Progressive Calendar 12.01.05
From: David Shove (
Date: Thu, 1 Dec 2005 04:18:16 -0800 (PST)
             P R O G R E S S I V E   C A L E N D A R     12.01.05

1. CAC breakfast      12.01 7:30am
2. Eagan peace vigil  12.01 4:30pm
3. Renewable energy   12.01 5pm
4. Small is beautiful 12.01 5pm
5. Light rail         12.01 5pm
6. Hennepin taxes     12.01 5:30pm
7. West suburban GP   12.01 6pm
8. McDonald sisters   12.01 7pm
9. Spirit progress    12.01 7pm
10. Rosa Parks        12.01 7pm
11. Anti-war/dance    12.01 8pm

12. Human rights      12.02/03 7am
13. City investment   12.02 9:30am
14. Ffunch lunch      12.02 11:30am
15. Counter recruit   12.02 12noon
16. Palestine vigil   12.02 4:15pm
17. MnSOAWatch        12.02 6:30pm

18. Alexander Cockburn - How the Democrats undercut John Murtha
19. Susan H Pitcairn   - When Democrats ask for money
20. Richard Heinberg   - Who are the Neocons?
21. PANNA              - Corporate structure bad for public health
22. ed                 - Grimmer grammar (word thing)

--------1 of 22--------

From: Renee Jenson <faarjenson [at]>
Subject: CAC breakfast 12.01 7:30am

The Ramsey County Community Human Services Citizens Advisory Council (CAC)
hosts a Legislative Breakfast Thursday, December 1, from 7:30-9am at the
Family Place, 244 10th Street East, in St. Paul.  The CAC is a volunteer
group of concerned citizens and family members who work with the County to
improve the delivery of services.

The theme this year is "Housing .... Don't get caught without it."  The
members of the Ramsy County Legislative delegation who have replied in the
affirmative that they are attending are: Mee Moua, Chuck Wiger, Ellen
Anderson, Sheldon Johnson, Alice Hausman, Mindy Greiling, Don Betzold, and
Bev Scalze.

Commissioners Janice Rettman and Victoria Reinhardt will attend.  Aides
for Commissioner Parker and Carter will attend.  We have also invited
allmembers of the City Council, Mayor, Mayor Elect, Governor, and special
guests (task force who created the plan on Homelessness, DHS Commissioner,
Association of MN Counties, etc.)

Here is the sequence of presentations:
                Developmental Disabilities
                Children's Mental Health
                Chemical Health
                Adult Services
                Mental Health
                Children's Services

It is going to be a good program.  I hope people take time out of their
busy schedules to stop in and listen to the concerns of their constituents
on this issue.

--------2 of 22--------

From: Greg and Sue Skog <skograce [at]>
Subject: Eagan peace vigil 12.01 4:30pm

CANDLELIGHT PEACE VIGIL EVERY THURSDAY from 4:30-5:30pm on the Northwest
corner of Pilot Knob Road and Yankee Doodle Road in Eagan. We have signs
and candles. Say "NO to war!" The weekly vigil is sponsored by: Friends
south of the river speaking out against war.

--------3 of 22--------

From: Jennifer Nguyen <nguy1031 [at]>
Subject: Renewable energy 12.01 5pm

Renewed Perspectives: Renewable Energy Forum 2005

New legislation would create a renewable energy standard for the state of
Minnesota.  The standard would require 20% of energy produced in Minnesota
to come from renewable sources by the year 2020.  21 states have already
adopted a similar renewable energy standard.  Should Minnesota become the

Come find out how the new standard would impact business, labor, and the
University.  Xcel Energy, United Steelworkers, Minnesotans for an Energy
Efficient Economy, and the U's Institute for Renewable Energy and the
Environment will present four unique perspectives on the issue.

Free food and drinks!  Plus T-shirts!

Proudly presented by EcoWatch, with the help of the Institute for
Renewable Energy and the Environment, Ecosystem Science and Sustainability
Initiative, and MPIRG (the Minnesota Public Interest Research Group-U of M

Thursday December 1, 5pm
Mississippi Room
Coffman Memorial Union (UNIVERSITY OF MINNESOTA)
300 Washington Ave SE
Minneapolis MN 55455

--------4 of 22--------

From: Jesse Mortenson <jmortenson [at]>
Subject: Small is beautiful 12.01 5pm

12.01 5pm
Cahoots coffeehouse
Selby 1/2 block east of Snelling in StPaul

Limit bigboxes, chain stores, TIF, corporate welfare, billboards; promote
small business and co-ops, local production & self-sufficiency.

--------5 of 22--------

From: Elizabeth Dickinson <eadickinson [at]>
From: "Dan Walsh" <danw [at]>
Subject: Light rail 12.01 5pm

The Central Corridor Partnership invites you to join us fora presentation
on Salt Lake City's light rail project given by Bill Knowles, who was
responsible for creating the business community construction mitigation
effort in Salt Lake City.

We hope you can find the time to take advantage of Mr. Knowles' visit to
the Twin Cities despite the short notice. You will find his presentation
to be very informative of Salt Lake City's experience with the impact of
their light rail on the business community before, during, and after

Thursday December1,5-6:30 (5-6pmpresentation followed by
question and answer 6-6:30pm)

University UNITED 1954 University Ave Suite 9 St. Paul, MN 55104
Parking available in lot and street

Please RSVP by email or phone to: Priscilla Zee Director of Central
Corridor Partnership Saint Paul Area Chamber of Commerce 651.265.2782
priscilla [at]  

--------6 of 22--------

From: Todd Heintz <proud2liveinjordan [at]>
Subject: Hennepin taxes 12.01 5:30pm

Hennepin County's Truth-in-Taxation public hearing will be held at 5:30pm
Thursday, Dec 1, in the Board Room on the 24th Floor of the Government

Hennepin County has mailed a notice to each property owner in the county
showing the impact of the proposed property tax levy, as required by the
state's Truth-in-Taxation law.  The County Board set a maximum levy
increase of 3.98 percent, but the levy can be lowered by the board during
its budget deliberations.

The parcel-specific notice also indicates the impact of taxes proposed by
other local units of government, such as cities and school districts.

The board will approve the 2006 county budget Tuesday, Dec. 13.

--------7 of 22--------

From: Will Donovan III <manisape [at]>
Subject: West suburban GP 12.01 6pm

The St. Louis Park Green Party will be hosting a Potluck Dinner on Dec
1rst to discuss and celebrate the upcoming merger of the St. Louis Park
Green Party with the NW Metro Green Party to form a currently unnamed
coalition of western suburban Metro locals. The suburbs include St. Louis
Park, Hopkins, Crystal, New Hope, Robbinsdale, and Golden Valley.

You are invited if you live in one of the suburbs listed above, or if you
are a specially invited guest.

Potluck Dinner
Monterey Cohousing Community
2925 Monterey Ave S, St. Louis Park
(easy to find, right off of Minnetonka Blvd, signs will be posted at the
6-9pm (Dinner from 6-7, discussion from 7-9)
Bring a dish.
Drinks and dinnerware will be provided!
Kids very welcome.

Contact Will Donovan (952)933-1078

-------8 of 22-------

From: scot b <earthmannow [at]>
Subject: McDonald sisters 12.01 7pm

Back by popular demand, the wonderful, the inspirational Mc Donald Sisters

The McDonald sistersRita, Kate, Brigid, and Janeare popular pillars of the
Minnesota peace and justice community.  Born and raised in rural
Minnesota, the sisters come from a family of 11 children who were taught
that helping others was the essence of being a good Catholic. They joined
the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet, devoting decades of their lives
to working with women and children. Along the way, they became activists
for social justice.

The Sisters will be with the St. Croix Valley Peacemakers
on Thursday evening December 1
Ascension Episcopal Church in Stillwater.
214 North 3rd St.  [ 3 buildings North of postoffice ]

Please join us to ring in the season of peace. Come prepared to share
songs, stories, tales of peace, joy and unity that give meaning to the
season of peace on earth good will to all. The evening will be one of
celebration of peace and restoring of hope and joy in our lives.

We will discuss extending an invitation to other groups in the valley
interested in peace to talk about possible collaborative efforts.

--------9 of 22--------

From: Charles Underwood <charleyunderwood [at]>
Subject: Spiritual progressives 12.01 7pm

Thursday, 12/1, 7 pm, monthly meeting of Network of Spiritual Progressives,
Plymouth Congregational Church, Jankman Rm, 1900 Nicollet Ave, Mpls.  FFI:
ntorbett [at]

--------10 of 22--------

From: Phyllis E. Messenger <Pmessenger [at]>
Subject: Remembering Rosa Parks 12.01 7pm

The event begins at 7pm on Thursday. The flyer notes that the keynote
speaker is Dr. Rosilyn Carroll (Center for Excellence in Urban Teaching)
and the award-winning gospel group Excelsior Chorale Ensemble will
perform. There will also be comments by Hamline President Linda Hanson and
members of the faculty, staff, students and Board of Trustees. Contact
number is the MISA Office at 651-523-2423.

INSPIRATION"  A celebration in music, film and spoken word marking the
50th Anniversary of Rosa Parks' detention for refusing to give up her seat
on the bus to a white man.

Thursday December 1
Hamline United Methodist Church, 1514 Englewood Av., St. Paul
sponsored by students of Hamline University

--------11 of 22-------

From: Blythe Staley <blythe.staley [at]>
Subject: Anti-war/dance 12.01 8pm

Thursday-Saturday, December 1-3, 8pm
$25 ($20 Walker members)-McGuire Theater, Walker Art Center, 1750 Hennepin
Avenue, Minneapolis
Tickets/Information: 612.375.7600 or

"A freshness, strength, and edginess that confirm her place at the
forefront of innovative European dance performance."-Dance Theatre Journal

In 1967, famed Belgian choreographer Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker was given
the LP Joan Baez in Concert, Part 2. Though she didn't understand the
lyrics as a child, she was moved by the delicate melodies and haunting
voice of the singer. De Keersmaeker's tour-de-force solo ONCE imbues
Baez's original Vietnam-era antiwar message with new power in this time of
global conflict. Set to the album in its entirety, the work juxtaposes the
insurgent poetry of the lyrics with the seductive austerity of
contemporary European dance. The result is a tender, lovingly
choreographed clash of pure motion and emotion. De Keersmaeker's last
Minnesota appearance was 1999's brilliantly physical Drumming, performed
with her company Rosas. ONCE, her first-ever solo performance, will be
seen in the United States only in Minneapolis and New York.

--------12 of 22--------

From: humanrts [at]
Subject: Human rights 12.02/03 7am

The Minnesota Department of Human Rights, 22nd Annual Human Rights Day
Conference is all most here!  December 2 registration begins at 7am at the
St. Paul RiverCentre.  The theme: "Till Victory is Won: Commemorating the
50th Anniversary of the Minnesota Human Rights Act".

There is still time to register.  For conference and registration
information see our web site at:  Or if you have
questions about the workshops, parking, hotels, etc., please call
651-296-5996, or 1- 800-657-3704 and press # 302 for assistance.

--------13 of 22--------

From: Pat Haswell & Dick Todd <haswelltodd [at]>
Subject: City investment 12.02 9:30am

The forum in the announcement below focuses on Richmond, Virginia's
decision to concentrate the city's Community Block Development Grants
dollars for 1999-2004 in small geographic areas in high need of
reinvestment, instead of the common practice of spreading these funds
relatively evenly across all neighborhoods. The speakers will present
evidence that this focused investment had a high, positive impact leading
to subsequent self-sustaining private investment in the target areas. 
Forum sponsors hope to inform discussion in St. Paul and the local area
over how to get the most out public economic development spending.

There is a $10 charge, to help cover expenses, which can be paid in
advance or at the door.  (For details, see the registration information on
the website.)

Targeted Investments and Neighborhood Development

The Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis and Twin Cities LISC (Local
Initiatives Support Corporation) invite you to attend a Community
Development Forum: Targeted Investments and Neighborhood Development. The
morning forum will take place at the Humanities Education Center in St.
Paul on Friday, December 2, from 9:30am to 12noon.

Professor George Galster of Wayne State University, Greta Harris of
Richmond LISC, and Dan Tatar of the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond will
discuss the City of Richmond, Virginia's, Neighborhoods in Bloom
Initiative and the results of a research evaluation of the initiative
commissioned by the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond. 

For more information about the forum, including instructions on how to
register, please go to
or contact Jacqueline Gausvik at 612-204-5869.

--------14 of 22--------

From: David Shove <shove001 [at]>
Subject: Ffunch lunch 12.02 11:30am

First Friday Lunch (FFUNCH) for Greens/progressives.

Informal political talk and hanging out.

Day By Day Cafe 477 W 7th Av St Paul.
Meet in the private room (holds 12+).

Day By Day is non-smoking; has soups, salads, sandwiches, and dangerous
apple pie; is close to downtown St Paul & on major bus lines

--------15 of 22--------

From: sarah standefer <scsrn [at]>
Subject: Counter recruit 12.02 12noon

Counter Recruitment Demonstration
 Our Children Are Not Cannon Fodder
Fridays   NOON-1
Recruiting Office at the U of M
At Washington and Oak St.  next to Chipolte
for info call Barb Mishler 612-871-7871

--------16 of 22--------

From: peace 2u <tkanous [at]>
Subject: Palestine vigil 12.02 4:15pm

Every Friday
Vigil to End the Occupation of Palestine
Summit & Snelling, St. Paul

There are now millions of Palestinians who are refugees due to Israel's
refusal to recognize their right under international law to return to
their own homes since 1948.

--------17 of 22-------

From: mnsoaw [at]
Subject: MnSOAWatch 12.02 6:30pm

We thank Minnesotans, Sam Foster and Steve Clemens for their witness this
year at the gates of Fort Benning. They will both appear in federal court
January 30th, 2006 in Columbus Georgia for crossing the line in opposition
to the School of the Americas, our homeland terrorist training school.
Both face a maximum of six months in prison and a $5000 fine.  We are
planning an early January event honoring these two advocates for justice.

An Evening with Ita, Maura, Dorothy and Jean
Friday, December 2, 6:30-8:30pm
Carondelet Center 1890 Randolph Ave St Paul, MN

Remembering the four churchwomen killed in El Salvador on the 25th
Anniversary of their martyrdom. Three of the five soldiers responsible for
their rape and murder were trained at the School of the Americas. The
event presented by Women Religious for Justice, includes a live theatrical
production and a chance to reflect on the lives of these four amazing
women of faith, justice and peace. For more information about this play,
reflection, discussion and action call 651.690.7079

--------18 of 22--------

He Pointed the Way Out; They Chopped Off His Hand
How the Democrats Undercut John Murtha
November 26 / 27, 2005

Here we have one of the most widely derided presidents in the history of
the United States and a war abhorred by a majority of all Americans and
the Democrats have near zero traction as a credible party of opposition.
The sequence of events after Representative Jack Murtha's speech on
Capitol Hill on November 17 tells the story.

It truly was a great speech, as the Marine veteran (37 years in the US
Marine Corps, then 31 years in Congress) actually delivered it with
extempore additions to the prepared text handed out after his news

Listen to Murtha and you are hearing how the US commanders in Iraq
really see the situation. Murtha is trusted by the military and has
visited Iraq often. "Many say the Army is broken. Some of our troops are
on a third deployment. Recruitment is down even as the military has
lowered its standards. They expect to take 20 percent category 4, which is
the lowest category, which they said they'd never take. Much of our
ground equipment is worn out."

On Iraq's condition: "Oil production and energy production are below
prewar level. You remember they said that was going to pay for the war,
and it's below prewar level. Our reconstruction efforts have been
crippled by the security situation. Only $9 billion of $18 billion
appropriated for reconstruction has been spent. Unemployment is 60
percent. Clean water is scarce and they only spent $500 million of the
$2.2 billion appropriated for water projects.

"And, most importantly - this is the most important point  incidents
have increased from 150 a week to over 700 in the last year."

Then, amid his tears, came Murtha's sketches of war's consequences in
today's America:

     "Now, let me personalize this thing for you. I have a young fellow in
my district who was blinded and he lost his foot. And they did everything
they could for him at Walter Reed, then they sent him home.  His father
was in jail; he had nobody at home - imagine this: young kid that age -
22, 23 years old - goes home to nobody. V.A. did everything they could do
to help him. He was reaching out, so they sent him - to make sure that he
was blind, they sent him to John Hopkins. John Hopkins started to send him
bills. Then the collection agency started sending bills. Imagine, a young
person being blinded, without a foot, and he's getting bills from a
collection agency."

And finally, Murtha's call for rapid pullout of US troops from Iraq capped
by one of the most amazing resumes of political reality ever administered
to an audience on Capitol Hill:

     "I believe we need to turn Iraq over to the Iraqis. I believe before
the Iraqi elections, scheduled for mid-December, the Iraqi people and the
emerging government must be put on notice: The United States will
immediately redeploy - immediately redeploy. All of Iraq must know that
Iraq is free, free from a United States occupation. And I believe this
will send a signal to the Sunnis to join the political process."

This was no wimp. This was a 73-year old Marine veteran with Purple Hearts
and Bronze Star, one of the Armed Forces' most constant supporters. What
more credible advocate a speedy end to an unpopular war could the
Democrats ever hope for?

Barely had he stopped speaking before the halls of Congress echoed with
the squeaks Democrats whimpering with panic as they skipped clear of
Murtha's shadow. Emboldening the White House to savage Murtha, John Kerry
hurried before the cameras of MSNBC to frag the Pennsylvania congressman
and to tell Chris Mathews how he, John Kerry, had a better plan, involving
something in the nature of a schedule for withdrawal possibly limping into
action in 2006.

Nancy Pelosi, the Democrats' leader in the House abruptly retreated from a
scheduled pres conference to express support for Murtha. Scenting
weakness, the Republicans put up a resolution calling for withdrawal now.
Democratic panic escalated into pell mell retreat, shouting back over
their shoulders that they weren't going to fall for such a dirty
Republican trick. Why not? What better chance will they get to go on
record against the war? In the end just three Democrats (Cynthia McKinney
of Georgia, Jose Serrano of New York, and Robert Wexler of Florida voted
for immediate withdrawal and six voted "present").  McKinney put it

"I will not vote to give one more soldier to the George W. Bush/Dick
Cheney war machine. A vote on war is the single most important vote we can
make in this House. I understand the feelings of my colleagues on both
sides of the aisle who might be severely conflicted by the decision we
have to make here tonight. But the facts of US occupation of Iraq are also
very clear."

They may be clear to McKinney, and Murtha and 60 per cent of the American
people, but not to the three Democratic Senators interested in the
presidential nomination in 2008. Even after Murtha's lead Russell Feingold
continued to mumble about the "target date" for withdrawal being 2006, as
does Kerry. For her part Hillary Clinton announced at the start of
Thanksgiving week that an immediate U.S. withdrawal from Iraq would be "a
big mistake" which "would cause more problems for us in America. It will
matter to us if Iraq totally collapses into civil war, if it becomes a
failed state"

The importance of Murtha's speech was that it vaulted over these
laboriously prudent schedules into the reality of what is actually
happening in Iraq. As his military sources in Iraq most certainly urged
him to point out, the main fuel for the Sunni Arab insurgency is foreign
occupation. So long as it continues the resistance is likely to go on. .
The idea that the Sunni taking part in the election somehow means a shift
from military action is also baloney.

Would there actually be a power vacuum if US withdrew, followed by civil
war, as is widely argued in the U.S.? The Sunni can't take Baghdad. They
can't penetrate the main Kurdish and Shia areas. How exactly is the US
military preventing a civil war at the moment? The refusal of the Shia to
retaliate is the most important factor here and this is primarily the
result of Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani standing firmly against it.

Now suppose Sistani calls for a withdrawal? Then the US and Britain will
have little choice but to go, probably over an 18 month period. This very
week, incidentally, a gathering in Cairo of Sunni, Shiite, and Kurdish
leaders (under the auspices of the Arab League) called for a timetable for
US withdrawal and also said that Iraq's opposition had a "legitimate right
to resistance." The Sunni are not going to stop fighting while the
occupation continues. The quid pro quo for the US leaving would presumably
be a ceasefire by the Sunni and an end to suicide bombing attacks.

All those Democratic Party withdrawal dates are predicated on the idea
that Iraqi army security forces will be built up and can take over. This
scenario is as unrealistic as calls to "internationalize" the occupying
force. All the evidence is that only an agreement on the departure of
the US will lead to an end to the armed resistance, just as Murtha said.
The idea that the Sunni taking part in the election somehow means a
shift from military action is also baloney. It is clearly an 'Armalite
and ballot box' strategy.

[Nevertheless, how many will be on their knees casting a useless vote for
Hillary in 2008? Might they not have something better to do, starting now?

--------19 of 22---------

When Democrats Ask For Money
by Susan H. Pitcairn
Common Dreams

It happens daily: Letters and emails arrive unbidden, one after the next,
urgently seeking money for various Democratic causes, great and small.
Message after message warns me of what will happen if Democrats fail to
win in 2006.

Because I share these concerns, I have opened my wallet time and again.

Yet never do these appeals mention the one peril that most endangers
Democrats, as well democracy - corrupt elections.

Ever since Bush's alleged victories challenged by countless election
watchers and analysts, I have doggedly sent dozens of messages to
Congress, urging an end to "black box voting." I have joined protests and
I have passed petitions. The response? Little but thundering silence,
especially from those who should be leading this charge - the likes of
John Kerry, Howard Dean, Harry Reid, Nancy Pelosi, Al Gore, Jimmy Carter
and Hillary Clinton.

Finally, I have seen the light. It is time to send the ultimate message -
no more money for Democrats until they speak out united for serious
election reform.

Yes, this is a risky strategy. But it is riskier still to allow
privatization of our votes and a gaping security hole in our election
process to destroy our hard-won democracy. Even so, I tremble a bit as I
invite other party faithfuls to join me in the unthinkable: to cut off
support to those who may be our only hope in dangerous times.

So from now on, when Democrats ask for money, this is what I will send.
This is what I will slip in their pre-paid envelope. This is what I will
paste into the email comments box.

Furthermore, I will spread the word - until Democratic leaders finally
get the word.

     To the Honorable Governor Howard Dean, Chair of the Democratic
National Committee, all state and county Democratic Party Chairs, Move On,
Emily's List, DCCC, DSCC,, all Democratic Party
fund-raising groups, Friends of John Kerry and all Democrats who do not
champion voting rights:

     Dear Fellow Democrats,

     Over my lifetime, I have been a loyal supporter and have donated a
considerable amount of time and money to the Democratic Party.

     Sadly, however, I have reached a crossroads. From this day onward, I
will no longer offer my financial support to Democratic fund-raising
groups until the party's leaders seriously address the single most
important issue facing our country: electronic election fraud. For, in the
brave new world of electronic vote counting, it is apparently one thing
for candidates to win the people's vote - and another to win office.

     Why should we Democrats continue to waste our time and money playing
a game stacked against us? It is entirely immoral, and should become
entirely illegal, that partisan Republicans control each of the three
private corporations now recording or tabulating the overwhelmingly
majority of America's votes.

     The histories of such companies are tainted with criminal convictions
and bribes to election officials ( Some say
we can overcome this problem if we win by an unmistakable margin. But even
"big wins" can no longer save us; three recent election reform referenda
in Ohio were mysteriously "defeated" with unchallenged discrepencies of as
much as thirty percent from polls conducted just one day prior to the

     Concerns about electronic vote counting fraud have been expressed for
years. As far back as 1988, an article in the November 7th New Yorker
magazine warned that it was inevitable that a presidential election would
someday be stolen, given the security holes in electronic voting. Since
the debacle of the 2000 election, and the subsequent counterproductive
passage of HAVA in 2002, such concerns have grown exponentially.

     Perhaps many of our leaders fear to tread where mainstream media will
not go. Yet, can any reasonable person doubt that the media's silence may
reflect the fact that they are mostly no longer independent? That their
owners are also heavily invested in defense, energy, and other industries
favoring Republican policies?

     Many citizens have tried repeatedly to call the Democratic Party's
attention to this issue, which we feel trumps all others. Yet we have
gotten extraordinarily little support from party leaders, including John
Kerry and Al Gore, whose likely victories were sabotaged by corrupt
election processes, including electronic vote recording and counting based
on secret source software and easily-hacked systems. Not to mention voter
suppression and "the usual dirty tricks."

     Privately, Senator Kerry and Mr. Gore may share this view, but
publicly they ignore or even refute it. A recent Kerry aide disavowal to
"Raw Story" was my personal "last straw: on this issue. Senator Kerry was
not even aware of the recent GAO report which confirmed discrepencies in
vote tabulation in Ohio in the 2004 election.

     I appreciate the brave few who challenged the 2004 election last
January in Congress and will continue to support such leaders. And I
appreciate that Howard Dean raised concerns about electronic voting during
his presidential campaign. But as DNC chair, his many messages to party
members have been oddly silent on this key issue.

     All told, this sad state of affairs has left many of us confused and
discouraged. We are left only to speculate, our letters and concerns
unanswered. Are they being threatened, or bribed? Are they all "in it
together"? Are they asleep, or simply in denial? Do they just lack the
courage and leadership necessary to confront this national disgrace? Or
"all of the above"?

     I am left with little recourse but to withdraw my financial support
for Democratic groups, and to encourage fellow Democrats do the same,
until the Democratic Party at every level publicly challenges this issue
with a united and unmistakable voice: NO MORE ELECTION FRAUD.

     No more paperless voting. No more unchallenged exit poll
discrepancies. No more secret source partisan-controlled software counting
the majority of American votes. And, if need be, a return to paper
ballots, hand-counted, in public view, like in Europe.

     Only at such a point, will I again pledge my full support to the
Democratic Party. Meanwhile, I WILL support individuals of any party who
fully support the rights of voters to have their votes counted.

     Democracy first, Democrats second.

Susan H. Pitcairn (susan [at] lives in Oregon.

--------20 of 22---------

From: David Boyce <dboyce [at]>

This is from pages 68-69 of Richard Heinberg's 2005 book Powerdown,
Options and Actions for a Post-Carbon World.

Who are the Neocons?

Neoconservatism is the intellectual offspring of Leo Strauss (1899-1973),
a Jewish scholar who fled Hitler's Germany and taught political science at
the University of Chicago.  According to Shadia Drury in Leo Strauss and
the American Right, (Griffin, 1999), Strauss advocated an essentially
Machiavellian approach to governance.  He believed that:

 * A leader must perpetually deceive those being ruled.
 * Those who lead are accountable to no overarching system of morals, only
to the right of the superior to rule the inferior.
 * Religion is the force that binds society together, and is therefore the
tool by which the ruler can manipulate the masses (any religion will do).
 * Secularism in society is to be suppressed, because it leads to critical
thinking and dissent.
 * A political system can be stable only if it is united against an
external threat, and that if no real threat exists, one should be

Drury writes that "In Stauss's view, the trouble with liberal society is
that it dispenses with noble lies and pious frauds.  It tries to find
society on secular rational foundations."

Among Strauss's students was Paul Wolfowitz, one of the leading hawks in
the US Defense Department, who urged the invasion of Iraz;
second-generation students include Newt Gingrich, Clarence Thomas, Irving
Kristol, William Bennett, John Ashcroft, and Michael Ledeen.

Ledeen, a fellow at the American Enterprise Institute and author of
Machiavelli on Modern Leadership: Why Machiavelli's Iron Rules are as
Timely and Important Today as Five Centuries Ago (1999), is a policy
advisor (via Karl Rove) to the Bush administration.  His fascination with
Machiavelli seems to be deep and abiding, and appears to be shared by his
fellow neocons.  "In order to achieve the most noble accomplishments,"
writes Ledeen, "the leader may have to 'enter into evil'.  This is the
chilling insight that has made Machiavelli so feared, admired, and
challenging.  It is why we're drawn to him still..."

Machiavelli's books, The Prince and The Discourses, constituted manuals on
amassing political power; they have inspired kings and tyrants, including
Mussolini, Hitler, Lenin, and Stalin.  The leader, according to
Machiavelli, must pretend to do good even as he is actually doing the
opposite.  "Everyone sees what you appear to be, few feel what you are,
and those few will not dare to oppose themselves to the many, who have the
majesty of the state to defend them.... Let a prince therefore aim at
conquering and maintaining the state, and the means will always be judged
honorable and praised by everyone, for the vulgar is always taken by
appearances..."  It is to Machiavelli that we owe the dictum that "the end
justifies the means."

In her essay "The Despoiling of America," investigative reporter Katherine
Yurica explains how a dominate faction of the Christian Right, which she
calls "dominionism," has found common cause with the neoconservative
movement.  Dominionism arose in the 1970's as a politicized religious
reaction to communism and secular humanism.  One of its foremost
spokespersons, Pat Robertson (religious broadcaster, former presidential
candidate, and founder of the Christian Coalition), has for decades
patiently and relentlessly put forward the views to his millions of daily
television viewers that God intends His followers to rule the world on His
behalf.  Yurica describes dominionism as a Machiavellian perversion of
Christianity.  For the Christian right, neoconservatives like George W.
Bush and John Ashcroft can do no wrong, because they are among God's
elect.  All is fair in the holy war against atheists, secular humanists,
Muslims, and liberals.

--------21 of 22--------

Scientists Identify Corporate Structure as Bad for Public Health

sent by Pesticide Action Network, North America (PANNA) - Nov 27, 2005
Intl Journal of Occupational & Environmental Health - Nov 15, 2005

Corporate power is a major cause of health problems, according to the
October/December 2005 special issue of the International Journal of
Occupational and Environmental Health. Contributions to the issue reveal
how corporate structure results in pressure to influence science and place
the public at risk from pesticides, lead, asbestos, toxic municipal sewage
sludge, and other harmful substances.

"Occupational and environmental health diseases are in fact an outcome of
a pervasive system of corporate priority setting, decision making, and
influence," state guest editors David Egilman and Susanna Rankin Bohme.
"This system produces disease because political, economic, regulatory, and
ideological norms prioritize values of wealth and profit over human health
and environmental well-being."

Skip Spitzer, Program Coordinator at PAN North America and a contributing
author to the journal notes that, "In market economies, private
corporations play such a decisive role in the economic sphere that they
are often able to secure more rights than people. Corporations deeply
influence politics, law, media, public relations, science, research,
education and other institutions. It's no surprise that corporate self
interest routinely supersedes social and environmental welfare."

In his article "A Systemic Approach to Occupational and Environmental
Health", Spitzer describes how corporations are part of a "structure of
harm", meaning that the very way in which corporations are structured
produces social and environmental problems and undermines reform. The
pressure to compete in the marketplace and create demand for their
products creates incentives for corporations to shape the political
system, the mass media, and science for commercial ends. Corporations use
this power to avoid taking responsibility for the larger environmental and
social impacts of their actions (or "externalities"), including the public
health impacts of developing dangerous new technologies. Spitzer quotes
Reagan administration economist Robert Monks describing the corporation as
"an externalizing machine, the same way that a shark is a killing machine
- no malevolence...just something designed with sublime efficiency for
self-preservation, which it accomplishes without any capacity to factor in
the consequences to others."

This "structure of harm" creates incentives for corporations to seek
political influence over institutions designed to protect and serve the
public good. Corporations often use this power to influence scientific
debates so as to avoid regulation and litigation. "Science is a key part
of this system," note Egilman and Bohme, "there is a substantial tradition
of manipulation of evidence, data, and analysis ultimately designed to
maintain favorable conditions for industry at both material and
ideological levels." Independent scientists whose findings counter
corporate interests often face pitched battles to obtain funding, publish
their research, and gain academic tenure.

The corporate "structure of harm" undermines health protections not only
domestically, but also by influencing the international agreements and
treaties that shape the global economy. In her article "Who's Afraid of
National Laws?", Erika Rosenthal, a frequent consultant to PAN in North,
Central and South America, identifies how pesticide corporations are using
trade agreements to block proposed bans on pesticides identified as the
worst occupational health hazards in Central America. Through privileged
access to closed-door negotiations, agrichemical corporations inserted
deregulatory mechanisms into the draft Central American Customs Union and
the Central American Free Trade Agreement. These agreements undermine
health-based national pesticide registration requirements, weaken health
ministries' role in pesticide control, block marketing of cheaper and less
toxic pesticides, and have a chilling effect on future pesticide
regulation. Rosenthal argues that as long as corporations have privileged
access to trade negotiations and civil society is excluded, the resulting
agreements will benefit special interests at the expense of public health.

The editors conclude that corporate corruption of science is widespread
and touches many aspects of our lives, as indicated by the range of
articles in the issue. In "Genetic Engineering in Agriculture and
Corporate Engineering in Public Debate", Rajeev Patel, Robert Torres, and
Peter Rosset analyze Monsanto's efforts to convince the public of the
safety of genetically modified crops. Other articles describe how industry
pressure on government agencies such as EPA have influenced cancer
research and resulted in approving toxic municipal sewage sludge as crop

Corporate corruption of science represents a real threat to the health and
well-being of people and to the environment the world over. "The negative
social impacts of corporate structures deserve a concerted response on the
part of conscientious public health researchers," note Egilman and Bohme.
Spitzer sees this analysis as a call for researchers to join movements
working for fundamental change of corporate structure and power. "We need
to build bigger, more integrated social movements with the popular
wherewithal to make deep change," he states. "This means combining
multiple issues, connecting local work nationally and internationally, and
building long-term change goals into action for more immediate change."

-Pesticide Action Network North America

--------22 of 22x--------

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