We The People Approved
Positions on Issues:
Clean Money Finance Reform - This our top priority and the "mother" of all other issues.
Do you know how much it costs to run for political office? An average
of $360 million to become President, $6 million for Senate, and $600,000
for a seat in Congress. Special interests invested $2.2 billion in campaign
contributions fort the Presidential and Congressional elections of 1996.
Those same special interests received $125 billion worth of benefits
for their campaign contributions, or a 50:1 rate of return on their
investments, according to Time Magazine's special 4 part series in November
of 1998. That means when you go to pay your taxes April 15,th approximately
$1,000 (one thousand dollars) of your Federal tax bill goes to pay for
these benefits as tax relief and government contracts for special interests
(ie. large corporations, wealthy individuals, and big labor unions).
Doesn't that make you angry? $1,000 of your taxes is going to the special
For a mere $10 (ten dollars) per taxpayer, We The People can buy back our / your representatives from the special interests by a means of "public financing of all House and Senate elections" - this means Clean Money Campaign Reform for all House and Senate elections, as well as the Presidential election. That's a saving of $990 - versus the $1,000 we currently pay (without being asked if we want to pay it) to the special interests when we pay our Federal Taxes.
Clean Money Campaign Reform is on the people's minds - we need to take back our country and demand that our elected representatives address this issue and vote for the reforms necessary!
This is your country, our country - and we want it back!
The Direct Democracy Initiative would put you, the people,
back in charge of our democracy - would put in place at the Federal
level what already exists in 24 States - the right of the people to
make laws by means of the initiative and referendum process. The right
has its roots in the Preamble to the Constitution which reads in part:
"We The People of the United States do ordain and establish this Constitution
for the United States of America."
The Direct Democracy Initiative in no way replaces our representative system
of government - it just complements it. If big money and special interests
prevent our representative government from acting, then the people can
act by the initiative and referendum process. That is what happened
when Maine, Arizona, and Massachusetts all passed Campaign Finance Reform
for statewide elections by means of the initiative and referendum process.
Other Issues approved by the membership of We The People:
Universal Catastrophic Health Insurance: we need catastrophic health insurance for all so that no one will be forced into bankruptcy or poverty, due to unexpected and expensive illness(es). In addition, we need Medicare coverage for prescription drugs, and incentives for preventative care and the prevention of illnesses, before curative medicine is required.
Education Reform: the need for minimum standards (all across the US) which are high enough to put students at an advantage in life versus a disadvantage. (Note: We need to rethink the definition of what a good education is and what form it takes; we need to rethink the industrial revolution "time clock" model.) These reforms might include smaller class sizes (ie. 15:1 versus 30 or 40:1); year around classes (so the student's family has the choice of which quarter, if any, to take off for personal fulfillment, travel or alternative study); vouchers so all students have equal opportunity (not a guarantee of equal outcome); requirement of teachers to take on-going training and classes and that they be required to teach only in their areas of expertise and training; consider setting-up a privatized educational system as an alternative to public education and the governmental bureaucracy that it creates.
A Livable Wage and Full Employment: The current minimum wage of $5.15 - $6.15 per hour is well below the poverty line of $8.00 per hour, or $16,600 per year. The poverty line is defined as the minimum necessary to buy food, clothing, shelter, and medicine. No adult should earn less than a livable wage. The private sector should be the employer of "first resort"", and the government should only be the employer of "last resort", to guarantee full employment so that all citizen's who are able to work can find work. Without work, there is no self-esteem; without self-esteem, people sometimes commit crimes and are a burden to society. It is in everyone's enlightened "self-interest" that everyone who needs to work to "make ends meet" can find a job at a livable wage.
Environmental Choice: Every environmental policy has human as well as financial costs and benefits, and We The People need full information to make informed choices. "Clean water, Clean air, Clean land" are not too much to expect in our country, in fact in our world! "He who pollutes pays" - the polluter should pay the price of full clean-up. A robust economy and a clean, biologically productive environment are not in conflict. On the contrary, they need each other over the long term if they are to continue to survive and prosper.
a) anti-pollution standards should be drawn to protect EVERYONE in society as much as possible rather than be based on a safe threshold for healthy young adults. Inclusive instead of exclusive, so to speak.
b) The costs of regulation and the risks of the health threats that government is seeking to curb are important tools in setting environmental standards, but they are only tools, not ends in themselves. Many other factors are taken into consideration in reaching a final decision, not the last nor least of which is ethics.
c) We The People endorses the application of the "precautionary principle". Hence, when there is enough evidence to warrant concern that serious and/or irreversible environmental harm might occur, lack of full scientific certainty should not be used as justification for blocking measures that are beneficial in their own right and would diminish the potential for experiencing such harm.
d) Consideration should be given to gradually replacing, or at least offsetting, the federal income tax with a tax on consumption.
e) Consumers might actively help curtail pollution by understanding and adopting active support and participation in the ZEV Program (Zero Emission Vehicles) which needs to stay on the books. The manufacturers are starting to withdraw the vehicles from the U.S. market (ie. Honda's electric car) due to slow sales. This is a question of education and information to the consumers and a national policy for the U.S. Federal government to purchase zero emission vehicles (eg. electric) for its huge fleet, thus creating a market and reducing the market cost by higher volume production. The environment can not make up for our lack of responsibility - if we adopt the " he who pollutes pays" policy, perhaps owners of traditional combustion engine vehicles will pay more instead of the owners of electric (or other environmentally sound) vehicles! We need to protect what we have or we will lose it!
The Defense Budget, the Military and our Real National Security Needs:
contrary to what our elected officials and the military are
telling us, we hear from enlisted and recently retired officers that
- its all about "pork", procurement, standards (standards which are
across the board and not different for each service branch), and watching
that defense contractors actually do what they are contacted to do,
what they say they will do, actively monitoring their performance. Honesty,
creative solutions to problems (ie. when equipment and parts are not
easily available, being able to fix something without going through
the procurement bureaucracy; or recognizing when a part can be purchased
or repaired less expensively than by going through the often inflated
pricing systems of the procurement offices), and personal responsibility
are key to excellence - excellence in attitude, excellence in personal
relations, and excellence in process, the flow of work and in the results
achieved. Personal integrity and responsibility have slipped, and the
military service is back in the attitude of the 1970's after Vietnam
with cutbacks, layoffs, and reduction of services. There needs to be
more standardization across the board - a return to a standard of excellence..
This does not necessarily mean a higher budget, or even one at the level
we have today. What is suggested is a return to responsibility, to remove
"pork" at all levels, and a return to the highest standards of which
we are capable.
(We The People is organized as a democracy - one person, one vote; and for an issue to be approved, it must be approved by 66% of the Members who choose to vote)