By Bruce B. Brugmann
To fellow San Franciscans:
Now that even the San Francisco Chronicle/Hearst has declared in a lead front page story that Pelosi will legislate
"from the middle," the Guardian recommends at minimum three specific proposals for her constituents to push theincoming speaker of the house to do to seriously represent San Francisco values.
l. Pelosi needs to allow Congress to start impeachment proceedings against President Bush and Vice-President Cheney. Bush has rejected the modest recommendations of the Iraq Study Group and Friday's New York Times reported in one story that Sen. John McCain as saying in Baghdad that the "military considers sending as many as 35,000 more U.S. troops to Iraq" and another story that "Top commanders appear set to urge larger U.S. military." Only impeachment proceedings will provide the leverage to halt the terrible losses of blood and treasure. See current Guardian editorial link above "Impeachment is now the only option."
2. Pelosi needs to use the power of her new office to help pass a federal shield law that would uphold the rights of journalists and news outlets to protect the identity of their sources and to keep possession of their unpublished/unaired material. In the meantime, she needs to help push the Bush administration to stop wrongfully persecuting Joshua Wolfe, a 24-year-old freelance videophotograher now in federal prison in Dublin for refusing to give up his unedited tapes of a 2005 demonstration in San Francisco. He is the only journalist in jail in the U.S., has been in jail longer than any U.S. journalist ever and may stay in jail until the new federal grand jury is impaneled next July. She ought to also help push the Bush administration to hold its fire against two reporters from the Chronicle who face l8 months in jail for refusing to reveal the sources of a grand jury investigation in the Balco scandal. My feeling is that these abusive actions against the press in San Francisco by the Bush adminstration have targeted our city because of its San Francisco values, in this case its tradition of dissent and anti-war activity. Pelosi could start on this issue and promote lots of good will by meeting with the mother and supporters of Wolf. (See link below.)
3. Pelosi needs to introduce and push a a bill to eliminate the Presidio Trust, return the land to the National Park Service where it belongs, and overturn the precedent that is leading to a conservative movement to privatize the National Park system. She made the original mistake of leading the move to privatize the Presidio, on the phony argument of saving it from the Republicans, but now her Democrats are in power and it is time for her to right the wrong. Otherwise, the private Presidio Trust will keep asking for and getting tens of millions of federal money to subsidize a private, commercially driven, ruinous park operation, without sunshine and accountability, without any city zoning control, in growing opposition to neighborhors. Most important, the Pelosi park principle will further fuel the move to privatize the national park system. In effect, Pelosi created the model for the theft of one of our greatest resources, the national park system. (See Guardian editorial link, "A key test for Pelosi.")
These are some real San Francisco values for Pelsoi to support. If she doesn't, she risks leaving a legacy for failing to stop the Iraq War and selling off the Presidio and establishing the precedent for selling of our national parks. B3, celebrating San Francisco values since l966
PS: How to help Josh after the jump
::: WHAT'S NEXT? :::
THIS FRIDAY (DEC 15) we will ask that every Josh supporter call into
Nancy Pelosi's SF office and ask that she take a stand for Josh and take
time to meet with Josh's mother and legal team. Josh is a constituent
in Nancy's district and this is an issue of vital local and national
CALL THIS FRIDAY! (415) 556-4862
If you can't get through please try back later in the day or next week.
::: LETTERS TO ELECTED OFFICIALS :::
A special thank you to everyone who has already taken the time to write
our elected officials asking them to take public stands in support of
Josh. If you didn't get a chance to write your letters, please do so
We are currently focusing our letter campaign on Speaker Pelosi.
For more info and help writing your letter go to:
::: PBS FRONTLINE HOUSE PARTIES :::
We are working on organizing house parties around the Bay Area and
around the country to coincide with the January 9th airing of a PBS
Frontline documentary on the state of press freedom in the US. The show
will include interviews with Josh by legendary journalist and UC
Professor Lowell Bergman as well as details about his case. We also plan
to screen Kevin Epps' short documentary at these parties as well. If you
are interested in attending or hosting a party please contact
::: UPCOMING PRESS CONFERENCE :::
Mark your calenders now for January 22nd when we will be holding a press
conference on the steps of San Francisco City Hall. Time and details TBA
::: JOIN THE FREE JOSH WOLF COALITION :::
Get your organization to sign on to the coalition statement and sign on
as an individual. Read the statement here:
To add your name or organization please contact andy.blue(AT)yahoo.com
::: JANUARY NEW YORK CITY EVENT :::
We are considering organizing an event in NYC in late January. If you
are in NYC and interested in helping or know someone whom you think may
be interested in helping please contact andy.blue(AT)yahoo.com ASAP.
Please feel free to contact me with any questions of if you'd like to
help out in anyway with the effort to free Josh!
Free Josh Coaltion