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Green Party campaign for U.S. President, 2012

M. Spector
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Joined: Feb 19 2005

See below

 

 

 


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M. Spector
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Joined: Feb 19 2005

The Real News interview with Jill Stein, frontrunner in the Green Party primaries

The Green Party campaign is a social democratic campaign, and should be supported by all U.S. (and Canadian) social democrats.

Unfortunately, many social democrats on both sides of the border prefer to support parties that represent the interests of big capital, like the Democratic Party, the Liberal Party, or the Conservative Party.


autoworker
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Joined: Dec 21 2008

50 years after "Silent Spring", a few more ears are present to hear a tree fall in the wilderness. 'It's not easy being Green'!


Doug
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Joined: Apr 17 2001

I still think they'd do better to focus on a few of the more promising House districts than trying to elect a Presidential candidate.


M. Spector
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Joined: Feb 19 2005

If you think the aim of the Green Party is to get into the Oval Office, then you understand nothing about their campaign.


Ken Burch
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Joined: Feb 26 2005

I'm actually not sure what their aim is.   But whatever it is, the presidential campaign strategy hasn't come close to achieving anything, and there's no evidence at all that a big Green vote producing a Republican plurality presidency(which, after all, is all that the strategy has any real hope of achieving) has or can lead to anything progressive or positive.  The 2000 Nader campaign did not exactly end up leading to peaceful revolution.

They should be working for electoral reform and grassroots organizing of activists on environmental, social, and economic justice issues-working more with Occupy and other resistance sectors.  Running a sacrificial lamb for president does't achieve the aim of radicalizng the country...nor does it, unfortunately, have the effect of squeezing any meaningful concessions out of the Democrats.

What's there to defend in the current strategy?


Boom Boom
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Joined: Dec 29 2004

Until this thread started, I didn't even know there was a Green campaign in the USA this year. Frown


M. Spector
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Joined: Feb 19 2005

Boom Boom wrote:

Until this thread started, I didn't even know there was a Green campaign in the USA this year. Frown

That's why I started it.

Even some people who live in the US don't know about or understand the Green Party campaign.

The very fact that we're discussing it here proves that a GP presidential campaign is an excellent way to get noticed among the social democratic left - in a way that running for dogcatcher in Sioux City never would - and provides a platform for wide dissemination of radical ideas.

But that won't stand in the way of those who are in thrall to the big capitalist parties dragging out the revisionist-history talking points about how Ralph Nader let George W. Bush win the presidency!


Boom Boom
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Joined: Dec 29 2004

Thanks, MS. I look forward to the discussion in this thread.


wage zombie
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Joined: Dec 8 2004

If I were USian I'd be joining right now and voting for Rosaeane Barr in that primary.


M. Spector
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Joined: Feb 19 2005

You really think she's better than Jill Stein, or do you actually care?


wage zombie
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Joined: Dec 8 2004

I guess I don't know so much about Jill Stein.  I do know a lot about Roseanne Barr and I trust her courage as well as her values.

Additionally I think both Roseanne's personality and fame would give her huge advantages that typical third party (US) candidates do not enjoy.  I think she will be able to call bullshit and have the media report it.

I had never heard of Jill Stein before Roaseanne announced, and I haven't seen any video clips since.  I'll wait to pass judgement.  I would have to be very impressed with her indeed to feel like she would bring as much as Roseanne.

I think Cynthia McKinney has great values but I'm not really sure what her run accomplished.  I feel like Roseanne guarantees having a voice.


M. Spector
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Joined: Feb 19 2005

wage zombie wrote:

I guess I don't know so much about Jill Stein...

I had never heard of Jill Stein before Roaseanne announced, and I haven't seen any video clips since.  I'll wait to pass judgement.  I would have to be very impressed with her indeed to feel like she would bring as much as Roseanne.

You could start by watching the video I linked to in Post #1 above.

 


howeird beale
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Joined: Jan 13 2011

I'm asling this as a neutral question, honest to Gawd:

How come you never hear about any connections between the European Greens and either the Canadian or US Greens?


M. Spector
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Joined: Feb 19 2005

Because there is none.


Lord Palmerston
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Joined: Jan 25 2004

Thanks for posting this, M. Spector.  A refreshing antidote to the two business parties.  


Boom Boom
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Joined: Dec 29 2004

Meanwhile, Santorum just dropped out of the GOP primary race.


Lord Palmerston
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Joined: Jan 25 2004

Also of interest: former Salt Lake City mayor Rocky Anderson.

http://www.counterpunch.org/2012/03/06/rocky-versus-the-capitalists/


Bec.De.Corbin
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Joined: Mar 17 2010

Well there's no Green party canadates in my district (31)...

http://web.txgreens.org/sites/default/files/Green%20Party%20of%20Texas%202012%20candidates.pdf

 

 

 


M. Spector
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Joined: Feb 19 2005

Lord Palmerston wrote:

Also of interest: former Salt Lake City mayor Rocky Anderson.

http://www.counterpunch.org/2012/03/06/rocky-versus-the-capitalists/

Thanks for that, LP. I've started a new thread on Anderson's campaign.


Aristotleded24
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Joined: May 24 2005

Seriously Ken, what are you up to here? You have been freaking out about Mulcair leading the NDP and where will he take the NDP and will the NDP be worth supporting for months. Yet in spite of many legitimate issues there are with Mulcair, as Prime Minister he will still end up leading a government that is noticeably farther left than most governments Canada's elected (with the possible exception of the immediate post-war period and when the NDP held the balance of power in the 60s and 70s), certainly farther left than the Harper Conservatives. As for the Democrats, what have they done? Is there any issue of substance on which Obama has acted differently than the Republicians? What about the horrible precedent that Obama set by not holding members of the Bush Administration responsible for their crimes? And the fact that Obama has basically catered to the desires of the moneyed elite that has both the Democratic and Republican parties in a stranglehold at the expense of average, everyday Americans?

No, the Greens or any other third party campaign isn't what threatens the Democrats. It's the refusal of the Democrats to stand up for their voters that causes the problems. When people are presented with real Republicans or fake Republicans, they'll vote for the real ones. The Democrats are in trouble either way, the best the left in the US can do is build up a viable movement that challenges Republican ideology so that voters have a real choice.


wage zombie
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Joined: Dec 8 2004

M. Spector wrote:

You could start by watching the video I linked to in Post #1 above.

So I watched it.  Jill Stein seems articulate and intelligent.  I agree with her values and priorites.  I think she understands the issues.  And I like the Green New Deal.  She strikes me as more of a socialist than a Green.

Beyond that, I don't know.  She's not the best speaker...lots of "um"s and "uh"s, and she's a bit dry.  I was willing to listen for the whole clip but I don't know if others would. Frankly I'd say there were at least half a dozen people at Occupy Vancouver would could give at least as good an interview.  She'd be running for president.

I would expect the media just to ignore her campaign away.  I didn't see anything to suggest that she will be particularly good at getting her message through the owned media filter.

So yeah, I would still much rather see Roseanne Barr get the Green nomination because I think she will have a a louder voice.  Jill Stein will criticise and admonish Obama.  Roseanne would mock him and I think that would go a lot further.

From what I've heard though I think Roseanne is running to increase Jill Stein's profile...so we'll see.


Boom Boom
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Joined: Dec 29 2004

Aristotleded24 wrote:
 Is there any issue of substance on which Obama has acted differently than the Republicians?

Obamacare? The Repugs seem determined to kill it.


Ken Burch
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Joined: Feb 26 2005

Aristotleded24 wrote:

Seriously Ken, what are you up to here? You have been freaking out about Mulcair leading the NDP and where will he take the NDP and will the NDP be worth supporting for months. Yet in spite of many legitimate issues there are with Mulcair, as Prime Minister he will still end up leading a government that is noticeably farther left than most governments Canada's elected (with the possible exception of the immediate post-war period and when the NDP held the balance of power in the 60s and 70s), certainly farther left than the Harper Conservatives. As for the Democrats, what have they done? Is there any issue of substance on which Obama has acted differently than the Republicians? What about the horrible precedent that Obama set by not holding members of the Bush Administration responsible for their crimes? And the fact that Obama has basically catered to the desires of the moneyed elite that has both the Democratic and Republican parties in a stranglehold at the expense of average, everyday Americans?

No, the Greens or any other third party campaign isn't what threatens the Democrats. It's the refusal of the Democrats to stand up for their voters that causes the problems. When people are presented with real Republicans or fake Republicans, they'll vote for the real ones. The Democrats are in trouble either way, the best the left in the US can do is build up a viable movement that challenges Republican ideology so that voters have a real choice.

I'm hardly freaking out.  I'm just pointing out that the Greens aren't actually accomplishing anything through a presidential campaign.  If that strategy worked, we'd have seen a MASSIVE increase in Green support after 2000.  Yet after 2000, they withered and died across the US.   Saying that has nothing at all to do with the question of whether the Greens elected Bush(I actually don't think that they did and didn't mean to imply that they had).  What I'm saying is that the Greens can't win a presidential election, and that by itself makes it useless for them to run.  The ONLY reason to run for the presidency is to actually try to get elected to it.

The day is past in which losing presidential campaigns can build political movements in the US.  Why would anyone think otherwise?

And, if none of the past Green presidential candidacies succeeded in getting concessions out of the Democratic ticket(and I agree that the Democratic party deserves any criticism from the left that it gets)why would anyone think that tactic would work in the future?

Still, I suppose they'll run.  It can't help anything, but they'll run and they have a right to.  So will Rocky Anderson.  Good luck to them both.

But we need to be honest about the history, here:

No Green presidential campaign has succeeded in spreading radical values across the US, or in building that party, or in helping to create a culture of resistance, a culture we sorely need.  So why bother repeating it when it can't work if it hasn't worked YET?  The only people who have succeeded in building a resistance movement have been Occupy, a group in which the Greens have had little if any influence.

And why have they refused to seriously involve themselves in work for electoral reform?

It would not be retreat for the Greens to focus on winnable races.  It would be effective politics. 

 


Ken Burch
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Joined: Feb 26 2005

And yes, Obama has been a let-down, but it would not be a neutral outcome if he were replaced by Romney.  And it couldn't possibly be a situation in which radical politics could grow.  The fact that radicalism didn't grow anywhere under Nixon in the early Seventies, or under Reagan in the Eighties or  under Bush the Younger bears me out.


Why would you think it would be any different under Romney?  Why would it not be just as bad for organizing and resistance under him as it was under Nixon, Reagan, or either Bush?  How can you think there'd be any space at all, or any chance to create liberated  zones?

(You WILL concede, I hope, that a third-party left candidate can't actually get elected this fall.)

And I do agree that Mulcair would be more radical than anything we're likely to get in the States-don't get me wrong about that.

What you have to understand about U.S. politics is the difference the Electoral College makes-that, by itself, massively constrains the situation down here.  Imagine what it would be like if Mulcair had to carry six out of ten provinces to get elected, rather than just a plurality of the seats in parliament(or a majority if possible)?


That's why I've said, over and over again, that the left in the U.S. needs to put electoral reform first.  Nader,  for whatever twisted reasons, always dismissed that.

 


M. Spector
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Joined: Feb 19 2005

Ken Burch wrote:

The ONLY reason to run for the presidency is to actually try to get elected to it.

I guess Debs was just wasting his time.

The fool should have supported Woodrow Wilson.

 


Ken Burch
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Joined: Feb 26 2005

It was different in Debs era.  The Democratic party was to the right of the Republicans then.  You can't compare that to the present.


In Debs era, there was nothing to lose.  There hadn't been the New Deal yet.  It was possible for third-party efforts to build a Left then.  But that possibility no longer exists.  Can't you see that the current situation has nothing in common with 1920? 

If we lost all that remains of the New Deal, the whole struggle would die with it.   It couldn't lead to a radical uprising.

And I would never have supported an imperialist segregationist like Woodrow Wilson-it's disgusting that you'd imply that I would.  In that era, I'd have voted for Debs.  But that era isn't this era, and we all know that, without electoral reform, third parties are useless now in the U.S.

It's movement organizing like Occupy that can work.  Not running losing candidates.  No one can ever be inspired by a losing candidate in the U.S. again...no one was inspired by Ralph.   His campaigns left nothing behind at all.


Ken Burch
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Joined: Feb 26 2005

I just don't get why you put destroying the Democratic Party before any and all other objectives for the U.S. Left., Spector.  Why you think that is worth going back to Bush-style immiseration.


wage zombie
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Joined: Dec 8 2004

Obama will win in a cakewalk either way.  Might as well have a Green Party candidate who can provide another voice.

I don't see any risk of "enabling a Republican win" or "destroying the Democratic party".  Also Gary Johnson will get at least 3% running as the Libertarian candidate.

There are many reasons for the Green Party to run a candidate, and a big one is providing a voice for the people's interests.  I think Roseanne Barr can provide that voice.

Maybe Jill Stein can too--but I haven't seen it yet.  I think Jill Stein would be a good candidate for Senate where she might have a shot of winning.  I'm not sure what sets Jill Stein apart as a candidate for president.


autoworker
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Joined: Dec 21 2008

Julia Butterfly Hill occupied a tree for 738 days. That's dedication to a cause.


Bec.De.Corbin
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Joined: Mar 17 2010

wage zombie wrote:

Obama will win in a cakewalk either way. 

That's pretty dangerous, don't count on it...


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