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

I grew up in a military family and joined the Air Force in 1971 during the Vietnam War. It was there that I became a peace activist.

Wednesday, March 01, 2017

Who Will Lead the Growing Anti-Trump Movement?


  • Thirteen of us from across Maine gathered today to commemorate Ash Wednesday at Bath Iron Works (BIW) during the lunch hour.  There were many workers walking and driving by including many sailors who will be on-board the newly built destroyers made at the shipyard.  I took great pleasure in them seeing us knowing that soon enough they will be making their way to the new Navy base on Jeju Island where they will also be met by protests.  We are getting them prepared.

  • Today began the annual Lenten vigils at BIW that will be held each Saturday in March and the first three Saturdays in April.  We'll gather from 11:30 am for an hour each time.

  • I was supposed to go to the County District Court at 1:00 pm today for my sentencing as a result of being found guilty during our recent Zumwalt 12 trial.  (I had been given permission by the judge during the trial to leave the day before the trial ended in order to do a long ago scheduled speaking tour in Sweden, Finland and Denmark.)  But the court called me this morning around 11:00 am and told me that the sentencing had to be cancelled because the judge was not available. It has been rescheduled for March 8 at 1:00 pm.

  • I watched the Trump speech before Congress last night and the bottom line for me was his call for $54 billion more in Pentagon spending.  This money will first have to be taken from the hides of people in need and environmental programs before it can be handed over to the endless war machine.

  • Across our state people are forming new local groups and coalitions to 'fight the Trump agenda'.  But sadly many of these groups are being directed by Democratic Party operatives who are leading the angry public into electoral efforts to put the corporate dominated Dems back into power in future elections.  Most of these groups will refuse to take on the military spending issue, and our endless wars, largely because they receive their direction (and often funding) from the Democrats.

  • The Democrats are afraid to upset the military industrial complex.  Here in Maine the elected Democrats work hand-in-hand with the Republicans to keep the military production lines humming across our state and I know it is the same all across America.  It has been determined that the US role under corporate globalization will be 'security export' so the Democrats are quite happy to help maintain the status quo.  Democrats get handed the hot campaign cash from the weapons industry just like the Republicans and they will make sure that the 'progressive groups' now being mobilized in Maine and beyond steer clear of such radical ideas as cutting the Pentagon's bloated budget and stopping these god awful wars!

  • All of those who are working to make progressive change across the land (such as dealing with climate change, cleaning up oil spills, funding public education, providing welfare and health care for the poor, etc.) will soon enough find out that there will be NO $$$$$ available largely because Congress and Trump will be doing two basic things in the years ahead.  First they want to give even more tax cuts to the rich and secondly they intend to raise military spending by another 10%.

  • I've been working on these issues full time since 1980 and can testify that I've seen progressives turn their backs and walk away time and time again in order to avoid taking on the military industrial complex.  It's an unpopular issue but it's getting much harder these days to deny reality. Sadly as long as the Democrats push themselves to the front of this growing anti-Trump movement it is unlikely that things will really change.  Local people who really want change in America must take back control of this much needed new movement and demand that the military war machine has to be on the agenda!
Bruce

3 Comments:

Anonymous Brother Jonah said...

They're gonna milk that cash-cow til it falls down and dies. In the tour of Carlsbad Cabins there's a trickle, according to the park rangers it's been doing it for a few million years. But it's burrowed its way down from the surface, just a few gallons at a time. By the way this was in 1974. The open-tour part of going in (there's about 10 times as much unavailable to the public) so it was plenty deep.
There's a light shining up the shaft. It started as a small crack.
you can see the erosion pattern, dissolving one layer of outer limestone molecules a year. And of course the whole cavern was hollowed out that way. One --- small--- steady--- drip---per hour or so. I could go on for hours extolling the power of tiny. But I'd probably fall asleep from the lack of aggravation. There will be a few really bad disasters which will also derail the plans of both heads of the beast. Momma Earth is going to slap us down for being so destructive. And arrogant. The ones who describe themselves as Alphas will take the biggest hit, just because they were a) right in the mix, pulling on all that they should be pushing and vice versa. and b) they think they're invincible.

3/1/17, 9:11 PM  
Blogger Gareth said...

I once told kids in school who were feeling powerless that I had overheard raindrops talking. One said to the other, I heard a rumour that we are somehow connected to the ocean do you think that's possible? That's ridiculous said the other, how could something as tiny as ourselves have any relation to the vast oceans of this planet?

3/2/17, 8:15 AM  
Blogger Lisa Savage said...

Clarity as usual from you, Bruce. People get angry with me when I point out the Democratic Party hand in the current "resistance" movements. It's easy to detect the Dems even when they operate from behind the scenes. The litmus test is, are they including wars and militarism on the laundry list of all they oppose?

3/3/17, 5:20 AM  

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