Vetting Bush

Veterans for Peace (VFP), the national antiwar organization, is calling on Congress to immediately impeach President George W. Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney for high crimes and misdemeanors. “Many of us are combat-hardened, we’ve been in battle, and we know that war has to be the last resort,” says Alan Horn, a Vietnam-era veteran and chief yeoman for VFP Chapter 71, based in Santa Rosa. “With this president, war is the first resort.” He added that Bush and Cheney deserve to be impeached for “lying about weapons of mass destruction.” Horn’s own story of defying military authorities while in the service is documented in the 1992 book A Matter of Conscience: GI Resistance During the Vietnam War.

Train in Vain

The opposition to the Sonoma-Marin Area Rail Transit District’s (SMART) proposed quarter percent increase in the sales tax, on the ballot in both counties in November 2006, is already lining up. The Marin United Taxpayers Association, Marin Citizens for Effective Transportation, People of Sonoma for Transit and the Sonoma County Taxpayers’ Association have formed a coalition against the measure, Citizens Opposed to the SMART Train Tax. But won’t mass transit make more sense than ever next year, considering gasoline may be pushing $4 per gallon or more? Nonsense, says Fred Levin, executive director of the Sonoma County Taxpayers’ Association. “Even with the increased cost of gasoline, I don’t think the district will get the ridership it projects,” he says. “I don’t think it’s sustainable.”

Steward’s Folly

On Aug. 9, Napa County Department of Elections director John Tuteur will announce if two measures submitted by the Napa Valley Land Stewards Alliance, the Fair Payment for Public Benefit Act and the “Read and Understand” initiative, have gathered enough signatures to qualify for the ballot. The latter measure requires county supervisors to read and understand every ordinance they vote on, signing off on each one. “It seems ironic to me that an organization [the Land Stewards] whose mantra is less government regulation is putting this on the ballot,” says Third District Supervisor Diane Dillon, who adds that she already reads and understands everything she votes on, and if her constituency feels otherwise, they can always vote her out of office.

–R. V. Scheide

From the August 3-9, 2005 issue of the North Bay Bohemian.

© 2005 Metro Publishing Inc.

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