Time for New Wine in the Old Bottle

AOL 2010 CONGRESSIONAL CANDIDATES’  CLOSING ARGUMENTS


Time is long overdue to elect a Green Party candidate to Congress. Our nation and the planet are in deep trouble, and the moneyed two-party stacking of the electoral deck, producing decades of incompetence in Congress, is jointly responsible. Unlike my opponents, I am prohibited by Green Party bylaws from taking a single nickel of corporate or PAC donations.  Unlike my opponents, I am neither a career politician nor a high-paid reader of Teleprompters.  I’m a scientist and collegiate lecturer, who devoted 26 years of state service (CT Dept. of Environmental Protection) to defending the citizenry and ecology of southern New England.  I learned in that quarter century of duty what can happen to people and the environment (and Wall Street for that matter) when regulations are lifted or ignored.  It is never pretty, and it is always tragic.

 

A medallion awarded me in 2005 by the Chamber of Commerce of Eastern CT for my role in saving the Subase from BRAC closure (largely because of existing contamination) is just one testament to the importance of biological knowledge in solving our varied problems.  Naturally, I conclude that voters should put a high premium on candidate’s qualifications come November.  This is no time for slogans or “nice” people, who sound best in form while ducking the questions.  Neither will we be served by blind loyalties to political parties and meaningless partisan dogma.  We need people in Congress who are activists, not rubber stamps for earmarks, bad policies, misdirection and maintaining a dysfunctional status quo.

 

We’re in big trouble in America, and the systemic changes necessary to save our country require progressive politics.  History has shown us, furthermore, that such political reformations never come from inside the existing, corporately controlled two-party establishment.  Indeed, unfettered corporate power is the #1 threat to America these days.  Bear in mind that the new corporate ascendancy has created dozens of global companies larger than most national economies.  Corporations have become private governments to which our Democrat and Republican congressmen have become electoral sycophants and interchangeable parts.  The strategy of the two toxic parties is to select people who have no firm convictions beyond putting retention of power and their own political careers ahead of solving our problems, people who can be molded as career politicians and lack the education or experience to deal with crises of unprecedented debt, catastrophic pollution, crippling unemployment and worsening energy dilemmas. The two moneyed parties are the parties of failure and the expectation of failed memories.  They subvert democracy to support the corporate oligarchy.  Their approach is as old as imperialism, muttonchops beards and McKinley.  Candidates, who refuse to publicly acknowledge that fact, do not deserve our vote.  Such votes would be wasted, turned sour like wine stored in the summer sun.

 

The world is changing faster than our incremental, two-party Congress can adapt to it.  Science moves even faster, and policy makers, who lack scientific training and the knowledge which accompanies it, are a national liability, especially when they rely on questionable sources of information, skewed to corporate agendas, for remedial assistance.  Special interest distortions and misrepresentations of science are prevalent these days, and that should anger all but the perpetrators themselves.  But, be cautious.  It is never enough just to be angry.  Anger, without reason and sound judgment to channel it, only adds to the confusion, and confusion always helps the powerful.  Bombastic demagogues have fanned such anger into conflagrations to consume our best intentions and rational thought.  Failed artists and mad monks have attained political power that way with disastrous results.

 

I ask you, instead, to focus your rage into 20/20 foresight and a thorough evaluation of all the candidates’ qualifications.  Think of the issues: climate change, stem cell research, creating Green jobs and alternative/renewable energy, genetic modification of plants and animals and the threat of “monocrops” (a.k.a. green deserts) from transgenic contamination, food-borne bacterial illnesses and deaths, pandemics, human population growth and escalating demands on diminishing oil reserves, infrastructure repair, mass transit, affordable health care accessible to all, oceanic oil pollution, applying natural selection to Wall Street, depleted fish populations, the shell game and futures trading of cap-and-trade carbon offsets, sustainable local agriculture, zero-waste manufacturing.    We don’t need Democrat/Republican fat cats in Congress, groomed and pampered by special interest campaign donations (which they admittedly seek 3 of every 4 hours they spend in Washington).  We need alley cats, tough and determined, with degrees in the biological sciences, focused on problem solving.  One has a website (DeshefyforCongress.org).  I ask for your vote in November.

 

Scott Deshefy is Green Party candidate for U.S. House of Representatives in the 2nd CT Congressional District



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