Batter Up

The Montana Green Party is back in federal district court trying one more time to regain access to the November, 2018 general election ballot.  While it is often hard to see the sense of what one does, I remind myself that some 10,000 Montana voters signed the petition to grant us a chance to compete with the corporate-owned parties in this election cycle.  http://www.krtv.com/story/38882281/montana-green-party-files-suit-in-federal-court-to-gain-ballot-access

For me, this will be the third time challenging Montana’s election laws in federal court.  We’re batting 1000, so why stop now?  Both previous victories, however, did not result in placing the name(s) of candidates on the ballot.  This time is a little different.  Green candidates were certified for the election by the Sec. of State and county clerks before being removed in July by a state judge and Democratic Party — the complainant.

My question:  If elections mean nothing, why all the tight sphincters across state and federal agencies and the MSM when a no-name, third-party candidate gains ballot access in a tiny western state like Montana?

I hope to find out the answer in November.

Campaign of Illusions: Where the Zero Cut Movement to Save the National Forests Went Wrong

Zero-Cut No Commercial Logging again? A quarter century after it became the banner and guiding star for much of the grassroots forest movement, and then over a decade of semi-retirement, the campaign for this legislation is trying to mount a national revival. My question is simple: Is it the best strategy for a collapsed forest movement, daily confronting the debacle of rapidly increasing logging and roadbuilding in the national forests?

The combination of President Trump and an overtly hostile Republican-controlled Congress has shocked the grassroots, non-collaboration forest movement. Awakening from over a decade of a sort of slumber, these forest defense activists are daily burning up internet chat rooms with news chronicling cascading losses in Agriculture and Interior Department rules, regulations, administrative edicts, and newly-passed laws and congressional riders that roll back decades of environmental laws and court victories.

They are stunned to see the reality that their strategy of timber sales appeals and lawsuits are no longer holding back the bulldozers and chain saws of the timber industry and its U.S. Forest Service puppet. As they ponder these mounting losses, they watch their local forests logged with increasing ferocity, a comprehensive assault on public lands with transgressions that few imagined they would live to see. Continue reading “Campaign of Illusions: Where the Zero Cut Movement to Save the National Forests Went Wrong”

How to Rig a U.S. Senate Election

I realize for many POM readers this is nothing out of the ordinary.  There is, however, the possibility that a little explaining may move others from their constant state of cognitive dissonance to a better understanding of the electoral fraud perpetuated every two years in the U.S.  by an army of actors, “players” (and other  predator types) and funders.  Citizen-voters are the mark, always have been.

This particular example is being played out in Montana, USA.  I will be short.  Here https://www.greatfallstribune.com/story/news/2018/06/11/montana-senate-candidates-debate-forums/692623002/ we can see on public display another key element — media manipulation of political debates — of the anatomy of a “rigged election.” This element alone cannot sway an entire election, but helps enforce the myth that there’s an organic “two-party” system.  No journalism, no democracy, no moral foundation, just power and money talking.

As a Green Party candidate, thousands of signatures of registered voters must be gathered just to qualify to appear on the ballot.  Montana has cleverly created a petition deadline in March.  I’m usually skiing from November through March.  So, we can add the March (winter) deadline for third-party signature requirements to the other obstacles erected to eliminate competition.  This year Greens qualified for the ballot.

Add the $1,750 filling fee for U.S. Senate and U.S. House candidates.  In a state with a median annual income of less than $50,000, that can be a significant barrier to any prospective candidate.

Reacting to Greens qualifying for the November ballot, Democrats sued the Montana Secretary of State for certifying “irregular” signatures in key voting districts.  Democrats are desperate to disqualify and remove the Green Party from the ballot.  This lawsuit is pending in state district court, which effectively grinds any Green Party campaign to a halt because of the uncertainty it creates.  Try fundraising in this atmosphere?  Who wants to spend money promoting a Green candidate when it could all end tomorrow by judge’s order?  There is a bit of irony to all this, of course.  For decades Democrats have been screaming about voter suppression by Republicans. They even have an entire plank https://www.democrats.org/party-platform#voting-rights in the party platform on protecting voter’s rights.  So, we can add the list Democrats suing to oust Greens from the ballot and suppress any possibility of voters choosing a Green Party candidate in November’s general election.

Now cometh the Montana Broadcasters Association, cheerfully putting its thumb on the scales of fair competition and open debate.  Alone, this corporate meddling may not be a game-changer, but when added to the other obstacles thrown down to stop competition in American elections, it is significant.  Rigging debates could be the final nail in  Montana’s so-called “democratic-elections.”

The “our democracy” meme is a huge lie we all live with daily.  Repeated ad nauseam in the mainstream media, we’re keeping the illusion alive for unsuspecting voters.  This could be called the “Tinkerbell effect.”  Clap if you want to keep democracy alive.

So, here in Montana, we’re working hard to make sure you cannot vote for the candidate of your choice (association and free speech).  Third party candidates threaten the fake two-party system, and therefore cannot be treated equally under the law, or anywhere in the media either.  The First and Fourteenth Amendments to the U.S. Constitution have no real meaning in everyday American life. Free and fair elections simply do not exist today. And, yes, journalism is as rare as bird shit in a cuckoo clock.

 

Continue reading “How to Rig a U.S. Senate Election”

Trial by Fire

Last evening I participated as one of five presenters in a live-audience,  multi-media discussion/presentation with a group of foresters, a smoke jumper and State of Montana’s tourism specialist in the Dept. of Commerce.  The topic was “Can we manage wildfire; Should we manage wildfire.”  As the lone “tree-hugger” on the stage, I tried to probe other panel members for the reasons for their beliefs – most believed in management as a “solution” to our wildfire “problem.”  Needless to say, the anthropocentric viewpoint predominated.

Soldiering on, I tried very hard to interject a few self-evident truths about nature and fire’s natural role in the continuous mystery of life in its many forms.  When cornered with truth, however, the other participants simply lied to escape reality.  I’m sure they believed their lies, but even to the live audience lying seemed obvious, but generally an acceptable answer to a confrontation with an inescapable truth.  Continue reading “Trial by Fire”

Ditto?

Another alleged school shooting.  Another police drill (“6 weeks ago”) according to MSM reporting.  “Fire drill today” just before the alleged shooting according to MSM.  How many “active shooter drills” do we need?  How many coincide handsomely with mass- school-shooting stories in the MSM.   Today’s number:  54 (9) – the date, and the school’s name (Stoneman Douglas) is a match.   Fear!!!  Order out of chaos.  Create the problem; solve the problem.  Repeat.  More gun control legislation waiting in the wings.  More Chertoff Group, LLC (founded 2009) security contracts — more active shooter drills.  Repeat.  Where it stops, nobody knows.

Killing Cats for Sport and Profit

On January 11, 2018, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) released its “scientific review” of the Canada lynx in the contiguous U.S., which concluded that the species “may no longer warrant protection” under the ESA (Endangered Species Act of 1973).

An estimated 2,000 Canada lynx remain in the wild, its range extends from Maine, to northeastern Minnesota, and westward to western Montana, northeastern Idaho, north-central Washington and western Colorado. Lynx are a long-legged cousin of the bobcat – with tufted ears. Lynx can grow almost 36 inches long and weigh up to 30 pounds. These reclusive, snow-loving cats prefer dense forest habitat and feed primarily on the snowshoe hare, but will take pine squirrels when times are tough.

According to the Fish and Wildlife Service’s own scientist, Megan Kosterman, 50% of each lynx home range must be mature, dense forest to provide optimal habitat for lynx to breed and raise kittens, and no more than 15 percent of each lynx home range should be clearcut. Not a single National Forest is complying with this ecological recommendation – a system failure devastating to population trajectories.  FWS refuses to address this issue. Continue reading “Killing Cats for Sport and Profit”

21st Century Rape Culture

“A human being is a part of the whole called by us universe, a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feeling as something separated from the rest, a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty.”
― Albert Einstein

Is there an environmental “rape culture” in the United States? Yes, of course, there is. Most contemporary ecological problems, or “rape the land” mentality, is deeply rooted in Western patriarchal culture.

Rape (transitive verb) definition for this piece: 1a: (archaic) to seize and take away by force b:despoil 2: to commit rape on Continue reading “21st Century Rape Culture”