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Labor Day thoughts on why I'm running

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Andy Schmookler


By Andy Schmookler

This is Labor Day, the day we honor those who do the work in our nation. But for years, America's working people - far from being honored - have been trashed. Their pensions have been cut or eliminated; their jobs have been shipped overseas; their wages have fallen even while their companies flourish.

You may have noticed that the stock market is doing fine, while working people are doing not so well. For years in America, as the productivity of workers increased their wages climbed in tandem. But for more than a decade, that's stopped being true. Working people have stopped getting their fair share of the reward for their efforts. All the benefits of growth have been going to corporate profits.

We're told that corporations are people; but some seem to have forgotten that American workers really are people. They're not disposable units, but the life blood of our nation. They deserve better. All Americans deserve a fair shake.

That's just one reason why I'm running for our 6th District seat.

I'm surprised to find myself a political candidate. I'm 66 and have never run for public office. When I was 15, my Dad told me why I wasn't cut out to be a politician. Dad said, 'Andy, you're too straightforward. You insist on saying what you think. But that's not how things are in politics.' He was right.

That was a half century ago, and I've spent those 50 years looking for the truth about why some societies serve their people well and why others hurt them. In all those years, I never even thought about running for office. Until now.

Now, in America, the dishonesty in our politics has become so bad, with lies so often defeating the truth, that I figure now's the moment when truth-telling needs its champions. That's at the heart of why I'm running to replace Bob Goodlatte as the 6th District representative in Congress.

In the America I grew up in, our government helped to create a vibrant middle class, with measures like the G.I. Bill and protections for the rights of workers -- helping average Americans. Government can again be an instrument for the people, and America can truly be a land of opportunity for all Americans.

In the America I grew up in, our political leaders could work together on the basis of the values that we Americans share -- liberals and conservatives alike - to achieve our common purposes. We can again have a political system that practices civility and compromise, and does the people's business.

In the America I grew up in, there was a general respect for both liberal and conservative values. We can again be a nation with that kind of mutual respect, and recognition that we are all Americans.

I'm running now because I see the foundations of our American democracy under assault. We need government to be for the people, not just the rich and powerful. We need public servants who serve the public, not their own ambitions. We need leaders who put the good of the nation ahead of partisan advantage. And in our politics, we need the truth to defeat the lie.

I promise to tell you the truth, I promise to treat the good of every American as being just as important as that of the richest and most powerful. Please think about that on Election Day, because I keep my promises.

Andy Schmookler is the Democratic nominee for Congress in Virginia's 6th District.


14 Comments



Mr. Smookler,

I appreciate your commments re: the state of the nation. I agree.

I also think that Mr. Good latter has been doing a good job in regards to heling to try to correct the damage done to us by the ultra liberal congress in the past.

The current "Gridlock" that the president and his minions complain about is caused by the fiscal conservatives', many newly elected, refusing to participate in the liberal's big spending agenda. That is why they were elected. They are doing what their constituent have told them to do.

I'm sure you're a decent man, Mr. Schmookler, but the stink of Obama; his champion, Mr. Clinton; Ms. Pelosi, Mr. Reed and Mr. Holder's actions taint the Democratic party.

I cannot, in good conscience, vote for you.

Allen Peterson
Strasburg, VA

Mr. Smookler,

I appreciate your commments re: the state of the nation. I agree.

I also think that Mr. Goodlatte has been doing a good job in regards to helping to try to correct the damage done to us by the ultra liberal congress in the past.

The current "Gridlock" that the president and his minions complain about is caused by the fiscal conservatives', many newly elected, refusing to participate in the liberal's big spending agenda. That is why they were elected. They are doing what their constituent have told them to do.

I'm sure you're a decent man, Mr. Schmookler, but the stink of Obama; his champion, Mr. Clinton; Ms. Pelosi, Mr. Reed and Mr. Holder's actions taint the Democratic party.

I cannot, in good conscience, vote for you.

Allen Peterson
Strasburg, VA

Andy Schmookler you've got my vote! It's so refreshing to hear from someone who can articulate the problems we are facing today. Your video is inspiring and so unique that you call it like it is. I'm sick of all the twisted lies that get repeated over and over.

I hope there are enough people out there who still seek the TRUTH and will demand a debate between Schmookler and Goodlatte.

Goodlatte wants to effortlessly keep his "career" going while he does nothing (it has worked so far) but this time he has a real challenger. Bob Goodlatte needs to come out of hiding and debate Andy Schmookler.

What's Goodlatte afraid of? Maybe it's his voting record because he's not helping you or me. I've looked at it - have you? Get this guy off the gravy train! Let's get someone in there who will represent us!

The Republicans said, their goal was to make Obama "a one-term president" and regardless of what it has cost this country they have worked at it. Wake up America! Don't fall for their LIES! Watch the convention starting tonight, wish Andy were speaking there! He would be speaking to us not a chair.

The most insulting thing that Mr. Peterson's remarks did was to compel me to ask myself: 'What does he take me for?' Peterson's drivel assumes that every adult in the Shenandoah Valley is a completely illiterate jerk who would rather feel the hatred than think the truth.

No Republican at their convention stepped to the microphone and laid out a detailed plan how to recover the economy.

No Republican, in either the House or Senate, can deny they obstructed the legislative branch making any progress solving America's economic problems or facilitating conditions fundamental to the creation of jobs.

During their convention, Republicans offered plenty of slurs about abortion, Medicare, women's rights, immigration, welfare, Social Security, national security, education reform, discrimination, and voter rights. And now, thanks to Mr. Petersons smooth eloquence, we can add the adjective 'stink' to the list of slurs, decisively overstepping the bounds of civility by ignoring the politics of the moment.

Goodlatte's voting record is a testimony for his ideological bonding with the fiscal conservative fat cats whose unanimous confessed goal was to obstruct the Congress' duty to the American public and single-mindedly do everything to prevent President Obama from winning a second term, sacrificing quality of life for selfish political considerations.

Goodlatte cannot work to solve our problems because he IS the problem. He does not see what is coming.

I will step into the voting booth and cast my vote for Andy Schmookler, Barack Obama and Joe Biden, secure in the knowledge each will work for the best interests of ALL Americans, not just big business and wealthy robber barons.

Every once in a while, a political campaign or a political candidate bursts the constraints of 'ordinary,' business-as-usual routine and becomes recognizable as authentic. People differ over these magic moments.... There's always one infallible sign, however. The pundits and the political establishment never see it coming.

Complacent Goodlatte doesn't see his defeat coming.

I don't know what planet this guy is from. He sure knows nothing about goverment. Saying the Congress use to get along. He is nuts, they use to fight and shoot each other all the time. The only time they got together on anything is when there was a war and they were forced to.

If he is running because he sees the foundations of American democracy under assault, he surely picked the right party. The Democrats are leading the charge to destroy it....FOWARD COMRADES!

Dear Min Gent:

Despite the fact that I don't think your comments deserve anything more than the raspberries, I want to assure you that your efforts too read my mind have failed.

I hold the citizens of the Shenandoah Valley to be very intelligent and aware of the issues.

The final vote is all that matters. I'll gloat then.

You are correct, Allen P.

The Latter Day Hippies who have hijacked the modern Democratic Party are the ones who do not see defeat coming.

Most modern Republicans and Independents are former Democrats for good reason.

It is a matter of political ethos. The Dems revealed theirs with one line from the DNC video last night: "The government is the only thing that we all belong to."

Republicans hold the opposite view: The Constitution is the only thing that belongs to all of us.

Dear Allen P;
It is easy to believe no one has ever accused you of thinking or having a repertoire of self expression much beyond the singular distinction of the wonderful ability to produce raspberries. What is the probability you or D. Flathers jeopardize Regan's title of "The Great Communicator"?

A quote from Allen Peterson in his comment to Andy Schmookler's letter: "I also think that Mr. Goodlatte has been doing a good job in regards to helping to try to correct the damage done to us by the ultra liberal congress in the past."

Mr. Peterson, are you aware that during the 8 years of the George W. Bush presidency, we had the Bush Tax Cuts (that were unpaid-for), prescription drug plan (that was unpaid-for), two expensive wars (that were unpaid-for) and Mr. Goodlette and his fellow Republicans rubber-stamped every spending bill with no apparent regard at that time of what it was doing to the deficit and economy when they put it on the nation's "credit card". Sadly, we went from a surplus that Mr. Bush had at the end of President Clinton's term to a deficit at the end of President Bush's 8 years.

But suddenly, Mr. Goodlatte and the other Republicans seem to have had "an epiphany" once President Obama became president because all of a sudden these same Republicans who rubber-stamped every spending bill during the Bush presidency with no thought to what it was doing to the economy, became oh-so-concerned about spending after President Obama became president.

I would think also, that you must be quite upset with the Romney/Ryan/Republicans who want to solve our fiscal problems by first giving even more unpaid-for tax cuts weighed to the very high income among us. It appears the Republicans are busy thinking of their own "big spending agenda".

I enjoy reading the editorials and mostly the comments that follow. I have indulged myself more than normal with the elections coming on. One thing I find very ironic is that those that support the Democratic platform are mostly very articulate in their points and most often site verifiable facts. The ones that follow the Republican platform are usually not as articulate, use slang and insults quit frequently, and most importantly repeat ideology instead of facts. All of this decreases further as we get to the "Tea party" radicals as evidence above. "Grab yr guns spit out yr tabaca boys we gotta fight on our hands"

Oh and don't forget to grab your rebel flag!

I get a kick out out of the 2 youths driving there pickups in the woodstock to mt jackson area with there rebel flags flying off their pickups ( my roots run relativley deep in shenandoah county) They seem like young fellows, but I guarantee if they were ever confronted by some african americans, they might change there tune.

So you think that "Goodlate" that ran on a ticket of term limits who then ran from that ticket and is currently way past a term limit campaign is what we need? Sleep with yourself and Goodlate's lies tonight. Remember that is what his whole campaign was was, he stressed term limits, yet he is living the lie of his campaign. I do not vote for lies and hope anyone who does will die along with the lies.

OH how old are you that you forgot the only thing that the trash Goodlatte won the election on was his stand against term limits? Yet he is still there even though it is a LIE against his campaign trying to screw us all. Andy you have my vote and maybe the old guard can wake up to Goodlatte's lies to realize that it is time for the Good Old Boys to curl up and die. Goodlatte is the drought we have had in this valley for the last few years even if Allen is not mature enough to see the lies.



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