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'm back to work for the Global Network. Will continue to help Lisa Savage for US Senate campaign on my free time. Trying to self-isolate as much as possible. Best wishes and good luck to you all.

Saturday, January 11, 2020

Lisa on popular comedian's show



Progressive comedian Graham Elwood talks with Lisa Savage, a Green Independent running for US Senate in Maine. Graham is based in Los Angeles.

There were lots of great comments after the video.  Here are a few of them:

  • That analogy about spending 70% of your money on security is brilliant!

  • Green jobs "for our climate, our economy and for our souls" Tell it Lisa!

  • I didn't think I'd see a Green in the Senate in my lifetime.. I'm 62, it's looking like I might.

  • Hopefully everyone watching this would give Lisa their #1 vote and the corporate Dem their #2 vote. The beautiful thing about RCV, is that it eliminates the "Voting for the Lesser Evil" strategy. I'm voting Lisa #1, without a doubt! 

  • I like the picture. She looks steady and honest. I feel weird when politicians color their gray hair. Gray hair is like a quickie Mart sign for wisdom. Her cut is no nonsense, easily maintenance. Definitely feminine without frills. She looks like someone I'd want to hire. In interview she's well identified problems and priorities. Would like to hear more about bills she want to introduce and how she'll carry out the job responsibility but I like her. Makes me more certain I don't do yang because I've researched him for hours with less information. Wish I had more money to contribute.

  • Thanks Graham for introducing Lisa to your audience. She has the 'vibe' of Dr Jill Stein - intelligent, easy to understand and all for the people. Those living in Maine and supporting Bernie - vote for Lisa. Bernie will need people like her in the congress. If you are not from Maine then think about election with more choices for candidates. That would be a truly democratic election system. Bernie will bring it in. Go Bernie!

  • I love it. This is exciting. I was likely going with Betsy Sweet but I didn't know about Lisa; and she covers real issues with real solutions. I will check out her website now. Thank you Graham for giving us all the important interviews and reporting on what matters. You make a good difference.  -A Mainer

  • You can donate at LisaforMaine.org - I wonder who is the better option, Betsy Sweet or Lisa? I've donated to Betsy but that was before I knew a green was running. Id be happy with either based on a quick skim of her site

Friday, January 10, 2020

Not just cheap talk but the real deal for once


Dear Bruce,
I’m Lisa Savage, and I’m running for the US Senate seat currently held by Susan Collins. I’m a teacher, an organizer, and a grandmother, and I want to give Mainers a Senator who works for the people, not the powerful.
I teach in a low-income area, and I've been concerned for years about the well-being of the families in my area. They’re really struggling to survive. They don’t have adequate health care or jobs. Washington DC is failing them. They need real change.

As your voice in the Senate, I’ll do what it takes to protect our children’s future and create a better world for all of us.
But first we need to get on the ballot, meaning we need to collect at least 2,000 signatures from registered voters in the Maine Green Independent Party between January 1st and March 15th. 
Will you help by pledging your signature for our ballot petition - and pitching in to our ballot fund?

We deserve a government that works for us, not the big banks, weapons manufacturers, fossil fuel giants and corporate lobbyists who are calling the shots in Congress. That’s why my campaign won’t take money or support from corporate lobbyists, CEOs, or super PACs.

I believe, as residents of the richest country in the world, we all deserve the fundamentals of a secure life: good union jobs through a Green New Deal that will put millions to work tackling the climate crisis; a Medicare for All healthcare system that will work for everyone - unlike today’s broken system that drives sick people into bankruptcy; and quality education for all, including debt-free public higher education.
We’re facing a climate crisis that’s already harming our farms, fisheries, and coast. Our children are asking if they’ll have a planet they can live on.

Yet with all the urgent needs we face, Congress is making things worse by giving almost 60% of our federal discretionary budget to the Pentagon for endless, unwinnable wars that are making the world less safe.
It’s time to say no to politics as usual, and join together to work for a new system that puts people, planet and peace over profit. 
We have a historic opportunity in this race now that Maine has adopted Ranked Choice Voting. Our new and improved voting system gives everyone the freedom to vote their values, not their fears. 
A recent national poll found a staggering 70% of Americans are fed up with our political system that only works for insiders with money and power. Together we can seize this moment to build a people-powered campaign that will make history. All we have to do is let our neighbors know that they have a real choice.
We’ve never had a better opportunity - or a more urgent need - to come together for the greater good. I hope you’ll consider supporting my campaign to give Mainers a Senator for the people. 
Please help our grassroots campaign get on the ballot by pledging to sign our ballot petition and donating to our ballot fund!

We’re running a people-powered campaign without corporate money, which means we rely on support from real people like you and me.
We also have many ways to volunteer, depending on where you live and the time, talents and energy you have to offer. We need your help to build a grassroots movement that can make history.
Together, we can create a Maine and a nation that works for all of us!
Warmly,
Lisa Savage
Solon, Maine
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Thursday, January 09, 2020

Reviewing the story of U.S. dominance & imperialism



Dictator Donald Trump’s spurious, hate-filled rhetoric against the Islamic Republic is absolutely unacceptable. He – as Presidents before him – has been spitting lie after lie, deceiving the public and stirring up unnecessary xenophobia and discord.

This is quite a historically correct, educational and entertaining video.  A must watch.

#DonaldTrump #Response

Wednesday, January 08, 2020

Reaction: Trump's speech today


By Kevin Zeese
Popular Resistance

Trump's speech was filled with lies that Republicans, Democrats and the corporate media will pretend were true and will confuse the people of the United States with hatred for Iran and Soleimani based on falsehoods.

But, the only immediate threat made was more economic sanctions, which are devastating and should be considered an act of war, but he did not announce any other retaliation.  He also began saying Iran will never have nuclear weapons, but Iran has always said it never wanted nuclear weapons.

He is playing primarily to a domestic audience which has been lied to about Iran by all presidents since 1979. He needs that audience to see this conflict as a US victory, and the assassination as justified. The media is pushing people all to say Soleimani was a terrorist, when in fact he was a hero who defeated US imperialism against Iran and other nations, as well as defeating ISIS and other extremists that threatened many nations.  This is why he had the largest funeral in the history of the world involving tens of millions mourning him in Iran and across the region.

The relationship between the US and Iran is still a tinderbox. And, members of the Axis of Resistance that Soleimani created across the Middle East may act on their on to avenge the murder of Soleimani. The world is still at risk for a major war, but as of today, one has been averted.

The push to get the US out of the Middle East is urgent. Trump bragging about the US being the number one oil and gas producer, taking credit for a climate crime committed by Obama, could be an opening to push him to leave -- the US no longer needs to be spending hundreds of millions a year to have troops in the Middle East. It is in US interests to leave the area since we no longer need their oil.

There was also a tiny opening for diplomacy with Iran. How there is a breakthrough is hard to see. It may take Russia or China to play a mediator role. If the Democrats and Republicans had not so undermined the ability of Trump to talk to Putin and Xi about positive steps, it would be much easier. The key for Iran is relief of sanctions. They will not come to the table without some action by the US. Sadly, I do not see that happening until after the 2020 election. So, this year we need to avert war and lay the groundwork for peace. 

The real mission of Gen. Soleimani disclosed



The Americans lie over and over again.

The British media (see this video) is not interested in discussing American lies.  Largely because the British media is complicit in these very same lies. 

Take George W. Bush's 'shock and awe' attack on Iraq in 2003 because of 'weapons of mass destruction' that were not actually there.  The British media gave Tony Blair uncritical access to spread his lies which helped Bush to internationally justify the war.

The Iranian professor (Mohammad Marandi, University of Tehran) in this video is telling the truth.  But the west is not willing to hear it. Notice how the TV host interrupts his guest and shuts him down at the end of the interview.  That is no way to treat a guest on your show.

The American people have been fed these lies for so many years. Even people on the left (who fancy themselves as being critical thinkers) have swallowed much of the mainstream media's constant lies.  MSNBC's Rachel Maddow being just one such example of a perceived 'progressive' journalist that spreads demonization and lies.

Now these many years of lies are coming back to haunt America.  Suddenly the American people appear to be confused as they say they don't know who to believe anymore.

That should be no surprise.

Bruce

Tuesday, January 07, 2020

Is it time to wake up & mobilize for peace yet folks?


The U.S. usually likes to attack countries that can't fight back very effectively. Picking on Iran was not such a good idea - they can and will fight back.

If the Pentagon can't handle Afghanistan how do they think they can take on Iran?

Kiss another couple trillion $$$ bye-bye America! You think our roads, bridges, sewer & water systems are bad now, just wait a few more years......

The Pentagon has sent six B-52 bombers to their base on the island of Diego Garcia in the Indian Ocean to engage in military operations against Iran.

The United States has many military bases surrounding Iran, but this time they have chosen Diego Garcia because the distance exceeds the maximum range that Iranian missiles can cover.

The American military base has existed in Diego Garcia for about 50 years and there are currently between 3,000 and 5,000 US troops on the island.

Is it time to wake up and mobilize for peace yet folks?

Bruce


Pentagon insider Wilkerson on Iran



Pushback with Aaron Maté

As millions of Iranians mourn the US murder of Qassem Soleimani, ex-Bush administration official Col. Lawrence Wilkerson discuses the parallels between Bush's war on Iraq and Trump's campaign against Iran; the history of US shunning diplomacy with Tehran; and how an addiction to war drives US foreign policy.

 Guest: Col. Lawrence Wilkerson, former chief of staff to Colin Powell. Currently a distinguished professor at the College of William and Mary.

Next Sunday in Brunswick


Monday, January 06, 2020

Who should we believe?



Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said yesterday, after the Iraqi government had asked the US to leave their country, pack up and close the US bases, “the United States is prepared to help the Iraqi people get what they deserve and continue our mission.” He went on to say that the Iraqi people want the US to keep their bases in Iraq.

This is of course nonsense.  The US uses the bases in Iraq to steal Iraqi oil just as it is doing in northern Syria with it troops guarding and stealing Syrian oil. America has become a pirate, a bandit and a terrorist.

“Iran must respect the sovereignty of its neighbors and immediately cease its provision of lethal aid and support to third parties in Iraq and throughout the region,” Pompeo said.

The entire US Middle East policy is now crashing and burning.  Washington has ignited a fuse that it will not be able to extinguish any time soon.  No one trusts Washington anymore to seriously negotiate anything.

US arrogance has finally reached the point where no one can hide the truth anymore.  The US is playing an evil game.  It's lost all moral and legal authority.  The only thing Washington can do is threaten, bludgeon and kill those who get in the way.

The empire is finished.  It's just a matter of time.  If the 'allies' were smart they would jump ship now while they still can.  This American 'ship of state' is sinking fast.  Those hanging onto to America will drown as well.

If smart, the American people will demand that the corporate oligarchies that run the government be over turned immediately.  We need non-violent revolution in this country.  Neither of the two corporate owned political parties can get us out of this mess.  They are far too deeply embedded and implicated in America's crimes against humanity.

Bruce 

Sunday, January 05, 2020

OMG...gotta see the latest from Iraq & Iran


The blowback has begun

By The Saker

First, let’s begin by a quick summary of what has taken place (note: this info is still coming in, so there might be corrections once the official sources make their official statements).

  • Iraqi Prime Minister Adil Abdl Mahdi has now officially revealed that the US had asked him to mediate between the US and Iran and that General Qassem Soleimani to come and talk to him and give him the answer to his mediation efforts.  Thus, Soleimani was on an OFFICIAL DIPLOMATIC MISSION as part of a diplomatic initiative INITIATED BY THE USA.
  • The Iraqi Parliament has now voted on a resolution requiring the government to press Washington and its allies to withdraw their troops from Iraq.
  • Iraq’s caretaker PM Adil Abdul Mahdi said the American side notified the Iraqi military about the planned airstrike minutes before it was carried out. He stressed that his government denied Washington permission to continue with the operation.
  •  The Iraqi Parliament has also demanded that the Iraqi government must “work to end the presence of any foreign troops on Iraqi soil and prohibit them from using its land, airspace or water for any reason“.
  • The Iraqi Foreign Ministry said that Baghdad had turned to the UN Security Council with complaints about US violations of its sovereignty.
  • Iraqi cleric Moqtada al-Sadr said the parliamentary resolution to end foreign troop presence in the country did not go far enough, calling on local and foreign militia groups to unite.  I also have confirmation that the Mehdi Army is being re-mobilized.
  • The Pentagon brass is now laying the responsibility for this monumental disaster on Trump.  The are now slowly waking up to this immense clusterbleep and don’t want to be held responsible for what is coming next.
  • For the first time in the history of Iran, a Red Flag was hoisted over the Holy Dome Of Jamkaran Mosque, Iran.  This indicates that the blood of martyrs has been spilled and that a major battle will now happen.  The text in the flag says “Oh Hussein we ask for your help” (unofficial translation 1) or “Rise up and avenge al-Husayn” (unofficial translation 2)
  • The US has announced the deployment of 3’000 soldiers from the 82nd Airborne to Kuwait.
  • Finally, the Idiot-in-Chief tweeted the following message, probably to try to reassure his freaked out supporters: “The United States just spent Two Trillion Dollars on Military Equipment. We are the biggest and by far the BEST in the World! If Iran attacks an American Base, or any American, we will be sending some of that brand new beautiful equipment their way…and without hesitation!“.  Apparently, he still thinks that criminally overspending for 2nd rate military hardware is going to yield victory…
Read the rest of this article from The Saker here

Saturday protest in Portland, Maine opposing U.S. Iran policy


Sunday song