“This Plan is Your Plan, This Plan is My Plan” (with a tip o’ the hat to Woodie Guthrie)

This plan is your plan / This plan is my plan

From Mendocino / To Escondido

Healthcare for all is / All we’re asking

This plan was made / For you and me.


Oh, single payer / It is a great plan

It covers health care / Throughout our life span

The status quo? Whoa! / It’s gotta go!  So…

This plan was made for you and me.


Billions we’ll save on /Administration

We’ll lower costs through / Negotiation

With what we save we’ll / Treat every patient

This plan was made / For you and me.


Our politicians / Often resists change

‘Cause contributions/ They like to a-rrange

They dine with corporate chums / And then throw us the crumbs

This plan was made for you and me.


We’ve got the money / Don’t doubt it honey

But so much flows to / Insurance companies

We’re gonna pool our wealth / Invest it in our health

This plan was made / For you and me.


It covers dental / It covers vision

For all our children/ And men and women

No need for co-pays / Farewell deductibles!

This plan was made/ For you and me.


It’s all-inclusive / It’s universal

It really isn’t / So controversial

Now we pay more for less / We’re tired of this mess!

This plan was made / For you and me!


Lyrics:  Health Care for All – Marin

Matier & Ross: Brown buddy Phil Tagami on list of would-be Oakland cop watchdogs

Phil Tagami at the site of a development at the Oakland Army Base in Oakland, California, on Wednesday, Sept. 23, 2015. Photo: Connor Radnovich, The Chronicle

Photo: Connor Radnovich, The Chronicle.  Phil Tagami at the site of a development at the Oakland Army Base in Oakland, California, on Wednesday, Sept. 23, 2015.

July 24, 2017 (sfchronicle.com)

In all, 153 candidates have applied to join Oakland’s new seven-member Police Commission overseeing officer misconduct investigations — including some very familiar names on both sides of the issue.

Those looking to serve on what is likely to be a high-profile panel include:

•Downtown developer and Jerry Brown buddy “Shotgun” Phil Tagami, who tells us that “after a three-year break from public service, I want to help where I can.”

During the 2011 Occupy riots [emphasis added], the onetime Port Commission member made national news for guarding his Rotunda building with a shotgun. More recently he’s been in the headlines for suing Mayor Libby Schaaf and the city over Oakland’s ban on coal going through the $250 million shipping complex he is building near the port.

“Universal Healthcare: Learning from the success of others” by Barry Hermanson

In the June issue of the Bay View, I wrote a column entitled: We can have better health at lower cost. At the time, legislation in Congress (HR 676) had achieved a record number of co-sponsors. Finally, a majority of the Democratic Caucus. Still, far short of a majority to move it forward. No Republican supports HR 676.

In early June, a universal healthcare bill in the California legislature (SB 562), backed by enormous popular support, was heading to its first committee vote. It passed the committee and the full California Senate, but only because it didn’t include any description of funding. By June 30th, the bill had been shelved in the Assembly for the year. It will be taken up again early next year. The major concern by both Democrats and Republicans? How will we pay for it?

Fortunately, a Select Committee on Health Care Delivery Systems and Universal Coverage has been appointed by Speaker Anthony Rendon. I’m glad to see 2 of the 7 committee members are Republicans. We will need more than a few Republican votes if we are ever to achieve universal healthcare. We won’t have the support of every Democrat. http://assembly.ca.gov/healthcaredeliverysystems

I believe the Select Committee should hold many hearings throughout California between now and the time SB 562 is taken up again. It is an opportunity to look at and talk about the many successes in healthcare enjoyed by people in other countries. Taiwan did a similar process in the 1990’s. We could learn from their success in improving healthcare to everyone at a fraction of what we pay. A report could be prepared and submitted to the Assembly highlighting best practices in other countries. The report will help shape the debate on SB 562 next year.

On the Select Committee’s web page there is no mention of upcoming meeting times or agendas. If there is no agenda, we must help the committee establish one. No meeting times or places? Please join me in calling the committee members listed below. The next few months present us with an opportunity to have a robust debate about universal healthcare in California. Well publicized meetings of the Select Committee will do much to educate voters, help us to organize them and strengthen the movement for universal healthcare. Take a few moments, make a few calls and ask for the Select Committee to hold a meeting in your community this fall.

Dr. Joaquin Arambula (Chair) – Dem – Fresno – (559) 445-5532
Jim Wood (Chair) – Dem – North Coast – (707) 576-2526
Autumn Burke – Dem – Inglewood – (310) 412-6400
David Chiu – Dem – San Francisco – (415) 557-3013
Laura Friedman – Dem – Burbank – (818) 558-3043
Tom Lackey – Rep – Palmdale – (661) 267-7636
Marie Waldron – Rep – Escondido – (760) 480-7570

I’m 66. My work on this issue is personal. Average life expectancy in other countries is greater than in the U.S. People enjoy national healthcare that provides better healthcare at a much lower cost. Although I believe the issue of universal healthcare will ultimately be decided at the ballot box in California, the Select Committee can pave the way to better healthcare by holding hearings throughout the state. A report of their findings and recommendations will help the legislature craft a better bill to be put before voters.

Barry Hermanson
Green Party Candidate for Congress
barry@hermansons.com – personal
Barry@Barry4Congress.org – campaign

Mike Zint on homelessness

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First they came for the homeless

Let me see if I have this right. Grandma becomes homeless because she lives on a fixed income and the bills get to be to much. She reaches out for help, and the agencies that are supposed to help cannot. She tries to get into a shelter, but they are full. She ends up in a doorway. Now, instead of a grandmother, she is a drug addicted mentally disabled person that is a threat to all that is good and proper. That is what most who see her in that doorway are thinking.

Do you see the problem?

Let’s replace the ugliness.

–Mike Zint