I didn't really have to read this opinion piece from veteran Houston Press contributor Jef Rouner, because I'm pretty sure I remember reading nearly identical columns from him in 2016 and subsequent years. (He provides a link to his piece from that year in Free Press Houston.) The 2020 edition shows that he has learned nothing in the intervening years. Even worse, he doesn't want to learn.
Truth to tell, Rouner made come good points in 2016—e.g., ascribing more blame to Democrats who voted for George W. Bush than to Ralph Nader and his voters for Bush's victory in 2000. I don't find nearly as much redeeming value in his screed published this past Monday.
For a reasonably intelligent human and a more-than-half-decent writer, Rouner flat doesn't get it. He knows that a certain percentage of the US electorate has graduated from grumbling, "We really need another political party, because neither of the major parties represents my views!" to actually voting for existing parties outside the duopoly—and loudly encouraging fellow citizens to do the same. But he can't for the life of him fathom why we would leave the proverbial reservation.
My US Senate candidacy feels a tad more legit now.
I had to email the appropriate editor at Ballotpedia with my photo, as I had somehow forgotten to include it in my profile submission, and it's awfully hard to edit a profile once it's submitted.
Below the fold are a few excerpts from my responses to the Candidate Connection questionnaire. The questions are not presented in the same order as on the actual questionnaire—e.g., the lighter human-interest stuff like "What's your favorite book and why?" was toward the end, whereas here it's closer to the beginning.
For several reasons, this campaign is not accepting monetary contributions at this time. To show your $upport for the Green Movement, please donate to one of the following:
Howie Hawkins & Angela Walker, Green Presidential Ticket
Hawkins/Walker 2020 is getting federal matching funds for all donations up to $250 through 27 August.
Lisa Savage for US Senate
Lisa Savage is running as a Green Independent for the US Senate seat currently occupied by Susan Collins; Maine has Ranked Choice Voting for elections at all levels.
Hal & Brody
Two Green candidates in Texas actually paid the newly required filing fees when they applied last December to run for office.
I spontaneously decided to live-tweet this Presidential Nominating Convention thingy. See the link to the thread below.
Apart from the nominations, the best news of the day is that the Credentials Committee and the GPUS Steering Committee reviewed and rejected the challenges leveled against the delegations of four states and one caucus. As mentioned previously in this space, the challenges, mostly filed well after the deadline for such things, alleged that our delegates (yes, including those from Texas) were chosen using fishy math. Second-best is that, at least for delegates, this was the most stress-free Presidential Nominating Convention ever, in my view and that of several longtime Greenies of my acquaintance.
It's well beyond the time for me to take time out from posting my Green thoughts and write something about the murder of Army Specialist Vanessa Guillén. The phrase "brutally murdered" is used in the media and in conversations with knee-jerk frequency, mostly to show that we know how to use adverbs. It's like how decades after the police beatdown of Rodney King we still hear serious journalists refer to him as "African American motorist Rodney King," as if that were his entire identity, a black guy with a car.
"Brutally" does not even begin to describe this horror movie in real life.
Just as George Floyd's murder-by-cop awakened millions to the value of black lives and the systemic rot in police culture, Vanessa's murder-by-colleague may serve to awaken millions to the rape culture that is rampant in our armed services—which in turn is a reflection, if somewhat distorted, of our society as a whole.
As the GPUS Annual National Meeting gets underway, we're gonna paint BLACK LIVES MATTER in big green letters on Memory Lane. Also, GREEN NEW DEAL and MEDICARE FOR ALL.
All the videos below have some connection with Texas or Howie Hawkins (who is mentioned briefly in the first video as a co-founder of the Green Movement). Three of them take place in the Lone Star State.
We begin with a quick & clean history of US Greendom from the 1980s through 2018:
Presidential kandidate kat swift (aka katija gruene), freshly turned presidential age, at the 2008 PNC in Chicago:
Dr. Jill Stein in solidarity with the Texas Tar Sands Blockade and against the Keystone XL Pipeline in 2012:
Former Young Turk Jordan Chariton interviewing delegates Ursula Rozum (NY) and Eman Eizenga (NC) at the 2016 PNC at the University of Houston:
Kwame Rose interviewing the late, BAD Bruce A. Dixon for The Real News at the 2016 PNC:
Wow. I've been saying for months that I would publish the links for non-delegates to watch the Green Party's Presidential Nominating Convention as soon as I got them. Now, as the Annual National Meeting is beginning (the first workshops are starting as I type), we finally have them. I have copied and pasted the email, with minor punctuation and formatting edits, below.
The big show begins Saturday the 11th at 11 am Central Daylight, scheduled to conclude by 7 pm. You can catch the livestream on your choice of three platforms while we delegates are glued to a marathon Zoom session.
Be there or be obsequious, purple, and clairvoyant.
This Saturday, you can be a part of history in the making as the Green Party selects its 2020 Presidential and Vice Presidential candidates!
It's too late to register to formally "attend" but anyone can tune in live on three—count 'em three—different platforms!
Tune in this Saturday, July 11th at 12 PM Eastern on:https://www.gp.org/live
It's NOT too late to get a ticket for the Friday night fundraiser featuring Ron Placone!
7/10 Green Party Online Convention Celebration and Fundraiser
Support the Green Party with a Night of LIVE Comedy, Right From Your Home--Order Tickets Now
Ron Placone is one of the funniest, fiercest and most fearless comedians in the Left—or anywhere ELSE for that matter! He is an all-star, regular contributor to The Jimmy Dore Show and has been seen on CrossTalk, TMZ, FreeSpeechTV, The Young Turks, Redacted Tonight and more. His debut album, “Agnostic Holiday” is in rotation on SiriusXM. He hosts the YouTube show/podcast, Get Your News On With Ron.
Join us for these two great events!Green Party of the United States
p.s. Can't make it? You can still help the Green Party fight for Real Solutions That Can't Wait at all levels of government by making a donation today.
Content warning: muchos F-bombs and other impolite language. It's also LMAO hilarious to those of us who have been following Green politics closely in recent years, especially in this inexplicable year 2020.
Somebody give this Howie Hawkins delegate a Snickers bar. Click the Read More to see the complete rant (author's name withheld by request).
Elsewhere in this online discussion for Hawkins delegates to the Green Party's 2020 Presidential Nominating Convention, this person showed an ability to express sound reasoning in English, along with an impressive acumen for ranting. They had similarly harsh words, also in all caps, for Dario Hunter and his supporters, but I'm not going to include them here.
A bit of context may be necessary from some readers:
As we noted recently, Dario Hunter's challenge to some state Green Parties' delegate allocation process is getting support on Twitter from some people who call themselves Greens and want to install Jesse Ventura as the Greens' presidential nominee. Ventura did not make any noise about running for the nomination until all the filing deadlines had passed and half of the primary voting had taken place, so that's a non-starter. Ventura is no more likely than Kanye West to be elected president this year.
Let it be known that I bear no hatred for Hunter or Ventura, or even for their supporters. If Ventura had pursued the nomination from the beginning, he might have garnered enough support to win the nomination, and it's possible that his name recognition would win the Greens more votes than presumptive nominee Hawkins.
But seeing so much profound stupidity and ignorance (yes, there's an important distinction) from these folks on Twitter makes me queasy. Ignorance of the process is only partly their fault: Mass media outlets don't do enough to educate people about it; even if they did, the information would likely have to compete with the tsunamis of mis- and disinformation already in circulation. This is why I am keen to convince Greens and Green sympathizers to become active within the Party, so that they will understand what goes into creating and maintaining a "third-party" campaign.
I hope all that context doesn't spoil the message below the fold.
For those not participating in the Green Convention, you have another option, courtesy of the Movement for a People's Party: Pay a visit to your Congresscritter's home and ask—no, not ask, demand—"Hey Congresscritter, WTF is up with all this COVID relief legislation that's throwing trillions of dollars at the biggest corporations instead of the people who need it?"
Per the current map, the Houston-based rally is happening at what they're calling the home of Senator Ted Cruz but is actually Armando's Ristorante, 2630 Westheimer Road near Kirby Drive. It's not that MPP considers our Democratic Congressional contingent any less culpable, but Cruz is a particularly convenient target.
UPDATE: They've added a second action at Sheila Jackson Lee's place—or not. 5321 Breen Drive does not look like a Congressmember's residence. SJL does have her Acres Homes office at West Montgomery Road near West Little York, but it's a 4.4-mile slog from the Breen address. I gotta wonder who's vetting these addresses. Perhaps the idea is to meet at Breen and then carpool to the Acres Homes location?
Kayleen and I have both decided that the PNC, which is scheduled for an eight-hour block from 11 am to 7 pm Central Daylight Time on Saturday, will be difficult if not impossible to get through without a stiff drink or two. Listening in on the Platform Committee hearings last night and the night before confirmed our decision. Still, today's press release has me all excited.
Blogging Sporadically since 2014
Here you will find political campaign-related entries, as well as some about my literature, Houston underground arts, peace & justice, urban cycling, soccer, alt-religion, and other topics.