August 1, 2005 at 11:37 am #6725
Just click on http://ga4.org/healthfreedom/home and click on one of the buttons on the bottom. Fill out your info once, and then go back and click on all the buttons.
From: firstname.lastname@example.org [mailto:email@example.com] On Behalf Of Mitchell Rabin
Sent: Friday, July 29, 2005 10:03 PM
To: Rosinke, Plato
Subject: CAFTA follow up
Follow-up with CAFTA
The vote took place, and when it was over, CAFTA was voted down by 5 votes. Yes, down. We won. However, in the first appearance on Capitol Hill in years, Bush appeared in the last hour and campaigned heavily to bring a number of Republicans who were voting against it (and indeed there were a number), and brought them around, by what means we may never know. Dick Cheney had set up shop in the corridors and had been campaigning heavily for hours. Cabinet members were strolling, or as Lori Wallach of Public Citizen stated, trolling in the halls, doing everything in their power to turn the vote in the direction of the Administration.
We do have to ask: why is the Administration so hell-bent on a legislation that will take so many jobs away from Americans? That will hurt farmers here and in Central America who are just holding on by their fingertips? That will bar generic drug manufacturers from the testing and research data already conducted by the multi-billion-dollar pharmaceuticals, driving them nearly out of business? These companies make the only drugs many people can afford, including so many said to have AIDS/HIV* (*this comment contains certain presumptions I dont necessarily subscribe to due to the issues I have with the medical model, testing procedures, etc. Nonetheless, most people do accept it and it is therefore important to many). And, as said before, CAFTA, in effect, controls CODEX. CAFTA basically reinforces the model of NAFTA, and a no vote would suggest that NAFTA (too) was a mistake, as we have seen in many instances. One of the provisions of CAFTA is that all basic services, such as electricity and water, be taken out of the hands of the public sectors of Central American countries and privatized. Some of you know when that happened in Bolivia. It was purely a set-up for Bechtel to go in and monopolize the countrys water, charging the poor people for every drop they received. This led to a rebellion, people were hurt, some died, yet ultimately the people prevailed upon their government to kick Bechtel out of the country, and abandon this doomed project.. This is the kind of free trade activity you can look forward to if CAFTAs vote remains unchallenged by us. If the U.S. keeps perpetrating this kind of free trade, backed as it is by the largest trans-national corporations in the world, not only will the government be despised, so will also we, the people who allow it to run wantonly out of control. When in question, this administration seeks to take away rights and freedom, what were about. We are witnessing the demise of our Democracy.
But no, not yet! We can still possibly turn this around in the last hour, both the CAFTA vote, and God knows, perhaps even our Democracy! As for CAFTA, the vote, after closing at around 11:30 pm, was then re-opened by the Republican leadership (what??) and extended, perhaps illegally, but certainly unethically, for another 47 minutes, during which time Bush, Cheney, et al made the rounds one more forceful time, intermingling with a separate branch of government But the issue is that the vote was already closed, done. Yet, because the Republicans control the House, they opened it up again after the vote was counted and closed. Its as if you played a ballgame, lost and didnt like the outcome, so you added an inning. You cant do that! Additionally, there was a vote from a North Carolina Rep., Charles Taylor, that was miscalculated by the electronic voting machine (oops!) He voted no, but this was not registered. But by then, as I heard the story, the doors were (again) closed, after the vote was in favor of CAFTA.
My point is that there are, serious problems with this vote, the procedure and its proper recording. If the vote was equal (and it was off only by two votes) CAFTA loses. With just Taylors vote properly counted, the scales are tipped. With the vote being respected as it should be, before re-opening the vote because the Administration didnt like the outcome after it was complete, CAFTA would have lost. It did lose. It was unethically re-opened in what was called some of the worst political horse-trading recent history has seen. Please realize that even if youre Republican do know that many Republicans broke with the party line and the White House, and vehemently opposed CAFTA. They see how it spells disaster for the working families and farmers in this country, let alone others. They see that its just another private deal for big business at the expense of the U.S.and Central American people, and they just cannot stomach it anymore. This is not a partisan issue. Its a Big Business-beehive issue.
Whats the point? The point is that this voting procedure is not acceptable in a Democracy, supposedly the flagship Democracy in the world. Youre not allowed to add an inning. Youre not allowed to make an electronic mistake and not correct it. And it is us, again, that must enforce this to our incredible leaders in Washington. It is up to us to campaign, again, even heavier, right now, because it is alive right now and can be, must be, kept alive, to correct this travesty of Democracy. Yet Scott McClellan says CAFTA protects Democracy. The spin is incredible. This is from the man who said just a few months back, that it is ridiculous to think that an American like Carl Rove would out CIA undercover agent, Valerie Plame. Scott has been eating many of his words.
Taking Action Again
Again, the outpouring to our reps. is of utmost importance. It is us who have the power. I know that were all working like mad to stay abreast of the cost of living and all that, I know that were under serious stress in so many ways at this point in time, but part of the stress is our feeling disempowered, taken advantage of by our own government. We can turn this around. We can turn this around. Take 10 minutes each day, even every other day, to manage your country. Let your views be loudly heard through the corridors of Washington so that it bellows and echoes. This is what makes this country great, this is what all the bickering is about. This is why it is the First Amendment. This is why so many men and women, and boys and girls, have lost their livesit was in the name of this right. Lets use it. Or yes, we lose it. I will send out an audio clip next week that states the facts of what happened at this vote.
To get the contact info. of your reps:
http://ga4.org/healthfreedom/home Call, fax, email. They must be barraged by all of us.
Global Trade Watch of Public Citizen with Lori Wallach
CURRENT POLL OF CONGRESSIONAL CAFTA VOTES –
We must come together immediately as a group of concerned citizens & exercise our God-given rights to have the lives we want. Its hanging in the balance.
In the name of Freedom, Justice & Liberty for all,
Mitchell J. Rabin
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