Daily Archives: March 4, 2016

The North Star interviews Mary Scully, independent socialist candidate for president

mary scully

Mary Scully

From Jim Brash at The North Star, February 20th:

1. Tell us about yourself and your personal history as an activist and socialist.

I come from a conservative, Catholic working class family. My father was an electrician. I am the 4th of 19 children and spent most of my youth caring for siblings since my mother was always pregnant. To this day, children remain my primary inspiration in politics.

I had no options in 1962 for going to college. My grades had suffered from doing childcare, and as a working class girl, college was unaffordable and wasn’t considered my destiny. I had always been interested in children with learning disabilities and worked throughout high school summers at a boarding school run by nuns for learning disabled girls. High school graduation looked like a 600-foot cliff so I applied to the order and joined in 1962.

I remained in the novitiate for just over 2-1/2 years but left for several reasons: they removed me from childcare because I refused to use physical violence on the girls and made me an apprentice cook instead; the Vietnam War had started and one of my older brothers was sent but the convent would not allow me to read about the war; they would not allow me to go to college because they said I lacked sufficient intelligence; and lastly, I was deeply offended by the unequal relationships between men and women in the church.

I worked after the convent as a bank teller and then applied to the University of Minnesota since student aid was now available to working class students. I began in 1966 and my first mission on the campus was to head for the antiwar movement. I also became involved in Palestinian solidarity in 1967.

I had become a feminist in the convent and when the women’s movement began in NYC, I took a suitcase on a bus to a Cleveland antiwar conference in 1970 and hitchhiked on a bus from the conference to NYC.  I became involved in building the August 26th 1970 Women’s March for Equality and am a part of its history.

I joined the Young Socialist Alliance in 1970 and SWP in 1971. My tenure was always troubled because I found it profoundly elitist and undemocratic in its internal functioning. But I am forever grateful for the theoretical education I received—from the literature I was introduced to, especially James P. Cannon and Trotsky; through the political debates and disputes; and from activism in several movements.

I might also say there is a negative kind of education one receives from rebelling against lack of democracy in an organization. I had sharp disputes with the SWP leadership for many years and resigned after eleven years because I found the leadership dishonesty, arrogance, and lack of democracy intolerable and recognized it had no chance in hell of leading social transformation anywhere. The experience has made me  hyper-sensitive to lack of democracy within organizations.

2. Why are you running in 2016?

I knew it would be an uphill battle but there was no one running who represented the political perspectives of socialists—the uncompromising opposition to wars; absolute commitment to the struggle of the Black community against discrimination and the war on Black youth; ardent support for refugees and immigrant rights; and commitment to women’s rights, LGBT rights, and other social struggles.

Read the rest of the interview here. 

Oklahoma Green Party explains Bernie Sanders endorsement in interview

gpok_logo

From The North Star, February 26th (Note, Bernie Sanders won the Democratic presidential primary on March 1st)

Questions posed to Rachel Jackson, State Facilitator, Green Party Oklahoma Cooperative Council about their endorsement of Bernie Sanders

  1. Is the endorsement of Bernie a tactical move?

Our endorsement of Bernie Sanders in the Oklahoma Democratic Primary accomplishes two goals: 1.) to find a way to participate electorally given our state’s repressive ballot access laws, and b.) to build a base to strengthen our efforts to reform those ballot access laws.

  1. Why endorse him now?

The Oklahoma Democratic Party recently decided to allow Independent voters to participate in their primaries. Because we cannot register to vote as Green Party members, many are registered as Independents. We want to encourage them to use their electoral power in the Democratic primary to support the candidate that aligns most with Green Party values. We believe Bernie Sanders represents the best chance for Oklahoma Greens to do that, given the current lack of ballot access.

  1. How will this endorsement help the Green Party of Oklahoma?

We hope it will bring attention to our ballot access situation among progressive and leftist voters in Oklahoma. Because of it’s relative obscurity compared to other social justice issues, ballot access is a difficult issue around which to mobilize. We are hoping that we can sustain the support we gain from Sanders supporters in our state and fold it into our ballot access reform efforts.

Read the rest of the interview here. 

Gary Johnson: Trump Policies Are ‘Fascist,’

From Fred Lucas at The Blaze, March 3rd:

NATIONAL HARBOR, Md. – Former New Mexico Gov. Gary Johnson, a Libertarian Party presidential candidate, called the policies advocated by Republican presidential front-runner Donald Trump “fascist” and hopes to be the alternative conservatives are looking for in November.

Gov. Gary Johnson, former Governor of NM, speaks at the American Conservative Union's CPAC conference at National Harbor in Oxon Hill, Md., on Thursday, March 3, 2016. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Trump is no small-government conservative, Johnson, a former Republican, said.

“He’s not free trade. He’s about government control. He talks expanding libel. It’s fascist,” Johnson told TheBlaze in an interview. “It’s an erosion of the fundamental principles this country was founded on. It’s why we fought wars.”

When asked, Johnson stopped short of actually calling Trump a fascist.

“He would be president of the United States. He’s not going to be a dictator,” Johnson said after addressing the Conservative Political Action Conference. “And yet he talks about this very much from the standpoint of being a dictator, and the things he talks about is more government control not less.”

Read the rest of the article here. 

Press release: Libertarian presidential debate to air on Stossel Show in April

For Immediate Release

Thursday, March 3, 2016

The first 2016 nationally televised presidential debate of Libertarian candidates will be filmed on March 29 and air on Fox Business Network’s Stossel Show April 1.

The nation’s third largest political party, Libertarians represent a growing plurality of Americans who are neither “left” nor “right” but who lean libertarian on issues from foreign intervention to marijuana to balancing the federal budget.

“A nationally televised debate of Libertarian presidential candidates is long overdue, and we are delighted that it is finally happening,” said LP Chair, Nicholas Sarwark.

“We urge all Americans to tell their friends, co-workers, and family to watch this important debate and see they have a choice,” he said. “They do not have to settle for candidates who are bigoted and insulting; who curry favor with the titans of Wall Street; who put our troops in harm’s way; who have no intention of stopping runaway government spending; and who force Americans to buy lousy yet unaffordable insurance plans.”

The Libertarian National Committee and Our America Initiative are currently suing the Commission on Presidential Debates for inclusion in debates this fall that are based on reasonable and objective criteria. Specifically, if a candidate is on the ballot in enough states to potentially receive enough electoral votes to win the presidency, he or she should be included.

The Libertarian Party is expected to be on the ballot in most, if not all, 50 states plus the District of Columbia.

“The Commission is a case of insider trading because it is controlled by the Republican and Democratic parties,” said Wes Benedit, LP Executive Director. “They’re scared to have our Libertarian nominee on the stage debating theirs.”

A limited number of free tickets are available. To request them, email .

Source: LP.org

Sedinam Kinamo Christin Moyowasifza-Curry campaigns in Maine

Sedinam Kinamo Christin Moyowasifza-Curry

Green Party Watch, March 4th: 

Maine’s Biddeford Courier interviews Green Party presidential candidate Sedinam Kinamo Christin Moyowasifza-Curry, who is campaigning in Maine in advance of Green Party caucuses there. The newspaper says Moyowasifza-Curry was “the first presidential candidate to visit a caucus in Maine this year.”

Moyowasifza-Curry said she “became a Green to bring diversity to the party and to help broaden its appeal.” She said, “White privilege exists in our party. I looked around to find what party had values similar to mine and it was the Green Party. The only thing it didn’t have was people of color.”

She said her time spent living in Ghana changed her perspective. Moyowasifza-Curry said, “Being there made me a better American because I saw the impact of our polices that was hurting them. You all know we cannot sustain what we have right now. … I think we have enough heart and brain to sustain our species despite our stupidity.”

Jill Stein speaks at University of Illinois

mass-doctor-wins-green-party-presidential-nod-sh1s478t-x-large

Jill Stein

Green Party Watch, March 4th: 

The University of Illinois Daily Illini reports on Green Party presidential candidate Jill Stein’s Wednesday night speech at the university.

Stein, “the Green Party’s leading candidate for the 2016 presidential election,” is “the only presidential candidate to visit the University this election cycle.” She said “she believes is that massive changes need to be made to America to make the world a better place.”

Stein said, “We need really deep systemic change. And a different way forward based on democracy, justice, and human rights, and a different kind of world that puts people, planet and peace over profit, instead of profit over everything else.”

Her speech “primarily focused on the issue of student loan debt. She pointed out that 43 million Americans are tied down by their student loans; in order to pay them off, many graduates need to work longer hours, giving them less time to pay attention to politics. Stein said it was crucial for these people to get out and vote in 2016.”