Saturday, August 25, 2012

Solano PFP endorses "Women's Equality Day", calls for solidarity with Women's Equality Action in in San Francisco!!

We endorse the "Women's Equality Day" in San Francisco, during Aug.26th, and call for solidarity with the commemoration actions conducted by the WORD (Women Organized to Resist and Defend).
We invite everyone to come out, show support and to join us in a Peace and Freedom Party contingent, and to carry our banner!!!
We call everyone to join us in endorsing this action for "Women's Equality Day". You may endorse this action here []
signed, Women's Committee of the Peace and Freedom Party of California
endorsed, Peace and Freedom Party of Solano County
and Eugene Ruyle, of the Peace and Freedom Party of Alameda County

2012-08-26 "On Women's Equality Day Women in Bay Area Ask: Just How Far Have We Come?" 
In 1971 Bella Abzug introduced legislation to establish Women's Equality Day to be celebrated each year on August 26th. Ever since the creation of this national day of commemoration of women's right to vote, women have paused to ask, "just how far have we come since the 19th amendment passed?" In the Bay Area women will address this question at gatherings in the cities of San Francisco and San Mateo.
Despite the fact that an amendment for women's right to vote was first introduced in the US in 1878, that right was not granted until August 26, 1920 when the 19th Amendment to the United States Constitution was signed. Women's Equality Day celebrates the establishment of this basic right each year.
 Members of the national organization Radical Women put out a call on the occasion of Women's Equality Day this year saying, "It's time to reclaim and re-energize a fighting, militant feminist movement!" They are calling for a multiracial grassroots feminism with a radical program. Radical Women's San Francisco chapter will gather in commemoration of the day this year with the theme "Immigrant Women Battle for a Better World".
 San Francisco peninsula based congresswomen Jackie Speier and Anna Eshoo are very vocal on issues of concern to women. People in San Mateo County and beyond applauded the two US Representatives when they both demanded an investigation in 2007 of the actions of County Sheriff Gregg Munks. The Sheriff and another male Sheriff's Department employee were detained at a Las Vegas brothel while there for a law enforcement relay race. As much of $10,000 in public funds were used to plan and take that Vegas trip. The two congressional representatives are staunch supporters of women's rights to reproductive freedom and job equality. In addition, Representative Speier seeks to keep Big Pharma from influencing medical care that negatively impacts women.
 In San Mateo, women will join Representative Jackie Speier at an event she will co-sponsor with Eshoo at the San Mateo History Museum. Visit the indybay calendar for the San Mateo event of August 26 and the San Francisco Radical Women event of August 28.

 Event announcements:
 August 26 in San Mateo []
 August 28 in San Francisco []

2012-08-26 "Women's Equality Day" in San Francisco -
 On Sunday, August 26th, National Women's Equality Day, WORD (Women Organized to Resist and Defend) San Francisco is calling for a mass protest in the Mission to defend women's rights. We want to let the politicians of both major parties know that we will not stand by while women's rights are under attack.
 The August 26th demonstration was initiated by WORD, a new grassroots, feminist organization that is dedicated to building the struggle for women’s rights and equality for all.
 Get involved in the struggle to defend women's rights! Volunteers from all over Northern California are working hard to build the August 26th demonstration for women's rights, but there is still time to get involved. Come, bring friends and join this important movement!
[415-375-9502] []
Text of the WORD statement upholding "Women's Equality Day" -
August 26th Day of Action – Women’s Equality Day []:
On Women’s Equality Day, August 26 – on the eve of the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Florida, which will be immediately followed by the Democratic National Convention - women and their allies will take to the streets of Los Angeles, San Francisco, New York City, Chicago and other cities across the country in defense of women's rights.
August 26th - Women’s Equality Day - commemorates the 1920 passage of the 19th amendment, giving women the right to vote. Winning the right to vote was an important victory, but the struggle for full equality continues. Celebrate Women’s Equality Day by taking to the streets and demanding full equality now. Honor the women who fought for the rights we’ve won and continue the struggle for full equality.
Many women voted for President Obama believing he would stand up for women’s rights. But he has compromised with the anti-choice forces on many occasions. When Republicans opposed a 2009 provision for family planning, he dropped it. In 2011, the White House took the unprecedented step of overruling the FDA in order to keep Plan B out of the reach of women under 18. While President Obama is not a right-wing pro-lifer, we cannot count on him or any politician to defend our rights. In fact, in order to reach a budget compromise with Republican Speaker of the House John Boehner in July 2011, President Obama said, "I'll give you abortion in D.C." Meaning, low-income women in the District of Columbia would be prevented from receiving Medicaid assistance offered by the D.C. government for abortion procedures.
Women’s reproductive rights continue to be slashed at the state level. Legal restrictions on abortions tripled from 2010 to 2011. 92 new abortion restrictions were enacted in 2011. In 2011, there were 114 reported violent attacks against abortion providers. Clinics that provide vital services for millions of working-class women are under siege. More than 55 percent of reproductive age women now live in states that are “hostile” to abortion rights. (Guttenmacher Institute)
So while they’re convening and concocting new ways to attack our rights and our lives, let’s come together in the streets to stand up and fight back!
There will be mass demonstrations in Los Angeles, San Francisco and other cities around the country. We will mobilize thousands in the streets to show the world that there is a new women’s movement rising and we will not go back.
We believe that access to reproductive choice – the basic right of women to control our own bodies – is a fundamental right and must be defended. We believe in equality. We support working women. We are tired of the right wing trying to turn back the clock and take our hard-won rights away. All people who support equality and choice should organize with us and help these actions grow.
If you can’t make it to protest in Tampa and Charlotte, join or organize a protest in your community. There is a long, proud tradition of women in the United States mobilizing and fighting to win equality and respect. Let’s continue this legacy this summer!

Sisters United Front for Survival []:
Sunday August 26th: March to Rescind Cut to CalWORKS on Women's Rights Day
Date: Sunday August 26th 2012
Time: 12:00 PM - 3:00 PM
Location: March begins at 24th and Mission St., in San Francisco
In the Women's Rights Day Protest, march with Sisters United Front for Survival (SUFS) and lend your voice to the battle to rescind cuts to CalWORKS and all social services.
SUFS is a grassroots campaign of Radical Women. 
Volunteers needed to make pickets signs, phone calls and help with outreach. Call 415-864-1278 or email to volunteer Meet at 24th and Mission Streets in San Francisco. Look for the SUFS banner.

Message from Anne Slater, National Organizer for the Radical Women -
Happy Women's Rights Day!
August 26 marks the anniversary of women in the United States winning the right to vote in 1920.
The campaign for suffrage came directly out of the battle to end slavery and was fought through militant actions in the streets, workplaces and halls of government. Today, the struggle for equality continues against a stepped-up war on women. Elected officials from both parties are shredding social services while our paychecks shrink and jobs disappear. Over the last two years, state legislatures passed 164 anti-immigrant laws, relegating women and men without documents to the precarious informal economy. Last year, 26 states enacted laws restricting reproductive freedom and abortion. Meanwhile, over 40% of families headed by single African American, Latina and Native American mothers live in poverty.

Women respond with bold resistance.
Rank-and-file teachers, predominantly female and of color, are waging vibrant battles against privatized public education and for workers' rights. Young Latinas helped build a powerful Tucson Freedom Summer to defend ethnic studies and immigrant rights.  Feminists defeated anti-choice ballot measures in Mississippi and North Dakota.  Around the nation women took a lead in building Occupy encampments. Radical Women members walked picket lines with locked-out Longshoremen and Teamsters. We defended abortion clinics and fought cuts to social services, welfare and childcare. We demanded taxes on the wealthy and corporate profits.
These sparks of feminist organizing need support and leadership to flame into a national grassroots movement. So my blood boils when I hear statements like the one from National Organization for Women President Terry O'Neill, who wrote, "President Obama represents the pathway to equality."
Pouring women's desire for change into the Democratic Party is a dead-end strategy because the party represents the interests of the 1% just as much as the Republican Party. Both want to maintain the capitalist economic system, which relies on social inequality, wage exploitation, and the free labor of women in the home.
President Obama's policies feed the wealthy and starve the hungry. Fortune 500 companies raked in a record $824 billion in profits in 2011 and the median CEO pay rose to $9.6 million, while workers, mothers and the unemployed struggled with skyrocketing food and gas prices.
Obama's track record on social issues is also revealing. Under his administration more immigrants have been deported than during Bush's time, often separating U.S.-born children from their mothers. War and military occupation get a weekly infusion of  $10.6 billion. The president signed laws that limit protest and allow the military to detain U.S. citizens and foreigners anywhere in the world without charge or trial. He has consistently compromised on reproductive rights and waffled on gay equality.

Enough already! It's time to build a game-changing feminist fightback. One that unites the antiwar, labor, racial equality, immigrant, welfare rights, student and queer movements. One that tackles racism, sexism and homophobia head-on. One that demands a society where wealth is shared, all are sheltered and fed, and quality childcare and education are free.
Connect with political allies to fight the attacks coming down on women by contacting the Radical Women National Office or a chapter near you.

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Free Pussy Riot! (International Solidarity against Tyranny in Russia)

The Solano County Peace and Freedom Party joins the global protest against the Pussy Riot verdict and calls on the Russian authorities to overturn the court ruling and release the members of Pussy Riot immediately and unconditionally. Our Peace and Freedom Party Platform calls for a socialist government that will: “Provide uncensored government funding for ordinary people to create and enjoy art. "

2012-08-03 "Pussy Riot trial 'worse than Soviet era'; Judge refuses to allow 10 defence witnesses as lawyer claims women are being tortured with lack of food and sleep" by Miriam Elder in Moscow for ""
By the end of the first week of Pussy Riot's trial, everyone in the shabby Moscow courthouse was tired. Guards, armed with submachine guns, grabbed journalists and threw them out of the room at will. The judge, perched in front of a shabby Russian flag, refused to look at the defence. And the police dog – a 100lb black Rottweiler – no longer sat in the corner she had occupied since the start of Russia's trial of the year, but barked and foamed at the mouth as if she were in search of blood.
The trial of the three band members, jailed since March after performing a "punk prayer" against Vladimir Putin in Moscow's main cathedral, has been about more than the charges brought against them – formally, hooliganism motivated by religious hatred. In five days of testimony, lawyers and witnesses have laid bare the stark divide that has emerged in Russian society: one deeply conservative and accepting of a state that uses vague laws and bureaucracy to control its citizens, the other liberal bordering on anarchist and beginning to fight against that state with any means it can.
The court is dominated by a glass cage that holds the three women – Maria Alyokhina, who has emerged as their unofficial spokeswoman; Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, whose chiselled features have made her the band's unofficial face; and Yekaterina Samutsevich, who sits in a corner of the cage looking every bit the disgruntled punk.
After five days' sitting in the cage, some days for 10 hours at a time, the women appear exhausted. Violetta Volkova, one of their lawyers, said they were being tortured – denied food and adequate sleep. After a week of being dismissed and lectured by the judge, she could no longer hide her anger. On Friday, as the judge, Marina Syrova, denied yet another defence objection, Volkova began to shout.
Syrova, her glasses forever perched perfectly in the middle of her nose, answered tartly: "You're losing the frames of dignity."
"Those frames long haven't existed here," Volkova replied, seething.
According to Pussy Riot's lawyers, Russia has revived the Soviet-era tradition of the show trial with its case against the group. "Even in Soviet times, in Stalin's times, the courts were more honest than this one," lawyer Nikolai Polozov shouted in court. Outside, during a rare break, he explained: "This is one of the most shameful trials in modern Russia. In Soviet times, at least they followed some sort of procedure."
In one week, Syrova has refused to hear nearly all the objections brought by the defence. One objection claimed that exactly the same spelling errors were found in several witness statements, implying they were falsified.
The prosecution was allowed to call all its witnesses, mainly people who were inside the church at the time of the performance or who had viewed a video of it on YouTube. They answered questions like: "What does your Orthodox faith mean to you?", "Was the women's clothing tight?" and "What offended you about their balaclavas?"
One witness said she heard music during the band's performance in the Cathedral of Christ the Saviour, although footage shown in court showed the women singing with no live instruments. The music was added later to their viral video clip, "Virgin Mary, Chase Putin Out!"
"What kind of music did you hear?" asked the defence. "It wasn't classical – and it wasn't Orthodox," the witness replied.
The defence, meanwhile, tried to call 13 witness, including opposition leader Alexey Navalny and celebrated novelist Lyudmila Ulitskaya. Syrova only allowed them to call three. The prosecution launched the questioning of all its witnesses with the same question: Are you an Orthodox believer? When the defence tried to ask the same question of one of its three witnesses, Syrova shouted: "Question stricken."
The defence knows they are fighting a losing battle in a judicial system that is notoriously politicised. But the media battle remains. Pyotr Verzilov, Tolokonnikova's husband, has spent the trial perched in the seat closest to his wife's cage. He tweets furiously, and constantly checks how often his message is spread.
On Friday, three men climbed on to a ledge across from the courtroom windows, wearing white, purple and green balaclavas and shouted "Freedom to Pussy Riot!". There have been reports of imitation stunts carried out in other cities in Russia.
"At first, after the [anti-Putin] protests started in December, the authorities got scared that they had lost control," Polozov said. "Now they've recovered and have started to react – and the trial against Pussy Riot is the clear first step."
Every day as the trial begins, dozens of journalists gather on the stairs outside the court, repeating a tradition launched with the second trial of Mikhail Khodorkovsky, the oil tycoon and Putin foe, which was held in the same room.
Amid the crush stands Samutsevich's father and Alyokhina's mother, Natalya.
"My daughter and I had very different views about politics," Alyokhina said. "But this trial is bringing them closer."
Putin said this week that the women should not be judged "too harshly". They face up to seven years in jail if convicted but their lawyers took Putin's comments as a signal that they would not receive the full sentence. A verdict is expected next week.

Monday, August 6, 2012

Peace and Freedom Party - California Convention update

Newly elected Peace and Freedom Party officials (two-year terms):
* State Chair, Kevin Akin (Riverside)

Secretary, Dave Campbell (San Francisco)
Treasurer, Sherry Borg (Contra Costa)

Newly elected Peace and Freedom Party officials-at-large:

C.T. Weber (Sacramento)
Richard Becker (San Francisco)* Cassandra Lepe (Yolo)
Cindy Henderson (Los Angeles)
Marsha Feinland (Alameda)
Dave Kadlecek (Santa Clara)
Mary Lou Finley (San Diego)

2012-08-05 "California PFP nominates Barr and Sheehan this afternoon" report from Kevin Akin, Chairperson of the California Peace and Freedom Party:

Wow! What a session!  We went through the whole process, with nominations and seconds and speeches and so on - and at the very end of her 15 minute speech, the last one before the voting began, Peta Lindsay announced that the PSL was withdrawing her name from consideration, because her nomination would likely leave a blank on the California ballot, and the Peace and Freedom Party needs  names on the ballot.  Then she paused, while peoples jaws dropped and there were gasps all over the hall - and announced that they would be voting for Roseanne Barr and Cindy Sheehan, who would be good representatives of the party and fighters for socialism!
The rules had been changed to allow three ballots before eliminating the lowest vote-getter, rather than one ballot. Of course, a majority (of all present and able to vote) for one candidate would end the voting at that point.
First ballot:  Barr 29, Alexander 12, Durham 18, 4 abstentions.  (32 votes required for a majority, we thought.  After the vote, there was a count-off to determine exactly how many delegates were present and able to vote.  There were in fact 64, meaning that the required majority was 33.)
(The several people who had told me they intended to vote for Rocky Anderson before he withdrew, voted in the first round instead either for Roseanne Barr or Stewart Alexander.)
Second ballot:  Barr 37, Alexander 6, Durham 16,  5 abstentions.  Barr was declared nominated.
Several people who had voted for Alexander or Durham recognized that Barr was going to be nominated, and switched their votes even though no one had yet been formally dropped, ending the process before it could become too wearing.
While both Cindy Sheehan and Christina Lopez  were nominated from the floor for VP, Lopez declined (because she is Durhams's running mate nationally), and Cindy was nominated for Vice President with all in favor except 13 abstentions (mainly from FSP).  So it's official - Roseanne Barr and Cindy Sheehan are the Peace and Freedom Party ticket.

Richard Becker, of the PSL, writes:
The idea that the PSL sees the FSP as its "arch rival organization" is imaginary and has no basis in reality.
The PSL is not running against Roseanne Barr and Cindy Sheehan, nor any of the other socialist or progressive candidates for that matter. We are running against the capitalist system and its candidates. We have expended a great deal of time, energy and resources in getting on the ballot in what we hope will be 13-14 states in order to expose the capitalist/imperialist system and bring the message of socialism to hundreds of thousands or millions of people who we cannot reach in another way at this time. We are not competing with the Barr/Sheehan campaign for votes. We see our campaigns as complementary -- more voices raising the need for socialism -- not competitive.
The PSL voted for the Barr/Sheehan slate for exactly the reason that Peta Lindsay stated in her speech at the convention, part of which follows:  "We are highly aware of the threat posed to the continuing existence of Peace and Freedom Party – the only openly socialist party with ballot status – by the reactionary and deceptive Prop 14. It is especially important that the party have as energetic and visible a 2012 campaign as possible, one which can hopefully register tens of thousands of new PFP voters. If I were to win the nomination here today, but not win the court fight, that could lead to the PFP presidential ballot line being blank. We do not want to see that happen.
"So, I am announcing that we are withdrawing from consideration for the Peace and Freedom Party presidential and vice-presidential nominations – while continuing to run an active write-in campaign in California. I want to profoundly thank all the delegates who have supported my candidacy, and urge them, and all the undecided and uncommitted delegates at the convention today, to support the Roseanne Barr/ Cindy Sheehan ticket. Roseanne and Cindy’s campaign is already drawing extensive media attention and they have pledged to carry out a strong, socialist campaign and work to build PFP."

Peace and Freedom in the News: Barr/Sheehen for President

2012-08-15 "Lifting the Veil with Cindy Sheehan" by "LiftingVeils" []
Lifting the Veil is proud to welcome Cindy Sheehan! A prominent anti-war activist and voice for the people, and recently a vice presidential candidate running for office with Roseanne Barr! Coming soon!

"Roseanne Barr on CNN Piers Morgan TV Show Today" message from a Peace and Freedom Party member:
I watched Roseaane Barr interveiw today on CNN Piers Morgan TV show.
The segment began with film from the PFP Convention in LA last week.
Piers Morgan began the discussion with his first sentence introducing Roseanne as the PFP candidate.
This show is watched by millions - and likely the first time many of them ever heard of PFP.
So the visibility issue confirms the decision to have Roseanne be the PFP presidential candidate,
This program is repeated twice again tonight, so people can view the show to see how Roseanne did.
She was clear about stating she was a socialist and saw no difference between the Dems and Repubs.
Piers Morgan again mentioned the PFP name in another part of the interview. 
And he invited her to come back to be on his tv show again in the future.
So - I think it was good - and I hope the people who answer the contacts on the PFP website will report the responses because of this tv show interview today.
I never heard what response was received when Roseanne was on The View TV Show and PFP was mentioned.  I believe more may watch the Piers Morgan Show (that is repeated twice more) than watch The View.  

2012-08-03 "Roseanne Barr takes new run at White House, joins up with Sheehan" by Lee Ross from ""
Not quite ready to give up on her presidential ambitions, comedian Roseanne Barr is joining up with activist Cindy Sheehan for a new run at the White House. 
Fox News has learned that over the past few days Barr asked Sheehan to join her in an attempt to win the little-known Peace and Freedom Party's line on the California ballot.
A party official told Fox News that Barr, who failed in her attempt earlier this year to win the Green Party nomination, has a "fairly high chance" of securing the spot after she again reached out to Peace and Freedom leaders several weeks ago. This was something her campaign explored months ago, but Green Party rules forbid crossover nominees so Barr abandoned that effort.
Now that the Green Party process has played out, Barr renewed her interest with the Peace and Freedom folks and was told she needed a running mate.  Several days ago Cindy Sheehan, a party member who gained notoriety for her opposition to the Iraq war, agreed to join Barr.
Sheehan will speak Friday night on behalf of the ticket at the party's nomination convention. Barr will speak Saturday shortly before party leaders vote on their nominee. 
Barr lost the Green Party nomination but has updated her website,, to reflect the change toward the Peace and Freedom nomination. "She is the lone voice of courage and reason who is unstoppable as she holds corporate-funded politicians feet to the fire," the page declares. In an interview with Fox News earlier this year, Barr talked about the difficulty of running for office.  
This campaigning stuff is really grueling," she said. "If you didn't really believe in what you were doing, I don't know why you'd want to do it, you know."
Since the Peace and Freedom Party doesn't have a national presence the nominee from California is unlikely to appear on most November ballots elsewhere.
According to the party's website, it was founded in 1967 and advocates free education, abortion on demand and "is committed to socialism, democracy, ecology, feminism and racial equality."

2012-08-04 "Article that doesn't quite quote me, despite many tries" report from Kevin Akin, Chairperson of the California Peace and Freedom Party:
Here is the article resulting from my interview by someone from the Daily Caller (out of Washington DC).  It purports to quote me several times, but he got it significantly wrong each time.  A few other facts are off, too.  Everything they quote about other states is slightly different from what I actually said.
I did not, in fact, say that "Barr's nomination looks fairly likely to me at this point."  I said something vaguely similar, but without saying it was fairly likely, just that it was certainly a real possibility.  I carefully phrased everything I said, and I guess he merrily wrote down his vague impressions of what he thought I said, and then cleaned those quotes up a bit so they looked good, without worrying about just how accurate they were.  In other words, perfectly standard media treatment.
I am not going to try to correct him.  Wouldn't it be silly to insist I didn't predict Roseanne's nomination, and then have her get the nomination immediately afterward?  I just figure I should let comrades know what is being said, accurately or not, by another news outlet.  At least they spelled our name right.
2012-08-03 "Roseanne Barr is running for president, again" []
Actress Roseanne Barr announced Thursday that she is seeking the Peace and Freedom Party’s nomination for president, with anti-war activist Cindy Sheehan as her intended running mate.
Barr sought the Green Party’s nomination earlier this year, but lost to Massachusetts physician Jill Stein.
Her renewed candidacy, first reported by the Los Angeles Times, will likely hurt the lesser-known Stein’s footing. Stein’s running mate is also relatively unknown, unlike Sheehan, who became famous for protesting the Iraq War outside President George W. Bush’s Texas ranch.
Kevin Akin, a spokesman and organizer for the Peace and Freedom Party, informed The Daily Caller that the party will make its decision on Saturday.
Barr’s nomination “looks fairly likely to me at this point, but I may be wrong because there are so many people who are uncommitted,” said Akin.
“Thirty people are committed to one person or another and the rest are uncommitted, out of about 85 delegates,” said Akin.
Barr’s chances are likely buoyed by the fact that former Salt Lake City Mayor Rocky Anderson, a former Democrat, informed party officials this week that he was discontinuing his quest for the party’s nomination.
Founded in 1967, the Peace and Freedom Party is a relatively well-known, but small, left-wing party. In 1968 its presidential candidate was Black Panther leader Eldridge Cleaver.
Akin said the party will have ballot access in California, and likely in Florida — where he said organizers have until Saturday to clinch ballot listing ahead of November’s vote. He said the party’s nominee will almost certainly appear on other states’ ballots via cross-listing by other minor parties.
“Roseanne Barr, who seems to have considerale national attention, will probably be able to get the nominations of several of those minor parties,” Akin said, noting that Ralph Nader — the Green Party’s candidate in 1996 and 2000 — ran as an independent in 2004 and 2008 and appeared on many state ballots.
One distinction between the Green Party and the Peace and Freedom Party, Akin explained, is that “the word ‘socialist’ is often attached to our party and we don’t mind it one bit, [but] the Green Party typically avoids it.”
The tagline on Barr’s candidate statement on the Peace and Freedom Party’s website reads: “Socialism – it’s not just for Wall Street, military contractors, or Congress anymore, but all Americans!”
In June, Barr told TheDC about her particular dislike of Republican candidate Mitt Romney, joking about his Mormon faith and cautioning voters against voting for someone “who thinks Jesus was hanging out with the Indians and that the Romneys will be running their own planets in the hereafter.”
Her bombastic style will likely be on full display until November if she wins the Peace and Freedom Party nomination. On Obama, she previously told TheDC, “If you press me, I suppose I’d have to say I find him less odious than Robme.” However, she said, either would “cater to the big moneyed interests that basically control everything.”
Barr’s Twitter account frequently attracts news coverage for the incendiary political commentary she shares with followers. Earlier this week she apologized after tweeting: “Anyone who eats Shit Fil-A deserves to get the cancer that is sure to come from eating antibiotic filled tortured chickens 4Christ.”
Stein may not be the only third-party candidate with something to worry about. In July Libertarian Party presidential candidate Gary Johnson told TheDC he was glad that Barr — with whom he shares a handful of anti-war and anti-authoritarian political positions — wouldn’t be “a distraction” in the November election.

2012-08-06 "A New Option for LGBT Voters? Roseanne Barr Wins Presidential Nomination" by Lucas Grindley from "The Advocate" LGBTQ community newspaper for the San Francisco Bay Area []:
Giving voters yet another presidential candidate who favors marriage equality, Roseanne Barr won the nomination of the Peace and Freedom Party during its convention this weekend.
"I am the only serious comedian in this campaign," she joked during the convention. "Both of the others are clowns."
(See the clip here [])
The television star has long been an outspoken supporter of LGBT rights. She was named The Advocate's "Person of the Year" in 1994 and included in its "Heroes" list for successfully fighting producers and network executives to include some of television's first realistic portrayals of gay characters. She has two siblings who are gay and who have long been in relationships. Barr's sister and partner have been together for 25 years and have twin daughters. Her brother and partner of 26 years have grandchildren.
"They deserve every ounce of equality with any other Americans," Barr told The Advocate. "They are wonderful, productive human beings, and are the reason I am such an activist for LGBT issues and always will be."
Always the comedian, she added, "I just wish one of my relationships had lasted as long as theirs!"
While Barr is a long-shot to win the highest office in the United States, her name on the Peace and Freedom ticket combined with that of her vice presidential selection — peace activist Cindy Sheehan — is hoped to drive party membership, which will help ensure Peace and Freedom remains on ballots nationwide.
Last cycle, the party ran famed consumer advocate Ralph Nader. He was a former Green Party candidate, a nomination Barr had also sought but was beaten by Jill Stein — who also favors marriage equality.
Another third-party option for LGBT voters might be former New Mexico governor Gary Johnson, who favors marriage equality and is running on the Libertarian Party ticket after dropping out of the Republican Party's primary. President Obama, a Democrat, also favors marriage equality, while Republican Mitt Romney wants to outlaw it via an amenmdent to the U.S. Constitution.

2012-07-29 message from "Cindy Sheehan's MEGAPHONE"
Dear Friend,
I am happy to announce that this email service gave me a discount to return and I was also pleased to find out that the "open rate" for these newsletters that I send out far exceed "industry standards" so I can return to providing this newsletter which will now be called: THE MEGAPHONE.
Thank you for all your messages of solidarity and support this month since I felt the need to terminate my weekly always, I appreciate your feedback.
Cindy Sheehan's Soapbox has had a pretty rotten year fundraising, but we are squeaking by--if you are in the position to make a donation, we appreciate it! The link is enclosed in this newsletter as well as information for the radio show and other pertinent information.
I suppose the biggest news I have to relate is that Roseanne Barr is seeking the nomination of the Peace and Freedom Party in California to run for President of the USA and she has chosen me to be her running mate! As a member of PFP and one committed to the ideas and ideals of socialist revolution, I was thrilled to accept her request. I also love Roseanne and you can listen to the interviews I have done with her over the years here [].
The press release announcing our candidacy can be read here [].
Although I am honored by this chance to have a bigger platform to talk about all the things that I really care about and have been working so hard for since my son was killed, I have no delusions about the imperialist cystem that we live under. For third parties or independents to truly have a chance, the Empire must collapse under its own weight with some pushing by us.
From an historical perspective, the Empire will collapse, it's just a matter of time and that's why alternative voices, plans and energy must actively work for this. There is a better way but Mittrack Rombama won't show us that way.
Peace & Love!
Cindy Sheehan

Peace & Freedom Party - California Convention resolutions

The following resolution is endorsed:
"Resolution of Solidarity with the Mobilization of Mothers (MOMs)" from Peace and Freedom Party of California - Women's Committee & Feminist Contingent:
We, the Women's Committee, in order that we may uphold the cause for Human Rights for the victims of police murder and their families and an end to police terror and systematic cover-up, after having reviewed and endorsed the mission of the "Mobilization of Mothers (MOMs)", stand United with them so as to connect with other mothers in the same situation caused by murderous police practices, and connecting the dots of injustice across the USA.
Therefore, in a United Front with other organizations, we are helping to form a "Million Mothers Movement" with the ultimate goal of a "Million Mothers March" to Washington DC so as to demand legislation which protects the People against these aggrievous Human Rights violations be introduced and made law.
By endorsement of this resolution, the SCC agrees with and supports the following Women's Committee plan of action:
* We will conduct outreach to young mothers and all people who are willing to listen.
* We will form a proactive group through the Women's Committee to promote and plan an event in solidarity with the "Million Mothers Movement/March".
 * We will fully endorse the "Kenneth Harding jr. Foundation".
* We will begin a lobbying campaign to tell Washington lawmakers that it's not ok that the police are killing our children, brutally in the streets, and we are not going to get used to it!!! We are angry and we want justice for all victims of police murder and their families, and an end to police terror.
We ask that PFP SCC endorse our resolution.
We ask Party chapters join the PFP Women's Committee in organizing
 solidarity for this cause of Human Rights.

The following motion is endorsed:

Radical Women [National Office: 747 Polk Street, San Francisco, CA 94109] [415-864-1278][] []
 As battered women often discover, the system that should protect them is frequently their worst enemy.
 Marissa Alexander, a 31-year-old African American mother of three living in Tampa, Florida, tried to follow the rules. She had a restraining order against her estranged husband, who had a record of abuse toward Alexander and other women. She had a legally licensed gun and had never been arrested. In August 2010, only nine days after having given birth, Alexander fired a warning shot into the wall of her house when her husband threatened her life. For this, a Florida jury convicted her of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon after only 12 minutes of deliberation. On May 11, 2012, a judge rejected Alexander's "stand-your-ground defense" and sentenced her to 20 years under Florida's mandatory minimum sentencing rules. Stand-your-ground laws permit a person to use force in self-defense if they believe they are in serious threat of harm.
 According to a number of studies, African American women suffer higher levels of domestic abuse than any other ethnic group, most likely as a result of the stresses of poverty and discrimination. Black women are murdered by their partners at a rate three times that of white women. Jobless or low-paid, with a well-earned distrust of the criminal justice system, and a history of discrimination from health and social service institutions, abused women of color often have few resources to draw upon.
 Women of all races who fight back against abuse find little sympathy from police, courts, or media. In states where police are mandated to make an arrest in domestic violence situations, arrests of women have risen dramatically. Women are now nearly 20% of domestic violence arrests although men are acknowledged to commit 95% of the abuse. Black feminist Sharon Allard has observed that the Battered Woman Syndrome defense, which has been successfully used in court to justify why a woman killed or took action against an abuser, is often denied to Black women. Why? Because the stereotype of Black women as "domineering, assertive, hostile and immoral" hinders a judge's or juror's ability to believe that a Black woman acted in self-defense. According to Allard, Black women are twice as likely as white women to be convicted for murdering abusive husbands.
 The racist and sexist double standard exists at every level of U.S. society. It took a national outcry for the killer of African American teenager Trayvon Martin to be arrested after he invoked Florida's "stand-your-ground" law. Meanwhile, Congress is balking at reauthorizing the federal Violence Against Women Act, in part because the act contains new provisions that would help protect queers, Native Americans and immigrants.
 Radical Women demands the immediate release and pardon of Marissa Alexander, passage of the strengthened Violence Against Women Act, and an end to race and sex discrimination in the criminal justice system. In addition, Radical Women calls for massive increases in funding for jobs, aid to families, and shelters and services for everyone fleeing domestic violence regardless of their sexual orientation or immigration status.
 Radical Women encourages supporters of women's rights to sign the online petition to pardon Alexander at []. Information on how to donate to Marissa Alexander's legal defense and write to her in prison is available at [].

The following resolution is endorsed:
PFP Youth Committee resolution: Our Plan of Action.
Youth Committee will produce cultural events on campuses and communities with the mission of spreading the ideas of Peace, Freedom, Dignity, Democracy and Justice. Through music, entertainment, festivals, or any other form of promotion, we will put forward the ideas contained in our platform.
We will engage youth of all socio-economic backgrounds belonging to the working classes, and the lumpenproletariat classes. We seek to openly engage the consciousness of youth who remain in the permanent placement of poverty, to steer our minds in the direction of rebuilding our community by channeling ourselves into a pluri-national alliance with a culture of progressive values.
We seek representation by all communities and people, and to build alliances with organizations who engage our pluri-national communities with our ideas, and to bridge our cultural divide towards a combined voice for all the People. As the youth rebuild our future, we will engage ourselves in the spirit of a united cause for all human & civil rights.
We will promote the idea of labor unions among the workers of the Service Industry, which, oftentimes, is the only choice of employment for most youth in certain communities. We must organize to protect our labor rights in order to uplift the social conditions of our communities, and we will be the voice of the youth workers on the ballot.
We seek to protect and expand public education, and higher education, so that youth and young adults may have the freedom to an education that fits the needs of their chosen vocation or pursuit. Therefore, we seek to represent all students through the organizing of forums and assemblies at any institution available for higher learning, so we can hear the concerns and ideas of students, in order to formulize solutions which we can advocate.

Sunday, August 5, 2012

2012-08-10 "Freedom Socialist presidential candidate comes in second to last-minute celebrity entrant Roseanne Barr" statement from the "Freedom Socialist Party"

After declaring as a Peace and Freedom Party (PFP) presidential candidate only three weeks before, Hollywood comedian and actress Roseanne Barr won the PFP nomination at its convention on Aug. 4-5 in Los Angeles. Placing second was New Yorker and veteran union and gay rights activist Stephen Durham of the Freedom Socialist Party (FSP), who, like Stewart Alexander of the Socialist Party, had waged a serious, months-long grass-roots campaign for the PFP nomination.

Said Durham, whose running mate is Chicana feminist organizer Christina López of Seattle, “The convention of the socialist and feminist PFP was hijacked by a millionaire celebrity making grand promises. But her total contribution to the PFP so far has been a 15-minute talk at the convention that was half political speech and half comedy act.”
Barr, who reinvented herself as a socialist in the few weeks before the PFP vote, did not show up for a candidates’ forum the night before the convention. She was represented there by her vice-presidential partner, anti-war activist Cindy Sheehan. On Saturday, Aug. 4, the opening day of the convention, Barr’s appearance was preceded by a security detail while delegates sat waiting for her to arrive, which she did in a flurry of media. She left after giving her speech, and took the media attention with her, headed for the taping of a Comedy Central roast in her honor. Delegates were unable to ask her questions.
Barr had originally announced as a candidate for the Green Party nomination, but lost decisively to Jill Stein, whom Barr had pledged to support should Stein become the nominee. Barr did not attend the Green Party convention in July.
Now Barr is promising to do major fundraising and help register voters for PFP, a California-based left electoral coalition that is in a fight for its life thanks to new state ballot laws hostile to minor parties. The Durham-López team had argued for making a PFP registration drive part of a bold two-year grass-roots campaign statewide, explicitly anti-capitalist and feminist, to protest the rigged electoral system and organize with others to demand relief for those hit hardest by war, bailouts for corporations, and austerity for workers.
After Barr delivered her speech and left, and just moments before PFP delegates began voting, Peta Lindsay, the presidential candidate of the Party for Socialism and Liberation (PSL), abruptly withdrew from contention after being nominated – and pledged support for the Barr-Sheehan ticket. Lindsay, who is underage to take presidential office, was barred from the California ballot in February, but continued to campaign for the PFP nomination. She explained her surprise convention move by saying that she did not want to leave the PFP without a candidate if she won the nomination but lost the court case challenging her exclusion from the ballot.
It took two rounds of voting for Barr to gather a majority, and the final tally was 36 votes for Barr, 16 for Durham, and 6 for the Socialist Party’s Alexander. Former Salt Lake City Mayor Rocky Anderson of the Justice Party had dropped out of the race a few days before the convention.
FSP Campaign Manager Doug Barnes was at the PFP convention with Durham, López, and supporters. About Lindsay’s bombshell, he said, “Lindsay and the PSL portrayed themselves as the revolutionary socialist contenders in the PFP race. But what revolutionary socialist is going to support a millionaire for U.S. president? That’s ridiculous. So is saying while endorsing Barr that they will run a write-in campaign in California for Lindsay.”
Concluded Barnes, “PSL was not serious about anything but blocking the FSP and Socialist Party. It was a disgusting display of left sectarianism – especially since FSP has supported PSL candidates in the past on the basis of their professed socialist program.”
Sheehan, Barr’s vice-presidential candidate, has pledged to support Peta Lindsay and other PSL candidates where they are not competing with Barr and Sheehan. “This political horse-trading is exactly what one would expect to see at a Republican or Democratic Party convention,” Durham said. “On the other hand, the delegates who stood with us through to the end because of our socialist feminist platform showed a lot of character. They stuck to their principles.”
Vice-presidential candidate Christina López added, “We have met so many people in California who are excited about the fact that we are offering concrete, practical, working-class solutions for the problems people face, especially those who are discriminated against, paid the least, and treated the worst. We hope our friends in California are proud of all the wonderful outreach they have done, and we look forward to continuing to work with them and broadening our national write-in campaign in the state and across the U.S.”
López, Durham, and Barnes are meeting with supporters, speaking at forums, and making whistle stops at shopping malls as they drive north from Los Angeles in the middle of a six-week tour of California, Oregon, and Washington. The candidates are also participating in union picket lines, immigrant activist gatherings, and more.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Peace and Freedom Party Presidential Candidates Survey

The Los Angeles County Central Committee asked all five candidates for the Peace and Freedom Party presidential nomination to participate in a survey of the candidates. Here are the five responses.

2012-02-26 "Murrieta Man Seeks Oval Office: Stewart Alexander of Murrieta is a Peace and Freedom Party candidate for the office of president of the United States"
by Maggie Avants []:
A Murrieta man has thrown his hat into the 2012 presidential race.
Stewart Alexander, 60, is a Peace and Freedom Party candidate. He is listed alongside names such as Barack Obama, Mitt Romney and Roseanne Barr on the latest presidential candidate list provided by the Riverside County Registrar of Voters Office.
Alexander is no stranger to politics. He said he has been involved politically for 25 years. In a telephone interview, Alexander told Patch he ran for lieutenant governor of California in 2006. In that race he said he garnered 43,000 votes. He also ran for mayor of Los Angeles in 1989, he said, and was a vice presidential candidate for the Socialist Party USA in 2008.
"I have been very much involved in the fight to make sure small parties have ballot access," Alexander said.
Alexander believes he offers a knowledge of the working class. That includes warehousing, sales, small business and big business, he said.
"Most of the people in Washington haven't worked," he said.
He said he wants to fight for the rights of the working class.
"We have seen an exodus of good paying jobs," he said, of California. "Many of the technology companies have gone overseas."
To balance the federal budget, Alexander said "tremendous" cuts need to be made in military spending.
"We need to make 50 percent in cuts."
Alexander said he does not support U.S. involvement in Afghanistan, Libya or in escalating talks of sanctions on Iran.
"We are just moving toward another war."
What he does advocate is a single-payer health care system and investing in public education.
"Right now we have 49 million people without adequate health care coverage. On the national level we have seen a tax on Social Security and Medicaid.
"We have also seen a tax on our youth. We have a responsibility to make sure our youth receive an education."
In addition, he said more needs to be done to protect the environment. There has been a cover-up of the Gulf spill by the Obama Administration, he said.
"The mess is still there; it hasn't been cleaned up."
Alexander, who presently works in auto sales, has lived in Murrieta since 1999. Together with his wife of 12 years, the couple has four children and seven grandchildren.
He has never held public office, but said his track record of political involvement qualifies him for the job of president. His running mate, Alex Mendoza, of Texas, would serve as vice president.
To get the word out, Alexander said they have been using the Internet and independent media.
"We have been contacted by a movie producer that wants to create a movie on the challenges for third parties in the U.S. and third party candidates. Hopefully the movie will be out before the election in November."
Find out more about Alexander's campaign by visiting [].

2012-08-01 "A note from the Socialist Party USA's Alexander/Mendoza Campaign" by Mimi Soltysik, National Campaign Manager:
Hello to all on the Peace and Freedom Party Comrades
First, we would like to extend our warmest thanks for affording our campaign the opportunity to run for the Peace and Freedom Party Presidential nomination. This process has fostered new working relationships between the Peace and Freedom Party and the Socialist Party USA, and we have thoroughly enjoyed the cooperation and camaraderie you have extended to us over the last year.
Why do we feel that Stewart and Alex are the perfect choices for the Peace and Freedom nomination? From our perspective, the answers are pretty simple. Stewart has established himself as an advocate for and an activist within the Peace and Freedom Party for well over a decade and continues to promote the virtues of the Peace and Freedom Party in numerous media opportunities -- not just in California, but throughout the country. You can count on Stewart to maintain an active presence within the Peace and Freedom Party well beyond this election.
Not only does the Alexander/Mendoza 2012 ticket represent the voice of the struggles faced by minorities in California, but both Stewart and Alex are living examples of the U.S. working class wage earner, struggling to put food on the table. We continually hear throughout this campaign statements like "he is no different than me" or "they speak to me, not at me". These two are not academics. Stewart and Alex are the people they are trying to represent. Both are committed to and vehemently passionate about spreading the socialist message, in full compliance with the Peace and Freedom Party platform; this is not a reform ticket.
Finally, we would like to address some concerns that we have seen with regard to the Alexander/Mendoza 2012 Campaign, primarily the notion that the Socialist Party USA and the Campaign do not take the Peace and Freedom Party nomination seriously. Nothing could be further from the truth. The Party's California chapter was only chartered in late June of 2011, and consequently, the overwhelming majority of California Socialist Party USA members were not registered to vote Peace and Freedom in time to run for Central Committee. An earnest effort was made in Los Angeles to run write-in candidates. Frankly, the Socialist Party of California had placed considerable effort to re-establishing itself in California during the first portion of 2011 after having been dormant for over a decade. While we are sad to see that the dormancy of the past will have an effect on our ability to secure the Peace and Freedom Party nomination, we are very proud of what we have been able to accomplish with our campaign in California. Although we are fully aware that the presidential primary in California is inconsequential, we were able to finish in second place with very limited resources and a just-established presence in the state, which we feel is indicative of how serious the SPUSA in California approaches this campaign.
Alexander/Mendoza 2012 is a working class ticket. It is a ticket supported by a vibrant, energetic and enthusiastic Party that is growing quickly in California. The Socialist Party USA cannot and does not claim thousands of dues-paying members in California, but our focus is continued growth and impact. We have risen from the ashes and feel we will be able to provide the Peace and Freedom Party and the socialist movement with a willing partner in the working-class struggle for decades to come.
We are looking forward to a productive and enjoyable Peace and Freedom Party Convention!
In solidarity,
The Alexander/Mendoza 2012 Campaign

John Stossel invites PFP candidate Stewart Alexander to appear on Fox Business to discuss Third Party Issues:
 Fox Business News with John Stossel has invited Third Party Candidates to participate on a panel to discuss ballot access, issues that are important to their campaigns and the Third Parties that they represent.  The show will be nationally televised with the presidential candidates from the Libertarian Party, the Constitution Party, and Stewart Alexander, Presidential Nominee for the Socialist Party USA and presidential candidate with the Peace and Freedom Party
Time and dates for airing will be announced.   
Stewart A. Alexander []