The Party of Open: Open Government, Open Culture, Open Innovation & People First

Monthly archive: January 2017

Resist Hate This Sunday

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Quartermaster Steve and I will join other Pirates at the Boston Protest Against Muslim Ban and Anti-Immigration Orders. It is this Sunday, 1-3pm at Copley Square, 560 Boylston St, Boston. You can find us by looking for the our banner or flags. Trump is denying valid green card holders, immigrants and vetted asylum seekers entry to the US simply because they were born in one of seven countries. People have been denied access to their families simply by trying to return here. Pirates don’t believe in unlimited executive power, especially where it takes away people’s constitutional right to due process. It won’t stop with this action. The US has created a zone anywhere within 100 miles of the border where the US Border Patrol can run roughshod over our rights. We aren’t waiting to see if they start picking up legal immigrants. We will be out there Sunday opposing these actions. Like the pirates of yore, Steve and I believe that freedom of movement is vital and living with other cultures is a virtue. The United States is stronger because it is a county of immigrants. While some have sought to hinder that important quality, whether through the Alien Act of 1798, Trump’s executive order or all the laws in between, that we are a nation of immigrants is our strength. We encourage you to come out and join us this Sunday, 1-3pm, Copley Square, 560 Boylston St, Boston. Just look for the our banner or flags.

published under Civil Liberties, Main Topic | 2 Comments

Counting the days to Chelsea Manning’s freedom

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I learned recently from Susan McLucas, a long-time local activist for Chelsea Manning, that president Obama commuted Chelsea’s sentence. She will be released from prison on May 17th. I think I speak for most, if not all, Pirates that we are very happy and relieved that Chelsea will be free in four months. Thanks to everyone who kept up their support for her and indeed increased it. I personally appreciate the effort of the Chelsea Manning Support Network, Evan Greer, Fight for the Future, Susan McLucas, Veterans for Peace, Pirate Parties and their supporters world-wide, the EFF, ACLU and the millions of people who advocated for her freedom. Chelsea emerging from prison on May 17th will be a glorious day. However, our support for her must not end on that day. She will continue to need our help from those engaging in character assassination whether trolls or politicians. After so many years in prison and solitary confinement, being a free again will come with its own challenges. So savor this day and the days ahead, for this one act relied on the support of so many and yet again proves that we are more powerful together. Solidarity forever.

published under Civil Liberties, Main Topic, Peace & War, Secrecy, Transparency | 2 Comments

Call 202-616-6070 to #FreeChelseaNOW

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With Trump about to become president and Obama considering pardoning Chelsea Manning in his last days as president, please call the Office of the Pardon Attorney at 202-616-6070 and/or the DOJ comments line at 202-353-1555 and urge president Obama to pardon Chelsea. Fight for the Future is sharing a script you can use: “Hi, I saw on the Today Show that President Obama is considering commuting Chelsea Manning’s sentence. I calling to strongly encourage him to do so. Chelsea Manning has suffered enough. She deserves to be released. Thank you.” Please also urge Obama to pardon Edward Snowden.

published under Main Topic, Transparency | Comments Off on Call 202-616-6070 to #FreeChelseaNOW

Tech Meeting This Saturday

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We have a tech meeting this Saturday, the 21st, 2-4pm. It will be in Arlington. Email Quartermaster Steve at for the address if you plan to attend.

published under Main Topic, Organizing | Comments Off on Tech Meeting This Saturday

Share your ideas for PirateCon

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We are planning PirateCon 2017 for April and looked at holidays, school dates and other events to narrow down a few choices: weekends of April 8th or the 29th, basically. The 2017 survey is at and we want your viewpoint. Please submit your survey by the 31st. If you have suggestions for locations or speakers, please drop us a line. Thanks.

published under Main Topic, Organizing, PirateCon | Comments Off on Share your ideas for PirateCon

You stopped BPD’s social media spying plans

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Thanks to everyone who joined us in opposing the the Boston Police Department’s plans to spend $1.4 million to spy on Bostonians’ social media use. The BPD recently announced that they are scrapping those plans. For now. We will keep our eyes on the BPD and other Massachusetts police departments for the next attempt.

published under Main Topic, Privacy | Comments Off on You stopped BPD’s social media spying plans

Mass. lines Hollywood’s pockets with half a billion dollars

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The latest Massachusetts Department of Revenue report on the impact of film tax credits is out. Hollywood took us for $64.5 million in 2014. This is money that went to Hollywood film studios and didn’t go to our schools, roads and other vital services. From 2006 to 2014, Massachusetts has given $548.1 million away in film tax credits. While it has generated some new jobs, it cost Massachusetts $106,099 for each new job created. The average salary for a Massachusetts worker as of May 2015 was $59,010. We aren’t getting much bang for our buck. Massachusetts pays filmmakers for 25% for their production costs, 25% payroll costs, and exempts them from sales taxes.  Provided the project spends more than $50,000 in Massachusetts. Your small up and coming local film maker doesn’t benefit from the tax credits. Hollywood does. Hollywood films use creative accounting and seldom make a profit. They often sell the tax credits at a discount to companies or individuals that have to pay Massachusetts taxes. Companies and individuals used $410.7 million of the tax credits given out between 2006 and 2014 to reduce their taxes. Taxes that could be used to alleviate poverty or provide people with healthcare. The legislature is good at giving our money away to Hollywood, General Electric and many other companies. We opposed a tax break for video game companies in the last legislative session that thankfully died in committee. But it will be back in the new session and we need your help in stopping it and getting Pirates into the legislature who will roll back these expensive and useless tax breaks.  Support us with your time and money. Thanks!  

published under Corporate Welfare, Main Topic | Comments Off on Mass. lines Hollywood’s pockets with half a billion dollars

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