Sunday, January 29, 2006

Call Senator Levin and tell him to support the Alito filibuster.

Senator Carl Levin [MI]
Washington, 202-224-6221 (phone), 202-224-1388 (fax)
Grand Rapids, 616-456-2531 (phone), 616-456-5147 (fax)
Saginaw, 989-754-2494 (phone), 989-754-2920 (fax)
Escanaba, 906-789-0052 (phone), 906-789-0015 (fax)
Traverse City, 231-947-9569 (phone), 231-947-9518 (fax)
Lansing, 517-377-1508 (phone), 517-377-1506 (fax)
Warren, 586-573-9145 (phone), 586-573-8260 (fax)
Detroit, 313-226-6020 (phone), 313-226-6948 (fax)

Oppose Alito

Saturday, January 28, 2006

Sides agree in water dispute

In what is being called a temporary compromise, Nestle and Michigan Citizens for Water Conservation have arrived at an agreement to limit the water withdrawals at Nestle's Mecosta County bottling plant. Meanwhile, MCWC is appealing the ruling of the Michigan Court of Appeals that allowed Nestle to continue its operations.

Thursday, January 26, 2006

~RELEASE~ Post-Address Statement by the Green Party of Michigan (After Granholm “State of the State” & Republican Reply)

Ecological Wisdom * Social Justice
Grassroots Democracy * Non-Violence

Green Party of Michigan

** News Release **
January 25, 2006

For More Information, Contact:
Sylvia Inwood, Chair/Green Party of Michigan

John Anthony La Pietra, Media Committee/GPMI

[for future reference, please send correct/current
contact information (e-mail, fax #, contact person)
to jalp@...]

Post-Address Statement by the Green Party of Michigan
(After Granholm “State of the State” & Republican Reply)

The people of Michigan know the state of our state. Folks need
jobs good enough to sustain a good economy. They yearn for integrity,
for deep change in how the system operates . . . and for whom. They
want to vote for something more than the lesser of two evils – or the
bigger of two corporate tax cuts. Michigan needs a party *of* the
people – a party inspired *by* the people – a party working *for* the

But a party can’t be *for* real people and working families if it’s
parked in the deep pockets of corporations that see human beings as just
another kind of profit center. A party can’t be *for* small farmers and
consumers if it feeds at the trough of agribusiness and factory-farm
special interests. A party can’t be *for* the little people if it’s
hooked on big money. A party has to choose sides.

We’re on *your* side. We’re the Green Party of Michigan.

Greens believe healthy people and a healthy economy go hand in
hand. Statewide universal health care boost our economy more than
throwing billions of tax dollars at big corporations whose purpose is
creating profits for themselves, not jobs for us. Healthier people can
raise up a healthier economy: energy-efficiency, renewable energy, fuel
economy, organic and sustainable agriculture . . . instead of
genetically modified organisms and the espionage-industrial complex.

Greens understand that true progress in education in Michigan
requires a commitment to deal with the poverty which stands between our
students and their birthright of knowledge. We oppose the gross
inequities of current state education funding. And we resist unfunded
Federal mandates that leave no child classtime for learning creative
thinking and cognitive skills . . . or privacy from high-pressure
military recruiting.

Greens say the people’s votes and voices should speak louder than
special-interest money and privilege. We’ve been working to clean up
vote fraud in Detroit . . . to defend community organizers in Benton
Harbor against trumped-up charges . . . to bring trustworthy voting
equipment and election systems to Michigan, and make sure all votes in
Michigan count – and are counted. That can bring fair elections – where
all people have a chance to run (and win), and a reason to vote.
Elections must be clean, too. Greens call for fair and equal public
financing of all campaigns – so candidates have to pay attention to
those of us who vote with our ballots, not our checkbooks. Until that
happens, we’ll go on asking our candidates to reject all PAC money.

Greens remember how Attorney General Granholm once advised a
governor about the need to protect the people’s water rights. But
Governor Granholm has ignored her own advice. All we’ve got to show for
it is a lame proposal on out-of-state water diversions . . . diverting
attention from the need for serious protection against cut-offs,
contamination, or commercialization.

Greens recognize that giving taxpayer money to corporations doesn't
create more jobs, just more profits. Still, both big parties stick with
the same failed strategy. The same money, invested directly in the
people’s business, could create 10,000 state jobs. But the people’s
business gets left undone.

Greens across Michigan – maybe in your community, maybe even on
your local City Council or school board – will keep doing that work.
Fighting discrimination and injustice (yes, they still exist).
Protecting citizens’ rights to peace, privacy, passive resistance
against illegal arrest . . . and polling places with plenty of working,
verifiable (and accessible!) voting machines. Making sure corporate
profiteers know that the water of the Great Lakes State is not a
commodity for sale, but a precious resource that belongs to the people.
Restoring trust in state government – starting with enforcement and
reinforcement of campaign-finance, disclosure, and ethics laws.

The future of Michigan can be a healthy, sustainable economy . . .
a healthy, open democracy . . . a healthy, free people. That future
belongs to the people of Michigan. Let’s go get it – let’s build it –

The Green Party of Michigan. We’re on *your* side.

# # #

For more information on the Green Party of Michigan, and Green
issues and values, or to find out how you can see the Greens’
pre-recorded video response to the “State of the State”, visit:

# # #

created/distributed using donated labor

Green Party of Michigan
548 South Main Street
Ann Arbor, MI 48104
GPMI was formed in 1987 to address environmental issues in Michigan
politics. Greens are organized in all 50 states and the District of
Columbia, as well as in 79 countries on six continents. Each state
Green Party sets its own goals and creates its own structure, but US
Greens agree on Ten Key Values:

Ecological Wisdom
Grassroots Democracy
Social Justice
Community Economics
Respect for Diversity
Personal/Global Responsibility
Future Focus/Sustainability

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Green Party of Canada

Here's some of the official Green Party vote counts in yesterday's Canadian election:

Percentage nationally: 4.5%
Number of votes: 665,940

Best province: Alberta, 6.6%
Best riding (percentage): Bruce--Grey--Owen Sound, 12.9%
Best riding (number of votes): Ottawa Centre, 6,766 votes

Best riding percentage-wise in:

* Newfoundland and Labrador: Random--Burin--St. George's, 1.4%
* Prince Edward Island: Egmont, 5.2%
* Nova Scotia: Halifax, 5.2%
* New Brunswick: Madawaska--Restigouche, 3.3%
* Quebec: Westmount--Ville-Marie, 8.3%
* Ontario: Bruce--Grey--Owen Sound, 12.9%
* Manitoba: Winnipeg Centre, 7.0%
* Saskatchewan: Souris--Moose Mountain, 5.2%
* Alberta: Calgary Centre-North, 11.8%
* British Columbia: British Columbia Southern Interior, 11.3%
* Territories: Nunavut, 5.9%

more detailed results from the Elections Canada website, including a tab-delimited file for anyones use.

Now that's a real tool of participatory democracy. I can color my map of Canada any shade of green I like.

And here's a letter to the editor of the Toronto Star decrying the first-past-the-post election system we share with Canada. It makes a great point and I wouldn't doubt that the editors removed the mention of IRV that follows from it.

GPMI State Membership Meeting

Green Party of Michigan State Membership Meeting

February 18th & 19th 2005, in Grand Rapids

9 :00 Setup tables, coffee, registration
:15 Setup for silent auction
:45 Announcements
10 :00 Officer, nat'l. rep reports
:45 Break (auction bids)
11 :00 View SOS response DVD
:15 Discussion – using media
:30 (DVD, Green Light, Green Pages)
:45 Discussion of proposal for
12 :00 fundraising committee, chair
:30 Lunch break in union hall
:45 (auction bids)
1 :00
:30 Delphi workers presentation
:45 (Ken Mathenia)
2 :00
:15 Elections – clearinghouse Coord.,
:30 Fundraising chair, other if needed
3 :00 Break (FINAL auction bids)
:15 Benton Harbor presentation
:30 (Rev. Pinkney)
:45 Resolutions
4 :00
:15 Finish silent auction
:30 Tour – Environmental Action
:45 Center building, explanation of
5 :00 local environmental activism
:15 (off- site)
:30 Jane Jarlsberg
6 :00 Dinner break
:15 (off- site)
7 :00 Public viewing of movie:
:15 “The End of Suburbia”
:30 Oil Depletion and the collapse of
:45 the American dream
8 :00 (78 minutes running time)
:15 Discussion of movie, energy wars,
:30 & holding movie viewings as a
:45 method of outreach
9 :00

9 :00 Discussion & vote (IRV)
:15 on membership proposals
10 :00 Budget and fundraising
:15 (Pete and/or David)
:30 Discussions
11 :00 Break
:15 Back to budget and fundraising
:30 (Pete and/or David)
:45 Decisions
12 :00
:15 Lunch -or brunch
:30 (off-site unless we order delivery)
1 :00
:15 2007 National meeting -
:30 Proposal to host
:45 (Matt Abel)
2 :00
:15 Plant a Tree project and SOA
:30 (Lynn Meadows)
3 :00 Clean up and clear out

Comments on draft agenda

Overall, Saturday has about a day and a half worth of activities. Then Sunday has an early ending, just in case - unlikely as this may be - the weather in Grand Rapids in February is bad and people want to get on the road while there is still some daylight.

There is no session specifically for 2006 election planning. I expect that topic will be absorbed for this meeting by the sessions on budget and fundraising. That is, we are trying to raise funds for the election and we are trying to budget for the election. I anticipate that, at the spring meeting, we will be going over materials for a campaign school, discussing how to recruit candidates, and other sorts of direct election planning.

The viewing of the new SOS response video has been placed immediately after the officer reports so that, if the reports run long, the viewing part can be dropped. This is not an invitation for these reports to run over. It is a warning that, if they do run over, the time for the next topic will suffer.

It is my understanding that we are going to have a fundraising committee with an elected chair, the chair being an unpaid volunteer just like every other party officer and/or standing committee chair. It will then be the business of this committee to define the job of a "professional" fundraiser and to hire one. Whether this amounts to the committee recommending a person and a contract to the SCC, or if the committee itself is empowered to set the terms and hire the person, is yet to be determined.

To me, it makes sense to empower the committee to set the terms and to hire the person, if the SMM decides in principle to hire a fundraiser. Inserting the SCC as an additional bureaucratic hurdle, especially given that the SCC works through a cumbersome process of e-mails, would not be a good idea.

At any rate, I hope this understanding is close to something everyone can agree on, because I've set the SMM up to discuss the fundraising committee on Saturday, and elect a chair then if necessary. Then a big part of Sunday is set up to be, essentially, a face-to-face meeting of this committee, but with the authority of an SMM to make fundamental decisions.

Saturday afternoon and evening thus became the time to discuss issues, rather than internal party business. Because there are three clear proposals on membership criteria, and because membership criteria set some of the parameters of fundraising, a decision on membership is set for the first item of business on Sunday.

Art Myatt

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

The Green Party's Rush Limbaugh

I don't know who wrote the subtitle: 'bombast and self-promotion in cyberspace' but it very well may have been Gregg Jocoy. He does call himself the Green Rush Limbaugh. And I think this article and his blog at go a long way in proving him right. With a direct matter-of-fact style of delivery, good insights and connections in the Green Party, he's become the leading Green blogger since Ken Sain.

Michigan Green Matt Abel nominated to GPUS Steering Committee

As you may know, the last spot on the 7 member Steering Committee of the Green Party of the US has been open since the National Meeting in Tulsa, OK last July. Issues with the election and the inability of the National Committee to remedy them have led the Steering Committee to call for a new election. Nominations were open until this last Monday, and just before the deadline, Pat LaMarche, who rode our national ticket as the vice-presidential candidate and is currently running for governor of Maine, nominated our own Matt Abel to the position. Matt will be running against Jason Nabewaniec of NY and Budd Dickinson of CA. Noticeably absent from the candidates is Kristen Olson of MN, who, along with Tom Sevigny of CT, was said to have won the seventh seat depending on which system of Single Transferable Vote was used. Kristen has not accepted the nomination in this new election and Tom has since resigned his position in GPUS. While there is a proposal submitted to the National Committee to seat Kristen, it appears to this observer that it will fail and a new election will be held.

Monday, January 16, 2006

"Now is the time."

"Now is the time to make real the promises of democracy."

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr's "I Have A Dream" Speech, as a Podcast as well as an MP3.

Saturday, January 14, 2006

MLK March in Detroit on Monday

MLK Day Freedom March & Rally
12:00 Monday January 16 at Central United Methodist Church

The theme for 2006 is "Freedom From the Shackles of War, Racism & Poverty."

2006 will be a monumental year as it relates to the struggles for peace and social justice. With the continuing wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and the growing socio-economic crisis in the country, people of conscious need outlets to express their determination to see fundamental changes in our lifetimes. The march and rally on January 16 will provide such an opportunity to connect with other progressive people and to build networks aimed at fostering change.

The growing budget deficit in Detroit, the attacks on the standard of living of working people by the corporate structures, the efforts to outlaw affirmative action in Michigan and the total neglect of hundreds of thousands of our brothers and sisters displaced from New Orleans and the Gulf region, illustrates clearly the necessity of the majority of the population to take control of their own destinies.

We are in need of volunteers to assist us in distributing leaflets, to work as marshalls, assisting the parade puppets and media aides during the march, donating winter clothing items for the outreach programs supporting the homeless, as well as mobilizing people throughout the city of Detroit and the southeastern Michigan region to participate in this historic annual event.

Please join us in building this important event. This is the third consecutive year that a demonstration has been organized to specifically honor the peace and social justice legacy of Dr. King in downtown Detroit. For more information just contact us by telephone, e-mail or regular mail.

Flyers and sponsorship forms for the MLK Day events can be downloaded from the MECAWI website at
or leaflets are available for pick-up at the Central United
Methodist Church information desk located on Woodward avenue
at Adams in downtown Detroit.

In Solidarity,
Abayomi Azikiwe, Detroit MLK Committee

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Super Bowl Blackout

Is the NFL ignoring Detroit's African-American owned businesses in awarding Super Bowl contracts? This article in the Michigan Citizen certainly makes a strong case that it is. And while the host committee has some impressive numbers that seem to address the issue, they are unwilling to disclose the dollar amount for contracts that went to Black businesses.

Thursday, January 05, 2006

United Auto Workers Are Marching In Detroit To Say, “No Concessions”

When: Sunday, January 8, 2006
Time: 12PM till 4PM

Where: The Cobo Conference Center
Address: One Washington Street, Detroit, MI 48226-4420
Directions: Available At Yahoo Maps
Flyer 1: March In Detroit Handbill 1
Flyer 2: March In Detroit Handbill 2
PDF Flyer: March In Detroit Handbill PDF File
Zip File Flyer: March In Detroit Handbill Zip File
For more information contact: Todd M. Jordan or Gregg Shotwell
Call: 765-210-0768 or 616-451-4401

On January 8, 2006 rank-n-file united auto workers will march in Detroit, Michigan to protest at the North American International Auto Show. In solidarity we will picket the Cobo Conference Center in protest of the attack on working people by GM-Delphi.

It is time for working men and women to stand up and demand the respect we deserve. We ask that you join with the Soldiers of Solidarity on the sidewalks surrounding the auto show. Bring your own signs and show support for working families whose very livelihoods are under attack by GM-Delphi.

Press Conference Schedule

7:00 am Media Credential Office Opens/Oakland Concourse
8:45 - 9:10 am ASC / Michigan Hall
9:20 - 9:45 am Johnson Controls/D2-15
10:00 am Show Floor Opens
10:15 - 10:30 am NAIAS Co-Chairs Opening Ceremony
10:30 - 11:00 am North American Car and Truck of the Year Awards
11:30 am - 12:15 pm Ford Motor Company / Cobo Arena
12:25 am - 12:50 pm Lexus / Riverview Ballroom
1:00 - 1:25 pm Infiniti
1:35 - 2:00 pm Hyundai
2:10 - 2:35 pm General Motors
2:45 - 3:10 pm Chrysler Group
3:20 - 3:45 pm Mercedes-Benz
3:55 - 4:20 pm Audi
4:30 - 4:55 pm Honda
5:05 - 5:30 pm Mazda / Mazda Stand
5:40 - 6:00 pm College for Creative Studies / Location TBA
6:10 - 6:35 pm General Motors

Forward, Forward, Forward. See you in Detroit brothers and sisters. Stay tuned to for up to date information regarding this historic picket and the automotive industry crisis.

Para la revoluciĆ³n,
Kyle Taylor

Monday, January 02, 2006

Michigan Republicans turn state into trash bin

Already one of the nations leading importers of other people's trash, Michigan is now no longer protected by restrictions on new landfills, thanks to the Republicans who control our state legislature.

Once again the worlds largest body of fresh water, the Great Lakes, is being treated like a toilet bowl.