Tag Archives: Green Party

Dee’s Green Party of Utah Party Office Candidate Speech

Yesterday (June 24) the Green Party of Utah held its state convention. Candidates for party offices were elected and Dr. Jill Stein was our guest speaker.

I was elected to state delegate to the national Green Party and as a state Grassroots Coorindator.  This is the speech I prepared, part of it was earmarked for an acceptance speech, but we ran behind so I did not get to deliver it in person, so I offer a slightly modified version of it here.


Good afternoon , my name is Deanna Dee Taylor and I am a candidate for Grassroots Coordinator and  National Delegate. The following words, written by my husband Tom, hang on various walls in my home and serve as a daily reminder of what I believe.

I pledge allegiance to ALL life

in its interdependent diversity;

and to the Planet upon which it exists;

one World, under the sky, undividable

with harmony and balance for ALL.

I want to talk to you about the sunflower.

There is a project called the Fukushima Sunflower Foster Parent Project, launched in 2011 about two months after the nuclear power plant disaster. The hope was that sunflowers could be used to cleanse radiation-contaminated soil, as reported following the 1986 Chernobyl nuclear crisis. But it was determined that sunflowers actually had little effect on removing radioactive contamination, so Team Fukushima decided to focus its efforts on reviving the economy. What happened next was nothing short of miraculous, as reported in the Japan Times in 2015.

The project distributed more than 12,000 bags containing 5 grams of imported sunflower seeds to schools, businesses, groups and individuals.

Ten tons of harvested seeds were returned the following year and were then used across Fukushima to grow sunflowers, make edible oil and process used sunflower oil for fuel. As a result, people came to visit Fukushima, helping to restore the economy. The project helped to create jobs, restore businesses, and build tourism through a charter bus system that developed the use of biofuel, processed from waste sunflower oil, to power some of its route buses.

Team Fukushima represented the desires of its people to restore life from disaster through the sunflower, which is also the international symbol of nuclear disarmament and of the Green Party. As a Green Party National Delegate, I plan to represent the members of the Green Party of Utah to the national Green Party in an effort to be active in the movement to restore the interests of our people TO our people, from the disaster of our political climate today.

Since I was a small child I have loved life. I have always felt a kinship to the planet. This passion has led me down many wonderful paths as I have grown. One of those paths led me to the Green Party 17 years ago. Today I formally reaffirm my commitment to furthering the values of the Green Party through my active participation in the Green Party of Utah, and through the example I strive to live each day in alignment with the Ten Key Values. My hopes and desires for the GPUT are to see it develop as a viable party in Utah to truly represent the will of the people of this state and offer REAL choices to the state’s voters of candidates who hold the interests of the people, of the environment, and of all life, ABOVE everything else!

Most of all, my heart is with our Mother who provides us the air we breathe and water we drink, and to whom I owe my existence.

Having served as Green Party National Delegate in the past, I am familiar with the role and responsibility of Delegate to fully represent the will of the GPUT membership on all issues discussed and up for vote at the national level. I fully intend to serve on the membership’s behalf to the National Committee of the Green Party and to ensure that the values upon which the Green Party is built, are a priority.

In the words of Petra Kelly, founder of the German Green Party – the FIRST Green Party – and leader in the disarmament and social justice movements– “If there is a future, it will be Green.”

Well, that future has arrived, Green Party of Utah! And we ARE green and growing!

War and Peace: Militarizing Our Youth

Today is another Blog Action Day over at Green Change.  The theme for today is War and Peace.  This is a timely connection to the 7th anniversary of the Invasion and Occupation of Iraq by Coalition Forces and the continuing wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.   I have chosen to focus my war and peace report on military recruiting in schools.  The militarization of our youth is big business and it starts in our public schools. 

To begin, here is a 2007 video made by Working Assets and Mainstreet Moms called Leave My Child Alone.

I first learned about the clause in the No Child Left Behind Act  (incarnation of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act) about giving student information to recruiters when my son was still in high school.  I wrote this piece on Chlorophyll  back in 2006:

No Child Left Unrecruited

Many folks may not be aware that there is a tiny clause buried in the "No Child Left Behind" Act (NCLB) that requires schools to give military recruiters access to high school student records upon request…..or face losing funding. Here is the section in the NCLB:

Continue reading

International Women’s Day

Happy International Women’s Day!

Here is an article on how IWD started:  The First International Women’s Day

Reuters has a "follow the sun" live blog that is  following events and news for IWD.

Read the Green Party’s Platform (currently under revision) on Social Justice which includes Women’s Rights.

The Status of Electoral Reform in Utah

Today is Green Blog Action Day over at Green Change.  The topic for today is electoral reform, which is addressed  in the Green Party’s platform.   It will be interesting to read from bloggers on Green Change from all over the country on the topic of electoral reform.   My contribution to the Green Blog Action Day today is to provide a summary of electoral issues in Utah, including bills up for adoption during this year’s Legislative Session.

The recent U.S. Supreme Court decision, that resulted in granting corporations the same constitutional rights as people have, has, in essence, made a mockery of campaign finance laws and election laws in general.   We have before us, then, greater challenges than ever before in the world of electoral politics.

One of the biggest issues at the forefront in Utah has been election fraud, an issue that many states have faced.  Voters have found in recent years that their votes haven’t counted or they weren’t even able to vote, or that the electronic voting machines were flawed.  Greens, such as David Cobb, 2004 Green Party Presidential Candidate, have been at the forefront of demanding vote recounts in elections where fraud was suspected.  "Either every vote is sacred, or democracy is a sham."~ David Cobb, December 2009

Many readers may remember the Utah election news of 2006 that made national headlines, news that cost one brave Utah Elections Clerk his job.  This video clip says it all:

Election Integrity is the focus of  Utah: Count Votes!, which has a number of documents posted at its site on election laws in Utah.  Created by renowned Mathematician Kathy Dopp (Green who ran for Summit County Elections Clerk in 2006), the site is filled with accounts, facts and evidence of election fraud in Utah’s elections history:

Utah must adopt the same measures that California has adopted if Utah wants fair and accurate election outcomes. California source code reviews and red team penetration tests found that "the Diebold software contains vulnerabilities that could allow an attacker to install malicious software on voting machines and on its central election management systems, which could cause votes to be recorded incorrectly or to be miscounted" and that "some threats would be difficult, if not impossible, to remedy with election procedures". The Diebold Source Code Review Team found that "both the electronic and paper records of the Diebold TSx direct recording electronic voting machine contain enough information to compromise the secrecy of the ballot". Diebold voting system violates the Utah constitution which requires a secret ballot.

(NOTE:  Kathy Dopp is now in New York pursuing a PhD in political science and has a blog entitled "Election Mathematics").

This year’s lawmakers in Utah will be considering H.B. 95 Certification of Voting Equipment Modifications, which
requires voting equipment to be certified by the United States Election Assistance Commission

The EAC is an independent entity, established by the Help America Vote Act to help ensure election integrity in the United States.  More bills before the Utah Legislature are listed towards the end of this post.

Election integrity issues are not unique to national and state elections in Utah.  The ACLU of Utah reported election irregularities in the Ogden Municpal election of 2007.

The report concludes that while the letter of the law may not have been fully abridged, the spirit of the election was certainly violated by inappropriate actions, including unnecessary voter challenges and poll worker error. The report also details that 146 voters were challenged, 1646 provisional ballots were cast, and of those 478 were rejected. 180 of the 478 rejected votes were not counted because the voter was not registered, but the remaining 298 were discounted due to technical or other error.
As a result of this investigation, the ACLU made these recommendations:
legislative reform, enhanced election oversight and standardized, higher quality training for election officials. The organization also encourages civic groups to participate in the process in order to assure transparency and voter confidence.

The ACLU of Utah continues its efforts to educate constituents on a variety of issues, one being Election Day Registration, eliminating the need for provisional ballots (interestingly, see comment below list of bills before Utah’s lawmakers this year about Utah’s "abandoned bills").

The Governor’s Commission on Strengthening Utah’s Democracy published a series of recommendations in the areas of campaign finance, voting accessibility, and enforcement presented to the Governor in November 2009:


Local public radio station, KCPW, aired a segment on Election Reform in Utah, which can be heard here

2010 could be the year for campaign finance reform in Utah.  The Governor’s Commission on Strengthening Utah’s Democracy has approved several recommendations that are being turned into bills at the state legislature, including campaign contribution limits and a commission to enforce election laws.  We talk with Commission Chairman Kirk Jowers and State Representative Craig Frank.

There are a number of other bills being addressed on elections and campaigns in Utah, some listed below (click on the link to read the bill).

On Voting:
HB0079Valid Voter Identification Amendments
HB0161Voter Registration Amendments
HB0044Referendum Ballot Proposition Amendments
HB0244Provisional Ballot Amendments for Unregistered Voters
HB0245Voter Challenge Amendments
HB0254Voter Identification Amendments
HB0258Voting Precinct Boundaries
HB0358Voting by Mail
SB0053Voter Challenge Revisions

On Elections:
HB0368Election Day Voting Centers
SB0018Election Modifications
SB0119Special Elections Modifications
SB0195Elections, Lobbying, and Campaign Finance Enforcement Commission

On Campaign Finance:

HB0056Amended Campaign Financial Statements
HB0059Campaign Finance Revisions
HB0124 and HB0124S01Campaign Funds Expenditure Restrictions
HB0160Campaign Finance Provisions

It is interesting to note at the bottom of the page on Elections bills, these two bills that were "abandoned" (and therefore have no link to their texts):  "Oversight of Local Elections" and "Same Day Voter Registration"

Utah has interesting and challenging issues before its Legislators at this time.  Democracy is eminently at stake.  It is important that citizens closely monitor election bills, contact /visit their representatives to register their desires on issues, write letters to the editors of their local newspapers, visit the capitol during the legislative session, and attend any opportunities afforded to citizens to learn more about the legislative process.

(cross-posted to Utah Legislature Watch, Green Party Watch, and Green Change)





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