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

Monday, February 13, 2012

EXCITING LOCAL WORK IN MAINE



  • It was a busy weekend here. On Saturday we held our statewide meeting of the Maine Campaign to Bring Our War $$ Home. We decided to organize a rally inside the state capital in Augusta on March 20 from 2:00-4:00 pm. Since college basketball has a big thing called "March Madness" we decided to call our rally Marching Against Fiscal Madness: Fund Human Needs. I've put the call out to artists to design us a graphic of our rotund Gov. LePage in a tight-fitting basketball uniform with the team name Big Shots and $$ on the jersey instead of a number. Can't wait to put it on our flyer.


  • Last night Occupy Brunswick held a public meeting at the local library that was attended by 75 people. Many new faces were there. We broke up into 10 small groups to get feedback on what we should do next. Lots of good ideas emerged. One that I was particularly impressed with was that we should organize local citizens forums to give Mr. & Mrs. Average the chance to publicly talk about their current financial struggles. We could hold them in various local towns. Very exciting.


  • Everywhere I go these days I am talking about the need to keep "connecting the dots". Corporate domination of the political system is at the core of most of our collective problems today. The old business model of organizing where each group goes at it alone with their relatively isolated constituency is playing a losing game. We must step up our efforts to work together across organizational lines if we hope to be able to create the kind of momentum to push back against the increasingly mean-spirited politics being aimed at all of us. There is no substitute for smart organizing. Anything else is a waste of our energies and precious resources. Not saying that activists shouldn't still work on their primary issues but that we have to learn how to integrate our work into the larger framework. We can thank the Occupy movement for helping folks see the light and the value in working in unison. About time for sure.

  • I drive to Pittston tonight for a meeting of the three new committees we've just appointed for Maine Veterans for Peace. I will co-chair the Outreach/Membership committee along with Dan Ellis. Our first task is to divide the work between the three committees and then move it along from there.

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