From the Austin DSA Newsletter, July 2017
People across the country are letting us know they want to be trained to be trainers to reverse runaway inequality. The map helps us focus energy setting up training sessions. Join RunawayInequality.org and let us know where you are and if you want to be a trainer!
The Continental US.
The Pacific States and Philipines
The NY Times’s David Leonhardt borrows a chart from Thomas Piketty and his crew that shows how income gains have been distributed since World War II. Read his story at the New York Times.
Across the country, educators are finding ways to spread the word about the damage runaway inequality is doing to our country. Check out the stories below from New York and Texas and some upcoming events in California and North Carolina.
- Staten Island, NY
- Austin, TX
- Oakland, CA: Train-the-trainer, Sept. 10
- Wilmington, NC: “What Happened to the American Dream?” Sept. 19-20
- Learn more about being a runaway inequality trainer.
Staten Island, NY
June 23, 2017
“We use the runaway inequality workshop as a recruitment tool in the community. So far we have educated 75 people, organized a panel discussion as a follow up, and used the runaway inequality “roadshow” and at the local festival to find new participants for the next class.
“At the La Isla Bonita community festival, we set up a timeline where festival goers could post different social movements in U.S. history. We also posted several of the graphs from the workbook and asked people to reflect on them. People loved the activity and it opened conversations around the graphs. Our table was a hotspot of activity at the festival!”
Communications Workers of America Local 1102
Sustainable Staten Island
At the La Isla Bonita community festival on Staten Island, festivalgoers added social movements in U.S. history to a timeline and reflected on charts showing the depth and causes of runaway inequality.
July 8, 2017
Activists representing Democratic Socialists of America (DSA), Texas State Employees Union, Our Revolution, 350 Austin, and the Travis County Green Party came to a day-long Reversing Runaway Inequality workshop. They dug deep into the causes of runaway inequality and the effects that financial strip-mining has on our lives.
One of the workshop activities is to reflect on value statements that we often hear (like “family values” and “free trade”) and offer statements to describe the world we want to live in. Here are some that they came up with:
- Care for every family
- An economy for all
- FWNW – Fund Workers, Not War
- Vote unto others as you would have them vote unto you
- Ain’t no such thing as a “free” market
About half of the participants plan to partner up and lead their own workshops.
Communications Workers of America
in Austin dug
deep into the
Upcoming in Oakland, CA
Sept. 10, 2017
The RunawayInequality.org educational network runs full-day workshops called Reversing Runaway Inequality. You’re invited to attend a version of the workshop that will also include discussion of the Small Group Activity Method the workshop uses.
Sliding scale registration fee: $20-$60 to cover materials and lunch.
The curriculum is designed for a full-day workshop for 20-25 people, though the material can be adapted for different size groups and shorter amounts of time.
Upcoming in Wilmington, NC
Sept. 19 & 20, 2017
“What Happened to the American Dream?”
Les Leopold will discuss Runaway Inequality: An Activist’s Guide to Economic Justice and what we might do to address runaway inequality.
Tuesday, Sept. 19 @ 7pm
ILA Union Hall
1305 South 5th Ave.
Wednesday, Sept. 20 @ 5:30pm
DeLoach Hall, Room 114
5148 Randall Dr.
The focus will be on using the Small Group Activity Method of training trainers. For information how you can participate click here.
Or to purchase a sliding-scale ticket click here.
Runaway inequality comes at a steep price. The money that enriches the few is extracted from all that we hold dear: our public life, our incomes, our health, our environment, and the education of children. What would the world look like if we were able to reverse this? How is your vision different from the world we live in today?
Make a map or drawing of what your community could be like in a world without runaway inequality and send a photo of it to email@example.com . Even better, get together with a few friends and imagine that world together.
Jane LaTour spent some time visiting activists on Staten Island, the most conservative of New York City’s five boroughs, and finds a progressive culture among the union organizers and peace advocates there. She visited a Runaway Inequality forum on June 22nd, and reports about what she learned.
“On June 22nd, Sustainable Staten Island held a public forum on economic inequality, with expert speakers from a range of community organizations. “Over 50 Staten Islanders from diverse backgrounds filled the room to discuss Runaway Inequality. Whereas Les Leopold wrote the book, CWA Local 1102 is putting it into action. There is a political renaissance happening and the epicenter is Staten Island, New York,” said Lawton. We had an opportunity to talk to many of those in the room, and to listen to the remarks of the panelists.”
A Daily Show writer in the NY Times describes her upbringing in a union home.