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Wednesday, March 08, 2006

The Vermont Way

During yesterday's day of democracy, Town Meeting Day (for which I had off from work), five Vermont communities passed resolutions requesting the state's representative to the US House to file articles of impeachment against the president, alleging Bush misled the country about Iraq and engaged in illegal domestic spying. Of the five communities, only one has a population over 2,00: Newfane (1,680), Dummerston (1,915), Brookfield (1,222), Marlboro (978), and Putney (2,634), but the symbolic votes were resounding, as in Newfane's 121-29.

If it hadn't happened already, Vermont can now take it's position next to those crazy liberals in California.

Five Vermont towns endorse move to impeach the president (Boston Globe)
Brookfield votes to impeach the president (Times Argus)

The Mountain Goats - The Boys are Back in Town.mp3 (Thin Lizzy Cover with R. Kelly Ignition breakdown) Link Removed


  • At 3:07 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    With all the BS going on in the US and the world you would think politicians in VT would have better things to do than this impeachment lunacy. Pure idiocy trying to force some type of impeachment over a war that a MAJORITY of leaders in both parties supported, until things started to go south.

  • At 4:16 PM, Anonymous Sarah said…

    Just wanted to thank you for that great Mountain Goats link. That's the best cover I've heard since The Gourds did Snoop Doggy Dog's Gin n' Juice.

  • At 4:31 PM, Blogger jds said…

    The majority of leaders in OTHER states supported the war. All three of Vermont's US Legislators voted against the Iraq invasion. Town Meeting Day is the purest form of grass roots democracy in the US. Democracy only works if people participate. In this instance the majority of the population of 5 small towns stood up asked their representative to make the president accountable. Without accountability and justice democracy doesn't work. Not acting to keep democracy alive is lunacy and pure idiocy.

    But let's not forget, this is purely symbolic. 5 out of Vermont's 251 municipalities had this resolution on the ballot - an extremely small minority.

  • At 4:57 PM, Blogger jds said…

    More info on last year's Town Meeting Day concerning Iraq: Iraq War Lands in the Midst of Vermont's Town Hall Meetings
    Vermont Votes No to War

  • At 10:44 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Vermont is part of the United States so it does matter that a majority of leaders supported the war.

    How are they holding the President accountable? Because they don't like the idea of the war he should be impeached? It is idiocy and an abuse of the system to say that because intelligence was wrong the President should be impeached. This move is purely political. I for one feel that Iraq had WMDs and somehow hid them or got rid of them before we arrived.

    Maybe a better idea would have been for those 5 towns to push for Bernard Sanders to ask for an up or down vote on removing the troops from Iraq now. Then let the politicians put their money where their mouth is.

    I agree with you that Democracy only works with accountability, but it doesn't apply in this instance. Numerous leaders from both parties voted for the war so unless you hold them all accountable to the same standard, you are picking on the President because you don't like him politically.

  • At 11:15 AM, Anonymous verplanck colvin said…

    A better case of impeachment can be made for Bush's open and blatant violation of the FISA act. He wiretapped Americans without the use of the FISA courts' warrants, which is illegal.

    I know the war stirs peoples' passions more, but the FISA violation is a black-and-white case for impeachment.

  • At 11:44 AM, Blogger jds said…

    Here is the ballot measure that was passed in Newfane:

    Whereas George W. Bush has: 1. Misled the nation about Iraq's weapons of mass destruction; 2. Misled the nation about ties between Iraq and al-Qaida; 3. Used these falsehoods to lead our nation into war unsupported by international law; 4. Not told the truth about American policy with respect to the use of torture; and 5. Has directed the government to engage in domestic spying, in direct contravention of U.S. law. Therefore, the voters of the town of Newfane ask that our representative to the U.S. House of Representatives file articles of impeachment to remove him from office.

    Numerous leaders from both parties voted for the war so unless you hold them all accountable to the same standard, you are picking on the President because you don't like him politically.

    Let's please be specific here. Firstly, "I" am not picking on anyone. I'm mearly attempting to bring clarity.

    Secondly, we live in a representative democracy. The population of Vermont do not and should not have a mechanism to hold other leaders from other states accountable. The only individuals in the federal government that Vermonters have influence over are the three representatives in the legislature and the President (and only the president through the election process every four years). By voting for this resolution, the five towns are influencing this issue in the only manner that they have available to them.

    One of the reasons that the war has become such a large issue in Vermont is because of the high percentage of the population serving - 200 of the state's 251 towns have residents who have been called up to serve in Iraq. Vermont has traditionally had a high level of participation in the National Guard. With Guard units being so heavily used in the Iraq, several studies have show that Vermont has suffered the highest per capita death toll of any state since the war began.

  • At 11:57 AM, Blogger K. said…

    Special bit of love for you ANON you might find this enjoyable.

    The Case for Impeachment, by Lewis H. Lapham. An excerpt from an essay in the March 2006 Harper's Magazine. (February 27).

    Goes a bit deeper than just WMDs AS THE RESOLUTION CLEARLY STATED. Just cause these towns voted on impeachment doesn't mean that impeachment proceeding are going to take place. Its merely a symbolic act stated by a small minority of towns. With the climate in washington dc (read heavy reb. majority) this doesn't really mean shit for anyone outside of Vermont.

    Would be sure GW probably doesn't even know/care that this went down. Post was simply factual information.

  • At 2:37 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    JDS I wasn't using the "you" in terms of you personally. I meant "you" in terms of people that are pushing Impeachment. Sorry to offend. I

    Verplank you said "FISA violation is a black-and-white case for impeachment."

    That is your opinion. It isn't a black-and-white case. Clinton allowed physical searches of peoples' property without a warrant.

    It isn't like Bush is sitting in a room by himself deciding what to do, he has a team of competent lawyers who obviously think he has the legal authority or he wouldn't do it.

    Maybe it is illegal, but it hasn't been proven. I hope someone takes it to court so we find out, but to say it is black & white illegal is innacurate at this point.

    Tom Daschle and other Democrat leaders were briefed and told when the wiretaps were being used and never complained once, until the NY Times article came out, and then it was just "cover your ass."

    It wasn't like the gov't was randomly listening to calls between Americans, or even Americans and those overseas. THe conversations listened to was with targets that were determined to be security risks for the US. This entire situation has just gotten blown completely overboard.

    There is plenty to disagree with the President about and things he has done poorly. I just think impeachment talk is a total waste of time. The left should work on a strategy to take advantage of these issues in November, which will be hard since Howard Dean is pissing all their money away.

  • At 3:18 PM, Blogger Flatlander said…

    It's not a waste of time. It's not going to amount to anything but that doesn't make it a waste of time. People are frustrated by this administration and recent events. Voting for this resolution makes people feel they are doing something to make their voices heard. And being heard feels good. It relieves a bit of that frustration.

    Don't worry. Your boy, Bush, isn't going to be impeached. But perhaps voters will kick their dogs in frustration a little less often because they got the world to hear that they think Bush is a hideous president.

  • At 4:02 PM, Anonymous fauxkeero said…

    Maybe it is illegal, but it hasn't been proven. I hope someone takes it to court so we find out

    Thats the purpose of impeachment - "to bring a public official(s) before a proper tribunal on a charge of wrongdoing." Impeachment only initiates a legal review, not the actual removal from office.

  • At 5:33 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    That is ridiculous Fauxkeero. The Senate isn't a court of law and shouldn't be determining outcomes of law.

  • At 5:48 PM, Blogger K. said…

    "We are fully prepared."
    -GW Bush in video footage recorded the day before Katrina hit and released last week, after a briefing of state and federal officials in which Max Mayfield direction of the National Hurricane Center warned of Katrina's disastrous potential.

    "Simply stated, there is no doubt that Saddam Hussein now has weapons of mass destruction."
    -Dick Cheney August 26, 2002

    "Our intelligence officials estimate that Saddam Hussein had the materials to produce as much as 500 tons of sarin, mustard and VX nerve agent."
    -George W. Bush January 28, 2003

    "Intelligence gathered by this and other governments leaves no doubt that the Iraq regime continues to possess and conceal some of the most lethal weapons ever devised."
    -George W. Bush, March 17, 2003

    Lets just say that those "things he has done poorly" you speak of are some pretty BIG things.

    He has lied and his lies have killed many Americans.

    Estimated 1420 in Katrina Disaster.
    33,489 civilians in Iraq.
    2,512 coalition deaths, 2,307 Americans.

    Hope those weapons that you "feel that Iraq had WMDs and somehow hid them or got rid of them before we arrived." Was worth it.

    To me? Human life is more precious and the beginning of impeachment proceedings is the least that should happen.

    Republicans are in charge of all branches of government. Sure there are democrat enablers but this is the Republicans problem they have the power.

  • At 6:18 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    K, what a bunch of utter horseshit. Sure give the democrats a free pass and blame it all on the GOP so you can sleep better at night. I am very critical of Bush but I am not going to pile on him and give everyone else a free pass. Democrats are far more than enablers.

    By all means blame the 1420 Katrina deaths on Bush. That is great. It had nothing to do with the Governor of LA and mayor of New Orleans and a hundred of other local (democrat) officials who didn't have any busses ready to remove those who had no transportation. If anything New Orleans should show you what happens when people are put on welfare and generations of families live in the same poor house for years and become completely reliant on a government that is to bureaucratic and too slow to help them. All levels of gov't failed them, the least of all which is the federal level.

    You are too much. I guess we shouldn't have gone to Iraq and then Saddam could have ignored another decade of UN resolutions and of course then Al-Qaeda would have never attacked up because we definitely provoked them before 9/11. Oh wait.

    I bet you find life precious. But I bet your pro-choice too aren't you?

    Also noticed in your WMD quotes you forgot the quotes from Bill Clinton, Hillary Clinton, Ted Kennedy, John Kerry, John Edwards, Al Gore, etc. How convenient.

  • At 7:27 PM, Blogger K. said…

    Ohh this is real rich.

    We can post all the quotes about Clinton, Kennedy, Edwards and Kerry you want. They are in the minority they are not the people in charge. They are enablers I acknowledged that. (NOTE: I am no fan of the democrats trust me.)

    Republicans are in charge are you disputing that? are you saying that the minority party is equally to blame as the majority party? So you would blame the bombing of a Sudan medicine factory under the Clinton administration equally on the shoulders say Trent Lott? I wouldn't.

    Just seems a bit insulting how you are easy to dismiss oversights like katrina, no weapons of mass destruction, and nsa spying.

    You are putting words in my mouth by stating that I gave the dems a "free pass." The discussion was about impeachment of the PRESIDENT.

    "I guess we shouldn't have gone to Iraq and then Saddam could have ignored another decade of UN resolutions and of course then Al-Qaeda would have never attacked up because we definitely provoked them before 9/11."

    Did you miss the fact that there were no weapons? Did you miss that there is NO-ZERO connection between Al-Qaeda and Iraq? Was Sadam's ignoring the UN resolutions killing thousands of Americans and civilians? We learned that fear of WMD's was not there (aside from your belief that they were moved and kept secret from the most power and technically advanced army KNOW TO MAN).

    Did you miss the fact that the presence of Christians on Muslim holy land was what made Al-Qaeda mad? They might have been angry that we used their country as a war zone to fight "communism" utterly trashing their country by throwing it into decades of war. The whole thing were we tried to kill Osama with cruise missles in 1998 might have made him a bit angry as well.

    The fact that the Bush administration CUT FEMA funding (thats Federal Emergency Management Agency) and took it out as a MAJOR cabinet level position is the fault of the poor how? It was the poors fault that the Administration and FEMA ignored warnings and statements that the levee was broken? Since they are poor and on welfare they deserve to die..yeah that makes sense. Sure its all levels of government's fault, BUT the federal government has the most resources and can allocate the most money, aid etc. so they are the one ultimately responsible. They are the one who should bear the greatest burden.

    If you don't want to hold your government accountable that is fine. But I expect better.

    Pro-choice vs. pro-life have to do with the articles of impeachment how? Next are you going to acuse me of being a communist??

    Your get the last response. I am done with this discussion.

  • At 9:24 AM, Anonymous fauxkeero said…

    That is ridiculous Fauxkeero. The Senate isn't a court of law and shouldn't be determining outcomes of law.

    Gee, I think the authors of the U.S. Constitution (see Article 2) might disagree with you.

  • At 9:42 AM, Anonymous verplanck colvin said…

    Anonymous, it IS black and white. You need a warrant to wiretap US citizens. He didn't get one. The end. And the reason democrats didn't speak of this matter is because they were forced not to. Jay Rockefeller, the senior Dem on the Intelligence committee, was bried on this and couldn't talk to anyone else about it. How is this appropriate Congressional oversight?

    Who said this was Bush's idea? The thing is, he's the PRESIDENT. He's RESPONSIBLE for being held accountable. Sure a bunch of lawyers twisted the AUMF and Article 2 to give a rationale for the spying, that doesn't absolve the president of approving a program that clearly violates FISA.

    As for Clinton, you're talking physical searches, which are not covered under FISA. And since when did one illegal action legitimize another?


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