|Progressive Calendar 11.12.06||<– Date –> <– Thread –>|
|From: David Shove (shove001tc.umn.edu)|
|Date: Sun, 12 Nov 2006 06:10:29 -0800 (PST)|
P R O G R E S S I V E C A L E N D A R 11.12.06 1. Atheists/rights 11.12 1pm 2. CO status 11.12 1pm 3. Peace march 11.12 1pm Duluth MN 4. Ground Truth/f 11.12 1:30pm 5. MN FOR/coffee 11.12 2pm 6. WAMM awards 11.12 3pm 7. KFAI's Indian 11.12 4pm 8. MEinforcement 11.12 5pm 9. Vets4peace 11.12 6pm 10. Babylon/film 11.12 7pm 11. Mn Fed housing 11.13 9:30am many MN locations 12. US empire 101 11.13 5:30pm 13. Sustainability 11.13 5:30pm 14. Peace church 11.13 6:30pm 15. Spirit progs 11.13 7pm 16. Dakota walk 11.13 7pm? 17. Joshua Frank - You call this a sweep? Post-electoral deliriums 18. John V Walsh - The war loses, voters win. Rahm's losers 19. Gary Leupp - Keep Congress feet to fire; Dems can be Neocons, too 20. Hill/Richie - A pro-democracy agenda for a new Congress 21. Alan Maas - The repudiation of one-party rule 22. ed - Right and wrong (poem) --------1 of 22-------- From: "jimpwright [at] juno.com" <jimpwright [at] juno.com> Subject: Atheists/rights 11.12 1pm Atheists For Human Rights atheistsforhumanrights.org Sunday, November 12 1-2pm. Southdale Public Library, 7001 York Ave. S., Edina, Mn. Michael Newdow: Why Religion and Government Don't Mix Michael Newdow discusses his landmark Supreme Court battle to remove the words. "under god." from the Pledge of Allegiance. There may also be a discussion with a person supporting the "under god" wording (as yet unconfirmed.) --------2 of 22-------- From: Charles Underwood <charleyunderwood [at] hotmail.com> Subject: CO status 11.12 1pm Sunday, 11/12, 1 to 3:30 pm, Vets for Peace classes to prepare families for conscientious objector status, basement of St Stephens school building, 2123 Clinton Ave S, Mpls. $10/family. RSVP Kim at 612-721-6908. --------3 of 22-------- From: Charles Underwood <charleyunderwood [at] hotmail.com> Subject: Peace march 11.12 1pm Duluth Mn Sunday, 11/12, 1 pm in Duluth, march from the Rose Garden (London Road next to Leif Erickson Park) to Portland Square, with speakers from Military Families Speak Out, Wisc National Guard, various vets and poets. www.myspace.com/nawc --------4 of 22-------- From: Lydia Howell <lhowell [at] visi.com> Subject: Ground Truth/f 11.12 1:30pm The powerful, highly rated film, "The Ground Truth," will be shown at the First Unitarian Society, 900 Mount Curve, on Sunday November 12th, 1:30 PM. This film traces the lives of Iraq vets from the day of swearing in to their return to civilian life and the struggles of readjustment. Sponsored by the Peace Committte of the First Unitarian Society, the purpose of this film is to help military families and all citizens to better understand what those who have served in Iraq or Afghanistan may have experienced. Additional information, Carole Rydberg, 763-546-5368. -- From: Carole Rydberg <carydberg [at] comcast.net> Last night [some weeks ago -ed] our NWN4P screening of "The Ground Truth" was very successful ... at least 80 people came and all want to do more to spread the word. I have three copies of the DVD now (Best Buy sells it for $9.99, it is on Netflix, and can be purchased from the web site ... the latter includes a donotion toward helmets) and we are passing these from person to person like a "hot potato". EVERY peace activist is advised to see this film as soon as possible and then pass the word to others. Screenings can be listed on "The Ground Truth" site. The next screening in the Twin Cities area that I am aware of is at the First Unitarian Society, 900 Mt. Curve (behind the Walker) on Sunday November 12th at 1:30 PM. Hope there will be many others before that date, however. --------5 of 22-------- From: "Don,Rachel Christensen" <chris385 [at] umn.edu> Subject: MN FOR/coffee 11.12 2pm Join us for Free Trade coffee and dessert and the music of "Art and Henry" at the Annual Celebration of the Minnesota FOR. Activities will include presentation of our "Peacemakers of the Year" award to the Community of St. Martin, and a Conversation Cafe on the question, "What makes a peace community meaningful to you?" On view will be a special showing of paintings on "War and Peace" by local artist, Cara Hochhalter. SUNDAY, NOV. 12 - 2:00-5:00 PM MACALESTER-PLYMOUTH UNITED CHURCH ST PAUL (Lincoln and Macalester streets, west side of Macalester College campus) --------6 of 22-------- From: wamm <wamm [at] mtn.org> Subject: WAMM awards 11.12 3pm Vincent L. Hawkinson 2006 Peace and Justice Awards: WAMM members Marie and John Braun of Minneapolis and Ralph and Kay Hilgendorf of St. Paul Sunday, November 12, 3:00 p.m. St. Joan of Arc Church, 4537 Third Avenue South, Minneapolis. Two activist couples have been selected to receive the 2006 Honorary Awards of the Vincent L. Hawkinson Foundation for Peace and Justice. Long-time WAMM member and former Board member Marie Braun, who together with John Braun of Minneapolis, are widely known for their opposition to the deadly sanctions and war on and occupation of Iraq, and long-time WAMM members Ralph and Kay Hilgendorf of St. Paul, familiar figures at the Lake Street/Marshall Avenue Bridge Vigil to end the war and occupation of Iraq, are being recognized for their lifelong involvement in peace and social justice causes. Selected annually by the Foundation, the honorary awards and Hawkinson scholarships are aimed at furthering the commitment to peace and justice of the late Rev. Vincent L. Hawkinson, who served as pastor of Grace University Lutheran Church in Minneapolis for 30 years. The presentation is open to the public. A reception follows. --------7 of 22-------- From: Chris Spotted Eagle <chris [at] spottedeagle.org> Subject: KFAI's Indian 11.12 4pm KFAI's Indian Uprising for November 12th SANDRA WHITE HAWK (Sicangu Lakota), Executive Director, First Nations Orphan Association. The mission of the FNOA is to unite Native American (First Nation and Aboriginal) adoptees, fostered individuals and their families with professionals, other adoptees, community spiritual leaders and traditional elders. http://www.geocities.com/fnoac/ As early as 1890, thousands of Indian children were forcibly removed from their Indian homes. Between the years 1941 and 1978 it is estimated that 35 percent of all Indian children were removed from homes and placed in orphanages, white foster homes and adopted into white families. "The time has come to heal the wound of this forced assimilation" said White Hawk. An adoptee: "I am 23 years old, adopted when I was six months. These past years I felt as though I had no real identify. Whites donšt like me because I am Indian. Mexicans don't like me because I am Indian. The worse thing, though, is that I don't fit in with the Indians, either, because I was not raised in the culture and don't know the ways of the tribe." Another said, "Adoption causes such intense inner pain that you do anything just to get away from it. No one understands you, you are different, and there's no one to talk to. You withdraw into yourself, keep it all inside. That's how I got into trouble with alcohol. It was pain medicine." November is National Adoption Month and November 18th is National Adoption Day. There will be a Midwest book launch of Outsiders Within: Writing on Transracial Adoption (see attached) at the Barbara Barker Center for Dance, 500 21st Avenue South, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, Saturday, November 18th, 6:00-9:00 p.m. Event is co-sponsored by the First Nations Orphans Association and The University of Minnesota to include the Consortium for the Study of the Asias, the Institute for Global Studies, American Studies, Asian American Studies. Program will include readings/commentary, a dance and song featuring Ananya Dance Theatre and a ceremony. Emcee is Jerry Dearly (Lakota). Event is free and open to the public. * * * Indian Uprising a one-half hour Public & Cultural Affairs program is for and by Indigenous people broadcast each Sunday at 4:00 p.m. over KFAI 90.3 FM Minneapolis and 106.7 FM St. Paul. Producer and host is Chris Spotted Eagle. KFAI Fresh Air Radio, www.kfai.org, is located at 1808 Riverside Avenue, Minneapolis MN 55454, 612-341-3144. --------8 of 22-------- From: Lydia Howell <lhowell [at] visi.com> Subject: MEinforcement 11.12 5pm For immediate release: DR. (not really) Matt Peiken reads and signs his book "Positive MEinforcement," 5PM Sunday, November 12 at Magers and Quinn. Spoofing more than two dozen best-selling self "help" books and their celebrated authors, Positive MEinforcement teaches you to lie to yourself, stalk success, sweat the small stuff, dodge death and make every day all about YOU! "Dr." Matt Peiken lives in Saint Paul and is on staff at the Pioneer Press where he is a reporter and writes unsigned editorials. He read/performed Positive MEinforcement at this year's Fringe Festival. For more information, contact: David Unowsky 612-822-4611 davidu [at] magersandquinn.com Author's website: www.mattpeiken.com MAGERS AND QUINN BOOKSELLERS 3038 HENNEPIN AVENUE SOUTH MINNEAPOLIS MN 55408 612-822-4611 www.magersandquinn.com --------9 of 22-------- From: Charles Underwood <charleyunderwood [at] hotmail.com> Subject: Vets4peace 11.12 6pm Sunday, 11/12 (and every 2nd Sunday), 6 to 8:30 pm, Veterans for Peace chapter 27 monthly meeting, VFP office, St Stephens School basement, 2130 Clinton Ave S, Mpls. 612-821-9141. --------10 of 22-------- From: "Krista Menzel (Merriam Park Neighbors for Peace)" <web [at] mppeace.org> Subject: Babylon/film 11.12 7pm Film screening with filmmaker, David Martinez: 500 Miles to Babylon Sunday, November 12, 2006 7:00 p.m. St. John's Episcopal Church, <http://maps.google.com/maps?oi=map&q=60+Kent+Street,+Saint+Paul,+MN>60 Kent Street, St. Paul Produced by Graffiti Films, 500 Miles to Babylon is a one-hour documentary film about Iraq under U.S. occupation. Narrated by filmmaker David Martinez, using footage shot in Iraq during the past year threaded with graphically animated archival sequences to provide historic context, the film addresses the current war not simply as a conflict over petroleum profits or a scheme to fill a company's coffers, but as part of a larger American imperial project. Through impromptu interviews, glimpses of daily life, still photographs, and footage of car-bombs, demonstrations, night-time graffiti artists, Sufi rituals, and the celebrations following Saddam's capture, 500 Miles To Babylon reveals the complex situation in contemporary Iraq through a personal lens. Far from being a simple anti-war movie, 500 Miles attempts to illustrate the terrible complexity of a people brutalized by a dictatorship, and the catastrophic results when that system is changed overnight by shortsighted military means. Cost: A minimum donation of $5 per person is requested, but not required. Sponsored by: <http://www.mppeace.org>Merriam Park Neighbors for Peace and <http://groups.yahoo.com/group/crocushillpeace/>Crocus Hill/West 7th Neighbors for Peace More Information: Krista Menzel: (651) 641-7592 Anne Benson: (651) 647-0580 E-mail: <mailto:info [at] mppeace.org>info [at] mppeace.org Minnesota Neighbors for Peace Web Site: http://www.mnneighbors4peace.org Graffiti Films Web Site: http://www.graffitifilms.com Subject: Babylon/film 11.12 7pm --------11 of 22-------- From: Barb Jacobs <Bjacobs [at] mhponline.org> Subject: Mn Fed housing 11.13 9:30am many MN locations MINNESOTA FEDERAL HOUSING ACTION COALITION STATEWIDE BRIEFING SESSION WITH CONGRESSIONAL HOUSING STAFFERS November 13, 2006 9:30-11am PLEASE NOTE: THE CALL WILL BEGIN PROMPTLY AT 9:30 AM. State-wide virtual briefing session to inform Minnesota's Congressional delegation about the impact proposed federal housing policies will have on Minnesota. Groups of constituents across the state will participate from one of sites listed to the left. The topics addressed will include the HUD budget, Public Housing funding, Section 8 vouchers, and USDA/Rural Development.To participate, simply join us at one of the following sites: Bemidji, BI-County Community Action Programs 2529 15th ST NW Bemidji MN, 56601 Duluth, Northland Foundation Conference Room 202 West Superior St. Suite 600 Duluth, MN 55802 Elbow Lake, West Central MN Community Action Council 411 Industrial Park Blvd. Elbow Lake, MN 56531 Moorhead, Clay County Family Service Center 715 11th Street North Moorhead, MN 56560 Rochester, First Homes 2200 2nd St. SW, Ste 300 Rochester, MN 55902 Mankato, Blue Earth River Room Mankato City Hall 10 Civic Center Plaza Mankato, MN 56001 St. Cloud, Catholic Charities Al Loehr Studio Apartments 405512th St N. St.Cloud, MN 56301 Willmar, Heartland Comm. Action 409 19th Ave SW Willmar, MN 56201 Virginia, Arrowhead Economic Opportunity Agency 702 Third Avenue South Virginia, MN 55792 Spring Lake Park (North), Rise Inc 8406 Sunset Road NE Spring Lake Park, MN 55432 Stillwater (East), Wash. Cty. Govt. Center, Rm 520 14949 62nd St. North Stillwater, MN 55082 Bloomington (Southwest), Cornerstone 1000 East 80th Street Bloomington, MN 55420 Minneapolis, The Church Center 122 West Franklin Ave Minneapolis, MN 55404St. Paul, Community Stabilization Project 671 B Selby Avenue St. Paul, MN 55104 Own the Housing Issues!Be a part of a briefing session that will include people throughout Minnesota, as well as staff members from the offices of Minnesota's Representatives and Senators.By participating in this call, you can: --Communicate and develop relationships with your congressmen and women and their staffers --Become active in the legislative process --Be part of a state-wide campaign designed to emphasize the importance of housing as a federal issue --Show that affordable housing is important to you To participate, simply reply to this e-mail and include the following information: Location from which you plan to participate Organization Email Name Address Phone Please RSVP ASAP! E-mail: davey [at] mnhomelesscoalition.org Fax to 612-870-9085Questions: call 612-879-9437 --------12 of 22-------- From: Charles Underwood <charleyunderwood [at] hotmail.com> Subject: US empire 101 11.13 5:30pm Monday, 11/13, 5:30 to 8 pm, free class "American Empire 101" with U of M prof Richard Martinez, Jack Pine Center, 2815 E Lake, Mpls. 612-624-6005. --------13 of 22-------- From: Karen Engelsen <Karen [at] mtn.org> Subject: Sustainability 11.13 5:30pm Sustainability and the Natural Step Framework: A Win-Win-Win for Business, Our Community and the Earth This Seminar provides an innovative, successful, and cost-effective approach for becoming environmentally and socially responsible based on consensus and systems thinking. Its purpose is to present a common framework comprised of easily-understood, scientifically-based principles that can serve as a compass to guide society toward a just and sustainable future. Learn to create positive, shared solutions, while becoming environmentally and socially responsible. In 2 Parts: Nov 13 & Nov 15 6:15-9:30 pm 5:30 pm Nov 13 Registration and Optional Dinner 5:30 pm Nov 15 Optional Dinner and Tour of St. Joan's Award-Winning Green Building Based on the Natural Step Framework St. Joan of Arc Church, 4537 Third Ave. S, Minneapolis RSVP Requested and Advanced Registration Discount: $95 ($75 for contributing members of Alliance and other sponsors) if payment received by Monday November 6. $10 additional after and $20 at the door if space is available. There are a limited number of scholarships available. If you can't come to the second session you can come another time. Fee includes all resource materials. Contact: Alliance for Sustainability, 612-331-1099, info [at] afors.org; www.afors <http://www.afors/> .org Presenter: Terry Gips is an economist, ecologist, and author of Breaking the Pesticide Habit and The Humane Consumer and Producer Guide. Terry is one of the first US NSF trainers (independent), President of the Alliance for Sustainability and head of Sustainability Associates, a Minneapolis environmental consulting firm. He has served as a White House and Congressional aide, co-founder of the Sacramento Community Garden Program, Cargill economist, and Aveda Sustainability Director. He worked with St. Joan of Arc Church on their $2.7 million gorgeous green building renovation. Thank you for providing a path to sustainability that is not overwhelming, but completely possible for all of us to use in all aspects of our lives. -- Brenda Adams, Mediator - Resolution Consultant --------14 of 22-------- From: Charles Underwood <charleyunderwood [at] hotmail.com> Subject: Peace church 11.13 6:30pm Monday, 11/13, 6:30 to 8:30 pm, bimonthly potluck supper meeting of Every Church a Peace Church, with video of Fr. Emmanuel Charles McCarthy on the nonviolence of Jesus, Hamline United Methodist church, 1514 Englewood Ave, St Paul. http://groups.yahoo.com/group/MnECAPC/message/42 --------15 of 22-------- From: Charles Underwood <charleyunderwood [at] hotmail.com> Subject: Spirit progs 11.13 7pm Monday, 11/13 (and each month's 2nd Monday), 7 pm (socialize 6:30), Network of Spiritual Progressives including viewing and responding to presentations from the Washington gathering last May, Plymouth Congregational Church, 1900 Nicollet, Mpls. brucelissem [at] aol.com --------16 of 22-------- From: Diane J. Peterson <birch7 [at] comcast.net> Subject: Dakota walk 11.13 7pm? CONTACT: Diane Wilson 651-257-7214, dianewilson [at] frontiernet.net THIRD DAKOTA COMMEMORATIVE MARCH HONORS ANCESTORS WITH 150 MILE WALK Lower Sioux, MN-October 17, 2006--On November 7, 2006 Dakota people from the United States and Canada will begin a 150-mile long Commemorative March through southern Minnesota in honor of their ancestors who were forcibly removed from the Lower Sioux Agency to concentration camps at Mankato and Fort Snelling in November of 1862. For the Dakota this commemoration signifies an opportunity to remember and grieve for the suffering endured by their ancestors as well as to relate a perspective of the event which has rarely been told. At the close of the U.S-Dakota War of 1862, Dakota people surrendered to the United States believing they would be treated as prisoners of war. Instead, most of the men were shackled and tried by a military tribunal, which initially sentenced 306 of them to execution. On November 7, 1862, the remaining group, primarily women, children and elderly, were force-marched in a four-mile long procession from the Lower Sioux Agency to Fort Snelling. The condemned male prisoners were transported a day later to Mankato, where they awaited final news of their execution. On these journeys, the Dakota faced harsh conditions including sickness, cold, violence, and inadequate food supplies (usually thrown onto the ground from large lumber wagons). As they were paraded through the small towns in southern Minnesota, white settlers lined the streets to taunt and assault the defenseless Dakota, often assailing them with bricks, stones, clubs, rotten food, and even boiling water. Poignant and painful Dakota oral accounts detail the abuses suffered by the Dakota at the hands of angry mobs and soldiery. An unknown number of Dakota men, women, and children died along the way and knowledge about the fate of those bodies has yet to be recovered. After 38 of the condemned men were hanged the day after Christmas in 1862 in what remains the largest mass hanging in United States history, the other prisoners continued to suffer in the concentration camps through the winter of 1862-63. In late April of 1863 the condemned male prisoners were then shipped to a prison near Davenport, Iowa where they served an additional three years. Shortly thereafter, in early May, those from Fort Snelling were shipped down the Mississippi River to St. Louis, and then up the Missouri River to the Crow Creek Reservation in South Dakota. This ethnic cleansing of Dakota people from Minnesota was one part of the fulfillment of a larger policy of genocide. On September 9, 1862, Governor Alexander Ramsey declared that "The Sioux Indians of Minnesota must be exterminated or driven forever beyond the borders of the state." After the forced removal, bounties were placed on the scalps of Dakota people, eventually reaching as high as $200, and punitive expeditions were sent out in 1863 and 1864 to further insure that the Dakota would not return. While small numbers of Dakota began trickling back to Minnesota in the late 1880s, most Dakota people today remain in exile from their ancient homeland. Thus the Commemorative March occurring November 7-13, 2006 is not only an opportunity for the Dakota to honor their ancestors by remembering the suffering they endured in 1862, it is also an opportunity for Dakota reconciliation in their homeland of Minnesota Makoce (Land Where the Waters Reflect the Skies) 140 years later. The Third Commemorative March will commence from the Lower Sioux Reservation at 7:00 am November 7, 2006 and will continue through the communities of New Ulm, Henderson, Jordan, and Prior Lake, finally finishing at Fort Snelling on the evening of November 13. This event is supported by the Lower Sioux Reservation, Santee Sioux Nation of Nebraska, Southwest State University and numerous other individuals and organizations. Those who wish to support the Dakota may join them for all or part of their seven-day journey. For further information contact Dottie Whipple (507-627-1091) or Chris Mato Nunpa (320-564-4348), matonunpa [at] earthlink.net). --------17 of 22-------- You Call This a Sweep? Post-Electoral Deliriums By JOSHUA FRANK CounterPunch November 11 / 12, 2006 A progressive sweep? Hardly. John Nichols of The Nation claims that the Congressional Progressive Caucus (CPC) is now "crowded" as a result of last week's Midterm elections. Indeed the CPC will be growing by 8, which is almost on par with the growth of the conservative Blue Dog faction. Nick Burt and Joel Bleifuss of In These Times also chime in, writing that the Democratic takeover of the House was not a victory for centrist Democrats, but for left-leaning progressives. "CPC members will now be in a position to both promote progressive legislation and investigate administration wrongdoing." All of these sentiments are extremely misleading. If you combine the growth of New Democrats and Blue Dogs, two of the more conservative Democratic groups in the House, their numbers far surpass the numbers and growth of the CPC this year. "Do the math," Nichols challenges. "While the Blue Dogs are predicting that the membership of their caucus may grow from 37 to 44 members, and the New Democrats hope their membership will edge up from the mid-forties to over the 50 mark, the Progressives are looking at the prospect that their caucus -- the most racially and regionally diverse ideological grouping in the Congress -- could number more than 70 members once the new House is seated." Okay, let's do the math. According to the numbers Nichols provides, the Blue Dogs grew by 7 (it's actually going to be 8 or 9) seats and the New Democrats by at least 5. That's a total of 12 seats gained by conservative Democrats providing no overlap between the two groups. The PCP, on the contrary, gained only 8 seats. More importantly, the total number of seats now controlled by conservative Democrats in the House is well over 90, as compared to the CPC's 70. Who, then may I ask, outnumbers whom? Conservative Congressional Democrats do -- for they gained more House seats than progressives -- and of course, that's not taking into account that the majority of so-called progressive aren't even all that progressive to begin with. Especially when it comes our Middle East foreign policy. The majority of the CPC won't embrace Rep. Murtha's call for redeployment. And that's a redeployment to other areas in the region, not a plea to bring our troops home now. Like their leader Nancy Pelosi, the CPC's members also overwhelmingly support Israel and remain committed to the neo-con principles underlying Bush's war on terror -- as the majority of current members voted to support the invasion of Afghanistan. And take Rep. Pelosi's stance on Israel and Iran, "The greatest threat to Israel's right to exist, with the prospect of devastating violence, now comes from Iran," Pelosi lamented in a speech to the Israel-American lobby AIPAC in 2005. "For too long, leaders of both political parties in the United States have not done nearly enough to confront the Russians and the Chinese, who have supplied Iran as it has plowed ahead with its nuclear and missile technology." The push inside the Democratic Party in the House remains to the far right not the moderate-left, despite what The Nation and In These Times would have us believe. Joshua Frank is the author of Left Out! How Liberals Helped Reelect George W. Bush and edits http://www.BrickBurner.org --------18 of 22-------- The War Loses, Voters Win Rahm's Losers By JOHN V. WALSH CounterPunch November 11 / 12, 2006 Now that the Democrats have won the House overwhelmingly, the media is falling all over itself to proclaim Rahm Emanuel, head of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, and dearest friend of Israel, a boy genius. Even that congenital liar and close friend of Ariel Sharon, the ever tendentious NYT neocon William Safire, came out of retirement to hail Rahm as the Karl Rove of the Dems and to spin the election in various ways designed to keep Emanuel's influence alive. But is Rahm a boy genius or did the Dem establishments succeed despite him and in fact despite itself? After all, the Dem establishment, partisans of oil, empire and Israel, chose Rahm to lead them. Let's do the numbers to see how Rahm and his employers really did. On these electronic pages during the electoral season we have tracked the machinations and motives of Rahm Emanuel (1,2). Long ago Rahm chose 22 key races, open or Republican seats, where Dems might win. By any reasonable criteria, all the candidates chosen by Rahm, save perhaps for one, were pro-war as is Emanuel himself. In two cases Rahm had to put in considerable dollars and effort in the primaries to drive out antiwar candidates. He drove out Cegelis in Illinois's 6th CD, at the cost of one million dollars, in favor of Tammy ("Stay the course") Duckworth who lost in the general election. In California's 11th CD primary, Emanuel backed the prowar Steven Filson who lost to the antiwar candidate, Jerry McNerney, who went on to win in the general election. Looking at all 22 candidates hand-picked by Rahm, we find that 13 were defeated, and only 8 won! (3) (One is still undecided.) And remember that this was the year of the Democratic tsunami and that Rahm's favorites were handsomely financed by the DCCC. Tammy Duckworth, for example, was infused with $3 million and was backed in the primary by HRC, Barack Obama, John Kerry, etc. The Dems have picked up 28 seats so far, maybe more. So out of that 28, Rahm's choices accounted for 8! Since the Dems only needed 15 seats to win the House, Rahm's efforts were completely unnecessary. Had the campaign rested on Rahm's choices, there would have been only 8 or 9 new seats, and the Dems would have lost. In fact, Rahm's efforts were probably counterproductive for the Dems since the great majority of voters were antiwar and they were voting primarily on the issue of the war (60% according to CNN). But Rahm's candidates were not antiwar. So Rahm Emanuel nearly seized defeat from the jaws of victory. The Dems fully intended to pursue the war and the neocons thought that they had found a new host in the Dem party but the voters now perceive the Dems as antiwar and if they do not deliver, they will be damaged. After all Ralph Nader and Chuck Hagel are waiting in the wings for 2008. Either Emanuel is completely incompetent or else Emanuel is putting the interests of Israel ahead of Democratic victories. You decide. In either case why would he remain in a position of influence in the Dem party? A good question. A footnote to all this is the skullduggery behind the scenes in the campaign of one of Rahm's losers, Diane Farrell, who lost to Christopher Shays in CT. Farrell successfully passed herself off as antiwar in some quarters, getting the last minute endorsement of Katrina Vanden Heuvel at The Nation. But here is Farrell's "plan" for Iraq according to her web site: "Have Congress step up to its proper oversight role and get the administration to articulate and implement a transition plan in which the U.S. will reduce its role and begin to bring troops home. Set achievement benchmarks, rather than dates, for implementing such a pullback." Farrell does not support the Murtha or McGovern bills; she even rejects "timetables," and puts the onus of getting out of Iraq on "the administration" as opposed to Congressional action, namely her had she won. Why would The Nation support such a candidate? Was it simply incompetence, not doing one's homework? At the same time backers of Farrell, calling themselves Greens, managed to get the hard working and principled Green candidate in her district to withdraw on the basis of "private" and still secret assurances that Farrell would be antiwar in the end. Maybe we will now find out the nature of those assurances. One suspects that if Farrell had adopted a strong antiwar position and challenged her Green opponent that way, rather than conniving to force him out, she might have won the race. But then of course she would have lost Rahm's lucre. John V. Walsh can be reached at john.endwar [at] gmail.com. He welcomes more information on the machinations of Schumer or of Rahm, the loser. (1) http://www.counterpunch.com/walsh10142006.html (2) http://www.counterpunch.com/walsh10242006.html (3) Rahm's Losers: Darcy Burner (WA), Phyllis Busansky (FL), Francine Busby (CA), John Cranley (OH), Jill Derby (NV), Tammy Duckworth (IL), Diane Farrell (CT), Steve Filson (CA), Tessa Hafen (NV), Mary Jo Kilroy (OH), Ken Lucas (KY), Patsy Madrid (NM), Lois Murphy (PA). Winners: Brad Ellsworth (IN), Kirsten Gillibrand (NY), Baron Hill (IN), Ron Klein (FL), Harry Mitchell (AZ), Chris Murphy (CT), Heath Shuler (NC), Peter Welch, who was apparently antiwar (VT). Undecided: Joe Courtney (CT). --------19 of 22------- Keeping Congress's Feet to the Fire Democrats Can Be Neocons, Too By GARY LEUPP CounterPunch November 11 / 12, 2006 The great hope among Americans opposed to the war in Iraq is that the Democratic majority in both houses of Congress will now bring the troops home. But anyone paying attention realizes that the Democratic leadership, however much it's recently rejected, and even ridiculed, the Bush mantra "stay the course," is as committed as its Republican rivals to somehow "winning" in Iraq. So the best hope is that the Congress will now conduct tough investigations into what the administration's innumberable fabrications justifying the war and this will fan overall "bring 'em home" political pressure. The neocon-led Bush administration has indeed been dealt a body blow. It will surely announce some changes in Iraq policy in the near future, designed to mollify critics. It may trade some concessions on policy for political opponents' assurances that they won't aggressively pursue investigations into the pre-war campaign of lies. Thus far Pelosi has been at pains to say that "impeachment is off the table." Yesterday she denied ever calling Bush a liar. A mass movement could change her mind of course, and if John Conyers, the Michigan Democrat poised to take over chairmanship of the House Judiciary Committee, wants them we could see impeachment hearings, though last May he specifically denied that as chair of the committee Judiciary Committee, he "would immediately begin impeachment proceedings against President Bush. I will not do that," he declared. We must not underestimate the tenacity of those who feel that the post-9-11 environment still offers opportunities for the reconfiguration of the "Greater Middle East" in ways that could benefit U.S. imperialism in what the neocons boldly call the "New American Century." We should not underrate the neocons' ability to adjust to changing political circumstances. Many of them have been distancing themselves from Bush, including Richard Perle, himself a registered Democrat. Key neocons such as the Weekly Standard's Bill Kristol have criticized the Bush administration for being too soft in its war to conquer and shape the Muslim world; Kristol rounded on Rumsfeld and heaped praise on Joe Lieberman for his many services to the neocon cause. One Democrat to watch is Congressman Tom Lantos of California. He will probably succeed defeated Congressman James A. Leach of Iowa as chairman of the House International Relations Committee. In this instance, Lantos probably the most virulent Zionist in the entire Congress -- is by far the more dangerous of the two. In a detailed statement in November 2004, Leach opposed the use of military force against Iran. He voted against the "Iran Freedom and Support Act," which allocates funding for "regime change" in Iran. Liberal Democrat Lantos on the other hand cosponsored the act, and is a leading advocate of sanctions. Lantos enthusiastically supported the first Gulf War, and voted to authorize the second one. He was a big supporter of Israel's latest war on Lebanon, and has vowed to Israel's Prime Minister Ehud Olmert to block aid to Lebanon until the latter agrees to international troops on its border with Syria. He wants U.S. intervention in Sudan. The neocons could ask for no more solid ally than Tom Lantos. And he is by no means alone in this prospective role among the Democratic victors in the midterm elections. At Princeton in January, Hillary Clinton criticized the Bush administration for being too soft on Iran. "I believe we lost critical time in dealing with Iran because the White House chose to downplay the threats and to outsource the negotiations," she declared. "I don't believe you face threats like Iran or North Korea by outsourcing it to others and standing on the sidelines." Sen. Evan Bayh of Indiana is another leading Democrat who wants a more hawkish stance towards Iran. The Democrats could be pushed to accept some strategic retreats from the neocon game plan. [After all, neocons were mostly Democrats in the first place, before they swerved into Reagan's ranks in the late 1970s. Editors.] Certainly corporate America is divided about how to proceed, with some indeed counseling a "cut and run" strategy simply because it means cutting losses. But the Democrats could also, having inherited a war, decide to keep it and expand it in their own fashion, claiming to do so with greater wisdom and competence than bungling Bush was ever able to do. It could go either way. Those both antiwar and jubilant in the wake of the Democrats' glorious victory should resolve to keep the victors' feet to the fire. Gary Leupp is Professor of History at Tufts University, and Adjunct Professor of Comparative Religion. He is the author of Servants, Shophands and Laborers in in the Cities of Tokugawa Japan; Male Colors: The Construction of Homosexuality in Tokugawa Japan; and Interracial Intimacy in Japan: Western Men and Japanese Women, 1543-1900. He is also a contributor to CounterPunch's merciless chronicle of the wars on Iraq, Afghanistan and Yugoslavia, Imperial Crusades. He can be reached at: gleupp [at] granite.tufts.edu --------20 of 22-------- A Pro-Democracy Agenda for a New Congress by Steven Hill and Rob Richie Saturday, November 11, 2006 CommonDreams.org With Democrats moving into control of Congress for the first time in a dozen years, one means to build faith with voters would be seeking policies designed to improve democracy within Congress and elections in the United States. Change is certainly needed. Our constitutional framers designed the U.S. House of Representatives - the "people's house" - to be the branch of government with the most power and most democratic accountability. From the beginning every Member had to be elected and face the voters every two years, in contrast to presidents picked by an Electoral College and U.S. Senators by state legislators. But the reality is that House elections now provide no more choice or competition to most voters than the former Soviet elections to the Politburo. November 7th marked only the second shift of partisan control in more than five decades, spanning 26 elections and a period when the presidency shifted between the major parties six times. It's high time to modernize our elections and establish a more vital democracy. Consider these five proposals: 1) Better governance. Democratic leaders should change the ugly traditions of recent congressional leaders and run the House with more openness to ideas, regardless of their source. Even though in the minority, Republicans should be able to propose amendments. Earmarks should be banned or at least open to full disclosure, and substantial bills should allow time for review and deliberation. 2) Run better elections. Non-partisan, accountable election officials and a national elections commission are essential for elections that are accurate and secure. The U.S. leaves election administration to a hodge-podge of over 3,000 counties and nearly 10,000 municipalities scattered across the nation with too few standards or uniformity to guide them. Election administrators should be highly-trained civil servants who have a demonstrated proficiency with technology, running elections and making the electoral process transparent and secure. A national commission should establish minimum standards and partner with state and local election officials to ensure pre-election and post-election accountability for their plans and performance and prevent poor decisions like purchasing glitzy voting machines that lack voter-verified paper trails. 3) Universal voter registration. We need a system of universal voter registration in which election officials automatically register all eligible voters and change records when people move. Most established democracies have voter rolls that are far more complete and clean than ours - even Iraq has far more adults registered to vote than the United States. Universal voter registration will be all the easier now that states must establish voter databases that can be cross-checked with other lists of adults like Department of Motor Vehicle databases. Done well, universal registration would add 50 million eligible voters to our voter rolls and make it easier to eliminate redundancy. 4) Changing our 18th-century electoral system. We should end redistricting shenanigans that block accountability and adopt proportional voting methods. Partisan gerrymandering is bad enough, but most House districts have natural partisan tilts that turn a majority of the vote into 100% of representation - with Democrats having majorities in most cities and Republicans in most rural areas. In an era of hardening partisan voting patterns, those tilts since 1996 have led to more than 98% of House incumbents winning re-election - even this year, 19 out of every 20 incumbents won. In addition, more than nine in ten House races were won by noncompetitive margins from 1998 to 2004, and while that number increased in 2006, expect it to settle back into dormancy in a "normal" election.. In the states, nearly four ten state legislative winners did not face even token opposition. Proportional voting systems would put all voters into competitive elections where their votes count more than district lines. 5) Majority, spoiler-free voting: Instant runoff voting (IRV) is an increasingly popular system at the local level that allows voters to rank a first, second and third choice on their ballots. If your first choice can't use your vote to win and no candidate has a majority, your vote moves to your second ranking as your runoff choice. IRV would pry open our political system and liberate voters to select candidates they really like instead of picking "the lesser of two evils." More candidates can run, but we're all the more certain of majority winners. Introduced with sparkling success in cities like San Francisco and Burlington, IRV has the support of reform-minded major party leaders like Barack Obama and John McCain and could be adopted immediately for most elections. Voter certainly like it - IRV swept four campaigns this year in Minneapolis (MN), Pierce County (WA) and Oakland and Davis in California, while the North Carolina adopted it for certain vacancy elections and up to 20 pilot uses at a local level in 2007-2008. By acting on such an agenda, congressional leaders would take a strong step toward earning the faith and respect of voters from across the spectrum. Whether you're a Democrat, Republican, minor party or independent, you can be part of one big party: the "Better Democracy" party. Steven Hill directs the Political Reform Program for the New America Foundation and is author of "Ten Steps to Repair American Democracy. Rob Richie is executive director of FairVote. --------21 of 22-------- What Can We Expect from the Democrats? The Repudiation of One-Party Rule By ALAN MAASS CounterPunch November 9, 2006 Going into the midterm congressional elections, Republicans held all the power in Washington. But after the drubbing they got on November 7, only the White House remained firmly in their grasp. The Republicans' 30-seat majority in the House of Representatives was turned around, into a Democratic majority of nearly 30 seats. Even more remarkable was the Democrats' near-total sweep of competitive Senate races, giving them a majority if razor-thin leads in Virginia and Montana held up through the final count and likely recounts. The Democrats also won enough governorships to take a majority of state mansions as well. For millions of people who have opposed George Bush and his right-wing agenda for six long years, this election is a long-awaited cause for celebration. It represents a rejection of one-party Republican rule and the GOP program on a range of issues - corporate greed, political corruption, Religious Right fanaticism, and, looming above them all, the disastrous U.S. occupation of Iraq. This is why the 2006 vote took on much greater importance than most midterm elections. A Gallup poll in the lead-up to the vote found that half of respondents were paying "quite a lot" of attention to the elections, the highest since 1994 when the Republicans took control of Congress in the so-called "Republican Revolution." Nearly two-thirds of people surveyed in Election Day exit polls said they voted on the basis of national issues, not local ones. On those issues, the tide has turned dramatically against the Republicans. A USA Today poll survey found that six in 10 Americans were dissatisfied with "the way things are going in the country." Exit polls showed almost the same proportion opposing the Iraq war, with the overwhelming majority of them voting Democrat. A succession of scandals culminating in the Mark Foley congressional page scandal took another leg out from under the Republicans - exposing the hypocrisy of party leaders who covered up for one of their own. The right did have some successes pushing through ballot measures on hot-button issues such as banning same-sex marriage, making English the official language of Arizona and supporting the death penalty in Wisconsin - even in states where the Republicans suffered significant losses. As in 2004, these referendums passed not because masses of people embrace the Religious Right, but because Democrats ducked every opportunity to make the case against them - leaving the debate over them one-sided in favor of the right. By contrast, the best news of the night on ballot measures - the sound victory for a South Dakota referendum to overturn a state law banning virtually all abortions - was the result of a grassroots effort by pro-choice supporters to win opinion to their side. * * * Already on Election Night, the professional pundits were spinning the results into a new conventional wisdom that Democrats won because they ran more conservative candidates. In Indiana, for example, Brad Ellsworth, the Democrat who beat Rep. John Hostettler, brags about the "A" rating he received from the National Rifle Association. In North Carolina, Heath Shuler, who trumpets his evangelical Christianity and opposition to abortion rights, defeated incumbent Republican Charles Taylor. But the idea that Democrats won because they were more conservative is as wrong-headed as the idea that the election represented no change at all. The fact about the U.S. two-party system is that it normally presents voters with two choices - the status quo or "throwing the bums out." The Democrats became the beneficiaries of a mix of sentiments, most of them against Bush and the war, without doing much at all to present an alternative. But in an election like this one, that hardly mattered. According to ABC News exit polls, 62 percent of Rhode Islanders said they supported the job that incumbent Sen. Lincoln Chafee, a moderate Republican, was doing. Yet Rhode Islanders voted Chafee out of office anyway - as a clear protest against Bush and the Republicans. The Democrats did their very best to win this election without proposing any concrete alternatives on the Iraq occupation or other major issues. But among those who voted against the Republicans by voting for the Democrats, there is nevertheless an expectation that a Democratic Congress will make some difference. According to a New York Times/CBS News poll, for example, nearly three-quarters of respondents say they expected U.S. troops would be withdrawn from Iraq more quickly under a Democratic-led Congress. The poll also showed that people expect a Democratic Congress to try to deliver a minimum wage, lower health care and prescription drug costs, and an improved economy. But these expectations won't come close to being met if Democrats are left to themselves. As left-wing writer Joshua Frank pointed out on the CounterPunch Web site, two-thirds of Democrats in tight House races oppose even setting a timetable for troop withdrawal - in other words, "exactly the same position on the war as our liar-in-chief, George W. Bush," Frank wrote. Even setting aside these party conservatives, though, the Democrats share much more in common with the Republicans than they differ on. As a party, the Democrats are the U.S. ruling establishment's B-team, coming off the bench to save the game after the A-team Republicans have nearly blown it. Thus, on Iraq, the Democrats - when they say anything concrete at all - propose a repackaged occupation in Iraq, not an end to it. The Democrats are not defining themselves as opposed to the Republicans, but rather as the not-Republicans - and that is a crucial difference. The party leadership wants to become the new "center" in American politics, uniting sensible liberals - so long as they've broken with inconvenient illusions that Democrats should oppose war or increase social spending or roll back tax break giveaways to the rich - with conservatives who were at home in the Republican Party until the right-wing kooks took over. In an interview with Washington Post columnist David Ignatius, Hillary Clinton used all the catchphrases we can expect to hear from Democrats for the next two years. "Americans are primarily pragmatic," she said. "We are both conservative and progressive. In the pragmatic center, you get people together; you listen, you learn; you don't draw lines in the sand." Expect the Democrats to push for measures they know Republicans will be hard-pressed to oppose, like a long-delayed increase in the minimum wage - or, as House Majority Leader-to-be Nancy Pelosi never tires of repeating, implementing the national security recommendations of the commission that investigated the September 11 attacks. But on the issue of the war, reports the Wall Street Journal, Pelosi "is privately trying to insist that liberals tamp down expectations of getting out of Iraq now. Democratic allies in the House say she wouldn't do anything to jeopardize the new recruits' electoral future, and by extension Democrats' newfound power." * * * The Democrats won't pose a real alternative to the Republicans - unless they face pressure from below. But the demise of Republican one-party rule in the 2006 election creates the potential for this pressure to build. The right's stranglehold on politics has been loosened, opening up new space in the mainstream debate that can embolden people in their growing questioning of U.S. government policies overseas and at home. On Iraq, Republicans and Democrats alike have vowed to seek a "new direction" - in other words, a Plan B that will repackage the occupation. But even a debate over pro-imperialist alternatives for Iraq will open splits at the top that can cast further doubt on the legitimacy of the occupation and give confidence to activists to press ahead with their ideas and activism. Already, the movement of active-duty GIs and antiwar veterans has taken some new steps forward - these can serve to inspire a revitalization of the wider antiwar movement. What's more, the Democrats' newfound power in Congress will force them to define their proposals more clearly - exposing them in the eyes of people who believe they represent a real alternative to the Republicans. The key in all this will be to take advantage of every opportunity opened up by the crushing election rejection of the Republicans to rebuild the struggles against war and for justice and democracy. Alan Maass is the editor of the Socialist Worker and the author of The Case for Socialism. He can be reached at: alanmaass [at] sbcglobal.net --------22 of 22-------- Emily Post says there's a right and a wrong way to drop cluster bombs. Minnesota nice cluster bombs bounce through the hut. Instant peasant stew. Death with decorum. Here. Politely we turn from cluster bomb fodder. Life there is cheap. It wasn't before. It is now. It's what we do best. You can't make rich men's omelets without breaking herds of poor people's heads. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------ - David Shove shove001 [at] tc.umn.edu rhymes with clove Progressive Calendar over 2225 subscribers as of 12.19.02 please send all messages in plain text no attachments To GO DIRECTLY to an item, eg --------8 of x-------- do a find on --8
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