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Buzz Davis, Army Veteran & Activist

Buzz Davis, Army Veteran & Activist

Buzz Davis, formerly of Stoughton, WI now of Tucson, is a long time progressive activist, member of Common Cause, Veterans for Peace and a former VISTA Volunteer, Army officer Vietnam Era, city and county elected official, union organizer, impeachment organizer, former Exec. VP of WI Alliance for Retired Americans, a retired state government planner, presently working to Stop VA Privatization. dbuzzdavis@aol.com

Ballot Box Has the Capability of Creating Political Revolution

Posted by Buzz Davis, Army Veteran & Activist
Buzz Davis, Army Veteran & Activist
Buzz Davis, formerly of Stoughton, WI now of Tucson, is a long time progressive
User is currently offline
on Monday, 13 June 2016
in Wisconsin

voteOur American national political system is corrupt, but we still have the capability to create a revolution by our vote for a candidate at the ballot box - both in the primaries and the general election.


STOUGHTON, WI - To say that America is in flux is an understatement.

I argue our American national political system is corrupt, as all political systems have been corrupt throughout history.

Kings, queens, emperors, prime ministers, dictators, presidents, etc. are a few of the names of the political bosses. The eternal problem has been how to reduce the arbitrary power of the boss.

In America, a few white (mostly well to do) men designed, after a few false starts, a representative form of government for white men – not women, Blacks or Native Americans. At first only state legislators chose US Senators and the president was elected by legislators. Under centuries of political pressure from progressive forces and a Civil War, we now have popular vote of all persons over 18 of all colors voting for U.S. senators and presidents.

But we have far to go to create a fair election system. We are in a long term effort to change the operation of the American political and economic systems. In military terms we have won and lost battles but have not yet won the war. The 1%ers won the war decades ago. And we probably will not win the progressive war against them for years.

The presidential primary is a combined system of primary voting (closed and open), caucuses and Super Delegates which all combine at the Democratic Party national convention to select the Democratic nominee.

Americans rightfully see a “rigged” system - rigged to favor two parties, big money, and smoke filled back room deals by white guys and now a few women.

Americans want to do away with the caucuses, closed primaries, SuperDelegates and 1%ers and corporations flooding the system with big money asking for big favors from those elected.

Americans want open primaries, public financing of campaigns and then let the chips fall where they may.

But under the present corrupt system, we still have the capability to create a revolution by our vote for a candidate at the ballot box - both in the primaries and the general election.

This year a Revolution DID happen for the Republicans/Tea Baggers - they unexpectedly got Mr. Trump.

“The Revolution” did NOT happen for the Democrats/Progressives in the primaries.

Sanders, advocating political revolution, did NOT win the majority of those who voted Democratic in the primaries. Thus Sanders has lost the primary vote and pledged delegate race. As of yesterday, the SuperDelegates became the deciding factor.

Why? The parties have designed a Rube Goldberg primary system under which the two major parties control the process - pushing big corrupt money into and pushing other parties/candidates out of the presidential election process.

We could have a national system of a couple of primary days. All candidates run in the parties of their choice (Republican, Democratic, Green, etc.), people vote for the top two candidates in the party of their choice, month of TV debates ensues, a month or so later in a second primary citizens vote again for their top choice in the party of their choice, we then have a nominee for each party, more debates, a final election and a winner based upon the popular vote. The federal government would have to set the standards and supervise the elections rather than a mass of local jurisdictions. And Americans want public financing for elections.

At this point, we have several groups or forces in contention for power.

Group 1: On the Right, we have Mr. Trump who would create the political Revolution the conservatives have dreamed of: A nice clean America where the white rich boys run it all, push down women and minorities, get most of the income and wealth, privatize most government functions to make a buck and have the monopoly on “power.”

But they are screaming that the right winger who has brought them to the top of the mountain, where they can see their dream of taking the White House, Congress and the Judiciary is Trump. He’s a right winger who is just too crude. And he can NOT be depended upon to toe the right wing line. He reminds them too much of the crude right wing 1%ers who fund all their campaigns and think tanks.

Group 2: The Clinton dynasty has been pushing for 30 years to get rid of the progressive streak in American politics. They have been successful - one 8 year presidency, a 2008 strong run and a 2016 strong run. But oh my the baggage Ms. Clinton carries into the nomination.

Group 3: Because of Clinton’s “baggage” prosecutors and whistle blowers have the power to derail Clinton’s speeding train into the White House. The corruption of our political system is vast and nearly impenetrable. Various investigations can be leaked – think voting “irregularities in NY, CA and elsewhere. Or, President Obama’s Democratic duct tape damn preventing the Department of Justice from finishing the investigation into Clinton private email server and alleged transmission of sending secret information over unsecure lines can burst.

Or, investigation results can be leaked – remember Deep Throat?

Group 4:  Sanders and or his supporters have a number of options.

A.    Because Clinton does not have enough pledged delegates to win the majority on the first ballot, Sanders can try to neutralize the power of the Democratic party’s kings and queens called SuperDelegates or try to win them to his side.  And win the nomination.

B.   Clinton can choose him as her vice president nominee effectively shutting down his mouth.

C.   Sanders can immediately bring various law suits to challenge the voting in some states, ask for injunctions and possibly cause re-votes in places like NY where alleged “irregularities” have taken place.  Then he could win or lose based upon re-votes.

D.   Sanders can choose to stay in the Senate and campaign for Clinton urging supporters to do the same.

E.   Sanders can choose to run an independent presidential campaign or combine with a party like the Green Party and continue fighting for political Revolution in November.

It is likely that what happens in the next 7 weeks prior to the Democratic convention and at the convention will determine what he decides to do.

Right now in pledged delegates Clinton has 2,203 and Sanders has 1,827 - he is behind by 376. Only the Wash. DC primary June 14th remains with 20 some delegates.

So Sanders can NOT win based upon pledged delegates. Only hundreds of SuperDelegates flipping from Clinton to him can make him win – unless courts require re-votes.

So what can progressives do? Our horse in the race may or may not be chosen the nominee at the Convention. As stated a thousand times, the political Revolution is not about Bernie – it is about us.

The weekend of June 17-19 progressive groups are conducting The People’s Summit in Chicago. Readers can google The People’s Summit and join the thinking process of what we can do to push the political Revolution in America this summer and the years ahead.

The one thing we can NOT do is give up our Hope for a better America with a good future for our little kids. We, as adults, must Fight Back against the powers that wish to enslave Americans economically and politically.

And we must fight for political Revolution with peaceful means!

The genie of violence once out of the bottle is almost impossible to contain. Just look at the Bush/Cheney/Obama/Clinton debacles in the Middle East and North Africa.

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Bernie’s Healthcare Plan is Revolutionary

Posted by Buzz Davis, Army Veteran & Activist
Buzz Davis, Army Veteran & Activist
Buzz Davis, formerly of Stoughton, WI now of Tucson, is a long time progressive
User is currently offline
on Tuesday, 23 February 2016
in Wisconsin

bernie-sandersJust what we need to control costs & provide single payer healthcare for all!


STOUGHTON, WI - The Democratic debate in Milwaukee on February 11th was not one of the best nights for either Sanders or Clinton when it came to explaining their competing healthcare plans for America.

Bernie’s plan basically is the Medicare for All bill supported by progressives for years in our Congress.  This plan would revolutionize healthcare into a single payer system in the US.  The Federal government would tax individuals and employers and with these taxes pay all the healthcare bills for every man, woman and child in America.

In a recent poll 51% of Americans support single payer while 37% oppose it.

Clinton’s plan is basically trying to improve on Obama’s Affordable Care plan by charging additional taxes to pay for incremental changes and expansion of that system.  Basically Clinton keeps the present broken healthcare system of insurance companies, drug companies and for profit and non-profit hospitals in control.

The single payer Medicare for all has gotten nowhere in the past because of continued  campaign finance corruption - whereby healthcare special interests dump bags of money into the political campaigns of politicians supporting the status quo.

Clinton repeatedly asked Sanders where does the money come from?  How much does it cost?  Will it raise taxes?  And of course she states her plan is superior to Sanders’.

Sanders’ plan, including additional taxes, is on his website hiding in plain sight.  It’s a few pages long: berniesanders.com/issues/medicare-for-all/

I am sure Clinton’s staff has studied it well.

It would replace the present US healthcare system with a new single payer system where the Federal government pays all the costs for the system and raises various taxes to pay the bill.  All Americans would receive complete healthcare including prescriptions, dental, mental health and long term care.  Americans would have no more co-pays, no more deductibles and no more arguments with insurance company clerks.

Present total healthcare cost is estimated at about $3.2 TRILLION/yr. for about 323 million people in the USA or about $10,000/yr. per person.

Proposed Medicare for All system cost is estimated to cost about $1.4 TRILLION/yr. with likely additional startup costs.

Taxes:  All present government revenue presently spent on healthcare would be placed into the Medicare for All account.

The following new taxes are added and get placed into the same federal account.

  • 6.2% income based healthcare tax by employers – estimated revenue $.63T/yr.  (Example:  For a person earning $50,000/yr. the employer would pay $3,100/yr.  On average an employer today pays $12,600/yr. for family health insurance.  Sanders plan would save the employer about $9,500/yr.)
  • 2.2% income based tax on households – est. rev. $.21 T/yr. (Example: Per Sanders, a family of 4, after taking the standard deductions, would pay 2.2% on their taxable income for healthcare.  That 2.2% would equal $466/yr.  Presently a family pays about $5,000 in premiums plus about $1,300 in deductibles for a total of $6,300/yr.  Thus the family would save over $5,800 annually.)

How can both the employer and the worker save substantially each year and still have quality healthcare?  Because the high money earners (both salary and unearned income) and the wealthiest Americans will pay higher taxes.  And various tax breaks related to company healthcare spending would be eliminated.

  • Increase marginal income tax rates – est. rev. $.11T/yr.

o   To 37% on incomes over $250,000/yr.

o   To 43% on incomes over $500,000/yr.

o    To 48% on incomes over $2 million/yr. (the top 0.08% or approximately 113,000 households)

o    To 52% on incomes over $10 million/yr. (the top 0,01% or approximately 13,000 households)

  • Tax unearned income (capital gains and dividends) the same as income from work – est. rev. $92B/yr.
  • Limit tax deductions for families making over $250,000/yr. – est. rev. $15B/yr.
  • Place a new tax system on the estates of the wealthiest 0.3% of Americans with estates over $3.5 million – est. rev. $21B/yr.
  • Savings from health tax expenditures.  Per Sanders plan “Several tax breaks that subsidize health care (health-related “tax expenditures”) would become obsolete and disappear under a single-payer health care system…” – est. rev. $310B/yr.

Total additional federal revenues per year equal approximately $1.388TRILLION or about $1.4TRILLION.

Sen. Bernie Sanders’ Medicare for All single payer healthcare plan is a healthcare plan that’s smart for kids, working families and seniors.  It’s smart for American corporations facing an unlevel playing field in developed nations that already have single payer healthcare for their workers.

Sanders’ Medicare for All is a revolution I am in favor of.  Are you?

Read more at berniesanders.com/issues/medicare-for-all/ to help you decide how to vote Tuesday, April 5th in the WI presidential primary.

 

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America Manipulated by 1%ers & Media

Posted by Buzz Davis, Army Veteran & Activist
Buzz Davis, Army Veteran & Activist
Buzz Davis, formerly of Stoughton, WI now of Tucson, is a long time progressive
User is currently offline
on Monday, 07 December 2015
in Wisconsin

san-bernardino-2015Vietnam era veteran Buzz Davis provides his views on the media blitz working overtime to puff out the fog of WAR that is drifting over America. Are the rich 1%ers, Wall Street bankers and the proponents of the military/industrial/political complex clapping their hands in glee because fear mongering is working so well?


STOUGHTON, WI - For 50 years our presidents and generals have been like losing football coaches who lose year after year but always say, “Just wait ‘til you see us WIN next week – we’re gonna crush em!”

McNamara and LBJ were pros at spinning losses into wins in the media.

But on the ground, millions of Vietnamese and soldiers paid a deathly price for their lying and the public’s gullibility. (I include myself in the gullible -- fortunately I was not sent to Vietnam in 1969.)

A month ago the US presidential primaries were debating inequality because activists, unions, economists and -- an unknown old man named Bernie Sanders had pushed America’s massive income and wealth inequality front and center into the presidential campaigns.

The 1%ers saw Sanders shoot up in the polls between March and now. They see he has smashed the hornets’ nest of inequality. 1%ers and their Wall Street/CEO welfare queens will get bit hard in the pocket book if Sanders wins.

How can they destroy Sanders? Dirty tricks? Dark Money floods? Assassination? Ah, how about MORE WAR? That wouldn’t cost us a dime and we’d actually make a buck.

Bam, almost like an orchestra conductor waving the baton, Paris erupts in screams, shots and terror. The media goes into “fear” overdrive ahla 9/11.

Reality be damned. Let’s do war!

You and I know the real terrorists are our neighbors. We have seen the enemy and it is us boozed up at our local bar.

We have had over 450,000 deaths in alcohol related vehicle accidents in the USA in the last 35 years and millions of injuries – many horrific and many permanent. Drunks are the terrorists Americans should be fighting!

But let’s flip back to the political reality of the 1%ers.

So the consultant says to the 1%er, “Sir, here is my proposal. We’ll pull the old war trick. We puff up the fear of a bearded terrorist behind every tree who steals young girls and does beheadings just like our Saudi pals. We call for worldwide war against terror, Republican candidates salivate like Pavlov’s dogs looking at red meat, we play Sanders as a wimpy lefty/socialist, Clinton will put on her aviator jump suit like Bush and struts like a tough guy, Sanders sinks like a rock, we put Dark Money behind Bush III cause he is the most trustworthy putty in our hands, the race is Bush III against momma Clinton, we drop the dirty trick bag on Clinton that Billy will be running the White House and Bush III wins with our Stop The Vote Drive.

Result: We have another nice hot war for our buddies in the military industrial complex. We make money. The peons forget this BS about income inequality. I figure it will only cost about $2 billion.

What do you think sir?

Do it. Have David cut the checks when you leave.

Thank you Mr. Koch!

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Every Successful Sniper Round Leads to a Knock on the Door

Posted by Buzz Davis, Army Veteran & Activist
Buzz Davis, Army Veteran & Activist
Buzz Davis, formerly of Stoughton, WI now of Tucson, is a long time progressive
User is currently offline
on Thursday, 05 February 2015
in Wisconsin

vietnamwar2One veteran's reaction to the new 'American Sniper' movie.


STOUGHTON - All the senseless deaths, grievous injuries and destruction in war.  Maybe we will "never learn."  Across the world many are fighting back against these death machines we call governments.  This is a fight we can never stop.

American Sniper is just one item in this world that shows how much we have lost our way.  The supposed moral leaders of our nation are for the most part silent on America's never ending wars - called the War on Terror.

For each successful sniper shot, somewhere in the world there is a knock on the door - the messenger of death has arrived.

It reminds me of some of the worst days of my life.  I was a lieutenant stationed at Fort Bragg, NC.  I was informed that I was to serve as a survival assistance officer.  I soon found out what that meant.

I had to go tell a family that their young son was missing in action.  The soldier killed was a young Black man about 18, drafted, in Vietnam just a week or two.

The Mother and Father were divorced or separated.  The Army demanded I go and tell the Father first.  I had to go to the Mother's town to ask were the Father was, then go tell him in another town where he was working and then drive back to the Mother's town and tell her.  The agony for the Mother and his sisters was probably terrible.  When people saw my military car and driver I am sure the phones started ringing and they all dreaded for those we were going to see.

A few days later the Fort received a telegram that the young man had been killed in action in a "firefight."

I told the colonel I should go tell the Mother first and then tell the Father after I found out where he was working that day.  But he said you will tell the father.

So I found the Father an older man in a large field near a pile of lumber.  By the time I walked across the field to him he was just standing there in the hot sun, shoulders slumped all alone with his hands at his side.  I reached him and he says I know what you're going to tell me.  And I said yes.  He says sit down.  So we sit on the pile of lumber and I tell him his son has been killed.  We talk a bit and he explains how much he appreciates me coming and telling him.  I thank him and we shake hands.  As I walk across that field back to my waiting driver I think I tell him his only son is dead and he is very kind to me and thanks me for coming all the way to tell him in person.

An hour or two later I am back at the Mother's home.  Of course they all know by now.  From the very bright sunlight his sister leads me to her Mom's bedroom.  She is in bed in the dark with just small low light lamp at the side of the bed and a chair.  She says he's gone isn't he.  I say yes and she wants me to sit down.  I open the telegram and tell her that her son has been killed in a firefight.  Then I hear a gasp in the room and I look up.  There are about 5 men and women standing around the bed that I had not seen in the dark...They had all been waiting with her.

The Mother then asked was he in much pain.  I said what?  With the fire and all.  Then I realized she thought I was telling her her son had burned to death.  And I thought to myself God we can't even get it straight how to tell loved ones their son is dead.

So I explain that her son was a gun battle which the Army calls a firefight.  She felt better that he son had not burned to death.

A week later I went back to escort his body to the funeral home and prepare everything for the funeral.  Fortunately a sergeant escorted the man's casket from the East Coast.  That sergeant taught me and the detail of soldiers sent to help with the funeral what to do.

The family wanted to have the casket unlocked - my orders were the military said the casket was to be kept locked.  I said to the funeral director and the sergeant I think the casket needs to be kept closed.  But I knew what they wanted to do.  By that time in Vietnam, there were some unusual things going on with bodies and some of course were badly destroyed.  So I left to do something else.  When I returned the sergeant and funeral director showed me the young man's body and we were all thankful everything was ok.

I will never forget giving his Mother, a very small slender woman, the American flag after we removed it from his casket at the funeral.

The chairs for the family were very close to the grave.  At the proper time, I knelt in front of her with the folded flag and said on behalf our nation and the president of the United States of America I present this flag in honor of your son's sacrifice to our nation.

Just as I finished this the rifles went off with a very loud crack a couple feet away from the foot of the grave.  People screamed and jumped up.  I was so startled I jumped up, the Mother jumped up, I started falling backward into the open grave toward the casket.  She reached out and grabbed me.  There we were holding on to each other with the flag wedged between us.  I then sat her back down, saluted, went to the back and the minister took over to conduct the ceremony.

I have blocked that young solder's name and that wonderful family's name from my memory.  I think my brain just does not want to revisit those times.

So much senseless death going on and on century after century.

Now our government has tricked us again.  The all-volunteer military has turned into a mercenary army.  Our young men and women are again being brain washed into fighting battles for the 1%ers -- the lying, cheating, conniving men and women with kill lists who would never lower themselves to serve their county in the military.  When will we ever learn?

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