Thursday, May 3, 2007

May 3, 2007 - Another Smidgin of Action

Day Three in the Quest for information direct from the Presidential Candidates. This morning I called into the Kucinich Office. Working my way through the Menu I eventually chose Option No. 3 and discovered Andrew. "Hi," I said. "I want an e-mail address so I can send the campaign a questionnaire." I thought that was non-controversial; Andrew wanted more information.

"What is it you are sending?" He asked.

"A form to fill out. Questions."

Andy's voice grew a little suspicious. "What kind of questions?"

"It's an application for the job of president. Application kinds of questions."

Eventually Andy gave me an e-mail address for David Kelley at Yahoo. I thanked him and sent the latter and form. Seconds later it bounced back. I looked at it there in my e-mail folder and opened the file with the phone number.

I naviagated the Menu and found Andy again. In consultation with a feminine voice in the background they ascertained that David has a middle name beginning with 'I'. Ignacious, it seems. Add the 'I' I was told. This time it did not come back - at least not yet.

Then I tried to send info to two of the folks on the Steering Committee. Neither received their e-mail. Was that coffee I heard sloshing in the background? None of us were drinking anything. The phone also clicks, which is not normal. In this day in age no one assumes that telephone conversations are private anymore. When I was very young my best friend who lived right next door and the family on the other side of her shared a line. That was called a Party Line, probably because it was so much fun. But then listening in was naughty; getting caught could get you into trouble, even end in a spanking. We had these ideas about privacy........So much has changed, hasn't it?

The other members of the Steering Committee are just names to you now - but that is going to change. I am going to introduce them. They are all nice people.

Dane Arr is a businessman in Phoenix Arizona. He is happily married and the father of three daughters. He and his family have a lot of cats. More than three, less than 20, Dane says. Dane is an astrologer who does website development, a designer, and is a repository for an enormous database on alternative health. Dane is also an inventor with brilliant ideas. His brother, now deceased, is Ron Ridenhour, the whistle blower who started the investigation into My Lai Massacre in 1969. If you don't remember what My Lai was go here.

Dane misses his brother - but he is proud that he had the courage to do the right thing. Dane asked me today when I think would have happened if no one had ever spoken up and said what was happening over there. Today we are seeing the same issues coming up from Iraq.

I looked at my e-mail box again. No responses yet.

Wednesday, May 2, 2007

May 2, 2007 - A Tiny Bit of Reality

I did not manage to find the National Head Quarters for Dennis Kucinich today. With one thing and another I called his Congressional Office after everyone seemed to have left. That being so I could not ascertain where to send their letter and the accompanying form. The e-mail I had resent during the morning had popped back yet again. It stared at me dourly from my e-mail box. Tomorrow.

Meanwhile, in South Carolina the GOP decided to allow Congressman Ron Paul and the other 'minor' Republican candidates participate in the Presidential Forum they will sponsor on May 15th. I heard about the Forum from the Ron Paul supporters who seemed to be all over the web making a fuss over the
disappointing implication that their candidate would not be allowed to speak. The GOP HQ there was evidently inundated with phone calls. When I called late yesterday to inquire the young man I spoke to told me they had no comment - but that the decision was being made by the GOP in conjunction with Fox News. It seems that Fox is sponsoring the event.

Candidates are required to pay $25,000.00 to be on the ballot in South Carolina. An interesting way to pay for various expenses for political parties.

No word from any other candidates or campaigns. But investigations begin tomorrow.

Tuesday, May 1, 2007

May 1, 2007: Day One - The Race for Reality

We knew from the beginning that introducing the idea of qualifications and disclosure was not going to be popular with those who had taken the Plunge into the Presidential Pool. As much as I would like to say that all of the candidates were excited about receiving their forms to fill out and immediately contacted us with the requested information that is not what happened.

What happened was that during the 24 hours after the letters went out we got two automatic responses, one from the Hillary Campaign and one from the Edwards Camp. The letters thanks us for our support; rather presumptuous, I thought.

The Kucinich letter bounced and so now we are trying to discover why.

I can't say that any of us were surprised; people with egos big enough to run for president doubtless are busy thinking about important things, like how to decorate the Oval Office. I could just hear the snorts of disbelief in the dank corner where the e-mails come in to be sent along to the staffer who is assigned the onerous task of dealing with The Public.

"Look at this! They must be nuts! A job application for PRESIDENT?"

Just so. A job application because who we hire matters. Along with the bounces we also received the following communications from Real People, one of them the candidate himself.

From the Kubby Campaign (Steve Kubby is a Libertarian Candidate)

"I'm not Steve, but Steve as well as the campaign manager and treasurer are copied.

paul,
assistant national volunteer coordinator"

From another Libertarian candidate, George Phillies, we received this:

"Melinda, Good to hear from you. Thank you for your questions. We are putting up information on my web site http://www.phillies2008.com which you may find of interest. We may in time have answers to your questions properly assembled. George"

That's George for you. Ask a Libertarian about him.
And from the campaign of Mike Gravel, Democratic Candidate, we received this response:

"Ms. Pillsbury-Foster
I will see that Senator Gravel receives the Reality Caucus form.
Thank you for including the senator in your program.
Sincerely,
Alex"

Tomorrow I will find the Kucinich HQ. Wish me luck. The Melinda.