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Walter Mason

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Reply with quote  #1 
I would like to share my personal perspective about the goals of the Justice Party, the things that I hope to achieve when I am contributing my time and energy to the party. 

The first goal is electing Ross C. "Rocky" Anderson as our president in November, 2012. This goal has three parts: 1) making people aware of the campaign, 2) getting on the ballot, and 3) voting. 

The second goal is the long term strategy. In twenty years I want there to be a major political party, that affects every election, every year. I want the interests of economic, environmental, social and civic justice to be furthered in my country, in my state, in my county, and in my city.

I am often asked if it is possible that we win the election in 2012, if we can even get on the ballot in the majority of states, if it is worth our time, energy, and money to contribute to this effort. Our first goal of electing Rocky in 2012 is not a probable goal--it's a long shot. But it is not impossible. I have taken the role of National Ballot Access Chair and everyday I am looking at the progress of our 51 simultaneous projects of getting on the ballot. In many states the magnitude of the task is like moving mountains. But we are not at a point where it is impossible in any state. We continue doing our work, what we can in the short hours before the next day begins, waiting for more people to join, waiting for more resources to arrive, waiting for miracles. There are mountains to move and each of us has but a shovel. I don't know what else to do than to push mine into the ground each day and if this mountain is meant to be moved then let us all pick up a shovel. 

In some states we are not going to make it on the ballot as the Justice Party. We will try as an independent. In some states we will not make it on as an independent. We will seek the nomination of other parties that have ballot access in that state. In some states there are no other parties that have ballot access. We will seek the nomination from American's Elect. We may not get that nomination. And in that case we will campaign for write-in votes. If there is something in the way, it's ok, we will walk around. We are determined to move forward. 

I am encouraged in my work knowing that tomorrow, someone that I've never heard of is going to contact me. They're going to tell me that they're interested in the Justice Party and they want to know how to help. This happens everyday. As long as this is happening then I know that we are participating in a growing movement. And because of our modern times I know that it is possible that our message will be communicated to more and more people everyday and that we may be able to achieve exponential growth in our support. I'm working everyday so that we'll be ready. If you want to join the fun then there is three things I'd have you do:

1) Go to Voterocky.org, learn about the topics, donate if you're able (the campaign needs funding to be more visible).
2) Go to Justicepartyusa.org, sign-up to volunteer, look for the contact person in your state so you can help get on the ballot, participate in this forum, donate to the party if you're able (because we rely on many volunteers and almost zero paid staff, we're able to make our funding go a long way toward building the party and getting ballot access).
3) When November rolls around be ready to vote Rocky. 

Ok, maybe that was more than three things. On that note, there is no end to the ways you can contribute to this movement. All methods that get the word out and grow support are welcome. This forum is a great place to talk about the many open-ended ways we can use our talents and resources to contribute. 
No Difference

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Reply with quote  #2 
I am a cynical kind of person and I see this campaign no differently.  I also see no difference between the aristocratic D's and R's.  I feel most of the smaller parties (Green Party, Socialist Party, etc.) on the left are useless, frankly, mostly due to internal dysfunctionality of disproportionately large egos, timid membership overall, and lack of any real strategy.

The first question is can this party put Rocky Anderson into the Oval Office?   One can argue this until the Sunday after heck freezes over and the cows are all home again.  But I will, for the sake of moving this along, dispense with my usual cynicism and assume Mr. Anderson is able to win, and does, in fact, win the presidency of the United States.   Instead, I will focus on my cynicism of post-election events.

So Mr. Anderson steps into the Oval Office to the fanfare of the public and probably a lot (most?) government employees.  Maybe he is widely loved by the people.  Sounds good so far, but ...

What does Rocky Anderson do with over 500 corrupted and incorrigible Congresspersons?  Does the Prez just veto every bill they put to him?   Actually, does the Congress send him ANY bills to sign?   What will our television screens look like? 

So here's a president being blamed for being intransigent, unwilling to "compromise" (or, in English, give in to the Congress who mainly represent the 1%), and a -- omg, that word again -- a, a, a ... SOCIALIST (cue scary music) by the Republicans.  And viewers can see the appalled looks on the Democratic members of Congress, maybe unsure what to do about this administration.   And what is President Anderson saying to Wolf Blitzer about this? 

Now, I expect the reaction in this forum to include quite a few reactions admonishing me of "putting the cart before the horse," and -- just wait! just wait! -- Anderson HAS a plan.  Or maybe they see millions of American voters running to Rocky's side to defend him from the barbaric attacks from our oh-so venerable Congress.

And this goes for Cynthia McKinney, Jill Stein, Stewart Alexander, and any other leftist running for president; I am not singling out Rocky Anderson.  I believe he is a good man, with very good intentions, just like the others I named. 

The trouble is not them, nor is it caused by them.  The trouble is that you first need a Congress that represents the people, not the 1%.  Until that issue is addressed, I believe it is almost pointless to run a candidate for president.

So go gather those signatures, and good luck.  I will join you when I truly feel that the party has a plan for addressing the lack of representation of The People in Congress.  Because, otherwise, let's face it -- and perhaps here is my cynicism returning -- there is no chance anything truly progressive will happen short of Anderson declaring himself emperor and dissolving that pesky Congress altogether.  Then we might start getting some stuff done, right?  (Not.)


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Cooperation, coordination, and clarity are essential to creating a political party based on equality. Cliches and equivocations will not move this or any other party forward.
JoshuaBudden

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Reply with quote  #3 
Even if congress is against the president across the board, the president still has A LOT of power.  Supreme Court appointing.  Commander and Chief.  Issuing and repealing executive orders.

He can stop congress from moving the US embassy in Israel to Jerusalem, like the last two have.  He could remove us from participation in ACTA.  Pursue prosecution of banks for fraud and other criminal acts..  Give his party legitimacy, leading to Justice Party representation in congress.  Stop drone attacks on rescuers. Improve diplomacy...
Walter Mason

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Reply with quote  #4 
You are posting on a JusticePartyUSA.org forum. This is not VoteRocky.org. We have a presidential candidate for 2012 but our goals are to develop an enduring party to run candidates at all levels. We already have many candidates approaching us for all the positions coming up for election in 2012. May we have many more in 2014. 

Let's not let "What if's" about the future stop us from the obvious action that is required today. 

No Difference

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Reply with quote  #5 
Joshua:

The president does not really "appoint" Supreme Court justices.  The president nominates individuals, but the Senate has to confirm these choices; they are not always confirmed.  If you were around for the Bourke and Satemayor or Roberts "appointments" then you would know that sometimes they are quite challenged. 

And don't ask me to list the ones that didn't make it. In fact, many do not even make it to the Senate.  So, with a hostile Senate, Anderson could have a hard time indeed getting any of his selections confirmed to the SCOTUS.  If any do get confirmed, it may be a compromise candidate.  We've had enough compromise in this country to last a long time, including the sad state of our current court, which gleefully voted to reify the doctrine of corporate personhood.

Walter:

You continue to state that you are building a party.  My question is HOW, not if.  So it is not me who is stopping this process, if I am indeed stopping it at all.  Is there a problem with doubt and questions?  Or are party candidates beyond reproach, like a monarch?

Who are these other candidates, and where are they running?

And, yes, may there be many more.  But your web page focuses on the presidential race, just like many other smaller parties.  And it is this focus that ruins the People's chances of getting the representation they need in the Congress. 

In my mind, George W. Bush's dog could be president, but with a STRONG Congress representing The People, that dog will get smacked back if it tries to tear a hole in our social welfare programs.  That, I believe, was the intent of the framers.

I do not want to see another small party fail because it didn't try for the lowest-hanging fruit that could be won easily.  The limited money and people in a new and small party would go far further by supporting many, many campaigns at the city and county level where The People actually live and work and bear children.

The president, by comparison, lives and works in a magic bubble insulated from the daily suffering and challenges of The People.

All I am saying is to consider this possibility carefully.


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Cooperation, coordination, and clarity are essential to creating a political party based on equality. Cliches and equivocations will not move this or any other party forward.
JoshuaBudden

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Reply with quote  #6 
Yes, congress must approve who a President selects.  I made several other points, you did not address.  And however you want to split it, the Pres has plenty of power, even with an obstructionist congress.
 
 "your web page focuses on the presidential race, just like many other smaller parties.  And it is this focus that ruins the People's chances of getting the representation they need in the Congress"
 
I do see truth in this.  Justice Party needs to look at getting people in offices on all levels, whether it means running people or recruiting some that are already in office and disinfranchised with their current party.
 
So to address the goal in the OP, does anyone have any ideas on how to reach out to potential candidates.  Is there anyone considering running at any level aaside from POTUS? 
JoshuaBudden

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Reply with quote  #7 
"So go gather those signatures, and good luck.  I will join you when I truly feel that the party has a plan for addressing the lack of representation of The People in Congress"
 
You could wait for us to, or you could help make it happen.
No Difference

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Reply with quote  #8 
I do see truth in this.  Justice Party needs to look at getting people in offices on all levels, whether it means running people or recruiting some that are already in office and disinfranchised with their current party.

I'm glad you see my point.  The POTUS is a mere dog-and-pony show; the COTUS is where laws originate and are vetted, brought to the floor, and eventually pass.  Even a veto can sometimes be overridden by Congress. 

(I really believe that) the framers intended for the power of the people to be vested in the Congress, not the President.  The President, I think, was sort of a compromise, a way to replace the monarch figure.  But that's just my belief.  At any rate, it is we, and not the Constitution, attributing so much power to the POTUS and nearly no power to our representatives in Congress.

"So go gather those signatures, and good luck.  I will join you when I truly feel that the party has a plan for addressing the lack of representation of The People in Congress"
 
You could wait for us to, or you could help make it happen.


As I said previously, I am not budging until I observe some type of strategy in this regard.  It sounds like you, at least, are interested in what I have to say about this, and I appreciate your consideration. 

But I note that while Mississippi seems to have gotten ballot access for JP, you have not made mention of that fact in a prominent location on your website; this is what I mean when I say that your site seems focused on the Presidential race.  I am surprised that JP has not made more of a celebration of this fact, as it is hard work to obtain ballot access in most states.

Q. Why not list the many candidates approaching the party?  Are there any hopefuls in MS?

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Cooperation, coordination, and clarity are essential to creating a political party based on equality. Cliches and equivocations will not move this or any other party forward.
Andy Kern

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Reply with quote  #9 

David Levitt is a JP candidate for a US Senate seat in CA.

http://justicepartywa.blogspot.com/2012/02/justice-party-candidate-for-us-senate.html

http://levitt2012.org/

Edit- not a JP candidate. My bad. He announced his candidacy on voterocky.org  http://www.voterocky.org/davidl

A little confusing.




JoshuaBudden

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Reply with quote  #10 
Andy, I was excited about the headline, but confused by the text "Levitt is campaigning as a Democrat"
Andy Kern

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Reply with quote  #11 
Yea, looks like you're right about his party affiliation. I jumped to a conclusion not based on facts. Actually, I had just finished watching the Republican debate from AZ, saw this on the net and was inspired to make stuff up
Andy Kern

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Reply with quote  #12 

This is interesting. He's running as a Dem with all of Rocky's positions as his platform. I guess that works.

Issues & Solutions

Most Americans already want universal health care, support marriage equality, and want out of the Afghanistan war and the Drug war.  We want criminals to be charged brought to trial and, if they're found guilty, fined and jailed - even if they're wealthy bankers.  We want the accused to have a fair trial with charges and evidence - even if they're Muslims.  It's not that controversial - it's basic.  

But somehow it doesn't matter what we want when party politicians fail to represent us.  By now it's well documented: our efforts at democracy have been captured by wealthy financial, military, insurance, fossil fuel and other industries.  We're led away from the solutions Americans want and need, no matter how proven or popular they are.

Once we elect true representatives, the issues outlined here become managable.   The solutions here let us:

  • save trillions of dollars
  • end reckless, needless wars, and become safer
  • reinvigorate our struggling middle class
  • celebrate justice, rather than tap fear and vengeance
  • embrace the rule of law - the same rules for the wealthy, the outsider, and the average person 
  • become more competitive in global markets
  • sensibly address critical global energy and climate issues

In the 2012 elections, folks have begun referring to many of these ideas as a Justice Platform.

I'll spell out more of these issues here over time.  Meanwhile, you can find articulate discussions of Issues and Solutions at the Rocky Anderson for President site at VoteRocky.org.  I haven't found I disagree with any of the issues and solutions presented there.

Most of these ideas aren't new.  We just need a government with real representatives who will execute them.  That's why we're finding new people running for office in 2012.  I'm proud to be joining them

PKonkoly

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Reply with quote  #13 
Quote:
Originally Posted by No Difference


I do not want to see another small party fail because it didn't try for the lowest-hanging fruit that could be won easily.  The limited money and people in a new and small party would go far further by supporting many, many campaigns at the city and county level where The People actually live and work and bear children.




Can't ask for more than "I do not want to see another small party fail"  other than please join and find the lowest fruit in MS and tell us about it so we can learn, in all 50 states, what to look for.  Move the JP in MS toward it.  Please do your part, you already have a good start, at preventing our failure.


Should the unthinkable happen, you and I, along with many others, can take the JP lessons learned and try it again.

What do you say?
No Difference

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Reply with quote  #14 
I don't live in MS, so I could not help in that state.

And I think you might still be missing the point I am making.  Other than Rocky Anderson, how many experienced politicians does the JP have? 

I would be embarrassed to support someone for, say, Congress, without having ever held a public office before that.  I would have no way of knowing if they could fail due to lack of experience. 

How would I even know if they were true to the party agenda?  If they turn out not to be, I'd rather find out at a lower level of government where they could be publicly denounced by locals.  That is much harder to do the higher up and more corrupt bad politicians get, and the deeper the pockets of their benefactors.  Wealth creates impenetrable walls of immunity, it seems.

What's wrong with starting at the bottom -- you know, where the grassroots exist -- and building up a political resume over time, just like working people have to do?  As they move up, the party membership will feel more secure in backing and supporting these individuals.  If they do start to go bad, corrective measures can be taken before they can do more harm (at your own expense of time, money, and emotional commitment!).

There's nothing wrong with an occasional "dark horse" candidate at higher levels, I guess, but most of the time I'd prefer to stick with familiar people, ones who have proven their mettle at lower levels, politicians that at least some of the membership have been directly affected by.


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Cooperation, coordination, and clarity are essential to creating a political party based on equality. Cliches and equivocations will not move this or any other party forward.
PKonkoly

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Reply with quote  #15 
Quote:
Originally Posted by No Difference


Q. Why not list the many candidates approaching the party?  Are there any hopefuls in MS?


Sorry about the misunderstanding, you mentioned MS and I jumped to the conclusion that you  lived in MS.

My suggestion is that you get involved at the lowest JP level possible (that is probably at the state level) where you can do something about all your points.  You want to be the first to take it to a lower level (e.g. county committee) - go for it. 

  1. Find like minded people
  2. Get a charter and bylaws together
  3. Elect committee officers following your bylaws
  4. Understand and comply with required governmental registration processes for a political committee (e.g., registration and financial disclosure).
  5. Formulate your platform (hope it will be 100% match with Rocky's) following your bylaws.
  6. Start fundraising following your bylaws
  7. Seek and engage volunteers.
  8. Seek qualified candidates based on your bylaws.
  9. Promote candidates.
  10. Get the candidate on the ballot.

I agree with all your points my nameless skeptical friend and feel just as frustrated at the missing things and the lack of things.  JP is scrambling to get it together while trying to place Rocky on the ballots.  I chose to do my best, because I believe in Rocky's solutions,  to go beyond pointing out organizational problems.   I gave money ($1- $100) to Rocky and JP and now I'm giving my time to organize and work on the "to do lists", which are evolving.  I invite you to do the same.
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