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Question: Who is the best peace candidate? CPNN article: Clark vs Dean for President
Posted: Dec. 16 2003,10:24

I've listened carefully to both Dean and Clark and I don't think either one of them would bring the troops home from Iraq and Afghanistan.

This confirms that I've been doing the right thing by working for the Green Party.  The Green Party does not take money from the big corporations and so it is not bought and sold like the Democrats.  After all, it was Democrats that voted support for Bush to go into Afghanistan and Iraq.

The Green Party is strongly opposed to America's foreign wars and empire-building.  It gives voters a real choice.  It may take us a few years to build the political base, but eventually we will have something solid for people to come out and vote for.  Right now a majority of people are fed up and don't even bother to vote.
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Posted: Dec. 27 2003,09:45

I wrote the following in November, 2000. I think it is still true. Who we put in the Oval Office does not determine whether the government goes to war or not. These decisions are made by a corporate elite who were never voted into power and cannot be voted out. It will take a revolution to remove the warmongers from power. Pretending this can be accomplished by pulling a lever once every four years is a big mistake.

John Spritzler (spritzler@comcast.net)


Millions of Americans welcomed the Ralph Nader 2000 electoral campaign as a breath of fresh air in the stale atmosphere of corporate-controlled parties and politicians. The more Nader lambasted the corporations and their "Republicratic" party, the more popular he became, attracting larger crowds than Gore and Bush. Many people who didn't vote for Nader would have if they thought he could have won. The Nader campaign demonstrated, to those of us who blame corporate power for the problems in our society, that we are not alone.

But before deciding that an electoral strategy is a solution, we need to identify what exactly is the problem.

People increasingly realize that our seemingly unconnected problems—the stress and difficulty that working people face in trying to support a family, the insecurity of people with serious health care needs, the destructive education reforms faced by students and teachers, the pollution of our water and air—are all symptoms of the same problem. The majority of people, who want a more equal and cooperative and democratic world, are under attack by corporate and government leaders who dominate our society. The problem is that real democracy, in the sense of ordinary people shaping society by their values, doesn't exist—not on the job, not in our government, not in our major institutions.

Real democracy must mean that ordinary people exercise effective power at every level of society to shape it with their shared values and shared vision. It can’t be reduced to pulling a lever every four years. Winning real democracy therefore can only be done by ordinary people, in every place of work and neighborhood, acting directly and collectively to take possession of the world from the elite who claim to own it. It means creating a new kind of society from the ground up, one based on equality and commitment to each other. It means people joining together to defeat all the efforts of the elite to impose capitalist relations of competition and inequality.

For people to gain the confidence to take matters into their own hands requires building a mass movement with exactly this goal—a revolutionary movement. Such a movement can succeed only by becoming a vast democratic force consciously determined to create a new society in its image. The movement must grow so large and popular that it can deprive the corporate rulers of the armed might of the state, by convincingly presenting itself, not the corporate-controlled government, as the legitimate authority. This is the solution to the problem of corporate power.

An electoral strategy actually undercuts this real solution. Urging people to vote is the opposite of urging them to join a revolutionary movement. The idea of voting is to elect other people to make changes for us. But the kind of changes we need can only be made by us. An electoral strategy keeps a movement passive, focused on what its candidates might do if elected, when it should be focused on what ordinary people themselves can do where they work and live. This is why the elite have historically used elections to contain anti-corporate movements.

An electoral strategy also prevents a movement from expressing the radical goals that most people want. Radical goals cannot be taken seriously in the absence of widespread confidence that there is a realistic way of achieving them. Only a mass revolutionary movement, in which ordinary people are the active force, can make radical changes in society. By making people place their hopes on some elected officials rather than on themselves, an electoral strategy eliminates any realistic basis for radical goals, and forces movements to trim and adapt their vision and message to what they believe is possible within the limitations of the established structures of power.

Nader's goal, for example, has never been to do away with corporate power but to regulate it so that it can operate in a more sustainable fashion. As he said in a recent Harper's interview, "a free democracy is a precondition for a free market." Nader is not opposed to capitalism but only to its excesses.

I believe that most Americans want not just a reduction in corporate power but a profoundly different kind of society based on different values. The top priority for the anti-corporate movement should be to make people see that they are not alone in this aspiration, so that they will have the confidence to take over control of society from the ground up, without waiting for politicians to do for them what politicians cannot and will not do.

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Posted: Dec. 27 2003,11:40

Bless your hearts, Greens. I've donated to and voted with you in the past and will continue to do so most of the time, but this time around, in the presidential race, there is only one candidate with a demonstrable depth in peace issues and that is Dennis Kucinich.

I teach Peace Studies, I've been a Plowshare resister (twice), and I've done a great deal of writing and editing on peace and nonviolence issues for decades. I have never voted for a major party candidate for President in my life. Based on his knowledge of and commitment to the promotion of nonviolence and disarmament, I would vote for Dennis Kucinich if I have the chance. I urge you familiarize yourselves with his message, his intent and his record.

Peace in 2004,
Tom H. Hastings
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Posted: Jan. 11 2004,06:36

I understand that you don't see yourself represented by Clark or Dean--I don't either!  I have read about the Green Party, and truly support their platform; I consider myself a Green Independent.  Please look at the platform of Dennis Kucinich, and look thoroughly at his website www.kucinich.us.  I believe you will see that this is one who deserves your support.  We do have a Green candidate, and he has clear plans to do the things that America and the world need.  He has integrity like I've never seen in a politician in my lifetime.  Please take responsibility and check him out!
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Posted: Jan. 24 2004,18:50

:cool: The Kooch is it!

Seriously, Dennis Kucinich is the only peace candidate we have ever truly had. He was awarded the Gandhi Peace Award 2004.
He has a specific plan to get our troops out of Iraq, and to repeal the Patriot Act. He has plans for bilateral trade to work with other countries, and to remove NAFTA, WTO and other "free" trade agreements that keep smaller poorer countries oppressed and encourage terrorism. He is a vegan - supporting peace in other aspects if his life as well.

I am involved with the Green Party now - after being an independent - coming to this decision through Dennis's campaign - that we must do everything we can at the grassroots level. For local politics at this point, that means the Green Party and other causal groups. For the presidential election Dennis is the only true peace candidate - and his platform is nearly identical to the GP. He calls himself the Green Democrat, and many GP members in this town have been sending in donations even if they are reluctant to vote in the Primary.
Look into your heart, and make the best decision for your own conscience. This is what Dennis supports. What could be more peaceful?
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5 replies since Dec. 08 2003,15:09 < Next Oldest | Next Newest >

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