Friday, July 27, 2012
This town of devout recyclers loves nothing more than to assemble a rag-tag band of adults in order to celebrate Important Liberal Values like “diversity,” “sustainability” and “community.” Yet the Lummi’s cause has found little traction among Bellingham’s proud Co-Op members. Could it be that, by “community,” we often mean “the [white, college-educated] community”? When we say we appreciate “diversity,” do we really mean that we appreciate a diverse array of tapas? In her essay "As Lummi Nation Fights to Save Their Way of Life, Liberal Town Bands Together to Save Old Broken Building," Marie Biondolillo gives a burning assessment of the proudly “progressive” Bellingham, WA, whose many activist residents have neglected to give a shit about the local Lummi tribe’s treaty rights (currently being fought for in Washington, D.C.), despite national coverage of the story.
Monday, July 2, 2012

The Real Reason Conservatives Keep Winning — Progressives won’t win until we get a lot better at building binding communities of trust and shared identity.

abaldwin360:

 In American politics, we see the top-down authoritarian worldview of Conservatives enabling them to fall in line and take marching orders. They form strong loyalty bonds through religious affiliation, old money networks, and various social clubs that give them an immense capacity for social cohesion.

And what about Progressives? We are divided into issue silos, unable to form lasting coalitions that bond us together under the same ideological flag, and easily kept on the defensive through the age-old strategy of Divide and Conquer. We have difficulty trusting each other and our funders are unable or unwilling to invest in talent for talent’s sake — they always need to monitor the outcomes of their giving and almost never fund the operational needs of our advocacy organizations.

This is the real reason why we lose. It isn’t that their ideas are better. The difference is entirely in the execution. They set the agendas and we react to them, plain and simple. So what can we do about this dire situation? Again, the answer is easy to state:

Progressives need to engage in a values-based strategy that builds trust across the issue silos. We need to focus on building communities of shared identity that bind us together.

Building trust across organizations requires a three-pronged approach. First, we have to know our own values so that we can articulated them with authenticity and authority. Secondly, we must make these values explicit and engage in the practice of radical transparency to leave no questions about where we stand and what we care about. And third, we’ve got to seek out those who resonate with these values at the core level of their personal identity. It is upon this foundation that we can engage in the vital work of building trust.

read more

I have often been of the opinion that Romney simply believes that those of us who do not have his financial advantages are not of his species, let alone his class. How else do you explain his inability to connect with anyone at all? How do you explain that he finds 4,300 people losing their jobs to be an amusing anecdote? How about when he tells a crowd, “I’m also unemployed,” ignoring his $250,000 safety net. How about the time he said that all young people need to do is borrow money from their parents? If Mitt Romney becomes president, education will be a luxury affordable by few. He’s against teacher’s unions. He’s for school vouchers. His idea of an affordable school and of a model for education, is actually the third most expensive college in the country. Romney Wants People To Have All The Education They Want – If They Can Afford It (via azspot)
Thursday, June 21, 2012 Monday, June 18, 2012

Save the Troy Library: “Adventures In Reverse Psychology”

The city of Troy, Michigan was facing a budget shortfall, and was considering closing the Troy Public Library for lack of funds. Even though the necessary revenues could be raised through a miniscule tax increase, powerful anti-tax groups in the area were organized against it. A vote was scheduled amongst the city’s residents, to shut the library or accept the tax increase, and Leo Burnett Detroit decided to support the library by creating a reverse psychology campaign. Yard signs began appearing that read: “Vote to Close Troy Library on August 2nd - Book Burning Party on August 5th.” No one wants to be a part of a town that burns books, and the outraged citizens of Troy pushed back against the “idiotic book burners” and ultimately supported the tax increase, thus ensuring the library’s survival.

This is a really great example of not only how difficult it can be to change the conversation in politics, but also how powerful it can be once you succeed in doing so.

Friday, June 15, 2012 Thursday, June 14, 2012
Remind me again about how liberal spending is bankrupting the U.S.?

Remind me again about how liberal spending is bankrupting the U.S.?

Wednesday, June 13, 2012 Tuesday, June 12, 2012
The collapse of American wealth, in one chart

The typical American family saw 39 percent of its wealth evaporate between 2007 and 2010, my colleague Ylan Q. Mui reports today.
The median net worth of families in the United States fell from $126,400 in 2007 to $77,300 in 2010 — which means that the median American family had the same net worth in 2010 that it had way back in 1992. Here’s the chart from the Federal Reserve study.
A great deal of the drop came from the collapse of housing wealth after the bubble burst — median home equity dropped 42 percent between 2007 and 2010. The housing bubble, the Fed says, probably accounts for some odd regional patterns: Income grew in the South and West during the housing bubble and stagnated everywhere else. After the bubble burst, that patterned reversed itself.

Keep voting Republican, friends. They’re such great job creators!

The collapse of American wealth, in one chart

The typical American family saw 39 percent of its wealth evaporate between 2007 and 2010, my colleague Ylan Q. Mui reports today.

The median net worth of families in the United States fell from $126,400 in 2007 to $77,300 in 2010 — which means that the median American family had the same net worth in 2010 that it had way back in 1992. Here’s the chart from the Federal Reserve study.

A great deal of the drop came from the collapse of housing wealth after the bubble burst — median home equity dropped 42 percent between 2007 and 2010. The housing bubble, the Fed says, probably accounts for some odd regional patterns: Income grew in the South and West during the housing bubble and stagnated everywhere else. After the bubble burst, that patterned reversed itself.

Keep voting Republican, friends. They’re such great job creators!

Monday, June 11, 2012
1 President - Barack Obama - has voiced support for a constitutional amendment to overturn Citizens United.
100+ Members of Congress have backed a constitutional amendment.
200+ Local government resolutions that support a constitutional amendment to overturn Citizens United have passed since the January 2010 Supreme Court ruling.
5 State legislatures have backed a constitutional amendment.
21 Additional states have resolutions introduced in their legislatures.
1 million+ Signatures have been collected from people calling for an amendment.

1 President - Barack Obama - has voiced support for a constitutional amendment to overturn Citizens United.

100+ Members of Congress have backed a constitutional amendment.

200+ Local government resolutions that support a constitutional amendment to overturn Citizens United have passed since the January 2010 Supreme Court ruling.

5 State legislatures have backed a constitutional amendment.

21 Additional states have resolutions introduced in their legislatures.

1 million+ Signatures have been collected from people calling for an amendment.

Sunday, June 10, 2012
He wants another stimulus, he wants to hire more government workers. He says we need more fireman, more policeman, more teachers. Did he not get the message of Wisconsin? The American people did. It’s time for us to cut back on government and help the American people.

Romney says we don’t need any more teachers, firemen, or policemen. (via think-progress)

The message of Wisconsin is that an election is super expensive, but the Kochs can afford it.