Monday, September 11, 2017

The Continuing Horror of 9/11

Sixteen years later, and tragically, the horrific legacy of 9/11 lives on.

Manhattan is my home town. My Mom, like her own Mom, had been born in Manhattan.  My Dad (the the Irish-American Brooklynite) worked on Maiden Lane, in lower Manhattan. He had been retired for many years at the time of 9/11, and I had left even more years ago.  At the time of the 9/11 attack, I was living in the Hudson Valley, with friends & neighbors working in Manhattan, including possibly my own husband, working as courier driver.  Eventually I found out that no one close to me had died in the attack, but the brother of an acquaintance (the brother had been a Manhattan chef) was killed, and the young adult son of a lovely, typically cheerful friend of mine, on his way to visit his fiancee across the country, was on board one of the planes that hit the towers.

People caught in the attack, NYC Transit workers, police, firefighters, EMT and other emergency personnel, exerted heroic efforts to prevent further deaths and to otherwise respond to the tragedy. As a native of NYC, I certainly was not at all surprised to hear of the various stories of sudden heroism by ordinary New Yorkers, who typically rise to such occasions with down-to-earth decency, humble and amazing courage, and competence.  Many of these have had their lives impeded and shortened by harm to their health, from the asbestos and toxins they breathed in, from the lack of protective equipment, and from our nation's unique failure to provide adequate healthcare to all but the wealthy and the electeds.

And, I am proud to say, like so many of my fellow New Yorkers, including those who lost loved ones in the attack, the very last thing I wanted to have happen after 9/11 was for more civilians to be violently attacked and killed.  The last thing we wanted to have happen is for normal humans doing normal activities - people caring for their babies, caring for each other, caring for their pets, going to their jobs, taking their kids to school, growing crops (and flowers), creating art, healing the sick, making music, pursuing scientific enquiry, falling in love- the last thing we wanted after that hellish day, was to have some Americans choose to continue the work of the devil, and go around bombing people, who are just trying to live their lives in their own communities. 

However, the very thing we most abhor, the killing of other humans, just trying to live their own human lives, was what those Americans with the most decision-making power chose to do.  After arranging for Bin Laden's family in the U.S to be flown safely out of the US without questioning right after 9/11, W. Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, and Rice, chose to violently kill, maim, torture Afghanis and Iraqis.  Had the governments of Afghanistan or Iraq declared war on us or even attacked us? No, they had not.  Which country, besides possibly our own, was most responsible, for 9/11?  Our dear friend, Saudi Arabia, to whom we give billions of US tax money for their weapons of terrorism - W. Bush, Obama, Trump...one thing these presidents all have in common is that.

Many self-identified liberals and progressives opposed the invasion of Iraq during the W. Bush years, but then supported the US war on the Middle East during the Obama years.  According to well-respected human rights institutions such as Amnesty International, Reprieve, and Human Rights Watch, US military violence in the Middle East has killed hundreds of thousands of civilians, displaced millions, and under Obama, sneak drone murders of civilians in several countries has increased about tenfold compared to W., resulting in thousands of civilians being murdered, and Trump continues the dronings.  I use the word "murders" advisedly - bombing people with drones operated across the world, and then bombing the first-responders who come to render aid to the victims, is officially a crime according to international courts of justice, as well to anyone with the least exacting of moral compasses.

US presidents have much decision-making power, but it takes the many to empower their decisions. So many ways to enable US military terrorism.  Even though US wars and other military actions have been unjust and often illegal according to international standards, join the military or the National Guard, encourage young people to do so, and thank military members for their service (to Commanders-in-Chief with track records of violently sociopathic policy decisions). Repeat the malarkey that the US military defends our freedoms (no, we do not have the freedom to kill people in other countries.  Are they invading us? No, we are invading them.  Are they threatening our Bill of Rights? No, we are doing that to ourselves, with, for example, the "Patriot" Acts, NSA, and Border Patrol allowed to do whatever they want to whomever they want, whenever). Repeat the malarkey that US military are all heroes.  Keep silent when others mouth the malarkey.  Never speak up about the blatant immorality of US declared and undeclared wars and the drone murders. Never join or support a peace group. Call violence "patriotic" and call failure to support mass murder "unpatriotic," call those who try to protect their communities against US military violence "insurgents" like that's a bad thing (hey, remember 1776 - who were the insurgents then?).  And when you hear others speak this way, be sure to remain silent. Never write a letter to the editor against US military decisions, never contact your electeds to protest US military actions.  Because fact is, those who can decide to initiate violent militaristic activities, would be utterly helpless to enact them, if it weren't for all the myriad enablers making all those atrocities possible.  

Special acknowledgement to all who remain silent about all that- the ongoing hellish legacy of 9/11 would be impossible without you.

So, about three thousand people killed on 9/11/01, and since then, via military actions, the US has killed or otherwise adversely impacted well over a million people, who had, incidentally, nothing to do with 9/11.  To those who did have something to do with 9/11, we continue to give heaps of our tax money and weapons.  Can we stop yet?  Can we stop the hellish legacy of 9/11?  

A reminder - in sharp contrast to the Democratic Party, as well as to the Republican Party, the Green Party accepts no corporate (think arms and drone manufacturers) funding, and the official political platform of the Green Party clearly supports peace.  Thou shalt not kill.  Is this really such a hard directive to follow? What will you do?

Barbara Kidney
HVGP Co-Chair 

Saturday, September 2, 2017

The Green table in Beacon


Lots of people stopped to talk. "How do we get out of
the two party, corporate controlled system?

Sunday, August 6, 2017

Corn Festival

We will be at the Clearwater Corn Festival at Pete Seeger Park in Beacon on Aug 13th from noon-5.

Please come visit us. We will be handing out flyers promoting the New York Health Act., which is plan for New York to go single payer.

Saturday, July 22, 2017

Picnic Today! Sat. July 22 - 3:30 - 6:30

As the weather forecast is for a somewhat cloudy but non-rainy afternoon, it does appear that our plans to picnic today are on!  Please see our July 8 post for details regarding this event.  Any last minute issues, contact Andrew at 845 699 3051. Look for our "Hudson Valley Green Party" sign, at the Highland side of the Walkway Over the Hudson.  See ya!

Sunday, July 9, 2017

Cuomo Pushes New Toxic Fuels in Hudson Valley...and Beyond



Despite NYS's official energy policy, which calls for 50% of state energy needs being supplied by renewable sources by 2030, Gov. Cuomo- Democratic, Working Families Party Gov. Cuomo- continues to back the construction of the CPV (Competitive Power Ventures) fracked gas power plant on County Route 6 in the Town of Wawayanda, near Slate Hill, in Orange County.





Photo shows protestors at CPV site after Apr. 21 trial of "Wawyanda 6." Speaking is local resident Maddy Shaw. Fellow Wawayanda 6 members pictured are (right to left) actor and HVGP member James Cromwell, social work professor Naomi Miller (glasses), and Protect Orange County leader Pramilla Malick (orange shirt) - photo (copyright) by Barbara Kidney.


If operative, as planned by CPV and the Democratic and WF Party Governor, this plant would increase greenhouse gas emissions of electricity generators by 10% - for the entire state!  It would necessitate the operation of 150 frack wells PER DAY and emit 130 million cubic feet of greenhouse gasses PER DAY along with carcinogenic and neurotoxic particulate matter to land wherever, including on the valuable Black Dirt farmland in nearby Pine Island and on the gardens and schoolyards of the neighboring residential community.     

CPV would be the largest power plant in NYS.  Toxic fracked materials would travel hundreds of miles by pipelines leaking at a rate of 10% as a conservative estimate, from their source in the fracklands of PA to just outside congested Middletown, NY.  Additionally, enormous tanks of ammonia and diesel fuel are, and would continue to be, placed close to ever-busy highway I-84.  What could possibly go wrong?!

These and other interesting facts were given in sworn testimony by expert witnesses including Dr. Tony Ingraffea, geo-engineering professor emeritus of Cornell University, and Dr. Robert Howarth,  professor of ecology and environmental sciences, also at Cornell, on April 21, at the Town of Wawayanda Court trial of the so-called Wawayanda 6, who were represented by civil rights attorney Michael Sussman.  Back on Dec. 18, 2015, six members of a large group of anti-CPV protestors chained themselves in front of the CPV construction site entrance, and were arrested for trespassing. The defense case rested on the fact the protestors engaged in peaceful civil disobedience in order to prevent significant harm to the community, after having tried in vain to prevent this harm by legal means. (Indeed, sworn testimony included that during Planning Board hearings for the proposed construction of the plant, the Wawayanda Planning Board Chair told residents voicing concerns to "shut up"). 

During this April trial, Assistant Orange County District Attorney Maryellen Albanese made much of the alleged inconvenience to motorists delayed for about half hour on the morning of Dec. 18, 2015 (created not by protestors but by CPV truck-drivers refusing to move onto the highway shoulder), and she totally blew off any and all consequences of the operation of this toxic, already obsolete fracked fuel plant. She even objected to the scientific facts presented by highly credentialled Dr. Ingraffea as "hearsay"!  Once again, taxpayers' money goes to lavishly reimburse ignoramuses and/or pathological liars holding public offices.  Fortunately, presiding Judge Timothy McElduff Jr. overruled Albanese's absurd objections.

On June 7, Judge McElduff issued his decision that the protestors were guilty of a misdemeanor and sentenced each of them to fines and surcharges of $375 and 45 hours of community service. When Attorney Sussman asked the judge to permit the defendants to render the community service by protesting at the CPV site, the packed courtroom erupted into unbridled cheers and applause, and the judge commuted that part of the sentence. Attorney Sussman noted that the judge ruled the protestors were guilty because the extreme harm to the community that they were trying to prevent on Dec. 18, 2015, WAS NOT THEN "IMMINENT" ENOUGH, and, as much time has since passed and construction continues, we can draw our own conclusions.  HEY, JUDGE, IS HARM IMMINENT ENOUGH YET?!

Three of the Wawayanda 6, HVGP member James Cromwell, along with Maddy Shaw, and Pramilla Malick, have refused to pay the fine, and are due to be imprisoned on Friday July 14 in Orange County Jail for a week.  A rally and press conference are scheduled at the CPV site on Route 6 in Wawayanda at 2 pm Friday July 14, followed by a motor caravan to accompany James, Maddy, and Pramilla to the county jail- come join this if you can!

Meanwhile, there is the matter of CPV needing DEC (NYS Dept. of Environmental Conservation) to issue a permit to Millennium Pipeline Company for the construction of a 7.8 mile lateral pipeline to bring toxic fracked gas to the CPV plant. This new pipeline would run through Deerpark, Greenville, and Minisink, in Sullivan and Orange Counties. So...

EXTREMELY URGENT!!  Here's what we must do!  Let us overwhelm DEC with comments against the construction of this inevitably leaky pipeline of toxic fracked substances. Public hearings will be held 6 pm Thurs., July 27 at Monticello High School in Monticello, and 6 pm Wed., August 2 at Paramount Theater, 17 South St., in downtown Middletown. Written comments should be submitted by 5 pm Friday August 4 to the DEC website http://www.dec.ny.gov/permits/110485.html.  IF CPV CANNOT GET THAT PIPELINE,  the CPV monster will be slain!

But wait, there's more!  Before he was fired by Donald Trump, federal attorney Preet Bharara was investigating corruption involving top Cuomo aide Joseph Percoco  and CPV lobbyist Peter Galbraith Kelly, Jr.  Percocco's wife, Lisa Toscano-Percoco received more than $287,000 from CPV for a do-nothing job position with CPV, in exchange for Percoco's help in obtaining a state contract worth about $100 million to finance CPV, as well as millions of dollars in energy credits for another new toxic power plant in New Jersey (NYTimes, Weiser, Rashbaum, & Yee, Sept. 22, 2016). 

So,  Gov. Cuomo (Dem/WF) out-Trumps Trump when it comes to actual climate and environmental damage in NYS as well as in northern New Jersey (air pollution, greenhouse gasses) and Pennsylvania (ditto, plus 150 frack wells operating, and pipelines leaking).  Call Cuomo anytime and leave him a voicemail telling him this, at 518 474 8390.  You do not have to leave your name, and it would be an excellent idea to contact him repeatedly about this issue. Remember, CPV and its lateral pipeline violate both the Paris Climate Accord AND the NYS Sustainable Energy Plan.  And besides Cuomo, fellow Dems, Congressperson Sean Patrick Maloney and State Assembyperson James Skoufis, also support CPV and its own new dirty little pipeline.

And to think we could have had Howie Hawkins for NYS Governor.  Get real, people- when you have the choice, eschew both Red and Blue plutocrats and vote Green!

--Verde Claro 





Saturday, July 8, 2017

Picnic with Us! Sat. July 22 - 3:30 to 6:30ish - Walkway Over the Hudson

     HVGP will have a picnic gathering on the Highland ("West Bank") side of Walkway Over the Hudson Park, weather permitting, on Sat. afternoon, July 22, 3:30 - 6:30 pm. 
This will be an informal social event, certainly open to family and friends, regardless of political party registration.  There will probably be political conversation, however- be forewarned : )  Please bring your own food, drink, and picnic accessories; bring food or drink to share if you would like.  Earth and human friendly food and drink are encouraged; what you consume is your choice, of course, but please be kind to your neighbors and avoid GMOs, pesticided, and high-fructose items  for sharing.
     The park has a carry-in, carry-out policy, which means you are responsible for taking your trash out with you and properly disposing off-site.  As we are Greens, let's picnic Green with no or minimalistic plastic, and recycle what cannot be re-used.  It's a simple matter to bring your own plate, cup, silverware, and (ideally) cloth napkin. 
     Rain date is Sunday, July 23, same time, with next rain date being Sat. July 29, same time.
     
     Activities at this park include walking, jogging, and biking.  Skate-boarding is not allowed.  Leashed pets are permitted.  Restrooms and concession stands are present.  For more particulars, check the Walkway Over the Hudson website.  There are picnic tables but we cannot count on having one, so bring a blanket or chairs.  Feel free to bring your musical instrument; for those who like we can do some singing, and acoustic instrumental music is also welcome.  If you plan to walk on the walkway, prepare for somewhat cooler and breezier conditions.

      On Sat. July 22 at 6:30 pm, the park will be offering an outdoor showing of the movie, "Rogue One: A Star Wars Movie" on the Poughkeepsie ("East Bank") side of the Walkway - something to look forward to after our picnic, if weather allows us our first choice of date.

       If we have to postpone due to weather, we will post that on this site, assuming we have power.  (In these days of 400 plus ppm carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, weather "events" are common, no?)  Feel free to phone or text Andrew at 845 699 3051 for any last-minute issues or questions.

     

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Initial Organizational Meeting - June 6, 2017

    Our first formal organizational meeting on June 6 was a success!  Fifteen Green Party members met in Beacon and agreed to seek recognition for our group, Hudson Valley Green Party (HVGP),  from the Green Party of New York State (GPNY).  GP members from three counties- Dutchess, Orange, and Ulster- attended, as well as a GP member from Connecticut.  We adopted bylaws and elected a slate of officers.  Michael O'Neil, administrator for GPNY, attended, helped with administrative issues, and spoke about GPNY's political directions for the coming year, most notably working for a single payer health system in NYS (which obtained some support in the NYS Legislature, by being passed by the NYS Assembly as the NY Health Act, prior to the NYS Legislature recessing for the summer).

    Volunteering as officeholders for two year terms are:  Barbara Kidney and Susy Nowak, Co-Chairs; Joe Calabro and Dave Heller, Co-Secretaries; Andrew Dalton, Treasurer.  All received unanimous support.

    Minutes will be submitted to GPNY's Executive Committee (EC) with a request for state party recognition of HVGP as an official local chapter of GPNY.  Receiving this status would enable HVGP to have official representation and voting rights within GPNY.  The next formal meeting of GPNY occurs in mid-September; we expect a decision from the state EC after that meeting.

    All registered Green Party members in Dutchess, Orange, or Ulster counties would be de facto members of HVGP.  Also welcome to join would be people in those counties who self-identify with Green Party values but who are denied voting rights due to immigration status (including Permanent Residents ("green card" holders)) or legal status.  Green Party members or aficionados from outside Dutchess, Orange, and Ulster are also welcome to attend our meetings and to otherwise be in touch with us.

    HVGP will hold its next formal meeting in late September or in October; check this site for further information later.  Meanwhile, we plan to picnic at the Highland side of Walkway Over the Hudson on Saturday, July 22 from 3:30 to 6:30, weather permitting, with rain date of Sunday, July 23, same time.  More on this on an upcoming posting.

 

          --Submitted by Barbara Kidney

        





Friday, June 30, 2017

Hudson Valley Green Party: Hudson Valley Green Party: Hudson Valley Green Par...

Hudson Valley Green Party: Hudson Valley Green Party: Hudson Valley Green Par...: Hudson Valley Green Party: Hudson Valley Green Party: Hudson Valley Green Par... : PLEASE BE ADVISED:  DO NOT SIGN OPPORTUNITY TO BALLOT FORMS FOR DEMOCRATS OR REPUBLICANS TO GET ON THE GREEN LINE. THE GREEN PARTY IS A NON CORPORATE PARTY AND THIS IS A LEGAL WAY FOR CORPORATE CANDIDATES TO GET ON OUR BALLOT LINE.

Hudson Valley Green Party: Hudson Valley Green Party: Hudson Valley Green Par...

Hudson Valley Green Party: Hudson Valley Green Party: Hudson Valley Green Par...

Hudson Valley Green Party: Hudson Valley Green Party: Hudson Valley Green Par...

Hudson Valley Green Party: Hudson Valley Green Party: Hudson Valley Green Par...: PLEASE BE ADVISED:  DO NOT SIGN OPPORTUNITY TO BALLOT FORMS FOR DEMOCRATS OR REPUBLICANS TO GET ON THE GREEN LINE.  THE GREEN PARTY IS A NO...

Hudson Valley Green Party: Hudson Valley Green Party: Hudson Valley Green Par...

Hudson Valley Green Party: Hudson Valley Green Party: Hudson Valley Green Par...: PLEASE BE ADVISED:  DO NOT SIGN OPPORTUNITY TO BALLOT FORMS FOR DEMOCRATS OR REPUBLICANS TO GET ON THE GREEN LINE.  THE GREEN PARTY IS A NO...

Hudson Valley Green Party: Hudson Valley Green Party: June 6 Green Party meet...

PLEASE BE ADVISED:  DO: NOT SIGN OPPORTUNITY TO BALLOT FORMS FOR DEMOCRATS OR REPUBLICANS TO GET ON THE GREEN LINE.  THE GREEN PARTY IS A NON CORPORATE PARTY AND THIS IS A LEGAL WAY THAT CORPORATE FUNDED CANDIDATES CAN TAKE OUR BALLOT LINE.

Sunday, June 25, 2017

Hudson Valley Green Party: June 6 Green Party meeting in Beacon

Hudson Valley Green Party: June 6 Green Party meeting in Beacon: We will be having an organizing meeting for the Hudson Valley Green Party at St Roccos 26 South Chestnut Street in Beacon on June 6 be...





Thanks  to all who attended the June 6 meeting. We will be having a picnic toward the end of July.

details to follow soon.

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

June 6 Green Party meeting in Beacon

We will be having an organizing meeting for the Hudson Valley Green Party at St Roccos 26 South Chestnut Street in Beacon on June 6 between 7-9 pm.

All registered Greens residing in Dutchess, Ulster, Putnam Orange and Weschester are invited. The purpose of the meeting will be organizational such as hopefully passing bylaws and electing officers. If you think you might be interested in attending please RSVP with me Joe Calabro at curmudgeonhp@yahoo.com

Joe Calabro

Sunday, April 2, 2017

Ajamu Baraka at Bard College


Wed, Apr 12, 7pm in the Chapel at Bard College (Centre of campus in Annandale, NY).


Ajamu Baraka will present a talk on "Malcolm X and Human Rights in the Time of Trumpism: Transcending the Master’s Tools." He will also talk about the emerging strength of the Green Party.

Thursday, March 2, 2017

We will have change despite the corporate parties

Don't blame Trump voters. Of course, some were motivated by Trump's obvious appeals to racists and white nationalists. But many had voted for Obama when he promised to change the rigged system, and again for Sanders when he vowed to do the same. Most Trump voters just wanted to smash an economic system that only benefited the richest Americans.

Blame the billionaire funded Democratic Party, that couldn't offer an alternative during its last sixteen years in the White House. Hillary, backed by the major corporations and Wall Street, would have been more of the same.

Blame many of the nation's unions, so corrupted that their leaders have long ago given up on strengthening the working class. Now unions are pockets of protectionism that are resented by most blue caller workers.

Blame many of the college professors and the nation's intellectual class, so comfortable with their salaries and fearful of change that they support the kleptocracy.

Blame much of the nation's media, that always reflects the views of the privileged few. Hillary was the media's first pick, and then came Trump. Bernie's revolution was simply never covered at all.

Trump will destroy what is left of the public good, draining the treasury to make billionaires even richer. Health, housing, decent wages and unions will all give way to a permanent police state.

People are finally taking to the streets. This time we won't let a morally bankrupt Democratic Party steal our momentum. We will have change despite the corporate controlled parties.

Fred Nagel

Only half of the nightmare

Some write about the nightmare of the Trump presidency, and the dream of the Sanders presidency that might have been. Let us all keep clearly in mind whom we have to thank for the actual nightmare and the failed dream. Major responsibility goes to the Democratic Party, the place where all good political ideas go to die (and the Working Families Party, which is like unto it. Heck, maybe even worse- WF picked Cuomo when the Dems were still considering Teachout). More specifically, for the current nightmare and dead dream we can thank Hillary Clinton, & Deb Wasserman Schultz, & major Dems like Warren and Schumer, who did not back Sanders.  

And when the Dem machine crushed the Sanders dream, an even better version of that dream was championed by Stein and the Green Party, but oh no, an impossible option to consider, by so many so-called progressives, in thrall to the Democratic Party (or the WF party, where they can vote for the same candidates, like Hil, Cuomo, & let's-build-CPV-toxic-compressor station Sean Patrick Maloney).

And, if Hillary had been elected, we would still be in a nightmare, just a slightly different one. Rather than the rabid wolf version, we'd have arsenic and old lace. No blatant trampling of civil rights, just subtler but equally deadly environmental racism. And continued military aggression, illegal and immoral undeclared drone wars, fossil & nuclear fuels, Monsanto & GMOs, & Wall St well served by its dear friend. 

And would we have Resist, Insist, Persist? Millions marching in the streets repeatedly, town halls, for social & earth justice? Are you kidding?! Because here's the riddle, children: When are fracking, toxic fuels, plutocratic swindling, military atrocities, persecution of whistleblowers, mass invasions of privacy, ecological devastation via Monsanto, all perfectly fine? When done by Democrats, of course, particularly darkskinned or female ones! What could possibly go wrong?!  

You see, my dears, I'm afraid that the GOP is only half of the nightmare.  

-Barbara Kidney