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: Brunswick, Maine, United States

I'll be taking an 'unpaid leave of absence' from my job at the Global Network from December 15-March 15, 2020 in order to help my friend Lisa Savage on her campaign for the US Senate in Maine. She's running as a Maine Green Independent Party member and needs to gather 2,000 petition signatures of registered Greens during that period. I'll be back to GN after March 15.

Friday, February 17, 2012

PARKED IN NEUTRAL


  • I am in the Los Angeles airport with a five-hour wait for my plane to Honolulu. It's been a long day already and still a long way to go. Just sitting at an airport eatery and talked to two young black women that were interested in where I was going. Told them about Jeju Island and handed them each a village brochure. Fortunately I got a stack of them in the mail on Thursday so the timing was good to bring them along on the trip. Looks like I will arrive in Hawaii around midnight which will be equal to about 5:00 am back in Maine. I was able to get some cat naps on the plane which is unusual for me. My overhead cargo compartment on the plane to L.A. got stuck so I was the last person to get off the plane as they had to bring a guy from maintenance to pry it open so I would get my back pack and coat. Won't need the coat in Hawaii but had better hold onto it for Jeju Island.
  • While in Hawaii I will be talking alot about the Navy's huge Pacific Missile Range Facility based on the island of Kauai. Their website brags that "PMRF is the world's largest instrumented multi-environmental range capable of supported surface, sub-surface, air, and space operations simultaneously. There are over 1,100 square miles of instrumented underwater range and over 42,000 square miles of controlled airspace." It is here that they test the "missile defense" systems on-board the Navy Aegis destroyers that are made in Bath, Maine and will be ported on Jeju Island. So this trip is truly about connecting the dots. (The Pentagon is porting these ships in many other places as well including Japan, Australia, the Middle East, the Black Sea, and the Mediterranean.) The Navy now has a big public relations campaign on national TV where they call themselves "A global force for good." They are using our tax dollars to brainwash the public into supporting their aggressive "full spectrum dominance" program that only benefits corporate globalization.
  • Just got an email from fellow Maine activist Ed Friedman who is one of the leaders of the anti-SMART meter campaign in our state. He shares a New York Times article called Congress to Sell Public Airwaves to Pay Benefits. Ed quotes the article and comments:

    "The measure would be a rare instance of the government compensating private companies with the proceeds from an auction of public property". Say that phrase to yourself three times. The "tell" about this measure was the coordinated decision to sell it to the compliant mainstream media as a long-neglected, post 9-11 public safety measure and a means to pay for the payroll tax and unemployment benefit extensions. They couldn't sell it on its own. If you want to give a windfall to already enormously profitable companies, you better tell people it's necessary to keep us all safe, help poor people and be fiscally responsible at the same time. Keep those media conglomerate and telecommunications company campaign dollars rolling in. Make no mistake. That's what this is about. We deserve better from Washington and from the coverage of political machinations.
  • This sell off of the public airwaves is coming under the Obama administration. The magician continues to pull rabbits out of the hat on behalf of the corporate oligarchy. I must again remind folks that if Bush did half the things that Obama does the grassroots Democrats would be howling. But Obama keeps them parked in neutral and all you hear from them is "Well, we have to vote for Obama. You don't want the Republicans to get into power do you? They would start more wars and privatize what public services we have left." Does anyone remember Tony Blair? Hello, is anyone home??!!!!!

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