Cancer, War and Politics? | Freyne Land

Bernie Sanders
Cancer, War and Politics?


For those who at one time or another have felt the desire to “stick it in my ear,” I offer this shot of Nurse Colleen from Graniteville doing just that yesterday up at the Mary Fanny, aka Fletcher Allen Health Care.

Busy day in Cancerville. There are four four-chair sections, two nurses per section, and, I’m told, a room with three more chairs.

“Chairs” are where "it," i.e. $$$, is at. That’s where folks park their butts while getting the chemo fed into them intravenously. Time is money. My butt was in the chair for more than six hours getting five different drugs. The others were occupied as well. There are individual little cable TVs that come out of the wall, but not many viewers yesterday. Lot's of chit-chat. On my sixth tour, I'm quite the chemo veteran now.

Outpatient chemotherapy is a booming business. And baby-boomers are a booming market, make no mistake about that.

Ah, life! What’s it all about?

This morning I woke with that ol’ nausea feeling I haven’t felt since my John Power Irish Whiskey days. Actually, this one couldn’t hold a candle to the whiskey one.

No problemo.

It’s a beautiful morning, another fantastic avian symphony here in Five Sisters Land, and the Doc says we’ll take a CAT scan in two weeks and see if the drugs are continuing to shrink what’s left of my non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma tumor. Was fist-sized in January. Now teeny-weeny, about 3-4 cm.

Hey, things could be a whole lot worse. I could be in one of the military units on King George “WMD” Bush’s list for shipment to Iraq?

To fight for:

a. oil companies like Exxon-Mobil
b. oil company stockholders
c. defense contractors like Haliburton and GE
d. their stockholders
e. other



Vermont’s lone congressman certainly appears in synch with the majority of his constituents this week.  Democrat Rep. Peter Welch put the word out yesterday:

"I am deeply disappointed that there is no deadline for troop withdrawal in this bill and will therefore vote against it."

Washington, D.C. - Rep. Peter Welch issued the following statement announcing his opposition to the conference report for the Iraq war supplemental.  He will vote against the Iraq funding legislation when it reaches the floor later this week.

...Welch has measured each bill on the Iraq war based on whether it would hasten or delay an end to the war.   He has cited that, for his support, any legislation must impose strict accountability on President Bush and Iraqi leaders, revoke the President's blank check, and include a timetable to end the war:

"I am deeply disappointed that there is no deadline for troop withdrawal in this bill and will therefore vote against it.  Regrettably, the President continues to stubbornly dig in his heels and cling to a failed policy.  He has led this country into a catastrophic foreign policy failure and he continues to thumb his nose at retired generals, the will of the majority of Congress, and the majority of the American people.

"While I am profoundly disappointed, I remain determined to end this war.  This vote will not be the final say.  Regrettably, the President continues to isolate himself on this war.  The day of reckoning for this President is coming as more and more members of his own party find their voices and demand a change in course.  I have great hope that in the coming months a veto-proof majority emerges in Congress that can stand up to the President to end this terrible war."

Not Good Enough?

Welchie’s "no" vote on the latest Iraq War funding bill is too-little, too-late for a couple of the folks who’ve organized Vermont’s statewide “Impeach Bush & Cheney” Campaign.

"This bill, that has the support of Democratic Party leaders Pelosi and Reid, funds the war without any limits,” said Iraq War veteran Adrienne Kinne. "The Iraqis want this occupation to end. The American people want our soldiers home now. I fear Peter Welch's no vote is too little too late. Peter Welch has been going along with that failed Democratic Party leadership for too long, and this terrible bill is the result."

"We call on Peter Welch to speak out against the Democratic Party leadership that talks peace and makes war," said Kinne. "We call on Peter Welch, Patrick Leahy, and Bernie Sanders to initiate investigation of Bush and Cheney, not just underlings like Alberto Gonzalez."

"This bill, sponsored by the Democratic Party leadership, forces us to ask how Peter Welch and Pat Leahy can remain in a party that accepted Bush and Cheney's demands to fund the war without any meaningful conditions," said James Marc Leas. "A party that talks peace but makes war has lost credibility. Peter Welch and Patrick Leahy can do much more to end this war if they stop supporting a pro-war party. Just as Jim Jeffords left the Republican Party, Peter Welch and Patrick Leahy should leave the Democratic Party."

A radical suggestion?

Check this:


That’s what political pundit/author/columnist and former Bernie Sanders’ press secretary David Sirota writes:

“Bottom line - if the Democrats do not vote down the blank check Iraq War supplemental bill they are proposing, they will be complicit in the war, and should expect to feel the consequences.”

For the whole shebang, hit the Sirota link in our political blog roll - column right.