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Thursday, February 28, 2008

I no longer support Nader

----- Original Message -----
From: Tom Cleland
Sent: Thursday, February 28, 2008 9:48 PM
Subject: [GP-PCSC] I plan to support the Green Party nominee

Yes, I see that Nader will not be running as a Green:


"Nader also made it official that ‘we are not going to seek the Green Party nomination’ which ‘has four announced candidates -- very articulate candidates.’ Instead, it's likely they will run as independents and not affiliated officially with any currently existing third-party."

I bucked the party to support Nader in 2004. Not this time. I plan to support the Green Party nominee. I personally worked on making our delegate selection rules public so all candidates would feel like they had a fair chance at our nomination. We invited Nader to our forums, we invited his supporters to be observers on the PCSC, we made state web sites available, and we issued a statement of neutrality.

Some would have us believe that our party is thoroughly infiltrated by Demogreens. I’ve seen maybe a little smoke, but no fire. Sure, PCSC co-chair Greg Gerritt is pro-McKinney, but he is counterbalanced by PCSC co-chair Cat Woods, who is pro-Nader. Unless the Nader campaign or others cough up some independently verifiable evidence, I’m going to conclude that everything is fine with the GP.

I don’t think it’s too soon to start thinking strategically. I believe there is room to attack Nader from the left. I don’t think he has been very outspoken on Depleted Uranium or Instant Runoff Voting. Also, I think it’s fair to ask why he’s getting attention from the corporate media. Maybe they just think it’s a story that will boost ratings, or maybe there could be some other motivation.

Below is an email I just sent to family and friends of my cousin, who had written about Obama’s popularity overseas. I responded by forwarding the Nader email promoting the announcement on Meet the Press. After the usual vilification, I asked, "What have the Democrats done for you in the past 25 years?" When I said all five of their answers were based on fear, another cousin challenged me, so I wrote this:

The corporate parties know that fear is a powerful short-term motivator. The Republicans are afraid of the terrorists, and the Democrats are afraid of the Republicans. I have fears too. One fear is that we won’t adapt quickly enough to dwindling fuel supplies. You may have heard on the news that gas and food prices are going up. Heating will continue to get more expensive. Experts say that natural gas is rapidly running out. Think how powerless you feel when the car doesn’t start, the electricity goes out, or the ATM doesn’t dispense cash.

One possible solution would be to build homes and businesses closer together so we could walk to the doctor, dentist, train station, etc. To grow our own food locally so we don’t need fuel-powered tractors and transport. To build more underground earth homes, which never drop below 50 degrees Fahrenheit no matter how cold it gets outside. To build more wind turbines to power our computers, and to install more solar panels, sparkling in the daylight. Since there’s so much we’re against, sometimes people ask us what we’re for. It may sound silly, but I would say a Shining Ecovillage on a Hill. Our hopes are the key to addressing our fears.

It seems the corporate parties want to force a bleak worldview on us, and it spreads like a bad contagion. They can’t deliver on our vision because the profit motive scatters development and reacts to problems rather than preventing them. As a species, I wonder if we will evolve in time. Maybe the corporate parties will steal some of our ideas, but they’ll probably find a way to benefit the rich few along the way as they have in the past. Wouldn’t you rather have the real thing?

For the record, I am no longer supporting Ralph Nader because he announced today that he is not seeking the Green Party nomination. We have four GP candidates in the race, including Kat Swift, Jesse Johnson, and Kent Mesplay. Our front-runner is six-term U.S. Congressional Representative Cynthia McKinney from Georgia. I take my politics very seriously, I adapt to new information, and I base my opinion on fact, not on the opinions of others. I do care about not splitting the vote, but only outside the corporate parties. I care about building our party with local as well as national races, striving for gender and racial balance, and grooming strong, honest candidates for future elections.
You all know we’re better on the issues. Everybody loves us on the issues. Positive change in this country will start with a few brave people who do the right thing and help us get our 5 percent. They will be followed by people who see the 5 percent and believe in our plan, helping us to reach critical mass of say 15 percent. Once critical mass is reached, there will be no reason to return to the corporate parties, ever again, and we can finally complete in earnest the American Revolution, passing Instant Runoff Voting and passing 100% public financing of campaigns.

Fear may be a more powerful short-term motivator, but pleasure is a more powerful long-term motivator. Our hopes are the key to addressing our fears. Please visit gp.org.

Tom Cleland
Golden Valley, MN

"Aye, fight and you may die. Run, and you'll live...at least a while. And dying in your beds, many years from now, would you be willing to trade all the days, from this day to that, for one chance, just one chance, to come back here and tell our enemies that they may take our lives, but they'll never take our freedom?"

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Nader run has people talking Green!

I called Bill Press's national show this morning and I'm pretty sure they aired everything I said before he had to cut to commercial. The topic was Nader. It went something like this:

"What you're missing is that on single payer, nuclear power, depleted uranium, Obama, Clinton, and McCain are all corporatists. On the illegal wiretapping, military commissions, Kyl-Lieberman, the corporate parties have let us down. In addition to Nader, on gp.org, our candidates, Cynthia McKinney, Kat Swift, Jesse Johnson, Kent Mesplay are fighting back. What you're suggesting is a false choice. In 2000 I was voting for something, and I was voting against something after Bill Clinton used nuclear weapons, depleted uranium, in Yugoslavia. I won't vote for corporatists."

Then Press said something like, "Well then you'll elect John McCain," and cut to commercial.

Tom Cleland

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Life’s simple pleasures

Some of the best things in life are free. In addition to my music and my book, don’t forget my database. The best way to learn http://www.thetraverser.com/ might be to just start clicking on buttons. You can’t do any damage. You can even click your browser’s "Back" button, though you’ll have better results clicking the "<=" button instead. Some features were lost when the web host moved the site to a new server, but "Browse by Subject" still works. So does the Help system.

Computers were supposed to make our lives easier, but instead of a shorter work week we ended up with fewer jobs and more money in the hands of those who could afford to pay the programmers (aka consultants, contractors, software developers, whatever). Team leaders, paid by the hour, soon learned how to "milk" projects by making the technical aspects sufficiently complicated to confuse the confusers (capitalists). Account managers who had "people skills" but who were technically incompetent would then over-promise and under-deliver to win bids and get business. Semi-competent system designers would then throw application specifications "over the wall" to the hapless honest technoids. These programmers would be trapped in seemingly endless projects, public sector ones taking even longer than those for private sector clients. Tools like The Traverser were shelved, or ruled out as too efficient. Both pressured and mistrusted at times, it was impossible for some programmers to retain a positive, idealistic attitude.

In the technical world, my hero was Bill Atkinson, the author of MacPaint and HyperCard, who insisted that his products be provided free with new Apple computers. Later I became a fan of open source software and free software. The Traverser is available free at Sourceforge. Corporate profiteering pits people against each other, when really we accomplish so much more when we can share information. We need to devise social systems where people are encouraged to share and share alike, and are rewarded fairly for doing so.

I guess that’s all I have for now. If you have read this far, bless you, and praise be to Athena.

Monday, February 18, 2008

The greater the risks

In a presidential campaign, some states are proportional, and some states are winner-take-all. Some states have caucuses, and some states have primaries. Some states have early contests, and some have late ones. The government plays a role, but the first loyalty should be to the party. Candidates need to know the rules and abide by the outcome. Lately one of the corporate parties has had some controversy over Michigan and Florida.

Like Bill Clinton said in his 1992 convention speech, "For too long those who play by the rules and keep the faith have gotten the shaft."

If I were Obama, I would just talk about abiding by the party’s rules, whatever they may be, as long as they are fair and all are given ample notice ahead of time.

In the Green Party, we are doing our best to notify the candidates of the rules in each state:


After Super Tuesday, in the delegate count, Nader was ahead of McKinney about 125 to 85. However, McKinney won in DC and I expect she will win in Maine, Florida, and Wisconsin. With the possibility of Nader announcing soon, we may see close contests this Spring in RI, OH, SC, WA, MD, MS, NC, GA, AZ, and NM. Minnesota caucuses are March 4, and IL, WI and NJ have conventions at the end of March.

I serve on the Presidential Campaign Support Committee, and would like to stay relatively neutral. For full disclosure purposes, I have given the following amounts to the candidates:

$250 Jesse Johnson
$250 Cynthia McKinney
$250 Ralph Nader
$250 Kat Swift
$50 Kent Mesplay
$50 Jared Ball

Most of what I gave to Kat Swift and Jesse Johnson were in-kind contributions when they visited Minnesota. I also gave $30 each to Nader and McKinney to help them pay off previous campaign debts, and $70 to help the AZGP with their ballot access drive. Kent Mesplay is a good candidate but I haven’t seen him in person since the last time he ran four years ago.

As is the case every four years, the stakes are high. We have to live with our decisions. I sure hope we can all unite courageously against the corporatists. The greater the prize, the greater the risks.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Internet Access to Iran Severed

Together with the lapse in FISA, there could be a heightened risk right now. From an email my cousin sent me:

Multiple reports that internet cables connecting Iran to the rest of the world have been "cut" are raising suspicions in the minds of experts on 9/11 that something serious may be in the works. Prior to 9/11, the FBI shut down Arab Muslim web sites. The fear is that internet access may have been deliberately severed to isolate Iran and make it difficult to communicate in response to a "false flag" attack in the United States, an attack upon Iran, or both. Read our full release at: http://twilightpines.com//index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=121&Itemid=67

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Win the War on Corporatism

When we win the war on corporatism,
We win the war on terrorism.
Because we take away their reason for hating us.
The corporations want to steal their food, wood, and oil.
They want to turn them into slaves.
It’s no wonder they hate us.
Of course there are many layers of evil.
The suicide bombers are desperate.
Desperate people do desperate things.
Warlords cajole and coerce the weak-minded.
The warlords are their own breed of corporatists.
Corporatists want power for themselves.
Corporations want to tear us apart.
They want to keep us from working together for each other.
They want to keep us from building ecovillages.
Corporations want us to work for them.
They want to turn us into slaves.
They give us corporate health costs, corporate poisons, corporate war.
The corporate parties serve their corporate paymasters.
Obama wants nuclear power.
Obama wants to bomb Pakistan.
Clinton wants corporate health costs.
Clinton gave the ok to bomb Iran.
McCain thinks it’s funny to bomb Iran.
The corporate media never talks about depleted uranium.
The Green Party wants to loosen the corporate party stranglehold on our democracy.
You’re either with the Greens, or you’re with the corporatists.
You’re either a patriot or you’re a corporatist.
When we win the war on corporatism,
We win the war on terrorism.

Friday, February 08, 2008

Jesse Johnson interviewed 11 pm tonight

(Check the web site links cited below to confirmwhen the Jim Bohannon Show will be aired in yourarea tonight. Forward widely! -- Scott)>From the Jesse Johnson campaign...Everyone, If you love our environment, you may beinterested to know that the Mountain Party ofWV's own Jesse Johnson will be the radio thisFriday night on the Jim Bohannon show coast tocoast. Just him and Jimbo for an hour. Jimboreplaced Larry King. He has the 5TH largestlistener-ship in the country just behind DonImus. He is ready to soon formally announce a run forPresident as soon as he steps down this Saturdayas State Chair of the Mountain Party. He'srunning in order to gain a national platform todraw attention to the environmental devastationoccurring in WV and the Appalachian region knownas mountaintop removal, a practice by coalcompanies of blowing up mountaintops and pushingthe toxic sediment into the valleys and streams.He calls it "ground zero for global climatechange". Jesse has been speaking to thousands of peopleall across the US. this past year. He battledwith Ralph Nader this past Saturday in DC. Hewent toe to toe in debate with CongresswomanCynthia McKinney in San Fransisco. He has beencommented on in Forbes Magazine, The S.F.Chronicle. Pacifica radio has covered him twicefrom coast to coast during the last month. TheWashington Times was there in DC as well as indie& foreign press. TV coverage on LinkTV andCurrent TV from local cable access to Germany andJapan. He is spreading the word like wildfire.The New Yorker even had a writer in the audience. Here is a link that will give you or anyone theability to find the Jim Bohannon show all overthe country.1ST click on his show.2ND click on the state on the US map and it willdrop down and show all the stations in that statethat carries the show with days, time andfrequency on the dial and if it's AM or FM.If the show does not cover your specific town itwill be best to try and tune in the AM signalnearest to the town. http://www.westwoodone.com/stationfinder?programID=309&state=-1&ACTION%28stateSearch%29=Search * * * * *Why not Nader? Why Jesse Johnson? Find out whythe Green Party might be Your party, this Fridayon the Jim Bohannon Show!February 7, 2008Washington, DC -- Ralph Nader isn¹t even a memberof the Green Party, so why turn it over to him?Give yourself and the United States a real choicewhen it comes to 2008 presidential candidates,and learn about Jesse Johnson of the Green Party.Listen in as Jesse offers a fresh perspective ona cleaner, better, more stable future. Jesse willbe speaking with national talk show host andradio legend Jim Bohannon this Friday night at 11p.m. Eastern time, 8 p.m. Pacific time.Give yourself and others a chance to experiencean entirely new conversation. Find out how asJesse Johnson goes coast to coast this Friday onthe Jim Bohannon show. He¹ll let you know abouthow we can clean up the environment, improve theeconomy by going green, help America to be abetter world partner, and bring ethics, trust,and wisdom back to Washington.³UNIFYING THROUGH COMMUNICATION² is Jesse¹screed. Make it yours, too, by listening andcalling in. Just dial 1-866-50-JIMBO.Go to http://www.westwoodone.com/stationfinder and click on the Jim Bohannon Show to find outwhere you can hear Jesse Johnson this Friday at11 p.m. Eastern, 8 p.m. Pacific.

Victories for McKinney, Nader Super Tuesday


Sunday, February 03, 2008

Attend your MN caucus Mar. 4

Please participate in democracy and attend your Minnesota caucus on March 4.

Leave the Oil in the Soil