Progressive Calendar 11.08.12 /3
From: David Shove (shove001umn.edu)
Date: Thu, 8 Nov 2012 13:23:18 -0800 (PST)
 *P R O G R E S S I V E   C A L E N D A R    11.08.12*

1. Post-elec talk/eat  11.08 5:30pm
2. No to drones!        11.08 7pm
3. Midstream reading 11.08 7:30pm

4. Ralph Nader        - On a progressive civic agenda
5. Glenn Greenwald - From liberal victory to disempowerment in six easy
steps
6. John Nichols       - For Obama, a bigger win than for Kennedy, Nixon,
Carter, Bush or Bush
7. ed                      - bumpersticker

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From: Sarah Martin
Post-elec talk/eat  11.08 5:30pm

Post-Election Discussion & Potluck
Thursday, November 8th  5:30 - 7pm
4200 Cedar Avenue, Minneapolis

Recovering from the election? Come together as WAMM members and supporters
to discuss what should be next for the peace movement. What does this
election mean for the peace movement? What do we want to push for with the
next president? This will be an informal discussion. Please bring a dish to
share.
You are also invited to stay afterwards for Brian Terrell, sponsored by the
WAMM Ground All Drones Committee, who will speak on “Punishing Free Speech
and Letting Murder Off the Hook, Justice Denied in Missouri” as he prepares
to serve 6 months in federal prison for his non-violent protest of drone
warfare


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From: WAMM
No to drones! 11.08 7pm

Presentation by Brian Terrell: “No to Drones!”
Thursday, November 8, 7:00 p.m. Cedar Center, 4200 Cedar Avenue South,
Minneapolis.

Brian is a Catholic Worker based in Maloy, Iowa, and co-coordinator of
Voices for Creative Nonviolence. He was convicted in U.S. District Court,
Jefferson City, Missouri, and sentenced to a 6-month prison term on October
11th for trespassing at Whiteman Air Force Base, one of the stateside bases
where Predator drones are remotely operated to fly the skies over
Afghanistan and Pakistan. Brian will begin his sentence on November 30.
Brian will talk about drones, their impact on innocent people, and why he
was willing to risk arrest and imprisonment to protest their use. Sponsored
by: WAMM’s Ground All Drones Committee, and the Twin Cities Peace Campaign
(TCPC). FFI: Call WAMM at 612-827-5364.


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From: ed
Midstream reading 11.08 7:30pm

Midstream Reading Series
When: Thursday November 8, 7:30–8:30pm.
Where: Blue Moon building,  corner of 39th and (3820) East Lake.  Upstairs.
 Entrance just west of the Blue Moon coffee house; up the stairs and to the
left. Not wheel-chair accessible. Plentiful street parking.

  Best to arrive 10-20 minutes early to get coffee and food/dessert from
the Blue Moon, and to be seated by 7:30 so we can begin on time. And, the
venue will easily hold about 30; after that, standing or floor-sitting room
only. The early bird gets the seat.

Original poems and stories read/performed by their creators:
Edward Eubanks
Jean Miriam Larson
Barry Blumenfeld
Trish Stachelski

Edward Eubanks
St. Paul based humor writer who's work stretches from political satire and
commentary to children's books and bawdy limericks.  Wrote for first
on-line humor magazine, Zip Beep, and was a regular fixture on 80's BBS
scene.  Has written 2 unpublished novels, The Eye of God and The Christmas
Song.  Lifelong Democrat with masochistic bent and an uncommon appreciation
of the insanity defense.

Jean Miriam Larson
Jean Miriam Larson’s book of poems and sketches, The Superior Life, is for
lovers of wilderness, especially the Boundary Waters and Lake Superior’s
north shore. Her poems, interviews, and essays have appeared on
W.W.Norton’s PoemsOutloud web journal, in Midway Journal, the journal Rock,
Paper, Scissors, and The Park Bugle as well as in performances with
TalkingImageConnection and Three Dances.  She graduated with an MFA in
writing from Hamline University’s Graduate School of Liberal Studies.
 Jean’s book is available at Micawber’s Book Shop, Drury Lane Books,
Solbakken Resort and Lutsen Resort, or at www.SuperiorLifePoetry.com .

Barry Blumenfeld
Barry Blumenfeld has had poems and stories on web sites such as LIEF and
Exquisite Corpse. His novel "O, Sinners" is available as an e-book for 99
cents at Amazon, Smashwords, and on iTunes. He's seeking a print publisher
for it. Barry is a New York City transplant--the husband of a daughter of
St. Paul.

Trish Stachelski
Trish Stachelski grew up in Milwaukee, Wisconsin and traveled to South
America to fulfill a dream of seeing the Galapagos tortoises. She is a
poet, singer and teacher. Her cd of original songs in English and Spanish
is "Hola, Tortuga."  Her blog is longfellowfarmer.com "Urban Nature Notes."

Before and after: The Blue Moon, downstairs, has coffee, sandwiches,
desserts. Merlin’s Rest, a bar/restaurant 3 blocks west, has a full bar,
good food, a late hours kitchen, some outside seating

For further information: David Shove shove001 [at] umn.edu     651-636-5672


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On a Progressive Civic Agenda
by Ralph Nader
Published on Wednesday, November 7, 2012 by Common Dreams

The “democracy gap” in our politics and elections spells a deep sense of
powerlessness by people who drop out, do not vote, or listlessly vote for
the ‘least worst’ every four years and then wonder why after every cycle
the ‘least worst’ gets worse. People need to be “Expert Voters” and “Expert
Citizens.”

The important work of our democracy does not end on election day, rather it
begins anew once the votes are counted.

A civic agenda that starts to end the corporate domination of our country
should:

    * End ballot access obstructionism
    * Open up the Presidential debates
    * Public financing of campaigns
    * Raise the minimum wage to $10 per hour
    * Adopt single payer national health insurance
    * Launch a nationwide public works and repair program
    * Cut the huge, bloated, wasteful military budget
    * Retire nuclear power, expand Renewable Energy to deal with climate
change
    * Crackdown on corporate crime and corporate welfare
    * Adopt a carbon pollution tax and end tax escapes for corporations and
the wealthy
    * Reverse U.S. policy in the Middle East
    * Repeal the Taft-Hartley anti-union law
    * Adopt a Wall Street securities speculation tax
    * End corporate personhood
    * Defend, Restore and Strengthen the Civil Justice System

Ralph Nader

Ralph Nader is a consumer advocate, lawyer, and author. His latest book is
The Seventeen Solutions: Bold Ideas for Our American Future. Other recent
books include, The Seventeen Traditions: Lessons from an American
Childhood, Getting Steamed to Overcome Corporatism: Build It Together to
Win, and "Only The Super-Rich Can Save Us" (a novel).


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>From Liberal Victory to Disempowerment in Six Easy Steps
Obama and Progressives: What Will Liberals Do with Their Big Election
Victory?
by Glenn Greenwald
Published on Wednesday, November 7, 2012 by The Guardian

The greatest and most enduring significance of Tuesday night's election
results will likely not be the re-election of Barack Obama, but rather what
the outcome reflects about the American electorate. It was not merely
Democrats, but liberalism, which was triumphant.Elizabeth Warren during an
election night rally after defeating Republican Scott Brown in the
Massachusetts Senate race.

To begin with, it is hard to overstate just how crippled America's
right-wing is. Although it was masked by their aberrational win in 2010,
the GOP has now been not merely defeated, but crushed, in three out of the
last four elections: in 2006 (when they lost control of the House and
Senate), 2008 (when Obama won easily and Democrats expanded their margins
of control), and now 2012. The horrendous political legacy of George Bush
and Dick Cheney continues to sink the GOP, and demographic realities – how
toxic the American Right is to the very groups that are now becoming
America's majority – makes it difficult to envision how this will change
any time soon.

Meanwhile, new laws to legalize both same-sex marriage and marijuana use
were enacted in multiple states with little controversy, an unthinkable
result even a few years ago, while Obama's late-term embrace of same-sex
marriage seems to have resulted only in political benefit with no political
harm. Democrats were sent to the Senate by deeply red states such as
Indiana, Missouri and North Dakota, along with genuinely progressive
candidates on domestic issues, including Elizabeth Warren in Massachusetts
and Tammy Baldwin in Wisconsin, who became the first openly gay person
elected to the Senate. As a cherry on the liberal cake, two of the most
loathed right-wing House members – Rep Joe Walsh of Illinois and Allen West
of Florida – were removed from office.

So the delirium of liberals this morning is understandable: the night could
scarcely have gone better for them. By all rights, they should expect to be
a more powerful force in Washington. But what are they going to get from
it? Will they wield more political power? Will their political values and
agenda command more respect? Unless the disempowering pattern into which
they have voluntarily locked themselves changes, the answer to those
questions is almost certainly "no".

Consider the very first controversial issue Obama is likely to manage, even
before the glow of his victory dims, literally within the next couple of
weeks. It is widely expected - including by liberals - that Obama intends
(again) to pursue a so-called "Grand Bargain" with the GOP: a deficit- and
debt-cutting agreement whereby the GOP agrees to some very modest tax
increases on the rich in exchange for substantial cuts to entitlement
programs such as social security and Medicare, the crown legislative jewels
of American liberalism.

Indeed, Obama already sought in his first term to implement sizable cuts to
those programs, but liberals were saved only by GOP recalcitrance to
compromise on taxes. In light of their drubbing last night, they are likely
to be marginally if not substantially more flexible, which means that such
a deal is more possible than ever.

In other words, the political leader in whose triumph liberals are today
ecstatically basking is likely to target their most cherished government
policies within a matter of weeks, even days. With their newly minted
power, will they have any ability, or even will, to stop him? If history is
any indication, this is how this "fight" will proceed:

    STEP ONE: Liberals will declare that cutting social security and
Medicare benefits – including raising the eligibility age or introducing
"means-testing" – are absolutely unacceptable, that they will never support
any bill that does so no matter what other provisions it contains, that
they will wage war on Democrats if they try.

    STEP TWO: As the deal gets negotiated and takes shape, progressive
pundits in Washington, with Obama officials persuasively whispering in
their ear, will begin to argue that the proposed cuts are really not that
bad, that they are modest and acceptable, that they are even necessary to
save the programs from greater cuts or even dismantlement.

    STEP THREE: Many progressives – ones who are not persuaded that these
cuts are less than draconian or defensible on the merits – will nonetheless
begin to view them with resignation and acquiescence on pragmatic grounds.
Obama has no real choice, they will insist, because he must reach a deal
with the crazy, evil GOP to save the economy from crippling harm, and the
only way he can do so is by agreeing to entitlement cuts. It is a pragmatic
necessity, they will insist, and anyone who refuses to support it is being
a purist, unreasonably blind to political realities, recklessly willing to
blow up Obama's second term before it even begins.

    STEP FOUR: The few liberal holdouts, who continue to vehemently oppose
any bill that cuts social security and Medicare, will be isolated and
marginalized, excluded from the key meetings where these matters are being
negotiated, confined to a few MSNBC appearances where they explain their
inconsequential opposition.

    STEP FIVE: Once a deal is announced, and everyone from Obama to Harry
Reid and the DNC are behind it, any progressives still vocally angry about
it and insisting on its defeat will be castigated as ideologues and
purists, compared to the Tea Party for their refusal to compromise, and
scorned (by compliant progressives) as fringe Far Left malcontents.

    STEP SIX: Once the deal is enacted with bipartisan support and Obama
signs it in a ceremony, standing in front of his new Treasury Secretary,
the supreme corporatist Erskine Bowles, where he touts the virtues of
bipartisanship and making "tough choices", any progressives still
complaining will be told that it is time to move on. Any who do not will be
constantly reminded that there is an Extremely Important Election coming –
the 2014 midterm – where it will be Absolutely Vital that Democrats hold
onto the Senate and that they take over the House. Any progressive, still
infuriated by cuts to social security and Medicare, who still refuses to
get meekly in line behind the Party will be told that they are jeopardizing
the Party's chances for winning that Vital Election and – as a result of
their opposition - are helping Mitch McConnell take over control of the
Senate and John Boehner retain control of the House.

And so it goes. That is the standard pattern of self-disempowerment used by
American liberals to render themselves impotent and powerless in
Washington, not just on economic issues but the full panoply of political
disputes, from ongoing militarism, military spending and war policies to
civil liberties assaults, new cabinet appointments, immigration policy, and
virtually everything else likely to arise in the second term.

Indeed, nobody takes STEP ONE in that depressing ritual even a little bit
seriously. Nobody believes the declarations of progressives about what is
"unacceptable", about what their "red lines" are, about how they will
refuse to go along with what they are given if it contains what they
declare intolerable. That's because STEPS TWO THROUGH SIX always follow,
and until that pattern is broken, STEP ONE will continue to be viewed as a
trivial joke.

With last night's results, one can choose to see things two ways: (1)
emboldened by their success and the obvious movement of the electorate in
their direction, liberals will resolve that this time things will be
different, that their willingness to be Good Partisan Soldiers depends upon
their core values not being ignored and stomped on, or (2) inebriated with
love and gratitude for Obama for having vanquished the evil Republican
villains, they will follow their beloved superhero wherever he goes with
even more loyalty than before. One does not need to be Nate Silver to be
able to use the available historical data to see which of those two courses
is the far more likely one.
© 2012 Guardian News and Media Limited
Glenn Greenwald

Glenn Greenwald is a columnist on civil liberties and US national security
issues for the Guardian. A former constitutional lawyer, he was until 2012
a contributing writer at Salon.  His most recent book is, With Liberty and
Justice for Some: How the Law Is Used to Destroy Equality and Protect the
Powerful. His other books include: Great American Hypocrites: Toppling the
Big Myths of Republican Politics,  A Tragic Legacy: How a Good vs. Evil
Mentality Destroyed the Bush Presidency, and How Would a Patriot Act?
Defending American Values from a President Run Amok. He is the recipient of
the first annual I.F. Stone Award for Independent Journalism.


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Published on Wednesday, November 7, 2012 by The Nation
For Obama, a Bigger Win Than for Kennedy, Nixon, Carter, Bush or Bush
by John Nichols

U.S. President Barack Obama, who won a second term in office by defeating
Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney, addresses supporters during
his election night victory rally in Chicago, November 7, 2012. (REUTERS/Jim
Bourg)It wasn't even close. That's the unexpected result of the November 6
election. And President Obama and his supporters must wrap their heads
around this new reality -- just as their Republican rivals are going to
have to adjust to it.

After a very long, very hard campaign that began the night of the 2010
“Republican wave” election, a campaign defined by unprecedented spending
and take-no-prisoners debate strategies, Barack Obama was reelected
president. And he did so with an ease that allowed him to claim what even
his supporters dared not imagine until a little after 11 p.m. on the night
of his last election: a credible, national win.

“We’re not as divided as our politics suggest,” Obama told the crowd at his
victory party in Chicago.

And he was on to something.

Despite a brief delay by Republican challenger Mitt Romney, and the
commentators on Fox News, Obama claimed his victory on election night not
the next day, as Richard Nixon did in 1960, or even later, as George Bush
in 2000.

And it was a real victory.

Obama did not have to deal with the challenge of an Electoral College win
combined with a popular-vote loss -- as even some of his most ardent
supporters feared might be the case..

By the time Romney conceded at 1 a.m., Obama had a 250,000 popular-vote
lead, and it grew to roughly two million by dawn.

He was on track to win a majority of states and more than 300 Electoral
Votes – at least 303 and, with the right result in Florida, 332.

Obama's win was at least the equal of John Kennedy's in 1960 (303 electoral
votes), bigger than Richard Nixon's in 1968 (303 electoral votes), bigger
than Jimmy Carter's in 1976 (297 electoral votes), bigger than George W.
Bush's in 2000 (271 electoral votes and a popular vote loss).

And, significantly, bigger than George W. Bush in 2004, when Obama's
predecessor won just 286 electoral votes, and faced serious challenges to
the result in the state that put him across the 270 line: Ohio

Never mind, Bush claimed a broad mandate.

 “When you win, there is…  a feeling that the people have spoken and
embraced your point of view," Bush said. "And that's what I intend to tell
Congress, that I made it clear what I intend to do as the president; now
let's work."

Bush told reporters: "I earned capital in this campaign, political capital,
and now I intend to spend it. It is my style."

When Bush tried to spend his capital “reforming” Social Security, he
failed. Obama would be wise to avoid making the same mistake.

Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid do not need to be “reformed.”

They need to be strengthened and expanded.

The president could spend some of his capital on that project.

But he ought not stop there.

As he embarks upon the second term that not all presidents are given, Obama
would do well to take the counsel of National Nurses United executive
direector Rose Ann DeMoro, who said after the election, “The President and
Congress should stand with the people who elected them and reject any cuts
in Social Security, Medicare, or Medicaid, strengthen Medicare  by
expanding it to cover everyone, and insist that Wall Street begin to repay
our nation for the damage it caused our economy with a small tax on Wall
Street speculation, the Robin Hood tax.”

That reference to the Robin Hood tax is worthy of note.

President Obama ought to get serious, in his second term, about finding the
revenues to pay for the strengthening and expanding of necessary programs:
ideally by taxing the wealthy as they were in the days of America’s
greatest economic expansion, and also by imposing that  “Robin Hood Tax” on
financial transactions.

But Obama's first task should be to fix the broken political system that
imposes so many burdens on America democracy.

In his victory speech, Obama referenced the long lines in which Americans
waited to vote for him and declared: “By the way, we need to fix that.”

That’s good. The need of democratic renewal is great after an unnecessarily
crude political campaign that was, as Obama acknowledged, frequently
“small… and silly.”

The place to begin is with a project he mentioned just before the
Democratic National Convention: amending the constitution to overturn the
Supreme Court’s Citizens United decision. "Over the longer term, I think we
need to seriously consider mobilizing a constitutional amendment process to
overturn Citizens United (assuming the Supreme Court doesn't revisit it),"
the president wrote, in response to a question about the court decision to
allow corporations to spend as freely as they choose to influence
elections. "Even if the amendment process falls short, it can shine a
spotlight of the super PAC phenomenon and help apply pressure for change."

Seeking to amend the constitution to reform our election system is an
ambitious endeavor, especially for a president who has just beaten the
combined power of Karl Rove and his billionaire boys club.

But it is a necessary endeavor.

And a president who has been comfortably reelected ought not think small.
He should “spend his capital” on projects worthy of the trust Americans
have afforded him.
© 2012 The Nation
John Nichols

John Nichols is Washington correspondent for The Nation and associate
editor of The Capital Times in Madison, Wisconsin. His most recent book is
The “S” Word: A Short History of an American Tradition. A co-founder of the
media reform organization Free Press, Nichols is co-author with Robert W.
McChesney of The Death and Life of American Journalism: The Media
Revolution that Will Begin the World Again and Tragedy & Farce: How the
American Media Sell Wars, Spin Elections, and Destroy Democracy. Nichols'
other books include: Dick: The Man Who is President and The Genius of
Impeachment: The Founders' Cure for Royalism.


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