Organizing Notes

Bruce Gagnon is coordinator of the Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power in Space. He offers his own reflections on organizing and the state of America's declining empire....

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Location: Bath, Maine, United States

Friday, March 05, 2010

TALKING WIND


Wind power is a big issue here in Maine. We have lots of wind on the scenic mountain tops and off-shore. Large wind power companies are wanting to build wind farms throughout the state and lately some environmentalists have been fighting to stop some of the proposed wind farms saying that they would destroy pristine natural places.

On March 18 there is going to be a wind power forum in Brunswick, Maine (at the Frontier Cafe - 7 pm) and I have been asked to moderate it. Speaking will be folks from both sides of the issue.

Former Maine Governor Angus King is now one of the leading proponents of off-shore wind power. Peter Woodruff is a BIW worker who wants to see the naval shipyard transition to building wind turbines. State Rep. Peter Kent is talking about the jobs that could be created working in the wind industry.

On the other side are Green Party members Jonathan Carter and Lynne Williams who oppose the big industrial wind farms and feel that communities are being shut out of the decision making process when it comes to deciding where wind turbines will be placed. Concerned citizen Joanne Moore feels that wind turbines are not so grand after all and can have serious impacts on health and peace of mind for those who live nearby the gigantic turbines.

It should be an interesting event. I will have to work hard to keep the forum moving in a positive direction and making sure everyone has a fair chance to speak their piece. In the end the public has much to learn and hopefully the event will give us all much to think about afterward.

Thursday, March 04, 2010

TIME FOR REAL INVESTIGATION


Richard Gage on KMPH Fox 26 in Fresno, CA in 2009. This mainstream media outlet did some real journalism.

Gage has been interviewed by media all over the world in the last couple years and very credible activists are helping him spread his message.

How can anyone not support the call for a real investigation of 9-11?

See the web site of Architects and Engineers for 9-11 Truth here

AFTER THE EMPIRE FALLS - WILL BE A BETTER DAY

ELLSBERG ON OBAMA


Daniel Ellsberg, one of my heroes.

LOCAL SCHOOL BOARD PASSES WAR $$ RESOLUTION

Last night we saw the first school board in Maine (MSAD #74 serving Solon, Embden, Anson and New Portland) pass a resolution to Bring our War $$ Home by a vote of 9-4. This is a big step forward that could possibly open opportunities to other school boards in the state taking the same action.

On top of that we now have 17 members of the state legislature that have signed a letter to our two members of Congress from Maine asking them to vote against further war funding. See that here

1960's icon Angela Davis spoke at nearby Bowdoin College last night so I handed out war $$ leaflets in the crowd. Lots of "I used to be active in the 60's" type folks there. What they are doing these days remains a mystery but at least for one night they got a leaflet and listened to a person speak who remains a strong radical. Davis is a good role model for them.

It was our goal here in Maine to make the war $$ issue come alive in local communities across the state. That is happening now as people are finding ways to take our concerns into many different corners of Maine. It is really exciting to see so many things happening and to know that many people are hearing about Bring Our War $$ Home.

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

JUST A MOM

Tuesday, March 02, 2010

MONEY FOR WAR


Kucinich announces introduction of Privileged Resolution to End Afghan War. He also will launch an on-line petition requesting the U.S. Congress to stop funding additional troops in Afghanistan.

Obama is expected to seek another $33 billion war spending supplemental this spring.

How will your member of Congress vote on the Kucinich resolution and the war spending supplemental?

It's your money........

DEER ISLE, MAINE - FIRST IN THE NATION

Deer Isle, Maine is a beautiful place for many reasons. One of them is obvious. The other maybe less so. At their annual town hall meeting Deer Isle citizens have just become the first community in the nation to vote in favor of a resolution calling on Congress to Bring Our War $$ Home.

Our friend Dud Hendrick, who is also the president of Maine Veterans for Peace, reports that his town has just voted by a margin of 67% in favor of the resolution. Dud recalls that, "After the announcement was made, the moderator -- a notorious conservative who has no use for our politics, quoted Thomas Jefferson, to the effect that this was an exercise of fundamental democracy -- citizens coming together to discuss important issues -- a startling observation."

There is a saying around here that goes like this - as Maine goes, so goes the nation.

Let the people be given the chance to speak out on this issue of endless war and the drain of our resources. There is no doubt in my mind that the public indeed supports the call to bring our war $$ home. Let the organizing flourish to give voice to the people!

Thank you Deer Isle.

Monday, March 01, 2010

WORKING ON THE WALK ROUTE

The Walk for a Nuclear Free Future (Ninth Annual Walk for a New Spring) is fast approaching. I've already begun to map some of the route and Tom Kircher is helping to map parts of the walk route from Portland south. Tomorrow I will drive to Bethel, Maine where the walk will enter our state on March 24 after having begun in Vermont and passed through New Hampshire.

I volunteered to coordinate the walk during the time it will be in Maine from March 24 - April 1. It now appears that we have found places for the walkers to stay each night along the journey and also people to coordinate pot luck suppers each night.

So the schedule is:

- Bethel to Norway on March 24 (Supper and program at UU Church at 6:00 pm - Tom Whitney local contact)

- Norway to Lewiston on March 25 (Supper and program at Trinity Episcopal Church at 6:00 pm - Fr. Steve Crowson local contact)

- Lewiston to Bath on March 26 (Supper and program at UCC church at 6:00 pm - Bruce Gagnon local contact)

- Bath to Brunswick on March 27 (Supper and program at UU church at 6:00 pm - Selma Sternlieb local contact)

- Brunswick to Freeport on March 28 (Supper and program First Parish Congregational Church at 6:00 pm - Bob Lezer local contact)

- Freeport to Portland on March 29 (Supper and program Meg Perry Center at 6:00 pm - Wells Staley Mays local contact)

- Day off on March 30

- Portland to Saco on March 31 (Supper and program UCC church at 6:00 pm - Tom/Jane Kircher local contacts)

- Saco to Kennebunk (noon lunch along the walk) on April 1 (Jamilla El-Shafaie local contact)


I am still looking for a pickup truck with a topper on it to haul walker gear during the week in Maine.

Doug Rawlings who teaches at University of Maine-Farmington reports that some of his students want to come and walk for a day. Many people will join the walk here and there as it passes through their community. The key now is to spread word about the walk in Maine.

If you've never done a walk before you won't want to miss the experience. If you have walked before I know you will be itching to listen to the drum and the chanting again from the Nipponzan Myohoji Buddhist monks and nuns who will lead the walk.

From Maine the walk will head south and arrive in New York City on May 1 as the United Nations begins its review of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.

All together four peace walks from different parts of the country will head to NYC. The walks will help focus attention on the insanity of continuing the nuclear arms race and the enormous waste of resources that could otherwise be spent on education, health care, and building alternatives to fossil fuel energy production.

Get your walking shoes ready.

GREAT OVERVIEW ON SPACE ISSUES


Loring Wirbel (Citizens for Peace in Space from Colorado Springs) speaks at Pacific Life Community conference on "Thinking Outside the Bomb," in Jemez Springs, New Mexico on Feb. 27, 2010.

Part 1 covers modern military strategy and the new Strategic Triad.

Loring is one of the key leaders in the Global Network.

See Part 2 here

Sunday, February 28, 2010

LIVING THE SPIRITUAL WAY


Floyd Red Crow Westerman talks about the consequences of the white man's way of living.

Westerman reminds us that we are all one family, that we are all one spirit....all things are related.

What we do to the water and the trees comes back to haunt us.