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I got a call today from Seattle Firefighters asking for $10.00. It's not much but I'm on Social Security and every dime counts. But hey, Firefighters! So I put the check in the envelope. Then I checked Facebook and clicked through to Obama 2012 asking for another donation. Then Senator Cantwell and the DCCC. The final straw was the Share Our Strength - no vacation from hunger for millions and millions of American kids. A friend of mine works for Catholic Community Services.  He told me that when they have more people in need than ever, donations have dwindled and they are desperate for funds. There seems to be no end to the misery.

Back in the other Washington, Republicans have filibustered democracy to death.  We may as well admit that the Fascists are running the show.  They don't care about twenty million starving American kids.  That will play nicely in Romney's Blame Obama Tour.   Romney could hardly contain his glee as the RNC cheered a rise in the unemployment numbers.  A Romney Aide openly admits that Republicans are slowing economic recovery to help defeat Democrats in November.  They think our pain is worth their gain.

What are we to do till then?  Suffer silently glued to our televisions hoping Rachel or Keith or some Media savior will preach political gospel and ease our fears.  And while we struggle, making do and holding on - how many billions will go into the war of words that resulted from Citizens United?  Every time I see a commercial I think Ka-ching - with what that commercial cost, families could be fed, bridges could be repaired or classrooms retrofitted.  After months of this non-stop vitrol, what will all these millions  have accomplished but to make us hate ALL Politicians.  ALL Government.

Wait a minute!
What if the donations went to stop foreclosures, feed hungry kids and rebuild our nation? What if those phone calls from the campaign weren't to ask for money but to ask what you need. Or to ask if you can help neighbors. Can you spare a few hours to help a food pantry? Do you know about this job training program? Have you heard of this place that offers summer programs for kids and lunch is free? More than anything else, a comforting voice saying, "We've faced hard times before, we will survive.  We're all Americans"

What if the campaign offices were the home of community organizers not campaign workers. What if we don't play the Carl Rove/Frank Luntz game?  What if we can't wait till 2013.  What if we start now.  What if we don't talk about the way forward, we just start moving?  What if we save ourselves?  We can't wait.

What was it Jesus said?  Know them by their fruits?
Let's grow fruit!

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Comment Preferences

  •  I've adjusted my donations the way you suggest- (7+ / 0-)

    direct aide to people who use it to buy a meal or pay for something to help them survive.  I'm done giving to the organizations.  It's time to cut out the middle men.

    If the plutocrats begin the program, we will end it. -- Eugene Debs.

    by livjack on Sat Jun 16, 2012 at 02:25:18 PM PDT

    •  That's not what I meant. eom (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      xanthippe2, weck

      It's never too late to have a happy childhood - Tom Robbins

      by stillonline on Sat Jun 16, 2012 at 02:31:53 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I'm with you on this. There is a family shelter (0+ / 0-)

      four miles from here where mothers wait in a bus kiosk to look for work, to go to work and to look for some place else to stay when their time is the shelter is up.  Taking the $25 I would have sent to one group or another and changing it into five fives to press into the hands of those who wait for the bus will go directly to helping with their problems.  If I had more, I could do more.  I wish the Kochs and Adelsons would invest in civilization rather than power and influencve.

      Romney went to France instead of serving in our military, got rich chop-shopping US businesses and eliminating US jobs, off-shored his money in the Cayman Islands, and now tells us to "Believe in America."

      by judyms9 on Sat Jun 16, 2012 at 07:53:33 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  by the way--if the government spent a fraction of (6+ / 0-)

    what they've spent to bail out the banks who just took it and SAT on it directly to homeowners, students, etc., we'd all be a lot better off.

    It is a huge irony that these mega, global institutions who don't give a flying F about us are what's being bailed out with threats to us of the world ending if we don't.  

    I don't buy it any longer.

    If the plutocrats begin the program, we will end it. -- Eugene Debs.

    by livjack on Sat Jun 16, 2012 at 02:27:54 PM PDT

  •  People that changed the game (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    hungrycoyote, stillonline, weck, zooecium

    •  Fantastic! That's It! (5+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      xanthippe2, GDbot, phonegery, weck, cynndara

      That is exactly what I mean!  In Seattle you dial 211 and it's a Community Resources Hotline.  I don't know if other cities have it but they should.  "Low information voters" also don't know that help is available or they are too proud to ask.  If a campaign worker asks for a donation and the person says, "I have no food!" - they can quit the sales pitch and offer a few referral numbers to food banks or places that serve meals.  Or someone has no ID.  Or referral to free legal services for homeowners.  People who have no cash left to donate can donate tine with charities.  I know this is Pollyanna but so is a Black President.

      It's never too late to have a happy childhood - Tom Robbins

      by stillonline on Sat Jun 16, 2012 at 04:23:01 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Not Pollyanna at all. (0+ / 0-)

        This is what a REAL political organization -- whether a medieval church or a Daly-era Chicago ward -- does to earn its power.  This is the nuts and bolts of the "corruption" that runs Italy, Greece, Romania, and most of the Mediterranean world.  It's the rule that in order to get help and support, you don't just demand something from people.  You give something to people.  If you want to rule, first you have to learn to serve.

    •  awesome video right on point. eom (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      You can safely assume you have created God in your own image when it turns out that God hates all the same people you do. Anne Lamott

      by zooecium on Sun Jun 17, 2012 at 01:26:59 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Exactly. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    deli lama

    Electoral politics is moribund.  The major competing interest groups are locked in a situation known as "stasis" in ancient Greece, where it destroyed most of the democratic city-states . . . multiple times.  There's a reason that Greek democracy didn't survive, and what we call "gridlock" was a major part of it.

    Better to invest in getting on with the next phase of civilization. Building local institutions and cooperative "self-help" organizations that keep community resources (of which MONEY is only a part) in the community, taking care of people, building a better world for the future -- one that doesn't involve having between 30 and 90% of the value of every transaction stripped out and suctioned off to already gruesomely rich parasites operating through financial or political organizations.

    Despite the loud public claims of "economies of scale", large organizations are economical (and profitable) only for a very few sharks sitting at the top of a huge pyramid.  For everyone else, they are a drain on wealth and resources, because large organizations by their nature are inefficient.  The larger they are, the more resources must be allocated simply to organize, communicate, and negotiate strategies and resource allocations between members.  We all know this problem intuitively when we compare how long it takes to make a decision or work out a solution when a committee of a dozen is involved, as opposed to three or four friends or family.

    If you want to improve the world, improve the world.  Commit random acts of kindness and senseless acts of beauty.  Make your political contributions -- and they ARE contributions, and often more effective than TV commercials -- by carrying groceries to your sick neighbor, neutering and feeding a stray cat, growing an organic garden and giving away the produce.  You can be a builder, a destroyer, or a bag of hot air.  Under most conditions, it's builders who are needed the most.

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