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It's time to vote Green

In this issue:

Matt Gonzalez Elected President of San Francisco Board of Supervisors
Behind the Bipartisan Drive Toward War in Iraq: The Council on Foreign Relations
Greens explore running anti-war candidates: Panel examines incumbents' records
It's time to vote Green
Editorial: Greens look at the presidency; no easy answers
Traditional ladder to electoral success is questioned
Unlikely Candidate, pt. II
Nader: Roots of a green champion
Excellent health care, coming soon to California
The Land is Our Mother: Brazil's Landless Workers' Movement
Letters to the Editor
News Clips
The media drum-roll starts. Progressives you know, your friends, people you respect are saying, "only the Democrats can save America from Bush." You waiver. Will your Green Vote, your vote for Hope, Prosperity and American Values inadvertently push us further into the abyss of totalitarianism?

by Barrington Daltrey

Even the most “progressive” media journalists warn you not to “throw away” your vote. “Ralph, Don’t Run,” Ronnie Dugger screams in the Nation magazine. Some Greens begin to edge away from Green Party candidates. Now what? What do you do?

You vote Green, of course. You vote Green, secure that you have made the best possible choice.

The Democrats ignore the concerns of virtually every voter in the U.S. So, in the 2002 election, the public attempted to “wake up” the Democrats by staying home in droves rather than ratify the politics of the Republicans and their look-alike Democratic opponents.

In the 2002 elections, only about 39% of eligible voters actually voted.

The Democrats ran candidates who merely mimicked their Republican opponents. Was this deference to Republicans new for the Democrats? Or long standing policy? Let’s review what else Democrats have been up to in recent years:

Leading up to 2002, Democrats didn’t really oppose the big Republican tax break for America’s wealthiest. They didn’t investigate irregularities in the 2000 presidential election, noticeably ignoring civil rights violations that disenfranchised large numbers of their most loyal voters. They didn’t investigate the 9/11 World Trade Center and Pentagon disaster or the security breakdowns surrounding that event. They went along with most Republican executive and judicial appointments, including of John Ashcroft as attorney general.

If we step back in time, we see that under Clinton, the Democrats “reformed” welfare, to the detriment of our nation’s poorest citizens. They failed to do anything about skyrocketing health care costs. They passed GATT and NAFTA, and strengthened the world’s secret “trade court,” run by the WTO. They kept Alan Greenspan in charge of the Federal Reserve, despite his policy of keeping wages down and people unemployed. And, they allowed “liberalized” corporate accounting rules that led directly to Worldcom, Enron, Global Crossing and other corporate meltdowns, costing thousands of people their jobs and retirement benefits.

Despite all this, liberal pundits tell us we need to vote for “progressive” Democrats. Why? Do progressive Democrats vote progressively? Sure, occasionally. But Democratic House leader Dick Gephardt was replaced by Nancy Pelosi, who had voted against invading Iraq. Then just 72 hours after her election to minority whip, in a “Meet the Press” interview, Pelosi assured the nation, “If our young people are called to duty, certainly we’ll support the action of the president.”

If progressive Democrats too often turn their backs on the party line and instead vote their consciences, the Democratic Party will turn its back on them.

Need an example? Look at Cynthia McKinney. Although re-election is “guaranteed” in more than 90% of congressional races, McKinney’s re-election bid failed in the primary, against another Democrat. Sure, there was big money from local and nationwide opponents. But the important question is, “where was the Democratic Party?” Well, the place the party wasn’t, was behind McKinney, supporting her return to Congress.

So where does all this leave us, the voting public? We can vote for allegedly progressive Democrats, in a bid to hold back the floodwaters eroding our rights, and then pray for the best.

Or, we can change the world. As I say, it’s time to vote Green.

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