- Please forward!!! Sent from my iPhone Begin forwarded message: From: Flveterans@aol.com Date: June 15, 2009 12:53:58 PM EDT To: Lcmitch78@yahoo.com Subject: WeMessage 1 of 1 , Jun 15, 2009View Source
Sent from my iPhone
Begin forwarded message:Lauren,Here is an Email that went out from FLVCS last night. Please have Code Pink join us in the effort to end the Iraq occupation.Gene JonesFLVCSVOTE CLOSE ON IRAQ SUPPLEMENTALDO YOUR PART! CALL YOUR REPRESENTATIVE NOW.
39 House Democrats could end the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan/Pakistan (Af/Pak) by opposing the Pentagon's demand for another $95 billion. That's because all 178 Republicans will vote no over $5 billion for the IMF that has been added to the bill in the Senate.
34 Democrats have opposed the $95 billion supplement so we need just 5 more. It appears 15 are leaning no. 20 are undecided. The vote will be early this week. If you don't speak up now, when?
As far as we know among the Florida delegation, Alan Grayson Telephone (202) 225-2176 FAX (202) 225-0999 will vote NO. (Give him a vote of thanks!)
Alcee Hastings (District-23) (202) 225-1313 FAX (202) 225-1171 and SENATE CANDIDATE KENDRICK MEEK (Dist-17) (202) 225-4506 FAX (202) 226-0777 will vote yes. Ask them to explain and change their vote.
We don't have information on the others in the Florida delegation. Ask them when you call and let us know the response by return Email.
As long as you're calling, mention also that those responsible for authorizing torture like Federal Judge Jay Bybee should be held accountable. (See comments Below the Line)
Boyd, Allen (Dist-02) (202) 225-5235 FAX (202) 225-5615
Brown, Corrine (Dist-03) (202) 225-0123 FAX (202) 225 2256
Castor, Kathy (Dist-11) (202) 225-3376 FAX (202) 225-5652
Wexler, Robert (Dist-19) (202) 225-3001 FAX (202) 225-5974
Klein, Ron (Dist- 22) (202) 225-3026 FAX (202) 225-8398
Kosmas, Suzanne (Dist-24) (202) 225-2706 FAX (202) 226-6299
FLVCS believes that funds for the occupation of Iraq should be appropriated only for force protection and to bring the troops home. It's long past time that the Iraqis stand up for themselves.
To confuse the public, Congress has added into the Iraq Supplemental Appropriations bill many add-ons like the IMF and have lumped funding Afghanistan with Iraq. It should be voted down and then each separate item should be voted up or down. Let's see who supports the occupation in Iraq when we have critical needs at home and have to fund the Iraq occupation with borrowed money.BELOW THE LINE:
NOTICE: WATCH FLVCS "FRIEND," PROFESSOR HARVEY KAYE, ON BILL MOYER'S JOURNAL TAKLING ABOUT THOMAS PAINE. http://www.pbs.org/moyers/journal/06122009/watch2.html---------------------------------------Americans should not turn the page until they know what is written on it.-- Christian Century Magazine, on torture truth commission.
- JOIN FLVCS' FIGHT AGAINST TORTURE
- Editorial: Drawing the line on rigged districts From St. Pete Times
JOIN FLVCS' FIGHT AGAINST TORTURE
FLVCS continues the fight to hold accountable those responsible for torture. The issue is more than political. Unfortunately, the public at large has little appreciation that torture violates the law and is contrary to American values and history. Unless we veterans speak up, the public will believe pabulum that torture is acceptable and effective. We know that torture rarely elicits reliable information and puts our citizens and soldiers at risk for harm.
When we learned that Starbucks Coffee Company paid ten million dollars to sponsor on MSNBC, Joe in the Morning, hosted by torture apologist Joe Scaroborough; we sent Starbucks the letter set out below. You can help by contacting Starbucks and letting Starbucks managers know how Starbucks is hurting our troops by sponsoring a torture apologist. Inform your friends and organizations; speak out.
Once small step toward accountability occurred this week. Attorney John Yoo, who wrote shoddy legal memos to justify torture must respond to lawsuit filed against him. http://www.nytimes.com/2009/06/14/us/politics/14yoo.html?_r=1
FLVCS is pressing for the impeachment of Federal Judge Jay Bybee who also wrote memos justifying torture when he served with the justice department. His disgraceful record on torture was kept secret when he was confirmed. How can a suspected war criminal serve as Federal Judge? http://www.slate.com/id/2216432/
Contact your representative and Chair of the Senate and House Judiciary Committees to demand that impeachment proceedings be initiated against Bybee.
FLVCS LETTER TO STARBUCKS
June 11, 2009
Mr. Howard Schultz
Starbucks Coffee Company
2401 Utah Avenue South
Seattle , Washington 98134
Dear Mr. Schultz:
The decision by Starbucks to sponsor, Joe in the Morning, on MSNBC hosted by Joe Scarborough reflects poorly on Starbucks and puts its reputation as a socially responsible company at risk.
You recently made the comment that sponsoring “Morning Joe” gives Starbucks the opportunity to align with one of the smartest morning shows that air on TV. Nothing could be farther from the truth. Joe Scarborough is an apologist for torture and there is nothing smart about that. Those who authorized and conducted torture in the name of America have disgraced our country and dishonored every American soldier who ever wore the uniform.
Torture puts our soldiers at risk. Since George Washington, the American military never authorized torture until the last administration. Our enemies have always understood this and as a result thousands have surrendered to American troops because they knew they’d be treated humanely. Now, insurgents have little incentive to surrender and will fight to the death rather than surrender to face torture. Americans die as a result.
Torture serves as a recruiting tool for our enemies. When we engage in torture, Al Qaeda’s propaganda that America is an evil, rogue nation that doesn’t abide by international norms is confirmed. As General Petraeus said, "When we have taken steps that have violated the Geneva Conventions, we rightly have been criticized, so as we move forward I think it's important to again live our values, to live the agreements that we have made in the international justice arena and to practice those."
As a veterans’ advocacy organization, we trust that Starbucks will support the troops by refusing to sponsor those like Joe Scarborough who attempt to justify torture.
President, Florida Veterans for Common Sense, Inc.
FLVCS INITIATIVE "FAIR DISTRICTS"
FLVCS SUPPORTS FAIR DISTRICTING IN FLORIDA IN ORDER TO END GERRYMANDERED LEGISLATIVE AND CONGRESSIONAL DISTRICTS. WE ARE GATHERING PETITIONS. HARRY STIMMEL IS THE CONTACT PERSON, 941-966-7331.
Drawing the line on rigged districts
Published Monday, February 2, 2009 St. Petersburg Times
The Florida Supreme Court opened the door last week to greater accountability of elected officials when it approved for the ballot a citizens' initiative to change how political districts are drawn. Now supporters and Florida voters need to make sure this important reform comes to pass.
The current system for drawing legislative and congressional districts is broken. State lawmakers have used the once-a-decade process to draw safe seats for themselves and members of Congress. The result is incumbents are rarely threatened, as evidenced in November when a big shift in voter sentiment translated to little change in the partisan makeup of the Florida Legislature and the state's congressional delegation.
In response, a coalition of groups have banded together as "FairDistrictsFlorida.org" to push a pair of ballot measures aimed at outlawing gerrymandering in reapportionment for both Florida's legislative and congressional seats.
Last week, the Florida Supreme Court — rejecting the Legislature's arguments to the contrary — unanimously agreed the ballot language for the two measures was clear, one of the hurdles to getting on the ballot. The group now needs to collect 676,811 signatures for each measure, hopefully in time for the November 2010 ballot.
The proposals would require state lawmakers to draw districts that are compact and conform if possible to current political or geographic boundaries — so that cities and counties are not split apart and districts don't snake along a single block. No incumbent or party could be intentionally favored.
In a companion ruling, the court also set aside the required financial impact statement that put the cost of implementing the amendments at "millions of dollars." That statement, written by a team of state analysts, would have appeared on the ballot.
The Financial Impact Estimating Conference said its cost estimate was so high because it expected a sharp increase in court challenges to the districts drawn under the new standards. But the high court appropriately dismissed this as "fatally misleading." Justice Fred Lewis, writing for a 4 - 3 majority, said that no additional costs would be incurred, since litigation already routinely results after the decennial reapportionment and it presumes that the Legislature won't duly follow the new guidelines.
"Scare tactics and vague, unsupported predictions of financial disaster have no place in the constitutional-amendment process," Lewis wrote.
Two recent appointees of Gov. Charlie Crist, Justices Charles Canady and Ricky Polston, joined Justice Charlie Wells in the dissent. They did not see a role for the high court in trying to determine the general accuracy of the estimating conference's conclusions — a view that invites partisan attempts to doom citizen initiatives by burdening them with outlandish cost estimates.
The hope of the amendments' sponsors is if the voters pass the constitutional amendments in November 2010, the changes will be in place for the next redistricting in 2012. Bringing fairness to political districts will make elected officials more accountable and give voters substantially more power over the direction of the state. It can't happen soon enough.
© 2009 • All Rights Reserved • St. Petersburg Times