Everyone needs to read these two anthologies! – View on Path.
Click share this, on the right, to LIKE this article on Facebook or TWEET it on Twitter!

Everyone needs to read these two anthologies! – View on Path.

Click share this, on the right, to LIKE this article on Facebook or TWEET it on Twitter!

Bill Clinton Speech to the DNC

Photo: Bill Clinton addresses the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte on September 5, 2012.


THE COMEBACK KID

To thunderous applause, in recognition of his lasting popularity and reminiscences of the successes of his presidency, as his 1990s economic turnaround directly affected poor and middle class households, President Bill Clinton was welcomed to the floor of the 2012 Democratic National Convention to officially nominate Barack Obama to a second term in the White House.

You can watch his speech below, which was thousands of words longer than his prepared remarks.




TEXT OF SPEECH AS PREPARED

We’re here to nominate a President, and I’ve got one in mind.

I want to nominate a man whose own life has known its fair share of adversity and uncertainty. A man who ran for President to change the course of an already weak economy and then just six weeks before the election, saw it suffer the biggest collapse since the Great Depression. A man who stopped the slide into depression and put us on the long road to recovery, knowing all the while that no matter how many jobs were created and saved, there were still millions more waiting, trying to feed their children and keep their hopes alive.

I want to nominate a man cool on the outside but burning for America on the inside. A man who believes we can build a new American Dream economy driven by innovation and creativity, education and cooperation. A man who had the good sense to marry Michelle Obama.

I want Barack Obama to be the next President of the United States and I proudly nominate him as the standard bearer of the Democratic Party.

In Tampa, we heard a lot of talk about how the President and the Democrats don’t believe in free enterprise and individual initiative, how we want everyone to be dependent on the government, how bad we are for the economy.

The Republican narrative is that all of us who amount to anything are completely self-made. One of our greatest Democratic Chairmen, Bob Strauss, used to say that every politician wants you to believe he was born in a log cabin he built himself, but it ain’t so.

We Democrats think the country works better with a strong middle class, real opportunities for poor people to work their way into it and a relentless focus on the future, with business and government working together to promote growth and broadly shared prosperity. We think “we’re all in this together” is a better philosophy than “you’re on your own.”

Who’s right? Well since 1961, the Republicans have held the White House 28 years, the Democrats 24. In those 52 years, our economy produced 66 million private sector jobs. What’s the jobs score? Republicans 24 million, Democrats 42 million!

It turns out that advancing equal opportunity and economic empowerment is both morally right and good economics, because discrimination, poverty and ignorance restrict growth, while investments in education, infrastructure and scientific and technological research increase it, creating more good jobs and new wealth for all of us.

Though I often disagree with Republicans, I never learned to hate them the way the far right that now controls their party seems to hate President Obama and the Democrats. After all, President Eisenhower sent federal troops to my home state to integrate Little Rock Central High and built the interstate highway system. And as governor, I worked with President Reagan on welfare reform and with President George H.W. Bush on national education goals. I am grateful to President George W. Bush for PEPFAR, which is saving the lives of millions of people in poor countries and to both Presidents Bush for the work we’ve done together after the South Asia tsunami, Hurricane Katrina and the Haitian earthquake.

Through my foundation, in America and around the world, I work with Democrats, Republicans and Independents who are focused on solving problems and seizing opportunities, not fighting each other.

When times are tough, constant conflict may be good politics but in the real world, cooperation works better. After all, nobody’s right all the time, and a broken clock is right twice a day. All of us are destined to live our lives between those two extremes. Unfortunately, the faction that now dominates the Republican Party doesn’t see it that way. They think government is the enemy, and compromise is weakness.

One of the main reasons America should re-elect President Obama is that he is still committed to cooperation. He appointed Republican Secretaries of Defense, the Army and Transportation. He appointed a Vice President who ran against him in 2008, and trusted him to oversee the successful end of the war in Iraq and the implementation of the recovery act. And Joe Biden did a great job with both. He appointed Cabinet members who supported Hillary in the primaries. Heck, he even appointed Hillary! I’m so proud of her and grateful to our entire national security team for all they’ve done to make us safer and stronger and to build a world with more partners and fewer enemies. I’m also grateful to the young men and women who serve our country in the military and to Michelle Obama and Jill Biden for supporting military families when their loved ones are overseas and for helping our veterans, when they come home bearing the wounds of war, or needing help with education, housing, and jobs.

President Obama’s record on national security is a tribute to his strength, and judgment, and to his preference for inclusion and partnership over partisanship.

He also tried to work with Congressional Republicans on Health Care, debt reduction, and jobs, but that didn’t work out so well. Probably because, as the Senate Republican leader, in a remarkable moment of candor, said two years before the election, their number one priority was not to put America back to work, but to put President Obama out of work.

Senator, I hate to break it to you, but we’re going to keep President Obama on the job!

In Tampa, the Republican argument against the President’s re-election was pretty simple: we left him a total mess, he hasn’t cleaned it up fast enough, so fire him and put us back in.

In order to look like an acceptable alternative to President Obama, they couldn’t say much about the ideas they have offered over the last two years. You see they want to go back to the same old policies that got us into trouble in the first place: to cut taxes for high income Americans even more than President Bush did; to get rid of those pesky financial regulations designed to prevent another crash and prohibit future bailouts; to increase defense spending two trillion dollars more than the Pentagon has requested without saying what they’ll spend the money on; to make enormous cuts in the rest of the budget, especially programs that help the middle class and poor kids. As another President once said – there they go again.

I like the argument for President Obama’s re-election a lot better. He inherited a deeply damaged economy, put a floor under the crash, began the long hard road to recovery, and laid the foundation for a modern, more well-balanced economy that will produce millions of good new jobs, vibrant new businesses, and lots of new wealth for the innovators.

Are we where we want to be? No. Is the President satisfied? No. Are we better off than we were when he took office, with an economy in free fall, losing 750,000 jobs a month. The answer is YES.

I understand the challenge we face. I know many Americans are still angry and frustrated with the economy. Though employment is growing, banks are beginning to lend and even housing prices are picking up a bit, too many people don’t feel it.

I experienced the same thing in 1994 and early 1995. Our policies were working and the economy was growing but most people didn’t feel it yet. By 1996, the economy was roaring, halfway through the longest peacetime expansion in American history.

President Obama started with a much weaker economy than I did. No President – not me or any of my predecessors could have repaired all the damage in just four years. But conditions are improving and if you’ll renew the President’s contract you will feel it.

I believe that with all my heart.

President Obama’s approach embodies the values, the ideas, and the direction America must take to build a 21st century version of the American Dream in a nation of shared opportunities, shared prosperity and shared responsibilities.

So back to the story. In 2010, as the President’s recovery program kicked in, the job losses stopped and things began to turn around.

The Recovery Act saved and created millions of jobs and cut taxes for 95% of the American people. In the last 29 months the economy has produced about 4.5 million private sector jobs. But last year, the Republicans blocked the President’s jobs plan costing the economy more than a million new jobs. So here’s another jobs score: President Obama plus 4.5 million, Congressional Republicans zero.

Over that same period, more than more than 500,000 manufacturing jobs have been created under President Obama – the first time manufacturing jobs have increased since the 1990s.

The auto industry restructuring worked. It saved more than a million jobs, not just at GM, Chrysler and their dealerships, but in auto parts manufacturing all over the country. That’s why even auto-makers that weren’t part of the deal supported it. They needed to save the suppliers too. Like I said, we’re all in this together.

Now there are 250,000 more people working in the auto industry than the day the companies were restructured. Governor Romney opposed the plan to save GM and Chrysler. So here’s another jobs score: Obama two hundred and fifty thousand, Romney, zero.

The agreement the administration made with management, labor and environmental groups to double car mileage over the next few years is another good deal: it will cut your gas bill in half, make us more energy independent, cut greenhouse gas emissions, and add another 500,000 good jobs.

President Obama’s “all of the above” energy plan is helping too – the boom in oil and gas production combined with greater energy efficiency has driven oil imports to a near 20 year low and natural gas production to an all time high. Renewable energy production has also doubled.

We do need more new jobs, lots of them, but there are already more than three million jobs open and unfilled in America today, mostly because the applicants don’t have the required skills. We have to prepare more Americans for the new jobs that are being created in a world fueled by new technology. That’s why investments in our people are more important than ever. The President has supported community colleges and employers in working together to train people for open jobs in their communities. And, after a decade in which exploding college costs have increased the drop-out rate so much that we’ve fallen to 16th in the world in the percentage of our young adults with college degrees, his student loan reform lowers the cost of federal student loans and even more important, gives students the right to repay the loans as a fixed percentage of their incomes for up to 20 years. That means no one will have to drop-out of college for fear they can’t repay their debt, and no one will have to turn down a job, as a teacher, a police officer or a small town doctor because it doesn’t pay enough to make the debt payments. This will change the future for young Americans.

I know we’re better off because President Obama made these decisions.

That brings me to health care.

The Republicans call it Obamacare and say it’s a government takeover of health care that they’ll repeal. Are they right? Let’s look at what’s happened so far. Individuals and businesses have secured more than a billion dollars in refunds from their insurance premiums because the new law requires 80% to 85% of your premiums to be spent on health care, not profits or promotion. Other insurance companies have lowered their rates to meet the requirement. More than 3 million young people between 19 and 25 are insured for the first time because their parents can now carry them on family policies. Millions of seniors are receiving preventive care including breast cancer screenings and tests for heart problems. Soon the insurance companies, not the government, will have millions of new customers many of them middle class people with pre-existing conditions. And for the last two years, health care spending has grown under 4%, for the first time in 50 years.

So are we all better off because President Obama fought for it and passed it? You bet we are.

There were two other attacks on the President in Tampa that deserve an answer. Both Governor Romney and Congressman Ryan attacked the President for allegedly robbing Medicare of 716 billion dollars. Here’s what really happened. There were no cuts to benefits. None. What the President did was save money by cutting unwarranted subsidies to providers and insurance companies that weren’t making people any healthier. He used the saving to close the donut hole in the Medicare drug program, and to add eight years to the life of the Medicare Trust Fund. It’s now solvent until 2024. So President Obama and the Democrats didn’t weaken Medicare, they strengthened it.

When Congressman Ryan looked into the TV camera and attacked President Obama’s “biggest coldest power play” in raiding Medicare, I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry. You see, that 716 billion dollars is exactly the same amount of Medicare savings Congressman Ryan had in his own budget.

At least on this one, Governor Romney’s been consistent. He wants to repeal the savings and give the money back to the insurance companies, re-open the donut hole and force seniors to pay more for drugs, and reduce the life of the Medicare Trust Fund by eight years. So now if he’s elected and does what he promised Medicare will go broke by 2016. If that happens, you won’t have to wait until their voucher program to begins in 2023 to see the end Medicare as we know it.

But it gets worse. They also want to block grant Medicaid and cut it by a third over the coming decade. Of course, that will hurt poor kids, but that’s not all. Almost two-thirds of Medicaid is spent on nursing home care for seniors and on people with disabilities, including kids from middle class families, with special needs like, Downs syndrome or Autism. I don’t know how those families are going to deal with it. We can’t let it happen

Now let’s look at the Republican charge that President Obama wants to weaken the work requirements in the welfare reform bill I signed that moved millions of people from welfare to work.

Here’s what happened. When some Republican governors asked to try new ways to put people on welfare back to work, the Obama Administration said they would only do it if they had a credible plan to increase employment by 20%. You hear that? More work. So the claim that President Obama weakened welfare reform’s work requirement is just not true. But they keep running ads on it. As their campaign pollster said “we’re not going to let our campaign be dictated by fact checkers.” Now that is true. I couldn’t have said it better myself – I just hope you remember that every time you see the ad.

Let’s talk about the debt. We have to deal with it or it will deal with us. President Obama has offered a plan with 4 trillion dollars in debt reduction over a decade, with two and a half dollars of spending reductions for every one dollar of revenue increases, and tight controls on future spending. It’s the kind of balanced approach proposed by the bipartisan Simpson-Bowles commission.

I think the President’s plan is better than the Romney plan, because the Romney plan fails the first test of fiscal responsibility: The numbers don’t add up.

It’s supposed to be a debt reduction plan but it begins with five trillion dollars in tax cuts over a ten-year period. That makes the debt hole bigger before they even start to dig out. They say they’ll make it up by eliminating loopholes in the tax code. When you ask “which loopholes and how much?,” they say “See me after the election on that.”

People ask me all the time how we delivered four surplus budgets. What new ideas did we bring? I always give a one-word answer: arithmetic. If they stay with a 5 trillion dollar tax cut in a debt reduction plan – the – arithmetic tells us that one of three things will happen: 1) they’ll have to eliminate so many deductions like the ones for home mortgages and charitable giving that middle class families will see their tax bill go up two thousand dollars year while people making over 3 million dollars a year get will still get a 250,000 dollar tax cut; or 2) they’ll have to cut so much spending that they’ll obliterate the budget for our national parks, for ensuring clean air, clean water, safe food, safe air travel; or they’ll cut way back on Pell Grants, college loans, early childhood education and other programs that help middle class families and poor children, not to mention cutting investments in roads, bridges, science, technology and medical research; or 3) they’ll do what they’ve been doing for thirty plus years now – cut taxes more than they cut spending, explode the debt, and weaken the economy. Remember, Republican economic policies quadrupled the debt before I took office and doubled it after I left. We simply can’t afford to double-down on trickle-down.

President Obama’s plan cuts the debt, honors our values, and brightens the future for our children, our families and our nation.

My fellow Americans, you have to decide what kind of country you want to live in. If you want a you’re on your own, winner take all society you should support the Republican ticket. If you want a country of shared opportunities and shared responsibilities – a “we’re all in it together” society, you should vote for Barack Obama and Joe Biden. If you want every American to vote and you think its wrong to change voting procedures just to reduce the turnout of younger, poorer, minority and disabled voters, you should support Barack Obama. If you think the President was right to open the doors of American opportunity to young immigrants brought here as children who want to go to college or serve in the military, you should vote for Barack Obama. If you want a future of shared prosperity, where the middle class is growing and poverty is declining, where the American Dream is alive and well, and where the United States remains the leading force for peace and prosperity in a highly competitive world, you should vote for Barack Obama.

I love our country – and I know we’re coming back. For more than 200 years, through every crisis, we’ve always come out stronger than we went in. And we will again as long as we do it together. We champion the cause for which our founders pledged their lives, their fortunes, their sacred honor – to form a more perfect union.

If that’s what you believe, if that’s what you want, we have to re-elect President Barack Obama.

God Bless You. God Bless America.

Click share this, on the right, to LIKE this article on Facebook or TWEET it on Twitter!

Jeb Bush praises Obama, tells GOP they need to raise revenue

I get shit each day I tell people I kinda like Jeb Bush. Today’s CBS This Morning interview gave me another example I can show as to why I don’t hate Jeb Bush, like many automatically do because of his last name.

I have always thought Jeb Bush is one of the most tempered Republicans we have today, more willing to come to middle ground decisions based on actual reason, and something even more lacking in today’s ultra-conservative-hijacked GOP—common sense.

Jeb Bush weighs more heavily on philosophical differences on how to govern rather than  weighing almost all decisions on religious values, which has become the perceived trademark of Republicanism today. This is Republicanism of old, which embraced moderation in order to find real solutions to help the American people.

I like that Jeb gave credit where credit is due, giving praise for Obama’s handling of education policy, for example. I like that Jeb is telling his own party that if they are serious about fighting deficits, Republicans should accept a deal that not only cuts spending but raises revenue (Republicanspeak for “raise taxes”), too. Saying “No” to all tax increases is just foolish and unsustainable.

I wish Jeb would speak out more. I wish he would school his own Republican Party about what works and what doesn’t. I wish Jeb would help push the party forward to seriously accept diversity and press for equality.

I’m tired being stuck in a choice of either or, each election season. I want to have two parties that embrace diversity and equality so that no matter who wins, it’s not either or when it comes to my civil liberties.

Click share this, on the right, to LIKE this article on Facebook or TWEET it on Twitter!

Feed America’s Children
The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, formerly called the Food Stamp Program, provides benefits to people in households with low-income and few assets to help them purchase food to be eaten at home.
Children who fall below the poverty line, children benefiting from SNAP most likely also benefit from the National School Lunch Program, free or reduced price breakfasts and lunches at schools across the nation. In many cases, these are the only meals they’ll eat for the day.
Both of these programs are currently under assault by members of Congress who want to cut these benefits, a necessity for low-income and lower middle-income families (families who work but don’t have enough money for food after covering the costs of rent, fuel, medicine, etc.), while also offering large tax cuts to the wealthiest Americans.
Call your member of Congress today to voice your support for hungry children who benefit from these programs. Say “NO!” to child hunger.
Click share this, on the right, to LIKE this article on Facebook or TWEET it on Twitter!

Feed America’s Children

The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, formerly called the Food Stamp Program, provides benefits to people in households with low-income and few assets to help them purchase food to be eaten at home.

Children who fall below the poverty line, children benefiting from SNAP most likely also benefit from the National School Lunch Program, free or reduced price breakfasts and lunches at schools across the nation. In many cases, these are the only meals they’ll eat for the day.

Both of these programs are currently under assault by members of Congress who want to cut these benefits, a necessity for low-income and lower middle-income families (families who work but don’t have enough money for food after covering the costs of rent, fuel, medicine, etc.), while also offering large tax cuts to the wealthiest Americans.

Call your member of Congress today to voice your support for hungry children who benefit from these programs. Say “NO!” to child hunger.

Click share this, on the right, to LIKE this article on Facebook or TWEET it on Twitter!

It is easy enough to vote right and be consistently with the majority. But it is more often more important to be ahead of the majority and this means being willing to cut the first furrow in the ground and stand alone for a while if necessary.

Late Congresswoman Patsy Takemoto Mink (D-Hawaii), author of Title IX Amendment of the Higher Education Act.

Click share this, on the right, to LIKE this article on Facebook or TWEET it on Twitter!

Don’t take your rights for granted on International Women’s Day

March 8 is International Women’s Day. What’s the appropriate way to commemorate the day? I’ve got three.

  • Don’t take your rights as women for granted. It wasn’t long ago that women couldn’t do some of the things we enjoy today—like go to a school of your choice and study what you want to learn.
  • Learn and remember those who fought for women’s rights. They sacrificed so much of themselves so you could do some of the things you enjoy today.
  • Feel empowered to take up the fight from where they left off and continue the pursuit for progress on promises of equality. Injustices still exist today.

Today, I’ll be thinking about freed slave Sojourner Truth, who, obviously fighting racism, famously stood up for her rights as a female at the 1851 Women’s Convention saying, "Ain’t I a woman?"

Today, I’ll be thinking about Bella Abzug who, running for Congress was heckled that she belonged in the house. She empowered herself by turning the slight into her campaign slogan, “This woman belongs in the House.” By that, she meant the U.S. House of Representatives. And she didn’t stop there! She pursued continued progress on Black civil rights and became a leading advocate of the Equal Rights Amendment for women. A die-hard liberal Democrat, she was joined by First Lady Betty Ford, a Republican, in the matter.

Did you know Bella Abzug introduced the first federal gay rights bill in Congress? It was called the Equality Act of 1974. With that, she became one of the first open allies of the LGBT community on Capitol Hill.

Bella Abzug on East 14th St. in NYC, campaigning for city council candidate Miriam Friedlander in 1974. In Congress, Abzug pursued more progress on Black civil rights, fought for the Equal Rights Amendment for women’s rights, and introduced the first federal bill for gay rights. Photo by EA Schwartz.

Today, I’ll be thinking about Patsy Takemoto Mink, the first woman of color to be elected to Congress.

As a student discriminated against for being Japanese-American, Mink was responsible for desegregating dorms at the University of Nebraska.

Having received bachelor’s degrees in chemistry and zoology, she found out that twenty medical schools to which she applied denied her application simply because she was a woman. She turned oppression into opportunity, going to law school instead. She had a mind to change the status quo so future generations of girls wouldn’t be put through the challenge she just faced.

Minked worked her way up from local Honolulu politics, into the Hawaii Territorial Legislature and then made a historic run for Congress. Making it to the halls of Capitol Hill, she engaged her male colleagues to advance women’s causes.

She ended up authoring the Title IX Amendment of the Higher Education Act, guaranteeing that any school taking federal money must offer equal opportunities for girls in academics and athletics.

It was a long, drawn-out fight but Mink and her fellow Congresswomen succeeded in passing the law on June 23, 1972. “No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance,” the U.S. Code now stipulates.

Patsy Takemoto Mink was the first woman of color elected to Congress. She was the author of Title IX Amendment of the Higher Education Act. President George W. Bush signed a change to the name of the law, becoming the Patsy Mink Equal Opportunity in Education Act.

1972! That’s fairly recent in our American history! We reap so many rewards from this federal equality guarantee but take them for granted. I highly recommend every girl and young woman watch the documentary, Patsy Mink: Ahead of the Majority.

“I never doubted that I would have the opportunity to go to college—even graduate school—and to play sports,” said filmmaker Kimberlee Bassford, who was born after Title IX.  “Women of my generation take for granted the very things that Patsy Mink fought for.”

Bassford, of Chinese and Filipino descent, also looked up to Mink as a model of a modern Asian-American woman. And I look up to her as a model of my Asian-American heritage, as well.

I happen to quote Mink all the time in my own public speaking engagements. I’ve practically developed a whole philosophy around it. I think you should remember my favorite quote, too. 

Mink was often derided as being too radical when it came to civil rights, women’s rights, even gay rights. She said, “It is easy enough to vote right and be consistently with the majority.  But it is more often more important to be ahead of the majority and this means being willing to cut the first furrow in the ground and stand alone for a while if necessary.”

In other words, sometimes progress means being the first to take a stand. That’s the only way change happens. It’s hard but I remind myself that all the time. Sure, I’m gonna have haters for some of the things I believe in, but I can’t be afraid to express what I believe is right.

RECOMMENDED READING

Click share this, on the right, to LIKE this article on Facebook or TWEET it on Twitter!

When it comes to the rights of others, I don’t play politics. It is the right thing to do.

U.S. Senator Everett Dirksen, Republican from Illinois, defended his support of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

Click share this, on the right, to LIKE this article on Facebook or TWEET it on Twitter!

I’m outraged that there are currently major candidates for President of the United States who are using homophobia to rally their base. I’m pissed off at my Republican family back in North Carolina, several of whom came to my wedding, but who went right back and are voting for homophobes and acting like it doesn’t matter. It does matter and it’s time for the queers in this country to start saying so to their families. I think we’ve all cut them too much slack for far too long.
Armistead Maupin

Roseanne running for Green presidential nomination

Hawaii-resident Roseanne Barr has always been a political person. She wrote much of her beliefs on American social issues into her award-winning television show based out of fictional Lanford, a lower-middle-class, blue collar town in downstate Illinois, not too far from Chicago.

Roseanne’s brand of progressiveness/liberalism, as showcased on the television show, featured labor rights, union-company relations, consumer issues, corporate greed, political corruption, and the concerns that create an environment of political apathy. She also touched on women’s rights, and was a pioneer in television, touching on lesbian and gay issues at a time when censors and networks were afraid of what it would do to their ratings and commercial advertising sales.

Fed-up with two-party domination in American politics, and a “more of the same” attitude towards both the Democratic and Republican parties, Roseanne Barr is putting herself out as a serious candidate for President of the United States.

Roseanne filed papers to campaign for the Green Party nomination for the presidency. Visit her campaign website: Roseanneforpresident.com.

GETTING PAST THE COMEDY

While many find difficulty getting past her comedy roles, and personality style portrayed in her failed talk show and current reality-television series, Roseanne wants to remind people she’s always been, at the heart of her work, expressing the frustrations people have about everyday life in America.

Roseanne argues that her nomination should not be taken as a joke and that her campaign is driven on a belief that Democrats and Republicans are not working in the best interests of the American people. Speaking of the two parties during her announcement on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, “They both suck and they both are a bunch of criminals.”

Roseanne wrote many of her political beliefs into her award-winning sitcom.

GREEN PARTY WELCOMES ROSEANNE

Green Party leadership officially welcomed Roseanne’s candidacy for the nomination, along with the candidacy of Dr. Jill Stein"Anyone hopeful about the Occupy Wall Street’s challenge to the status quo or disappointed by the Obama Administration’s broken promises of change now has a pair of candidates to watch. Anyone bored or irritated with the Mitt Versus Newt Show by now will be relieved by the breath of fresh air — maybe a Green gale force of righteousness — that’s about to come," said Tamar Yager, a national co-chair of the Green Party.

Roseanne understands that running on a third-party ticket is an uphill battle. On her Tonight Show appearance and comments afterward, Roseanne said that she wants to get into the debates and bring up real issues the others won’t talk about, “I want to represent the taxpayers.”

Read Roseanne’s submission to the Green Party: Green Party Candidate Qustionnaire.

ROSEANNE’S PLATFORM

Roseanne cited five main issues driving her candidacy: obliteration of the two-party system, corporations are not people, economic justice, healthcare not warfare, legalization of marijuana.

She also cites affinity with the Green Party, “The Green Party platform is a straightforward, commonsense approach to the central issues facing America today and this is why I look forward to knocking on doors, lighting up Twitter and taking to the airwaves to promote our values and message.  As a mother and grandmother, and as someone who has spent a career in a male dominated and chauvinistic industry, the Green Party’s views on feminism strongly appeal to me.”

DEMOCRATS OPPOSE GREEN PARTY

As the Green Party started growing at the grassroots, in neighborhoods and municipal government, Democrats started ramping up opposition to the party’s existence. The opposition became most heated when the Green Party nominated Ralph Nader in 2000 to run against Democrat Vice President Al Gore and Republican Texas Governor George W. Bush. Many die-hard Democrats blamed, and continue to blame, Green Party members and followers for robbing Gore of votes that would have propelled him to the presidency.

Dr. Jill Stein is also running for the Green Party presidential nomination. She is a former candidate for Governor of Massachusetts. Visit her campaign website: Jillstein.org.

TEN KEY VALUES

The Green Party is built on what it calls Ten Key Values, ratified in Denver, Colorado in 2000:

1. GRASSROOTS DEMOCRACY: Every human being deserves a say in the decisions that affect their lives and not be subject to the will of another. Therefore, we will work to increase public participation at every level of government and to ensure that our public representatives are fully accountable to the people who elect them. We will also work to create new types of political organizations which expand the process of participatory democracy by directly including citizens in the decision-making process.

2. SOCIAL JUSTICE AND EQUAL OPPORTUNITY: All persons should have the rights and opportunity to benefit equally from the resources afforded us by society and the environment. We must consciously confront in ourselves, our organizations, and society at large, barriers such as racism and class oppression, sexism and homophobia, ageism and disability, which act to deny fair treatment and equal justice under the law.

3. ECOLOGICAL WISDOM: Human societies must operate with the understanding that we are part of nature, not separate from nature.  We must maintain an ecological balance and live within the ecological and resource limits of our communities and our planet. We support a sustainable society which utilizes resources in such a way that future generations will benefit and not suffer from the practices of our generation. To this end we must practice agriculture which replenishes the soil; move to an energy efficient economy; and live in ways that respect the integrity of natural systems.

4. NON-VIOLENCE: It is essential that we develop effective alternatives to society’s current patterns of violence. We will work to demilitarize, and eliminate weapons of mass destruction, without being naive about the intentions of other governments.  We recognize the need for self-defense and the defense of others who are in helpless situations. We promote non-violent methods to oppose practices and policies with which we disagree, and will guide our actions toward lasting personal, community and global peace.

5. DECENTRALIZATION: Centralization of wealth and power contributes to social and economic injustice, environmental destruction, and militarization. Therefore, we support a restructuring of social, political and economic institutions away from a system which is controlled by and mostly benefits the powerful few, to a democratic, less bureaucratic system. Decision-making should, as much as possible, remain at the individual and local level, while assuring that civil rights are protected for all citizens.

6. COMMUNITY-BASED ECONOMICS AND ECONOMIC JUSTICE: We recognize it is essential to create a vibrant and sustainable economic system, one that can create jobs and provide a decent standard of living for all people while maintaining a healthy ecological balance. A successful economic system will offer meaningful work with dignity, while paying a “living wage” which reflects the real value of a person’s work.

Local communities must look to economic development that assures protection of the environment and workers’ rights; broad citizen participation in planning; and enhancement of our “quality of life.” We support independently owned and operated companies which are socially responsible, as well as co-operatives and public enterprises that distribute resources and control to more people through democratic participation.

7. FEMINISM AND GENDER EQUITY: We have inherited a social system based on male domination of politics and economics. We call for the replacement of the cultural ethics of domination and control with more cooperative ways of interacting that respect differences of opinion and gender. Human values such as equity between the sexes, interpersonal responsibility, and honesty must be developed with moral conscience. We should remember that the process that determines our decisions and actions is just as important as achieving the outcome we want.

8. RESPECT FOR DIVERSITY: We believe it is important to value cultural, ethnic, racial, sexual, religious and spiritual diversity, and to promote the development of respectful relationships across these lines.

We believe that the many diverse elements of society should be reflected in our organizations and decision-making bodies, and we support the leadership of people who have been traditionally closed out of leadership roles. We acknowledge and encourage respect for other life forms than our own and the preservation of biodiversity.

9. PERSONAL AND GLOBAL RESPONSIBILITY: We encourage individuals to act to improve their personal well-being and, at the same time, to enhance ecological balance and social harmony. We seek to join with people and organizations around the world to foster peace, economic justice, and the health of the planet.

10. FUTURE FOCUS AND SUSTAINABILITY: Our actions and policies should be motivated by long-term goals. We seek to protect valuable natural resources, safely disposing of or “unmaking” all waste we create, while developing a sustainable economics that does not depend on continual expansion for survival. We must counterbalance the drive for short-term profits by assuring that economic development, new technologies, and fiscal policies are responsible to future generations who will inherit the results of our actions.

The Green Party of the United States was formed in 2001 as an outgrowth of the Association of State Green Parties, which was formed in 1996.

Why I gave a few dollars to Linda Lingle for U.S. Senate

I made my first political contribution of the 2012 election year. And it’s not to a presidential candidate. I am most concerned for the economy of my homestate and welfare of my family, neighbors, friends I’ve left behind in Hawaii. That is why, while my contribution is small, a mere few dollars, I thought it important that it be offered to Linda Lingle for U.S. Senate from Hawaii.

While, as a young gay man, I disagree with Linda’s decision to veto civil unions in my homestate, it is not the only issue on my mind. LGBT civil rights are still important and I do support people who are taking a stand for them. But at the forefront of my mind when I think of my island birthplace, I ask myself what I believe has kept me from going back to Hawaii, and what can its elected leaders do to change the environment so that future generations won’t have a need to do as I did, to find meaningful, sustainable work and create a family on the mainland.

I have concluded that tired old ideas, mired in the muck of traditional political partisanship, remain a major roadblock to progress in Hawaii. And, as was the problem when I left Hawaii for Chicago in 2001, the economy is in dire need of a major shake-up.

Linda is refreshing. When you consider her background and her philosophy, they stand quite different from what has been the model for leadership in Hawaii. 

I stand by Linda’s ideas to stimulate the local Hawaiian economy, by working to expand opportunities for Hawaii tourism, and helping local businesses gain capital, to invest in themselves, strengthening their enterprises while creating local jobs.

I believe, and Linda believes, that as soon as you create a good economy, all other concerns start to get better as a result. A vibrant, growing economy conceives better jobs, jobs that help provide health and medical insurance when we and our family members get sick. A healthy economy provides to improve infrastructure, improve schools, and invest in resources to raise the quality of education. Improved education creates a smarter workforce that can only build more strength and girth to sustain Hawaii into the future.

I believe that Linda is the most independent-minded, most willing to listen and most willing to digest all points of views before making a thoughtful decision on the matters that affect the lives of Hawaii residents, and as a U.S. Senator, of Americans across the nation, even me on the beaches of Lake Michigan, along the Chicago prairie shores.

Linda’s brand of independence, her brand of “People First” mission and vision, is what we need to remedy the seemingly permanent vehement partisan divide on Capitol Hill. I like that Linda has expressed her want to work with whomever is elected to the White House, Democrat or Republican, to build on common ground, to fulfill the dreams of millions of Americans for sustainable healthy life, protected liberty and the active pursuit of happiness.

I agree with President Obama that “Change” is needed. One of those changes we need is to send more advocates of bipartisanship to Washington. We need people talking and actively working together to create the “Change” that will make our local communities, and our nation at large, stronger than it has ever been. I like that Linda promises to serve the people before any party.

I am proud to support Linda Lingle.

We’re history buffs at GeraldFarinas.com so we kinda got orgasmic getting into the details of this mock trial! BBC News Magazine reports from Ben Franklin Hall in Philadelphia about an interesting debate between American lawyers and British barristers this past Tuesday regarding the legality of the Declaration of Independence.
The English legal team argued that the document written by Thomas Jefferson was illegitimate and illegal. Americans argued Natural Law, that government only exists at the will of the people. They also said that the English created their own declaration previous to 1776 during the Glorious Revolution against King James II, an act they still deem legal.
The verdict? American wins. The Declaration of Independence was legitimate and legal.

We’re history buffs at GeraldFarinas.com so we kinda got orgasmic getting into the details of this mock trial! BBC News Magazine reports from Ben Franklin Hall in Philadelphia about an interesting debate between American lawyers and British barristers this past Tuesday regarding the legality of the Declaration of Independence.

The English legal team argued that the document written by Thomas Jefferson was illegitimate and illegal. Americans argued Natural Law, that government only exists at the will of the people. They also said that the English created their own declaration previous to 1776 during the Glorious Revolution against King James II, an act they still deem legal.

The verdict? American wins. The Declaration of Independence was legitimate and legal.