Michigan and two Australians heading for the Bay Area.

Alex McIndoe is an affable Scotsman delighted with the opportunity to see America’s backyards from Amtrak trains. He’ll be traveling for several weeks before rejoining his ship in Britain.

Tim and Martha Stutzman from Colon, Mich., have been visiting grandchildren in L.A. and are beginning their journey home.

North of Santa Barbara it’s time for lunch and community seating yields another group of interesting travelers. Jude from Sydney, Australia, is traveling with her son Chris headed for the Pacific Northwest.  Our waiter has a difficult time with their accents, especially requests for tea with hot milk.

My tablemate Elsa Rivera is just back from two weeks in Cuba assisting teenage girls on the intricacies of surfing with modern boards her group brought from California.

Elsa will get off in Salinas near her home in Monterey.

The train glides through Vandenberg Air Force Base, past the launch pads for military missiles and satellites. We reach San Luis Obispo at 3:30 p.m.  From there the train travels inland heading towards Salinas. The scenery remains impressive, brown hills finally green from recent rains.

By the time the Starlight reaches King City it is nearly dark. For several miles we have traversed the rich agricultural land rightly called America’s breadbasket. From the Salinas Valley comes 80% of the country’s lettuce and much of its garlic and artichokes.

The Starlight arrives at San Jose in the Silicon Valley on time at 8:15 p.m. With a handful of others I detrain and watch the Starlight move on into the night.

I have experienced a wonderful ten-hour, 423-mile ride to San Jose for the price of a single coach ticket for seniors, $50.  And those vintage ads were right, this is one of America’s most beautiful train rides.

Economics journalist Barry Wood is based in Washington, D.C.  

This Campaign Was Never About Me

Thank you for reblog

PenneyVanderbilt

hen we started this campaign, I emailed my supporters and said, “This campaign is not about Bernie Sanders. It’s about a grassroots movement of Americans standing up and saying: ‘Enough is enough. This country and our government belong to all of us, not just a handful of billionaires.'”

I believe that now more than ever.

We still have a path to the nomination, and our plan is to win the pledged delegates in this primary. Next week five states vote, and there are A LOT of delegates up for grabs. I am going to keep fighting for every vote, for every delegate, because each is a statement of support for the values we share. That’s why I have to ask:

The truth is that if we stand together, there is no limit to what we can accomplish. We can bring hope to the political process. We can make real change…

View original post 639 more words

This Campaign Was Never About Me

hen we started this campaign, I emailed my supporters and said, “This campaign is not about Bernie Sanders. It’s about a grassroots movement of Americans standing up and saying: ‘Enough is enough. This country and our government belong to all of us, not just a handful of billionaires.'”

I believe that now more than ever.

We still have a path to the nomination, and our plan is to win the pledged delegates in this primary. Next week five states vote, and there are A LOT of delegates up for grabs. I am going to keep fighting for every vote, for every delegate, because each is a statement of support for the values we share. That’s why I have to ask:

The truth is that if we stand together, there is no limit to what we can accomplish. We can bring hope to the political process. We can make real change. People should not underestimate us.

In solidarity,
Bernie Sanders


The first “Sanders for President’ Email, April 30, 2015

From: Bernie Sanders
Date: April 30, 2015
Subject: Are you with me?
Marc –

I am writing to inform you that I will be a candidate for President of the United States. I ask for your support.

For many months I have been traveling from coast to coast across our country, and have had the opportunity to meet with thousands of good, hard-working, and remarkable people. Like you and me, they are deeply concerned about the future of our country.

They wonder why they are working longer hours for lower wages. They worry about whether their kids will be able to afford college or get decent jobs. They fear that they may not have the savings to retire with dignity and security.

The challenges facing our country are enormous.

It’s not just that, for forty years, the middle class has been disappearing. It’s that 99% of all new income is going to the top 1%, and the grotesque level of wealth and income inequality today is worse than at any time since the late 1920s. The people at the top are grabbing all the new wealth and income for themselves, and the rest of America is being squeezed and left behind.

The disastrous decisions of the Supreme Court in the Citizens United case and in other related decisions are undermining the very foundations of American democracy, as billionaires rig the system by using their Super PACs to buy politicians and elections. And the peril of global climate change, with catastrophic consequences, is the central challenge of our times and our planet.

The middle class in America is at a tipping point. It will not last another generation if we don’t boldly change course now.

After a year of travel, discussion and dialogue, I have decided to be a candidate for the Democratic nomination for president. But let’s be clear. This campaign is not about Bernie Sanders. It’s about a grassroots movement of Americans standing up and saying: “Enough is enough. This country and our government belong to all of us, not just a handful of billionaires.”

I run not to oppose any man or woman, but to propose new and far-reaching policies to deal with the crises of our times. And I run because I know we must change course now, or risk losing the future for so many to the interests of so few.

A successful national campaign is a massive undertaking, especially when we will be heavily outspent. It will require the active participation of millions of Americans in every community in our country. In fact, it will require nothing less than a political revolution which combats the demoralization and alienation of so many of our people from the political process.

Let me be very honest. It may be too late to stop the billionaire class from trying to buy the Presidency and Congress. The forces of greed already may be too powerful. But we owe it to our children and grandchildren to try. We owe it to them to make the fight and, through the power of our numbers, turn back this assault on the foundation of our democracy and our future.

We are at a moment of truth. We need to face up to the reality of where we are as a nation, and we need a mass movement of people to fight for change.

I believe America is ready for a new path to the future.

On May 26th I will formally launch our campaign at the City Hall in Burlington, Vermont, where I served as Mayor.

I ask you to join with me in our campaign for President of the United States.

Sincerely,
Senator Bernie Sanders

By Bernie Sanders, Reader Supported News

The Top 8 Skills Wealthy People Have Mastered

Master these skills if you are serious about growing your wealth.

1. Become known for one thing.

Many a creative person will tell you they have many talents, which can be both a blessing and a curse. Excelling at various things can make your head spin as you aim to fit them all into your weekly schedule.

Those who are exceptionally successful will tell you this is the number one key to becoming successful. Focus on and be known for one thing — when you are the expert in one subject and are living and breathing what you do in addition to obtaining exceptional results, clients will travel from near and far to work with you.

The book The One Thing, by Gary Keller, is a great read.

2. Master a mindset.

Incredible things happen when you become aware of your daily thoughts and begin doing the work to change the thoughts and beliefs that no longer serve you.

The best book I’ve read on this subject is Breaking the Habit of Being You’ by Dr Joe Dispenza. The book helps you understand the brain and how it works, and offers tools for changing your thoughts in a simple yet practical way. Here’s a recent article on the topic.

3. Build muscle.

There are multiple ways you can stay fit, from yoga, Xtend barre, swimming, tennis, golf, or running. However, one of the fastest ways to lose weight, get tone ,and stay healthy is to build muscle.

There are plenty of people who are thin but have more fat than muscle. By the time you reach the age of 50, the average person loses up to 10 percent of muscle mass.

Building muscle can improve bone density, reduce the risk of injury, boost
metabolism, help you gain tone and lose weight, improve your quality of sleep, and raise your level of confidence.

4. Turn habits into success rituals.

Your habits can help or distract you from achieving your goals. One of the best ways to effectively change your habits is to implement a set morning and evening routine.

There are thousands of articles and books on the toping, including The Miracle Morning by Hal Elrod.

Success rituals are an effective part of setting a positive tone for the day and maximizing your time and results.

5. Turn on your efficiency machine.

Successful people excel at efficiency. They make decisions quickly and take action to make things happen and get things done.

They utilize their time effectively and realize the importance of energy management.  A lack of energy can severely interrupt a person’s level of activity, which is why it is crucial to identify what energizes you versus what exhausts you.

To heighten your efficiency, automate your business and outsourcing activities that exhaust you (everything from cleaning to accounting).

The key to efficiency is to focus on what you excel at and build a talented team to help you achieve your audacious goals.

6. Inspire those around you.

People are drawn to those who inspire others. Inspirational people have a way of attracting people from all walks of life.

Inspirational people make others feel good about themselves and more importantly, help them to realize their potential.

We all have different families, beliefs, backgrounds, levels of education, and experiences growing up, and that’s why we think differently. Sometimes, despite the many talents people possess, they lack the belief in themselves or the confidence to achieve what they want to in life.

Inspirational people can help boost others confidence and help them to uncover their true purpose in life — a magical and rewarding experience.

7. Appreciate your world.

The power of gratitude and appreciation for what you have is absolutely phenomenal.

When we look at everything we have rather than focus on what we believe is missing, we gain inner peace, happiness, love, and acceptance of what is. We are able to live in the present moment rather than focusing on the future.

8. Meditate from the beaches to the mountaintops.

People around the world are embracing the benefits of meditation. Without a doubt, meditation has changed my life and the lives of countless others.

Regular meditation practice gives one feelings of calm, clarity, and bliss, greater levels of gratitude, and a different view of the world, not to mention the insights that are instrumental to achieving success.

The fact that many people are unclear about their purpose and goals in life and have difficulty making effective decisions is largely due to information overload and the vortex of social media, all of which compete with the everyday activities around relationships, career, and family.

Once you’ve mastered these eight skills, a multitude of benefits await you on a professional and personal level. They are the foundation for a lifetime of success, inner peace, wealth, and gratitude.

 

By Angelina Zimmerman

Contributor, Inc.com