My Endorsement for President

Dear Friends,

In 1992, Bill Clinton ushered in the era of the New Democrat. We were told that traditional Democrats couldn’t be elected, that candidates had to run as “centrists” to win.

It soon became clear that “centrist” meant “corporate,” as Clinton and the New Democrats brought us NAFTA, the gutting of Glass Steagall, the Telecommunications Act, welfare reform and a slew of other policies most Democrats (and most Americans) oppose.Sanders

The New Democrats have dominated the Democratic Party for two-and-a-half decades. Meanwhile, the rich grow richer, the poor and middle class struggle more and more, and the vast majority of Americans believe our politicians and government have failed them.

Well, I say, “Take heart!” We are on the cusp of a transformation of historic significance. At the Iowa Caucuses on Monday, if Iowa Democrats set the tone for the nation and choose Bernie Sanders as their nominee for President, the era of the New Democrats will be over.

What will take it’s place? A new era that puts human need above corporate greed. An era in which people power again prevails over corporate power. An era that future generations will say resembled the progressive populism and forward thinking of the FDR years.

Barrack Obama asked us to believe in hope and change. Bernie Sanders asks us to be part of a revolution – a peaceful, non-violent revolution that moves America away from government by the billionaires and for the billionaires, toward a government we can again be proud of.

In your heart, you know we need such a revolution. And in your heart, you know Hillary Clinton is not going to lead it. She is too tied to Wall Street and corporate money. Beyond this, she is wrong on many of the key issues (Glass-Steagall, livable wage, the Patriot Act, single-payer healthcare) and slow to come on board others (Keystone pipeline, Iraq War, Trans Pacific Partnership).

When I first ran for the Iowa House in 1992, I refused large donations from individuals and money from PACs. As a lawmaker over the next 14 years, and as a candidate for Iowa Governor and US Congress, I maintained my refusal to accept PAC money and large donations. Without a doubt, that was the best political decision I ever made, as it provided me the independence to represent my constituents first and foremost, to the best of my ability.

In the realm of money in politics, Sanders and I are fellow travelers. The fact that Sanders operates with the highest scruples in how he finances his campaign assures us that he hasn’t been and won’t be swayed by Wall Street or big money.

And the fact that his average donation is just over $30 from over 2 1/2 million everyday Americans says volumes about who he represents.

If you are inclined to believe Sanders can’t win in November, think again. Poll after poll show Sanders beating Trump, Cruz and other Republicans by a greater margin than Clinton.

“But that doesn’t make sense,” the New Democrat moans. “You have to be a ‘centrist’ to win.”

Ah, sorry friend. Those days are over. The polls also speak to this, as the issues of most importance to young voters are a veritable mirror image of the issues Sanders has championed all his life.

Sanders’ record-breaking crowds speak to this.

Sanders winning 69% of the vote in Friday’s Climate Emergency Caucus speaks to this.

Folks, a new political age is upon us. Embrace it. Be part of it. Help usher it in by caucusing for Bernie Sanders.

Thank you! – Ed Fallon

 

 

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Who’s Your Climate Candidate?

Dear Friends,

I write with an urgent reminder about tomorrow’s Climate Emergency Caucus. Why urgent?

– Because if humanity stands a fighting chance of reining in the escalating impacts of climate change, we must heed scientists and act IMMEDIATELY!

– Because in defense of both our environment and personal liberty, we must stop the Bakken Oil Pipeline and the accompanying abuse of eminent domain.

Climate Emergency Caucus, Friday, January 29, 7:00-8:30 p.m. at Central Campus, 1800 Grand Ave in Des Moines

What happens next Monday at the Iowa Caucuses is extremely important. It will influence the direction of our country and the world for years to come. And what we do tomorrow at the Climate Emergency Caucus is a critical contributor to that direction – providing YOU help make it happen.

So, I ask you in the strongest possible terms to join me and hundreds more tomorrow. Send a strong message that will resonate beyond Iowa, telling America and the world:

– Which presidential candidate can best lead America in the fight against climate change; and

– Which presidential candidate is most committed to stopping corporations from taking land to build oil and gas pipelines.

Our keynote speakers are Jane Kleeb of Bold Nebraska (right) and former U.S. Senator Tom Harkin (above left). We’ll also hear from the inspiring young leaders of The Climate Mobilization, Ezra Silk and Margaret Klein Salamon. We’ll discuss caucus resolutions, hear where the Democratic and Republican candidates stand, and break into preference groups – just like you’ll do on Monday at the actual Iowa Caucus – to show your support for the candidate YOU feel is best equipped to lead the all-out mobilization we so urgently need.

Arrive early and check out the literature and displays provided by our sponsors and allies (listed below). And we’d love to have you join us for a group photo sporting Climate Mobilization t-shirts and Rosie the Riveter bandanas.

Also, check-out our Facebook Page: Climate Emergency Caucus. Don’t hesitate to contact me if you have any questions, or if you’d like to volunteer. Thank you!

Ed Fallon
SPONSORS
100 Grannies for a Livable Future
American Friends Service Committee
Be A Climate Voter
Bold
Charles D. Goldman, MD
Des Moines Family Psychiatrist Dr. David Drake
Earth Made Clean
Green Light Renewable Services
I’m a Climate Voter
Integrated Power / ISETA
Iowa Citizens For Community Improvement
Iowa Physicians for Social Responsibility
Koch Brothers (a local family-owned printing company)
Methodist Federation for Social Action (Iowa Chapter)
Silent Rivers Design+Build
Story County Veterinary Clinic
Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom (Des Moines Branch)

ALLIES
Citizens’ Climate Lobby (Des Moines)
Greenpeace USA
Iowa 350.org
Iowa Peace Network
Sierra Club (Iowa Chapter)

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Caucus for the Climate!

Dear Friends,

On Saturday, for what it’s worth, I’ll announce my presidential candidate endorsement. Hey, I’ve got a better batting average than The Des Moines Register! But first . . .

SIXTEEN HUNDRED! That’s the number of credentialed media outlets converging on Iowa this week!(Who knows how many non-credentialed types are here or on their way.) The media love a good horse race, and the close competition in both the Democratic and Republican campaigns makes being in Iowa this week like reporting on the Kentucky Derby and Breeders Cup without ever having to move your camera crew.

Yup. February 1st is a big day. Not just for Iowa. For our country. For our Planet. I hope every Iowan participates in this important piece of local and world history.

And because of the urgency of fighting climate change and stopping oil pipelines, I hope you’ll give the national and international media something to talk about by attending the Climate Emergency Caucus on January 29th.

I know I ask much from my friends, co-workers and all who share a vision for a more just and livable future. But I always demand as much or more from myself.

Organizing the Climate Emergency Caucus has been an enormous undertaking. My coworker, Shari, and I are burning the candle at both ends to pull it together. It would be a great honor to us – and a significant moment for efforts to advance climate action – if you’ll join us on Friday, January 29th, 7:00-9:00 p.m. at the Des Moines Public Schools Central Campus Auditorium, 1800 Grand Ave, Des Moines.

If you use Facebook, please register your attendance on the Climate Emergency Caucus Facebook Event Page. And please share that page with your friends, family and neighbors.

On the 29th, we’ll hear from Ezra Silk and Margaret Klein Salamon with The Climate Mobilization. We’ll also hear from Jane Kleeb, whose instrumental role in stopping the Keystone Pipeline led Rolling Stone to dub her “Keystone Killer.” We’ll entertain statements from presidential candidates on climate and pipelines. We’ll discuss resolutions you can bring to your caucus. And the main event: We’ll break into preference groups to determine which candidate(s) we feel can best lead America forward to fight climate change.

So, one more time: PLEASE COME! This is little Iowa’s chance to launch a shot-heard-round-the-world moment on the very survival of humanity.

*******

On today’s Fallon Forum, Jeffrey Weiss joins us for an analysis of what the presidential candidates are saying on foreign policy. Has rhetoric from some Republican candidates essentially bound them to commit war crimes, if elected? And on the Democratic side, beyond what she says on the campaign trail, what does Hillary Clinton’s track record as a US Senator and US Secretary of State suggest about her approach to foreign policy, should she be elected President?

We also talk with Mark Weisbrot, author of Failed: What the “Experts” Got Wrong about the Global Economywhich deals with the European struggle against austerity, failings of the International Monetary Fund, and the dangers of the proposed Trans Pacific Partnership.

Listen to the Fallon Forum live Mondays, 11:00-12:00 noon CST on La Reina KDLF 1260 AM (Des Moines) and online. Call (515) 528-8122 to add your voice to the conversation. The program re-broadcasts Wednesday on KHOI 89.1 FM (Ames) at 4:00 p.m. and Monday at 6:00 a.m. on WHIV 102.3 FM (New Orleans). Check-out podcasts from this week’s Fallon Forum here.

Thanks! – Ed Fallon

*******

A shout-out and gracious “THANK YOU!” to the local businesses and non-profits helping to make the Climate Emergency Caucus possible:

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Keystone Killer Keynotes Climate Caucus

Dear Friends,

Jane Kleeb on the cover of July/August 2015 Omaha Magazine

Jane Kleeb on the cover of July/August 2015 Omaha Magazine

* Check out today’s press release – Keystone Fighter to Keynote Climate Emergency Caucus – and share it as far and wide as your cyber-arm can toss. We are very excited to confirm that Jane Kleeb, dubbed by Rolling Stone as the Keystone Killer, will headline the event.

* Let’s take another stab at convincing our lawmakers to enact stronger laws limiting the abuse of eminent domain. Come to the Take Back Iowa Rally and Lobby Day at the State Capitol on Thursday, January 21 from 1:00-4:00.

* Climate scientists are afraid to tell you about the frightening and demonstrable link between accordions, chickens and global warming. My co-worker, Shari Hrdina, and I rose to the challenge to prove this link in a 1:27 video that took us all of 45 minutes to throw together. Take that, scientists!

* On an entirely serious note, EARTH NEEDS YOU AT THE CLIMATE MOBILIZATION’S CLIMATE EMERGENCY CAUCUS on Friday, January 29, 7:00-9:00 p.m. at Central Campus in Des Moines. And I’m excited as a snake chasing a three-legged mouse that we’ve confirmed a nationally-known speaker. Register for the event on the Climate Emergency Caucus Facebook page.

* The most recent Democratic debate was a win for . . . Martin O’Malley. Yup. Despite NBC short-changing him on time (Sanders got 28:07, Clinton 27:35 and O’Malley 13:58), O’Malley comported himself with dignity and offered compelling responses. Sure, he will hardly register a blip when Caucus results are reported on February 1st. But O’Malley has positioned himself to be a top-tier candidate for President in 2020 or 2024.

* Speaking of media bias . . . throughout the presidential campaign, Bernie Sanders has received a pittance of coverage compared with the corporate media’s non-stop salivation over the bloviated babble of Donald Trump — by a factor of 23 to 1! Check out John Nichols story in The Nation.

* On M.L. King Day, I learned of the deadly water contamination afflicting residents of Flint, Michigan — 40% of whom live in poverty, 65% of whom are minorities. Economic hard times created a budget crisis for the City, so the State of Michigan took over and required cost-cutting measures, including switching the City’s water source to the Flint River. People, pets and even plants are now sick or dying. There’s more to this story, and as we remember Dr. King and the ongoing struggle for equality and justice, we have to ask ourselves if what happened in Flint would have been allowed to happen in an affluent, white community.

* A shout-out and gracious “THANK YOU!” to the local businesses and non-profits helping to make the Climate Emergency Caucus possible:

Check-out podcasts from this week’s Fallon Forum here. Listen to the Fallon Forum live Mondays, 11:00-12:00 noon CST on La Reina KDLF 1260 AM (Des Moines) and online. Call (515) 528-8122 to add your voice to the conversation. The program re-broadcasts Wednesday on KHOI 89.1 FM (Ames) at 4:00 p.m. and Monday at 6:00 a.m. on WHIV 102.3 FM (New Orleans).

Thanks! – Ed Fallon

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Thank Clinton (Bill) for TransCanada lawsuit

Dear Friends,

Here’s a political jaw dropper – and no, it didn’t come out of the mouth of The Donald. TransCanada is suing American taxpayers for $15 billion because President Obama ix-nayed the Keystone Pipeline! For real, TransCanada? You want to us to pay you because your business venture flopped? Bold Nebraska’s Jane Kleeb has been been on the front lines fighting to stop the Keystone Pipeline, and she joins Dr. Charles Goldman and me today on the Forum.

My take on TransCanada’s lawsuit? Blame Bill Clinton. That’s right. Sorry, Clinton lovers, but a big part of Clinton’s legacy as President was passage of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). TransCanada sites provisions in NAFTA as the foundation for its lawsuit. So, next time you see Bill campaigning for Hillary, be sure to thank him for NAFTA, which opened the door to a string of union-gutting, environmental-law trashing, national-sovreingty negating treaties that have made corporations the defacto rulers of the world.

And if you like NAFTA, you’ll love the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) – the mother of all trade treaties. And don’t forget that Hillary Clinton was singing all kinds of praise for TPP until she just recently changed her position. To their credit, Martin O’Malley and Bernie Sanders have long opposed TPP.

One more thought on TransCanada and the Keystone Pipeline. It seems we’re having more conflicts with our northern neighbor lately than with our neighbor to the south. If Donald Trump is so intent on protecting America from harmful foreign influences, maybe that big wall he wants to build should stretch across our northern border instead.

And let’s get TransCanada to pay for it.

Speaking of Trump, every week I pray to a higher power to grant me the strength to not talk about Donald Trump on the Forum. And nearly every week, my petitions fail to reach the metaphysical ears of that higher power, as they are no doubt trapped in Earth’s atmosphere by an ever-expanding belt of greenhouse gases.

So, Trump talk it is, at least for a segment of today’s program. Here’s Charles input on The Donald:

“Trump just confirms for us that, for the most part, America’s billionaire ruling class is scarily and pathologically narcissistic. As Bernie Sanders points out at almost every opportunity, the system is rigged for the highest earning 1/1000th of Americans. And it is far worse than the issues Sanders usually concentrates on, whether the income tax system is progressive enough or the ceiling on Social Security earnings should be lifted. On today’s program, we look at some of the other ways that the wealthiest Americans enrich themselves via the loopholes written into the IRS tax code.”

Hear the Fallon Forum live 11:00-12:00 noon CST on KDLF 1260 AM (Des Moines) and online. Call (515) 528-8122 to add your voice to the conversation. The program re-broadcasts Wednesday on KHOI 89.1 FM (Ames) at 4:00 p.m. and Monday at 6:00 a.m. on WHIV 102.3 FM (New Orleans).

Thanks! – Ed Fallon

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Climate Emergency Caucus

Dear Friends,

Climate change and the Bakken Pipeline have been second-tier conversations in the presidential campaign. We’ve got three weeks to change that, and with your help, it can happen. See below. Spread the word. And mark your calendars for Friday, January 29, 7:00-9:00 p.m.

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

9 a.m. CDT, Wednesday, January 6th, 2016

Contact:
Ed Fallon at (515) 238-6404 or fallonforum@gmail.com
Margaret Klein Salamon at (734) 476-5169 or Margaret@TheClimateMobilization.org

Hundreds Expected at Climate Emergency Caucus 
Presidential Candidates Will be Chosen to Stop Bakken Pipeline and
Lead WWII-scale Mobilization to Restore a Safe Climate 

DES MOINES — Caucus-goers from across Iowa will stage a model caucus Friday, Jan. 29 to support the presidential candidate they believe is most committed to stopping the Bakken Pipeline and leading a full-employment, wartime-scale mobilization to retire all fossil fuel infrastructure, drive the U.S. economy to net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2025, and restore a safe climate for humanity. The caucus will take place from 7:00 – 9:00 p.m. in the auditorium of Central Campus at 1800 Grand Avenue in Des Moines.

“Iowa climate and pipeline fighters are all over the board when it comes to the presidential candidate they prefer,” said Ed Fallon, a talk show host and former Iowa lawmaker. “The Climate Emergency Caucus lets voters choose the strongest climate champion among those running for President. And each candidate – Republican and Democratic – will have a chance to make their case to voters in attendance that they intend to respond to the climate crisis with heroic action, not business-as-usual reform proposals that cannot effectively tackle this time-sensitive, existential emergency.”

The model caucus is organized by The Climate Mobilization in conjunction with a growing list of business and organizational partners. The model caucus portion of the event invites attendees to stand up for the candidate they feel is best able to lead the nation in this time of growing crisis.

“The climate crisis is a national and international emergency the next President will have to confront,” said Margaret Klein Salamon, founder and director of The Climate Mobilization. “Which candidate has the character, wisdom and experience to lead the mobilization we need? Which candidate has been the most candid on the climate crisis thus far? We offer caucus-goers a chance to deliberate on these questions, while making it clear we will not settle for half measures that ignore the dire realities of climate science.”

The program for the evening also includes presentations by one or more nationally-known climate leaders, remarks by The Climate Mobilization’s founders, Klein Salamon and Ezra Silk, and a call to further action in the lead-up to the February 1st Iowa Caucuses.

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