Monday, December 31, 2007

Alert: Join Wexler in Calling for Impeachment, Facebook Groups Extension, and More

Hi, Impeachment Person--
Here's something we can do:

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: The Pen <>
Date: Dec 30, 2007 1:20 AM
Subject: Alert: Join Wexler in Calling for Impeachment, Facebook
Groups Extension, and More

People Are Starting To Really Speak Out Now On Impeachment

The Kucinich resolution, H.Res. 799, to impeach Cheney first is
gathering more and more support as the national impeachment continues
to grow, after being referred to the House Judiciary Committee last

And as a member of that committee, Representative Robert Wexler and
two other committee members, Gutierrez and Baldwin, have joined
together in demanding action now.

Regular Action Form:

Facebook Version: (for this
one, you must be a member of and logged in)

Congressman Robert Wexler says it on his website, "The charges are
too serious to ignore. There is credible evidence that the Vice
President abused the power of his office, and not only brought us
into an unnecessary war but violated the civil liberties and privacy
of American citizens. It is the constitutional duty of Congress to
hold impeachment hearings" This special action page will add you name
to the sign ups on the Wexler site, where he has more than 150,000 of
his own submissions already.

If you have already submitted at the Wexler site, as many of our
participants have, please uncheck the corresponding box on the action
page, but still send your message reiterating the call for
impeachment hearings to your own members of Congress.

New Facebook Groups Extension To Spread The Activism

For those of you who are members of Facebook groups, we debut in this
alert what we believe is the first function extender for Facebook
Groups, provided by the Voices application for Facebook.

If you go to the Facebook version of the action page, if any of the
groups you are a member of have not yet added the action page, there
will be an extra link on the action page, "Add to Groups". This will
send your message to the admins of your groups asking them to engage
in this action too, and make it visible to all their group members.

If you are a Facebook group admin yourself, and want to see what the
action page index extension would look like in the context of your
own group, please click on the same link and you will get message
directing you to your new index page will added admin controls.

Facebook Version: (for this
one, you must be a member of and logged in)

In the same way, when you create an action page with the original
Voices application you will also be able to designate groups to
submit it too, and then do so when you get it just how you like it.
What this gives you is not just the power to create your own actions
on any issue you care about, but also an effective way to propagate
your action by virtue of their own 50 million plus participant base.

Try out all these new functions, and if you need any help, or want to
suggest other features you would like to see there, please use the
help links on the various pages to do so. Or email us directly back

Please take action NOW, so we can win all victories that are supposed
to be ours, and refer this alert to all you know.

If you would like to get alerts like these, you can do so at

Or if you want to cease receiving our messages, just use the function


Powered by The People's Email Network Copyright 2007, Patent pending,
All rights reserved

Sunday, December 30, 2007

Ray McGovern: a lesson from fascist history

Hi, Impeachment Person,
I know it's Sunday and tomorrow is New Year's Eve. I've been trying to
restrain myself for the last week because holidays really do belong to
families. BUT this article, which Harold Burbank forwarded, leaves me
unable to wait until New Year's Day goes by for two reasons:
1) It aims right between the 1 and 3 pin. Bush's fascist project
really did start 7 months before 9/11, Nancy Pelosi was in on it from
the beginning, the unconstitutionality is open and flagrant, and the
whole thing is a repeat of the Nazi pattern in the early 30's--hope
you are reading Naomi Wolf's "The End of America"--and
2) No one is more qualified to identify such a pattern than Ray McGovern.

So if we want to have a new year that is better than this one, we
can't wimp out as the year draws to a close. I'll start sending you
some of the backlog I've been saving.


Creeping Fascism: History's Lessons

By Ray McGovern
"There are few things as odd as the calm, superior indifference with
which I and those like me watched the beginnings of the Nazi
revolution in Germany, as if from a box at the theater. ... Perhaps
the only comparably odd thing is the way that now, years later...."
12/28/07 "ICH" -- -- These are the words of Sebastian Haffner (pen
name for Raimund Pretzel), who as a young lawyer in Berlin during the
1930s experienced the Nazi takeover and wrote a first-hand account.
His children found the manuscript when he died in 1999 and published
it the following year as "Geschichte eines Deutschen" (The Story of a
The book became an immediate bestseller and has been translated into
20 languages—in English as "Defying Hitler."
I recently learned from his daughter Sarah, an artist in Berlin, that
today is the 100th anniversary of Haffner's birth. She had seen an
earlier article in which I quoted her father and e-mailed to ask me to
"write some more about the book and the comparison to Bush's America.
... This is almost unbelievable."
More about Haffner below. Let's set the stage first by recapping some
of what has been going on that may have resonance for readers familiar
with the Nazi ascendancy, noting how "odd" it is that the frontal
attack on our Constitutional rights is met with such "calm, superior
Goebbels Would be Proud
It has been two years since top New York Times officials decided to
let the rest of us in on the fact that the George W. Bush
administration had been eavesdropping on American citizens without the
court warrants required by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act
(FISA) of 1978.
The Times had learned of this well before the election in 2004 and
acquiesced to White House entreaties to suppress the damaging
In late fall 2005 when Times correspondent James Risen's book, "State
of War: the Secret History of the CIA and the Bush Administration,"
revealing the warrantless eavesdropping was being printed, Times
publisher, Arthur Sulzberger, Jr., recognized that he could
procrastinate no longer.
It would simply be too embarrassing to have Risen's book on the
street, with Sulzberger and his associates pretending that this
explosive eavesdropping story did not fit Adolph Ochs's trademark
criterion: All The News That's Fit To Print.
(The Times' own ombudsman, Public Editor Byron Calame, branded the
newspaper's explanation for the long delay in publishing this story
"woefully inadequate.")
When Sulzberger told his friends in the White House that he could no
longer hold off on publishing in the newspaper, he was summoned to the
Oval Office for a counseling session with the president on Dec. 5,
2005. Bush tried in vain to talk him out of putting the story in the
The truth would out; part of it, at least.
There were some embarrassing glitches. For example, unfortunately for
National Security Agency Director Lt. Gen. Keith Alexander, the White
House neglected to tell him that the cat would soon be out of the bag.
So on Dec. 6, Alexander spoke from the old talking points in assuring
visiting House intelligence committee member Rush Holt, D-New Jersey,
that the NSA did not eavesdrop on Americans without a court order.
Still possessed of the quaint notion that generals and other senior
officials are not supposed to lie to congressional oversight
committees, Holt wrote a blistering letter to Gen. Alexander after the
Times, on Dec. 16, front-paged a feature by Risen and Eric Lichtblau,
"Bush Lets U.S. Spy on Callers Without Courts."
But House Intelligence Committee chair Pete Hoekstra, R-Michigan,
apparently found Holt's scruples benighted; Hoekstra did nothing to
hold Alexander accountable for misleading Holt, his most experienced
committee member, who had served as an intelligence analyst at the
State Department.
What followed struck me as bizarre. The day after the Dec. 16 Times
feature article, the president of the United States publicly admitted
to a demonstrably impeachable offense.
Authorizing illegal electronic surveillance was a key provision of the
second article of impeachment against President Richard Nixon. On July
27, 1974, this and two other articles of impeachment were approved by
bipartisan votes in the House Judiciary Committee.
Bush Takes Frontal Approach
Far from expressing regret, the president bragged about having
authorized the surveillance "more than 30 times since the September
the 11th attacks," and said he would continue to do so. The president
also said:
"Leaders in Congress have been briefed more than a dozen times on this
authorization and the activities conducted under it."
On Dec. 19, 2005, then-Attorney General Alberto Gonzales and then-NSA
Director Michael Hayden held a press conference to answer questions
about the as yet unnamed surveillance program.
Gonzales was asked why the White House decided to flout FISA rather
than attempt to amend it, choosing instead a "backdoor approach." He
"We have had discussions with to whether or not FISA
could be amended to allow us to adequately deal with this kind of
threat, and we were advised that that would be difficult, if not
Hmm. Impossible? It strains credulity that a program of the limited
scope described would be unable to win ready approval from a Congress
that had just passed the "Patriot Act" in record time.
James Risen has made the following quip about the prevailing mood: "In
October 2001, you could have set up guillotines on the public streets
of America."
It was not difficult to infer that the surveillance program must have
been of such scope and intrusiveness that, even amid highly stoked
fear, it didn't have a prayer for passage.
It turns out we didn't know the half of it.
What To Call These Activities
"Illegal Surveillance Program" didn't seem quite right for White House
purposes, and the PR machine was unusually slow off the blocks.
It took six weeks to settle on "Terrorist Surveillance Program," with
FOX News leading the way followed by the president himself. This
labeling would dovetail nicely with the president's rhetoric on Dec.
"In the weeks following the terrorist attacks on our nation, I
authorized the National Security Agency, consistent with U.S. law and
the Constitution, to intercept the international communications of
people with known links to al-Qaeda and related terrorist
organizations. ... The authorization I gave the National Security
Agency after September 11 helped address that problem..." [Emphasis
And Gen. Michael Hayden, who headed NSA from 1999 to 2005, was of
course on the same page, dissembling as convincingly as the president.
At his May 2006 confirmation hearings to become CIA director, he told
of his soul-searching when, as director of NSA, he was asked to
eavesdrop on Americans without a court warrant.
"I had to make this personal decision in early October 2001," said
Hayden. "It was a personal decision. ... I could not not do this."
Like so much else, it was all because of 9/11. But we now know...
It Started Seven Months Before 9/11.
How many times have you heard it? The mantra "after 9/11 everything
changed" has given absolution to all manner of sin.
We are understandably reluctant to believe the worst of our leaders,
and this tends to make us negligent. After all, we learned from former
Treasury Secretary Paul O'Neill that drastic changes were made in U.S.
foreign policy toward the Israeli-Palestinian issue and toward Iraq at
the first National Security Council meeting on Jan. 30, 2001.
Should we not have anticipated far-reaching changes at home as well?
Reporting by the Rocky Mountain News and court documents and testimony
on a case involving Qwest strongly suggest that in February 2001
Hayden saluted smartly when the Bush administration instructed NSA to
suborn AT&T, Verizon, and Qwest to spy illegally on you, me, and other
Bear in mind that this would have had nothing to do with terrorism,
which did not really appear on the new administration's radar screen
until a week before 9/11, despite the pleading of Clinton aides that
the issue deserved extremely high priority.
So this until-recently-unknown pre-9/11 facet of the "Terrorist
Surveillance Program" was not related to Osama bin Laden or to
whomever he and his associates might be speaking. It had to do with
We know that the Democrats briefed on the "Terrorist Surveillance
Program" include House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-California, (the one
with the longest tenure on the House Intelligence Committee), Rep.
Jane Harman, D-California, and former and current chairmen of the
Senate Intelligence Committee, Bob Graham, D-Florida, and Jay
Rockefeller, D-West Virginia, respectively.
May one interpret their lack of public comment on the news that the
snooping began well before 9/11 as a sign they were co-opted and then
sworn to secrecy?
It is an important question. Were the appropriate leaders in Congress
informed that within days of George W. Bush's first inauguration the
NSA electronic vacuum cleaner began to suck up information on you and
me, despite the FISA law and the Fourth Amendment?
Are They All Complicit?
And are Democratic leaders about to cave in and grant retroactive
immunity to those telecommunications corporations—AT&T and
Verizon—which made millions by winking at the law and the
(Qwest, to its credit, heeded the advice of its general counsel who
said that what NSA wanted done was clearly illegal.)
What's going on here? Have congressional leaders no sense for what is at stake?
Lately the adjective "spineless" has come into vogue in describing
congressional Democrats—no offense to invertebrates.
Nazis and Their Enablers
You don't have to be a Nazi. You can just be, well, a sheep.
In his journal, Sebastian Haffner decries what he calls the "sheepish
submissiveness" with which the German people reacted to a 9/11-like
event, the burning of the German Parliament (Reichstag) on Feb. 27,
Haffner finds it quite telling that none of his acquaintances "saw
anything out of the ordinary in the fact that, from then on, one's
telephone would be tapped, one's letters opened, and one's desk might
be broken into."
But it is for the cowardly politicians that Haffner reserves his most
vehement condemnation. Do you see any contemporary parallels here?
In the elections of March 4, 1933, shortly after the Reichstag fire,
the Nazi party garnered only 44 percent of the vote. Only the
"cowardly treachery" of the Social Democrats and other parties to whom
56 percent of the German people had entrusted their votes made it
possible for the Nazis to seize full power. Haffner adds:
"It is in the final analysis only that betrayal that explains the
almost inexplicable fact that a great nation, which cannot have
consisted entirely of cowards, fell into ignominy without a fight."
The Social Democratic leaders betrayed their followers—"for the most
part decent, unimportant individuals." In May, the party leaders sang
the Nazi anthem; in June the Social Democratic party was dissolved.
The middle-class Catholic party Zentrum folded in less than a month,
and in the end supplied the votes necessary for the two-thirds
majority that "legalized" Hitler's dictatorship.
As for the right-wing conservatives and German nationalists: "Oh God,"
writes Haffner, "what an infinitely dishonorable and cowardly
spectacle their leaders made in 1933 and continued to make afterward.
... They went along with everything: the terror, the persecution of
Jews. ... They were not even bothered when their own party was banned
and their own members arrested."
In sum: "There was not a single example of energetic defense, of
courage or principle. There was only panic, flight, and desertion. In
March 1933, millions were ready to fight the Nazis. Overnight they
found themselves without leaders. ... At the moment of truth, when
other nations rise spontaneously to the occasion, the Germans
collectively and limply collapsed. They yielded and capitulated, and
suffered a nervous breakdown. ... The result is today the nightmare of
the rest of the world."
This is what can happen when virtually all are intimidated.
Our Founding Fathers were not oblivious to this; thus, James Madison:
"I believe there are more instances of the abridgement of freedom of
the people by gradual and silent encroachments by those in power than
by violent and sudden usurpations. ... The means of defense against
foreign danger historically have become the instruments of tyranny at
We cannot say we weren't warned.
Ray McGovern works with Tell the Word, the publishing arm of the
ecumenical Church of the Saviour in Washington, DC. He was an Army
officer and then a C.I.A. analyst for 27 years, and now serves on the
Steering Group of Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity
This article was first published in the Baltimore Chronicle

Thursday, December 20, 2007

To Impeach or Not to Impeach: Conyers, Wexler, McGovern

Ralph Nazareth found Amy Goodman and Juan Ganzales interviewing
Conyers, Wexler, McGovern at the same time:

To Impeach or Not to Impeach? A Discussion with House Judiciary Chair
John Conyers and CIA Veteran Ray McGovern

Three Democratic members of the House Judiciary Committee—Robert Wexler
of Florida, Luis Gutierrez of Illinois, and Tammy Baldwin of
Wisconsin—have called on committee chair John Conyers to begin
impeachment hearings against Vice President Dick Cheney. We host a
discussion on impeachment with Conyers and former CIA analyst Ray
McGovern. [includes rush transcript]

AMY GOODMAN: Congressman Conyers, I
wanted to turn to another controversial issue, one that you've been
dealing with and have over time, that issue of impeachment. Now, three
Democratic members of your committee, of the House Judiciary
Committee—Robert Wexler of Florida, Luis Gutierrez of Illinois, Tammy
Baldwin of Wisconsin—have called on you to begin impeachment hearings
against Vice President Dick Cheney. This week, Congressman Wexler said
the charges against the Vice President are too serious to ignore.

REP. ROBERT WEXLER: It is time for the House Judiciary Committee to
hold impeachment hearings for Vice President Cheney. We have an
obligation to ask questions, to determine whether in fact the Vice
President purposefully manipulated intelligence, bringing us into war,
whether he knowingly ordered the illegal use of torture, whether he
knowingly exposed covert agents for political purposes, whether he
obstructed federal investigations. These charges are too serious to

AMY GOODMAN: Since last week, over 100,000 people have signed a
petition on Congressman Wexler's website supporting impeachment
hearings. And we're wondering, Congressman Conyers, now with your
committee members taking up this issue, an issue that you actually long
championed, what your feelings are today. Will you be supporting them
in this?

REP. JOHN CONYERS: Well, no, but there are a lot of things that can and
will be done. We're documenting the transgressions and errors of the
administration in the Department of Justice, which have led to the
firing of nine US attorneys. We're looking at the protections of the
right to vote. The election is coming up. We've got to protect
everybody's right to get out here and make a choice and make sure that
it's counted.

AMY GOODMAN: Why stop short of hearings on impeachment?

REP. JOHN CONYERS: Well, because, unless we're going to impeach the
Vice President and the President within this space of time, I think we
could be very seriously compromising the greatest important—most
important thing, in addition to documenting any misdeeds that may have
happened, whether we continue to have Bush enablers continue to shatter
and tear the Constitution to shreds. And so, all of this, academically,
is great. I've got a number of books from my friends about which
articles would be best and which ones we should go after more. But it
seems to me that the time element and also the feasibility of whether
or not there is any possible chance of success—there is a very stark
reality that with the corporatization of the media, we could end up
with turning people who should be documented in history as making many
profound errors and violating the Constitution from villains into
victims. And those are the kinds of considerations that have entered my
mind in thinking about this process, Amy.

JUAN GONZALEZ: And, Ray McGovern, you've been outspoken on this issue,
and given the new evidence now about the destruction of the CIA tapes
and the White House staff—some staff involvement in that, your sense of
the impeachment situation?

RAY McGOVERN: Well, we not only have the obstruction of justice, but we
have the President's former spokesman saying that he was involved in
the outing of Valerie Plame. We also have the President threatening
World War III on bogus evidence that Iran was developing a nuclear
weapons development program. So, you know, it's sort of like outreach
fatigue. Where do you begin?

Well, where I would begin is with the demonstrably impeachable
offenses—first and foremost, the President's not only admission, but
his bragging about violating laws against eavesdropping on Americans
without a court warrant. He bragged that he did that thirty times. That
was one of the articles of impeachment voted against President Nixon.
Similarly, disregarding subpoenas, that, too, was one of the articles
voted against President Nixon in the Judiciary Committee, where
Congressman Conyers, of course, served very loyally. So you have those
two right there.

And that's not even mentioning, you know, forging, manufacturing,
coming up with false intelligence to deceive congressmen and senators
out of their constitutional prerogative to declare or to otherwise
authorize war. I mean, it doesn't get any worse than that. And so, my
sense is that our founders are probably turning over in their grave at
this point, because they put the impeachment clause in the declarative
mood, not the subjunctive mood. They didn't say that—

JUAN GONZALEZ: But, Ray McGovern, what about the argument that
Congressman Conyers raises that given the short amount of time left in
the term of the President and the difficulty of actually being able to
vote out an impeachment, that it would divert much of the attention of
the Democratic Party in a way that would not necessarily lead to

RAY McGOVERN: I think what I hear Congressman Conyers saying is that
Fox News would have a field day if he didn't get 218 votes right off
the bat. That is not an explanation, in my view. If you read Article
II, Section 4 of the Constitution, which I think should be the document
we abide by, it says the President, Vice President, other senior
officials shall be removed from office upon impeachment for and
conviction of high crimes and misdemeanors. Congressman Conyers and his
staff, a year ago, came up with a 350-page indictment of all the
offenses against the Constitution that Bush had already been guilty of.
So I don't really understand the delay.

I'm wondering if there isn't some sort of crass political reason for
it, namely, don't make any waves. The President's numbers are in the
toilet. The Vice President's numbers are flushed down the toilet. Just
don't do anything at all, so that Fox News will have nothing to seize
upon in accusing the Democrats of being divisive or something like
that. I don't think that's the right constitutional approach, and I
feel very strongly about that, and many of my colleagues do, as well.

AMY GOODMAN: Congressman Conyers, more than 100,000 people signed the
impeachment petition on Congressman Wexler, your colleague in the House
Judiciary Committee's website. Your response to this growing call in
the United States?

REP. JOHN CONYERS: Well, I've been monitoring the growing call. I've
been going to many meetings to talk about this. But this isn't a Fox 2
event. As bad as they may be, it doesn't mean that the rest of them
won't chime in, as well. And I think that that has a great deal to do
with whether we're going to continue Bush enablers in the White House,
and, to me, that is not a small event. And the Constitution doesn't
read into us the other considerations of timing, whether you have the
votes, whether it will have a reverse effect. They didn't put all that
in, and for very good reason. And so, I'm hoping that we can continue
this discussion, but that what I'm doing this morning is holding
hearings to reveal the fact that there ought to be public knowledge of
what's going on in all these attempts at secret hearings on the
destruction of these tapes. And I think that will lead us—help lead us
to what we must ultimately do. So—

AMY GOODMAN: These numbers, Congressman Conyers, quickly, American
Research Group, 45% of Americans would back impeachment proceedings
against Bush, 54%—that's more than half the American people—would back
the same against Cheney. Your response?

REP. JOHN CONYERS: Well, I respect whoever they are, but I've got to
produce the votes inside the Congress, and that's where our first
battle is going to be. I had Ray McGovern in my first Downing Street
memos hearings in the basement a few years back, in which we revealed
that the war in Iraq was more preemptive than anything else. But
marching into history, I've got to put together a winning program and
not step on our message. We've got a lot of legislation to accomplish.
The minority party in the House has been—and the Senate, too—have been
very effective in preventing us from moving forward. And we've got—

AMY GOODMAN: Congressman Conyers, we're going to leave it there but go
to one of those issues that has been so troubling for so many in this
country, and that is what's happening in New Orleans. We're going to
turn to a piece now about the demolition of public housing. We want to
thank you very much, Chairman Conyers, for joining us, head of the
House Judiciary Committee, and Ray McGovern, longtime CIA analyst,
actually was the daily briefer for President Bush—that's President
George H.W. Bush when he was Vice President.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Rep. Wexler's Quarter Million Person Challenge / Blog Radio Announcement

Tomorrow night (Thursday) you can hear Wexler on the radio over the
internet at 9 pm:

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Robert Wexler <>
Date: Dec 19, 2007 4:40 PM
Subject: Rep. Wexler's Quarter Million Person Challenge / Blog Radio

Dear Richard,

We have already reached 100,000 supporters. Thank You.

Now We Need Each of You To Send an Email to Ten More People to Get
250,000 Signed Up at by the End of the Year.

I can guarantee that your 100,000 voices calling for impeachment
hearings will now be heard in Congress. Together, through our new
Quarter Million Person Challenge, let's now set a new goal of 250,000
Americans signing up to demand action.

It has been just 5 days since I called for impeachment hearings for
Vice-President Dick Cheney and already over 100,000 people - including
you - have answered that call by adding your name as an impeachment
supporter at This is a truly remarkable
response that demonstrates the power that average, everyday Americans
can have when we come together to pursue justice and accountability.

Never mind that the national media ignored my call and rejected an
op-ed that I wrote along with my Judiciary Colleagues Rep. Luis
Gutierrez (D-IL) and Tammy Baldwin (D-WI). The Netroots and citizen
activists like yourself are spreading our message and demanding

Quarter Million Person Challenge

Our movement continues to grow by the hour and the day. But, with the
media blackout, I need your help to grow our effort. With 100,000
supporters already signed-up, if each of you e-mail ten of your
friends (a "Chain-ey letter") about

the need for Cheney impeachment hearings we will reach over a million
Americans and perhaps we can reach a new goal of 250,000 signers by
the end of the year!!

Join Me Thursday Night on Blog Radio to Discuss Our Next Steps

On this Thursday at 9:00 p.m. (EST) and 6:00 (PST), please join me as
I appear on live on the Internet to discuss my efforts to convince
Congress to hold impeachment hearing.

Congressman Wexler Live on Blog Radio:

WHEN: Thursday, December 18, 9:00 pm (EST)/6:00 pm (PST)

WHERE: (a link will be posted at and


WHO: Rep. Wexler will appear live on Florida Progressive Radio with
host Kenneth Quinnell of the Florida Netroots Caucus, Bob Fertick of, as well as Dave Lindorf, author of "The Case for
Impeachment," and David Swanson with

More on the Media Blackout

The New York Times, Washington Post, LA Times, USA Today, and Boston
Globe have all rejected our op ed (though the Miami Herald just put an
edited version in its "Letters to the Editor" section). We have heard
from the editors of some of these publications and they are telling us
that they are getting overwhelmed with phone calls and letters of
complaint. (Well done everybody!)

In short - we need to keep the pressure on if this news will spread
far beyond the Netroots community.

With warm regards,

Congressman Robert Wexler

Paid for by "Wexler for Congress"

PO Box 810669
Boca Raton, FL 33481

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Wexler Wants Hearings! Let's follow through!

Hi, Impeachment Person!

On December 14 I sent you the good news that Robert Wexler, Luis
Gutierrez, and Tammy Baldwin are calling for hearings in the Judiciary
Committee. Wexler asked for 50,000 signatures on an internet petition.
Almost immediately he got 100,000. Now he's seeking 250,000. Bub
Feuer, who is running on an impeachment platform in the 1st district
of Massachusetts, exhorts us to follow through; see (1) below in
response to communicaiton from Wexler's office (2) below. The original
Dec 14 message is at (3) below for your reference.

Richard Duffee

Dear Friends,

Congressman Robert Wexler (D-FL) sits on the House Committee on the
Judiciary which was charged on 6 November by majority vote of the full
U.S. House of Representatives to take up H. Res. 799, f/k/a H. Res 333.
On 7 November, Congressman Wexler authored a strong letter to his 39
fellow committee members, and to the Committee's Chairman, Congressman
John Conyers, Jr., to immediately take up the full house majority
mandated impeachment investigations of Richard B. Cheney, VP.

His Judiciary Colleagues, Reps. Luis Gutierrez (D-IL) and Tammy
Baldwin (D-WI), both senior members of the U.S. Congress have now joined
him in taking further action with the committee. The national media
ignored their call and rejected an op-ed they penned to demand immediate

Below is an urgent Call to Action by Congressman Wexler. I implore
you to take ten more minutes out of your busy Holiday activities, Go To
and join me and 100,000 other Americans in signing onto Congressman
Wexler's call for immediate impeachment action against Dick Cheney, VP.

The pass this on to each of your e-lists. As Joe Trippi titled his
recent book on the Howard Dean Campaign, /The Next Revolution Will not
be Televised./ With major media blockage, this must be done only by
those of us on-line. Please show thanks and praise for these three
brave, senior members of Congress.

Bob Feuer.

> Dear Robert,
> _*We have already reached 100,000 supporters. Thank You. *
> _/Now We Need Each of You To Send an Email to Ten More People to Get
> 250,000 Signed Up at by the End of the Year/.
> I can guarantee that your 100,000 voices calling for impeachment
> hearings will now be heard in Congress. Together, through our new
> Quarter Million Person Challenge, let's now set a new goal of 250,000
> Americans signing up to demand action.
> It has been just 5 days since I called for impeachment hearings for
> Vice-President Dick Cheney and already over 100,000 people - including
> you - have answered that call by adding your name as an impeachment
> supporter at _www.WexlerWantsHearings.com_
> <>.
> This is a truly remarkable response that demonstrates the power that
> average, everyday Americans can have when we come together to pursue
> justice and accountability.
> Never mind that the national media ignored my call and rejected an
> op-ed that I wrote along with my Judiciary Colleagues Rep. Luis
> Gutierrez (D-IL) and Tammy Baldwin (D-WI). The Netroots and citizen
> activists like yourself are spreading our message and demanding action.
> *Quarter Million Person Challenge*
> Our movement continues to grow by the hour and the day. But, with the
> media blackout, I need your help to grow our effort. With 100,000
> supporters already signed-up, if each of you e-mail ten of your
> friends (a "Chain-ey letter") about _www.WexlerWantsHearings.com_
> <>
> and the need for Cheney impeachment hearings we will reach over a
> million Americans and perhaps we can reach a new goal of 250,000
> signers by the end of the year!!
> *Join Me Thursday Night on Blog Radio to Discuss Our Next Steps*
> On this Thursday at 9:00 p.m. (EST) and 6:00 (PST), please join me as
> I appear on live on the Internet to discuss my efforts to convince
> Congress to hold impeachment hearing.
> _Congressman Wexler Live on Blog Radio:_
> *WHEN:* Thursday, December 18, 9:00 pm (EST)/6:00 pm (PST)
> *WHERE:* _
> <>
> (a link will be posted at _www.wexlerwantshearings.com_
> <>
> and _www.wexlerforcongress.com_
> <>
> )
> *WHO:* Rep. Wexler will appear live on Florida Progressive Radio with
> host Kenneth Quinnell of the Florida Netroots Caucus, Bob Fertick of
>, as well as Dave Lindorf, author of "The Case for
> Impeachment," and David Swanson with
> *More on the Media Blackout *
> The New York Times, Washington Post, LA Times, USA Today, and Boston
> Globe have all rejected our op ed (though the Miami Herald just put an
> edited version in its "Letters to the Editor" section). We have heard
> from the editors of some of these publications and they are telling us
> that they are getting overwhelmed with phone calls and letters of
> complaint. (Well done everybody!)
> */In short - we need to keep the pressure on if this news will spread
> far beyond the Netroots community/*.
> With warm regards,
> *Congressman Robert Wexler*
> _www.WexlerWantsHearings.com_
> <>
> Paid for by "Wexler for Congress"
> PO Box 810669
> Boca Raton, FL 33481
> Forward this message to a friend
> <>

Here's the December 14 message:

Dear Impeachment Person,
If you are on ctimpeach, you have already seen this. (Ron--I think
Suresha--sent it.) But even if I'm making a mistake and haven't
realized you get ctimpeach, I'm sending it anyway because it is the
first piece of good news in 5 weeks. AT LAST some progress!

Rep. Wexler Will Urge the Judiciary Committee to Hold Immediate
Hearings on Impeachment !!!
Go to to add your support!

By Representatives and Members of the Judiciary Committee:
Robert Wexler (D-FL), Luis Gutierrez (D-IL), and Tammy Baldwin (D-WI)

On November 7, the House of Representatives voted to send a resolution
of impeachment of Vice President Cheney to the Judiciary Committee. As
Members of the House Judiciary Committee, we strongly believe these
important hearings should begin.

The issues at hand are too serious to ignore, including credible
allegations of abuse of power that if proven may well constitute high
crimes and misdemeanors under our constitution. The charges against
Vice President Cheney relate to his deceptive actions leading up to
the Iraq war, the revelation of the identity of a covert agent for
political retaliation, and the illegal wiretapping of American

Now that former White House press secretary Scott McClellan has
indicated that the Vice President and his staff purposefully gave him
false information about the outing of Valerie Plame Wilson as a covert
agent to report to the American people, it is even more important for
Congress to investigate what may have been an intentional obstruction
of justice. Congress should call Mr. McClellan to testify about what
he described as being asked to "unknowingly [pass] along false
information." In addition, recent revelations have shown that the
Administration including Vice President Cheney may have again
manipulated and exaggerated evidence about weapons of mass destruction
-- this time about Iran's nuclear capabilities.

Some of us were in Congress during the impeachment hearings of
President Clinton. We spent a year and a half listening to testimony
about President Clinton's personal relations. This must not be the
model for impeachment inquires. A Democratic Congress can show that it
takes its constitutional authority seriously and hold a sober
investigation, which will stand in stark contrast to the kangaroo
court convened by Republicans for President Clinton. In fact, the
worst legacy of the Clinton impeachment – where the GOP pursued
trumped up and insignificant allegations - would be that it
discourages future Congresses from examining credible and significant
allegations of a constitutional nature when they arise.

The charges against Vice President Cheney are not personal. They go to
the core of the actions of this Administration, and deserve
consideration in a way the Clinton scandal never did. The American
people understand this, and a majority support hearings according to a
November 13 poll by the American Research Group. In fact, 70% of
voters say that Vice President Cheney has abused his powers and 43%
say that he should be removed from office right now. The American
people understand the magnitude of what has been done and what is at
stake if we fail to act. It is time for Congress to catch up.

Some people argue that the Judiciary Committee can not proceed with
impeachment hearings because it would distract Congress from passing
important legislative initiatives. We disagree. First, hearings need
not tie up Congress for a year and shut down the nation. Second,
hearings will not prevent Congress from completing its other business.
These hearings involve the possible impeachment of the Vice President
– not our commander in chief – and the resulting impact on the
nation's business and attention would be significantly less than the
Clinton Presidential impeachment hearings. Also, despite the fact that
President Bush has thwarted moderate Democratic policies that are
supported by a vast majority of Americans -- including children's
health care, stem cell research, and bringing our troops home from
Iraq -- the Democratic Congress has already managed to deliver a
minimum wage hike, an energy bill to address the climate crisis and
bring us closer to energy independence, assistance for college
tuition, and other legislative successes. We can continue to deliver
on more of our agenda in the coming year while simultaneously
fulfilling our constitutional duty by investigating and publicly
revealing whether or not Vice President Cheney has committed high
crimes and misdemeanors.

Holding hearings would put the evidence on the table, and the evidence
– not politics – should determine the outcome. Even if the hearings do
not lead to removal from office, putting these grievous abuses on the
record is important for the sake of history. For an Administration
that has consistently skirted the constitution and asserted that it is
above the law, it is imperative for Congress to make clear that we do
not accept this dangerous precedent. Our Founding Fathers provided
Congress the power of impeachment for just this reason, and we must
now at least consider using it.

For more info on this campaign go to .

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Fascist America in 10 easy steps

On April 24 of this year The Guardian published an article by Naomi Wolf:
Fascist America, in 10 easy steps. You can read it at:,,2064157,00.html

She identifies these 10 steps to fascism:
1. Invoke a terrifying internal and external enemy
2. Create a gulag
3. Develop a thug caste
4. Set up an internal surveillance system
5. Harass citizens' groups
6. Engage in arbitrary detention and release
7. Target key individuals
8. Control the press
9. Dissent equals treason
10. Suspend the rule of law
She makes a pretty compelling case that one can turn an open society
into a totalitarian one by formula, and that this formula has been
used through the last century in Italy, Germany, the USSR, Japan,
Latin America, etc.

She argues that Bush and Cheney have taken 9 of the 10 steps here.

In September she published a book on the thesis:
The End of America: A Letter of Warning To A Young Patriot
by Naomi Wolf
$13.95 List price
Publisher: Chelsea Green Publishing
Pub. Date: September 2007
ISBN-13: 9781933392790

Lately she's been on various radio programs arguing her thesis.

Now her lectures are on YouTube.

John Perry has a lecture of hers at
Towards the end she says she now believes impeachment is necessary.


Sunday, December 16, 2007

Response to Keith Johnstone & rich getting richer

First a response to Keith Johnstone, then a report on increase in the
wealth of the rich.

Hi Keith,
For background please read the response I sent Sharon Foster at 10:05
this morning on

At you will find a couple of samples
of what was on my website last year and some of the emails I've sent
out to the impeachment listserves over the last month.

I'll respond to you paragraph by paragraph:

On Dec 15, 2007 10:16 PM, Keith Johnston <> wrote:

> Hi Richard,
> That's quite a response you posted. Thanks for the extensive reply, I'll try
> to address just
> a few of your points.
> First and foremost, your original post made no mention that you were in fact
> a candidate
> for the party's nomination. Rather it appeared to me that you were serving
> as a facilitator.
> I base that on your comment "So far I have not found anyone who is willing
> to accept a 4th

I promised in July of this year that the 4th district would have an
impeachment candidate because, if no one else would run on such a
platform, I would. I communicated this to the GP State Central
Committee, the USGP Peace Action Committee, and the impeachment
listserves and committees in the state, and didn't realize that when
David Bedell asked me to forward that email I needed to rewrite it
because there are readers of the Fairfield Green yahoogroup who have
no contact with any of the others.

> district Green nomination for the congressional race. We will accept
> nominations from the
> floor."

I have sought other people who would run on an impeachment platform in
this district and have found none. I have just received information
from Gerald Falbel, who is interested in running against Shays,
probably as a Green, but not on an impeachment platform.

Your use of these phrases and the collective "we" gave no indication
> that you are a
> candidate for the nominee.

I assumed it was known. "We" refers to whoever manages the 4th
district convention--David Bedell, Paul Bassler, and I being the three
Fairfield Greens who most frequently go to state meetings in recent

For the record I am not running for the Green
> nomination for
> the CT-04 race.


> Second, I didn't reference a "one-issue platform", but rather voiced concern
> over the
> platform being built around impeachment. A subtle difference perhaps, but a
> difference.

Other people have talked about a "one-issue" platform. I'm not sure
what you mean by the subtle difference, but I'm willing to plead
guilty at this point to having a platform built around impeachment. I
have realized from the activity of the last 18 months that impeachment
really IS the make-it-or-break-it issue for the dominant theme I
announced last year: "Republic not Empire." The Bush project is to
destroy the apparatus of the Constitution and replace it with complete
freedom of action for a dictatorial executive branch--in the service
of managing world hegemony to maximize security and return on
investments. Bush does all that he does to transfer wealth from the
poor to the rich.

> Third, my reason for thinking that the party platform would be built around
> impeachment
> is based on your writing, in your original post, "I believe the Greens
> should run a candidate on an impeachment platform."

I've been sending these posts for 9 months and I have a LOT of
writing. Within a month or so there will be at least 200,000 words on
one to three sites.

> The next two items I'll tie together. In your reply you state "I disagree
> that arguing for
> impeachment will weaken the Green Party". And a few paragraph's later you
> write "I have
> no idea why you seem to believe that by criticizing Caruso you are somehow
> criticizing
> me." First it's not my intention to criticize you or the party, but rather
> to voice my opinion
> on a course of action that I think would be positive, and constructive. What
> I was offering
> was an analogy by illustrating how Caruso's fixation on a single point
> overshadowed the
> rest of his plan.

Keith, once one gets into debates, what one gets to say depends on
many things besides oneself--the planners, timing, and rules of the
debates, questions from the audience, statements by the other
debaters. Having been in a debate that did not follow the rules on
time the planners said they would follow, I'm not going to criticize
the conduct of a debate I haven't seen, especially when I don't know
what was said before it. Debating is like wrestling, an intense
activity in which you have to ignore some of what is going on around
you and have to be ready to discard your own plans because of changed
circumstances. It SOUNDS like Caruso got hung up on trying to explain
something he didn't have the time to go into; somehow he seems to have
gotten the impression that it was being turned into the crucial issue.
But I have no idea what that means about his actual thinking or his

> Next, you have decided to interpret my comment of "But let's jump ahead to
> January,
> 2009. Bush will be out of office. A new President and administration will be
> assuming
> responsibility and power, and a new Congress will be sworn in to uphold the
> Constitution". In your reply you say "when you jump to January, 2009, you
> apparently
> believe you are jumping to one date. You are not." Both the January 3rd, and
> 20th dates
> you reference fall within the month of January. I will concede however that
> you are right.
> There would be a 17 day window that would exist for Congress to draft
> articles of
> Impeachment, start an investigation, convene hearings, find Bush and Cheney
> guilty, and
> then remove them from office.

If 21 members of the Judiciary Committee, 218 members of the House,
and 67 of the Senate agreed about what they were doing, they could do
it very quickly.
> In your reply you write "I think it is always dangerous to worry about
> appearances before
> one worries about substance. You think that public perception of
> impeachment will damage the Green Party. But public perception is largely
> shaped by the
> corporate media. If we obey the corporate media, we are lost forever. It is
> our job to speak
> the truth and help people to understand it, not to throw up our hands
> because people
> have been deceived and then deceive them in turn." In reply to this i'll say
> that
> impeachment in general will not hurt or harm any one party.

I don't think so. Historically, the party that did the impeaching--or
even just drawing up the charges for impeachment--has ALWAYS won the
next election. The Democrats are making a BIG mistake about this.

But to "run a
> candidate on an
> impeachment platform" will turn the party into a one-issue party and the
> candidate
> chosen to run on that platform, regardless of however many other great ideas
> he/she
> might have, will be labeled as the pro-impeachment candidate by both the
> public, and the
> corporate media.

Keith, the way you are thinking about this is what drove the Democrats
to the right in order to try to capture the center as the Repuiblicans
moved it to the right. Registered Greens are 1 in 700 voters in
Fairfield. On the state ticket last year, no Green got more than 1.8%
of the vote. We've managed to get several Greens into office in very
small areas and in uncontested elections, but in Stamford, for
instance, the largest share of the vote we've received is 3%.
Meanwhile Shays had record funding last year and Jim Himes has the
seventh largest war chest for congress in the country despite being a

My goal is to raise issues the other candidates are afraid to raise
and to state them clearly. My personal motive in running is that the
only candidate I have heard who has come close to saying what I
believe is Ralph Nader. The others all claim to represent me but
don't. I decided to run because I knew the only candidate who was
going to say what I had to say was me. People who don't like what I
have to say shouldn't vote for me; instead they should run against me.

Is that right? No. But I think it is reality, and a
> candidate running on an
> impeachment platform will not be elected, and will do little to help set the
> stage for the
> future electability of other party candidates.

I don't think so. I think few people in this country have heard a good
presentation of the issues surrounding impeachment. I think they
should hear it. But if you want someone else to run, please help that
person to run.

However in my last 3
> paragraph's I outline an
> approach that I think not only plays up the party's strong points, but also
> helps to clearly
> define it in the mind of the public as a party that stands for something.

Are you thinking of the national party, the state party, Fairfield, or
local groups? In Fairfield our essential problem is that 3 people did
3/4ths of the work last year. If you want to strengthen the party,
please contribute time and energy and stimulate other people to. If
you think that can be done better with another candidate, please find
the candidate.

> In Jean deSmet's post-election win press release it said: "This election is
> about the future
> of Windham," deSmet told her supporters tonight. "We are going to listen to
> what the
> community wants. We are going to involve those not yet engaged. We are going
> to build on
> our community's strengths and on what's working. And – you better believe it
> – this Town
> is going to be a proactive participant with the community in working
> together on common
> goals." This is a positive and forward-looking message that I appreciate,
> and I will eagerly
> follow her to see how she implements these words.


> Finally, in your last paragraph, in discussing universal healthcare, you
> state "You say you
> think these are the real issues and that they are disconnected from
> impeachment." In re-
> reading my post I can't seem to find the comment that you're referencing in
> which I
> discuss that healthcare is disconnected from impeachment. I will reiterate
> that I do
> believe that most people would rather vote for a candidate and a party that
> stands for
> something, rather than for a candidate or a party that stands against
> something.

Keith, I have plenty of beliefs about what is right and good and
should be advanced. But I can't take a Pollyannaish view toward the
destruction of our republic. If we can't agree that Bush and Cheney
have violated their oaths of office, we have no prospect of keeping
our own.

> me a positive vision of the future. Tell me what we can do together to
> improve our
> country. How can we create healthcare for all, how can we improve our
> transportation
> infrastructure, how can we improve the quality of life for the poor, how can
> we protect the
> environment and in so doing can we replace our existing petroleum-based
> energy system
> with one made up of renewable energy.

I've had that vision over 40 years. But what have you witnessed for
the last 40 years? WHY has this country been squandering everything
that was good about it? WHY can't we get what we want and need? WHY
are our hopes crushed over and over?

The world is run by the plutocracy of the leaders of the G8, Keith.
Without understanding how the rich get what they want at the expense
of the rest of us, we have no prospect of improving anything. You want
to hear hopeful imagination. We got as far as hopeful imagination can
get in this country in 1968. We need analysis and clear comprehension.

> Those things intrigue and excite me. Talk about that and I'm right there.

I've got them. But they will go nowhere without impeachment. The
Democrats aren't going to give them to us. They just want world

> I stand by what I said: most people want to vote for a candidate and party
> that stands for
> something. Impeachment, especially in context of the 17 day window between
> Congress
> convening in January and a new president being sworn in on the 2oth, can be
> discussed,
> but I don't believe it should be the focus of a political campaign.
> Investigations for war
> crimes, sure. But those investigations will, and should, take a great deal
> of time.

I bring that up merely to refute the idea that impeachment is a moot
issue. I'm proposing pressuring the Democrats to impeach BEFORE 2009.
They're starting to respond. Wexler wants to start investigation of

> I want to vote for a candidate who focuses on a positive vision for our
> country, and
> articulates that vision in positive terms that will encourage people to work
> together for a
> unified and stronger country.

I've been writing for 45 years, Keith. One book is due to come out in
May. I may publish some essays before that. But my purpose is not to
help people lift their depression. They are depressed for good reason;
the vicious power politics they are continuously subjected to is
infuriating and we are usually in no position to do anything about
it--therefore it's depressing. I think we all need to learn how power
works so we can resist it.


Report Says That the Rich Are Getting Richer Faster, Much Faster
Published: December 15, 2007
The increase in incomes of the top 1 percent of Americans from 2003 to
2005 exceeded the total income of the poorest 20 percent of Americans,
data in a new report by the Congressional Budget Office shows.
The poorest fifth of households had total income of $383.4 billion in
2005, while just the increase in income for the top 1 percent came to
$524.8 billion, a figure 37 percent higher.
The total income of the top 1.1 million households was $1.8 trillion,
or 18.1 percent of the total income of all Americans, up from 14.3
percent of all income in 2003. The total 2005 income of the three
million individual Americans at the top was roughly equal to that of
the bottom 166 million Americans, analysis of the report showed.
The report is the latest to document the growing concentration of
income at the top, a trend that President Bush said last January had
been under way for more than 25 years.
Earlier reports, based on tax returns, showed that in 2005 the top 10
percent, top 1 percent and fractions of the top 1 percent enjoyed
their greatest share of income since 1928 and 1929.
The budget office report takes into account a broader definition of
income than tax returns that is known as comprehensive income. It
includes untaxed Social Security benefits, welfare, food stamps and
part of the value of Medicare benefits, giving a fuller picture of
incomes at the bottom than tax data.
Much of the increase at the top reflected the rebound of the stock
market after its sharp drop in 2000, economists from across the
political spectrum said. About half of the income going to the top 1
percent comes from investments and business.
In addition, Congress in 2003 cut taxes on long-term capital gains and
most dividends, which advocates said would encourage people to turn
untaxed wealth into taxable income. Some economists have said that the
increase in incomes at the top is illusory and is in good part simply
converting untaxed assets into taxed income to take advantage of
reduced tax rates.
The Congressional Budget Office report made no attempt to explain the
increases in income in its annual report on effective federal tax
rates paid by people at different income levels.
Asked how much of the increase at the top was from the tax cuts rather
than market gains, Peter R. Orszag, the budget office director, said,
"I can't give you an answer to that because we just don't know."
Chris Frenze, Republican staff director for the Congressional Joint
Economic Committee, said the increase in top incomes is much more
modest if viewed over longer time periods. Since 2000, he said, the
average income of the top 1 percent has risen $97,900, or 6.7 percent,
the same percentage increase this group had from 1992 to 1997.
Jared Bernstein, an economist at the Economic Policy Institute in
Washington who characterizes the Bush administration's policies as
YOYO economics, based on You (Are) On Your Own, said the differences
in income growth explained why so many Americans have told pollsters
that they are feeling squeezed.
"A lot of people justifiably feel they are working harder and smarter,
they are baking a bigger and better pie, and yet their slice is not
growing much at all," Mr. Bernstein said. "It is meaningless to
middle- and low-income families to say we have a great economy because
their economy looks so much different than folks at the top of the
scale because this is an economy that is working, but not working for
At every income level Americans had more income, after adjusting for
inflation in 2005 than in 2003, but the increases ranged from almost
imperceptible for the poor to modest for the middle class and largest
for those at the top.
On average, incomes for the top 1 percent of households rose by
$465,700 each, or 42.6 percent after adjusting for inflation. The
incomes of the poorest fifth rose by $200, or 1.3 percent, and the
middle fifth increased by $2,400 or 4.3 percent.
The share of all federal taxes paid by the top 1 percent grew, but
only slightly more than half the rate of their growth in incomes
because of the tax rate cuts. The top 1 percent paid 27.6 percent of
all federal taxes in 2005, up from 22.9 percent in 2003, while the
share paid by the middle fifth of taxpayers declined to 9.3 percent
from 10 percent in 2003.
The share of their income that the top 1 percent paid in all federal
taxes and in income taxes fell. The total tax rate dropped 1.8
percentage points, to 31.2 percent, from 2003 to 2005 while their
average income tax rate declined one percentage point, to 19.4
percent, largely because of the cuts in taxes on capital gains and
NYTimes, Dec 15, 2007

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Keith Johnston's message & Duffee reply

Hi, Impeachment and Green Folk:
I have invited anyone and everyone to debate the issue of impeachment
and related issues. On the Fairfield Green list, Keith Johnson has
stepped up to the plate. I answer below.

On Dec 15, 2007 1:45 PM, Keith Johnston <> wrote:

> I appreciate Richard Duffee's argument that "Constitutional issues are
> intrinsically the most important issues a
> government CAN face, so they should be confronted squarely." For our form
> of government to maintain long-term viability, and to retain (or regain) our
> position as a shining beacon of freedom for the world we cannot shy away
> from examining how our government's actions have impacted us, and whether or
> not these actions are consistent with our Constitution. It is by necessity
> a discussion that will be complex, and require more than bumper-sticker
> slogans.
> However I have a concern about an entire political platform being built
> around the most serious form of punishment/correction the Constitution
> provides for: impeachment.
> I have been, and remain a supporter of the argument that Bush and Cheney
> have committed impeachable offenses. It is a sad statement on the current
> Congress that they have been unwilling to explore this issue.
> But let's jump ahead to January, 2009. Bush will be out of office. A new
> President and administration will be assuming responsibility and power, and
> a new Congress will be sworn in to uphold the Constitution. There will be
> no one there for a Green candidate to impeach.
> I think that to run a Congressional campaign on a platform that emphasizes
> impeachment, however noble the reason, it will have a negative impact on the
> party, and do nothing to position the party for future races. The argument
> that the Constitutional issue must be faced squarely will be lost, and the
> party will be viewed as one that is only against things (in this case Bush),
> instead of one that is for something constructive.
> Take the recent Bridgeport mayoral election as an example. Chris Caruso and
> Bill Finch battled it out in the primary. Caruso had outlined several
> issues that I thought were positive and could help Bridgeport to move
> forward. Finch on the other hand outlined a more generic political position
> that seemed almost cookie-cutter in nature. For me it was Caruso, not
> Finch, who had more of a vision of Bridgeport could be. But I voted for
> Finch, as did the majority. Why? For me it was because Caruso was never
> able to articulate his vision. He couldn't get past that Bridgeport was
> corrupt, and that he needed to sweep city hall clean of all of the criminal
> and corrupt elements that were there.
> I was with Chris on that point. OK. Great, so we'll elect you and you do
> the house-cleaning. Now what? Let's hear more about your vision. What
> would he come back with? More points about how city hall was corrupt. That
> was his platform, and no matter how many other things he may have had to
> offer his platform was that city hall needed to be reformed. He came off as
> being against the status quo, rather than for a positive and constructive
> new city. His campaign was always about the negative.
> I suggest that the Green Party more carefully considers the current
> political landscape before running a pro-impeachment campaign. There are
> many Democrats who are frustrated by their party's lack of leadership in
> Washington. They are looking for leadership, they are looking for
> progressive's, and they are looking for a fix to our current political
> quagmire. In short, they are actively looking at third parties.
> The Green Party should view this as an opportunity to create a positive
> image of the party and its core values. Economic issues will be front and
> center of the campaign come January 2008, with Healthcare bridging the gaps
> between moral imperative, financial strain, and our basic quality of life.
> Green have a tradition of advocating for Universal Healthcare. The time is
> right to emphasize that point.
> What about Personal/Global Responsibility and Ecological Wisdom? Human
> activity has affected the environment in a negative way. As a country we
> have almost accepted the science behind global warming, but there are vocal
> minorities, especially in the media, that cast doubt on this at every
> opportunity. Greens should take the lead on this issue. The debate needs
> to shift from the validity of the science to a discussion of solutions,
> including answers to questions from those who doubt (Is eliminating our
> carbon output going to harm us? Are we going to be worse off with different
> energy technologies? The answer to both is no. But Greens need to expand
> on these points.)
> This constructive platform approach will be beneficial to the party in the
> long run. It will present it as a viable party with real solutions to real
> problems that people can relate to. It will be especially beneficial to
> future candidates as they run for local and state offices as voters will be
> able to see them not as representing the party that is only against
> something. Instead they will be from the party that stands for something.
> Keith Johnston

I answer:

Hi, Keith,
What statement made you believe that I had or advocated a one-issue
platform? A congressional candidate has to answer any question that
arises in debate. Last year I had written positions on about 40 issues
and my campaign flyer had 9. I used to teach the philosophy of law, so
I've had to study a lot of issues.

Everyone in public office takes an oath to defend the constitution
against domestic enemies. Consequently issues that bear on that oath
should determine whether an individual is qualified to hold office.
This is not true of other issues. When I say I will run on an
impeachment platform I mean that I regard impeachment a more important
issue than my own candidacy and than any other issue I can raise. I
believe the same is true of everyone else: under the circumstances,
any candidate who does not demand impeachment should be disqualified.
It is a mark of the deterioration of our govenment that one cannot
find universal assent to this proposition.

Next, when you jump to January, 2009, you apparently believe you are
jumping to one date. You are not. Congress convenes on January 3. The
President takes his or her oath on January 20. Bush and Cheney CAN be
impeached by the next Congress. It is a matter of political will.

Third, on January 21, 2009, there will be plenty of people to
prosecute. Bush and Cheney have not only committed high crimes and
misdemeanors, but thousands of counts of ordinary crimes. The Senate
will be in a position to ratify the Charter of the International
Criminal Court so that no one in the future can do with impunity what
Bush, Cheney, Rice, Rumsfeld, and so many others have done. Congress
will be in a position to reclaim its war-making powers, which it never
should have given away to the President, who has no constitutional
claim to them. Congress will be in a position to repeal the Patriot
Act, the Military Commissions Act, the Violent Radicalization and
Homegrown Terrorism Act, the enabling legislation for Guantanamo, to
reconfirm FISA, to limit the powers of the CIA, NSA, and FBI, and on
and on. ALL of these issues are directly related to impeachment
because they will be FAR easier to accomplish if our legislators will
have sufficient integrity to admit that Bush and Cheney were wrong in
the first place. But if the equivocate on the basic issue,
impeachment, they are unlikely to restore the rule of law and

I disagree that arguing for impeachment will weaken the Green Party. I
believe the Democratic Party has weakened itself by failing to address
impeachment and that the Green Party has already strengthened itself
by taking impeachment on. The Green Party first voted for impeachment
in July, 2003, and made it a platform item in January, 2006. When I
ran in 2006 the strongest positive responses I got were always to the
issue of impeachment.

I think it is always dangerous to worry about appearances before one
worries about substance. You think that public perception of
impeachment will damage the Green Party. But public perception is
largely shaped by the corporate media. If we obey the corporate media,
we are lost forever. It is our job to speak the truth and help people
to understand it, not to throw up our hands because people have been
deceived and then deceive them in turn.

I am sorry you voted for Finch if you believed Caruso had the better
case. But I have no idea why you seem to believe that by criticizing
Caruso you are somehow criticizing me. If you have evidence that I
have no vision or cannot articulate one, I hope you'll tell me.

On my website last year I had an analysis and commentary on the 10 Key
Green Values. I share them--and with some competence. In law school I
earned a certificate in Environmental Law. I took 101 credits of
science and am one paper short of a BS in environmental science. I
trained for a year under Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., doing suits for the
Hudson River Fisherman's Association. For three years I was the
research person for the Alliance to Close Indian Point.

I believe thoroughly in universal health care--and have a personal
stake in it because I have no hearlth insurance. If you attended the
debates last year you would have seen me argue for universal health
care: though only one country has higher per capita income than we
have, 26 have greater longevity. UNICEF just found the US to be THE
worst developed country for children.

Our health care fiasco is just a small portion of what is most
fundamentally wrong with this country: of ALL developed countries, we
have THE greatest difference between the rich and the poor. 90% of the
country transfer have their wealth siphoned to the richest 10%. The
Law of Dimninishing Returns implies that any transfer from the poor to
the rich decreases the benefit of money while any transfer from the
rich to the poor increases its benefit. We live in defiance of this
well-known economic law, and we all suffer for it because are
resources are wasted on people who don't need them while those who do
need them to be happy and productive people are denied them.

You say you think these are the real issues and that they are
disconnected from impeachment. About the first you are completely
right, but about the second, completely wrong. The REASON we need
impeachment is that Bush and Cheney's crimes against the Constitution
have ALL been designed to increase the dominance of the rich over the
poor, abroad as well as at home. We have the crisis we have because
Bush is destroying the legal apparatus of republic to substitute
secretive, fraudulent, arbitrary, and violent executive power for the
openness, honesty, and tolerance necessary for a functioning republic.
To separate the country's structural issues from its substantive ones
is a serious mistake because neither can be understood without the

I hope you will consider my position.
Richard Duffee

Friday, December 14, 2007

Green nominating convention postponed to Jan. 5, 10 a.m.

Hi, Impeachment Person,
The weather reports for Sunday are terrible. We don't want
public-spirited people to get into car accidents over a nominating
convention, so we have postponed the convention from December 16 to
Saturday, January 5 at 10 a.m., with a snowcheck date of Sunday,
January 6, 2 p.m.

I will be sending out several analyses of the issues the Green Party
nominating convention will face on January 5. I will post any message
anyone wants me to post on the issues. Please make liberal use of the

So far I have not found anyone who is willing to accept a 4th district
Green nomination for the congressional race. We will accept
nominations from the floor.

The primary issue of the convention will probably be whether or not
the Greens should run any candidate for Congress in the 4th district.
A number of arguments should be made on both sides of this issue so
that everyone will be clear about the possible consequences of their

I believe the Greens should run a candidate on an impeachment
platform. I think this is important because impeachment is a
non-partisan issue both the Democrats and Republicans avoid, I
believe, because they do not want to admit the extent of the
Constitutional crisis we face, nor what their actual roles in it are.
Constitutional issues are intrinsically the most important issues a
government CAN face, so they should be confronted squarely.

In World War II we filled the power vacuum left by the inevitable
decline of the French and British empires. Every major US politician
for the 60 years before Bush has denied the extent of US empire and
the means we use to rule it. Empire is essentially a system of slavery
at a distance that cannot be managed without massive secrecy, deceit,
and violence. Because Republic requires a modicum of honesty,
openness, and tolerance, no Republic can dominate an empire without
being corrupted by it. The rapidly growing fascism of the Bush
Administration, its pervasive corruption and fraud, is not simply an
aberration; but the direct and inevitable result of ruling an empire.
Sooner or later the demands and opportunities of imperial power had to
lead to a president who would dismantle the legal apparatus of the
contitutional republic--and a congress who would hand him the
power--in order to streamline the domination of other countries and
dissent at home.

Without a national agreement that Bush and Cheney deserve impeachment,
there is no way to recreate the rule of law and to obligate future
presidents and congresses to respect the Constitution.

So I believe the question before the Fairfield Greens is whether to
demand impeachment by running a candidate.

I think it should be clear by now that there is no other way to demand
impeachment. Connecticut Democrats made it clear by the vote the
Democratic State Central Committee that they would not buck the
national party line despite the fact that they had no clear account of
the reasoning behind it. The Democrats will not rethink their position
unless they know they can lose votes.

The Democrats will, of course, try to persuade us that it is our
obligation to elect Democrats even though they think they have no
obligation to uphold the Constitution. They will insist that partisan
issues are more important the Constitutional issues, that getting more
Democrats into office is the only proactical solution to all genuine
political problems we face.

As I assume you know, I do not believe this. But I hope the issue will
be raised fully and fairly. I invite anyone who wants to argue the
position, to argue it on this listserve, on ctimpeach, on Green
websites, and on the floor of the convention on January 5. I will ask
Jim Himes to address the issue in those fora. I will ask him also if
he minds if I post the emails we have sent each other on the issue. I
will ask him to debate me on it.

So please communicate with me--and through me, everyone I communicate with.
Richard Duffee

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Chris Hedges: Why We Resist

Ralph Nazareth sent us this piece:

Why We Resist

By Chris Hedges

12/11/07 " " --- The refusal to pay my taxes if we go to
war with Iran, and the portion of my taxes spent on the wars in Iraq
and Afghanistan if we do not cut off funding for these two conflicts,
is not a means. It is an end. I do not know if my refusal, and the
refusal of others, will be effective in halting these wars. All I know
is that it is worth doing. The alternative, a complacency bred from
cynicism and despair, is worse. Refusing to actively resist injustice
and flagrant violations of international law, refusing to attempt to
turn back the tide of American tyranny, is surrender. It is the death
of hope.

Acts of resistance are moral acts. They begin because people of
conscience can no longer tolerate abuse and despotism. They are carried
out not because they are effective but because they are right. Those
who begin these acts are few in number and dismissed by the cynics who
hide their fear behind their worldliness. Resistance is about affirming
life in a world awash in death. It is the supreme act of faith, the
highest form of spirituality. We remember and honor the names of those
who, solitary when they began, defied their age. Henry David Thoreau.
Jane Adams. Dietrich Bonhoeffer. Mahatma Gandhi. Milovan Djilas.
Andrei Sakharov. Martin Luther King. Václav Havel. Nelson Mandela.
It is time to join them. They sacrificed their security and comfort,
often spent time in jail and in some cases were killed. They understood
that to live in the fullest sense of the word, to exist as free and
independent human beings, meant to defy authority. When the dissident
Lutheran pastor Dietrich Bonhoeffer was taken from his cell in a Nazi
prison to the gallows, his last words were "this is for me the end, but
also the beginning."

Bonhoeffer, who returned to Germany from Union Theological Seminary in
New York to fight the Nazis, knew that most of the citizens in his
nation were complicit through their silence in a vast enterprise of
death. He affirmed what we all must affirm. It did not mean he avoided
death. It did not mean that he, as a distinct individual, survived. But
he understood that his resistance, and even his death, was an act of
love. He fought for the sanctity of life. He gave, even to those who
did not join him, another narrative. His defiance condemned his

"Cast your whole vote, not a strip of paper merely, but your whole
influence," Thoreau wrote in "Civil Disobedience" after going to jail
for refusing to pay his taxes during the Mexican-American War. "A
minority is powerless while it conforms to the majority; it is not even
a minority then; but it is irresistible when it clogs by its whole
weight. If the alternative is to keep all just men in prison, or give
up war and slavery, the State will not hesitate which to choose. If a
thousand men were not to pay their tax-bills this year, that would not
be a violent and bloody measure, as it would be to pay them, and enable
the State to commit violence and shed innocent blood."

Those who recognize the injustice of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan
and a war with Iran, who concede that these wars are not only a
violation of international law but under the post-Nuremberg laws are
defined as criminal wars of aggression, yet do nothing, have forfeited
their rights as citizens. By allowing the status quo to go unchallenged
they become agents of injustice. To do nothing is to do something. They
practice a faux morality. They vent against war on the Internet or
among themselves but do not resist. They take refuge in the conception
of themselves as moderates. They stand on what they insist is the
middle ground without realizing that the middle ground has shifted
under us, that the old paradigm of left and right, liberal and
conservative, is meaningless in a world where, to quote Immanuel Kant,
those in power have embraced "a radical evil."

"I must confess that over the past few years I have been gravely
disappointed with the white moderate," King wrote from another era as
he sat inside a Birmingham jail. "I have almost reached the
regrettable conclusion that the Negro's great stumbling block in his
stride toward freedom is not the White Citizen's Councilor or the Ku
Klux Klanner, but the white moderate, who is more devoted to 'order'
than to justice; who prefers a negative peace which is the absence of
tension to a positive peace which is the presence of justice; who
constantly says: 'I agree with you in the goal you seek, but I cannot
agree with your methods of direct action'; who paternalistically
believes he can set the timetable for another man's freedom; who lives
by a mythical concept of time and who constantly advises the Negro to
wait for a 'more convenient season.' Shallow understanding from people
of good will is more frustrating than absolute misunderstanding from
people of ill will. Lukewarm acceptance is much more bewildering than
outright rejection."

This lukewarm acceptance, this failure to act, is the worst form of
moral cowardice. It cripples and destroys us. When Dante enters the
"city of woes" in the "Inferno" he hears the cries of "those whose
lives earned neither honor nor bad fame," those rejected by heaven and
hell, those who dedicated their lives solely to the pursuit of
happiness. These are all the "good" people, the ones who never made a
fuss, who filled their lives with vain and empty pursuits, harmless no
doubt, to amuse themselves, who never took a stand for anything, never
risked anything, who went along. They never looked too hard at their
lives, never felt the need, never wanted to look.

We face a crisis. Our democratic institutions are being dismantled. We
are headed for a state of perpetual war. We are paralyzed by fear. We
will be stripped, if we do not resist, of our few remaining rights. To
resist, while there is still time, is not only the highest form of
spirituality but the highest form of patriotism. It is, if you care
about what is worth protecting in this country, a moral imperative.
There are hundreds of thousands who have died in the wars in Iraq and
Afghanistan. This number would be dwarfed by a war with Iran, which
could ignite a regional inferno in the Middle East. Not a lot is being
asked of us. Compare our potential sacrifices with what is being
inflicted on and demanded of those trapped in the violence in Iraq,
Afghanistan and soon, perhaps, Iran. Courage, as Aristotle wrote, is
the highest of human virtues because without it we are unlikely to
practice any other virtue. Once we find courage we find freedom.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Sunday 16th nominating convention in Norwalk

Dear Impeachment Person:

David Bedell is sending the following press release out. We expect the
nominating convention to take from 2 to 4. From 4 to 5 we will have an
organizing meeting. The Green rules state that if you have attended
two Green fuctions, you are entitled to vote.

Whether you are entitled to vote or not, we would appreciate your
attendance and input and we will need your assistance if you want an
impeachment candidacy in the 4th district. The majority of the debates
have entry requirements set by the League of Women Voters. The LWV
will not allow a candidate to debate without a showing of at least
$5000 in contributions from more than 50 contributors, and at least 50
volunteers averaging at least 10 hours of volunteer time--which will
be needed to get the necessary signatures. We'll need more money,
work, and cooperation than we had last time or we will not be able to
articulate our positions in public.

We'll probably have some visiting speakers on impeachment, among them
John Nirenberg and Harold Burbank--and if necessary will start the
speeches at 1:15.


And here's the NEWS:
For immediate release
Date: December 10, 2007

Richard Duffee to Seek Nomination

Contact: David Bedell, (203)581-3193,
Richard Duffee, (203)588-0161,

NORWALK, CT—On Sunday, December 16, the Connecticut Green Party will
hold a nominating meeting to select a candidate for Congress from the
4th District. Richard Duffee of Stamford, a retired lawyer and
impeachment activist, has announced his intention to seek the
nomination. The meeting will take place at the Norwalk Public Library
beginning at 2:00 PM on Sunday.

The meeting is open to the public. All Green Party members residing
in the 4th District are encouraged to attend and vote on the
nomination, while other interested voters are welcome to attend as

When asked his reasons for running, Duffee cited the need to reverse
the current Iraq war policies, to prevent war against Iran, and to
counter the Bush administration's environmental legacy and failure to
address global warming or public safety threats such as the nearby
Indian Point nuclear power station.

Congress Has Failed to Impeach

Above all, however, Duffee decided to run because Congress has not
used its power of impeachment to end what he describes as the criminal
activities of George Bush and Dick Cheney. "I believe the current
Congress has not taken seriously the oath of office to defend the
Constitution. We are in a constitutional crisis that cannot end until
we repudiate empire and imperial presidencies and return to our

"We need a government based on trust, openness, honesty, and
disinterested public action. It is clear that Bush and Cheney regard
us not as citizens, but as subjects, using all the techniques of
ruling an empire—secrecy, deceit, betrayal, fraud, mystification, and
violence. These are inherently incompatible with the moral
prerequisites for maintaining a Republic based on the rule of law."

Duffee has started a campaign blog at

He ran in 2006 for the same seat, but withdrew two weeks before
Election Day, citing an agreement with the local Greens to endorse
Democrat Diane Farrell because they felt she had a better chance of
defeating Republican Christopher Shays in a close race.

The same scenario will not be considered in the next election,
according to David Bedell, Secretary of the Fairfield County chapter
of the Green Party. "Richard has offered to run, and we will entertain
other nominations from the floor, including None of the Above. But
whatever we decide, if we put a candidate on the ballot in 2008, we
expect it to be binding this time, not conditional as in 2006."

Bedell explained that minor parties such as the Green Party have to
petition their way onto the ballot, and if they do not run a candidate
in any given year, then they lose their ballot line for that office.
For the Congressional seat, the Green Party will have to collect at
least 2100 signatures of voters in the 4th District.

Sunday, December 09, 2007

John Nirenberg's walk & Bob Bowman's letter to the military

Hi, Impeachment Person,

John Nirenberg, a history professor from Vermont, is walking from
Boston to Washington DC to demand that Nancy Pelosi put impeachment in
motion. He has a website,:,, will be walking
from Norwalk to Stamford next weekend, and will be on Scott Harris's
show on 89.5 fm at 9:30 Monday night.

Any of us can enjoy him, walk with him, talk to him, learn from him,
and help him. If you want to walk with him or share a meal with him,
he is walking along Rte 1 on this schedule:
December 1 Boston, Mass send-off
2 Wrentham area
3 N. Attleboro
4 Providence, RI
5 E. Greenwich
6 Wakefield area
7 Charleston
8 Pawcatuk
9 New London, CT
10 Old Lyme
11 Clinton
12 Branford
13 Milford
14 Bridgeport
15 Westport
16 Stamford
17 NYC
26 Philadelphia, PA
January 5 Baltimore, MD
10 Washington DC

If you want to meet up with on his path, first check the website above
to orient yourself, then call him on his cell phone, 802-380-8638.
Please do not call him before 7 a.m. or after 10 p.m.. He usually
walks from 7 a.m. to 3:30 pm and is glad to talk on the phone while he

If you know any reporter or radio interviewer, please call John and
try to make arrangements with the press people you know.

At 10 a.m. on Saturday the 15th John should reach the Westport Bridge.
It would be wonderful if you would escort him on his walk to the
bridge from Fairfield or if you would walk with him from the Bridge to
Stew Leonard's (2.6 miles); then they'll be driven to the Norwalk City
Hall. Dan DeWalt (802-348-7701), the impeachment organizer who
mobilized Vermont for its 41 town impeachment resolutions and the
votes of its legislature, will probably be with him on this stretch;
Wendy Newton (413-585-0127), John's organizer from Westhampton, Mass.
should be with him too. John will probably make it to the Vigil for
Peace at the Norwalk City Hall, 125 East Avenue, Norwalk, sometime
between 12:30 and 2. After the Norwalk City Hall, they'll be driven
back to Rte. 1 and continue walking toward Stamford.

On Sunday the 16th, John will backtrack a bit to speak at the
beginning of the Fairfield Green Party Nominating Convention at the
Norwalk Library at 1:15; the Convention starts at 2: I hope the
Convention will nominate a candidate with a platform on which
impeachment will be the most prominent blank. (If the Convention
doesn't, because I've promised that the 4th district will have an
impeachment candidates, I'll run as an independent.)

Wendy Newton says:
"Please come to the bridge on the 15th.
Please ask everybody you ever knew, everybody you ever saw on the
bridge, to come on the 15th at 10 AM to support John.
Urge people who "always meant to go" to be there, this one time.
Tell all these people to tell all their people? Please help with any
network you're involved with. Got press? Got radio?
John was interviewed on WPKN while walking in Rhode Island on Tuesday,
and will probably be on again.
I'm bringing some PDA & Mass-Impeach friends down from Northampton.
Please send John's website to everybody you can think of.....and talk
this up wherever you go.
Contact me anytime. If anyone wants interviews, John has a cellphone
with him and is delighted to talk about his march.
Thanks, Wendy Wendy Newton 211 North Street – Five Northampton, MA
1060-2386 413.585.0127"
I'll keep you posted on changes—for instance, if John decides to go to
the Stamford Peace Vigil (which is earlier and further away than the
Norwalk vigil,) or if other well known people, such as Cindy Sheehan,
decide to show up.

Lots of other significant things are happening, but I'll just add one
today: a letter from Dr. Bob Bowman forwarded by Harold Burbank:

Patriot News e-letter December 2007

The Patriots
Dr. Robert M. Bowman, Lt. Col., USAF, ret., National Commander
1494 Patriot Dr, Melbourne, FL 32940
home: (321) 752-5955
web site:

1. The struggle to prevent war with Iran
a. Text of Open Letter to Generals & Admirals
2. The case for Impeachment
3. Form a local chapter of "The Patriots"
4. The "Constitution Project"
5. New Guidelines for Event Organizers
6. Remember "The Patriots" in your will
7. The Elephant in the Living Room: 9/11 Truth
8. Check out our constantly changing web site
a. Text of recent speeches and articles
b. Articles from S&SN over the last 25 years
c. links to chapter web sites & contacts
d. help in organizing a speaking event
e. video & audio files of recent events
f. Dr. Bowman's stand on nearly a hundred vital issues
g. lots more


1. The struggle to prevent war with Iran

Preventing an unprovoked US attack on Iran (especially one
with nuclear weapons) has been a high priority for us for the last few
years. The recent Intelligence Estimate concluding that Iran halted
its nuclear weapons program in 2003 confirms our contention that there
is no immediate threat from Iran. Here is the complete text of Dr.
Bowman's Open Letter. Though it has been reprinted many times, we
still don't know if the Pentagon brass have seen it. Please copy it
and pass it on, along with a link to our web site .

Duty, Honor, Country 2007
An Open Letter to the New Generation of Military Officers Serving and
Protecting Our Nation

By Dr. Robert M. Bowman, Lt. Col., USAF, ret., National Commander, The Patriots

Dear Comrades in Arms,

You are facing challenges in 2007 that we of previous
generations never dreamed of. I'm just an old fighter pilot (101
combat missions in Vietnam, F-4 Phantom, Phu Cat, 1969-1970) who's now
a disabled veteran with terminal cancer from Agent Orange. Our
mailing list (over 22,000) includes veterans from all branches of the
service, all political parties, and all parts of the political
spectrum. We are Republicans and Democrats, Greens and Libertarians,
Constitutionists and Reformers, and a good many Independents. What
unites us is our desire for a government that (1) follows the
Constitution, (2) honors the truth, and (3) serves the people. (See )

We see our government going down the wrong path, all too
often ignoring military advice, and heading us toward great danger.
And we look to you who still serve as the best hope for protecting our
nation from disaster.

We see the current Iraq War as having been unnecessary,
entered into under false pretenses, and horribly mismanaged by the
civilian authorities. Thousands of our brave troops have been
needlessly sacrificed in a futile attempt at occupation of a hostile
land. Many more thousands have suffered wounds which will change
their lives forever. Tens of thousands have severe psychological
problems because of what they have seen and what they have done.
Potentially hundreds of thousands could be poisoned by depleted
uranium, with symptoms appearing years later, just as happened to us
exposed to Agent Orange. The military services are depleted and
demoralized. The VA system is under-funded and overwhelmed. The
National Guard and Reserves have been subjected to tour after tour,
disrupting lives for even the lucky ones who return intact. Jobs have
been lost, marriages have been destroyed, homes have been foreclosed,
and children have been estranged. And for what? We have lost allies,
made new enemies, and created thousands of new terrorists, further
endangering the American people.

But you know all this. I'm sure you also see the enormous
danger in a possible attack on Iran, possibly with nuclear weapons.
Such an event, seriously contemplated by the Cheney faction of the
Bush administration, would make enemies of Russia and China and turn
us into the number one rogue nation on earth. The effect on our
long-term national security would be devastating.

Some of us had hoped that the new Democratic Congress
would end the occupation of Iraq and take firm steps to prevent an
attack on Iran, perhaps by impeaching Bush and Cheney. These hopes
have been dashed. The lily-livered Democrats have caved in, turning
their backs on those few (like Congressman Jack Murtha) who understand
the situation. Many of us have personally walked the halls of
Congress, to no avail.

This is where you come in.

We know that many of you share our concern and our
determination to protect our republic from an arrogant,
out-of-control, imperial presidency and a compliant, namby-pamby
Congress (both of which are unduly influenced by the oil companies and
other big-money interests). We know that you (like us) wouldn't have
pursued a military career unless you were idealistic and devoted to
our nation and its people. (None of us do it for the pay and working
conditions!) But we also recognize that you may not see how you can
influence these events. We in the military have always had a historic
subservience to civilian authority.

Perhaps I can help with whatever wisdom I've gathered from
age (I retired in 1978, so I am ancient indeed).

Our oath of office is to "protect and defend the
Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and
domestic." Might I suggest that this includes a rogue president and
vice-president? Certainly we are bound to carry out the legal orders
of our superiors. But the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ)
which binds all of us enshrines the Nuremberg Principles which this
country established after World War II (which you are too young to
remember). One of those Nuremberg Principles says that we in the
military have not only the right, but also the DUTY to refuse an
illegal order. It was on this basis that we executed Nazi officers
who were "only carrying out their orders."

The Constitution which we are sworn to uphold says that
treaties entered into by the United States are the "highest law of the
land," equivalent to the Constitution itself. Accordingly, we in the
military are sworn to uphold treaty law, including the United Nations
charter and the Geneva Convention.

Based on the above, I contend that should some civilian
order you to initiate a nuclear attack on Iran (for example), you are
duty-bound to refuse that order. I might also suggest that you should
consider whether the circumstances demand that you arrest whoever gave
the order as a war criminal.

I know for a fact that in recent history (once under Nixon
and once under Reagan), the military nuclear chain of command in the
White House discussed these things and were prepared to refuse an
order to "nuke Russia." In effect they took the (non-existent)
"button" out of the hands of the President.. We were thus never quite
as close to World War III as many feared, no matter how irrational any
president might have become. They determined that the proper response
to any such order was, "Why, sir?" Unless there was (in their words)
a "damn good answer," nothing was going to happen.

I suggest that if you in this generation have not had such
a discussion, perhaps it is time you do. In hindsight, it's too bad
such a discussion did not take place prior to the preemptive "shock
and awe" attack on Baghdad. Many of us at the time spoke out
vehemently that such an attack would be an impeachable offense, a war
crime against the people of Iraq, and treason against the United
States of America. But our voices were drowned out and never reached
the ears of the generals in 2003. I now regret that I never sent a
letter such as this at that time, but depended on the corporate media
to carry my message. I must not make that mistake again.

Also in hindsight, President Bush could be court-martialed
for abuse of power as Commander-in-Chief. Vice President Cheney could
probably be court-martialed for his performance as Acting
Commander-in-Chief in the White House bunker the morning of September
11, 2001.

We in the U.S. military would never consider a military
coup, removing an elected president and installing one of our own.
But following our oath of office, obeying the Nuremberg Principles,
and preventing a rogue president from committing a war crime is not a
military coup. If it requires the detention of executive branch
officials, we will not impose a military dictatorship. We will let
the Constitutional succession take place. This is what we are sworn
to. This is protecting the Constitution, our highest obligation. In
2007, this is what is meant by "Duty, Honor, Country."

Thank you all for your service to this nation. May God
bless America, and sustain us in this difficult time. And thanks for
listening to the musings of an old junior officer.


Robert M. Bowman, PhD,
Lt. Col., USAF, ret.
1494 Patriot Dr,
Melbourne, FL 32940
home phone (321)
752-5955; cell (321) 258-0582


2. The case for Impeachment

A few brave souls on Capitol Hill are calling for
impeachment, but the movement doesn't seem to be going anywhere. The
leadership of the Democratic Party seems to have made a calculated
decision that if they can possibly keep Dick Cheney and George W. Bush
in office until November 2008, then Democrats will sweep the
elections. And they may be right. But there are more important
things than partisan politics.

Never in our history has there been such a strong case for
impeachment. The number of "high crimes and misdemeanors" committed
by Cheney and Bush is staggering.

Many of their offenses involve usurping the Constitutional
powers of the legislative branch and building an "imperial
presidency." Many involve deliberately and arrogantly violating the
law, including the Constitution itself. Many involve abrogation of
our freedoms as guaranteed in the Bill of Rights. Any decent
Constitutional lawyer would be able to draw up Articles of Impeachment
including dozens of offenses for which there is undisputable proof.

However, I propose bringing impeachment proceedings on
only one count — deceiving the Congress and the nation into an
unnecessary and illegal war of aggression in Iraq. (An equally strong
case could be made for the war in Afghanistan, but that's another
count for another day.)

Hardly anyone denies that there is a mountain of proof of
this charge. The only argument against proceeding seems to be that
there is so little time left in their term of office that it doesn't
make sense to spend the time and money involved. I disagree.

Reasons for impeaching Cheney and Bush (regardless of
whether the Senate ever gets around to convicting them) are as

(1) There are still sixteen months left in which this
fascist cabal can do even more evil than they have already done.
Among the possible deeds they may do if not prevented from doing so is
a "false flag" attack against one of our own assets (a city or one of
our carriers in the gulf), blaming it on Iran, and using this
deception to get us into yet another disastrous war, possibly
involving the use of nuclear weapons against Iran's underground
facilities. It will be much easier for the generals and admirals in
the Pentagon to refuse such orders if Cheney and Bush are under

(2) Impeachment will send a message to future presidents
that if they become dictators, violate the Constitution, and ignore
the will of the people, they will NOT get away with it. We will not
let them quietly serve out their term and retire to a ranch in

(3) Impeachment will send a message to the people of the
world that the American people do not support the evil that has been
done in our name. We are now the number one rogue nation on earth.
Moreover, we apparently reelected the perpetrators. If we are to
recover our standing in the family of nations, we must make it clear
that this administration is an aberration that will not be tolerated.

It is not sufficient to just elect a Democrat and hope all
will be well. In all likelihood, it will not. Democrats are not
immune to the allure of power, and all too many of them serve the same
big money interests that control most Republicans.

If we want our Republic back, we the people must insist on
our representatives using the tool provided in the Constitution to
protect us from tyranny — impeachment.

If not now, when?


3. Form a local chapter of The Patriots

If you agree with our drive to "Take Back America", then
consider forming a local chapter of The Patriots. We will help in any
way we can, and will provide the chapter with a web site. Just send
us information about your chapter (Congressional District; contact
name, address, phone number, & email address; and any other
information you have) and we'll get you started. We will provide free
hosting of your web site if you like.


4. The Constitution Project

Some of us carry a pocket copy of the Declaration of
Independence, US Constitution, Bill of Rights, and Amendments to the
Constitution. It's amazing how few Americans know what their rights
under the Constitution really are. How can we get our government to
start following the Constitution if we don't know what it says?

We are therefore starting a project to increase awareness of the
Constitution. We have provided a link to the text on our web site.
We are also hoping to raise enough funds to provide every member of
The Patriots with their own copy. We also plan to provide chapters
with many copies they can distribute.

An aware electorate will not put up with abuses like the
so-called "Patriot Act," the Military Commissions Act, Presidential
Directive 51, and other infringements on our freedoms as Americans.


5. New Guidelines for Event Organizers

Go to and click on "Events." That page will
tell you all you need to know to organize a speaking event for Dr.
Bowman in your community. Such events provide the bulk of our income
to support the activities of The Patriots through the year. They are
vital in bringing in new members and bringing us closer to the
critical mass needed to "Take Back America." Such an event will also
help you gather members for a local chapter.


6. Remember "The Patriots" in your will.

One of the best ways to keep us going is to remember "The
Patriots" in you will or living trust. A bequest to The Patriots will
be most appreciated. Remember, we are a 501c(3) non-profit
organization. All gifts to us are tax-deductible.


7. The Elephant in the Living Room: 9/11 Truth

The corporate media will not address the issues of 9/11 Truth,
except for occasional "hit pieces" putting us down. It's true that
there are a few "kooks" in the movement, but the vast majority are
highly educated, highly credible, and highly rational. See for
example . I (Dr. Bowman) don't know if
anyone in the Bush Administration was complicit in the attacks. It's
quite likely that at least President Bush himself was quite clueless.
But we know there has been a cover-up. Why, we don't know. We're not
sure what they're covering and who they are protecting. We just know
we have not been told the truth. Those of you who share these
troubling thoughts may be interested in a three-minute DVD on our web
site. It's all about World Trade Center Building 7. It's so short
and to the point, we have successfully used it in Congressional
lobbying. Take a look, and feel free to download and copy it. You
may not think it's a "smoking gun," but it's as close as we have. It
should at least open people's eyes to the fact that there's something
fishy about the official conspiracy theory we've been subjected to.
It usually leaves folks wanting more information ... and there's
plenty available.


8. Finally, do go to every week or so, and keep
informed. Together, we can take power away from the global robber
barons and return it to the people.


` Bob

Dr. Bob Bowman