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This is an Open Thread / Coffee Hour and all topics of conversation are welcome. Today's suggested topic is metonymy and a update on the Vallejo City Council candidates that are running for the 4 open seats in the upcoming November election.  Specifically, the candidate that is associated with New Apostolic Reformation.

What is for dinner? How are you doing? What is on your mind. If you are new to Street Prophets please introduce yourself beyond the fold in a comment. This is an Open Thread / Coffee Hour and all topics of conversation are welcome.

Local politics is difficult because in town like Vallejo there are only a few thousand persons that regularly vote in the elections.  And, I find my self counting voter blocks along the following lines of how many votes each group will deliver.  

1) Vallejo Faith Organization: 1200 to 1500 votes
2) Labor: 1500 to 2000 votes
3) Democratic Party: 1500 to 2000 votes
4) Business: 1500 to 2000 votes
5) Republican Party: 100 or less votes
6) Independents: 2000 to 2500 votes
7) LBGT: 1000 - 1500 votes
8) Far Left: 500 - 1000 votes
9) Filipino Community: 1000 - 1500 votes

To win an election one has to get the votes from at least 4 of the larger blocks. So the endorsement process is very important. One of the candidates, a Democrat, asked for the Solano County Democratic Parties endorsement. What is unusual about this request is the candidate is a pastor and is heavily involved in Ed Silvoso's Transformation movement.  In the past candidates sponsored by the Vallejo Faith Organization ran independent campaigns.

So, as president of my local Democratic club I find my self refereeing a very contentious battle between 6 Democrats for 4 seats. Today I'm going to talk a bit about our candidate of faith. (I'm not mentioning his name, because I'm still clarifying my role process and the candidate nomination period starts on July 16. So his running is not official yet. Even though he announced it in the news paper last month.)

Following is an excerpt from the summary of the last meeting our club had, this will be sent out the club members and the candidates.  (Note: I'm substituting "Faith Candidate" for the name of the candidate.  And, I'm using the word "Dominionism" to substitute for a philosophy of governance."  These are examples of the use of Metonymy.)

United Democrats will be having ongoing informal discussions with the candidates for Vallejo City council at each of our meetings during the run up to the election.  And, we plan a number of public forums to allow the public to get to know the candidates.   I would like to take this time remind each of the canidates that the Solano County Democratic Central Committee will make the endorsement not the United Democrats club. However our club will have a great influence in the process.

Present at the meeting was two of the candidates running and the campaign manager from a third candidate.  Not present was the faith candidate. The other two candidates sent me very nice emails explaining their absence.  Also, in attendance was one sitting council member who is not up for re-election.

Things started of explosively. Some of the guests present at the meeting ask me to “censor” the faith candidate, and disallow his participation in the “getting to know” the candidates process.  However, as I explained to those present, as a representative of the Democratic Party, I felt I had a duty to allow all Democrats running for this office to get a fair opportunity to present their qualifications for office and their philosophies that form their approach to governance.

Frankly, I was surprised at the animosity of the directed to me when I stated that faith candidate would be give every opportunity to present their approach to governance.  I was accused, in a pejorative way, of being an heterosexual and insensitive to LBGT concerns.

Another faction present also got upset about being reminded of their use of the term “union thug” in a past campaign. These exchanges led to one individual walking out of the meeting.  Going forward as chairperson of these forums and meetings I will make every attempt to discourage the use of purgatives in our meetings.  It is a violation of the clubs code of conduct.  (Pejoratives often metonyms and one can find other ways of expression things without being inflammatory.)

A review the highlights of the meeting.  (Note I'm substituting "faith candidate" for the name of candidate and I'm using "Dominionism" as a substitute for the candidates philosophy of governance.  These are examples of the use of Metonymy.

1) I presented hard copies of the 2012 Democratic Party Platform to the candidates and campaign managers present. I reminded the candidates that the eligibility for endorsement by the Democratic party depends on their acceptance and support of the California Democratic Party Platform.

2) As part of due diligence, on my part, the trailer for the “Transformation Vallejo” movie was shown. However, I could not locate a copy of the actual video that was shown on  June 1, 2012 at the Union Baptist Church. I’m hoping the Faith Candidate can make the video public on YouTube so the electorate can inform themselves of the candidate's plans for transforming Vallejo. Clearly, I appreciate the sincerity of the Faith Candidate's efforts in staring in this video and I think it will be central to the public’s understanding the candidate's approach to governance.  When the Faith Candidate makes the movie available to the public I will be prepared to show it at our next meeting. Or if needed we will find a larger venue to host it.   Also note, I’m expecting all the other candidates to attend the next meeting or any special showings of the movie and equal time will be offered to them for an uninterrupted presentation of similar length.  Followed by a moderated discussion between the candidates.

3) As part of due diligence, on my part, I presented to the club a Resource Directory for the New Apostolic Reformation(From the Talk to Action website) Review of this document will allow the club to understand the philosophy behind the “Transformation Vallejo” program better.  Rachel Tabachnick,  the author of the document, is a  nationally recognized  authority on the International Transformation movement. And, she has appeared on the PBS radio show Fresh Air. See attached transcript.  I am very fortunate to have corresponded with her in the past regarding the Vallejo Faith Movement. And, I will be corresponding with her if I need any clarification of history of the International Dominionism movement.

4) I handed out to the club member a summary of the planning session held by the Solano County Democratic Central committee and talked to the club on how we could meet some of the goals of the plan. See point 5.

5) Lastly, I handed out copies of the prospectus for the political version of the online software Nation Builder and recommended that the United Democrats club buy a subscription to coordinate our campaign for upcoming election.  I expressed my sincere hope that we could use the service to bring in a few thousand new voters to the next election.  I’m very fortunate, along with two of our club members, to have worked for a year on President Obama’s campaign as a data captain and I feel confident that we can apply the processes we learned to the upcoming local election.

On a personal note, I should disclose, that I have had a lifelong interest Religion and I’m currently an administrator and member of the Street Prophets group blog on Daily Kos. In my regular weekly Monday open thread column that I write for Daily Kos I cover the intersection of Religion and Politics. (And sometimes nothing at all)  It is through this progressive political forum that I have become familiar with the work of Rachel Tabachnik and Frederick Clarkson.

Also, at the June meeting the Faith Candidate did not have enough time to explain the connection between Ed Silvoso and C. Peter Wagner as well as I know he would have liked to. So, I would like to clear up this oversight by pointing out the following facts:

Ed Silvoso is an Apostle and Prophet in the New Apostolic Reformation.  Other NAR apostles include Cindy Jacobs, Jay Swallow, Lou Engle, and C. Peter Wagner.  C. Peter Wagner  is the founder of this movement.   Cindy Jacobs has visited Vallejo and spoke here along with Ed Silvoso.  The Dominionism movement and Harvest Evangelism has spent millions of dollars developing their training materials and has refined their programs through hundreds of similar “programs” around the world.  A quote from C. Peter Wagner book, Apostles and Prophets:

"It was only a very short time afterward that Ed Silvoso of Harvest Evangelism in Argentina had a meeting with me and we agreed to launch annual Harvest Evangelism International Institute in Argentina.  Silvoso and I also agreed to run a large-scale experiment in strategic-level spiritual warfare in the city of Resistencia (in northern Argentina).  This set in place one of my major courses for the decade of the 1990s, putting me in the front lines of field-based, evangelism-oriented prayer and spiritual warfare for many years."  - (Kindle version, location 1003-6)

C. Peter Wagner, Ed Silvoso, and Cindy Jacobs have written extensively. They have created a library of how to documents for the transformation movement. For example:

Possessing the Gates of the Enemy: A Training Manual for Militant Intercession, by Cindy Jacobs (1994)
Transformation: Change the Marketplace and You Change the World by Ed Silvoso (2007)
Apostles and Prophets, by C. Peter Wagner
Deliver Us From Evil, by Cindy Jacobs (2001)
Warfare Prayer, by C. Peter Wagner (1992)
The Church in the Workplace: How God’s People Can Transform Society, by C. Peter Wagner (2006)
Dominion! How Kingdom Action Can Change the World, by C. Peter Wagner (2008)

In addition there is a large collection of DVDs and training tapes that Harvest sells to individuals about the transformation movement.


Jonathan Gordon
United Democrats of Southern Solano County

In all fairness to the individual that accused me of being a "heterosexual and insensitive to LBGT concerns"  it was early in the meeting and he did not know that I was handing out information from Talk to Action. He mistook my trying to be impartial about the issues as my support for Dominionists.

As a guest at the meeting he did not know that I was openly gay and did not understand why all those in attendance were laughing at his statement. And I sorry to say myself, I started to laugh my self.  His real concern was the association of the Transformation Movement's with the "Kill the Gays" bill in Uganda.  A very valid concern.  But, lost in the moment.

This religious business is so complex I have to break it up into small chunks to get my message across to the Vallejo voters.  Trust me we will make this a issue.




What would you do in my position:

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