Buying a Slave – The Hidden World of US/Philippines Trafficking

Human trafficking is a hidden industry that brings in $150 billion in illegal profits every year. In the United States, tens of thousands are trafficked annually—the biggest clients being major hotel chains and foreign diplomats.

The Philippines is one of the largest labor exporters in the world. 6,000 Filipinos—mostly women—leave the country every single day to work, because of mass unemployment and poverty. Tricked by placement agencies, thousands end up living as virtual slaves.

Damayan, a New York-based organization led by Filipina domestic workers, is fighting this underground crisis. Abby Martin speaks to several members of the organization about how this exodus of women has devastated a generation of families, and how they are fighting back.

Buying a Slave – The Hidden World of US/Philippines Trafficking

The Philippines has a long and unfortunate history of colonization and being used by the superpowers of the world. The Filipino people are now suffering the consequences of such a challenging legacy- underdevelopment, high unemployment, and constantly worsening poverty. This legacy has led to an unusual phenomenon- a shocking 10% of the Philippine population must leave the country in order to seek employment in hopes of sending money back to their families. An estimated 6,000 people, mostly women, leave the Philippines daily to seek work.

Most of these migrant workers leave the Philippines for the United States, the United Kingdom, Saudi Arabia and Japan where they work in low-wage jobs. In fact, 21 million people are working in forced labor situations worldwide- many of them right under the noses of the average citizen of these countries. Unfortunately, through this process, many of these migrant workers have become victims of human trafficking and have found themselves stuck in a seemingly endless cycle of abuse and neglect.

There are currently 2 million migrant domestic workers working in the United States in industries such as in-home childcare and the hotel service. According to the recent report The Human Trafficking of Domestic Workers in The United States, over 80% of these workers have experienced their pay being withheld or having been paid under minimum wage, 81% live in abusive conditions and 73% work excessive overtime.

Abby Martin interviews Linda Oalican, the executive director of Damayan, the 8,000 member strong New York City based organization created and led by Filipino women domestic workers. Damayan provides much needed legal assistance to migrant workers and human trafficking victims. Abby also speaks with Linda’s daughter, Riya, about the experience of losing her mother at the age of 8, eventually leading to a diagnosis of complex post-traumatic stress disorder years later, as well as other women who have experienced the dark side of migrant employment.

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FOLLOW // @AbbyMartin & @DamayanMigrants

WATCH // YouTube.com/EmpireFiles

The Traumatic Election Of POTUS Donald Trump

Abby and Robbie Martin talk about the surrealness of the 2016 presidential election, how the entire establishment was blindsided, why the DNC failed so abysmally what can be expected from POTUS Donald Trump on a Media Roots Radio election special.

This Media Roots podcast is the product of many long hours of hard work and love. If you want to encourage our voice, please consider supporting us on PatreonListen to all previous episodes of Media Roots Radio on soundcloud or subscribe on itunes.

Abby talks about the failure of the Democratic party to bring out its base and why millions around the country are protesting POTUS Donald Trump on teleSUR English.

 

New Resistance Movement Born out of Trump Presidency

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Follow @FluorescentGrey | @AbbyMartin | @EmpireFiles

Chevron vs. the Amazon – Full Documentary

ChevronThumnbailFullDoc2Abby Martin launches a deep investigation into Chevron Texaco’s intentional spilling of 19 billion gallons of oil and waste in Ecuador’s pristine Amazon rainforest, and the 25-year-long legal battle that followed.

Featuring interviews with victims, expert witnesses and Ecuadorean heads of state, this three-part documentary reveals the full breadth of Chevron’s crimes, blatant corruption in the biggest environmental trial of the century, and outrageous acts against its victims ever since.

 

Chevron vs. the Amazon – Full Documentary

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Short clip from Chevron vs. the Amazon exposing Chevron Texaco’s scandalous history—from supporting Nazis to backing war crimes—all while attacking its victims.

 

Chevron Texaco’s Dirty History

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FOLLOW // @EmpireFiles & @AbbyMartin

WATCH // YouTube.com/EmpireFiles

Abby Martin Violently Arrested at the DNC

abby arrestIn case you were wondering how Philadelphia police compared to those in Cleveland, journalist Abby Martin was willing to share the details of her own arrest at the Democratic National Convention this week. 

“They use this tactic of unlawful mass detainment where they can just sweep people up for hours,” Martin revealed, regarding the police at the DNC. “They do this for sometimes days and then release people with no charges, essentially other than the citation and then just say no arrests were made, our hands are clean, but at the same time, it’s so abusive, what’s happening.”

Martin is a producer for “The Empire Files.” She was arrested on her way to an action and put in custody soon after. Martin described the entire incident as “unreal.” 

“My partner Mike and I, a producer for ‘Empire Files’ were trying to get to this action where there was massive civil disobedience arrests happening,” Martin began. “It was at a public park away from the convention center. We got dropped off in a parking lot, tried to get to action, roads are blocked, the train stations were closed, the police are making it difficult as possible to even get to this action.”

After realizing they were fenced in a parking lot, Martin asked a cop how she could get out.

“He said go to this exit. Completely complying with police orders, we walked toward the exit about five feet from the exit [where] another female police officer came up said, Where’s your credentials, you have to have credentials to be in this area. We’re credentialed journalists, but we weren’t credentialed to be in the DNC,” Martin explained.

That didn’t seem to fly with the police.

“As my partner was telling her this, she grabbed my shirt very aggressively, my dress, ripped it and said ‘arrest her to these other two officers were standing at the entrance, and she said, ‘arrest her for disorderly conduct,'” Martin said. 

Martin was in shock. But that was just the beginning of her ordeal.

 

 

“They twisted my arm extremely hard, my wrists were in excruciating pain, they zip-tied them as close as they possibly could, very very awful experience aggressively, manhandled by three police officers were on me on this fence,” Martin recalled. “I didn’t even see any arrests happening, it was just so shocking, it was so random, I was just stunned and I kept saying ‘we’re credentialed journalists, we were told to come here by another police officer’ and so they carry me to the paddy wagon, totally separate from my producer, I had no idea what’s going on, I just thought ‘I’m spending the night in jail’ and I was just trying to accept my fate and how unreal what was happening was.”

This post was reprinted from Alternet. Watch Abby’s testimony here.

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The official line from the police is that “no one has been arrested” at the Democratic National Convention, but that couldn’t be further from the truth.  Protestors and journalists are being rounded up, handcuffed, booked, and cited all over the city of Philadelphia, and Empire Files host Abby Martin was one of the victims. Ring of Fire’s Farron Cousins was lucky enough to speak with her about her experience.

 

ROF Exclusive: Abby Martin Discusses Her Arrest at the DNC

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I also discuss the story in depth with my brother Robbie on the latest Media Roots Radio.

@AbbyMartin

Hillary Clinton’s Business of Corporate Shilling & War Making

HILLARY CLINTONAs the circus of the 2016 presidential election grinds on, Hillary Clinton has posited herself as the candidate of the people. But not many “candidates of the people” have vacation homes in the Hamptons that cost $200,000 per month, or hang out with the world’s billionaires.

It’s hard to know who she is really–while once being a proponent of Donald Trump type positions, like building a wall at the Mexican border, supporting torture, and opposing same-sex marriage until 2013, today she presents herself as the anti-Trump, anti-Republican candidate.

There’s been a lot of outrage about the impression that the establishment has already anointed her as the Democratic nominee, and has carved out her path to the presidency.

But like in 2008, her guaranteed seat on the throne is being derailed by the unpredictable moods of the masses, and millions of young progressive voters. She continues to play her shape shifting game, morphing her positions to try to capture the support for her opponent, but the real Hillary is still inside.

In fact, every layer of Hillary’s career shows why, far from being a candidate of the people, she’s the top pick by corporations to do the real job of any US president: CEO of the Empire.

Digging deep into Hillary’s connections to Wall Street, Abby Martin reveals how the Clinton’s multi-million-dollar political machine operates. This episode of The Empire Files chronicles the Clinton’s rise to power in the 90s on a right-wing agenda, the Clinton Foundation’s revolving door with Gulf state monarchies, corporations and the world’s biggest financial institutions, and the establishment of the hyper-aggressive “Hillary Doctrine” while Secretary of State.

 

Abby Martin Exposes What Hillary Clinton Really Represents

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FOLLOW // @EmpireFiles & @AbbyMartin

WATCH // YouTube.com/EmpireFiles