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Wednesday, October 17, 2012

The silenced clamoring at gates of U.S. empire ─ Stein, Honkala, Anderson

Substantive responses barred from presidential debates
Green Party candidates protested last night at Hofstra University appeared today in rebroadcast parallel forum on Democracy Now! “Exclusive: Expanding the Debate with Third-Party Candidates Jill Stein, Virgil Goode, Rocky Anderson”
Excerpting, editing, brief comment
By Carolyn Bennett: I apologize that my excerpted and edited version from the Democracy Now transcript of the third party candidate’s participation seems biased. I guess it is because, while I believe strongly in free speech and new ideas, I am strongly against regressive opinion, the status quo, the willfully ignorant and or the ridiculous.

Last night’s protest outside dominant party’s (singular) “anti-democracy” performance

Dr. Jill Stein (Green Party candidate for U.S. President):

We are here at the barred gates of American debates to say that we need to open up this debate and make it a full, fair and inclusive debate.  

Cheri Honkala (Green Party candidate for U.S. Vice President):

It shouldn’t just be whether or not you have billions of dollars that determine whether or not the American people can hear about your platform.

Jill Stein:

Our Green campaign is on the ballot for 85 percent of voters.

Eighty-five percent of voters deserve to know who their choices are in this election and what the real solutions are that can solve the desperate problems that we’re facing. The Commission on Presidential Debates makes a mockery of democracy by conducting this fake and contrived debate.

Stein - Honkala
Green Party
Pres - Vice Pres
Jill Stein:

We’re here to stand our ground.

We’re here to stand ground for the American people, who have been systematically locked out of these debates for decades by the Commission on Presidential Debates.

We think this commission is entirely illegitimate; … If democracy truly prevailed, there would be no such commission. The debates would still be run by the League of Women Voters [and] would be open with the criteria that the League of Women Voters had always used: that if you have done the work to get on the ballot, if you are on the ballot and could actually win the Electoral College by being on the ballot in enough states, you deserve to be in the election and you deserve to be heard; and that the American people actually deserve to hear choices which are not bought and paid for by multinational corporations and Wall Street.

Stein - Honkala police handled
outside Hofstra presidential debates
STEIN/HONKALA clamoring for speech at gates of empire
Confronted by Police force

“We were held at a facility, especially created for detaining protesters at the debates,” Dr. Stein said. “It appeared to be a warehouse which had been specially equipped. It was obvious … [that] they were prepared to handle a lot of people.

“They had 13 [police] officers there and three in plain clothes. For most of the time, it was just Cheri Honkala and me yet they felt the need to keep us in tight plastic restraints, tightly secured to metal chairs.…

“We were handcuffed to chairs for the entire duration of our time ─ about eight hours. Thirteen officers to keep these two women, mothers, handcuffed to chairs for the entire time.

“That was their procedure for handling people who were arrested at the debates,” Jill Stein said on Democracy Now. Did you get to see the debate from the warehouse,” Amy Goodman asked. “Absolutely not,” Stein answered.

Speaking last night, Jill Stein said in a clip rebroadcast today at Democracy Now

This is what democracy looks like in the 21st century. … [And] It’s going to take some politics and courage to get our democracy back.

More [is] to come.



Rocky Anderson (U.S. presidential candidate, Justice Party):

“The important issue is that we went into Libya … without any authorization from Congress. This is the real long-term question that ought to be addressed:

Do we allow one person to act as a dictator and determine whether our country goes to war, or do we, in compliance with the War Powers Clause of the United States Constitution, seek a determination from Congress that there is reason for our country to engage in acts of war?

This is an ongoing problem with the drone attacks, creating more hatred, more hostility toward the United States in sovereign nations.

We need to get back to the fundamentals. This is the important question that we should all be addressing and Congress needs to live up to its constitutional responsibility.

Jill Stein (presidential candidate, Green Party:

The tragedy in Libya, … is a very good case in point that shows how this ‘get tough’ international policy has been extremely unproductive, has produced the opposite effect of what was intended.

“And we are seeing this [effect] now, not only in Libya; but in the demonstrations against U.S. embassies across the Middle East, in the fact that the Afghanistan army is shooting at U.S. soldiers.

“The war effort is not being turned over to an Afghan army. The Afghan army itself has a very high desertion rate. 

We need a foreign policy based, not on ‘tough guy’ militarism, not on wars for oil; but on international law and respect for human rights.”

Issue: JOBS

Jill Stein:

“Women-headed households have a 40 percent poverty rate relative to the 15 percent poverty rate among the general population. So we have a critical problem.

“That’s why our Green New Deal insures that everyone will have a job, and a job paying living wages.

The Green New Deal will put 23 million people back to work, will end unemployment. We will provide jump-start grants, zero-interest loans to small businesses and worker co-operatives, and we’ll provide the public works and public services that enable you to go down to an employment office, rather than an unemployment office, and actually get a job.

“We are also advocating for free public higher education.”

Banks are now getting a $40 billion every month as a part of the latest [Obama government] ‘quantitative easing.’ Again, we need to quantitatively ease student debt, not bank debt, again, for the third time, their fourth consecutive bailout.

Issue: Trade Agreements, Off-shoring

Jill Stein:

“We saw the first free trade agreement, NAFTA, enacted under Bill Clinton, a Democrat. We saw it carried out under George Bush; we saw Barack Obama expand three free trade agreements and is now negotiating a secret free trade agreement, the Trans-Pacific Partnership, that will continue to offshore jobs, undermine wages; and as well, this time, compromise American sovereignty with an international corporate board that can rule on our laws and regulations and say whether or not they pass muster. This is an absolute outrage against American sovereignty, democracy and our economy.

“We need to turn the free trade agreements into fair trade agreements.

“The Green New Deal will create the community-based jobs we need here, supporting  small businesses, worker co-operatives, and public services and worker—and public works to put people back to work right now, for a cost—less than the cost of the first stimulus package.”

Rocky Anderson:

“We are seeing a return to the Gilded Age with a disparity in income and wealth unparalleled since the 1920s.
Anderson - Rodriguez
Justice Party
Pres - Vice Pres

“We can do so much better providing good jobs but having a strong labor movement in this country is crucial to that.

“We can renegotiate those trade agreements, put in place a WPA-like project, and raise wages, including the minimum wage, which will have that rippling effect and helping out everybody along the way.”


Dr. Jill Stein:

“It is every woman and every man’s right to have complete healthcare through a Medicare-for-all plan, which is the only way that we can actually get to complete coverage. It provides comprehensive care, so that it’s not up to your boss, as the president basically validated by agreeing to relieve business—businesses where employers objected on religious grounds to the coverage of birth control.

Dr.Jill Stein
“Birth control should not be up to your employer nor should vaccinations or blood transfusions or any other aspect of healthcare that might be objected to on religious grounds.

“Healthcare is a human right. We should be providing it now for everyone. It will also save us trillions of dollars over the coming decade.”

Issue: VIOLENCE, GUNS (domestic)

Rocky Anderson:

“We need to end the stranglehold of the National Rifle Association on our government.

There’s one reason for assault weapons ─ to kill as many people as quickly as possible.

There was a federal ban on assault weapons, which expired in 2004.

The permanent reinstatement of that ban would be the right thing to do but neither of these [Republican and Democratic Party] candidates will do the right thing when it comes to ending the influence of the National Rifle Association and, once and for all, getting assault weapons off the streets of this country.

Jill Stein:

“Some 260 people every day are injured or killed by gun violence, so it’s very important that we ban assault weapons, for starters; but there are other steps that need to be taken quickly.

“Local communities need to be able to regulate guns, as needed, to deal with their violence.

We need to keep guns out of the hands of criminals.
We need background checks, so that the mentally ill are not possessing and using guns.
We need to end the gun show loopholes, as well, because there’s far too much violence from guns, which is not needed.

“But in addition, we have to address other drivers of community violence.

That includes ensuring that mental health services are available to everyone. Mental health services have been cut back in a major way with all the cuts to healthcare.

Providing Medicare for all ─ that covers everyone, including mental health services ─ would go a long way to ensure that very unstable and troubled individuals are not getting into possession of guns and then using them.

In addition, we need to end the culture of drug violence, which also is a major driver of gun violence. This means legalizing marijuana because it is a substance that is dangerous because it is illegal (it is actually far less dangerous than other legal substances). Legalizing marijuana will go a long way toward putting an end to the violence surrounding the drug culture.

Sources and notes

“Green Party Candidates Arrested, Shackled to Chairs for 8 Hours after Trying to
Enter Hofstra Debate,” October 17, 2012, http://www.democracynow.org/2012/10/17/green_partys_jill_stein_cheri_honkala

 “Exclusive: Expanding the Debate with Third-Party Candidates Jill Stein, Virgil Goode, Rocky Anderson,” October 17, 2012, http://www.democracynow.org/2012/10/17/exclusive_expanding_the_debate_with_third#transcript


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