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About Mike Beilstein
Press release, August 28, 2014
Mike Beilstein Candidate for US Congress, 4th District, Oregon
I am the Pacific Green Party candidate for Congress in the Oregon 4th Congressional District, nominated at the state convention on June 7. I will represent to voters the core Green values of sustainability, social justice, nonviolence and democratic participation. A particular concern to Greens, and to voters, in this election is the worsening climate crisis. Global warming, ocean acidification, loss of historic glaciers, mass extinction of species, proliferation of wars to acquire or protect resources are all symptoms of a human economy that we can not rely on to maintain human life into the future. Participation of Greens in the election broadens the debate and gives voters a chance to register their support for “green” values.
CARBON FEE and DIVIDEND (CF&D)
I and the Pacific Green party promote federal legislation and international treaties to impose a “carbon fee and dividend” (CF&D) as proposed by Citizens Climate Lobby . The program would collect a fee on all carbon fuels at the point of extraction or import. The fee would start low, at $15 per ton of carbon, and increase annually by $10 per ton until changes in the economy reduced carbon emissions to a sustainable level. The collected fee would be returned to citizens on a per capita basis. Most citizens would receive a dividend larger than their increased costs due to the energy fee. This “internalizes” the cost of dumping carbon dioxide waste into the atmosphere, which until now has been an “externalized” cost to producers and consumers. The CF&D does not dictate how the economy should change to adapt to the fee, but it creates an incentive toward greater efficiency. More efficient construction, manufacturing, agriculture, transportation, and home climate control would be rewarded once producers and consumers are required to pay for carbon emissions.
Growing economic disparity is destroying the traditional American middle class. Green solutions include a livable minimum wage of $15 per hour; federal rules that facilitate unionization of all workers, especially in agricultural; transaction fees on securities to limit speculative investment; international trade rules that prohibit import of the products of slave labor; free universal public education through university graduate school – an end to tuition and forgiveness of existing student debt; and universal comprehensive health care through a single payer insurance system.
As Martin Luther King, Jr. said in 1966, our country has become the greatest purveyor of violence in the world. Approximately half of international arms exports originate from the US. The federal government should severely restrict this death market. Similarly as the greatest market for illegal drugs, the US promotes violent criminal activity in Latin America, especially on our southern border. The “war on drugs” has created the largest criminal internment system in the world. All “illegal” drug use needs to be decriminalized. Addiction should be treated as a health care issue, not criminalized. The US should be extremely reluctant to conduct military interventions. Congress should prevent such acts in the absence of a declaration of war. A Green member of Congress would never vote to increase the military/surveillance budget.
As a regular visitor to Cuba I am sensitive to several issues that do not get adequate attention by US media and citizens. I support normalization of relations with Cuba and an end to the cold war hangover of the US imposed trade and travel ban. I intend to visit Cuba in defiance of the travel ban every year until it is ended.
The US is conducting a vigorous economic war against Cuba. Since 1962 the US has prohibited US banks from doing business in Cuba, however since 1992, the US has asserted the right to prevent foreign banks from working in Cuba. Following the 2007 global economic collapse the consolidation of financial institutions has reduced the number of banks that finance international trade to a handful. The US Office of Foreign Assets Control has vigorously pursued civil proceedings in US courts against international banks that finance Cuban trade. Billion dollar settlements have forced banks to choose between operating in the US and Cuba. It gets harder and harder for Cuba to find banks to finance trade. The US financial boycott is turning into an economic blockade.
The US maintains a list of state sponsors of terrorism that includes Cuba, Sudan, Syria and Iran. Cuba has allowed US and European investigators to pursue alleged relations with the revolutionary FARC of Colombia and the Spanish Basque separatist group ETA. No evidence of financial or other support for these groups was discovered. On the other hand, three of five Cuban agents arrested in 1997 in Miami for investigating US sponsored terrorism against Cuba are still in US jails. Former CIA operative Luis Posada Carilles, who admits to planting a bomb on a Cubana airline in 1976 that killed 67 people, lives freely in Miami, protected from extradition to Venezuela where he faces murder charges. So who is the real state sponsor of terrorism?
CORVALLIS CITY COUNCIL
I have served for 10 years on the Corvallis City Council. I intend to run for City Council at the same time that I am a candidate for US Congress. I have an opponent, Judson McClure, but I expect to win the Council race. If I should win both races, or lose both races, I will deal with it.
I experienced a gradual change in the tenor of the Council since I first served in 1999. There is greater concern about fiscal responsibility and willingness to reduce services to maintain a healthy bottom line. Along with this fiscal sense there is less willingness to raise City revenue. I think a lot of our early momentum on sustainability was lost because of reductions in staffing in public works in the 2012 budget. The adoption of a growth oriented economic development policy and establishment of the Enterprise Zone in Benton County were steps in the wrong direction. I will continue to speak out against the outmoded concept of boosterism as economic development as I encounter it on the Council, and I will work to educate my fellow Councilors on economics. Economic development should focus on increasing equity and efficiency, not growth.
My major goals are to establish a more sustainable local economy by providing adequate housing for people who work and attend school in Corvallis, reduce commuting, develop all components of a local food system, maintain high quality accessible services through the Library and Parks and Recreation, and promote a sustainable transportation system that emphasizes walking, biking and transit.
PACIFIC GREEN CANDIDATES and MEASURE ENDORSEMENTS
The PGP is fielding two statewide candidates, Justin Levin for Governor and Christina Lugo for US Senate. There are Green candidates in 3 of the 5 US Congressional Districts – Steven Reynolds in District 1, Michael Meo in 3, and Mike Beilstein in 4. Art Krueger is the Green candidate for State Senate District 3 in Jackson County and Ralph Forest-Bell for State Senate District 7 in Marion County. Alex Polikoff is the Green candidate for House District 23 which includes rural Benton County and Polk County, and Joshua Smith in District 25 in Marion County.
The Pacific Green Party endorses a yes vote on measures 91 (marijuana legalization) and Measure 92 (GMO labeling). The PGP opposes Measure 90 (top two primary).
I have great respect for both Art Robinson and Peter DeFazio. There is also a Libertarian candidate in the 4th District race, David L. Chester. I look forward to meeting him, but know nothing of him now. I have no doubt that Peter DeFazio will be re-elected to the US Congress. He is well liked in the 4th District and he has the advantage of incumbency. I often say that of all the progressive Democrats in the US Congress, Peter DeFazio is the best and we are lucky to have him as our representative. However, Peter DeFazio is not a Green. If he were, he would be more careful about voting for foreign wars. In 3 of 11 congressional votes on supplemental military funding for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, DeFazio voted with the majority for the funding. DeFazio co-sponsored a bill with Greg Walden to open up the O&C Forests to logging without environmental restraints. The proposal was so bad that even president Obama said he would veto it if passed, which it didn’t. A toned down version of the same proposal is now being proposed by Senator Wyden. Peter DeFazio is very committed to investment in the nation’s transportation infrastructure. This is admirable, but there is too much focus on increasing highway and automobile transportation. Development of rail and transit should be the focus of US transportation policy.
Web page: http://www.newmenu.org/mikebeilstein Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Phone: 541 754 1858 (h); 541 602 1007 (c)
Mailing Address: Mike Beilstein for Congress
1214 NW 12th St
Corvallis, OR 97330
Why Vote For Mike Beilstein:
Candidate’s Statement for Mike Beilstein - Oregon 4th Congressional District
Occupation: Chemist, retired
1978 to 2007 – research chemist at Oregon State University.
1977 to 1978 – research chemist, Johns Hopkins University
1976 to1977 – research chemist, Medical College of Virginia
1973 to 1975 – US Peace Corps, teacher in Lesotho, Southern Africa
MA (1989), home economics, Oregon State University
BA (1973), biochemistry, Oregon State University
Prior Government Experience:
Corvallis City Council, 1999-2000, 2007-2014
We are far over the “safe” target of 350 ppm atmospheric carbon dioxide.
Producers and consumers need to start paying for the environmental costs of dumping CO2 into the air. The “carbon fee and dividend” approach will internalize the costs of CO2 pollution, and create incentives for appropriate energy technology. This is a practical GREEN solution to a civilization threatening problem.
The PACIFIC GREEN PARTY is not about protest or radical environmentalism. It is about practical solutions that benefit everyone in creating a sustainable and just global society.
• Stop using the military to enrich oil companies at the cost of thousands of lives and trillions of dollars.
• Single payer national health system. Comprehensive community based care.
• Fund education that develops our full potential. Eliminate tuition. Forgive student debt.
• De-emphasizes the single-passenger automobile. Invest in rail and transit.
• Decriminalize drug use. Provide appropriate medical treatment for addicts.
• Eliminate small arms exports that fuel global violence.
• Support the right of all workers to organize. $15 per hour minimum wage. Stop trading with countries that practice slavery. Full rights for immigrant workers.
• Protect Oregon forests. No give-aways to lumber barons. Protect federal and state forests to ensure endangered salmon recovery and clean drinking water.
• Enforce environmental and safety rules. End the ecological disasters created by unregulated fossil fuel companies. No fracking. No mountaintop removal coal mining.
• Build an economy that meets human needs. Help the wealthy re-invest in a better society for all.
The need for Green leadership in Oregon and the USA is more urgent each day.
Vote Peace! Vote Green!
Contact Mike Beilstein
Mike Beilstein for Congress
1214 NW 12th St
Corvallis, Oregon 97330
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