Turn on the water. Make Wall Street pay.

Thousands of registered nurses, community, labor, environmental and community activists marched in Detroit today in a resounding protests against the shutoff of water to tens of thousands of city residents – an action the marchers called a wanton violation of human rights that creates a public health emergency.

I first met Tim Carpenter in January of last year, at Progressive Central in Washington, D.C. The third such event in Progressive Democrats of America (PDA)’s 10-year history, the day-long round of panel discussions united left-wing members of Congress such as John Conyers (D-Mich.) and Raúl Grijalva (D-Ariz.) with activists from the labor, anti-war and environmental movements.

From Maine to California, nurses, students, HIV/AIDS and community activists, took to the streets today calling on Congress to fulfill the quest of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s fight for economic justice by enacting a tax on Wall Street speculation to fund efforts to reverse inequality.

 "The Inclusive Prosperity Act would make Dr. King proud," said Rep. Keith Ellison at a kick off press conference in Washington against the backdrop of the U.S. Capitol.  

Robin Hood’s hearty supporters stood in below-freezing weather outside of Rep. Danny Davis’ office in Chicago, Ill. today to remind him of the pledge he made and later abandoned.

In 2012, Rep. Davis signed the Robin Hood Tax campaign’s “What Side Are You On?” pledge and cosponsored the Robin Hood Tax bill, H.R. 1579. In 2013, he withdrew that support, citing pressure from the Chicago Mercantile Exchange and Board of Trade.

The list of endorsers backing the Robin Hood Tax Campaign expands every day, as the logic and fairness – and necessity -- of taxing Wall Street speculation, and blunting austerity, resonates louder and louder. The Robin Hood sales tax on Wall Street trading in stocks, bonds, derivatives and currencies would raise up to $350 billion each year and Robin Hood wants to see that money meet the most compelling needs in U.S. communities -- with support for good jobs, health care and education, the environment and infrastructure.

HR-6411: To Tax Wall Street; Real Revenue for Critical National, International Needs

New York – The U.S. Robin Hood Tax Campaign today applauded the introduction in Congress of a bill that would impose a tax on Wall Street speculation.  Introduced by Rep. Keith Ellison, HR 6411, the Inclusive Prosperity Act,  would raise up to $350 billion in annual revenues that would be used to breathe new life into Main Street communities across America, as well as international health, sustainable prosperity and environmental programs.   

A tax on financial transactions – the Robin Hood Tax – adds up in so many fundamental ways:  raising meaningful revenue, hundreds of billions annually, at a time when communities across the country remain in deep crisis; a way to put a break on rampant speculation, underscored in the aftermath of JPMorgan Chase’s high-stakes bet last spring—now estimated to have cost that financial institution $5.8 billion; and controls over spikes in prices for key food and fuel stuffs, an area of speculative activity (“speculative bubbles”) that has significantly g

Attendance reflected the concern – worldwide – and when protesters spilled out of the Washington Convention Center at Mt. Vernon Square at noon yesterday the mood was one of strong focus and commitment.   It was mid-week through the 19th International AIDS Conference and marchers hit the streets sounding this theme:  We Can End AIDS.

I feel like I know the two most incredible secrets in the world. They are so juicy that they have to be shared. The first?  We can end the AIDS pandemic. Seriously.  I’m not kidding. I’m not using hyperbole. This isn’t a plea to get you to use a condom or come to an AIDS Walk.  Last summer, scientists published the results of a definitive U.S. government funded study proving that if people have access to treatment, they are 96% less likely to transmit the virus.  Economists took this information and did some modeling.

Q. What do you get if you mix rallies in fifteen cities, Mark Ruffalo, green masks on statues, a lot of tweets and some headlines?

A. A fantastic launch to what we hope (know) is the start of the brilliant Robin Hood Tax movement.

The day kicked off with some mischievous merry folk creeping around New York long before the sun was up to mask some of the cities best known statues. By the time sun was up everyone from Ghandi to Andy Warhol was wearing the icon green mask and hat.