But it was only over time that I came to understand Sheehan as a Jeffersonian Democrat in the best sense of that term.
John Nichols, The Nation, June 2nd, 2007
What a sorry state we find ourselves in today. We can't get on an airplane without having our rights violated. We can't send an email or make a phone call without risking being spied on by our own government. We can't protest an elected official without being confined to pens in "free speech zones," or blocked from even getting anywhere near an event at all. We can't buy over the counter allergy medication without having our personal info going into a governmental database and landlords of medicinal marijuana dispensaries in San Francisco are being harassed by the feds for something that has been approved by the people of the State of California.
However, we can be arrested and held indefinitely in torture camps with no rights to a fair trial or habeas corpus. Our hard earned money can be forcefully taken from us by that very same government who then uses the money to violate our rights and kill hundreds of thousands of innocent people in wars of aggression for empire. We get a few crumbs of bread from Uncle George and Aunt Nancy so we are supposed to feel protected and warm and fuzzy about our "benefactors."
If the last two digits of your SS# end with 00-20; AND you filed a tax return, you are getting your stimulating stimulus check soon, if it hasn't already been deposited into your bank account. Don't spend your crumbs all at one gas station...spread the wealth!
Instead of extending unemployment or food stamp benefits to help Americans who are the neediest, of course, the mortgage bankers who made irresponsible loans will be getting bailed out to the tune of billions of your tax dollars and where do you think your check came from anyway? It's your money you are getting back and we are supposed to get teary eyed with gratitude and forget that the reason we are in this economic mess is because of our nation's grossly bloated Military Industrial Complex (which deserves capital letters for its prominence in all aspects of our lives) and its tools in the White House and Congress who keep it morbidly obese.
America spends more at its base in defense than every other country in the world combined! With a population of 300 million, our DOD budget is 635 billion and that does NOT include Iraq, Afghanistan, the VA, nuclear programs, recruitment programs (that have increased ten fold since the invasion of Iraq), military aid to foreign countries, etc. The full total of our military spending will never be known because of "black" budgets, but it is well over one trillion dollars. One thousand billion! By comparison, China, with over one billion people spends 65 billion a year on defense.
Now, Congressional Democratic leadership, under the influence of BushCo and the Military Industrial Complex are working on a plan to give BushCo more money than he wants to extend the occupations well into the next administration. With the way Barack and Hillary are going at it, the next president could very well be "Bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb Iran!" What if it is "Obliteration" Clinton? Or "Redeploy" Obama? Our options for complete withdrawal from Iraq and for world peace are slim, at best: especially with a profligate Congress.
I am running for Congress against the major Bush enabler, Nancy Pelosi. She has handed George everything he has asked for and more, but especially carte blanch immunity from all of his crimes. Nancy Pelosi is not the solution to any problem: she is part of the problem.
San Francisco is a Democratic town with a capital "D." However, the district is also very progressive and the Green Party does very well here. Being an Independent anywhere is daunting, but with restrictive laws that are designed to gag the voice of the people, it is even more so in California. However I believe in democracy with a small "d." I believe in a Jeffersonian principle of democracy where every voice is heard and respected, not just the voice of the corporate, establishment elite.
A vast majority of the 8th District in California wants BushCo impeached, and the occupation to end, that is not a fact that is in dispute. But how do we accomplish these goals? Do we allow this district to be represented by a person who ignores the will of her constituency? Do we allow the status quo of corporate America to call the shots? Does Democratic San Francisco want to thwart democracy by consistently electing someone who brings the bacon home to make the fat cats fatter and force the people onto a diet of choosing gas over food? Medicine over gas? Rent over medical bills? Poverty over prosperity? Oppression over inclusion?
There are many fantastic Democrats in this city and area that are worthy of support, but in my opinion, Nancy Pelosi is not one of them. I may not have a capital D after my name, but I am more democratic than she. I want everyone in this district to have the same comfort, security and prosperity that are now consolidated at the top. I want every child to attend good and safe schools without being Left Behind by the No Child Left Behind Act. I want our older children to be free from military predators and able to go to University without bankrupting their families. I want our unions to regain strength that was stolen by "free" trade agreements that Ms. Pelosi supports and I want those agreements abolished so everyone can make a decent living in their own country. I want everyone to be able to be covered by universal, single-payer health care. I know these things are attainable because many countries all over the world have achieved them. How can we achieve socio-economic justice here in America where most of our wealth goes to support the Military Industrial Complex?
I demand that Congress quit funding this immoral and illegal occupation and rein in the Military Industrial Complex. I demand that the Pentagon's budget be trimmed to a manageable size that would inherently promote peaceful conflict resolution and would not be able to support wars of aggression for empire building. However, what I am demanding directly hurts the pocket books of many Congress members (D and R) who are invested in or have their campaigns invested in by the Military Industrial Complex. This is why WE are not represented.
Democracy with a small "d" and our republic are worth the struggle and are profoundly more important than Democrats or Republicans.
Please join me in the struggle for our nation.