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Saturday, June 15, 2024

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Will People Become Extinct? 6-21-2006

By Jack Fichter

Will people disappear from this planet? Is there a sort of evolution taking place?
That’s the question Granny is asking. Who’s Granny? Doris “Granny D” Haddock, age 96, of New Hampshire, a lifelong activist and a former candidate for Congress.
In a speech on Memorial Day, she raised some interesting questions. If this world continues to be dominated by huge corporations, what future does mankind have?
Granny D asked, despite the facts of global warming and overdevelopment, is there an insistence of “staying the course of self destruction,” because it profits corporations in the short term?
“As a species, are we not waddling toward the cliff?” asked Granny D. “Why has no great leader stood upon the rock with sufficient persuasion to halt the march and save the day?”
“Is it evolution itself we are watching?” she continued. “Was our species automatically prewired for extinction, when there are, by God, more Washington lobbyists than tree frogs and with stickier fingers?”
Granny D refers to international corporations as “monstrous machines” that take apart small farms and family businesses on main street, and democracies here and there around the world “pushing people into cities and powerless poverty.”
“The great middle class employers like General Motors are purposely bankrupted by a behind-the-scenes elite, so that manufacturing might move to more profitable lands without unions and without legal protection for human beings,” she said.
Granny D said people are in a war against corporations “let loose.”
“You will see in your lifetime the outcome,” she warned.
Granny D raised her family during the Great Depression and worked in shoe factory for 20 years. She protested atomic bomb testing in Alaska in the 1960s.
After Sen. John McCain’s and Sen. Russ Feingold’s first attempt to remove unregulated “soft” money from campaigns was defeated in 1995, Granny D became interested in campaign reform and led a petition movement.
At the age of 89 on Jan. 1, 1999, she started a 3,200-mile walk across the country to demonstrate her concern for campaign reform. She walked 10 miles per day for 14 months, giving speeches along her route.
She did not “baby” herself walking through over 1,000 miles of deserts. Granny D climbed the Appalachian Range in blizzard conditions.
When a heavy snowfall blocked her way into Washington D.C., she skied the final 100 miles. There, she was met by 2,200 supporters including several dozen Congressmen.
Granny D walked again in 2003 and 2004, that time on a 23,000-mile tour of the swing states. She encouraged women and the residents of poor neighborhoods to register to vote.
She ran for U.S Senate in her home state when no one would challenge Republican Sen. Judd Gregg. She did not accept any contributions from political action committees. She lost but the campaign reform bill won.
Has anyone else heard of Granny D?
Former President Jimmy Carter called Granny D “a true patriot.”
“I believe she represents all that is good in America,” said McCain.
Granny D is worried about the course this nation is following.
“People seem happy to vote for those who do everything possible to export their jobs, give their common wealth to the already too-wealthy, and undermine their social safety net programs, their right to organize, right to privacy, and on and on,” said Granny D in a speech at Clarion University in 2004.
Of our elected legislators, Granny D said a flood of special interest money has carried them away and all that is left of them, “at least for those of us who do not write $100,000 checks-are the shadows of their cardboard cutouts.”
She said if you doubt that, write them a letter and see what rubber stamped drivel you get back.
You better listen to your granny. You can see Granny D speak by going to www.truthout.org. click on multimedia, and select a film clip called “Almost Level, West Virginia,” a video from Rebecca MacNeice.
The clip looks at the destruction of mountaintops by lumber and mining companies.
I am reading a book she wrote in 2003 called “Granny D: You’re Never Too Old to Raise a Little Hell.”
In the book’s forward, Bill Moyers said, “The rich have every right to buy more cars, more homes, more clothes, more vacations and more gizmos than anyone else; but they do not have the right to buy more democracy.”

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