Margaret Rossoff 
Member since May 11, 2013


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Recent Comments

Re: “It's Time for Jerry Brown to Break His Silence on Coal

Robert Gammon’s article points out the influence that Jerry Brown could use to stop the threat of coal exports through Oakland. The No Coal in Oakland campaign has been working on several fronts to press Brown to intervene with his associate, Phil Tagami.

However, the article minimizes the power the City Council has to block coal exports through a facility on City-owned property. The Development Agreement clearly sets out the necessary steps to do this: a public hearing, which was held on September 21, and a finding by the City Council of substantial evidence of the danger to community health and safety.

The opponents of coal exports have amply fulfilled the requirement to produce substantial evidence and the city staff is currently reviewing the extensive documentation presented to them. Furthermore, courts defer to local governments’ finding of substantial evidence, even where there might be contradictory evidence. The city has full authority to ban coal based on the evidence submitted.

On February 16, the City Council will consider a possible ordinance to ban coal. Oakland residents who want to block coal can contact their council members in the meanwhile and urge them to vote for a ban. There will be a large turnout on February 16 to reinforce to the council that the extensive scientific evidence against coal is matched by intense community opposition to this toxic commodity.

Posted by Margaret Rossoff on 12/23/2015 at 5:43 PM

Re: “Debtor's Purgatory

This article about the attempts of unrepresented debtors to get legal justice highlights the tragic futility of individual responses to systemic abuses. Strike Debt Bay Area is beginning to organize people to respond collectively to all forms of debt—including medical, student, mortgage and credit card debt as well as auto, pay day and other loans. We are breaking down the shame, fear and isolation associated with debt and developing ways to support each other to negotiate fairer financial arrangements. We are also interested in combating the use of debt against public agencies which face exorbitant interest rates from financiers--money which is ultimately paid by all taxpayers.

The second Bay Area Debtors’ Assembly will be held on Saturday, May 18, from 2 to 5 pm at the Unite Here union hall, 209 Golden Gate Avenue in San Francisco. The Debtors' Assembly is a chance to talk with other people, sharing personal experiences and developing ideas for collective action in response to debt. The assembly will also include an introduction to the Strike Debt movement and a presentation putting personal and municipal debt into the context of modern capitalism. For more information go to strike-debt-bay-area.tumblr.com. We welcome anyone affected by debt or concerned about the impact of debt to attend the assembly or contact us at strike.debt.bay.area@gmail.com.

Another resource is the Debt Resistors’ Operations Manual, which is available on line at strikedebt.org. This publication from New York Strike Debt provides suggestions for individuals to contest debt along with analysis of the economic system promoting debt.

1 like, 1 dislike
Posted by Margaret Rossoff on 05/11/2013 at 9:20 PM

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