Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Step It Up 2007

Step It Up 2007 Is a huge campaign to reduce carbon emissions 80% by 2050. Ok, this is giving me some hope! Here's something painless to do.

Subject: Tell Congress we need bold leadership on climate change


I just took action on a petition asking Congress for bold leadership on climate change. We need big cuts in our greenhouse gas emissions and they have to happen soon. There were almost 1,400 events last weekend to ask for 80% reductions by 2050. You can add you voice to the call by clicking on the link below and signing the petition.


Monday, April 16, 2007

Are You Willing To Get Arrested?

Garry Kasparov gave up being world chess champion to get arrested for "shouting antigovernment slogans." Any time you go to a protest, in Russia or the U.S., you run the risk of getting arrested.

During a break in a hearing at a central Moscow court on charges of shouting antigovernment slogans, according to Reuters, Mr. Kasparov said: “Today the regime showed its true colors, its true face. I believe this was a great victory for the opposition because people got through and the march happened.”

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Danny Glover's Activism

Here's Danny Glover on activism. This article talks about his beginnings in activism in labor unions, his belief that young people are important to activism, and his idea that he wants people to make their own choices. He believes that if people get educated and get involved in the process, they create a world based on their vision.

Maybe, but will that world be a better world? I guess I'm more skeptical and pessimistic about human nature than he is. I'm not sure we can understand the issues or even when we understand the issues (global warming for example) we can get ourselves motivated and organized to do something good about it. Of course there are examples to prove me wrong (civil rights) but overall we seem to be on an irreversible downward trend.

Glover sees the big issues faces us to be inequality, exploitation, and global poverty.

Glover explained that he does not aim to use his celebrity status to encourage people to think and act as he does but to get people thinking for themselves.

"I want people to be thoughtful, intellectual and analytical about the decisions they make as citizens, informed citizens. And that is what I am here to talk about. What is the avenue? What is the journey we take to inform citizenry?"

"I happen to be, because of my background and because of my age, I happen to come up in a time when citizenry was taken very seriously. The citizens got up and did things, profound things," Glover commented. "Whether they were celebrities or whether they were just ordinary working people, men and women, children, young people too, got up and made a profound statement about how they wanted to be included in the process. That's all I want people to do."

Glover explained that once people get involved in the important issues of today's generation they begin to develop ideas about how to resolve the issues. As they grow more knowledgeable and formulate more solutions, change occurs.

"Once they are included in the process then they begin to have ideas on how they want to shape the process. And how they shape the process reflects on how they want to shape their lives or the vision in which they want to see the world, a vision of the world they want to create," Glover explained.

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Pope Criticizes Capitalism

In comments to a previous post, Impenetrable One tried to defend political apathy by voicing his support for capitalism. Well you're going against the Pope now my friend. Scared?

"Confronted with the abuse of economic power, with the cruelty of capitalism that degrades man into merchandise, we have begun to see more clearly the dangers of wealth and we understand in a new way what Jesus intended in warning us about wealth."

Friday, April 06, 2007

Activism 101

I'm confused. How is a busy person with a job and a family supposed to be politically active? Maybe I just need to take more vitamins, but I find it difficult. For example, you can give money, but once you give they keep asking and asking and asking and it gets depressing. You can knock on doors, but I don't really like doing that--and it's really hard work and time consuming. You can send emails, but how much good does that really do? Some I guess. Should I volunteer for Moveon? Should I volunteer for the Democratic party? Should I work on a local campaign? Should I get a job that's political and professionalize my activism? How much time should I spend on my day job versus activism? Do I just need to shut up and get busy? Everyone has to figure out their own answers to these questions I guess at their various stages of life. It would be interesting to me to hear people's stories of how they have worked these things out for themselves.

There are way too many political blogs that just repeat political news with a comment to the effect of our side--yay/their side--boo. I'd love to see a blog with stories about everyday people who are figuring out how to put some kind of activism in their lives. Anyone know of anything like this? Anyone want to be a part of starting something like this?

Ok let me answer my own question. ZNet has something like this called Inspirational Interviews. I'm going to read some of them.

Thursday, April 05, 2007

Senator Arlen Specter deserves a piece of your mind. Despite knowing that Pennsylvania residents want our troops out of Iraq, Specter voted again last week to give President Bush a blank check for his endless war.

This Thursday—April 5—at 7:00pm in Philadelphia, Pennsylvanians Against Escalation in Iraq are holding a town hall meeting where local veterans and concerned area residents will discuss the overwhelming support for ending the Iraq war. Media will be in attendance and a strong message will be sent to Specter to stop voting against the will of his constituents.

Pennsylvanian's Against Escalation in Iraq—Town Hall Meeting
Where: Friends Center, Martin Luther King Room (3rd floor), N 15th St & Cherry Street, Philadelphia, PA 19102.
When: Thursday, April 5, 2007—7:00pm

Below is more information on Specter's vote.

This is a tipping point in the debate around Iraq: For the first time since the war started a little over four years ago, the House and Senate have passed a deadline to end it. Senate and House negotiators will now hammer out a joint bill to be voted on in April and be sent to President Bush's desk.

Senator Specter is trying to hide his support for Bush's endless war from voters—but Thursday's town hall will discuss his vote and hold him accountable. Let's make sure he hears what voters are feeling so that in April he votes to bring our troops home.

Bullet points:

  • Despite knowing that Pennsylvania residents overwhelmingly want our troops out of Iraq, Senator Specter voted again last week to give President Bush a blank check for his open-ended war. He voted against binding legislation that would actually change the course in Iraq.
  • Senator Specter chose party politics over the views of local constituents—siding against a majority of the Senate and an overwhelming majority of the public.
  • Senator Specter needs to do more than talk the talk when it comes to Iraq—it's time to walk the walk. When it was time to stand up and be counted, Specter failed to stand up to the President.
  • For years, Pennsylvania residents have been demanding an exit strategy for the woefully mismanaged war. The longer we're in Iraq, the worse things get. The American people understand this, Senator Specter's colleagues understand this, why doesn't Senator Specter seem to understand it?
  • After four long years, the deaths of over 3,200 American soldiers, tens of thousands wounded and almost $400 billion spent, the people of Pennsylvania have had enough. It's simply embarrassing that Senator Specter still does not have the courage to stand up to the president on Iraq.

Wednesday, April 04, 2007


I saw Obama has raised more money than Hilary. I'm thinking about contributing to him. Lots of politics to pay attention to, lets get back into it!