Homelessness Marathon–TONIGHT

Sorry for the late notice;  this is an inspiring annual radio event–well worth listening to (part of it, anyhow).

The 14th Annual Homelessness Marathon radio (and television) broadcast will originate from Kansas City, Missouri this Wednesday, the 23rd, starting at 7 p.m., Eastern time, and ending 14 hours later, at 9 a.m., Eastern time on Thursday.

For those unfamiliar with the broadcast, it is not a “radiothon,” designed to raise money for charity.  It is a consciousness raising broadcast with the aim of fostering a national dialog about the growing poverty in our midst.  The most important thing we do is put homeless people on the air directly, so America can learn who they are and hear about the obstacles they face.  Each hour also has a topic.  Our broadcast schedule may be found here:

There are going to be a couple of new wrinkles to this year’s broadcast. First, the entire broadcast will be televised by Free Speech Television, which has channel 9415 on the Dish Network and channel 348 on DirecTV.  FSTV’s video will also appear on the web at http://www.freespeech.org and on the Marathon’s own website at http://www.homelessnessmarathon.org.

Second, we have had better-than-usual support and cooperation in Kansas City, both from our official sponsors (Hope faith Ministries, COPP Inc. and KKFI) as well as from private individuals.  We are told that we should expect a very large turnout of homeless people.  Corinna West, a former member of the U.S. Olympic Team, even bicycled around KC telling homeless people about the broadcast.  Her press release may be found here: http://corinnawest.com/homelessness-marathon-press-release/

Additionally, as the director of the Marathon, I addressed Kansas City’s official Task Force on Homelessness and, upon request, I prepared a White paper, outlining my recommendations for the city.  Of course, not everyone will agree with my ideas, but I am hoping that my proposals will help to spark discussion. A copy of the White Paper will be found at:

To find out if a radio station in your area is carrying the broadcast
(check local listings for exact times of carriage) look here:

The simple fact is that America has made no significant progress in solving its homelessness crisis.  After 30 years, we still have hundreds of thousands of people on our streets.  Between the Great Recession and the looming budget cuts, we can only expect matters to get worse, but can we really afford to leave so many Americans in desperate circumstances? At the Homelessness Marathon, we believe the answer is no.  Whatever your opinion may be, we hope you will be listening.  Homelessness is a topic that should be discussed and debated, not swept under the rug.


Jeremy Weir Alderson
Director, Homelessness Marathon

Obama’s Budget; Wisconsin

A Boss is like a diaper...
A Boss is like a diaper...

(1) Obama’s Budget: Our trustworthy source for analysis of Obama’s 2012 budget proposal:  The National Priorities Project:

Presidents Budget 2012: Values By The Numbers

Feb. 18, 2011

National Priorities Project offers four detailed analyses of President Obama’s $3.7 trillion budget for Fiscal Year 2012 focused on: expenditures, revenue and deficits, the impact of federal spending on the states and a detailed FY2012 budget overview with a selection of actual and projected revenue and spending charts.

FY2012 Spending in Historical Perspective

What’s inside?

  • Bar Chart – compares actual FY2008 (last year before the recession) to estimated FY2011 and proposed FY2012
  • Federal Budget Pie Chart – shows percentages of spending for Mandatory, Discretionary and interest owed on the national debt

FY2012 Revenues and Deficits in Historical Perspective
What’s inside?

  • Bar Chart – breaks out FY2000 to FY2012 federal revenue and borrowing
  • Pie Chart – details projected FY2012 revenues by source

Note: these features contain embedded information that is accessed by scrolling over each bar or pie slice.

Federal Spending at the State Level
What’s inside?

  • Fully Downloadable Table – presents state-level funding for thirty-three federal programs, including Medicaid, SNAP, CHIP, LIHEAP and public housing
  • View by state or program
  • Compares FY2010 actual spending with FY2011 estimated spending and FY2012 proposed spending
  • Click on the program to find out more about what it funds

The President’s Budget Unveiled
What’s inside?

  • Analysis – a complete overview of President Obama’s proposed budget highlighting salient points and offering key questions to consider
  • Revenue and Spending Charts – a selection of actual and projected revenue and spending information in easy-to-understand chart formats

(2) More on Wisconsin: Things have continued to heat up in Wisconsin;  the message seems to be getting out there that the budget deficit is a pretext, in fact caused by tax breaks for businesses, all an excuse to bust unions. Here are some links about the ongoing push-back against the forces of reaction there:

That’s all I have for now–back to work on the March/April issue.

–Chris Sturr