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OCCUPY Your City

From Brave New Films

Non-Electoral Politics

Lately, the phrase "public servants" has struck me as ironic, not because government officials fail to serve the public, but because much of the public serves them.  The public is the servants.  Activist groups and individuals devote themselves to bettering the fortunes of political parties or politicians, at the expense of pressuring government officials to represent public demands.

Nobody favors eliminating elections, and nobody favors eliminating activism.  But there are those who cannot see how prioritizing money-marinated, gerrymandered, cable-news-controlled, unverifiable elections will reverse the train wreck in progress.  And there are those who cannot see what it would mean to engage in activism that wasn't aimed at promoting electoral victories.

Putin in 2012

  Putin in 2012 - by Stephen Lendman

 

Currently he's United Russia's Prime Minister, serving with President Dmitry Medvedev. 

 

From May 7, 2000 - May 7, 2008, he was Russia's second President, succeeding Boris Yeltsin, a man known for destructive "shock therapy" that created shocking levels of poverty and social inequality.

 

Progressives Vow to Challenge Obama in Democratic Primaries

Progressive leaders led by Ralph Nader and Cornel West unveiled a proposal today to challenge President Obama in the Democratic Party’s presidential primaries in 2012.

 The proposal, which has been endorsed by over 45 distinguished leaders, seeks to have a slate of six candidates run against President Obama, each representing a field in which Obama has never clearly staked a progressive claim or where he has drifted toward the corporatist right.

“Without debates by challengers inside the Democratic Party’s presidential primaries, the liberal/majoritarian agenda will be muted and ignored,” said Ralph Nader.

“The one-man Democratic primaries will be dull, repetitive, and draining of both voter enthusiasm and real bright lines between the two parties that excite voters,” Nader said.

Some Resonance Please!

By Charles M. Young



Will iPhone be the new Diebold?

 

Is Smartphone Technology the Future of US Elections?

ScienceDaily (Sep. 13, 2011) — With more and more Americans upgrading to smartphones, and as smartphone capabilities continue to improve, even the U.S. government is considering innovative ways to harness this advancing technology. Human factors/ergonomics researchers have evaluated the potential benefits of using smartphones to enable online voting in future U.S. elections and will present their findings at the upcoming HFES 55th Annual Meeting in Las Vegas, Nevada.

How to Launch a Presidential Challenge to Obama

Here's a way to make this work within a Democratic Primary or in the general election of 2012.

Nobody can just announce that they are running in the general election as a candidate of the people, of peace, of justice, of decency, because all the corporate media would want to talk about was Spoilerdom.

And running instead in only non-swing-states, or asking voters in swing states to swap their votes with people in non-swing-states, would lead to only that same conversation about Spoilers and the mechanics of theatrical electioneering.

The Month of Normality

Here's a simple proposal. I'm sure it's too much to ask for, but I'm asking anyway. Let's set aside a single month, say the month of April, following each federal election, and for that single month behave like the citizens and elected officials of a normal representative republic.

Jesse Jackson Sr Gets It Right

In 1960 Martin Luther King supported Kennedy instead of Nixon
to prevent America from going backwards.

 

Then he marched in the streets of Birmingham to pass the Civil Rights Act 

to move the nation ahead.

 

In 1964 Martin Luther King supported Johnson instead of Goldwater  

to prevent America from going backwards.

 

Then he marched in Selma to pass the Voting Rights Act  

to move the nation ahead.

 

For Dr. King there was no conflict between voting strategically  

to prevent the triumph of reaction and leading a nonviolent mass movement

to pressure a president to achieve profound social change.

 

When we in the movement struggled for social justice we helped weak presidents become stronger.

 

When we in the movement struggled for social justice we helped good presidents become great.

 

Rev. Jessie Jackson Jr. at the evening reception of the joint AFL-CIO/Martin Luther King Center conference on Jobs, Justice and the American Dream.

 

To view a webcast of the entire conference, click here:  

 

Sincerely,

Ed Kilgore
Managing Editor
The Democratic Strategist
www.thedemocraticstrategist.org

Vets: Clean Fuel Standard Good

Vets: Clean Fuel Standard Good for National Security
Standard would reduce dangerous US oil dependence, save Americans billions at the pump


 

Rick Perry: Extremist White America's Evangelical Hope

  Rick Perry: Extremist White America's Evangelical Hope - by Stephen Lendman

 

Consider the unpalatable 2012 options, a choice between:

 

-- a so far unopposed lawless/crime boss/militarist/pro-war/anti-populist president; and

 

Cutting Through Hype, Hypocrisy In Vote Fraud Claims

Michael ConnellRecent events show why election theft deserves much more scrutiny than it receives from either government officials or news reporters. Most dramatically, a federal judge has released the 2008 testimony of GOP IT guru Michael Connell, right. The Ohio resident died in a mysterious plane crash that year after anonymous warnings he would be killed if he testified about his work with Karl Rove and others helping the Bush-Cheney ticket win in 2000 and 2004.

Other recent news includes claims by both major parties of irregularities in last week’s Wisconsin state senate recall elections. In a pattern familiar nationally, Democrats suspect vote hiding by a partisan GOP elections supervisor and Republicans allege illegal inducements by Democrats to encourage voting. Elsewhere, Fox News played up a report about how a county judge in Nevada called the community-organizing group ACORN “reprehensible” on Aug. 10 and ordered a $5,000 fine for the defunct group because it paid a bonus to workers who registered voters.

"Corporations are people", But From Where

60min had a replay of an earlier report on corporate tax havens last night.

Which now raises even more questions especially related to this now infamous remark and backed up by many of like minded ideology:

 

"Corporations are people, my friend."

Followed quickly by this:

 

"Of course they are. Everything corporations earn ultimately goes to people."

Which people and where, are these corporate profits trickled down too?

While they renounce their corporate citizenship to dodge the corporate U.S. tax rates they stay on the trading boards of Wall Street as U.S. to be invested in.

Mike Gravel Will Primary Obama If We Raise a Million Dollars

DailyCaller

“Somebody should challenge Obama, there’s no question about it. He is what he is, and it’s not what we want,” former Alaska Sen. Mike Gravel said in an interview with The Daily Caller. “I’d be happy to do it, but it takes money. Without enough money to be heard, you come off as somewhat foolish.”

Gravel said he will challenge Obama if there is sufficient financial backing.

“If [supporters] would put up $1 million, I probably would run. And that would at least fund enough activity to get a message out,” Gravel said.


Let's do it.

California Democratic Party May Dump Its Progressive Caucus for Proposing a Primary Challenge to Obama

On July 30th the Progressive Caucus of the California Democratic Party passed a resolution proposing that a primary challenge be offered to Obama next year.  The Progressive Caucus's certification expired at the same time, and while other caucuses were routinely recertified that day by the state party, the Progressive Caucus (I'm told by its chair, Karen Bernal) would not have been, had a vote been held.  So the recertification was tabled, and the Progressive Caucus is in limbo.  It no longer exists, but it may yet continue existing.

I asked Karen Bernal about the resolution and the response to it on Sunday.  Here's that audio: mp3.

Here's the resolution:

RESOLUTION in SUPPORT of a POSSIBLE 2012 DEMOCRATIC PRESIDENTIAL PRIMARY CHALLENGE
Passed July 30, 2011
Anaheim, CA


WHEREAS, the Progressive Caucus of the California Democratic Party recognizes the challenge presented by President Obama’s negotiating away Democratic Party principles to extremist Republicans, we are challenged by President Obama in the following ways:


•    His unilateral closed-door budget offer to slash Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid, which endangers the New Deal and War on Poverty safety nets.
•    His determination to escalate U.S. militarism through illegal secret CIA drone attacks and unauthorized wars.
•    His willingness to extend the Bush tax cuts for millionaires and bail out big banks without ending the foreclosure crisis that displaces American working families.
•    His insistence on pushing a health insurance bill which enriches private insurance companies while ignoring growing support for single-payer health care or robust public options.
•    His continuance of President Bush’s assault on civil liberties with an extension of the repressive Patriot Act.
•    His failure to restore due process, including the protection of whistleblowers and habeas corpus.
•    His numerous failures to adhere to international law.
•    The continuing practice of nationwide FBI raids of anti-war progressive protestors.
•    His decision to increase the arrests and deportations of undocumented workers.
•    His facilitation of the privatizing of the public sphere, which includes education and housing, among others.
•    His disregard of his promises to the Labor movement.
•    His failure to adequately protect the environment and adequately address climate change.


WHEREAS, the Progressive Caucus of the California Democratic Party recognizes the historical significance of the Eugene McCarthy/Robert F. Kennedy anti-war challenge to President Lyndon Johnson. The challenge followed President Johnson’s decision to escalate U.S. military involvement in Vietnam, betraying his campaign promise to end a war that polarized America. Similarly, we recognize the danger and betrayal that the current “Grand Bargain” represents to the legacy of Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s signature gift to all Americans, Social Security and the New Deal, a point of pride for all Democrats.


WHEREAS, the Progressive Caucus of the California Democratic Party is committed to the understanding that an interest in a 2012 Democratic presidential primary challenge will not interfere with President Obama’s ability to govern and not limit his ability to do so in ways that include invoking Constitutional options, we recognize that this will, in fact, raise debate on important issues without risking the ability to mobilize and energize the base of the Democratic Party to elect a triumphant leader to counter the far-right agenda.


THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, to make our views heard, the Progressive Caucus of the California Democratic Party will begin the process of contacting other Democratic organizations, Democratic Party members and public organizations that share our views on the issues and which seek to alter the course of history by exploring other steps to effect a necessary change, including a possible primary challenge to President Obama.


PS: You can help primary Obama here: http://stophoping.org

 

This Can't Be Good for Verifiable Voting in Ohio

Politico:

"Obama’s high command has even studied President Bush’s 2004 takedown of Sen. John F. Kerry, a senior campaign adviser told POLITICO, for clues on how a president with middling approval ratings can defeat a challenger."

What's Hampering Jobless Veterans

With veterans' unemployment rising, President Barack Obama is scheduled on Friday in a visit Washington's Navy Yard to announce initiatives to prepare vets for civilian jobs.

Those boomers born during WWII and in the few years directly after may or may not remember their childhood years, I do. What your parents, coming out of the military, no higher education needed to fight our wars, or moms coming out of the factories, quickly taught the jobs needed to work in by those who for many reasons couldn't serve in the military. You grew up into that working world that had quickly grown a prosperous middle class, and with usually small but regular raises and improved benefits and safety you were prospering better then your parents.

Progressive Caucus of California Democratic Party Criticizes Obama Administration Policies, Advances Primary Challenge Possibility

ANAHEIM, Ca. – The Progressive Caucus of the California Democratic Party, criticizing what it calls President Obama's "negotiating away Democratic Party principles to extremist Republicans," has approved a resolution suggesting it may explore steps to "effect necessary change, including a possible primary challenge to President Obama."

The resolution, overwhelmingly adopted at a meeting of the Progressive Caucus of the California Democratic Party July 30, fell short of stating President Obama would not be that candidate. Caucus leadership said it hopes President Obama would rework his priorities to respond to the needs of working class Americans in order to get progressive support in 2012.

The resolution – coming on the heels of heavy criticism of the Obama Administration by the Congressional Progressive and  Black caucuses over the "debt ceiling legislation" – said progressives are "challenged" by President Obama's recent decisions.

Progressive Caucus of California Democratic Party Encourages Democratic Party Primary Challenge to President Obama

On Saturday, July 30th, 2011, an estimated 75 members of the Progressive Caucus of the California Democratic Party (CDP) passed a resolution in support of a Democratic Party Presidential Primary challenge to President Barack Obama. Gathering in Anaheim during an Executive Board meeting of the CDP, the group overwhelmingly endorsed the resolution following a discussion on the importance of not only challenging the far-right agenda of unmitigated corporate greed but also the current administration’s willingness to slash 650-billion dollars from Social Security and Medicare. Below is the resolution:

RESOLUTION IN SUPPORT OF A PRESIDENTIAL PRIMARY CHALLENGE

Whereas, the Progressive Caucus of the California Democratic Party, recognizes the challenge presented by President Obama’s negotiating away Democratic Party principles to extremist Republicans by:

DeJa-Vu: Long Past the Wars

A Country that is willing to 'Sacrifice', Not the U.S.!

As we've seen since Korea and especially from our long War of Choice, Vietnam and since! To easy to ignore the Veterans of and the few really concerned citizens, PTS, Agent Orange/Defoliant poisoning, Suicides, Gulf War Syndrome and so much more of the not so distant past and the now rising concerns of the present. Way to easy to lay blame on the Agency especially by congressional representatives, calling that conservatism, and the people, then to fund on the front end, knowing the long term results of our invasions and occupations will have costs similar to the ever growing defense costs, thus saving money long term than to Demand the Same Sacrifice demanded of the soldier, sailor and marine and their families, now over a decade of No Sacrifice and certainly No Demand For!

 

Stop Hoping! Start Changing!

"Zeus did not want man to throw his life away, no matter how much the other evils might torment him, but rather to go on letting himself be tormented anew. To that end, he gives man hope. In truth, it is the most evil of evils because it prolongs man's torment." -Friedrich Nietzsche

Had enough hope yet?

Had enough waiting, praying, expecting, wishing you actually believed it but pretending you just might, anticipating the let-down, taking in the impact of disappointment, betrayal, humiliation, and powerlessness, and finally, time after time, smashing your forehead into a concrete wall that had always been standing there as big as day?

Had enough of a steadily growing military, more wars than ever before, assassination as an instrument of national policy, the stripping away of civil liberties, and nothing to show for it but a prize that Henry Kissinger got too?

Senate Committee on Veterans' Affairs: 27 July 2011

WAR TAX NOW, and stop laying blame on the agencies YOU are supposed to fund!
Hearing: Examining the Lifetime Costs of Supporting the Newest Generation of Veterans
Committee on Veterans’ Affairs United States Senate 112th Congress, First Session Hearing Schedule Wednesday, July 27, 2011 10:00 a.m.

 

May be live streamed from site

 

WITNESS LIST

Crystal Nicely, Caregiver and Spouse of OEF veteran

Paul Rieckhoff, Executive Director, Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America

Heidi Golding, Principal Analyst, National Security Division, Congressional Budget Office

James Hosek, PhD, Senior Economist, RAND Corporation

Who Should Challenge Obama in 2012?

The majority of U.S. citizens favor protecting Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid; taxing the rich; cutting military spending; and protecting the environment. We don't have a candidate . . . yet. Potential candidates supported on this site will be notified and encouraged to run.

Dear Chris and Markos

Dear Chris and Markos,

It has come to our attention that the mere discussion of progressive third party activism constitutes a terminal offense on Daily Kos and will subject any users broaching the topic to the termination of their accounts. Please see here for an instance of this policy being implemented by Kos moderators.

"We strongly believe that discussion of third and independent parties when exercised strategically is a crucial component in advancing our shared objective of progressive change. That it can be used to this end is evident in the fact that your current organizing drive revolves around supporting Senator Bernie Sanders' efforts to prevent cuts in Social Security and Medicare benefits."

Senator Sanders, as you know, belongs to a third party: he is an Independent Socialist. Had your ban been in effect in Vermont, Senator Sanders career would have been terminated before it began.

We therefore respectfully request that you seriously reconsider reversing your policy banning discussion of third party activism. We believe this would constitute a small but significant improvement in the discourse which will be necessary to effect progressive change.

Sincerely,

David Swanson

David Lindorff

Margaret Flowers

Kevin Zeese

Matt Gonzalez

Scott McClarty

Ted Rall

"Shared Sacrifice"??

"Shared Sacrifice"? WAR TAX NOW!!

 

Hearing: Examining the Lifetime Costs of Supporting the Newest Generation of Veterans

 

Committee on Veterans’ Affairs United States Senate 112th Congress, First Session Hearing Schedule Wednesday, July 27, 2011 10:00 a.m.

Veterans and the Veterans Administration have been short changed for decades now, costing much more in fighting to catch up then if funded properly at the beginning and into, and throughout, our wars of choice, instead it's easier for the people, their reps and some veterans to lay blame on the agency. Magnetic ribbons, wordy patriotic meme's, flag waving and historic costumes, lapel flag pins and purple heart bandages is Not Sacrificing after Demanding the Soldiers and their Families do!!

 

To Hell with the Democrats!: Time to for Any Real Progressives in Congress to Bolt the Party and Start a New One

By Dave Lindorff

Jeff Greenwald has just written that President Obama, by playing a leading role in pushing for cuts in Social Security benefits as part of the whole kabuki-theater drama over the debt ceiling, and the alleged crisis of America’s national debt, has cut out the “soul” of the Democratic Party.

Tepublicans to Military Veterans: Shove It!!

WAR TAX NOW, and call it that
Some of this I posted last night, under a different subject heading, I'm adding more to that with a change in the VVA press release link.

Add in vitter trying to block the VA budget in the Senate {below} and the tepubs are continuing their decades long obstruction of Veterans Issues while laying blame constantly on the VA and their supporters love that, including veterans among them!!

Since the 110th congress and with Gen. Shinseki in they've been trying to play catchup with What Wasn't Done Nor Mentioned in the 108th and 9th while they rubber stamped two more wars of choice and with Still No Demand from the Country as to their own Sacrifice now over a decade, added to the previous decades!!

I'm sure though they still have a supply of those 'purple heart bandages' they so enjoyed, pointed directly at us in-country Navy personal, while sending those troops into these two conflicts!!

Balance the Budget on the Backs of Billionaires

By David Swanson, RootsAction.org

The wealthiest nation on earth is not actually obliged to starve our senior citizens.  We don't need a military 670% more expensive than the next largest one on earth.  We don't need to fund health insurance corporations instead of healthcare.  And we don't need tax breaks for billionaires.  In fact, we don't need billionaires.  That's the message RootsAction is taking to Congress.

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