The Green Beer Party

By David Swanson

The tea and coffee parties have cornered the market on vacuous meanness and niceness, respectively.  But brownbagging is where the substance and sustenance are.  Every third Wednesday of the month, those who want war defunded and everything useful funded are bringing brown bag lunches to vigil at their congress member’s local office.  This month that means March 17th, St. Patrick’s Day.  And that means more than food: Kicking off the Green Beer Party.

President Obama wants yet another $33 billion for wars next month.  Congress is expected to vote in April or May.  If the U.S. House of Representatives votes No on war funding, war ends.  Wars have been ended this way before. A majority of the full House is 218. With all the Republicans likely to vote No on the $33 billion, we only need 40 Democrats.  In June 2009, 202 voted No but most of them had unrelated motivations. In December 2009, 34 voted No.  We should reward them

Here’s a flyer on ending the war in Afghanistan: PDF.  Here’s how to step up your activism.  Here’s what’s needed instead of bombs and guns.  Here’s a way to nonviolently resist. You should build a campaign in your state like this one in Maine. And sign up to join the midday brown bag vigil in front of every congressional office in the country on the 3rd Wednesday of the month: sign up! Tired of teabagging?  Try brownbagging! Print out posters to bring!

Facts you can use: Here’s who is suffering.  A report from the National Priorities Project (PDF) contains on pages 23 and 24 documentation of how investing in the military reduces jobs and hurts the economy.  Get cost of war to your area here, but multiply it by five. Get the cost of military contracts to your area here.  Get the amount of money military companies have given your (mis-)representative here.  Where U.S. public opinion is and where it’s moving.

Try an AVATAR Awakening.  The Oscars don’t know everything!

Pass a local resolution.

Hold a drawathon.

Here’s a list of top targets and multiple ways to contact them.

You can post an ever-changing chart tracking congress members’ actions and commitments on your own website. Here’s the code. Or just help update the chart here: http://defundwar.org

Please sign the petition and watch the video at http://rethinkafghanistan.com and watch this video.

Please phone your Representative at (202) 224-3121 and ask them to commit to voting No on war funding, and post at http://defundwar.org what they tell you. 

Or ask them to support Congressman Dennis Kucinich’s resolution to end the war in Afghanistan, which comes up for a vote this Wednesday.  Once they thus pretend to want to end that war, you may have an easier time forcing them to agree to stop funding it.

Thanks!

And Mrs McGrath thanks you

Now, Mrs McGrath, the captain said,
Would you like to make a soldier out of your son Ted?
With a scarlet coat and a big cocked hat,
Now Mrs McGrath, wouldn’t you like that?

Wi your too-ri-aa, folly diddle-aa
Too-ri, oo-ri, oo-ri-aa
Wi your too-ri-aa, folly diddle-aa
Too-ri, oo-ri, oo-ri-aa.

Now Mrs McGrath lived on the seashore
For the space of seven long years or more,
Till she saw a ship sail into the bay,
Says, It’s my son Ted, will you clear the way,

Wi your too-ri-aa, folly diddle-aa . . .

Oh captain, dear, where have you been,
Have you been sailing in the Mediterranean,
And have you any news of my son Ted,
Is the poor boy alive or is he dead?

Wi your too-ri-aa, folly diddle-aa . . .

Well, up comes Ted, without any legs,
And in their place he’s got two wooden pegs.
She kissed him a dozen times or two,
Saying, Holy God, it isn’t you,

Wi your too-ri-aa, folly diddle-aa . . .

Now was you drunk, or was you blind,
When you left your two fine legs behind,
Or was it walking on the sea,
Wore your two fine legs from the knees away?

Wi your too-ri-aa, folly diddle-aa . . .

No, I wasn’t drunk, and I wasn’t blind
When I left my two fine legs behind,
But a big cannon ball on the fifth of May,
Took me two fine legs from the knees away,

Wi your too-ri-aa, folly diddle-aa . . .

Oh Teddy, my boy, the widow cried,
Your two fine legs were your mammy’s pride.
The stumps of a tree won’t do at all,
Why didn’t you run from the big cannon ball?

Wi your too-ri-aa, folly diddle-aa . . .

All foreign wars, I do proclaim,
Between Don Juan and the King of Spain,
And I’ll make them rue the time,
They took two legs from a child of mine,

Wi your too-ri-aa, folly diddle-aa . . .

Well then, if I had you back again,
I’d never let you go to fight the King of Spain,
For I’d rather have me Ted as he used to be,
Than the King of France and his whole navy,

Wi your too-ri-aa, folly diddle-aa . . .

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