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We Just Graduated!

Politics operates at such different levels -- simultaneously.
It's truly amazing it works at all.

Here we are, less than a week after the Presidential Election, and everything is rosy in America. The Dow is up, Halliburton stock is up, and the President has a mandate. What could be better? NOT!

We are 55 Million citizens - voters - together with 100+ Million more who did not vote - effectively shut out of the national dialogue. The "winners" have declared a mandate and "damn the torpedos." You say you want a voice? Forget it. The electorate has spoken. Your time to speak is over. You don't like it? Then "off with your head". The image is engraven on the American consciousness since Nicholas Berg.

What are we to do? some ask. The fact is, we're already doing it! Our organizational and training efforts leading up to the 2004 Election were not for naught. The election effort helped us to hone our skills, to give us perspective, on what worked, what could have been done better, what never to try again. We now all have a collective understanding of the process and have begun to internalize the organizational requirements of the effort for "next time." Next time, many of us realize, is now.

Groups from around the country are coming together to discuss what has been learned and what we need to do moving forward. At the least, we can work in our neighborhoods and workplaces -- discussing the future; we have begun, now in day 3, the process of initiating dialogue with those whom we did not agree with, those who did not express their opinions and thoughts earlier, those who remained undecided until the bitter end then voted for a second Bush term. We need to understand them, their needs, their aspirations, their fears, their goals and aspirations, and provide them hope, solutions and empowerment. These are the people who will be most affected by the next four years. These are the people we need to make sure are represented in the mainstream and grassroots dialogue in the months and years to come; these are the people we need to bring together; these are the people we need to win. 70% of the citizens of America did NOT vote for this second term presidency. If we, as a party, as individuals, or as grassroots affinity groupings, can open ourselves to LISTENING to those we engage, and promoting our progressive values within the context of our listener's own worlds, lives and realities, we can begin to take the necessary first steps to winning with significantly wider margins than we have seen in the past few elections.

The good thing is that we know how to do this. We have learned what it takes to organize at the local, state and national levels. Some of us understand how to work as grassroots volunteers. Others how to work as party representatives. Those who started with Dean are not as green as in the Summer of 2003.

On November 2, 2004, we graduated.

- RALPH MILLER

Posted by Jessica Falker on November 5, 2004 at 06:38 PM | Permalink | Comments (12) | TrackBack

DemocracyFest '05

Please post here with idears/comments for DemocracyFest '05.

Posted by Jessica Falker on November 5, 2004 at 09:18 AM | Permalink | Comments (7)

Past Gains and Future Triumphs

Thank you for all the hardwork you put into this election season. It's been a long, hard journey; but there have been many gains along the way. We now have new progressives in office and grassroot organizations and progressive networks that never before existed. We have made wonderful, life-long friends that help us feel connected instead of isolated during all this madness.

With all of these gains, we can affect change if we continue to push for the ideals we believe in. There are many ways in which we can do this. One thing about progressives, they are never short of ideas!

Now more than ever I believe in working locally to protect our liberties. Thomm Hartman's book, We The People, provides guidance to protect your community from the misgivings of the Patriot Act. By this weekend, I add something to this blog to provide assistance on how to protect your community from the Patriot Act.

If we each act locally on such an issue, we will win the minds of those that are apathetic or ignorant about what the administration is doing to our civil liberties. Those neoconservatives won't stand a chance in 2008.

Charlene

Posted by Jessica Falker on November 4, 2004 at 11:02 AM | Permalink | Comments (1)