#PanamaPapers: How CREDO is fighting back against secretive “shell” corporations

The secret world of tax evasion by the world’s super-rich elite was recently blown wide open with an explosive media leak being called the “Panama Papers.”

More than 11 million documents from the secretive Panamanian law firm Mossack Fonseca were leaked to an international journalist consortium. More than 140 world leaders, public officials, and major celebrities have been implicated already, with more names expected soon. The documents, spanning almost 30 years, expose how the world’s elite use fake corporations called “shell companies” to launder money, evade sanctions, hide wealth, and dodge taxes.

With two recent campaigns, CREDO activists are fighting back against tax evasion and criminal activity by secretive anonymous “shell” corporations. Read More

Earth Week Climate Challenge #2: Green Your Community

Green your community. Think globally, act locally. It’s more than a bumper sticker. It’s a framework for a sustainable economy focused on community strength, support and resilience. You’ve no doubt heard of the sharing economy. You may already be a participant. Well, just go from there. Beyond ride sharing and vacation rentals, there are many ways to share that strengthen your community.

Have you ever found yourself wanting to take on a project at home but not wanting to buy that expensive tool you need? Chances are, a neighbor has it. And maybe you have a book that another neighbor wants to read. And maybe you would love to trade babysitting time with some other neighbors who you know and trust. Read More

5 ways to keep your data usage low

Most of us now use our smartphones to do stuff online. Check our email, read the news, watch a video. And whenever we do, we’re using data—sometimes a lot of it. How much? Here are a few common activities and the estimated amount of data each uses. Keep in mind that 1024 bytes = 1KB, 1024KB = 1MB and 1024MB = 1GB.

  • Refreshing your Facebook feed: 50KB
  • Sending 10-20 emails a day (no attachments): 20MB per month
  • Streaming music or podcasts for 2 hours a day: 3.5GB per month
  • Watching 60 minutes of standard-definition video a day: 8GB per month

If you’re watching the amount of data you use each month, here are 5 ways to keep data usage in check:

1. Use WiFi
This is the oldest—and best—trick in the book for minimizing data usage. Whenever you’re able to access a secure WiFi network, connect to it. Any downloads you make, videos you watch, social media feeds you refresh, etc.—none of it will use data on your monthly mobile plan.

2. If you use Google Maps, download local areas
If you’re like me, you spend most of your time in a few neighborhoods. Take a moment to download Google Maps of your local spots and you’ll have a faster, more data-friendly experience with the popular navigation app. Here’s how: when you’re connected to WiFi, open the Google Maps app, search for the area of your choice, click on its details page, then select download. Learn more from Google’s support instructions. Read More

Earth Week Climate Challenge #1: Green Your Food

Green your food. The food you choose is important. It’s important to your health, obviously. But it’s also important to the health of your family, your community—and your planet. It’s true. Choose your food wisely and you can make a difference for our climate. And if we all work together, we can make a real impact.

A study published in March shows that a global shift to a vegetarian diet would cut food-related greenhouse gas emissions by nearly two-thirds. This clearly demonstrates the huge—and hugely damaging—impact that intensive meat production has on our climate. Of course, no one expects that the entire world will go vegetarian overnight. But if the world simply switched to a mostly vegetarian diet and reduced meat consumption to fit within current health guidelines, that could reduce food-related greenhouse gas emissions by nearly a third. Read More

#DoYourJob hits the front steps of the Supreme Court

Photo Credit: People for the American Way Foundation

This week CREDO activists joined our allies at People for the American Way, MoveOn.org, and other groups at a rally on the front steps of the Supreme Court on to send the simplest message possible to the Obstructionist Club: #DoYourJob.

Heidi Hess, CREDO Action Senior Campaign Manager, made the following statement to press:

“Republican obstructionists are trying to keep the Supreme Court under right-wing control by refusing to do their jobs. It’s a cynical and unprecedented power grab – and the American people aren’t falling for it. President Obama has done his job under the Constitution and it is time for Senate Republicans to do theirs.”

We were also joined by Congressional progressive leaders Rep. Keith Ellison and Rep. Raul Grijalva.

You can tell the Senate Republican obstructionists to do their jobs and hold a vote on President Obama’s nominee right now by signing the petition.

Fighting for a fair Supreme Court confirmation hearing

Every month, CREDO donates almost $200,000 to three amazing progressive nonprofits. We choose the three groups, then members and activists vote to decide how we divide up the money.

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This month, your vote is especially important. President Obama has nominated Merrick Garland to replace Justice Antonin Scalia on the Supreme Court and Senate Republicans are refusing to do their jobs and hold hearings to consider Garland. For progressives who care about money in politics, gun safety, reproductive rights, the environment—almost any issue of consequence—it is critical that we win this fight.

That’s why this month we’re donating nearly $200,000 to the Alliance for Justice, American Constitution Society and People For the America Way Foundation—groups that are leading the charge to overcome Republican obstruction of Garland and are waging a long-term battle to make our federal judiciary more progressive. These groups are working at the grassroots level, in the media and in the halls of Congress and it’s critical that we support them. Read More

CREDO’s March donation recipients say thanks

Each month, CREDO takes a portion of its revenue, which adds up to nearly $200,000, and donates it to three progressive nonprofits. In March, we funded Brennan Center for Justice, Demand Progress and the National LGBTQ Task Force. Over 45,000 CREDO members voted on how to distribute our donations. Here are the voting results:

Graph of CREDO donations March 2016 results

The nonprofits we fund are grateful for CREDO’s support and putting our donations to work! Read More

Victory: New rules to stop Wall Street retirement scams

We just won a big victory on investment reform, and already Republicans are siding with financial interests to try and strip it away.

More than 100,000 CREDO members spoke out for strong new rules protecting Americans’ retirement savings from scam artists, and now the Obama administration has answered.

In a victory for financial reformers, the Department of Labor just unveiled new rules that will force investment advisors to put clients first and save Americans millions of dollars each year. Read More

CREDO exclusive: New Tom Tomorrow comic on the Supreme Court Vacancy

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For progressives who care about money in politics, gun safety, the environment and nearly any other issue of consequence, it is critical that we win the fight against Republican obstruction of President Obama’s Supreme Court nominee. CREDO members have played a huge part in the fight for Merrick Garland’s Supreme Court confirmation hearing. Learn more.

3 progressive-friendly apps for your smartphone

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These days there are phone apps for everyone. Apps for travelers, apps for foodies and apps for exercise enthusiasts. There’s an app called Carrr Matey that guides you back to your parking spot in a pirate voice.

There are also apps that help progressive people support the issues they care about. Here are three of our favorites.

Buycott: Buy this, not that
Download on app store    Android store
Organic produce, a hybrid car, nontoxic cleaning solutions. Sometimes it’s easy choose the more sustainable product when you’re shopping. But in many cases it’s not. Buycott makes it easy to shop progressively. Just use your smartphone camera to scan a product’s barcode, then wait a few seconds while Buycott gathers information on the maker, so you can decide to give the company your money or not. Buycott often suggests alternatives. And the app offers quick ways to join campaigns for causes you believe in, like demanding labels on GMO foods and saving honeybees from pesticides. Read More