“Warning, I Choose The Politics Of Courage, Not Fear!”

“Warning, I Choose The Politics Of Courage, Not Fear!”

By: Christoph L. Rocker 2/24/15

Recent news reports warn that the terror threat level is up and shopping malls may be a target, yet, in the next breath, the newscasters claim the public should feel safe enough to shop. Why such contradictions? Who is deliberately creating this fear? Is it a coincidence that just this week Congress battles over whether or not Homeland Security continues to receive funding?

Citizen Four, the Oscar winning documentary portrays whistle blower Edward Snowden as self-sacrificing. Collecting the award, Poitras, flanked by journalist and collaborator Glenn Greenwald, said: “The disclosures of Edward Snowden don’t only expose a threat to our privacy but to our democracy itself. When the decisions that rule us are taken in secret we lose the power to control and govern ourselves.”

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In an interview with him last year Snowden claims that the NSA’s surveillance is so entrenched that he wishes he would have blew the whistle earlier. All it will take is a “major incident” to enact a policy with a flick of a switch to create “turnkey tyranny.”

This is the politics of fear and the endless war on terror in our new Orwellian Surveillance State in action. Does anyone else see this as more than coincidental, that they may be making stuff up in order to get more funding? Is it possible they are feeding us bits of intelligence and spinning it in order to keep us in fear and our money in their coffers? Or is this the media’s doing?

Edward Snowden was a successful young man who gave up his comfortable life and career as a high level security analyst for the NSA in Hawaii to warn the American Citizens of the abuses of power he eyewitnessed. His greatest fear regarding the outcome for America, is that after hearing all that has been disclosed, the public will do nothing, that they will not force their Representatives to take a stand for their own interests. We need to support him and the sacrifices he has made on our behalf. We need to be heard by our Representatives!

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After hearing all this hype in the news, I visited the National Terrorism Advisory System on Homeland Security’s website. I was expecting a color chart with red or at least yellow, but in 2011 they opted for a new system where anyone can sign up to receive alerts via email, Facebook or Twitter. I visited their Facebook page and could only find posts by Secretary Jeh C. Johnson telling the public how important they are to the DHS. There were no current alerts to be found anywhere.

To quote Noam Chomsky, “To stop terrorism, a good place to start is to stop participating in terrorism.” We export terrorism on a wholesale level, whereas “terrorists” fight with guerrilla tactics in Afghanistan, for example. Those terrorists are fighting a super power, who has invaded their country for oil and other selfish interests. Who has killed more innocent civilians in the war against terror since 9/11? I’ll let you answer that question.

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On WFLA Sean Hannity radio show recently I heard right wing Christians fundraising for soldiers of fortune to go overseas and fight the evil empire. I find this reminiscent of the Crusaders who would do anything to instill fear in their blasphemous Muslim rivals.

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Native Americans were dehumanized by colonialists and then the American government. This genocide occurred through propaganda to create a belief system with hatred and fear of the “savages.” The extermination of almost an entire indigenous population was all for greed, land, and power, not Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness. It’s the same old song and dance. The question is, will we learn from history or be doomed to repeat it?

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Instead of the politics of fear and hate, I choose the politics of courage & love. I exercise my right to free speech before it is lost forever to the warmongers and unfettered capitalism. It is the multinational corporations who are buying governments and taking away all of our rights and destroying our planet at an alarming rate!

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Throughout all this talk, our young men and women are in a foreign country dying because private interests have convinced the public that it’s not about the oil but about the unethical, un-American, inhuman Muslim enemies. How many do we have to kill before it has been an “eye for an eye” for 9/11?

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Why don’t we clean up all the organized crime and white collar corruption here in our homeland before we start trying to fix other cultural problem thousands of miles across the ocean? There is no money in it, that’s why. The KKK is alive and well in America. They still exist and can rise and become more visible if we allow fear mongers to continue these violent and defensive knee-jerk reactions. We are the pot calling the kettle black if we arc going to play on emotions and public sentiment.

Realprogress
Half of registered voters did not vote in the 2014 elections. We can change the world if we believe we can. You make a difference. Register Green today and vote! If you are not registered, register now! Choose the Green Party!

– Christoph L. Rocker

References:

c1- http://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/republicans-split-on-dhs-funding-edging-closer-to-partial-shutdown/2015/02/23/4b2de138-bb76-11e4-b274-e5209a3bc9a9_story.html
c2- www.washingtonpost.com/politics/republicans-split-on-dhs-funding-edging-closer-to-partial-shutdown/2015/02/23/4b2de138-bb76-11e4-b274-e5209a3bc9a9_story.html

c3a- (00:10:46) https://www.youtube.comlwatch?v=Hpvb-hln-ek c3b – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nineteen_Eighty-Four

c3c – (00:11:32) https:llwww.youtube.com/watch?v=Hpvb-hln-ek

c4 (paragraph 13) – http:llwww.nytimes.com/201 5/02/23/us/mall-of-america-terrorism-threat-jeh-c-johnson.html?j=0

c5a – http://www.dhs.gov/how-do-i/check-national-terrorism-advisory-system-ntasc5b – https://www.facebook.comlhomelandsecurity c6 – https://www.youtube.comJwatch?v=kPj89C7bzOO

c7a – http://download.premiereinteractive.comlseanhannity/201 5/O2lSean%2oflannity%20-%2OFeb%2023%2020 I 5%20-%2OHour%203.mp3

c7b – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ui9C6xVpVfO c7c – https://www.youtube.comlwatch?v=b51QFBZjN5M

c8a – http://election.dos.state.fl.us/voter-registration/voter-reg.shtml

c8b – http://gp.org/index.php

Social Justice is a Winner for Greens!

15 Now is a winner in New York. Polls put Hawkins at 9% in a state where the pseudo-independent Working Families Party is set up to siphon the independent vote to the Democrats (WFP is backing Cuomo), and the state’s Democratic Party is one of the most powerful in the nation.

Reprinted from the Hawkins campaign:

Village Independent Democrats Endorse Howie Hawkins.  First Time Venerable Club Has Ever Endorsed Third Party Candidate

Posted by Daniel Goldstein October 12, 2014 10:02 AM

(New York City) – The progressive Village Independent Democrats endorsed Green Party Governor candidate Howie Hawkins at their Friday endorsement meeting.

It is the first time in the venerable club’s history that it has endorsed a third party candidate for any office.

Hawkins for 15.

“I know it is a bold move for any Democratic club to endorse outside the party. But it makes sense as I’m the only candidate who will stand up for the 99% who are getting a raw deal from politicians. I am the only candidate who will ban fracking, and create millions of jobs by moving to 100% clean energy by 2030. And I’m the only candidate that will put a floor on wages with a $15 minimum wage. The endorsement makes sense as I am the only progressive running for Governor.” Hawkins said greeting the endorsement with gratitude.

“This historic endorsement, by this storied Democratic club is further proof that my campaign is gaining momentum as more attention is paid to it and progressives disaffected with Governor Cuomo and Albany corruption are finding a home in my campaign and where I stand on the issues.”

The 57 year-old club is best known for helping put an end to Tammany Hall and for starting Ed Koch’s political career.

“I suggested that our club give thought to endorsing Howard Hawkins, the Green Party candidate for Governor, as he embodies many of our principles including his strong support of labor and the working man. His opposition to fracking is yet another way that he espouses our efforts,” said Village Independent Democrats Executive Committee member Frieda Bradlow.

“Howie Hawkins represents the kind of strong progressive politics this club has historically stood for; such as when, with the aid of Eleanor Roosevelt, it helped put the kibosh on the last vestige of Tammany Hall style corruption in New York in the early 1960s.Since the new breed of political corruption takes the form of corporate money smothering our democracy, our club is staying true to its roots by supporting Howie Hawkins: a genuine friend of the working and middle classes,” said long time club member John Bredin.

Meanwhile …

It’s a winner in St. Petersburg.

Rose Roby and Christian Brooks unite for 15.

Reposted from St Pete Green Party website.

Ban on Plastic Bags

gpf Plastic Bag Ban in Fla20 years ago the question was “Paper or Plastic.” This fight was won by the plastic industry. The question in our supermarkets changed to, Is plastic OK?

But Plastic is not OK. Plastic bags are an incredible waste of resources.  The average bag is thrown away after 10 minutes of use, many often ending up in our oceans – in Florida only 12% of plastic bags are recycled. They fill our landfills where they are blown away to our waterways. Once in the water and exposed to the sun, plastic breaks down relatively quickly but the plastic particles, toxic chemicals such as bisphenol A (BPA) and PS oligomer, can survive 100’s of years. Of these particles, only 30% stay at the surface,  with the majority of the waste falling below the surface or to the ocean floor or ingested by marine life. Continue reading “Ban on Plastic Bags”

New Documents Show Hughes Planned to Frack Orangetree Well

Naples, FL, October 8, 2014 — New public records documents  reveal that the Florida Department of Environmental Protection knew on December 23 of last year, and possibly as early as October, that the Dan A. Hughes oil company was planning to hydraulically fracture their Orangetree oil well outside of Naples. The documents were received on Friday, when Hughes dropped their “trade secret” opposition to a public records lawsuit filed by Preserve Our Paradise, Inc. against the DEP.

The DEP and the oil industry continues to deny even photographic evidence of fracking
The DEP and the oil industry continue to deny even photographic evidence of fracking with hazardous chemicals

The first released document is a Halliburton “Fracpro 2012 Hydraulic Fracture” recommendation to Hughes dated October 21, 2013.  The second released document is a “Well Proposal” dated 23 December 2013 prepared for Dan A. Hughes Company by the Baker-Hughes oil services company notifying the Florida Department of Environmental Protection of Hughes intention to conduct “fracking-like” activities. Although the second document nowhere uses the term “hydraulic fracturing”, the technical specifications are virtually identical to the earlier Halliburton hydraulic fracturing recommendation.  Hughes has continued to claim that the workover operation conducted at the well was not a “fracking” operation.

Don Loritz, Vice President of Preserve Our Paradise, reiterated the organization’s concern that Hughes had long planned to secretly conduct the fracking operations at the Orangetree well over the Christmas holidays, while no one would be paying attention.  An anonymous phone tip on December 27, 2013 alerted Preserve Our Paradise to an oil services convoy heading for the Orangetree well alerting Preserve to concerns about fracking. Because information and public records on the Orangetree Well was not promptly provided, Paradise filed a public records case in circuit court on April 2, 2014 seeking the release of all public records on the Orangetree Well (1394). Less than a week later, on April 7, 2014, the DEP and Dan A Hughes Company signed a consent order imposing a $25,000 fine on Hughes and requiring Dan A. Hughes Company test for possible contamination. On April 18, the DEP revealed this consent order to the press alleging that it had “caught” Hughes performing an “unauthorized operation” on January 1, 2014.

Loritz explained, “For some reason, these new documents do not include cover letters or the usual DEP timestamps, so we do not know exactly when the DEP obtained the Halliburton recommendation.  DEP has filed a lawsuit against Dan A. Hughes in circuit court regarding the workover, but Preserve or Paradise still has concerns about:

1) what was done to protect the public health in advance of the ‘fracking-like’ incident in Orangetree and 
2) whether fracking that has changed the landscape in many parts of the nation will be allowed in Florida.”

A chronology of events surrounding the “fracking” of the Orangetree well is available at http://preserveourparadise.org/?page_id=3703.
The trade secret documents, along with other public records concerning the Orangetree Well released to Paradise in the DEP records response, are available at ftp://vsymp.org/prr%20fdep%204-2-14/Brookes%2010-3-14.

Cannabis Expert MD Challenges a Pharmacist’s View on Medical Marijuana

 

jeff Hergenrather in Baveno2 4

Cannabis specialist Jeffrey Hergenrather, MD, and President of the Society of Cannabis Clinicians, offers critique of North Florida pharmacist Karl Metzger’s dismissal of Medical Marijuana. (Metzger’s article appeared on the website of the Bay County Green Party of Florida, entitled “The Fallacy of the Medical Marijuana Movement – A Pharmacist’s Perspective.” It can be found here.)

Hergenrather introduces us to the field of whole plant therapeutics, and sheds light on the amazing synergistic properties of the cannabinoids and terpenes present in marijuana.

With Medical Marijuana appearing on the ballot in Florida in November, as Amendment 2, the battle is heating up for the hearts, minds, and votes of Floridians. It is essential that voters have an informed view. In that interest, Hergenrather’s response to Metzger’s article is presented here.

From Jeffrey Hergenrather, MD:

I believe that it is very important to integrate the pharmacist Metzger’s viewpoint into a discussion of the use of cannabis as medicine.  Mine is a clinical perspective coming from consulting with thousands of patients for over 35 years.  Lacking that clinical perspective Metzger’s viewpoint is flawed in many respects.

To begin with, when patients are recommended cannabis and cannabis extracts and products, it’s true that we want to have measured medicine in administering with the most safety and efficacy while minimizing adverse facts. It is also true that cannabis is one of the safest substances known to man. In his conclusion, Francis Young, DEA administrative law judge, on page 68 of his 1988 judgement said:

The evidence in this record clearly shows that marijuana has been accepted as capable of relieving distress of great numbers of very ill people, and doing so with safety under medical supervision. It would be unreasonable, arbitrary and capricious for DEA to continue to stand between those sufferers and the benefits of this substance in light of the evidence in this record. The administrative law judge recommends that the Administrator conclude that the marijuana plant considered as a whole has a currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States, that there is no lack of accepted safety for use of it under medical supervision and that it may lawfully be transferred from Schedule 1 to Schedule 2. The judge recommends that the Administrator transfer marijuana from Schedule I to Schedule II.

The pharmacist seems concerned that having the right dose will prevent intolerance which would eventually “render medication useless”. This has not been the case in cannabis medicine. Patients find an effective dose by self titration. In my patient population that I have followed closely for 10-15 years or longer the patients use approximately the same amount of cannabis from year-to-year. Some describe increasing their dose with a flareup of pain or autoimmune disorder. After the flare up the dose of cannabis diminishes again, oftentimes to little or none depending on the condition.  Most patients simply self titrate and remain within a fairly narrow pattern of use. So the concern of the pharmacist is really not a problem for whole plant cannabis as medicine.

We are in agreement about minimizing adverse effects. That is one of the roles of the integrative cannabinologist (the cannabis consulting physician). It is in fact a key role in the patient encounter to determine the appropriate use of cannabis, make recommendations as required by law, advise about strains that may prove best tolerated and effective, and discuss the various methods of administration. The quantities of use are effectively titrated for the best effect to meet the needs of the patient while minimizing adverse facts.

The pharmacist also seems concerned about the number of molecules encountered in the whole plant as if this is a problem. It does create a whole plant research environment with astronomical numbers of different combinations of active ingredients that make it unwieldy for product consistency. Not all pharmacists are hung up on single molecule pharmacology and drug development. Many pharmacists are knowledgeable about the synergism of cannabinoid and terpene molecules providing for much better effects with the whole plant. Single molecule drug development is quite out of touch with using whole plants as medicines. Metzger’s concepts display a lack of knowledge of the “entourage effect” of cannabinoid and terpene molecules that are evident to the cannabis scientific community. These molecules are individually and collectively exceedingly safe. Their efficacy is based at least in part on combining the molecules as they are in the whole plant. The effects on pain and the anti-cancer effects of cannabis are best with combinations of molecules, not with the single molecules.

The commonly encountered terpenes in cannabis are generally considered safe though they may impart a soporific or energizing quality to the cannabis, hence strain selection is an important aspect of recommending cannabis.  Some of the herbalists and naturopathic physicians are bringing the term “adaptogen” to the cannabis conversation. Cannabinoids induce homeostasis by down regulating both nervous system and immune system functions, whether that is to aid in eating, sleeping, relaxing, forgetting, or protecting the body in various ways. Cannabinoids are uniquely able to work as retrograde messengers for any neurotransmitters, facilitating the biological needs that are lumped together as ‘homeostasis”.

It is important to recognize that cannabis smoke, unlike most other smoke, is bronchodilating. This is a unique property of the cannabinoids that make it very helpful for patients with asthma. Asthmatics have varying sensitivities to cannabis smoke. Some prefer to not use inhaled forms at all as the vapor or smoke induces some mucous production and low grade irritation from the smoke despite the bronchodilating effect from the cannabinoid exposure. It is remarkable but true that it doesn’t cause COPD, emphysema, or cancers of the lung or airways as researched by Donald Tashkin, MD, professor emeritus of pulmonary medicine at UCLA.

It may be typical of some pharmacists to only look to single molecules as medications, but there is a public acceptance of plant products in herbal medicine, as well as Chinese, Tibetan and other whole plant remedies. If cannabis were not one of the safest plants known to humankind there might be greater concern about cannabis acute overdose or chronic exposure leading to some other harm. This is however a minor concern for the cannabis specialist as the self titration of dosage is effective and has been used for millennia to find the right dose for cannabis for any particular condition.

The culture of disseminating misinformation about cannabis has been coming from NIH, NIDA, FDA, DEA, and the ONDCP for many decades.  The fears and uncertainty about cannabis created by these reports can be readily dismantled with a little research into the facts.  For example in the Dunedin study alleging diminished IQ in young cannabis smokers, correcting for socioeconomic variables reveals zero differences in the IQ of the study subjects.  You must look at the source and funding of the studies to shed light on the conclusions.

I concur with the pharmacist in recognizing that looking to the future, it is important to measure the content of dominant terpenes and cannabinoids.  With that information in the hands of the patients, the clinicians will all benefit from the patients teaching the clinicians which kind of medicine works best for them. Meanwhile the novice should understand that you must start the dose at a very small quantity and build up slowly for days or even weeks to reach an optimal dose.

One of the more telling aspects of this science comes from a paper in print last year.  It is from a couple of prominent researchers at NIDA, Pacher and Kunos.  They say: “modulating endocannabinoid activity may have therapeutic potential in almost all diseases affecting humans, including obesity/metabolic syndrome, diabetes and diabetic complications, neurodegenerative, inflammatory, cardiovascular, liver, gastrointestinal, skin diseases, pain, psychiatric disorders, cachexia, cancer, chemotherapy induced nausea and vomiting among many others.

While the monied interest appear positioned to develop cannabis medicines as single molecule pharmaceuticals, people throughout the country wish for the day when we will free the plant from the Controlled Substances Act of 1970 and allow cannabis to be grown for personal use and  thereby bring an end to the very divisive and destructive War on Drugs here and abroad.

Jeffrey Hergenrather, MD, President of the Society of Cannabis Clinicians, Sebastopol, CA.

GPF Supports Amendment 2 for Medical Marijuana

medic marij 1For Immediate Release:
Sept. 15, 2014

Contact:
Didier Ortiz:  (954) 709-6172
https://www.gpfl.org/

Green Party of Florida Supports Amendment 2
The Medical Marijuana Initiative

“The fact that the medicinal benefits of cannabis are being increasingly understood and documented by the scientific community flies directly in the face of FDA’s refusal to remove the herb from its Schedule 1 most dangerous classification of drugs,” stated Cathy Gilbert, co-chair of the Green Party of Florida (GPFL). Powerful interests like it just that way, having benefited from cannabis prohibition, from big agriculture, the chemical and textile industries, big pharma, to sectors of law enforcement and the profit-driven prison-industrial complex.

“The Florida State legislature has acted to approve the use of one strain of cannabis for specific medical conditions, Charlotte’s Web, which has been approved by the FDA. Beyond that, it will take the will of the people of Florida to get full Medical Marijuana here,” added Gilbert.

Therefore, the Green Party of Florida unequivocally supports Amendment 2, the Medical Marijuana initiative.  Beyond that, we strongly support all steps toward decriminalization and legalization of cannabis/hemp, and our party’s support for the initiative has to be understood in that context.  This extremely narrow and somewhat flawed measure does not address the massive problems that have been created by Prohibition, such as mass incarceration and the profit-driven prison-industrial complex that feeds off our draconian drug laws.

The Medical Marijuana amendment is to drug laws what the Affordable Care Act is to health care.  It is a band aid that is designed to maintain the status quo while providing some opportunities for corporations and special interests to profit from minor changes in law that will benefit a small sector of the population.  Yes, Amendment 2 is a small step in the right direction, and most of all it is an opportunity for Greens and others to open up the debate and advocate legalization of industrial hemp (which will benefit family farms in Florida) and recreational use (like beer and wine) which will benefit those who prefer it to alcoholic beverages.

YES on Amendment 2

YES to building a popular movement to END PROHIBITION NOW and LIBERATE/LEGALIZE HEMP & CANNABIS!

# # #

The Green Party of Florida (GPFL) is the Florida branch of the Green Party of the United States with affiliates in the counties of Alachua, Bay, Broward, Hernando, Miami-Dade, Orange, St. Pete, and Tampa.

Fight for $15 Heats Up in Miami

Miami Greens showed their colors Thursday in support of fast food workers demand for $15 an hour and the right to unionize at a spirited demonstration in North Miami Beach, held in the rain in front of a McDonald’s restaurant and across from Burger King. Similar demonstrations were held in some 150 cities organized by SEIU (Service Employees International Union) as part of a labor and wage justice movement spreading across America, spurred by the unanimous passage by Seattle’s city commission of a $15 an hour minimum wage ordinance on June 2nd.

Fast Food Strike NMB
Fast Food Strike NMB

Continue reading “Fight for $15 Heats Up in Miami”

Greens speak out in the wake of the police shooting in Ferguson

Press release from GPUS

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Green Party leaders and candidates are calling for the demilitarization of civilian U.S. police departments, asserting that military police tactics have created an “occupation mentality” in many communities.

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Greens said that abuses of police power and disregard for the lives of young black people were on display in the shooting of an unarmed black teenager by a white police officer, threats against reporters, and a display of force that turned peaceful protest into a violent confrontation in Ferguson, Missouri. Greens expressed support for the protesters.

“The murder of Michael Brown by officer Darren Wilson must be investigated and prosecuted aggressively, but the crisis won’t end with the punishment of an individual police officer,” said Howie Hawkins, Green candidate for governor of New York (http://www.howiehawkins.org). “Out-of-control police who respond to minor violations with overwhelming force, toleration of racist cops, siege-like conditions in some cities and city neighborhoods, and record-high incarceration – all of these are evidence of a growing police state.” (See Mr. Hawkins’ statement: “Ferguson, Militarization, Federal Jurisdiction in Police Brutality,” August 20, http://www.howiehawkins.org/ferguson_militarization_police_brutality) Continue reading “Greens speak out in the wake of the police shooting in Ferguson”

U.S. Women In Black: End U.S. Complicity in Israeli Occupation & War!

As stated on their website (http://www.womeninblack.org/en/vigil), Women in Black “is a world-wide network of women committed to peace with justice and actively opposed to injustice, war, militarism and other forms of violence.” Julia Aires, a founder of the Green Party of Florida, and former GPF co-chair, was also a founder (with Diane Kamleiter) of a Florida local WiB chapter, “Women in Black Gulfcoast.” Below is a statement co-authored by members of WiB Baltimore(MD), Union Square(NY) and Bay Area (CA).

U.S. Women In Black Say
U.S. Policy on Israel Must Change:
END U.S. COMPLICITY IN ISRAELI OCCUPATION AND WAR!

Israel’s massacre of Gaza civilians and massive destruction of homes, hospitals, schools and public works cannot be justified.  The most recent attacks on Gaza have killed and injured many thousands of women, children, and non-combatant men. This tiny, impoverished territory, which Israel first occupied and over which it continues to exercise virtually total military control, has been described as “the world’s largest open-air prison.” Closed borders make it impossible for civilians fleeing Israel’s bombings to escape. Israel’s previous attacks and ongoing violations of international law and Palestinian human rights have increased the suffering immeasurably. Continue reading “U.S. Women In Black: End U.S. Complicity in Israeli Occupation & War!”

Livestream – GPUS Annual Meeting

If you are unable to make it to the  GPUS National Meeting, you can watch via live video Stream. You can also participate by discussing the issues with Greens across the nation via text. Just click the link below.
Thursday July 24  at 5:00pm EDT thru Sunday July 27

http://www.livestream.com/greenpartyus

gpus livestream anm2014

Thank you Craig Seeman for sharing this on the GPFL Facebook page.