Batch's Blog

Nathanial Batchelder (click image to read news and views from Peace House OK's Director, Nathaniel Batchelder)

President Obama asks YOUR help; have YOU acted?


In this week’s weekly address, President Obama restated his request from his news conference last Wednesday: “I ask Congress to pass quickly legislation protecting all income below $250,000 from any tax increase now or in 2013. … The Senate has passed this legislation, and House Democrats stand ready to do so IF enough Republicans will join in supporting it.”

Contact Oklahoma House members AGAIN urging them to “Protect the Middle Class” by passing this legislation. Let them hear from tens of thousands of Oklahomans.

(here are email, telephone, and fax contacts)

U.S. Representatives (OK)
Dist 1: John Sullivan (Tul)
DC Tel: (202) 225-2211
DC Fax: (202) 225-9187
Tulsa ofc: (918) 749-0014

Dist 2: Dan Boren (Musk)
DC Tel: (202) 225-2701
DC Fax: (202) 225-3038
Muskogee: (918) 687-2533

Dist 3: Frank Lucas (W. OKC)
DC Tel: (202) 225-5565
DC Fax: (202) 225-8698
OKC Ofc: (405) 373-1958

Dist 4: Tom Cole (Nrm & S.)
DC Tel: (202) 225-6165
DC Fax: (202) 225-3512
Norman Ofc: (405) 329-6500

Dist 5: James Lankford (OKC & surrounds)
DC Tel: (202) 225-2132
DC Fax: (202) 226-1463
OKC Ofc: (405 234-9900

America voted overwhelmingly for Barack Obama, and 60% of Americans support this legislation to “Protect the Middle Class with a guarantee of no new taxes”.

WILL YOU ACT … or stand by while the 1% blocks this legislation!?!?!?!

Please take action. America needs your input.

2012 Peace Festival in pictures

It was a great event. Thank you to all the volunteers, sponsors and attendees!

Word on the street: No War on Iran

Batch waves to drivers passing by during the “No War on Iran” demonstration on Friday, Nov. 11.



Peace House Director Nathaniel Batchelder joined other Oklahomans to say “No War on Iran” at a demonstration near Penn Square Mall on Friday, Nov. 2.  For more info about the local effort to prevent another costly and unnecessary war in the Middle East, see the web site

November-December 2012 issue of Peace Strategy News published and available online

In this issue:

  • Honoring the life of George McGovern
  • Renewable Energy Oklahoma
  • US/NATO munitions causing birth defects in Iraq
  • What’s in those tax shelters?
  • Action Alerts
  • and more

Action for Garry Allen Clemency (“Stop this Execution”)

Monday, Nov 5, 3:00 pm, State Capitol 2nd Floor Rotunda

The PURPOSE of this RALLY is to present the varied and strong rationales for the governor to exercise her authority to grant clemency for this 56 year old, African American, son, father, grandfather, brother, uncle, mentally ill man who has been on death row for 25 years and faced his execution dates three previous times.

The death penalty, according to the governments’ stated standards, is to be reserved for the worst of capital murderers. The Supreme Court has prohibited use of the death penalty for murder in two types of limited culpability: Juveniles and Mentally Retarded. They have not yet addressed mental illness. It is an acknowledged fact that Garry Allen has serious mental health issues, presently, and at the time of the murder. His attorneys, supporters, family & OK-CADP believe that his limited mental capacity renders him not culpable.

Allen was first scheduled to be executed May 19, 2005. A stay of execution was granted one day before this scheduled execution. He was scheduled for execution the second time for Feb. 16, 2012. A conservative Pardon & Parole Board voted 4-1 to recommend Clemency-Life w/out Parole to Governor Henry who didn’t act on the recommendation. Governor Fallin denied that clemency recommendation and set April 12, 2012 as his third date for execution. With legal appeals exhausted, only the Governor’s courage to step beyond “tough on crime” with compassion to grant mercy can stop Mr. Allen’s execution at 6 pm on Election Day-Nov 6, 2012.

Enough is enough. He has suffered enough cruel & unusual punishment. Our plea is to let him live out his life behind bars where his family can visit him until his natural death.

Attend the Rally– Call the Governor—521-2342
FAX the Governor – 521-3353
Write the Governor—2300 N Lincoln, Suite 212, OKC, 73105

Co-sponsored by NAACP and Oklahoma Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty (OK-CADP) for Garry Thomas Allen and his family

Recommendations on the six state questions (and judges)

This year the ballot will contain six state questions for voters to weigh in on.

Consulted groups included the OK Policy Institute, The Oklahoma Observer, State Parties, and individuals.

Quick Summary:

  • Vote “Yes” on #762 to remove the Governor from the Pardon & Parole Board process on nonviolent crimes.
  • Vote “No” on the other five questions (but check on #764 below).

#758 – Lowers the cap on annual increases in taxable value of homestead property and agricultural lands from 5% to 3%. But this adversely affects state funding of public schools, so a “No” vote is recommended.

#759 – Would repeal Oklahoma’s Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity statutes that have helped to level the playing field for women and minorities in state contracting, hiring, and selection of students, so a “No” vote is recommended to save affirmative action. (The language of S.Q. 759 implies that women and minorities are receiving “preferred treatment”. This is false, as Oklahoma’s statute encourages, but does not mandate, equal treatment. There are no quotas, mandates, or set-asides for women and minorities.

#762 – Would remove the Governor from the Pardon and Parole Board process on nonviolent crimes. Any Governor is loathe to agree to recommendations for paroles out of fear that the parolee might commit a crime and they would be blamed. Removing the Governor from the process allows the P&P Board to act more freely. Governor Fallin supported this measure until her Party objected to it. A “Yes” vote is recommended.

#764 – Gives the Oklahoma Water Resource Board (OWRB) authority to issue bonds to be used to create a reserve fund to be used as a last resort if a municipality defaulted on a loan and all other reserve funds had been depleted. (The opinion of Oklahoma Observer Editor Arnold Hamilton is that the OWRB answers to the prompting of the State Chamber of Commerce and Oklahoma City’s “downtown elite”. The use of some $300 million annually is at stake and The Oklahoma Observer opposes giving the OWRB this power. NOTE THAT THE SIERRA CLUB RECOMMENDS A “YES” VOTE, believing S.Q.764 could lead to more water conservation. Vote as your conscience dictates.

#765 – A Constitutional Amendment doing away with the current structure of the Department of Human Services (DHS) and giving the Governor the authority to select the director of DHS. Currently, selection of the director of DHS and oversight of DHS operations is by a commission. No other state authorizes the Governor to select the director of Human Services. Advocates believe this measure threatens DHS operations by making it as political as the Governor’s appointee. A “No” vote is recommended.

#766 – This question eliminates property tax on all intangible property instead of just some intangible property. Intangibles include trademarks, trademark slogans, customer relations, and other issues. Estimates are that this would reduce state funding to public schools by $50 million or more annually. A “No” vote is recommended.

ON THE JUDGES (We vote to “retain” or “dismiss” 12 or 13 Judges)

Attorney Doug Parr knows the ins and outs of Judge selection. He said judges are almost always “retained” with 70% of the vote. Very hard to “dismiss” any Judge. Attorneys I have consulted had no major “red flags” on any of the Judges on the ballots. Follow your own information and conscience.

My “Commentary” in this week’s Oklahoma Gazette

I sent this “Vote For Peace” Commentary a month ago, and gave up hope. But, Hooray, it’s in.

It’s posted on this site here. The Gazette retitled it “Voting for Peace

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