Category Archives: General Posting

What we progressives should do to create a new, democratic, more egalitarian society

[Hank Bardel is the 2017 Green Party candidate for Staten Island Borough President.]

hank_fbThe problems in this world of poverty, unemployment, low wages, environmental problems, homelessness, war, legal and illegal drug abuse, alcoholism, racism, ethnic scapegoating and lack of adequate healthcare are basically caused by a maldistribution of wealth.The 1% who are the multimillionaires and the billionaires own 38% of the wealth in the United States.They also get a large percentage of the income through their corporations.This situation also exists in countries around the world.

What we have to do is  create a real democracy, A democracy where we get all the facts we need to make intelligent decisions. We need to get the facts and then through logic make the intelligent decisions democratically to make good laws.
We also have to redistribute the wealth in a more equitable manner. We have to have a progressive income tax starting with single people making over $150,000.00 and married people making over $200,000.00, to the wealthy making $10,000,000,00 or more. At the $10,000,000.00 level then we should start taxing at 90%. We also have to have an estate tax after excluding the first $5,000,000.00.
We live in a country where we have a mixed economy. By that I mean our economy. in the business and government sectors. that consists of corporations like General Motors,   small businesses, medium size businesses, partnerships like  law firms, cooperatives like Welch’s grape jelly , worker cooperatives like Cooperative Home Care Associates, non-profits like United Way and Federal, State and local government organizations that deliver services.
 I think that we should keep our mixed economy. However I believe that we have to have strong regulations that regulate all organizations. We should keep our mixed economy because all organizations can perform very efficiently. If an organization survives and delivers a good or service we should keep it. We could also mandate like in Germany that corporations give workers a seat on the board of directors. Opening up your own business can be very creative.
Our foreign policy should be based on diplomacy. We should also have an adequate military to defend ourselves.As far as the military goes we should be aware as President Dwight Eisenhower warned us in 1961 about “the unwarranted acquisition of influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military industrial complex”.
Economically we have to realize that we have 2 important forces in economics. They are supply and demand, To make our economy work and work efficiently we have to have supply and an equal amount of demand. When our supply side (our goods and services) is set up we have to have an equal amount of demand (people with enough money to buy back the goods and services being produced). This is what causes a healthy equitable economy. It’s as simple as that.
Henry Bardel

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Sunday barbecue with Hank

Hi Everybody,

On Sunday, July 24th I went to a barbecue attended by Green Party members and other Progressives on Staten Island and told many of them that I was running for Congress for Staten Island and part of Brooklyn. I also handed out copies of the 10 Key Values of the Green Party. About a hundred people attended the barbecue.

Hank Bardel

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Ten Key Values of the US Green Party

Hi Everybody,

The following are the Ten Key Values of the US Green Party. This is what we stand for. Please look them over carefully.

Thanks,
Hank Bardel


1. Grassroots Democracy

Every human being deserves a say in the decisions that affect his or her life and should not be subject to the will of another. Therefore, we will work to increase public participation at every level of government and to ensure that our public representatives are fully accountable to the people who elect them. We will also work to create new types of political organizations which expand the process of participatory democracy by directly including citizens in the decision-making process.

2. Social Justice and Equal Opportunity

All persons should have the rights and opportunity to benefit equally from the resources afforded us by society and the environment. We must consciously confront in ourselves, our organizations, and society at large, barriers such as racism and class oppression, sexism and homophobia, ageism and disability, which act to deny fair treatment and equal justice under the law.

3. Ecological Wisdom

Human societies must operate with the understanding that we are part of nature, not separate from nature. We must maintain an ecological balance and live within the ecological and resource limits of our communities and our planet. We support a sustainable society which utilizes resources in such a way that future generations will benefit and not suffer from the practices of our generation. To this end we must practice agriculture which replenishes the soil; move to an energy efficient economy; and live in ways that respect the integrity of natural systems.

4. Non-Violence

It is essential that we develop effective alternatives to society’s current patterns of violence. We will work to demilitarize, and eliminate weapons of mass destruction, without being naive about the intentions of other governments. We recognize the need for self-defense and the defense of others who are in help- less situations. We promote non-violent methods to oppose practices and policies with which we disagree, and will guide our actions toward lasting personal, community and global peace.

5. Decentralization

Centralization of wealth and power contributes to social and economic injustice, environmental destruction, and militarization. Therefore, we support a restructuring of social, political and economic institutions away from a system which is controlled by and mostly benefits the powerful few, to a democratic, less bureaucratic system. Decision-making should, as much as possible, remain at the individual and local level, while assuring that civil rights are protected for all citizens.

 6. Community Based Economics

Redesign our work structures to encourage employee ownership and workplace democracy. Develop new economic activities and institutions that will allow us to use our new technologies in ways that are humane, freeing, ecological and accountable, and responsive to communities. Establish some form of basic economic security, open to all. Move beyond the narrow “job ethic” to new definitions of “work,” jobs” and “income” that reflect the changing economy. Restructure our patterns of income distribution to reflect the wealth created by those outside the formal monetary economy: those who take responsibility for parenting, housekeeping, home gardens, community volunteer work, etc. Restrict the size and concentrated power of corporations with- out discouraging superior efficiency or technological innovation.

7. Feminism and Gender Equity

We have inherited a social system based on male domination of politics and economics. We call for the replacement of the cultural ethics of domination and control with more cooperative ways of interacting that respect differences of opinion and gender. Human values such as equity between the sexes, interpersonal responsibility, and honesty must be developed with moral conscience. We should remember that the process that determines our decisions and actions is just as important as achieving the outcome we want.

8. Respect for Diversity

We believe it is important to value cultural, ethnic, racial, sexual, religious and spiritual diversity, and to promote the development of respectful relationships across these lines. We believe that the many diverse elements of society should be reflected in our organizations and decision-making bodies, and we support the leadership of people who have been traditionally closed out of leadership roles. We acknowledge and encourage respect for other life forms than our own and the preservation of biodiversity.

9. Personal and Global Responsibility

We encourage individuals to act to improve their personal well- being and, at the same time, to enhance ecological balance and social harmony. We seek to join with people and organizations around the world to foster peace, economic justice, and the health of the planet.

10. Future Focus And Sustainability

Our actions and policies should be motivated by long-term goals. We seek to protect valuable natural resources, safely disposing of or “unmaking” all waste we create, while developing a sustainable economics that does not depend on continual expansion for survival. We must counterbalance the drive for short-term profits by assuring that economic development, new technologies, and fiscal policies are responsible to future generations who will inherit the results of our actions. Make the quality of life, rather than open-ended economic growth, the focus of future thinking.

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Military-Industrial Complex Speech, Dwight D. Eisenhower, 1961

Hi Everybody,
I’m posting President Dwight Eisenhower’s 1961 speech warning Americans about the dangers of “the unwarranted acquisition of influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military industrial complex” in order to make it easier to familiarize yourselves with the pertinacity of his reasoning both then and now.
Hank Bardel


A vital element in keeping the peace is our military establishment. Our arms must be mighty, ready for instant action, so that no potential aggressor may be tempted to risk his own destruction.

Our military organization today bears little relation to that known by any of my predecessors in peacetime, or indeed by the fighting men of World War II or Korea.

Until the latest of our world conflicts, the United States had no armaments industry. American makers of plowshares could, with time and as required, make swords as well. But now we can no longer risk emergency improvisation of national defense; we have been compelled to create a permanent armaments industry of vast proportions. Added to this, three and a half million men and women are directly engaged in the defense establishment. We annually spend on military security more than the net income of all United States corporations.

This conjunction of an immense military establishment and a large arms industry is new in the American experience. The total influence — economic, political, even spiritual — is felt in every city, every State house, every office of the Federal government. We recognize the imperative need for this development. Yet we must not fail to comprehend its grave implications. Our toil, resources and livelihood are all involved; so is the very structure of our society.

In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the militaryindustrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist.

We must never let the weight of this combination endanger our liberties or democratic processes. We should take nothing for granted. Only an alert and knowledgeable citizenry can compel the proper meshing of the huge industrial and military machinery of defense with our peaceful methods and goals, so that security and liberty may prosper together.

Akin to, and largely responsible for the sweeping changes in our industrial-military posture, has been the technological revolution during recent decades.

In this revolution, research has become central; it also becomes more formalized, complex, and costly. A steadily increasing share is conducted for, by, or at the direction of, the Federal government.

Today, the solitary inventor, tinkering in his shop, has been overshadowed by task forces of scientists in laboratories and testing fields. In the same fashion, the free university, historically the fountainhead of free ideas and scientific discovery, has experienced a revolution in the conduct of research. Partly because of the huge costs involved, a government contract becomes virtually a substitute for intellectual curiosity. For every old blackboard there are now hundreds of new electronic computers.

The prospect of domination of the nation’s scholars by Federal employment, project allocations, and the power of money is ever present and is gravely to be regarded. Yet, in holding scientific research and discovery in respect, as we should, we must also be alert to the equal and opposite danger that public policy could itself become the captive of a scientific-technological elite.

It is the task of statesmanship to mold, to balance, and to integrate these and other forces, new and old, within the principles of our democratic system — ever aiming toward the supreme goals of our free society.

 

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New York City Green Party candidates meeting

On 5/11/16 I attended a meeting of the New York City Green Party candidates running for office this coming November. We discussed about 7 topics. The meeting was held at the home of Tom Siracuse who lives on the Upper West Side of Manhattan.
We discussed that some people were calling Green Party candidates  “spoilers”. I said that we should pretty much ignore that kind of name calling because the real spoilers are the Republicans and Democrats with their policies that are ruining the American economy and the American environment and that we should explain this in our campaigns.
The subject of the American foreign policy was brought up. I stated that a lot of our foreign policy was based, in my opinion on what President Dwight D. Eisenhower warned the American people against in 1961. He warned that “we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought,by the military industrial complex.” Based on the US government budget and and the U.S. foreign policy it looks to me like there is way too much influence by the military industrial complex,
I also talked about my campaign issues like talking about demand side economics which includes taxing the 1% who are the billionaires so that we can pay for programs like the WPA jobs program and the single payer health care system. We also have to protect the environment by banning fracking and regulating corporations 
I also talked about how a candidates campaign website can keep voters informed.
Hank Bardel

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Campaign Notes

Hank was pretty busy this past week

On Thursday, he was interviewed by Courtney Gross, a reporter for NY1 News. The interview, conducted in Hank’s residence, took about half hour. She’s going to get back to Hank with the air date and time.

On Friday, Hank spoke at the Richmond County American Legion Hall at a candidates forum they held. There were 5 Republican and 3 Democratic candidates there, including one of Hank’s opponents, Republican Michael Grimm. Domenic Recchia, the Democrat, didn’t attend.

On Saturday, Hank attended a Peace Action Dinner at the Olivet Presbyterian Church. He did some campaigning and handed out campaign flyers. He had a chance to speak with a number of progressives who attended. One woman talked to him about 5 toxic chemical dumps on the North Shore that need to be cleaned up immediately. One of them was used in the Manhattan Project that developed the atomic bomb. It still contains uranium contamination.

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Our new campaign flyer

bfc_new _flyer_color

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October 18, 2014 · 7:50 am

Unions Make Endorsements — But Not for Cuomo

Green Party candidate for Governor of NY, Howie Hawkins is mentioned in this article from the Albany / Capitol Region Time Warner Cable News: http://albany.twcnews.com/content/news/761167/unions-make-endorsements—-but-not-for-cuomo/

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