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

With a new administration in Washington it will be a challenge to get the 'liberals' to hold Biden-Harris to the few 'progressive promises' they made during their campaign. Biden is bringing back many of Bush & Obama's neo-cons to head his foreign policy. I'll be on this case without hesitation.

Thursday, August 07, 2008

THE SIGNS ARE EVERYWHERE

* Ron Suskind's new book, The Way of the World, is causing quite a stir and resulting in the impeachment word being used more frequently on network TV these days. His book shares more inside scoop on Bush-Cheney lies and deception in order to drag us into war.

* Mary Beth is getting rave reviews for her speech in New York city the other night. It's been posted on quite a few websites around the globe. Last night she spoke in Great Neck, NY and tonight she goes to Staten Island for a talk.

* The Army's recruiting scandal is heating up as young high school kids who decide they don't want to join the military are being threatened by desperate recruiters. This has been going on for years but recent public revelations are giving the recruiting machine a well-deserved black eye. There have even been instances where recruiters have locked kids in hotel rooms refusing to let them out unless they agree to join. That is kidnapping but somehow the military is not punished.

* Thanks to the Internet and Comedy Central shows like John Stewart's Daily Show and The Colbert Report the public is developing a sound bullshit meter to help us separate wheat from chaff. It never fails to astound me how, in spite of endless right-wing talk radio and corporate dominated news reporting on the primary network TV stations, folks are still able to figure out that we are being taken for a long bad ride. The people ain't stupid.

* The photo above comes from a little shoe shop in a Portland, Maine mini-mall where we last sat in the office of Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME) calling on her to vote against any more funding for the Iraq occupation. Twice we ended up sitting all-night long. Collins is running for reelection and didn't want the bad publicity from having us arrested. This small shoe shop keeper, just across the way, asked us for one of our signs to put in his store while we were there. Imagine the surprise of Collins staffers when they left their office and saw that sign.......

* Just to be fair and bi-partisan, Rep. Tom Allen (D-ME) who is running against Susan Collins for her Senate seat, is happy these days after the Maine Supreme Court ruled that Independent candidate Herb Hoffman can't be on the November ballot. Hoffman's lawyers are now taking the case to the U.S. Supreme Court saying that, "The Maine Law Court has construed and applied Maine law in a manner that not only tramples upon the federal constitutional rights of Mr. Hoffman, but also on the rights of the thousands of Maine voters who validly signed his petitions, and the rights of other members of the electorate who seek to engage in political expression or association through the nomination of non-party candidates to federal or state office."

I am one of those who have had their vote taken from them and will keep you posted on this important story about the loss of democracy in Maine. The Maine Supreme Court basically threw out Hoffman's signatures because they said he had to witness each and every one of them for them to be legal.

Hoffman's response is as follows: "But I guess it was OK for Democrat Tom Allen to do it back in February. We've examined the petitions Rep. Allen filed this year. More than 97 % of them were collected on caucus day. The confusion - and in some cases pure bedlam - that prevailed at the Democratic caucuses this year [because of the huge turnout due to the Obama phenomenon] has been widely documented. Just a cursory examination of the Allen petitions shows numerous instances indicating many of the signatures may not have been properly witnessed under this new standard.

"Had the Law Court subjected the Allen petitions to the same standard as were ours," Hoffman said, "there is a very good possibility that Rep. Allen would have been denied ballot access as well."

* Yes the signs of rebellion are everywhere. Just don't let it get hijacked by the politicians - of any party.

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