Coastal Post Online


March, 2004

Letters To The Editor

Dufficy Was Never "Elected"

I just received a flyer in my mail from incumbent judge Michael Dufficy, asking votes to "re-elect" him. When was he ever elected?

After two failed bids for Marin superior court, in 1982 and 1988, he was appointed to the bench in 1990 by then Governor Deukmejian, whose Marin campaigns he led twice. In 1992 and 1998, Dufficy was unopposed.

At the Marin Coalition forum for judicial candidates on February 4th, Michael Dufficy repeatedly stated that the issue in this election is experience. His two challengers cited reports by Marin lawyers who actually practice before him, who describe bias on the bench, "sinister favoritism" and ratings of "deficient."

A decision based on knowledge of the law and the facts of each case, trump "experience" every time.

Basia Crane, Member

Marin Coalition

Honest Elections?

In their zeal to win every election, corporate Republicans are resorting to old fashioned ballot stuffing by designing and promoting paperless electronic voting machines. With the ever-present opportunity for tampering, voters have no way to know that their votes have been accurately recorded and counted. The Congress and the Senate must take action immediately to ensure trustworthy paper trails.

For more information, log onto and

Eileen Siedman

Mill Valley

Supports Peter Lagarias

CleanAirOn5th, the San Rafael citizen's group which brought together last year's successful anti-urban crematory fight, supports Peter Lagarias for Superior Court judge. Mr. Lagarias added the necessary professionalism and arguments that helped defeat the unwise proposal. He worked pro bono for the cause.

We are very lucky Peter took an interest in the issue and found he has a history of other such altruistic endeavors which benefit society. He founded Rotaplast, the international Rotary project which provides third world children with free facial reconstructive procedures.

He has the trial experience to step onto the bench and perform the job without bias. Mr. Lagarias is an outstanding choice because of his qualifications, education, experience and the nature which motivates him to unselfishly service his community.

Please give Peter Lagarias your vote on March 2.

Brad Sears, CleanAirOn5th

San Rafael

Prop. 56 A No

California students who stayed awake in their social studies class understand Proposition 56 to be a danger to our democratic system. Legislation, especially that dealing with budget issues, should require a 2/3 vote to pass. Switching to 51 or even 55% makes it easier for any majority to run away with the hen house. Consensus, not the numbers game, is one hallmark of a viable democracy.

Edward W. Miller, MD

Woolsey, Yes!

Burning Representative Lynne Woolsey at the stake for requesting some degree of Christian tolerance for a convicted rapist seems more a political backlash than a reasoned critique. Woolsey's spirit of compassion has been one of the hallmarks of her success as our Representative.

Edward W. Miller, MD

Adams For The People

MUTA offers a heartfelt "thank you" to Supervisor Susan Adams, the only supervisor befriending property owners, renters, workers and businesses from the four BOS enemies of Prop. 13 and our cherished 2/3-vote on taxes.

Supe. Adams voted NO when the Gang of Four (Brown, Kinsey, Rose and Murray) voted to endorse Proposition 56, 57 and 58.

Prop. 56 is the worst of the lot. If enacted, it would empower the overwhelmingly Big Spending Democrat legislature to raise all sorts of taxes by a mere 55% -- income, sales, use, transit, and property taxes, and any other taxes they might dream up. But its supporters never mention that fact, just emphasizing how it will punish legislators if the budget is late. They really want to punish all of us.

Prop. 56 would hit everybody in the pocketbook, home owners, renters, consumers, employers, and workers. To protect your wallet, Vote NO on Prop. 56. And NO on 55, 57 and 58 as well.

Fielding Greaves

Secretary, MUTA

Aggression Begets Aggression

I am writing in answer to a letter by Dr. Norman Mann in your January issue. Dr. Mann brought up the killing of Egyptian Prime Minister Anwar Sadat by Arabs as an example of what Arabs can do to each other and how brutal they can be.

It seems like he's suffering from short memory syndrome. It wouldn't hurt to remind him how the Israeli Prime Minister Yizhak Rabin was slain. It wasn't an Arab who killed Rabin, it was a full-blooded Israeli Jew. Besides, an objective stand against violence would call for condemning any kind of violence regardless of race or religion, etc. The brutal aggression and daily killing of Palestinians by the bloody hands of the Israeli occupier should be condemned in the same fashion.

Mann's statement, "Just think of what the Arabs are capable of doing if they ever get control over Jews," is an excuse Israel has been using to cover it aggression and war crimes against Palestinians for years. Jews living peacefully under Arab control has occurred down through history, in Spain during the Arab hegemony when Jews were treated equally. And, for hundreds of years, the two lived peacefully side by side in Palestine. The drive to control Palestinian land by Zionist colonialists and the uprooting of Palestinian farmers from the lands they've lived in was the trigger of the bloody conflict we are witnessing now.

What is actually happening is the occupation is causing radicalization among desperate Palestinians. After the Oslo Accords there was a significant time when Palestinians didn't commit any violence because, despite the lack of any solution to what Palestinians were looking for, they were hoping and longing for the end of the occupation.

The brutality of Arabs against Arabs or Arabs against Jews must be condemned by all means. Although we have to remember that the violence committed by Palestinians is the outcome of brutal and humiliating occupation. Only a just peace will bring security to Israel. Aggression only causes more aggression.

Afif Houssain

From AWOL to AWOS?

As the ode saying goes: You may fool some of the people most of the time, but you cannot fool all the people all the time. It will be to everyone's good if someone can remind President Bush of this old, time tested adage. The accusation that George W. Bush went AWOL (Absence With Out Leave) during his short stint in the National Guard in 1972-73 surfaced when he ran for governor in Texas and again when he ran for the current office that he occupies. The matter was never resolved because he could not prove that the allegations were false. His supporters, however, were pretty effective in covering the matter up, hope that it may eventually go away and be totally forgotten. Well, the truth has a nasty way of always coming back at us, more often than not, to bite our hands or kick our butt. The President's spinmeisters need to do a better job in their current effort to shoo away the AWOL stigma of the president that appears to have gained steam and momentum this time around. To offer a blurred photocopy of a payroll microfiche as proof of services rendered by young Georgie in the National Guard in 1972-73 is as credible a testimonial as an unsigned death certificate is to proving one's death. And to further insult our intelligence, the president himself insists that his having been given an honorable discharge by the Guard is proof that he was not AWOL.

To put the whole matter in the proper perspective, let us consider what Richard Cohen, a columnist for the Washington Post wrote in his article titled "Bush Should be Honest About His Service": "During the Vietnam War, I was what film maker Michael Moore would call a "deserter". Along with President Bush and countless other men, I joined the National Guard, did my six months of active duty (basic training, etc.) and then returned to my home unit where I eventually dropped out of sight. In the end, just like President Bush, I got an honorable discharge. But unlike Bush, I have just told the truth about my service and he hasn't. For two years or so, I played a perfectly legal form of hooky. To show you what a mess the Guard was at the time, I even got paid for all the meetings I missed. I have no shame about my service, but I know it for what it was -- hardly the Charge of the Light Brigade. But when Bush attempts to drape the flag of today's Guard over the one he was in so long ago, when he warns his critics to remember that "there are a lot of really fine people who have served in the National Guard and who are serving in the National Guard today in Iraq," then he is doing now what he did then: hiding behind the ones who were really doing the fighting. It is about time he grew up."

It is embarrassing to even hope that George W. Bush should grow up considering that elected or not, he is still currently, the president of our country. I believe it will be more prudent to ask him to have more shame. He should start being ashamed of himself before all decent Americans become ashamed of having him as our president. Being AWOL (Absence With Out Leave) is bad enough. Having an AWOS (Administration With Out Shame) is totally unacceptable.

Antonio Serna

Rohnert Park

Bush Killing Amtrak

President Bush plans to give Amtrak half of what the railroad needs in 2005; $900 million instead of $1.8 billion. A demise of Amtrak as one head CEO characterized it.

How many millions of Americans use and depend on Amtrak each year? They can all be counted as votes against George W. Bush in the 2004 presidential election and the Democrats won't even have to lift a finger.

Ron Lowe

Nevada City, CA

Great Irrational Anger, Jim Scanlon

Great article! Anger abounds. I hope that you WILL come to NY for the convention- if they continue to think that it's a really good idea to be there! That might be the time to let our voices be heard up close!

Monica Gabrielle

Widow of Richard Gabrielle, Aon Corp., 103rd Fl. WTC2

Co-Chairperson, Skyscraper Safety Campaign

[email protected]

Family Steering Committee for the 9/11 Independent Commission

Miserable Failure Search

A few months ago there was a story in the news-that if you searched for "miserable failure" on Google, you got Bush's biography. I've been playing with Google to see what other words return what results and its quite a lot of fun. Micheal Moore's site talking about Bush now replaces the first spot for "miserable failure" Bush is now second. Same results if "miserable" and "failure" are used separately. But anti-bust sites take #1 for the words "AWOL", "chimp" and "worst president ever." If you type in "budget surplus" however-you get a story about Clinton.

Marc Perkel

San Francisco

No Need For Inquiry-Bush Needs To Explain All

With no hard evidence of Iraqi Weapons of Mass Destruction which was the "cause celebre" which Bush drove the coalition into war, there is no need now for him to authorize an inquiry into the intelligence he used in selling this possible fiasco, which could very well undermine the financial stability and credibility of the USA.

I urge the nation to remember that George W. Bush is the Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces. The nation must look to him as a responsible leader since he has control of all security agencies as head of the Executive Branch of Government. All Security Agencies come under his control and support. When the President speaks to members of Congress as well as to the American people they believe that their President with his awesome powers speaks the truth and the facts as they are. When he is right and successful he is entitled to all the accolades of the nation. All the optimistic appearances as to how justified our Iraqi mission was from the deck of the air craft carrier off San Diego and with the troops in Iraq does not relieve him from the embarrassment of finding out that his promotion of the destruction of Iraq appears to be faulted from the lack of evidence of his outspoken statements concerning Iraqi build up of WMDs.

It appears as though there are no WMD and in spite of Rumsfeld's hope that maybe down the road they will be found. The current statements by George J. Tenet distancing himself from responsibility of his agencies "seeing evil, hearing evil and speaking evil" from Saddam, Bush must accept responsibility for selling the attack on Iraq.

I strongly urge the nation to reject his call for an investigation. The facts speak for themselves. Bush may have misled the nation. He might try to redeem himself now, as former Sec. of Defense McNamara has done in admitting that his policy in Vietnam was wrong. President Bush should bare all his sources of information and explain his willingness to believe the sycophants around him who may have feed him information they thought he wanted.

Of course, if Bush has the courage to divulge all and not have it come out after the election he has a longshot of a chance to be reelected. If he is half the man I believe he is and he wants to be, he will come clean and fill in the blanks and connect the dots. His credibility is waning by the hour. An investigation will not save him.

Bush is our leader, Commander in Chief of all armed forces and the head of all security agencies. He and the security agencies failed to prevent 911 and may very well have contributed to a greater national disaster

Dr. Norman E. Mann

San Diego

Dumping Dean Isn't Nice Or Wise

So, you and others credit Dean for bringing leftist issues to the fore, but you abandon him for the establishment when it's convenient, like a man who has been sensitized to be a better person by one woman and then abandons her for a younger, prettier woman who then reaps the benefits of his "newfound" sensitivity.

Now we can have the "presidential" John Kerry, who has run a despicably smarmy campaign against Dean, distorting much of what the latter has said, while shamelessly exploiting his own career as a trained killer in a questionable war. And the young and the Greens and the Naderites will come aboard, you think. In the last election, I campaigned vehemently against Nader, saying that even if one compromised it was important to vote for someone simply because he was not a Republican. After watching the insidious attempts during the last couple of weeks of the media whores, the centrist Dems and the rightwing to bring down Dean, if Dean is not the nominee, I am decamping from the Democratic party and will be casting my vote either for a third party candidate or writing one in (probably Dean).

Wesley Clark voted for Reagan and Bush and didn't become a Democrat until he ran for President. John Kerry and John Edwards voted to give sweeping powers to make war anywhere anytime to a stupid, mean-minded, vindictive, intolerant, uninformed man. If they didn't know this about him, they are fools. If they did know this and voted to give him these powers anyway, they lack all conviction. If Kerry or Edwards wins the nomination, the war wins, the corporate structure wins, fear wins, and, probably the Republicans win next November, as both of them will have lost the ill-conceived, poorly-executed war as an issue. Too bad. With the lily-livered opposition provided by the Democratic party, what difference really does it make? An electorate who are swayed by the idiot winds in the media and the mainstream party machines doesn't really deserve the genuine article, do they?

Sheila Held

Wauwatosa, Wisconsin

Thanks, President Bush

I want to thank your President Bush for my freedom. I don't know what weapons he used in the SHOCK AND AWE bombing of my country this past year but talk about WEAPONS OF MASS DESTRUCTION? I'm glad that they weren't in the hands of an irresponsible person.

I am an Iraqi citizen who has just left Baghdad to live with my uncle in London after Mr. Bush liberated my country.

My parents were freed from Saddam Hussein's brutal regime when they were killed in a crossfire between insurgents and the American soldiers. Then my brother joined them yesterday when he was freed from his tyranny after being ripped asunder from a hand grenade that detonated in his school yard. The rest of my relatives in Iraq are waiting to be liberated so they can join my parents and brother in heaven too.

Thank God Mr. Bush prevailed over the United Nations who had refused to sanction the invasion of my country by U. S. forces. Although my country is decimated and in shambles now from the war and occupation by the Americans, we are FREE AT LAST!

In gratitude...An Iraqi citizen.

David A. Whelan

Forest Knolls, CA 94933

To American Voters-A Plea

Before you cast your vote in the 2004 primaries, I urge you to take another look at the candidacy of Howard Dean. Please make up your own mind and not let the media and the Democratic establishment vote for you. Please check out the following facts-don't take my word for it but do your own research.

"Dean supporters are latte drinking, Volvo driving, professional liberal elitists."

I am a 57 year old single woman. I work in a non-union automotive parts plant in NH. My plant is in the process of moving our parts to Mexico, Canada and other parts of the US. The machines and parts are being moved bit by bit so that the company won't have to provide job training and other benefits that they are required by law to provide if the plant closed out right. After 27 years of working for this company, I will be laid off. We used to be able to keep our health insurance for a year after being laid off. Now our health insurance ends at midnight on the day we are let go. Being 57 and unskilled, I imagine my next job will be for minimum wage. I won't be able to get health insurance as I have two leaking heart valves - this is not good as there are only two heart valves to a customer. Thank you Corporate America.

"Dean is Unelectable"

Dean is the most electable of all the candidates: Research by a Republican pollster last summer showed Dean the most formidable of all the candidates. It cited his integrity. His support amongst disenfranchised Democrats, Independents, Republicans, former Nadar supporters and Conservatives (who are alarmed by the budget deficit). It also stated that he would be formidable because he is sincere and believes in what he says. He is also the only major candidate to stand up to Bush about the war, No Child left behind and the tax cuts.

There are no skeletons in Dean's closet

When is the last time a candidate for National office was backed by his entire state? Remember Clinton? He was trashed by many politicians in Arkansas. Dean has the support of Republicans and Democrats in Vermont. Even the Republican governor of Vermont says that Dean left the state in great shape. Have you heard of any bashing of Dean done by Vermont politicians? No, because while they may have disagreed with him on some of the issues, they know Dean better than most of us and respect and admire him.

"Dean is Angry"

A little common sense please - He not only served 12 years as Governor but was a doctor before that. Does this sound like a crazy angry man to you?

The Media tried to portray Dean as not fit to be president by airing the "Iowa Scream" 700 times between the Iowa and NH primaries. The tape did not show the view and sound from the floor. 3500 Dean Supporters screaming and yelling. Dean had to yell so that he could be heard. Speaking of that speech. Yes, I guess as far as conventional wisdom goes, it was unpresidential (whatever that may mean) but was it the ranting of a madman? Hardly - he was rallying his dedicated supporters who believe in him had worked so very hard to get him a victory. They felt that it was their fault that he lost Iowa.

"Dean is Extreme"

Dean provided health care to all children in Vermont and the working poor.

He delivered a real prescription drug benefit for Vermont seniors.

Dean implemented the "Success by Six" program which cut the child abuse rate by 43% and the child sex abuse rate by 70%.

Dean raised the minimum wage

Dean Lowered taxes twice

Dean balanced the state budget 11 years in a row. Took Vermont from a major deficit to a surplus. Now "Vermont has one of the highest bond ratings in the country"

Dean preserved over 8% of Vermont lands. This land can never be developed.

Dean backed the first gulf war and the Afghanistan war.

Dean is a centrist and was praised by the DLC as being a moderate governor when he governed Vermont. Dean never joined the DLC because of their corporate agenda. When Dean ran for president The DLC bashed Dean for over a year and actively crowed and kicked him when he fell from the polls. Wesley Clark recently admitted on the Charlie Rose show that the Clinton's and the DLC urged him to get into the race to "Stop Dean" What's up with that?

I have never participated in politics before, never donated or even voted before as I never thought that it would make a difference. I was flipping through the channels one day and stumbled across Dean's announcement speech "The Great American Restoration Speech" I was blown away. Here was a real person saying things that I knew to be true.

Posted by Kitty at February 14, 2004 08:39 p.m., New Hampshire.

Dean Can Still Make A Difference

I think I can safely assume that everyone is aware that Governor Dean has ended his active campaign for the Presidency.

Here are some things that I took from his message (what I heard of it, as the networks decided to interrupt for fascinating commentary!): The fight for his message and agenda will continue, and he will form an organization to most likely advertise and campaign for said message in the hope of moving the platform of the Democratic party to a more progressive stance, which supports the needs of average Americans, rather than the maintaining of power for the current establishment. He asked that we not support a 3rd party candidate adding that he will not seek nor accept the nomination of any 3rd party or as an independent. Most importantly he noted that he is still on the ballot in every state, and that we should continue to support him in the upcoming primaries and caucuses.

As always, I would like the input of the group as to our direction. Here are my thoughts: First, let me make very clear that we will not give, raise nor spend ANY of our money to support Senators Kerry or Edwards. I submit that we consider strongly continuing our efforts to spread the word both one on one and in the media that a vote for Dean helps this cause, this message by sending delegates to Boston who will support our agenda, Governor Dean's agenda, and the greater the number the greater than influence in, the greater the chance of effecting real change in the Democratic Party. I support this above considering forming a 3rd party, as we have a party which is already established, we need only change it's heart and soul...and leadership.

This is a tall order, but the alternative is to go quietly into the night. I would consider making a swift effort to get on the air in Idaho, Utah and Hawaii - if the will and money is there, as well as the logistics. Beyond that, we have begun to raise funds for the Super Tuesday states, which can still be allocated to that effort. This is my suggestion going forward, that we continue to grow and support this movement, lest it fade and the establishment win. We know full well that the message which has been trumped by the leading Democratic candidates is not truly in their heart, but if it can become the leading message of the party, if we can send enough delegates to show that Dean's movement is the swing vote which could win the Presidency (remember how close 2000 was) they will have to listen, have to support our platform.

I believe this should be our continuing effort, which we can revisit when one of the following happens: Governor Dean officially endorses a candidate for the office of President, Governor Dean or a representative of his organization officially asks us to change our efforts or focus or the Primary and caucus season ends July 29 in Boston with an official nominee (my birthday, not going to be much of a present it seems!). If one of these events occurs, I commit that we will not suddenly begin to support the Democratic nominee, as our funds are raised to support Governor Dean's message and carry on his movement only. At the time of such an occurrence, we will as a group decide which direction to take. Beyond that, there are candidates and potential candidates to support in races around the country in the ongoing effort to change the Democratic Party and change America.

My personal intention is that on March 2, I will vote for Howard Dean in the California Primary as my choice for President. After that, I will change my party affiliation, until such time as the Democratic Party supports a platform which I believe in.

Please share your thoughts and feelings regarding TruthandHope's future, so we can build a consensus and move forward.

Thank you for all you have done and still do,

Eugene Hedlund



Weapons Of Deception

Just think if 911 had not happened? Bush and his administration would have nothing to talk about. They knew something was coming down but in order for them to get their way with the American people it had to happen. Not to mention it would be a way to give his Corporate backers Billions and Millions of our tax dollars on defense spending. While the poor working class is getting shot up fighting their WAR. They are creating mass hysteria to run their campaign on their own "WEAPONS OF MASS DECEPTION."

Bruce Carlton

Mill Valley

Your Article Is A Joke

"Joke: No Child Left Behind", is an embarrassment to everyone who reads it.

Regardless of our political leanings, or our social desires, civilized adults do not speak in the childish, and churlish manner of Greg Palast. His behavior turns the reader against him and his point of view.

The fact that you published the article indicates that you have the same stupid infantile point of view as the author.

That's not very productive for a Democratic victory in the fall.

Marshall Lyons

[email protected]

Editor's note: Thanks for your submission to the Coastal Post. What article are you talking about? Not the one we published. You obviously don't have any experience whatsoever with the children being targeted with this tragic step backward in American education.

Don Deane


Lyons' Response

What I am talking about is the inappropriate, unsubstantiated nasty name calling and generally immature attitudes and words. This manner of insanity completely negates any point that you want the reader to hear.

I do not disagree about the needs of our children.

After reading your article, I strongly disagree with the manner in which you presented it.

You, and most children, are not effective in your communication. Grow up and contribute, with wisdom and inspiring words, to this world.

Marshall Lyons

[email protected]

Editor's Note: Now my words are childish, too? Whew... you're an idiot?

Kerry Was Fooled

Howard Dean came into campaigning courageously questioning the Iraq war. John Kerry came professing, "We were all fooled" by Bush, explaining Kerry's pro-war vote.

February 12th Sen. Robert Byrd made his "This chamber is for the most part silent-ominously" speech to rouse questions from Democratic colleagues. Among the silent, Sen. Kerry.

February 27th diplomat John Brady Kiesling resigned his post over Bush's pending preemptive war on Iraq. Kiesling's publicized letter said, "Our current course will bring instability and danger, not security."

Among Kerry's constituents are M. I. T. linguist Noam Chomsky and historian Howard Zinn. August 19, 2002, Zinn's article, "The Case Against War on Iraq" made The Boston Globe. Its first sentence: "The Bush Administration's plan for preemptive war against Iraq so flagrantly violates both international law and common morality that we need a real national debate." Chomsky publicly questioned the war. Kerry fooled or Kerry complacent?

Kerry's campaign "makeover" took the considerable skills of Jean Shaheen-or would Kerry still trail Dean, whose messages are more substantive than Kerry's trumpeted pronouncements? Is Kerry so much a viable candidate to beat Bush, as he is strategically packaged? Kerry, among all senators, has taken the most special interest money. Read "Cash and Kerry," in Feb. 9th Newsweek.

Our best candidate is Gov. Howard Dean, socially liberal, fiscally conservative, direct speaking. His five gubernatorial terms prove public trust. He's taking a beating from the establishment - saying worlds for his integrity. Vote for Kerry and get Washington as usual. Vote for Dean and take back America.

Lynn R. Chong

Sanbornton, NH


A classic Bush oxymoron

Cutting down the trees

To save the forests

Clear-cutting will stop fires

Another Bush/Cheney con job

Will Gov. Schwarzenegger follow suit

Ron Lowe

Nevada City

Republican Wedgies

Conservative Republicans are using gay marriage as a wedge issue to further polarize and divide America, much the same as they use abortion. Does anybody's marriage affect your marriage; whose business is it anyway?

Does the religious right worry or care that I'm heterosexual with six daughters? No, which shows that the latest attack by the pompous and self-righteous church establishment is really about bigoted discrimination. Is this a question about the sanctity of marriage or is it more about ingrained hatred for gays?

Ron Lowe

Nevada City

Letter To Move On Members And Watchers

MoveOn is now over two million people strong in the United States. That's a huge number: the organization we've built together is bigger than the Christian Coalition at its peak. To put it another way, one in every 146 Americans is now a MoveOn member. And we're still growing fast.

And what we're doing together is even more exciting. For decades, parts of our political system have been sold to the highest bidder, with corporate donors winning out over the public interest. But on Friday, we finished our $10 million Voter Fund grassroots fundraising campaign without a dime from corporations or special interests. In the end, over 170,000 people opened their checkbooks and contributed an average of about $60 to put ads on the air that challenge Bush and his corporate backers. The impact of this campaign shouldn't be underestimated: it clearly demonstrates that real people still matter in American politics. And the folks in Washington know it.

Political giving is almost always a quid-pro-quo business: corporate lobbyists trade money for policy, the wealthy trade money for access to politicians. MoveOn members aren't asking for anything but their democracy back, and that kind of generosity is pretty rare. When we hear about the families who saved up to make a $25 donation, or think of the thousands of folks who mailed in $5 checks, we know this is something amazing and new that we're a part of.

And money's only part of the equation: our phone calls and emails helped win a real victory last week. After CBS rejected our Voter Fund's Super Bowl ad, we learned that the White House was being allowed to air an advocacy ad about Medicare. We told you about it, and in just a few days over 50,000 MoveOn members called and emailed to complain. On Friday, CBS pulled the ad, stating that it had violated their policy. It's a big win, and a powerful blow to the Bush Administration's campaign to cover up its Medicare sellout.

This tidal wave of engagement and activism isn't exclusive to MoveOn, of course. Every leader of every organization we run into sees the same thing. Across the country, from labor unions like the SEIU to Greenpeace to the ACLU, people are standing up and getting active. President Bush told us he was a uniter, and he was right: he's uniting people across America to fight back for our country.

As this movement gains momentum and visibility, many of these organizations will inevitably become targets for Republican attacks. We've already seen some of the smear tactics the right will use. When their situation becomes even more dire, we know they'll strike hard at MoveOn and the groups we stand with -- a campaign of intimidation fueled by President Bush's $150 million war chest.

But this new democratic groundswell draws its strength from the hopes of millions of people, standing up and taking action for a better country and a better world. We simply refuse to let lobbyists, attack politics and fear-mongering destroy our democracy. And against the courage and conviction of real people, even Karl Rove and $150 million can't do much.

Thank you for your hope, your generosity, and your willingness to speak out. Together, we're taking our country back.


--Adam, Carrie, Eli, James, Joan, Laura, Noah, Peter, Wes, and Zack

The Team

February 16th, 2004

Reasons For War

Please note the six reasons for going to war that are contained in the President's remarks at the United Nations General Assembly in New York. Seems to me that finding weapons of mass destruction is about 1/6th the reason for the war.

1."...If the Iraqi regime wishes peace, it will immediately and unconditionally forswear, disclose, and remove or destroy all weapons of mass destruction, long-range missiles, and all related material.

2. If the Iraqi regime wishes peace, it will immediately end all support for terrorism and act to suppress it, as all states are required to do by UN Security Council resolutions.

3. If the Iraqi regime wishes peace, it will cease persecution of its civilian population, including Shi'a, Sunnis, Kurds, Turkomans, and others, again as required by Security Council resolutions.

4. If the Iraqi regime wishes peace, it will release or account for all Gulf War personnel whose fate is still unknown. It will return the remains of any who are deceased, return stolen property, accept liability for losses resulting from the invasion of Kuwait, and fully cooperate with international efforts to resolve these issues, as required by Security Council resolutions.

5. If the Iraqi regime wishes peace, it will immediately end all illicit trade outside the oil-for-food program. It will accept UN administration of funds from that program, to ensure that the money is used fairly and promptly for the benefit of the Iraqi people.

6. If all these steps are taken, it will signal a new openness and accountability in Iraq. And it could open the prospect of the United Nations helping to build a government that represents all Iraqis -- a government based on respect for human rights, economic liberty, and internationally supervised elections. "

Peter Bauer

San Rafael

Changes In Bay Area Smog

Nicely written, very informative. (Wish I could write like that.) I'm just finishing my take on the new program for an article in my magazine. It will focus on a significantly different aspect than that of Mr./Mrs. (excuse my ignorance, but I've never heard the name Einar before) Dale's article.

While my politics are undoubtedly different than most Coastal Post readers, this new program needs scrutiny. There's got to be a better way.


John Hess

Publisher/Editor, Cool Profit$ Magazine


Solution To The Conflict Between Palestine and Israel:

There can be only one solution to the conflict between the Palestinians and the Israelis -- Forced intervention and separation.

The framework and mandated legal basis for peace between Palestine and Israel already exists: International law in the form of United Nations Security Council Resolutions, backed by a host of UN General Assembly Resolutions, addressing specific elements and issues between the parties, that spell out in detail what is required of each side. The singular problem remains getting both sides to cease the hostilities and accept what is required of each as detailed in these UN resolutions. And there is a method in place to do just that, force -- equally and without prejudice -- both sides to comply fully with international law; thereby providing peace, security and economic opportunity for both sides living side-by-side in peaceful coexistence and within the expanded Middle East region.

Forget every facet of the conflict from either perspective. Forget the biases and tallies on who is pro-Palestinian, or pro-Israeli. Neutralize the Arab threats declaring the destruction of Israel. Neutralize the Israeli designs to eliminate every single non-Jew west of the Jordan River. Forget the argument occupied vs. disputed, provocation vs. retaliation, all of it.

Every point of contention between Palestine and Israel is dealt with in detail by specific UN Security Council Resolutions (a.k.a. International Law and the enforcing of such) and the problem then becomes neutralizing each sides pretensions and ulterior motives and forging -- forcing -- the international demand for peace and adherence to international law equally by both sides.

Because of many reasons, peace and conciliation between Palestine and Israel is out of the question and this task must be taken out of their hands. To get both sides separated and peace in place, the United Nations must impose strict and binding sanctions against both sides and impose strict international isolation of both Palestine and Israel until all UN Resolutions relative to the conflict between Israel and Palestine are agreed to and accepted and complied with willingly by both sides. Both sides must be isolated from all activity and contact with the international community of nations until all resolutions are fully accepted in their entirety and peaceful co-existence pledged.

International law must prevail and must be enforced. The Quartet Road Map, Oslo Agreement, Geneva Accord, One State Solution, Wye River, Camp David, none of it is relevant. They were all contrived as a means to detract from the fact that neither side, including the highly prejudiced United States and the suspect Israeli government, wanted to abide by the requirements of international law and demands for peace and chose instead to use diversionary tactics such as the ill-conceived instruments above and doomed for failure demands for negotiations between Palestine and Israel, as roadblocks circumventing and supplanting acceptance and adherence to lawful requirements as spelled out by the United Nations since Partition.

The collusion and influence of the United States is the true detriment to peace in the Middle East and must be neutralized in this process. Peace will only be achieved by the United Nations declaring that each side, Palestinian and Israeli alike, accept and comply with all UN Resolutions and failure to do so will result in immediate sanctions and complete international isolation against the offending/failing government, until all obligations and lawful requirements are met, fully and without limitation.

Patrick Johnston

Wrong About Mel Gibson

Jews who want to crucify Mel Gibson (producer/director of the new movie "The Passion of Christ") for remarks putting the Holocaust in context are wrong.

The Nazis killed 6 million Jews in concentration camps and rural ditches. The Nazis also killed 6 million disabled, gays, Roma (gypsies), and political opponents. They worked slave laborers from the East to death. These are no less crimes than killing Jews.

In the 20th century, more millions of civilians died in the USSR, Cambodia, China, Ruanda-Burundi, India, Pakistan, the Balkans, and many other places, deliberately killed because of their religion, race, class, caste, tribe or political leanings.

In millennia past, many more victims were massacred by conquerors. Jews have no monopoly on suffering, Nazis no monopoly on terror.

It is wrong everywhere whenever people are suspected and persecuted because of their religion, race, class, caste, tribe or political leanings. We must recognize and fight any such tendency in other countries, and especially in our own country and our own heart.

tOM Trottier

Ottawa, Canada





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