Monday, April 17, 2006

Back in the Saddle Again

Well, it's been almost two weeks since I have done anything that can reasonably be called "regular blogging", but since I have little time and less money, I appreciate all of you who have put up with too infrequent an update schedule. The good news is, I hope to be able to get myself on firmer financial ground soon, and if I am successful in that I should have a better attitude and that should translate into a more useful blog.

I'm also thinking about how to do this. I have said on many occasions, and believe firmly, that we Greens must be willing and able to turn on a dime. I don't mean that we should change positions or philosophies as the spirit moves us, but that we must use whatever advantages we do have to make our success more likely. The metaphor I use most often is that we are like a speed boat, and the Corporate Parties are super-tankers. We will never be able to carry water (or oil) for the rich, but we will be better able to make quick course changes. We must use our flexibility.

Since it's inception I have tried to design a blog that will be both worth your time and entertaining too. I am sure I fall shorter on the entertaining side of things because I don't have a skill at entertaining. I am sure others can do a better job of covering the actual news than I do, but so far I haven't felt that this blog was unnecessary or a waste of my time. I like doing it and I believe that it serves a purpose.

I have tried to blog using a set schedule early on. I tried to use one set up, and then another as I tried to "get it right". I guess I'm going to try to do so yet again. Here's my current plan.

I am going to change the set-up so that there are seven days worth of posts up at any time. That means that links to every piece written that week will be on the "front page" at any given time. This will allow all my weekly visitors to see all the info in the "teasers" without having to go into the archives.

I also plan to change my daily blogging. The results of those changes will be apparent beginning with today. Enjoy, and please write me, either by leaving a comment here or by writing me at my Yahoo! address above, and give me the benefit of your input. I really do want this to be a success, and for it to help you to be more successful in your Green organizing.

Nothing behind the "Read more!" link on this one.

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Thursday, April 13, 2006

Just a quick note

It's been a week since I posted here. I apologize for not getting more done, but financial pressures have made it impossible.

The York County (SC) Greens hold our county convention Saturday, and that too has kept me busy.

At a minimum, I'll have a report on the county convention on Saturday, and hopefully I'll have more before then.

Hang in there gang. Replacing a system which has had hundreds of years to establish itself ain't gonna be easy. The person who told you it would be easy was lying to you.

Nothing behind the "Read more!" link on this one.

Back soon.
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Thursday, April 06, 2006

Lying again

I really do need to get to work. Why wasn't I born wealthy? *grin*

While I ponder the question of why God didn't see fit to give me rich parents, the people of the Darfur region of the Sudan are struggling to survive. A number of groups are fighting to end what our President has himself called genocide. I ask you to add your name to the list of people who oppose the killing and displacement going on today, as you read this, by hitting the "Sign a Darfur anti-genocide petition here" link at the top of the page.

OK, now I really am off. More tonight, or tomorrow, as life permits.

Nothing behind the "Read more!" link, so save yourself the time.

Peace y'all!
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I lied

Unfortunately I don't have time to post anything this morning. Well, just this anyway. Off to work early this AM. Sorry gang.
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Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Time to get my fanny to work!

Play nice gang, and I promise tomorrow I'll be more focused on Green Party events and issues.

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New Piece at American Chronicle

It's entitled "What sort of dog are you? In the piece I contend that Democrats and Republicans take advantage of the "Yellow dog" and now "Green Dog" Democrats and Republicans, who depend on their party for guidance and leadership, only to be tossed aside once the politicians have won their seat. You can read it by clicking here.

By the way, Kevin Zeese, Green candidate for US Senate from Maryland has also published a piece, an interview with Norman Birnbaum, an adviser to President Kennedy.
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I figured that I should just put some links up instead of a full piece on each.

One of the globe's gentlest and smartest satirists is dying, and living oh so much. Art Buchwald refuses dialysis treatments, and continues to make me laugh.

A couple in Pasadena, CA are in court, looking to get married. The court may rule that they have a Constitutional right marry. The hopeful couple, both 46, are objecting to a ruling last year that said that the state has a valid interest in procreation, and as such can ban gay marriage.

Who's next? Heteros who don't want kids? This is so stupid. If folks want to marry, let 'em for goodness sakes.

Greens in Wisconsin were a major moving force behind a vote across the state to give the people's verdict on the War on Iraq. The verdict? In 24 of 32 communities the voters called for immediate withdrawal of troops from Iraq.

Take a look at the AP story by Emily Fredrix. It makes absolutely no mention of the Green Party, but does take the time to find a political scientist to poo-poo citizen participation in the process. Guess we should all just give up and let the Poly Sci majors run the world, eh?

If anyone can find Ms. Fredrix e-mail address, I'll gladly post it here, and maybe some of us will write polite letters to her explaining that it's not nice to ignore people's hard work and effort to control their government. Seems fair to me.
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Sorry I'm being lazy this AM, but I have to bring in some more cash, so I'm being as quick as I can be.

Here is an article that almost brought me to tears. Maybe there is hope. Especially if the world can produce more people like Desmond T. Doss Sr. A conscientious objector during WWII, he won the Metal of Honor for delivering seventy five injured soldiers to safety in one attack, and for refusing treatment until another soldier had been treated in another.

I'm an anti-militarist. I believe we must stop cooperating with the war machine. Mr. Doss Sr. did not refuse to cooperate with the war machine, but his service was honorable, and I would think myself fortunate to have met him.

Nothing behind the "Read more!" link...
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In case you didn't have enough to keep you up at night

Remember Timothy McVeigh? Oklahoma City? While we worry, with full justification, about the next terrorist attack from the middle east, it's entirely possible that home grown terrorists had a hand in a very scary incident.

A gaseous diffusion plant which enriches uranium had it's fence cut. A three foot cut. Now the government is suggesting that this is likely some activist group or person trying to test security at the plant. But what if it wasn't some activist group or person, but a terrorist trying to get his or her hands on radiological material for an attack?

Listen folks, from where I sit, radiation kills, and plutonium is forever. I know we're talking uranium here, so maybe not forever, just a few tens of thousands of years.

Global climate change is a reality. The pressure to build more "non-polluting" power plants will only increase in the future, and with more nuclear power plants comes more nuclear proliferation and higher risk of nuclear terrorism.

I have testified before the Nuclear Regulatory Commission in a hearing in Charlotte, NC, that the Charlotte-Douglas International Airport is less than ten miles from four nuclear reactors, and two spent fuel rod assembly retaining pools. FedEX and UPS airplanes sit, loading ramp in the "load" position, protected by only one layer of link fence. A Hummer could easily drive through this fence, which is literally next to the road and less than a hundred feet from an airplane. How long would it take a motivated and trained terrorist to take that plane and fly it into one of these nuclear power plants?

The future is certainly a mixed bag. I wonder often times if the world will look as different in 3006 as 2006 is different from 1006. Will we have survived? Will the living envy the dead? Or, will we find a way to paradise on Earth, eliminating greed and hunger, despotism and hatred, and create the loving, caring society Greens seek?

The article can be found by Clicking here.
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Can it get any worse?

I plan to take some time soon and write about the situation in Darfur. As I wrote a local reporter recently, if The Prez and the Sec of State declares that genocide is happening, then does nothing to stop it, is he not responsible for the deaths? Does that not make him a war criminal? I don't know. How do you stop this violence and bloodshed with non-violence? Is there a way to radically transform the situation there so that the killing ends?

Again, the Associated Press has a piece in my "local" newspaper. I put local in quotes because it's owned by the McClatchy Group out of Sacramento, not what I call really local.

Anyway, hit the link. I'm really struggling with this one. So many lives, and what did we mean when we said "Never again"? Never again will we allow genocide, or we will never again allow genocide of white people??
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Send the Sisters to Jail!

Well, those wacky nuns are at it again! The Associated Press reports in my "local" newspaper that three nuns have returned to the scene of their "crime" of two years ago. In that episode, the three nuns poured their own blood over a nuclear missile silo. Get this, these women of God think that nuclear weapons are illegal. Imagine.

Nothing more behind the "Read more!" link on this one. Just hit the link above to read the article.
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Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Working better

I was able to get up earlier today to get this going, and now I am done. Now all I need do is go earn enough moola to keep the doors open one more day. Off to the salt mines.

Peace y'all.
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Greens in the News

As with the last piece, this is just a series of links to the described online article. Thanks go to Mike Feinstein for his amazing dedication to and work for the Green Party on this and many other topics.

Judy Keen of USA Today reports on Wisconsin Green sponsored anti-war vote

The Boston Globe reports on Michael Berg's campaign for Congress

I have linked to many of the articles Mike maintains for us. Take a look at the entire database by Clicking here!

Nothing behind the "Read more!" link, so don't bother.
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Press Releases

These are all just links to the various described press releases. Nothing behind the "Read more!" link this time.

Feinstein Greenhouse Gas Bill Grossly Inadequate

DC Statehood Greens Oppose Mayor's Bill to Weaken Rent Control

Connecticut Greens to Hold State Convention April 22
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National Committee Vote Results

The voting on a couple of issues before the Green National Committee ended on Sunday, and I am just now reporting on it. How lame is that? :-) Truth be known, I have been busy trying to bring in enough money to keep body and soul together, and trying to offer some minimal level of support to my state's candidates. I don't have a full run down on our nominees, and won't completely until after the nominating convention on April 22nd, but I can't imagine we won't run everyone who has filed. I believe we may have as many as seven candidates again this year, same as two years ago, but with two city-council level seats up too.

Anyway, the results of the voting are as follows:

The Amendment to establish new regulations for Steering Committee member recall was adopted by a vote of 69 in favor, 25 opposed, and 2 abstentions.

The Presidential Campaign Support Committee Missions and Objectives was also passed. The vote was almost unanimous, with 84 votes in favor and 6 abstentions.

In the first vote, on new rules for SC removal, the vote seemed to break largely along GDI and non-GDI lines. I don't think this is a bad thing per-se, but I do wonder if all the non-GDI folks are giving the GDI perspective enough time and attention, and wonder likewise if the GDI folks are listening to the other side with a mind towards understanding.

I'm not asking for compromises from either side, just dialog.

Issues under current consideration include Pose (a) Challenge to (the) Two Party System and apparently another attempt to establish rules for the Delegate Apportionment Committee.

On this last topic, I have placed the entire text of the proposal behind the "Read more!" link because I think everyone needs to read this. If this party is going to have any shot at coming out of the 2008 convention unified behind a candidate and campaign, everyone must buy into and trust the system used to apportion delegates to the convention. Absolutely no attempt to control the outcome of the convention by virtue of manipulations at this early date should be tolerated. Again I must ask, should we not consider demanding that all of our national level leaders belong to and be active in a local Green Party chapter as a minimum requirement? Are we "hiring" activists who can get things done, or people who think and talk a good game, but have no real following or understanding of how organizing actually works?

And to be clear, I am not one of those folks. I am not qualified to lead the USGP, and only hope the people who run are qualified.

Remember, the text of the proposal is behind the "Read more!" link...

Background Purpose:

To insure that the DAC's final recommendation will truly "adhere to the
principle of proportional representation," as provided in its establishing

Present instructions provide that the DAC is instructed "to facilitate the
adoption of a more proportionate system of governance." Such system is to
"adhere to the principle of proportional representation." In recent GPUS-NC
discussion, it has been suggested that "proportional representation" may
mean anything from "One Green One Vote" to "parity between state Green
Parties." This points out the need to define "proportional representation"
before asking the DAC to begin its work. Were the DAC to begin
deliberations with such widely conflicting definitions of its mission, the
chances of arriving at a solution which will satisfy those desiring
"proportional representation" are significantly reduced.

The DAC is constituted and authorized by the GPUS-NC. The DAC must be given
clear, precise instructions by the GPUS-NC. The DAC was neither intended,
nor is it empowered, to define or redefine the terms of its mission; that
responsibility remains with the GPUS-NC. If the DAC is truly mandated to
seek a system of proportional representation, then let us say it in a way
which is clear and unequivocal, and let us say it now, before the DAC begins
its work.

The sponsors of this Clarification proposal want to acknowledge the
difficulty of the task given to the DAC. We encourage the DAC to seek a
system which will place all Greens, whether from a registration state or a
non-registration state, on as even a playing field as possible. We encourage
bylaw suggestions for the appropriate protection of states with small
Green populations and Greens with minority viewpoints within the GPUS.
This instruction is not intended to limit in any way the use of various
criteria and factors in determining a state's Green membership and real, present,
electoral strength.
The test of such factors will be simply do those factors actually and
logically reflect a fair estimation of a state's Green presence?
The DAC is instructed by the GPUS NC to work for proportional
representation, defined as a system of Green Party
representative governance providing parity between Green Party members in
all states.
Cara Campbell 954 525-4522
Gary Hecker 954 525-5903
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Wisconsin Greens Await Results

In a Press Release the Wisconsin Green Party announced plans to make today's vote on Green Party sponsored ballot questions against the War on Iraq only the beginning of their efforts to stop the war.

Does your state have a system of citizen initiative? Can it be used to express the anti-war sentiment of voters? What has Wisconsin done that we too might be able to accomplish?

The full text is behind the "Read more!" link, or the link above.

Wisconsin Green Party awaits "Bring the Troops Home" results and looks forward to referendum campaigns in November

After initiating a statewide petitioning effort to place a "Bring the Troops Home" referendum on the April 4 ballot, members of the Wisconsin Green Party are anxiously awaiting the outcome of Tuesday's vote in the 32 communities where the question will appear on the ballot.

"We are very proud to be a part of this grassroots effort that involved people from diverse political parties, religions, and military backgrounds," said Ruth Weill, Co-chair of the Wisconsin Green Party. "No matter what the results, this effort has been a success in coalition building, and facilitating respectful dialogue about an issue that affects us all."

Petitioners were successful in a sampling of communities that organizers say should give a pretty good snapshot of how voters feel. Some form of the referendum will be on the ballot in larger cities like LaCrosse and Madison, mid-sized communities like Evansville and Shorewood, and smaller towns like Frederic and Casco.

"Our goal was to bring this issue before the people, and to push the issue of the Occupation of Iraq in the November election," said Bob Poeschl, Co-chair of the Wisconsin Green Party. "Congress and the world are watching the results. We have received awesome media coverage, including international coverage, and we have helped to educate the public about the human and economic costs of the War in Iraq. That is all good. Our most important goal, to bring the troops home, is just a bit closer because of the efforts of so many around the state."

Communities around the state are starting to organize for a second wave of "Bring the Troops Home" ballot questions for November.

"We are working with communities all over Wisconsin to follow Milwaukee's lead, and get something on the ballot this fall," said Weill. "The April 4th initiative has been a great start. We look forward to the next phase."

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News Flash: Tom Delay Leaving Congress

Hit the link. It's not Green News per-se, but it is welcome news.

Click here for the full story from the BBC

Nothing behind the "Read more!" link.
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Publishing Elsewhere

In the last post I mentioned that I write elsewhere to reach different, and larger, audiences. When I do this, I always link to my blog, and to state party websites, candidate websites, and other appropriate websites.

A friend, Mark West, has written a column with me about the situation at General Tire in Charlotte. I want this article to have maximum impact.

Where would you suggest submitting this piece for maximum exposure? Does anyone know how you go about submitting articles to CounterPunch or AlterNet or InTheseTimes? Suggestions very welcome. Thanks. As with the last piece, there is nothing behind the "Read more!" link, so no need to bother.
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A Note from Owen

I wrote a brief piece last week about Owen Broadhurst's campaign, and an issue paper he had released as a part of the effort. Owen dropped a note, but because it has already scrolled off the "front page" I am re-publishing it here.

"Owen Broadhurst is an active and engaged Green. With strong opinions and a willingness to be the "outsider", even inside the Greens, Owen is giving this race his all..."

I take this as high praise, and am flattered. I thank you.

Stay tuned to for my next press release - a program for disability rights and access.
The Commonwealth (like quite probably most states) remains, I believe, in clear violation of Olmstead, and I'm going to hammer this message home.

Owen R. Broadhurst

Well Owen, it was meant as praise, but I don't know that anyone else would put much stock in that. :-)

I know it might seem self-serving to post these links and info about campaigns and press releases and position papers, but I post them not so much in hopes that the word will spread far and wide, I try to write elsewhere for that sort of impact, but to give other Green Party activists and candidates examples to look at and adapt or reject outright, as the reader sees fit. There is so much to do, if someone else has a template that's working, I want Greens to know about it.
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