Wednesday, January 17, 2007

SF Message to Pelosi - Cut Off the War Money

From the left coast of San Francisco, earlier this month some 1000 people gathered to send a creative message to our elected officials and the world. Unlike some other beach gatherings a little to our north, I understand that folks at this one were fully clothed. The gathering was at Ocean Beach outside one of my favorite hangouts - the Beach Chalet.
Blogs of the week - Down With Tyranny as usual tells it like it is - with a great youtube clip for young and old alike - DEMOCRATS! DON'T BE A BUNCH OF PUSSIES-- IMPEACHMENT IS TOO SOFT A LANDING FOR BUSH
On the local tip - San Francisco Bay Area activists are gearing up for the global actions on 1/27 - young army Lt. Ehren Watada's mother Carolyn Ho, progressive presidential candidate Dennis Kucinich and others will be joining us in SF for our actions. Watada is the courageous officer who is resisting the "illegal and immoral" war on Iraq and faces a court marial on February 5th. More info -

Cut Off the War Money! - SF Bay Guardian sends a strong message to Speaker Nancy Pelosi in this weeks editorial -
Twenty thousand more US kids, going to fight a war that can't be won. Twenty thousand more lives in potential danger for no imaginable purpose. This isn't the "surge" Bush has invoked; it's an escalation, one reminiscent of the worst days of the Vietnam War, when Presidents Lyndon Johnston and then Richard Nixon sent more and more troops into a quagmire from which there was no good exit.
...Remember: the odds are very good that many of those 20,000 soldiers will never make it home and that many, many more will come home mutilated and maimed. ...And since Bush is acting unilaterally, without congressional assent, the only way to stop this madness is to cut off funding.
Pelosi has been devoting most of her energy and political capital to the rather modest advances of the "100 hours" strategy. But frankly, nothing on her agenda is as important as ending the war. The House and Senate leadership need to move
immediately to eliminate funding for any troop escalation. * More.
How to De-fund the Escalation - Gareth Porter from offers an historical analysis and a clear solution to Pelosi and the Democratic Party Leadership -

The Democrats’ real problem appears to be political rather than constitutional: They have convinced themselves that they cannot cut off funds without being accused of failing to keep faith with U.S. troops in Iraq.

But this is a false dilemma. Congress can force Bush’s hand without being vulnerable to the charge of stranding U.S. troops simplyby setting a date beyond which no funds can be used for U.S. military presence in Iraq. As long as the date provides a reasonable time for those troops to be “redeployed” from Iraq, the burden falls on the executive branch to adjust its policy to the congressional requirement by taking them out of the war zone. More.

Speaking of war funding, whenever I bring up the war with my classes at SF State, I use a helpful economic tool. The National Priorities Project allows you to break down the cost of war - $359 billion as of today - and compare it to how much we could have spent on health care, schools, teachers, grants and college scholarships, human needs, etc.

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