A relatively new Facebook page has been created to support a Presidential/Vice Presidential ticket of Congresswoman McKinney for Prez and Cindy Sheehan for Veep. Is this a real effort? The answer is below the fold… Continue Reading
5 April 2011
President Obama promised “change” to the people who voted for him. He told them to hope again and that change would come. But President Obama’s change is really more of the same. Therefore, his elixir that was sold to the world was nothing more than snake oil. The most damage, of course, is being done to those whose dreams were intricately woven into his words, not realizing that words are not policy. In a most deadly treachery, those who believed in our President the most are the ones who are now suffering and dying the most.
Some people, to this day, remain tricked by the salve of words for the wounds inflicted by our President. Others have begun to sink into despair while some search for answers. But our President is adept at giving us, in the words of the late, great Fred Hampton, Chicago’s other son, “answers that don’t answer, explanations that don’t explain, and conclusions that don’t conclude.” It is to those searching for answers that I refer to my previous writings compiled on the websites below and to the writings of Bruce Dixon and Glen Ford and the entire BlackAgendaReport.com team and of Wayne Madsen whose writings can be found at WayneMadsenReport.com.
In Rosa Clemente’s and my 2008 Green Party “Power to the People” Presidential campaign, I tried to warn the attentive public of what was to come under an Obama Administration: even I could not imagine that it would get this bad.
I knew that dissent would be intolerable under an Obama Administration, enforced both from the Black political consensus and from the Democratic Party wingnuts–quashing dissent even with all of the attendant special interest burdens that come with any aspect of the Democratic Party.
I knew that the Muslim world was going to be in for a shockingly rude awakening, but even I could not conceive of the carnage this President could bring to that part of the world–either by a policy that encourages Muslims to kill other Muslims, or by the dropping of bombs and the use of depleted uranium on Muslim communities. But not only that, we are seeing the murder of whole countries and the communities and cultures that gave rise to them. The President’s policies are dismantling and dismembering Pakistan and Afghanistan as we watch. The U.S. Embassy in Iraq announced plans to employ a total of 16,000 people, doubling its staff, within the next two years. The only antidote to these policies is unity and I hope that the residents of these countries are able to unite and resist in a much more effective way than have “antiwar” “liberal” communities inside the United States. Of course, some individuals stand out and are leading the resistance now and I can only hope that their voices are heard and multiplied among the masses, both here and around the world.
I do believe that Henry Kissinger was onto something when he marveled at the tremendous good will that this President has around the world and I do believe that Henry Kissinger, among others, sought to use that good will for their own purposes. After all, when you buy a President, like a slave, he becomes yours. It is clear now, that the people of the United States did not buy this President and so they do not own him. There are clear winners from the policies currently being pursued, but they are not the people.
Speaking of Henry Kissinger, let me just say this about him and his minions: When I was in the Congress, I received a phone call from Alassane Ouattara from aboard Henry Kissinger’s yacht. I had received many such calls from people wanting to benefit from my good reputation within the human rights and peace community in the United States and they wanted me to sell their particular potion of iniquity to people inside the United States and to the world. Usually, these people were the kind of people accustomed to buying the consciences of public persons, so my “no” resounded rather sharply to them, and I earned yet another set of crosshairs on my forehead, I guess.
Alassane Ouattara and his Zionist wife, Dominique, were seeking my assistance–or maybe my silence–in his effort to become President of Ivory Coast. I applaud Laurent Gbagbo in his efforts to stave off imperialism in Ivory Coast, one of the few African countries that has not one iota of a relationship with the U.S. military. However, Democracy Now, FOX, CNN, AP, Reuters, and all the rest didn’t tell you that when they ran their many stories about Ivory Coast. While the world will celebrate “democracy” arriving in Ivory Coast once Gbagbo is gone, the exact opposite will actually be the case. Handing Ivory Coast over to Henry Kissinger and his ilk is the policy of the Obama Administration. I guess, President Obama is proving his worth: perhaps no one could have done it better.
But it doesn’t stop there. Look at what President Obama’s policies are in Haiti! When the devastating earthquake struck there, only the fifth in the entire history of that country, President Obama sent in the drones when the people needed food, shelter, and medical relief! How is that any different from George W. Bush and Michael Chertoff who sent men with guns into New Orleans, military and mercenaries, after Hurricane Katrina when the people really needed food? Now, because of President Obama’s policies and his complete prostration before the Vicars of the Imperium–that is, the Clinton Family–who call the shots on the future of the Haitian people, Haiti can only see more struggle against domination in its future. Hillary Clinton went to Haiti to snatch self-determination from the Haitian people in the victory of Jude Celestin and to instead select a musician buffoon who once mooned his audience in a concert for Haiti’s Presidency, all with the smack of legitimacy granted when one can successfully threaten the Election Commission with revocation of visas to the U.S. and control the Organization of American States and the United Nations that has troops of occupation there.
Had George H.W. or W. Bush or John McCain or any Republican done any of this there would be enough hot air to float the Hindenburg! The streets all across the United States would be aflitter! There would be animation in the Congress enough to make John Boehner cry! Instead, however, the very people who wield official power and who could stop this madness because they supposedly represent the interests of the people, silence themselves and let this happen. Unity, again is the antidote–the sand that can be thrown by a few into the gears of the machine.
But, there is also pernicious collateral damage from our President’s policies right here in the United States in the African-American community that brought itself up from slavery and U.S.-styled apartheid. President Obama has hastened the collapse of Black wealth in this country even as he feeds the beast of the bankers. And, although our President can be counted on to roundly condemn Black men on Father’s Day, it seems that is the only treatment for which our President actively searches out Black people–for criticism and condemnation. The so-called Black Farmer “settlement” provides money for everyone but the initial Black Farmers who stood up and filed a lawsuit against the U.S. Department of Agriculture, but who now stand to lose 1.5 million acres under President Obama’s watch. Under this President, Black people can be condemned, but not repaired.
As a result, sadly, Blacks are slipping back more and more into economic and cultural servitude and political irrelevancy. And Michelle Alexander’s clarion call in her book entitled “The New Jim Crow,” reveals the true state of Black America. Just one tidbit from Ms. Alexander: “More African American men are in prison or jail, on probation or parole than were enslaved in 1850, before the Civil War began.” According to a recent Economic Policy Institute report, Black family wealth has fallen to just $2,000 while that of White families rests at $94,600.
But, I have spouted these statistics for the past 20 years as they got worse and worse. I have done everything that I know to do to try and warn the next victims of what these policies all mean for them. And at a time when Japan is spewing radioactive material across the planet, our President goes to India and Chile hawking more nuclear potions while limiting the companies’ liability when there is a disaster! The winners in all of our President’s policies take their rewards to the bank. Woe is unto the rest of us.
Finally, I have said too many times to recall the number, that politics is not a beauty contest, nor is it a popularity contest. Politics is about power and policy. And unless we cast our votes for the candidates who represent our best policy options, then we are practicing the politics of self-abnegation. Nowhere is that more clear than in the case of the Black community where even thoughtful critique of our President is unwelcome. I want so much to change the world, but feel like Harriet Tubman must have felt when she approached slaves who did not want to be free because they didn’t even know that they were enslaved!
WASHINGTON, DC — The Green Party’s online livestream show ‘GreenStream Wednesday’ will feature Cynthia McKinney, the party’s 2008 presidential nominee, and journalist Jared Ball on Wednesday evening, March 2, 10:00 pm ET, 7:00 pm PT.
Along with discussion between the two guests, the one-hour show will present Green news, interviews, video clips, and viewer participation.
Viewers can tune in at http://www.livestream.com/greenpartyus or go to http://www.livestream.com and enter the channel name: greenpartyus. The channel is also accessible at the Green Party’s video page (http://www.gp.org/video/index.php).
The first show, which aired on February 23, featured interviews with Wisconsin Green Party leaders on the protests in their state against Gov. Scott Walker’s budget plan that would cut benefits and abolish collective bargaining. The guests were Tony Palmeri, elected Green member of the Oshkosh City Council; Amy Mondloch, Executive Director of the Grassroots Leadership College in Madison (http://www.grassrootsleadershipcollege.org) and a long-time Green Party activist; and AJ Segneri, co-chair of the Wisconsin Green Party (http://www.wisconsingreenparty.org). They were interviewed by Starlene Rankin and Craig Seeman of the Green Party’s Media Committee. The show, with video clips of the Wisconsin protests, continued for a half hour beyond its scheduled one-hour time.
To participate in the ongoing discussion in the chat window during the show, viewers can log in to Livestream or can join the chat as a nonmember guest. Viewers can register for a free Livestream account by clicking on ‘Sign Up’ at the top of the page, but membership is not necessary to watch the broadcast. The shows are repeated in rotation after the initial broadcast and are archived on the Green Party Livestream Channel web site.
Guest bios for March 2:
Cynthia McKinney served six terms in the US House of Representatives as a Democrat before joining the Green Party in 2007 and becoming the Green Party’s 2008 candidate for President. Since 2008, Ms. McKinney has been a champion of Palestinian Rights and a supporter of the Free Gaza movement. In 2009, she was one of 21 activists on a Free Gaza relief ship that was rammed and taken captive by the Israeli Navy. She was held by the Israelis for 5 days. In 2010, Ms. McKinney participated in portions of the Bike4Peace event from San Francisco to Washington, DC.
Jared Ball is assistant professor of communication studies at Morgan State University in Baltimore, Maryland, where his research interests include the interaction between colonialism, mass media theory and history, and the development of alternative/underground journalism and cultural expression as mechanisms of social movements and political organization. He is founder and producer of ‘FreeMix Radio: The Original Mixtape Radio Show’ and former editor for the first academic journal dedicated to hip-hop, ‘The Global Journal of Hip-Hop Culture’. He briefly sought the Green Party nomination for President in 2008 before pulling out and endorsing Cynthia McKinney. Mr. Ball is host of ‘Midday Jazz: Jazz & Justice’ on WPFW (89.3 FM) every Monday, 1 to 3 pm ET.
2010 was a roller coaster year for the Green Party. Mid-term elections proved voter dissatisfaction with the Democrats in power, but the media-darling Tea Party Movement drove voters to reactionary candidates, not helping Greens at the polls. International Greens saw successes in the United Kingdom, Australia, and other places, while US Greens were moved by the plight of the Palestinians in Gaza under siege by Israeli forces. The 2010 Annual National Meeting was held in Detroit, Michigan in conjunction with the US Social Forum, putting Greens side by side their brothers and sisters in the struggle for social justice in America. In the fall, Greens had many exciting candidates running for office including Jill Stein, LeAlan Jones, Laura Wells, Rich Whitney, Tom Clements, Colia Clark, Julia Willebrand, Farheen Hakeem, Howie Hawkins, Cecile Lawrence, Ben Manski, Fred Horsch, and so many other inspiring Greens.
The following Top 10 Green Party stories are taken from a combination of hits on Green Party Watch and other criteria to build a summary of the year. May 2011 be prosperous for Greens around the World. Time is running out.
Top 10 Green Party Stories of 2010
May 7, 2010 – Caroline Lucas becomes first Green Member of Parliament in United Kingdom – Caroline Lucas, leader of the Green Party of England and Wales, won a hotly-contested race in Brighton Pavilion to become the Greens’ first-ever member of parliament. The Guardian summed it up best: “It’s a massive breakthrough, not only because she’s a brilliant, charismatic, humane politican who will enrich parliamentary life, but also because it proves it can be done, even under our antiquated political system.”
May 31, 2010 Green Party and Cynthia McKinney Condemn Freedom Flotilla Massacre – In May of this year the Israeli Navy attacked a flotilla of ships run by the Free Gaza movement carrying humanitarian supplies to the besieged residents of the Gaza Strip. 19 human rights activists were killed in the attack and 50 more wounded. The Green Party, led by 2008 Presidential Candidate Cynthia McKinney, have been vocal and active critics of Israel’s war on the people of Gaza.
“The attacks on the aid boats is a criminal act of piracy and a deliberate provocation,” said Dr. Justine McCabe, co-chair of the Green Party’s International Committee. ““We demand immediate action from the US, including emergency orders from President Obama to cut off all aid to Israel. The policies of the US regarding Israel and Palestine up to now have convinced Israel that it can act with impunity in committing massacres and massive human violations against Palestinian civilians.”
2008 Presidential Candidate Cynthia McKinney, who was taken prisoner by the Israelis last year on another attack on a Free Gaza ship, said: “I am outraged at Israel’s latest criminal act. I mourn with my fellow Free Gaza travelers, the lives that have been lost by Israel’s needless, senseless act against unarmed humanitarian activists.”
June 8, 2010 – California Voters Pass Prop 14, Top Two Primary Initiative By a 53% – 46% margin, California voters approved adopting a “top two primary” election reform, a system whereby all candidates appear on a single ballot in the primary but only the top two, regardless of political party, advance to the General Election.
California Gubernatorial candidate Laura Wells had this to say: “Prop 14 pretends to be “open primary,” but more accurately should be called “top two,” or party-killer! Only two candidates would be left in November, when Prop 14 would exclude all the independent, alternative political parties like the Green Party, Peace and Freedom, and Libertarian. Prop 14 would favor only Democrats and Republicans that are incumbents or highly funded.”
June 24-27, 2010 – Green Party Annual National Meeting in Detroit in Conjunction with US Social Forum The Green Party’s Annual National Meeting was held in Detroit, Michigan in conjunction with the US Social Forum. The Green Party sponsored several Social Forum workshops and registration was cross-listed between the two events. Many Green Party candidates were in attendance and available to the media. A number of candidate presentations were taped by Green Party Watch and can be found through this link.
June 2010 – Republicans pay to get Green Party on Ballot in Texas, Democrats Livid If there is one thing that drives Democrats crazier than a Green “spoiling” an election, it is Greens getting on the ballot at all despite overwhelming odds. In Texas, a Republican consultant in Arizona arranged for a non-profit in Missouri to pay for Free & Equal to come up with 92,000 signatures to get the Green Party of Texas on the ballot up and down the ticket. Democrats were livid, immediately suing and issuing injunctions against ballot access. The case went to the Texas supreme court before culminating with the Green Party candidates being allowed to remain on the ballot.
The ultimate result of this was that Ed Lindsay, Green Party of Texas candidate for State Comptroller won over 5% of the vote, ensuring that the Green Party of Texas will have state wide ballot access through the 2012 elections.
August 21, 2010 – Historic Election Results for Australian Greens The Australian Green Party performed very well in the federal elections in Australia, with Adam Bandt winning a seat outright in Melbourne with over 36% of the first-choice vote, and the Greens winning about 12% of the vote in the lower house, giving them a share of control over the balance of power in the Australian Parliament.
September 21, 2010 – Green Party Senate candidate Natasha Pettigrew hit and killed on bicycle Natasha Pettigrew, Senate candidate for the Green Party in Maryland, was riding in the bike lane on a highway early on a Sunday morning by an inattentive driver of a SUV. The driver apparently didn’t realize she had hit anyone until she arrived home. Pettigrew died from her injuries the next day. This (long after the fact) article really captures the influence this story had on people.
November 3, 2010 – Green Party Gains Ballot Access in Texas and New York Election returns resulted in the Green Party gaining ballot access through at least 2012 in two of the most populous states, New York and Texas, however the Green Party lost ballot access in Illinois and Wisconsin. In New York Greens gain ballot status through 2014 thanks to Howie Hawkins earning over 50,000 votes for governor. In Texas Greens gain ballot status through 2012 thanks to Ed Lindsay earning over 5% for comptroller.
November 5, 2010 – Green Party Candidates for US Senate Net Half Million Votes The eleven Green Party candidates on the ballot this year for US Senate netted a combined half million votes. The 510,000 votes is the highest combined total for Green Party Senate candidates since 2000, when Medea Benjamin won 326,000 votes for US Senate in California and Vance Hansen picked up over 100,000 in Arizona. The 2010 results were clearly led by Tom Clements in South Carolina, whose 118,000 votes gave him 9.37% of the total. Clements had the most votes and the highest percent of the vote of all Green Party US Senate candidates in 2010. LeAlan Jones was the second big finisher with 116,000 votes, 3.19% of the total.
2010 – Green Party Elects 37 Greens to Office in 2010 342 Greens ran for office in 2010, over 300 of them were on the ballot in November. 37 Greens were elected, a win rate of 10.8%. All but 2 of the wins were in non-partisan races.
On the November ballot, Greens had strong showings for State Legislative races, but fell short in races for Governor and US House of Representatives. One Green, Ben Chipman, was elected to the Maine State Assembly but was listed as an Independent due to a technicality.
Bruce Dixon of Black Agenda Report has written a blog post on Open Left entitled “Moving the conversation forward – our plan in Georgia”, which describes a plan for building the Georgia Green Party from the ground up. See also the discussion in the comments section.
|Georgia Republicans are real Republicans. I live in Newt Gingrich’s old district, where Dems don’t even run for state rep and senator, let alone Congress.
Our white Democrats are Dixiecrats. Think John Barrow from Savannah. Think Roy Barnes, a past governor and current candidate for that same office who nearly doubled the number of prison beds in only four years, and whose biggest brag last time he ran (and lost to a mope who promised to and did bring the Confederate flag back to the state capital) was his championing a two strikes law in the state senate under his Dixiecrat predecessor Zell Miller.
Our elected black Democrats aren’t much better, most of them.
|bruce.dixon :: Moving the conversation forward — our plan in Georgia Continue Reading|
Speaking at Brooklyn Commons:
From Cynthia McKinney, July 27, 2010 on the Bike4Peace ride across the US (http://b4p.bbnow.org)….
Bike 4 Peace is still in need of hosts for potlucks and warm showers, and also sag vehicles by state because I’m the one who’s sagging behind the rest of the bikers–yesterday, by one hour and a half!!! We’re available for radio interviews–especially me–because I’m definitely a better talker!!!
Malik Rahim, who is riding up solo from New Orleans to meet up with us on September 22 in Washington, DC needs hosts on the route outlined below. He is especially interested right now in Mississippi and Alabama hosts. Malik can be contacted at 504-252-3743.
Here’s my update by day. Very brief updates will come as telephone and internet allow: Continue Reading
WASHINGTON, DC — Green Party leaders and candidates are urging Congress to pass House Resolution 301 to remove US forces from Pakistan. The privileged resolution was introduced by Reps. Dennis Kucinich (D-Oh.) and Ron Paul (R-Tex.), who said that President Obama’s plans for an increase of US troops in Pakistan violate the 1973 War Powers Authorization (http://www.commondreams.org/newswire/2010/07/23-7).
The Green Party supports an end to the US war on Afghanistan, which the Obama Administration has escalated by deploying more troops and ordering air attacks across the border in Pakistan. The party opposes the current war escalation supplemental bill and all proposals to increase war funding. Continue Reading
Talk about 2012 and who might be a good Green Party standard bearer as the Presidential Nominee really began in earnest about one month before the 2008 election concluded. So talking about it now, in the summer of 2010, isn’t really out of line or out of place, and perhaps is overdue.
The conversation has already begun on the GPUS National Committee delegate email list, with names tossed around such as Barbara Ehrenreich, Margaret Flowers, Van Jones, and of course Cynthia McKinney. What I find interesting is the variety in “goals” that Greens expect from a Presidential candidate, and the variety of “types” of candidates that people think might accomplish those goals,
So what are the goals of running a national Green Party candidate for President? Winning the White House seems to rank low thanks to the reality of the duopoly in US Politics. So what, then? Five Percent might be brought up, because if a presidential candidate gets five percent of the national vote that political party is eligible for millions of dollars in support of the next presidential nominating convention, but more than that, the percent received by the candidate can impact ballot access in a number of states, Texas, Iowa, Illinois and Wisconsin just to name a few.
Another major goal often brought up is “party building”. A national candidate for President can travel the land raising money and recruiting volunteers for local chapters everywhere. Nader did it. Cobb did it. And McKinney did it as well, bringing new people into the Green Party fold, some of whom are now candidates for federal office or have taken leadership positions within the party.
So who might be a good Green Party candidate for President? Lets explore the topic by “type” of candidate.
The “Name” candidate
This group of candidates would include those who have a well known name for themselves in the public eye – the bigger the better. It is all about name recognition, but perhaps at a smaller scale. Lets face it, Nader was a “name candidate”, Cobb was not. McKinney was. Van Jones is close, but I would class him more as an “issue candidate”. Celebrities fall in this category, such as: Michael Moore, Amy Goodman, Susan Sarandon perhaps, Ben Affleck (or is it Matt Damon?), and any other famous person who wants to risk their career by taking the “Green Cause” to the political scene. My first choice for a “celebrity candidate” at this point would be Woody Harrelson, tied into the “Issue Candidate” category below for his Cannabis Activism.
The Issue Candidate
This category would include those candidates who are big activists on a narrower issue. Margaret Flowers is a universal heath care advocate. Woody Harrelson is a “legalize marijuana” advocate. Cindy Sheehan is an anti-war activist. Jesse Johnson is an anti-coal mining activist. Cynthia McKinney in a way is a social justice candidate, with emphasis on Palestinian Liberation. Would an “issue candidate” help the party meet its goals? My personal favorite potential “issue candidate” is Kathy Kelly, an anti-war / peace advocate who is a wonderful speaker, I would love to see her at the top of our ballot.
There is a case made for a Presidential candidate who is a political insider, an organizer within the party or a candidate for federal or state office who has done well. Kent Mesplay falls in this category, as does kat swift, and certainly David Cobb. What about Rich Whitney in Illinois? Jill Stein? Laura Wells? What about a party organizer like Mike Feinstein, Farheen Hakim, or Claudia Ellquist? Would a Green without national name recognition have any impact? Would a Green who had a broader package than a single issue candidate improve our returns? I think if the Green Party is going to consider an insider candidate, they would do well to tag someone who has run in high profile races and done well, who can speak well, raise money, and campaign. Rich Whitney, who got 360,000 votes for 10% in 2006 would be a leading candidate, and I would also bring attention to Jill Stein, who got over 3% of the vote running for Governor of Massachusetts in 2002, Medea Benjamin, who brought in over 300,000 votes running for US Senate in California in 2000, and Rebekah Kennedy, whose 200,000 votes in Arkansas in 2008 for US Senate brought her 20% of the vote.
Who will the Green Party recruit? Who will the Green Party attract? Will McKinney run again? Will there be another Draft Nader campaign? And if a Green is elected President in 2012, will the world still end as per the Mayan Calendar?
WASHINGTON, DC — Green Party leaders expressed sadness and sympathy for the family of former Georgia State Rep. James Edward “Billy” McKinney, father of Cynthia McKinney, after his passing on Thursday, July 15, following a long illness. He was 83.
Billy McKinney served as a state legislator in Georgia for 30 years. Cynthia McKinney, the Green Party’s 2008 presidential nominee and a former six-term Georgia member of the US House of Representatives, also served in the Georgia legislature. They became the first father-daughter duo in the Georgia House when Ms. McKinney was first elected in 1992. Continue Reading