Netroots Nation 2012 started just a few days after the Wi$con$in recall elections, and served as an extremely cathartic experience for me.
In particular, I was quite proud to join the panel Take a Walk, Scott: Post Mortem of the Wisconsin recalls that dug deeply into what happened and where we go from here.
Two main points emerged during the discussion: that the power of Wall Street and the 1% to subvert our democracy by buying elections is getting exponentially worse, and that the Democratic party failed to understand the broader occupation-inspired movement growing in response to this dynamic.
One exchange during the panel especially speaks to this, when right wingnut CNN contributor Dana Loesch of Breitbart News asked a question indicative of the pathetic attitudes clouding the overarching issue of money in our politics.
As I described in the opening of this post, Netroots Nation was cathartic indeed!
And catharsis is needed, since regrettably, far too often these issues become intertwined even for potential partners who we wish would otherwise be on our side. When rhetoric and political action does not reflect the reality that our democracy is for sale, it can act as an alarm bell to the countless Americans suffering from this class war that has been officially declared on working families.
It is in this context that Andy Kroll’s analysis that the popular uprising of Wisconsin was sold out by electoral politics rings so true. This was also articulated during the Netroots Nation ‘Wisconsin caucus’ organized by Dane101, where Cheddarsphere bloggers, activists and Rep. Paul Ryan opponent Rob Zerban collectively attempted to synthesize where we are.
And as we continue to work to pinpoint the problem and search for a solution, let us also take heed of the tangible damage that will continue to be done to the day to day lives of so many Wisconsinites. If only considering that Wi$con$in is already being explicitly cited as a model that will soon be followed across the country.
Likewise, sending any form of solidarity to our Cheesehead-clad brethren would undoubtedly be appreciated, even through an action as simple as tweeting to #SolidarityWI.
And let us recognize that the fight is absolutely not over in Wisconsin, whose state motto -- Forward -- couldn’t ring any truer.