Saturday, March 31, 2007
Hold an America's Dialogue Discussion
From America's Dialogue:
I’m writing from Eugene, Oregon, to let you know about an unprecedented week of national grassroots discussions taking place April 14-22, 2007; and to invite your participation and your help in getting the word out to friends and acquaintances all across the country. The project is AMERICA’S DIALOGUE. You can get more information at AmericasDialogue.org. During this week, people will be gathering in small groups all across the country to discuss the future of America.
What kind of America, and what kind of world, do we want to see? What are our priorities as a nation and a people? These discussions will be centering around a new 42-minute video about Hiroshima, nuclear weapons, nuclear waste, and the human cost of militarism and war. The video will serve both as an educational experience for millions of Americans, young and old, and as the catalyst for our discussions about America.
The video - AMERICA’S DIALOGUE - is available on DVD; but people can also form discussion groups and view the video on their computer on our website. The following page connects you to the video on our
site and to the video on Google Video:
If you would like a DVD to show at a meeting, just let me know the exact address and I’ll be glad to send a copy. You’re free to copy the DVD and share it with others. You can also use the video as part of a fundraiser or membership drive for your own group if you like.
We’d love to hear from you - any ideas and suggestions and plans to view the video and participate in America’s Dialogue. We would also appreciate your letting anyone and everyone you know, both locally
and across this country, find out about AMERICA’S DIALOGUE. We’ll be networking with many individuals, groups and organizations all across the country to initiate an unprecedented dialogue about the future of our country.
Friday, March 30, 2007
Go ahead. Share your thoughts on any topic. Or just say hi. Or rant away. Or something. You know you want to....
Participate in Otero Mesa Public Forum and Speak Out
From the New Mexico Wilderness Alliance:
Otero Mesa Public Forum
Working to Protect New Mexico's Wildest Grassland
Thursday, April 19th, 6:30 PM-8:00 PM
Elks Lodge (2290 Hamilton Rd) in Alamogordo-FREE
Please be part of a historic day and help send a message to Washington that New Mexico's quality of life means much more than a few days worth of oil and gas! Special guest speakers include: Rick Simpson, former Lincoln County Commissioner and Outfitter; activist rancher Tweeti Walser Blancett; high school teacher and wildlife expert Steve West; energy science, policy and economics expert Bill Brown; water expert with Sandia National Labs, plus local elected officials.
Come learn what you can do to protect Otero Mesa, its wildlife, water and wilderness. RSVP or for more information, contact Nathan Newcomer at 505-843-8696 or [email protected]
Speak Out for Otero Mesa A Voice for Wilderness!
Take a few minutes to call in and voice your concerns for our wildest public lands. Our objective is to get as many voices as possible speaking out on protecting wilderness.
Please be concise and short in your comments. It is important that we get as many voices as possible speaking out on wilderness. Our objective is to create a CD of voices and present them to our congressional delegation, letting them hear, directly from you, how important wilderness is.Our Current Voices for Wilderness Campaign is focusing on Otero Mesa.
Please call (505) 333-0420 and leave a message today for our congressional delegation, urging them to support a moratorium on drilling in this wild Chihuahuan Desert grassland. To learn more about Otero Mesa please visit: www.oteromesa.org
Otero Mesa Campaign Organizer
Thursday, March 29, 2007
March into National Women's Conference. (Left to right) Billy Jean King, Susan B. Anthony II, Bella Abzug, Sylvia Ortiz, Peggy Kokernot, Michele Cearcy, Betty Friedan. Photo 1978 Diana Mara Henry / dianamarahenry.com
How about a look at Organizing for Democratic Renewal by Marshall Ganz, a Dean Campaign/DNC organizer, at TPM Cafe. Ganz provides a brief history of movement organizing in America and how we may well be moving into a new era of liberal movement politics now.
You can use this thread to discuss the topic of organizing or any other subject you might like. It's an Open Thread....
Civil Rights Leader Julian Bond to Speak in Santa Fe
Long time civil rights leader and activist Julian Bond will speak at Temple Beth Shalom in Santa Fe on Saturday, April 14, 2007 at 4:00 PM. Bond’s lecture is presented by Santa Fe’s Human Rights Alliance with sponsorship by Temple Beth Shalom. Co-hosts include the Santa Fe chapter of the NAACP, the New Mexico Holocaust and Intolerance Museum and Equality New Mexico.
Tickets for Bond’s lecture are available exclusively at the Lensic Box Office in Santa Fe or their online site. The box office can be reached at 988-1234. Tickets are $15 for the lecture and $50 for the lecture and a private reception with Mr. Bond afterwards. Temple Beth Shalom, the lecture site, is located at 205 E. Barcelona Road. Additional parking is available at the Unitarian Universalist Congregation, St. John’s United Methodist Church and Immanuel Lutheran Church, all located on Barcelona Road.
In an October 2006 interview with the gay news magazine The Advocate, Bond spoke out against homophobia in the African American community and linked it directly to the spread of AIDS among black people. He stated, “Homophobia is one of the major obstacles to black Americans coming to grips with this disease in the ways that we should. It is awfully disturbing. It’s a refutation of what the movement for civil rights stood for. It’s disgraceful.”
Julian Bond, who has served as the Chairman of the Board of the NAACP since 1998, began his civil rights activism in 1960 as one of the founders of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) while he was a student at Morehouse College in Atlanta. He was active in civil rights protests and voter registration drives across the South. In 1968 he was co-chair of the challenge delegation from Georgia to the Democratic National Convention that successfully unseated Georgia’s regular Democrats.
In 1965 he was first elected to the Georgia House of Representatives but was prevented from taking his seat due to his opposition to the Viet Nam war. Bond was elected twice again before the United States Supreme Court ruled unanimously that the Georgia House had violated his rights in denying him his seat. In 1974, Bond was elected to the Georgia Senate where he served until 1987. His tenure ended after an unsuccessful run for Congress in 1986 that prevented him from seeking re-election to the state senate. At that time, Bond had been elected to public office more times than any other black Georgian in history.
Bond was also the first president of the Southern Poverty Law Center at its founding in 1971, and he continues to serve on its board of directors today. He also serves on the Boards of the People for the American Way and the Council for a Livable World. He is currently a Distinguished Scholar in Residence at the American University in Washington, D.C. and a professor in the history department at the University of Virginia.
Wednesday, March 28, 2007
Check Out Peace & Sustainability Fair at UNM
Indoors along with the vendors and booths:
11:00 A.M. Welcoming Statement followed by Keynote Speaker Demetria Martinez
12:30 - 1:30 Global Warming Panel Discussion
1:30 - 2:00 Hiroshima; Survivors of the Atom Bomb - Holly Siebert Kawakami
Marda Permaculture Farm in the West Bank of Palestine - Tami Brunk
2:00 - 3:30 Militarization Panel Discussion
3:30 - 4:00 African Drummers
4:00 - 5:30 New Mexico Food Shed Project Panel Discussion
5:30 - 6:00 Slam Poetry
6:00 - 7:00 Keynote Speaker Keith McHenry (cofounder of Food not Bombs)
- Sustainability Activities throughout the day
- Veggie/Ethanol Car display and demonstrations
- Bio-Processor demonstrations
- Solar equipment demonstrations
- Live Music
For more information contact: Susi Knoblauch, Office of International Programs and Studies, 2111 Mesa Vista Hall, UNM, contact: 505-277-4032 or [email protected]
LAST CHANCE TO REGISTER for 3/31 Network of Spiritual Progressives Workshop
PASSION AND SKILLS: SPIRITUAL PROGRESSIVES WORKING TOGETHER, a day-long workshop to learn about Spiritual Activism, is set for Saturday, March 31, from 9 AM to 5 PM, at the First Unitarian Church at Carlisle and Comache in Albuquerque. The event is organized by the Northern New Mexico and Albuquerque chapters of the Network of Spiritual Progressives (NSP). Click for flyer (doc) for more info. The registration fee of $35 includes a vegetarian lunch. Please register now or request information by calling 505-983-2443 in Santa Fe or 505-323-6162 in Albuquerque.
SpiritualProgressives.org (national organization)
SpiritualProgressivesNewMexico.org (Northern New Mexico chapter in Santa Fe)
Albuquerque-NSP.org (Albuquerque chapter)
Gov. Richardson on Daily Show, Hardball Tonight
In Albuquerque, this show will be seen tonight on Comcast Cable's Comedy Central channel 48 at Midnight, and rebroadcast at 2:00 AM, 11:00 AM, 3:00 PM and 9:00 PM on Thursday, according to TV Guide. Soon after broadcast, video clips are available at The Daily Show website. Richardson will also be on Hardball with Chris Matthews today, which airs on Comcast Cable's MSNBC channel 30 at 3:00 PM, 5:00 PM and 2:00 AM Mountain Time. Video clips and transcripts of past shows are provided at the Hardball website.
Tuesday, March 27, 2007
We're leaving tomorrow morning for some red rock relaxing in Sedona, AZ. We'll be back late next Tuesday. I've set up some automatic posts, including some open threads, to keep you at least minimally informed and entertained while I'm gone. If I can get some decent access to the internets, I'll check in from the road. The folks who'll be housesitting for us will be minding our seven parakeets, but Bosco the peach-faced lovebird and Sunny the sun conure will be traveling with us, as they usually do. They love to see new places and look out the window at the scenery. You might not think they would, but they do! (See them on the road, below the fold.)
To keep current, be sure to visit the other local political blogs. Links can easily be found on our left-hand sidebar under NM Blogs. If you've got some hot news or are itching to post some important info, why not try creating a diary at New Mexico FBIHOP, which recently became a community blog. Just register there using the link at the top right-hand corner and you, too, can be a blogger.
Mary Ellen totes Sunny and Bosco in their fancy traveling cages at a mountain lake in Colorado
Video: Gov. Richardson Speaks at HRC Dinner in L.A.
As anyone following the back and forth on the NM Legislature's Special Session knows, Governor Bill Richardson spoke this weekend at a Human Rights Campaign (HRC) dinner in Los Angeles. He discusses some of his legislative initiatives in New Mexico including those concerning clean energy, a minimum wage raise, medical marijuana and tax cuts, as well as his record on GLBT civil rights, including the domestic partnership bill awaiting a vote by the Senate in our continuing Special Session. Quote:
"I want a domestic partnership bill so I can sign it right now, this year, soon. And I'm pushing this bill because I believe all families deserve our respect no matter their race, creed, sexual orientation. I think people realize that this bill is a victory for fairness and equality as well as to open hearts and open minds. So far my state senate has not agreed. But I'm gonna keep pushing ... This bill is as important to me as it is to you.
Let's hope our NM Senators see this issue through the same prism of fairness and equality for all New Mexican families, and vote to pass it on Thursday, when they are due to reconvene in Santa Fe. The bill has passed the NM House in both our regular Legislative Session and the Special Session. To those awaiting at least basic legal protections under civil law, every year that passes without this legislation is another year at risk.
The HRC release on Gov. Richardson's speech said,
New Mexico Governor and 2008 presidential candidate Bill Richardson pledged his support for equal domestic partnership rights, fighting HIV/AIDS internationally and repealing the military’s anti-gay “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy as keynote speaker at the annual Human Rights Campaign Los Angeles Gala Dinner on Saturday.
‘This country is tired of the politics of hatred and division. What we need in this country is someone that can bring us together,” said Gov. Richardson. “Gay and lesbian families deserve respect. What we don’t need are constitutional amendments designed to exclude supportive, devoted couples. We need to extend the rights due to all of us as Americans.”
The HRC Los Angeles Gala Dinner was attended by over 1000 HRC members and supporters, including Marine Sgt. Eric Alva (ret.), spokesperson for HRC’s efforts to repeal “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” and comedian Bill Maher, who received the 2007 HRC Equality Award.
Click for a transcript of the speech.
The Human Rights Campaign is America’s largest civil rights organization working to achieve gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender equality. By inspiring and engaging all Americans, HRC strives to end discrimination against GLBT citizens and realize a nation that achieves fundamental fairness and equality for all.
Monday, March 26, 2007
More on Controversial Taos County Dem Party Elections
A collection of audio clips and photos from the Democratic Party of Taos County Central Committee last week are provided by CulturalEnergy.org (scroll down to stories of week of March 26, 2007 and click the Central Committee meeting link). After a meeting filled with arcane parliamentarian maneuvers and rulings, Chuby Tafoya was elected as Taos County Chair in a victory over the current County Chair, Billy Knight.
The manner in which some of the County Party's earlier precinct elections were conducted was widely criticised, with challenges ultimately filed against the validity of the elections in five precincts. Next came a County Credentials Committee meeting, where the challenges were dismissed against four precincts where many of Chuby Tafoya's supporters reside. Many claim this was done without a proper review by the Credentials Committee of affidavits and ballots submitted to document alleged irregularities and rule breaking. One challenge, by Chuby Tafoya's supporters in the large Arroyo Hondo precinct, where most of Billy Knight's supporters (as well as Tafoya) live, was accepted by the Credentials Committee without a review.
Attendees report that despite the presence of the Executive Director of the Democratic Party of New Mexico, the DNC Field Organizer, Joseph Casados, and the State Party Parliamentarian, Robert Beck, on hand to chair the Credentials Committee meeting, not one single person was credentialed and not one single precinct's election documentation examined. Many who witnessed it are calling it an astounding display of incompetence and a violation of Party rules.
Taos County Central Committee Meeting
The audio clips are from the County Central Committee meeting where the Credentials Committee rulings were accepted in violation of the Party rules, and a majority voted to keep the Arroyo Hondo precinct winners from voting in the County Chair election. Some of the speakers describe their reactions to the Arroyo Hondo precinct delegation being kept from voting based on what they deem to be murky and minor technicalities, if any, while other more serious precinct election challenges were set aside without any real review of the evidence by the Credential Committee. Indeed, it seems that clear evidence of the alleged ballot tampering by Tafoya's father was suppressed from examination by the majority vote of the Tafoya-dominated Credentials Committee.
From approximately 7 minutes until 13 minutes on the audio recording, Margarita Denevan gives an especially passionate and clear defense of how the rules were clearly and closely followed in the Arroyo Hondo precinct elections -- ironically, the only precinct where the Credentials Committee saw supposed violations.
After the voting for County Chair was finished at the CCC meeting, giving Chuby Tafoya a victory without any votes from the Arroyo Hondo precinct, the majority voted to reinstate the Arroyo Hondo delegation.
What Comes Next
Emotions continue to run high in Taos, and much criticism continues to be leveled by many of those who attended the Credentials Committee meeting on State Party parliamentarian Robert Beck and Executive Director Matt Farrauto, who were present but did not question the proceedings. It's being alleged that the Credential Committee did not even vote to approve the credentials of those who were allowed to vote at the County Central Committee meeting, and the legality of holding the County Central Committee meeting itself was questioned by incumbent Chair Billy Knight. Knight reportedly intends to challenge precinct elections in three precincts — Talpa, Cruz Alta and Ranchitos — to the state party’s judicial committee.
This is a complicated and emotional situation and it has been somewhat difficult to get and communicate a clear narrative of what happened at the Taos Dem meetings from the reports I'm getting from up north. I hope I'm getting it right so far, as information continues to be released.
Previously Available Material
Check my earlier post that lists some of the challenges that were later to be filed against various precinct elections. There's also material on New Mexico Matters that describes alleged violations in one precinct, as well as scanned precinct ballots that show alleged tampering. There's also coverage of an article published by the Taos Daily Horse Fly, which presents the controversy as a rather humorous anecdote, rather than a serious situation where precinct election fraud is being alleged and the process by which Dem Party rules were applied (or not) is being challenged.
Vets for Peace Santa Fe to Offer War Stories
From Veterans for Peace Santa Fe:
Save April 5, 3-5 PM for a presentation entitled WAR STORIES. Daniel Craig and Tim Origer of the Joan Duffy Santa Fe Chapter of Veterans for Peace will read personal essays describing their experiences in war and the effects these experiences have had on their lives. These are the monologues Tim and Daniel read for the Lensic Core Witness program. If you missed that program, here is your chance to hear their graphic and compelling stories. If you attended the program, you will want to hear them again.
Ken Simonsen, also of VFP, will lead an open discussion after the readings. This event is sponsored by the Renesan Institute of Lifelong Learning and is open to everyone. Come and support the presenters. Bring your neighbors. Bring your friends. Bring young people.
Place: St. John's Methodist Church, 1200 Old Pecos Trail.
Time: 3-5 PM, Thursday, April 5.
Admission: $5 Renesan members, $7 non-members, payable at the door.
Questions? Martha or Ken, [email protected].