Becoming Active in Local Political Parties

The year 2016 has been one for the record books. I wonder what historians will have to say about this year. We’ve all lived it, so there’s no need for me to go over it with you. I am thankful for Election 2016. Not happy, mind you, but thankful. This election season has finally caused people to wake up. Millions are filled with energy and realizing that it is up to each one of us to regain control of this country. We The People are the one’s with the power. We just need to accept it and do something with that power.

There are many ways to channel all the energy people are feeling. Many groups are gaining a lot of members and donations since Nov 8. There’s hundreds, if not thousands, of new groups springing up to help people participate in this democratic experiment called the United States of America. It doesn’t feel very united right now, but we do have the ability to fix that.

I have never felt so strongly compelled to lend my voice and energy to this revolution. It truly is a revolution. No longer are people willing to put up with our government being controlled my monied interests. We’ve all seen the damage this has caused. Enough is enough. It’s time to overthrow that paradigm and begin focusing on forming a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity.

The Constitution gives that right to We The People, but, because we’ve been easily lolled to sleep, we’ve managed to give that power away.

I’ve been on an adventure the past few weeks. One part of that adventure has been joining many groups that are wanting to bring about change. I’ve seen a recurring sentiment in most. People are begging for ways to do something beyond donating dollars to causes.

A quick and easy way to channel this energy that’s boiling over is to start participating in local government. There’s a few ways, but at the moment, it’s urgent to get involved in your local Democratic Parties. It’s easy, as I’ll explain below.

The reason it’s crucial now is because the Democratic Party is choosing who will lead it for the next two years. Filling those positions with progressive voices will make a big difference during that time. These elections are going on now and for the next few weeks.

For more information about the importance, see this article from the Seattle Weekly:

Bernie Supporters Seem to Be Staging a Revolt in the Washington Democratic Party

Bernie Supporters Seem to Be Staging a Revolt in the Washington Democratic Party

To find out what’s happening in your area, do a Facebook search for your city, county and state Democratic Party. Their Facebook page will likely tell when the next meetings are and link to their website, where you will find more information.

See what you can find out about the Party structure and who the candidates are for these positions. Have questions ready for the candidates. Consider becoming a committee member, which will give you the ability to vote for state party members and give you a role in providing direction for your local party.

Let your friends know and search around for any local group that wants to participate. There’s been a multitude of groups that have formed recently. Search Facebook and local papers for them. Help others become involved. You’ll be amazed at how easy this will be. Millions of people are looking for ways to get active.

Becoming active in the local party will give you some skills so you can take the next step, if you choose – running for elected office. Whether the local school board, city council or other positions that affect your community.

We will be providing more guides in the near future, so stay tuned. We are just getting a few things up and running and ironing out the kinks. Just like all of you, we are looking forward to being apart of this movement.

 

Is the Dakota Access Decision Just a Smokescreen?

While I applaud the Obama administration for temporarily denying the permit for construction of the final portion of the Dakota Access Pipeline, my cynical side is raising its hand telling me to, “Pay Attention”. The way this news is being presented is misleading.

An example is this statement from an article in the Huffington Post:

“Federal authorities have halted construction [sierraclub.org] of the controversial Dakota Access Pipeline amid growing protests that were expected to draw some 2,000 U.S. military veterans. [huffingtonpost.com]

The Department of the Army has denied the final easement [army.mil] required for the $3.8 billion project to cross under Lake Oahe in North Dakota, it announced Sunday.”

The pipeline has NOT been halted. The final easement has NOT been denied.

From Army will not grant easement for Dakota Access Pipeline crossing [army.mil] “Instead, it will conduct an Environmental Impact Statement to examine the impacts and explore alternative routes, it said.”

This statement by the Army Corps of Engineers is very likely a diversion. Explore alternative routes? Energy Transfer Partners has made it clear this route is the only route they plan to take. Dakota Access Pipeline operator lashes out at decision to halt construction [theverge.com]

An EIS is a welcomed move, but it’s something that should have taken place a long time ago. Oil company lawyers have found a way around the National Environmental Protection Act procedures intended protect our lands*. It appears to me that the Army Corp of Engineers has not put up much resistance to the use of these loopholes by Energy Transfer Partners; nor has this administration.

Publicity of #NoDAPL action and large numbers of vets showing up to protect the Water Protectors has caused Energy Transfer Partners and their minions to realize they’ve lost this battle and they can no longer continue operating in the way they have been – using abusive measures against indigenous people of a sovereign nation that had, so often in the past, been beat down.

This temporary pause by the Army Corp of Engineers is likely just a smokescreen.

This tactic has been tried before. Obama Administration’s Suspension of Contested Dakota Access Pipeline Construction Demonstrates Strength of Indigenous Climate Justice Movement [sierraclub.org] back in September comes to mind.  Don’t let this latest attempt at diverting attention succeed.

The #NoDAPL movement is at a cross roads. All of us must stay vigilant or the pipeline will not be stopped.

I’ve been politically involved and paying attention since the late 60’s. I’ve seen a lot of diversionary tactics and their results. When it’s obvious that your actions can no longer win this battle, what would you do if you wanted to see DAPL completed? How about make people think they won so they ‘move along, there’s nothing to see here’. This will likely cause dispersal of people at the camps and lessening of support. Publicity will also be easier to stifle.

One of the very promising results of this election is that millions of people have realized that they can no longer remain quiet against this kind of injustice. If a lot of people are fooled into allowing their focus to be diverted from DAPL, the narrative will change. Media can easily stop reporting on this issue. Gearing back up will take time, especially if the forces-that-be create more barricades for allies to gather. By that time, the pipeline will be completed and the Trump administration will be in control.

I really hope this won’t be the case here, but I have strong doubts. I feel it is imperative that we keep supporting the Standing Rock Sioux and maintain the momentum the Water Protectors have initiated until this is fully resolved.

Here are some ways you can help:

Standing Rock Sioux Tribe DAPL Donation Fund  [paypal.com]

Official Sacred Stone Camp GoFundMe [gofundme.com]

Stay informed – Indian Country Today News  [indiancountrytodaymedianetwork.com]

*I apologize for not having a source for this. I read this a few days ago but unable to find it. Perhaps an alert reader can help supply documentation.