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Napa Letter: "Vote for Green Party Presidential Candidate Jill Stein"

A letter to the editor from Alex Shantz of Napa, co-coordinator for the Green Party of Napa County, who has asked Napa Patch to publish it. We welcome your letters as well: napa@patch.com.

In this election the American people have two options:  They can vote for more of the same by choosing Romney or Obama.  Or they can help build a political alternative by voting for the Green Party candidate.

Dr. Jill Stein is running for President of the United States on Green Party ticket. Her vice presidential running mate is anti-poverty advocate Cheri Honkala.

Jill Stein is a physician and has been a pioneering environmental-health advocate. She ran for governor of Massachusetts in 2002 and debated Mitt Romney.

Cheri Honkala founded the Poor People's Economic Human Rights Campaign and has been a tireless advocate for the rights of the homeless and poor people.

The centerpiece of their platform is the Green New Deal, which is an emergency program modeled after the New Deal which brought America out of the Great Depression.

Jill Stein’s Green New Deal is based on four pillars:

1. A Green New Deal will establish an economic bill of rights to guarantee employment, living wages, tuition free education, and single payer health care.

2. A Green New Deal will transition America from an oil based economy to a green economy by investing in green businesses and cooperatives, prioritizing research into sustainable and renewable forms of energy, and creating 16 million jobs to build the infrastructure for a green economy.

3. A Green New Deal will reform the  financial system by forgiving homeowner and student debts, regulating all financial derivatives, and forming federal, state, and municipal public-owned banks.

4. A Green New Deal will restore our democracy by ending corporate personhood, instituting ranked choice voting and proportional representation, and allowing all qualified candidates equal access to the ballot and debates.

For more details on the specifics of the Green New Deal visit: http://www.jillstein.org/green_new_deal

Obama has continued many of George Bush’s policies.  He has further eroded our civil liberties through the Patriot Act and National Defense Authorization Act.  He has expanded imperialist conflicts overseas in countries like Libya and through drone strikes in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Yemen, and Somalia.  Instead of pushing for immigration reform, he has deported more undocumented students and workers in his first four years than Bush did in total during his eight years in office.  And, instead of fighting for single payer health care, Obama ushered in a for-profit health care plan that forces people to purchase health care from insurance corporations.

Romney and Ryan would do all they can to dismantle and privatize all the social programs that Americans desperately need, including Medicare and Social Security.  They would engage in class warfare by extending Bush’s tax cuts on the rich.  And they would undermine crucial environmental regulations and allow the market to turn the environment into a commodity.

In the meantime, America is mired in an economic and environmental crisis.  Social and economic inequalities are at a tipping point with the top 1 percent of Americans controlling 43 percent of the wealth while the bottom 80 percent control only 7 percent of the wealth.   Basic human rights, such as education, housing, and health care, are being dismantled.  Climate change and global warming threatens our existence.  And, the corporate duopoly are not discussing these critical issues.

A vote for Jill Stein helps build a political alternative.  Jill Stein has qualified for federal matching funds and is the first Green Party candidate to do so.  If Jill Stein receives 5% of the vote, the Green Party itself will qualify for federal matching funds.  This would allow the Green Party to become an even more viable political alternative.

It also sends a message to the two corporate parties that enough is enough.  In a country of more than 310 million, the American people deserve more than two choices.  Let’s turn the White House into a Green house and vote for Jill Stein for president in this next election.

Napa Patch welcomes letters to the editor. You can email them to napa@patch.com or post them directly in our Local Voices section by clicking the "start a blog" button on our home page. 

Do you have a comment? We'd like to know what you think. Napa Patch asks that commenters use human names, rather than slogans, when taking part in our community conversation. If you'd rather remain anonymous, feel free to email comments to napa@patch.com.

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Belle (Orchid Lady) September 09, 2012 at 08:19 PM
Than you for telling me more about Jill Stein. I would love more than anything to take the 'power away' from the Dems, and the Repubs, and have more, and better choices in elections. I like most of what she wants to do. I honestly have to say, perhaps in 2016 I can consider voting for the Green party, but I cannot possibly bring myself to give my vote away this election. I will be voting for Obama. BUT, for the people I know who aren't planning on voting, because they don't like Obama or Romney, I will forward them this information, and see if voting for Jill Stein is more appealing to them!
Mama San September 10, 2012 at 01:44 AM
the problem is that it is a wasted vote - she will not win and will take votes away from the democrats. I listened to her and she speaks well, but we need to face facts - we are all better off by President Obama continuing in office.
Mama San September 10, 2012 at 02:20 AM
I don't think people understand that they are not just voting for the President they are voting for the ideals and foundation of a whole group. I am not totally happy with things that have happened during President Obama's term but I don't believe in throwing away a vote just to make a point. It will be a point lost if the Republicans and their moneyed backers get into office. I personally do not want to go backward!
Alex Shantz September 10, 2012 at 04:35 AM
I am glad we are on the same page in terms of taking the power away from Dems and Repubs. There are several ways to do this. First, I do disagree with the notion that a vote for Jill Stein is giving ones vote away. A vote for Jill Stein is a purposeful way to not just send a message but also to concretely build a political alternative by helping the Green Party get 5% of the vote. With that said, Obama is polling way ahead of Romney in California. California is not a swing state so I don't think the "spoiler" argument applies here. However, another way to help create a political alternative through the Green Party is by getting people elected into local office. Greens have been elected in Richmond, Fairfax, and Humbolt and have done amazing things. Many aspects of Jill Stein's Green New Deal can be implemented on a local level. Green elected officials on a local level can do just that. Lastly, Prop 14 has put all alternative political parties at a huge disadvantage. Political parties must have 1% of the people who vote in the general election registered within their party otherwise they could lose ballot status. So, if the Green Party resonates with one's values, it is really important for them to register Green in order to maintain the registration threshold to stay on the ballot. Thank you for sharing some of your thoughts.
Alex Shantz September 10, 2012 at 07:12 AM
Thank you for sharing your thoughts. Here are my responses: First, when Ralph Rader ran for president in 2000, exit polls showed that 25% of Rader's voters would have voted for Bush, 38% would have voted for Gore and the rest would not have voted. So, its a myth to claim Greens take votes away from Democrats. And, its a self-serving myth at that. Second, a vote for Jill Stein is NOT a wasted vote. It is a constructive vote to help build a political alternative. If the Green Party receives 5% of the vote they qualify for Federal matching funds. This will significantly increase the ability for the party grow and become an even more viable political alternative. A vote for the Green Party is not just a protest vote, although it is also that. It is a practical step toward creating real change. Lastly, as I demonstrated above Obama has continued many of Bush's policies. The Democrats are the new Republicans. Neither corporate party represents a fundamental alternative. My question for Democrats frustrated by Obama and their party: at what point will we start creating a political alternative?
hazel ibrahim September 10, 2012 at 08:00 AM
voting for Obama is a wasted vote. Do you honestly think the Republicans are going to pass anything? We will sit for four more years and listen to the same retoric, while Obama and the Dems get rid of all the social programs.
hazel ibrahim September 10, 2012 at 08:03 AM
I will vote for the green party and do so for all the remaining national elections until I see some results before i die! My husband will too.
hazel ibrahim September 10, 2012 at 08:07 AM
You have to start sometime to get change. This party is excatly what this country needs. Its not a waste if you believe in what your voting for and stick to your guns! We cannot go on much longer with the garbage we call representation. It has to start now, way overdo!
Ron G. September 10, 2012 at 02:23 PM
"A vote for Jill Stein is a vote for Mitt Romney" might be true in Ohio, Florida, or other swing states, but not in California. So if you'd like to support a better alternative than Obama or Romney, vote smart and vote Green.
Mama San September 10, 2012 at 04:48 PM
Don't forget this was tried with Ralph Nader and what it got us was GW Bush, lots of debt, two wars,young people killed or disabled for life. I'm not willing to take that chance with M. Romney and Ryan. Between the two of them they have less empathy than Geo. Bush had. Don't make history repeat itself.
Eloy35 October 02, 2012 at 09:25 AM
I dislike both parties.Under Bush I lost 80% of my retirement in 08;under Obama my cost of living pay was frozen for 5 years.I would rather "throw"my vote away on Stein and sleep at night than vote for these two idiots.And yes I'm discontented Republican.

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