Progressive Calendar 11.06.08
From: David Shove (
Date: Thu, 6 Nov 2008 15:47:05 -0800 (PST)
             P R O G R E S S I V E   C A L E N D A R   11.06.08

1. Health/Marty    11.06 7pm Mankato MN
2. Sustain/film    11.06 7pm

3. Ffunch          11.07 11:30am
4. MidEast/NAfrica 11.07 11:30am
5. Palestine vigil 11.07 4:15pm
6. Afghan bash     11.07 6pm
7. Alt/violence    11.07 6pm

8. David AG Fischer - Where's the fire in the belly?

--------1 of 8--------

From: David Strand <lavgrn [at]>
Subject: Health/Marty 11.06 7pm Mankato MN

You Are Invited to a Public Meeting and Open Discussion with State Senator
John Marty on the Minnesota Health Plan

Health care reform that will truly cover everyone
Health care reform that will truly be comprehensive
Health care reform that we can truly afford

Thursday, November 6, 7 - 9 p.m.
St. John's Episcopal Church, 302 Warren St., Mankato
(Park behind the church, on the street, or at Summit Center - corner of
Warren and 5th streets)

Agenda: Overview of the MN Health Plan proposal - Selection from
documentary "Sick Around the World" - Questions, answers, discussion with
Senator Marty and James Letts, M.D.

Co-Sponsors: Minnesota Universal Health Care Coalition; Physicians for a
National Health Program - MN; League of Women Voters, Mankato Area; St.
John's Episcopal Church; VINE - Faith in Action/Summit Center; SMILES
Center for Independent Living (Co-sponsors support sharing of information
and open discussion of options for health care reform)

For additional information, contact Glen Peterson at 507-389-5184,
507-625-8939, or glen.peterson [at]

--------2 of 8--------

From: Curt McNamara <mcnam025 [at]>
Subject: Sustain/film 11.06 7pm

Celebrate Sustainability Film Series
Doors 6:30 p.m., Film 7 p.m. Free!
MCAD College Center
Minneapolis College of Art and Design
2501 Stevens Ave. S.

Please join us for the following screening about key sustainability issues
affecting our world. Discussion with practicing eco-designers after the

Thurs. Nov. 6th, 7 p.m.
>From the award winning series on PBS:
Design E2: Deeper Shades of Green.
See how designers are rising to the challenge and opportunities of

--------3 of 8--------

From: David Shove <shove001 [at]>
Subject: Ffunch 11.07 11:30am

First Friday Lunch (FFUNCH) for Greens/progressives.

Informal political talk and hanging out.

Day By Day Cafe 477 W 7th Av St Paul.
Meet in the private room (holds 12+).

Day By Day has soups, salads, sandwiches, and dangerous apple pie; is
close to downtown St Paul & on major bus lines

--------4 of 8--------

From: Charles Underwood <charleyunderwood [at]>
Subject: MidEast/NAfrica 11.07 11:30am

Friday, 11/7, 11:30 am to 12:30 pm, Hamline poli sci prof Binnur
Ozkecedi-Tanner speaks on "Multiculturalism and Ethic Politics in the
Middle East and North Africa," Giddens Learning Center, room, 1S, 1537
Hewitt Ave, St Paul.

--------5 of 8--------

From: Charles Underwood <charleyunderwood [at]>
Subject: Palestine vigil 11.07 4:15pm

Friday, 11/7, 4:15 to 5:30 pm, vigil to end US military/political support
of the Israeli occupation of Palestine, corner Summit and Snelling, St

--------6 of 8--------

From: Charles Underwood <charleyunderwood [at]>
Subject: Afghan bash 11.07 6pm

Friday, 11/7, 6 to 11 pm, Partnership for the Education of Children in
Afghanistan sponsors fundraiser "Extra'vaghanistan" with Afghan dinner,
10-year-old Sarosha, the Ethnic Dance Theater, and recently returned
Santwana Dasgupta, $35, Garden Room, City Hall, 8080 Mitchell Rd, Eden
Prairie.  info [at]

--------7 of 8--------

From: Charles Underwood <charleyunderwood [at]>
Subject: Alt/violence 11.07 6pm

11/7 (6 pm) to 11/9 (5 pm), basic level Alternatives to Violence Workshop,
Hennepin County Men's Workhouse, 1145 Shenandoah Lane, Plymouth.
avperika [at] or

--------8 of 8-------

Where's The Fire in the Belly?
by David A.G. Fischer
November 5th, 2008
Dissident Voice

The Real News executive editor and host Paul Jay moderated a productive
and informative dialog between Ralph Nader, Tom Morris, and Bill Fletcher
on election night. While millions of young activists around the nation
cast their ballots for Obama's convincing rhetoric of change, these four
men analyzed the socio-political climate and what a potential Obama
victory will bring.

For those readers who admire the relentless tenacity and dedication of
Ralph Nader at the grassroots level, you will likely be in approval of
what he discusses in this forum, as his words are the focus of this

After campaigning with people on local issues in all 50 states, he admits
to having never seen such high degrees of "resignation, and apathy, and
powerlessness" across the nation. In defense of his observation, nearly a
decade of neo-fascist rule will manifest those results.

He goes on to contrast his campaign with that of Obama as not having any
hoopla, hope or rhetoric; Ralph continues to campaign on the real issues
affecting the people in spite of overwhelming odds - he is a champion
despite Obama's victory.

Along the same line and with applause, his lack of hoopla and rhetoric is
still so out-of-sync with the media cartel's disinformation campaign that
he was once again ignored by the mainstream. What we have here is a man
who refuses to sell out and complacently surrender to the status quo, he
is a man based on strong principle who perceives reality for what it is -
a sham directed by the controlling institutions of power, of which Obama
is just another cog in their finely-tuned machine.

But what do we really know about Mr. Barack Obama? Here we have a
candidate who received hundreds of millions in campaign donations by
corporate America and Wall Street. Nader sensibly asks something I've
pointed out many times, "Why are the corporations investing in Obama?" By
looking at his voting record it is obvious who he supports with
approbation for illegal surveillance, a permanent presence in Iraq with a
potential spread to neighboring countries, offshore drilling which he used
to be against, an economic bailout lacking oversight and transparency, and
so forth. Where is this great change that he has been spewing forth to the
public for the past twenty months? It is likely just more of what the
public wants to hear, but it's apparent by voter turnout that they fail to
feel the hot air blowing by them.

Part of the problem with Obama, as Nader points out, is that while Obama
is pulled to the right by the corporate establishment, there are no
demands being put on him by organized groups such as labor and unions to
pull him the other direction and thus "make him better".

While these aspects are certainly important to consider, Nader goes on
further to expose who Obama is and who he really represents by reminding
us that, "Corporate dominance is so bad that the first black Presidential
candidate ignored the poor [during his campaign] . . . 100 million
people". We heard him mention the dwindling middle-class on many
occasions, but the poor were undoubtedly left in the margins, too large a
demographic to ignore. Some people say, hope, or believe that the new
President Elect will live up to his rhetoric once he takes office and move
us in a positive direction as a nation.

That though, is like wishing on a shooting star, as Nader confirms, "If
you don't pay attention while you're a candidate, the chances of suddenly
becoming a populist are very, very slim". While Nader is a man of action
and experience, not just words, who consistently includes the poor
constituents in his focus, he has seen too many candidates not pay
attention and subsequently create the same results - a completely
marginalized demographic that continues to expand in response.

Statesmen like Ron Paul, and even more so Ralph Nader, are quite cognizant
of what it means to not adhere to the systematic rules of play. By now,
they are also savvy to the repercussions of their dissidence. So long as
the corporations are pulling the political strings by lining the
candidates' pockets with green, the duopolistic Republicats will continue
to be the corporate choice, as has been demonstrated for decades. As such,
there really is no public choice.

Nader supports this idea by asking, "What is left for the American people
to decide - under more restrictive circumstances year after year?" It's an
appropriate question to ask, and something not coming from Obama or
McCain, as they already know the answer and aren't being purchased to
assist the nation in facing questions as such. Rhetoric and hoopla are
what these two servants are paid to maintain.

Just the same, he goes on to answer this succinctly by stating, "Nothing,
because there is no powerful organization that turns the most powerful
branch of government around - The Congress. Congress is the most
susceptible to change". Are we being stymied with such a response? This
isn't something that Obama or McCain have pointed out in their campaigns,
which is exactly why we can entrust it to be accurate. Ralph identifies
precisely that the legislative branch of government has been napping and
taking vacations instead of checking and balancing the authority of the
executive branch. The record shows that Congress has responded to 9/11 in
more of a neurotic delirium than the populace majority; giving away our
rights on a silver platter to the worst president in that nations' history
and directing US toward fascism.

There is now a lot of ground to be made up, and it won't happen unless the
people make it up themselves. As is customary, no free handouts this time
around. Real change that failed to be identified by either corporate
candidate in this election will have to be demanded by the people. With
the election in the rear view mirror, Nader is now concentrating his
energy on helping to do just that. is a website (not yet up and running as of this writing)
promoted by Nader and his affiliates which is to provide "technical and
organizational assistance for organizing Congress action groups". He
admits that they can't do it alone, that people will need to organize and
dedicate their time in order to build a real momentum. He isn't talking
about something only relatively strong like the Obama phenomena or
millions of young participants in an unprecedented election. He is talking
about activism on local levels, which is much different than spontaneous
participation on a national level.

Nader goes on to list ten major overdue changes needed in this country:

1. a living wage
2. full medicare
3. a crackdown on corporate crime
4. public funding and collections
5. getting out of the war
6. demilitarizing foreign policy
7. redirection of corporate subsidies and a bloated military budget
8. public works
9. job creation
10. changing the global trade agreement monstrosity that subordinates
labor, consumer and environmental standards

If it looks and sounds like a Nader, it must be Nader. These are some of
the real issues facing citizens today, and none of which were being
genuinely addressed by the corporate representatives who were propped up
for us again in this election. Anyone who is not a member of the elite is
prone to be attracted to Nader's proposals for change, likely affected by
one or more of these issues. All the more reason to work together and
collaborate as the Sage suggests, and now there will be a medium which
facilitates the ease of this orchestration.

The forum proceeds and all three guests present questions and responses
that are imperative at this juncture. While their focus lies on the power
of locally organized groups, which is the only way to build a movement and
turn things around in order to favor the people, Nader stipulates that the
one thing missing homogeneously throughout the populace is "a fire in the
belly". He accurately notes the passion of people like Rosa Parks and her
lead in the Montgomery bus boycotts, whose inner desire was so strong for
change that she acted - strategically. This is the kind of attitude that
he claims must be aroused throughout the populace if we are to see a real
movement take place.

This review will be concluded with one of the most paramount statements of
the forum. As Nader accurately describes, "This is a civil liberties issue
. . . it is an important civil liberties battle to break open these two
exclusive, reactionary, dominating, marginalizing two parties. They're
snuffing out dissent. They're snuffing out the competition which in the
19th century brought us the Liberty Anti-Slavery Party, the Women Suffrage
Party . . ". As history illustrates, civil liberties have only been
inherited by the action of the people, never were they generously granted
by the government.

The civil liberties that the nation has had stolen from it during the Bush
Regime, are the same liberties that will need to be taken back once again,
by the people, and for the people. The only way to overcome the present
powers of control is to ignite that fire in the belly, and organize
locally. The power still rests in the hands of the people, at least for
the time being.

David A.G. Fischer is a high school English teacher who lives in Colombia.
He is also a lifetime student who contributes socially as a free-lance
writer. Read other articles by David.

This article was posted on Wednesday, November 5th, 2008 at 1:31pm and is
filed under "Third" Party, Activism, Democracy, Democrats, Elections,
Right Wing Jerks.


   - David Shove             shove001 [at]
   rhymes with clove         Progressive Calendar
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