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      The Peace Exchange Bulletin

      Published by Tom Hayden, The Peace Exchange Bulletin is a reader-supported journal, critically following the Pentagon's Long War in Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Iraq, as well as the failed U.S. wars on drugs and gangs, and U.S. military responses to nationalism and poverty around the world.

      Wednesday
      Jun222016

      Celebrating the Defeat of Diablo Canyon!

      With the Diablo Canyon's permits expiring by 2024, the threat of nuclear power in California is lifting. Few recall the tens of thousands of protesters rallying against the plant at the height of the fervent "No Nukes" movement of the times. Tragically, the nuclear lobby is gaining ground by apologists who claim that it's clean if radioactive energy needed as a "renewable" resource.

      Click to read more ...

      Wednesday
      Jun222016

      AS AMERICANS WE CANNOT ENDORSE SEN. KERREY'S LEADERSHIP OF A U.S. SPONSORED UNIVERSITY IN VIETNAM 

      Americans from the Vietnam Era should join the many Vietnamese today in questioning the appointment of former Senator Bob Kerrey to chair the board of the Fulbright University of Vietnam, which was announced during President Obama's recent visit.

      Sen. Kerrey's appointment is more a gesture of forgetting rather than of reconciliation, as some believe. Consider his record as an American Navy SEAL, based on New York Times coverage April 25, 2001, and June 2, 2016:

      On the night of Feb. 25, 1969, Kerrey's Navy Seals unit killed 20 Vietnamese villagers, mainly women and children, in the village of Thanh Phong, populated by only 150 people. The weapons used included guns, knives and bare hands. 

      Click to read more ...

      Monday
      May162016

      On President Obama's Trip to Hiroshima

      Vincent Intondi is a Associate Professor of History at Montgomery College and Director of Research for American University’s Nuclear Studies Institute, which organizes annual delegations to Hiroshima. He also is author of the very important book from Stanford University Press, African Americans Against the Bomb: Nuclear Weapons, Colonialism, and the Black Freedom Movement.

      His research reveals the deep, decades-long opposition by African American leaders against the development and final use of the U.S. bombs dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, where the first targets were people of color. It's no accident that Barack Obama was studying ways to end the threat and writing articles for his campus newspaper on this subject while he studied at Columbia University. Now as the first African-American President faces bitter, racist, and hysterical opposition to his planned visit to the Hiroshima shrine and peace park from those Americans who think he will offer an apology to the Japanese. An apology of any kind would be politically awkward to say the least, and is opposed by the Japanese government itself. But the simple presence of Obama in Hiroshima will reverberate around the world as a silent vigil. I urge you to read Vincent Intondi's moving statement below. - Tom Hayden

      Click to read more ...

      Friday
      May062016

      What's the Democratic Peace Platform?

      This year’s Democratic primary debate has been dominated by criticism of Hillary Clinton for her 2002 vote to authorize the Iraq war, and her general support of regime change. It’s forgotten that Bernie Sanders was for regime change as well. This week Jeremy Scahill, author of Dirty Wars and his new The Assassination Complex, sets the record straight on Democracy Now on Bernie’s earlier involvement in promoting sanctions and the overthrow of Saddam Hussein. 

      Click to read more ...

      Monday
      May022016

      Tom Hayden for Democratic National Committee Endorsements

      Dolores Huerta, Labor Movement & Civil Rights Leader

      Hilda Solis, Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors for District 1, Secretary of Labor for President Barack Obama

      Robert Reich, former Secretary of Labor for President Bill Clinton

      State Controller Betty Yee

      State Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones

      Eric Bauman, Chair of the LA County Democratic Party & Vice Chair of the California Democratic Party

      Assemblyman Jose Medina (AD61)

      Assemblymember Jackie Goldberg (ret.), East Area Progressive Democrats

      Assemblymember Nancy Skinner (ret.)

      State Senator Loni Hancock (SD9)

      State Senator Fran Pavley (SD27)

      State Senator Ricardo Lara (SD33)

      State Senator Holly Mitchell (SD30)

      State Senator Martha Escutia (Ret.)

      State Senator Mark Leno

      U.S. Representative Barbara Lee (CA13)

      U.S. Representative Janice Hahn (CA44)

      U.S. Representative Maxine Waters (CA43)

      U.S. Representative Ted Lieu (D-CA33)

      Councilmember Gilbert Cedillo, 1st CD of Los Angeles

      LA County Supervisor Sheila Kuehl

      Los Angeles County Assessor Jeffrey Prang

      LA Mayor Eric Garcetti

      CDP Progressive Caucus

      Jamie Beutler, Chair of the CDP Rural Caucus

      Barry Broad, Lead Chair of CDP Legislation Committee

      John Hanna, Lead Chair CDP Resolutions Committee

      Rachel Binah, Chair Emeritus Environmental Caucus, CDP Resolutions Committee, DNC member

      Carlos Alcala, CDP Chicano Latino Caucus Chair

      Michael Thaller, CDP Progressive Caucus Chair

      Karen Bernal, Former Chair of the CDP Progressive Caucus 

      Darren Parker, CDP African American Caucus Chair 

      Tim Paulson, CDP Labor Caucus Chair, Executive Director, San Francisco Labor Council, AFL-CIO

      Karen Weinstein, Chair Emeritus of the CDP Women's Caucus, Co-Chair of CDP Affirmative Action Committee

      Thomas Patrick O'Shaughnessy, Chair of CDP Irish American Caucus

      Bob Mulholland, DNC Member

      Alice Huffman, President of the California NAACP, DNC Member

      Susie Shannon, CDP Regional Director

      Eric Sunderland, CDP Regional Director

      Martha Gamez, CDP Regional Director

      Tom Camarella, Representing AD54 on the CDP Executive Board

      Russell Greene, Representing AD45 on the CDP Executive Board

      Richard Blackston, CDP Executive Board Member

      Jim Wisely, CDP Executive Board Member

      Jeff Daar, CDP Executive Board Member, Board of Airport Commissioners for the Los Angeles World Airports

      Daniel Tamm, Representing AD46 on the CDP Executive Board

      Paul Ahrens, Representing AD51 on the CDP Executive Board

      Patti Skinner Sulpizio, Representing AD38 on the CDP Executive Board

      Sheila Mickelson, Representing AD62 on the CDP Executive Board

      Lowell Young, CDP Executive Board Member

      Bernice A. Bonillas, CDP Executive Board Member

      Ashleigh Evans, California DNC Delegate

      Cara Robin, CDP Executive Board, President of the WLA Democratic Club

      Laurie Gallian, Mayor of Sonoma

      Ray Gallian, Sonoma County Central Committee member

      Robbie Hunter, President, State Building & Construction Trades of California

      Mimi Kennedy, Activist and Actor

      Andy Spahn, Co-founder & President of Gonring, Spahn & Associates, Inc.

      Ed Begley Jr., Activist & Actor

      Steve Soboroff, Vice President of the Los Angeles Board of Police Commissioners

      Alfre Woodard, Activist and Actor

      Junius Williams, Activist and Author

      Ken Seaton-Msemaji, Founder & former President, United Domestic Workers of America AFL-CIO, Political Director, Sheet Metal Workers Local 206 San Diego

      Kent Wong, Director of the UCLA Labor Center

      Pacific Palisades Democratic Club

      Robert Garcia, The City Project, Environmental Justice Attorney

      V. John White, Executive Director of Center for Energy Efficiency and Renewable Technologies

      Lisa Hoyos, Director and the Co-Founder of Climate Parents

      Vanessa Tyson, Ph.D., Professor of Black Politics, UCLA

      Dan Jacobson, State Director for Environment California

      Joel Reynolds, Western Director, Senior Attorney, Natural Resources Defense Council

      Margaret Prescod, Host of Sojourner Truth on KPFK

      James Fugate, Esowan Books

      Dr. Gerald Horne, John J. and Rebecca Moores Chair of History and African American Studies at the University of Houston

      Jim B. Clarke, Council Member Culver City and Former Party Secretary of CDP

      Hart Bochner, Actor & Environmental activist

      Herbert Siguenza, Richard Montoya & Ric Salinas of Culture Clash

      Peniel E Joseph, Barbara Jordan Chair Designate in Ethics & Political Values and Founding Director Center for the Study of Race and Democracy, LBJ School of Public Affairs

      Linda Escalante, Policy Advocate, NRDC

      Angela Sanbrano, Co-Founder & President Emeritis of NALACC

      Robert Turcotte, Chair of the Plumas County California Democratic Central Committee (former)

      Margie Bernard, Emeritus Vice-Chair of Democrats Abroad, Ireland

      Devra Weber, Associate Professor of History, Ph.D., UCLA

      Alfredo Hernandez, Friends of the Hollywood Central Park

      Larry D. Halstead, Delegate to the CDP

      *All Titles Used for Identification Purposes Only

      To Endorse Tom Hayden for DNC please email contacthayden@gmail.com

      Saturday
      Apr302016

      Democrats Need Power-sharing Agreement to Defeat Trump

      As a California Democrat, I’ve fretted all year about the ominous threat of domestic fascism in our country revealed in the rhetoric and extremism of Donald Trump and his hard-core followers.

      The dangerous undercurrents of the election suggest that the country needs a united front against Trump, combining the best, or at least salvageable, elements from the feuding campaigns of Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders, who, along with independents, can build a majority to win the presidency and possibly take back the U.S. Senate.

      Click to read more ...

      Tuesday
      Apr262016

      Remarks by Tom Hayden to the Vietnam War Summit, LBJ Presidential Library, Austin, Texas, April 26, 2016

      THE POWER OF PROTEST, RESTORING THE MEMORY OF THE PEACE MOVEMENT

      Thank you Mark Updegrove, Director of the LBJ Library

      Thank you Colonel Mark Franklin, Chief of History and Legacy at the Pentagon's Vietnam Commemoration Office

      Thank you Jim Knotts & Reema Ghazi, from the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund

      Thank you Jim Popkin for reaching out at the beginning of this process 

      Thank you for your gracious invitation to this significant opportunity for introspection into the Vietnam War and its peace movement opposition. The reconstructions of our legacies live on. I myself have just finished my third book on Vietnam, to be published next year by Yale University Press, tentatively titled "Vietnam and the Power of Protest." My earlier books appeared decades ago: "The Other Side", with Staughton Lynd [1966, New American Library, 1966], and "The Love of Possession Is a Disease with Them" [Holt Rinehart Winston, 1972.] I also have taught Vietnam classes at Immaculate Heart College, Pitzer and Scripps colleges in Claremont, and a seminar with Democratic staff in the US House of Representatives. Currently, I am excited by the works of Viet Thanh Nguyen, on memory and forgetting, for which he won a Pulitzer Prize this month for his novel, The Sympathizer.

      The debate over the War and anti-war movement is still alive. Last year 1000 peace activists gathered at the New York Avenue Presbyterian Church and the Martin Luther King Memorial in Washington D.C. to challenge and engage with the Pentagon's narrative of the war, which we considered to be unbalanced. Those discussions, held at Fort Myer, have been fruitful, unresolved, and ongoing. I note the presence here today of Joe Galloway, who took part in that first Fort Myer's dialogue.

      Today I am distributing a new House of Representatives Resolution by Rep. Barbara Lee, a peace and justice leader over many years, which commemorates the 50th anniversary of the Vietnam War and the movement to end it. The resolution reads in part that, "The movement to end the Vietnam War was one of the largest and most prolonged efforts to achieve peace and justice in many generations and war critical to bringing and end to the war."

      There is no question of our impact. We helped turn two presidents out of office. We ended military conscription. Year after year, our numbers in the streets grew until it reached millions and became the largest peace movement in our country's history. The peace movement was not unlike the "general strike" described by W.E.B. Dubois in his history of Reconstruction. It included resistance and walkouts among our troops from military bases to battleships. It spread through communities of color, African-American, Puerto Rican, Latino, Native American, and Asian-American, and from there to campus communities in unprecedented student strikes and moratoriums. While hippies were being demonized, they too were withdrawing from what they considered a repressive and militarized culture.  The movement led as well to the opposition of many Democrats and not a few Republicans. The military, the universitie,s and the political order were shaken by the withdrawal of millions from their first attachment to the status quo. American women withdrew from militarism and helped lead the anti-war movement too, as did so many then-closeted LGBT people.  The whole phenomenon deserves greater respect and serious research at future conferences like this.

      Though many Americans will agree with this assessment, many others hold firm to the belief expressed by President George H.W. Bush after the first Gulf War in 1991 that "By God, we've kicked the Vietnam Syndrome once and for all." Thousands of Americans and millions of Iraqis later died in this war to stamp out a syndrome, which President Bush likened to a mental disorder.

      The fundamental reason for these persistent efforts to reclaim victory in Vietnam is a fear in many politicians and their national security advisers of accepting our defeat in 1975. Many of us would argue that the Vietnam war was doomed to failure as early as 1946 when our government armed the French for their march to folly at Dienbienphu, then blocked the nationwide elections promised by the Geneva Accords of 1954.

      An official acceptance of defeat in battle, a kind of Custer Syndrome, would lead to a reputational loss as well a painful acknowledgement to military families that their sons fought honorably but under misguided policies imposed by a bipartisan caste of politicians. The political corollary at home was a frightening threat to our own democracy, from McCarthyism to Watergate to COINTELPRO.

      This backlash continues today. I felt it was astonishing that our Secretary of State, John Kerry, who was a founding member of Vietnam Veterans Against the War [VVAW] was viciously ‘swift-boated’ out of the presidential race in 2004. He suffered wounds in actually fighting communist forces while so many others in office sat home and enjoyed their immunity. An exception that fought and suffered was Senatir John McCain, who went on with Kerry to a historic diplomatic breakthrough when the US-Vietnam relationship was normalized.

      The irony is that our two countries are in a de facto partnership to promote trade and limit China's expansionism in the Pacific.  I myself pray that the partnership fulfills our obligation to do everything possible to treat Agent Orange victims and remove the unexploded ordinance that continues to wound or kill this generation of Vietnamese civilians.

      Here is another painful contradiction we must confront. Hundreds of thousands of South Vietnamese troops were paid for, trained and sent to their deaths under our command, but their honor has never been recognized. One reason that our own government does not recognize their fate is that such a change in policy would entitle their families to benefits. The Boat People are honored, but not the Saigon troops who sacrificed for us. Reconciliation requires respect for their side, from Hanoi to Washington DC.

      The people of Laos and Cambodia are receding from our memory as well.

      I ask you, are we not all Vietnam veterans in our own way? Were we not all lied to and divided by our government? Isn't the shared experience of our generation that we were mutually manipulated into that cauldron? And who was responsible, those of us in our twenties or those who were in power? Judge for yourselves. 

      Dr. Henry Kissinger, who operated from the very pinnacle of power during those Indochina Wars, and who defended the establishment throughout, must especially reflect on the responsibilities he carries. I personally would welcome a real dialogue with Dr. Kissinger, which requires a frank admission of the part one played. I personally regret my own part in many decisions the peace movement made, and await an acknowledgement and apology from Dr. Kissinger as well. This conference offers a great opportunity for inner reconciliation. In the absence of that opportunity, I must decline your invitation to the dinner with Dr. Kissinger on April 26.

       

      In gratitude,

      TOM HAYDEN

      Thursday
      Apr212016

      BARBARA LEE RECOGNIZES VIETNAM PEACE MOVEMENT IN HOUSE RESOLUTION

      Rep. Barbara Lee has introduced a House Resolution (H.Res.695) recognizing the Vietnam anti-war movement as, “one of the largest and most prolonged efforts to achieve peace and justice in recent generations and was critical to bringing an end to the war.” Rep. John Conyers became a co-sponsor as an effort begins to seek endorsements from other congressional representatives. 

      The Lee resolution is a direct result of last year’s May 1-2 commemoration of the movement at a conference in Washington DC. 

      The peace resolution will draw the ire of Republicans and reluctance of some Democrats. The Vietnam peace movement is the only Sixties movement that has been marginalized instead of memorialized. Yet it was a life-changing experience for many during the war, including thousands of soldiers and veterans, and the US government has tried to stamp out what they call “the Vietnam Syndrome.”

      The Lee Resolution is an organizing tool for anyone wanting to respond to the Pentagon’s recent false narrative of history on its website. If grass-roots organizers visit, engage and petition their congressional offices, there is a strong chance for reinvigorating the continuing debate over Vietnam. 

      Next site of the debate: April 26-28th in Austin, Texas, the Vietnam War Summit presented by the LBJ Presidential Library, with a keynotes by Henry Kissinger and John Kerry, and panel with Tom Hayden, Marilyn Young, and David Maraniss titled, "The War At Home".

      Also join me May 7 at Skylight Books in LA for my conversation with  this year’s Pulitzer Prize winner for fiction, author Viet Thanh Nguyen while we discuss his new book NOTHING EVER DIES: VIETNAM AND THE MEMORY OF WAR.

      2D SESSION H. RES. ll Recognizing the 50th anniversary of the Vietnam War, 

      114TH CONGRESS

      IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

      Ms. LEE submitted the following resolution; which was referred to the

      Committee on

      RESOLUTION

       Recognizing the 50th anniversary of the Vietnam War,

      Whereas the Vietnam War began on 1964 and ended in 1975;

      Whereas more than 58,000 United States citizens were killed, approximately 10,786 were wounded, and 75,000 veterans left seriously disabled;

      Whereas it is estimated that more than 1,500,000 people from Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia died as a result of the War, and many more were wounded or displaced;

      Whereas thousands of people continue to suffer from the lethal effects of exposure to Agent Orange and unexploded ordnance;

      Whereas the movement to end the Vietnam War was one of the largest and most prolonged efforts to achieve peace and justice in recent generations and was critical to bringing an end to the War;

      Whereas the movement to end the Vietnam War was broad and included students, professors, workers, draft resisters, United States service members and veterans, musicians and artists, candidates for Congress and the presidency, and mobilized a majority in opposition to the Vietnam war

      Whereas the movement generated the largest protests, moratorium actions, and mobilizations in United States history, including a strike of 4,000,000 students from across the Nation following the United States invasion of Cambodia in 1970, multiple acts of protest and resistance on military bases and ships around the world, and the rise of Vietnam Veterans Against the War;

      Whereas United States expenditures on the Vietnam War impacted domestic resources, including for President Lyndon B. Johnson’s War on Poverty;

      Whereas the 1970 blue-ribbon Scranton Report on campus unrest in the United States recognized the growing opposition to the Vietnam War by stating that, ‘‘The crisis on American campuses has no parallel in the history of this nation. This crisis has roots in divisions of American society as deep as any since the Civil War. If this trend continues, if this crisis of understanding endures, the very survival of the nation will be threatened’’;

      Whereas Vietnam peace memorials have been erected at Kent State University in Ohio, the steps of Sproul Hall at the University of California, and the peace memorial adjacent to the RAND Corporation in Santa Monica, California;

      And Whereas peace and reconciliation research programs were widely incorporated in high school and university classrooms after the Vietnam War era: Now, therefore, be it

      Resolved, That the House of Representatives—

      (1) Commemorates the 50th anniversary of the Vietnam War;

      (2) Recognizes that the movement to end the Vietnam War was one of the largest and most prolonged efforts to achieve peace and justice in recent generations and was critical to bringing an end to the War;

      (3) Acknowledges the role of those who participated in public protests, teach-ins, and opposition to the War, and the many people who supported political candidates of both parties who sought to end the War;

      (4) Applauds the establishment of educational programs at colleges and universities across the United States that are focused on conflict transformation and peace building; and

      (5) Urges continued efforts during this 50th anniversary period to reflect on the lessons learned from the Vietnam War and to recommit to sustained diplomacy that prevents conflict.

      Monday
      Apr182016

      I have long avoided the vipers who infect our internet, the latest being those trying to defame and intimidate anyone who questions Bernie's campaign. I don’t mean the large numbers of Bernie supporters who are working hard and constructively, but it getting so bad that Bernie himself has had to apologize for Paul Song’s attack on “corporate Democratic whores". The story is spreading into the national news and hurting Bernie’s campaign. See the LA Times' piece from April 15, for example.
      To balance the situation a bit, here are only some of the messages I've received over the past 2 days.
      This is a terrific piece Tom.  Very thoughtful, balanced, well informed, wide-ranging on issues that matter.  Your discussion of the Port Huron history and "part of the way with LBJ" is fascinating and directly relevant -- your efforts at that time not to demonize liberals, as is too often the case when the left attacks itself or its allies for not being on the same tactical page.  Your central.point about uniting rather than factionalizing is exactly right, and anyone who forgets that -- refusing to vote for the Democratic Party winner -- should be ashamed of themselves given the intoletable alternative on the other side in the general, whether it's trump, cruz, ryan, or any other.on the Republican list of nuts.
      I was disappointed in how superficial Bernie's discussion of climate change was in last night's Brooklyn debate.  He seemed not to have any understanding of how important the Clean Power Plan is or the Paris Agreement, and how hard that progress has been to achieve.  Maybe that's just politics, but it makes him seem uninformed, and I worry he's less substantive than I had thought.  He's always voted the right way on the environment, so I'm not too worried. And he is dead right on the economic issues. But his gun stance makes no sense, even if long ago he  opposed assault weapons.
      Anyway, thanks fot the excellent piece.  I'm going to send it around.
      All the best,
      Joel
      -

      I agree completely with your piece on Bernie and Hillary. I support Bernie, but some of his ideas would be hard to implement given Republican intransigence in Congress. Hillary may be the only answer. Ted

      -

      Thought-provoking and compelling as always, Tom.  I'm sure going to have to look at things hard between now and June. 

      Best, Tom 

      -

      Thoughtful, informed, wise, and brave. You will be attacked, but that's nothing new for you. Thank you very for this contribution.

      Sincerely, Jim

      -

      Tom:  This is a great piece that I think will have an important impact.  Thanks so much for your clear thinking and consistent values.  Vivian Rothstein

      -

      Thanks Tom.  I agree and hope your words carry their usual weight with your many readers.  All the best. Ruth

      -

      Thank you thank you thank you!!

      We live in Topanga, and have met you several times...in fact you were at our home after the fund raiser we produced for IRC at the Theatricum a few years ago...up on Observation Drive overlooking the state park...I believe that Ron Kovic was at that gathering as well.

      It's been difficult to have a dialogue with the Bernie supporters in the Canyon...they just become angry, say I want the "status quo" and that they will "never" vote for Secretary Clinton.  These are also individuals who've never read her books or understand her personal/political history. 

      I'm hopeful that your thoughtful and informative treatise might persuade some persons to rethink what seems to be a kind of political rigidity, and work toward getting a Democrat elected, even if it isn't Senator Sanders... Hillary is, after all is said and done, the most viable candidate... and yes, "back in the day" I, like many of my friends, voted for McGovern....now we're more pragmatic...

      I will post your message on my FB and send it to other friends as well...

      With best wishes, and gratitude for your lifetime of hard work..

      Susan & John 

      -

      Tom

      Your article in The Nation (which I just received from you) is a wonderful piece and very important for many people to see.  I have sent it to family members and friends, especially those living in California and NY.  I have struggled with both Bernie and Hillary and have come out where you are.  Your analysis and your clear statement about your life's work are a very powerful statement.  Thanks.

      I noticed in the article that you stated you had a significant stroke.  How are you doing?

      Hope al is well.  And again, thanks for your great piece.

      Al

      -

      Dear Tom (I hope this gets to you), 

      I read your article in The Nation about you switching from Sanders to Clinton, and the reasons behind it. I couldn’t agree more.

      I consider myself as liberal/progressive as anyone – having spent a year in jail in the 60s for my opposition to the Vietnam War, and continuing to support a more just and rational society though political participation in the Democratic Party.

      But, unlike many on the left, I feel I recognize the limitations of our political process that is built into the system. I’ve exchanged emails with Noam Chomsky about this, during the Ralph Nader runs – a hopeless and destructive effort that only resulted in electing Bush (twice).

      I’ve tried to encourage those who feel the two political parties to be the same to wake up and look at the real results of policies and the effects on the majority of Americans. As Chomsky says in his film, Manufacturing Consent, the two parties represent a small but powerful slice of the possible political spectrum – with the common goal of perpetuating their grip on power. BUT, there is a difference that is quite real, that has a real impact on the poor, disenfranchised, and powerless.

      Chomsky encouraged his followers to vote for Gore (and then Kerry) instead of Nader, in states where it was close. It’s fine to make a point with your vote, but it shouldn’t be a suicide mission. From my point of view Nader, and now Bernie, would not make a good president, for all the reasons you list – they would have to work with Republicans and moderate Democrats in Congress to actually get anything done. A hopeless expectation, in my opinion.

      I wish Bernie’s supporters would take all their energy and actually get involved with the Democratic Party, at the local, county, and state levels. Only then can there be real change within the party. It won’t happen by an outsider kicking in the door. For years I was a board member of our local Dem Party organization – President and VP during the 2008 and 2012 elections.

      The Tea Party actually showed the way to do it. They didn’t like the Republican Party, so they got involved at all levels and took it to a new (and horrific) direction. I saw up close here in San Diego County how they had organized to run for school boards, judgeships, county supervisors, and got some of the worst elected to the House (Duncan Hunter, Darrell Issa, etc.), even though Dems outnumber Reps here. They are just more determined and disciplined.

      I feel like the message has to be: Liberals – grow up and get involved; don’t just complain every 4 years. Do the real work of democracy from within the Party.

      Thank you for all your efforts for the various causes.

      Best,

      Jon

      -

      Thank you Tom for sharing your insights and analysis.  I personally feel pulled in both directions, intellectually and emotionally.  I can only say that I hope we can unify the democratic forces needed to defeat the Republicans following the convention.  I will have no problem supporting the Democratic nominee.

      Again and always, thank you so much for your lifetime of dedication, thoughtful analysis, strategic proposals, organizing and persistent hard work to creating a more democratic and just world.

      Sincerely and respectfully,

      Dan

      -

      Thank you, Tom.

      This is the most articulate, thoughtful piece I've seen so far from someone on "the left" outlining their decision making process. 

      Much appreciated,

      Diane

      -

      Thank you, Tom.

      Well thought out, all the way through.

      Garry

      -

      Thanks for sending me your periodic postings which I always enjoy, but thanks especially for your most recent mailing in which you carefully and succinctly explain your shift in support from Bernie to Hillary. 

      You’ve really helped to clarify my stance in regard to each of them, and while I continue to have deep respect for Bernie’s positions, perspectives and proposed policies (how’s that for alliteration?) I am deeply appreciative of your words that have helped me to reconsider and shift my support from Bernie to Hillary.

      Even as I write this I feel a sense of betrayal to Bernie who has long been a hero of mine since long before the current electoral cycle. Yet your points are compelling, so much so that I find that I can no longer  go with Bernie, for many of the reasons that you stated. I also see that there are, ironically some similarities between Bernie and Trump, not in their values or the content of their positions, but in their failure (much moreso on Trump’s part than Bernie’s) to provide adequate, realistic, and practical details in regard to the enactment of their proposed changes that they claim to have the means to make. Your essay illuminates many of the concerns that I have had but haven’t clearly recognized within myself, until I read your words.

      Thank you for the thought and time that you put into sending out this very important message. I intend to pass on to my friends who I think will similarly benefit to your enlightening words.

      And thanks also for the good work that tho continue to do. We need it now more than ever!

      In peace,

      Charlie

      -

      Tom,

      Eloquent, powerful, beautiful as always. I'll share widely as possible your perfect statement at this crucial moment.

      Alan

      Well thought out.

      Your guidance, I find, is indispensable for my own direction.

      Roger

      Much as I hate to admit it, Tom is right as usual. Very worth reading. - Jerry

      -

      Tom -- Can't quite believe I'm saying this, but good for you.  To take this stand at this time takes guts and it's clear it didn't come easily. 

      Thanks for being the grown-up in the room!

      -

      I feel the same way, Tom.  Point by point.  Extremely well expressed, as always. Celeste

      -

      Thank you so much.  I have supported the Sanders campaign financially, but have also decided to vote for Clinton.  Your thoughtful piece anchors my decision. Carolyn

      -

      Thank you. Great piece. Am sharing widely.

      Monday
      Mar282016

      Bernie’s Long Shot Campaign Strategy

      Bernie’s Continental Army (what else to call it?) is readying to throw itself into a vital string of primaries from Wisconsin (April 5) to the Wyoming caucus (April 9) all the way to New York (April 19) and finally California (June 7). They tend to win "whiter" primaries and caucuses where grass-roots organizers dominate. If Bernie splits those big and diverse states with Hillary, she will still add important delegates to her total of 280 pledged delegates and 440 additional super-delegates. That gives her a 300+ delegate edge on the quest for 2,382. 

      Click to read more ...