In the World
Yesterday, the Panama Papers, 2.6 terabytes of details of secret bank accounts of some of the wealthiest in the world, was released Sunday. Among the revelations is that the prime minister of Iceland kept a sizable secret bank account. The Iceland government could fall as a result, and with polls showing the Iceland Pirate Party as the most popular party there, the Pirate Party, with its focus on transparency and democracy, is likely to form the next government.
Here at Home
The Massachusetts state government and Boston will be giving General Electric a windfall of $250 million in tax breaks and government spending to entice GE to move its headquarters here. Why are we doing this while our schools, MBTA, and housing are underfunded and when we are cutting health care spending for those who need it?
There is a demonstration at 60 State St. starting at 3:30pm today and ending at 5:30pm. If you are in Boston, please come down and join us and all of the many sponsors of this event.
Democracy Needs You!
The Iceland Pirates can take advantage of revelations such as the Panama Papers due to their election laws. In Massachusetts, candidates have to get on the ballot months before election day on November 8th. State Representatives and State Senate candidates have until May 3rd to get 150 or 300 signatures respectively from valid voters in their districts. Candidates for US House of Representatives have until August 2nd to gather 2000 signatures.
Aaron James is running in the 27th Middlesex State Rep. district that First Officer Noelani Kamelamela ran for in 2014. We started gathering signatures for him last week. 60% of State Rep. candidates run unopposed in Massachusetts. The percentage for US House Rep. incumbents is much higher. Aaron is continuing the work that Noelani started and is taking a step to change that for 2016.
Will the Panama Papers make a connection between GE and its attempts to dodge taxes? We don’t know, but if that information comes out, there is little way it will affect the election if Pirates aren’t on the ballot.
So if you want to help move Massachusetts towards more democracy and transparency, running as a Pirate candidate is a great way to do it. Fill out our Supporter form, and check “I’m interested in: running for office”; we’ll get back to you quickly about becoming a candidate.