Whales killed by US Navy sonar–please help!

I’m Lyndia Storey, a MoveOn member in Felton, California, and I started a petition to President Barack Obama, which says:

Click here to join her new campaign.

President Obama: Navy sonar exercises are killing whales again! More whales died this spring during joint exercises involving the U.S. Navy off the coast of Crete. As commander in chief, you have the power to stop this deadly assault on whales WITH THE STROKE OF YOUR PEN. We demand that you immediately sign an executive order directing the Secretary of the Navy to halt sonar trainings in whale habitats around the world!

The Navy said it couldn’t happen again, but now U.S. Navy sonar exercises in Crete have driven whales onto the beaches to die, once again.

In April, whales mass-stranded and died during a U.S. Navy exercise offshore of Crete—the fourth time that sonar trainings have caused catastrophic strandings in these same waters.

Now the autopsy results are in, showing hemorrhaging of internal organs, bleeding from the ears, and other signs of decompression sickness, and the cause of this crime is clear: Navy sonar. OUR Navy.

Enough is enough. The killing must stop. Right now!

Together we can demand that President Obama end the Navy’s war on whales and dolphins!

As commander in chief, the president has direct command over the Army and the Navy. He is constitutionally charged with taking care that the laws are faithfully executed. The killing of innocent whales and dolphins—whether in domestic or foreign waters—is a flagrant violation of the Marine Mammal Protection Act and other federal laws. The Navy is not above the law. These crimes violate every code of human decency and must be stopped.

With the single stroke of his pen, President Obama can order the Secretary of the Navy to cease sonar trainings in whale and dolphin habitats.

Please join me in demanding that the president sign an executive order halting sonar trainings in marine mammal habitats.

The president has direct authority over the National Marine Fisheries Service, the federal agency charged with enforcing our marine mammal protection laws. With one phone call, the president can order the head of Fisheries to require the Navy to conduct Environmental Impact Statements on all its training ranges, both domestic and international.

It’s too late to save the whales who died during the U.S. Navy war games in Crete. But if you and I cry out for justice, we can compel the president to act. Together, we have the power to end the U.S. Navy’s war on whales and dolphins.

If you will join me now and sign this petition to President Obama, I promise to personally deliver a printout of the petition and signatures to the gates of the White House.

Click here to add your name to the petition, and then pass it along to your friends who care about whales and our oceans.

With heartfelt thanks,



Pants On Fire


The Republican Party of Florida is held responsible for letting insurance premiums rise

Florida Republicans want to blame Obamacare for health insurance premium increases. PolitiFact says “Pants on Fire.”

On August 6th, Crist held a Facebook Q&A session where a voter asked him about regulating insurance premiums. He responded: “The fact that we have a law on the books under Rick Scott that says the office of insurance regulation can’t regulate insurance is astounding. We deserve better, you deserve better.” In a direct reply to Crist, the Republican Party of Florida wrote: “Wrong, Charlie. It’s Obamacare that prevents OIR from regulating insurance … a law that you think is great even though premiums will go up by double digits for Floridians.”

But PolitiFact’s Joshua Gillin rates this claim “Pants on Fire”:

The Affordable Care Act doesn’t give the federal government power to regulate insurance rates. It defers to states to regulate their premiums, following a set of criteria for state agencies.

Ironically, the Republican Party of Florida told us it was referring directly to the portion of the Affordable Care Act that says state law is to be followed unless it contradicts the federal health care law, and that’s why Obamacare makes the insurance commissioner obsolete when it comes to setting rates.

Experts we talked to said that doesn’t mean Washington can or wants to do Florida’s job. […]

The Affordable Care Act says if states can regulate premiums, they should. States only have to bring laws up to minimum Obamacare requirements. The federal government only intervenes in states that don’t have effective rate review programs — something Florida can do on its own but won’t, thanks to a 2013 law passed by the Republican-led Legislature. We rate the claim Pants on Fire.

While Florida Republicans may blame Crist and the ACA, they are ultimately responsible for not reigning in premium rates. With Insurance Commissioner Kevin McCarty stripped of his power, Florida premiums will rise 7.4 percent on average and by as much as 23 percent, according to new research from the PricewaterhouseCoopers Health Research Institute.

Many states with effective rate review have not seen the same increases:

  • In Connecticut, Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield tried to raise premiums by 12.5 percent on average. However, the Insurance Department rejected that proposal. Now, Anthem customers will see an average premium decrease of 0.1 percent, according to The Connecticut Mirror.
  • California, which also has an effective rate review program, will only see a weighted average increase of 4.2 percent.
  • Oregon Insurance Division regulators denied a number of proposed increases from insurance companies: Moda Health’s increase was reduced and Kaiser Health Foundation’s increase was reversed to a 4.1 percent cut. Overall, PwC finds that the average Oregonian will see their premiums lowered by 2.5 percent.

This is not the first time conservatives have been on the wrong side of premium increases. In July, a wide swath of Republican elected officials cheered the D.C. Circuit Court’s decision in Halbig v. Burwell. Ted Cruz remarked: “This is a significant victory for the American people and the rule of law, but we must not rest.” If the decision stands, individuals using the federal exchange would see their rates increase by a whopping 322 percent.

BOTTOM LINE: The ACA is working, especially in states where leaders have embraced it.. The uninsured rate continues to drop and people are overwhelmingly satisfied with their health insurance. But conservative governors like Rick Scott are letting their states fall behind by blocking Medicaid expansion and passing a law taking authority away from the state, which is why Scott is on the hot seat in November.

Sign the petition to Ecuador’s president: Save the Amazon from another Big Oil disaster!

“As concerned global citizens, we stand in solidarity with these indigenous nations and urge you to immediately stop plans for new oil drilling in Ecuador’s rainforests!”Add your name:
SierraRise petition box test button PNG


Take Action

Jaime Vargas, an Ecuadorian tribal leader, stood proudly in the howling wind and rain to send us this urgent plea: “Big Oil will stop at nothing to destroy our sacred rainforest home. But with your help we can save it!” [1]

Jaime and his Achuar people are guardians of a spectacular land teeming with one-of-a-kind plants and animals. But Ecuador’s president, Rafael Correa, is racing to sell off the Achuar’s rainforest home and the neighboring Yasuni National Park to greedy international oil companies.[2]

The president is determined to put profit ahead of his own people — even though they’re still suffering from Chevron’s decades-old oil disaster. [3]

More than 1 million people have stood up to save Ecuador’s threatened rainforests [4] — now it’s time for the SierraRise community to join the fight. Let’s stand with Jaime and all Ecuadorians and flood the president’s inbox with 50,000 messages!

Tell Ecuador’s President Rafael Correa: The world is watching — protect the irreplaceable Amazon and halt all plans for oil drilling!

Big Oil can’t be trusted to operate safely in the rainforest. For three decades, Texaco, now part of Chevron, dumped 18 billion gallons of toxic oil waste into the beautiful Ecuadorian Amazon. [5]Thousands of people are still suffering a plague of deadly cancers and devastating birth defects. [6]

This land is not only crucial for wildlife, but also to the seven vibrant indigenous communities that call it home. Jaime says it best: “For us, the indigenous people, the rainforest is life. There we are in touch with everything.” [7]The Amazon can’t afford another deadly oil disaster like Chevron’s.

Last November, hundreds of everyday Ecuadorians protested the proposed oil drilling. President Correa and his government, feeling the pressure, shut down Pachamama, a local nonprofit fighting the oil drilling, stifling his people’s free speech. [8] It’s clear — President Correa is feeling the heat.

Carmen, will you stand with Jaime and his tribe to save the Ecuadorian Amazon from another Big Oil catastrophe?

In it together,

Ashley Allison
SierraRise Senior Campaigner

P.S. Five signatures are even more powerful than one — after you take action, be sure to forward this alert to your friends, family, and colleagues!

Get breastfeeding support and supplies without extra costs

National Women's Law Center
Something to be pumped about!
Check out our easy-to-use guide on the health care law’s breastfeeding benefits and share with the parents in your life today.
Learn More

From diaper duty to sleepless nights, new parents have enough to worry about. But there’s one thing they shouldn’t have to stress over — paying extra costs for breastfeeding support and supplies.

Do you know someone who’s breastfeeding — or will be soon? Send them our easy-to-use guide on the health care law’s new breastfeeding benefit.

Thanks to the new law, breastfeeding supplies and support are now available in many private insurance plans without costs. Our toolkit will make sure parents can take advantage of this benefit.

With our toolkit, you can get the facts on the breastfeeding support, supplies, and counseling in the health care law and the tools you need to help you get this coverage. The toolkit includes details on how to call insurance companies as well as step-by-step instructions on how to file an appeal if an insurance company denies coverage.

We want to make it easy for parents to get the breastfeeding support they need so they can focus on what’s most important: their families.

Share our easy-to-use resource with the parents in your life.

Breastfeeding benefits both parents and children, reducing the risk of breast and ovarian cancer in adults and asthma, obesity, type 2 diabetes, and leukemia in children. Women who breastfeed have also reported psychological benefits such as close bonding with their infants. And with the health care law, breastfeeding support and supplies have never been more affordable.

Thanks for everything you do to ensure women and their families get comprehensive and affordable health care.


Judy Waxman Judy Waxman
Vice President for Health and Reproductive Rights
National Women’s Law Center

P.S. Need extra help using our breastfeeding toolkit? Contact our CoverHer hotline at 1-866-745-5487 or CoverHer@nwlc.org for help.

Washington State Legislators and Boeing need to DUMP ALEC –


a repost from 12/2012 ~~


Given the havoc we all know the American Legislative Exchange Council has created on so many levels effecting our past and present; we all know that we need to make sure companies DUMP ALEC for a better Future. If Coca-Cola, Kraft and Pepsi-Co among others can … so can our State Representatives and Senators.

John Nichols wrote in an April article …  Don’t Just Pressure ALEC’s Sponsors, Name and Shame ALEC Legislators    – a good read

Below is a list of some Washington Legislators with & without associations with ALEC …

Demand that they sever their ties to ALEC Now !

Washington State Representatives  …

— Representative Jan Angel, 26th District, Port Orchard, Republican

Committees: Education, Transportation, Rules and Local Government.

Representative Matt Shea, 4th District, Spokane Valley, Republican   – Front office states they absolutely support ALEC

Committees: Labor & Workforce Development, Judiciary,Transportation and Leadership

Representative Charles R. Ross, 14th District, parts of Yakima County, Republican

Committees: Public Safety and Elections Task Force Member

Representative Barbara Bailey , 10th District, Island County and portions of Skagit and Snohomish counties, including the cities of La Conner, Oak Harbor, and Stanwood, Republican

Committees: Health and Human Services Task Force Member

Representative Joe Schmick, 9th District, Colfax, Republican – Front office states that Rep.Schmick feels the info RE:ALEC is not accurate

Committees: Energy, Environment and Agriculture Task Force Member

Representative Kevin Parker, 6th District, Spokane, Republican

Education Task Force Member

Representative Mike Armstrong, 12th District, Chelan and Wenatchee, Republican

Committees: Commerce, Insurance and Economic Development Task Force and Tax and Fiscal Policy Task Force Member

Representative Bill Hinkle, 13th District, Cle Elum, Republican   — Retiring

Committees: Health Care and Wellness, Agriculture & Natural Resources, Ways and Means

Washington State Senators …  

Washington State Constituents appreciate and respect legislators who have made the choice to DUMP ALEC