While Minnesota Public Radio predicts caucus turnout to be light (perhaps in a non-partisan or multi-partisan way?) as the numerous GOP challengers to Senator Al Franken and Governor Mark Dayton will likely by-pass the caucus event that will be filled with Ron Paul libertarian activists and go straight to the primary, the DFL caucus is powerful enough to be attractive and worth your time. Why? Because of the need to renew our DFL commitments to our platform and action agenda, and the volunteer party structure that allows us to fend off the well financed attacks on our democratic, grassroots traditions by 1%ers and mass media.
I recently suggested that DFLers caucus to make porn production (more obviously) legal in Minnesota and I think there are good and valid reasons to consider modifications to fix 2257 reporting requirements at the federal level, which are at best useless red tape that doesn't fix the Traci Lords scenario it was designed to fix (she had a state issued ID, as did the only other underage performer I am aware of). Instead the 2257 law is more likely designed to have a chilling effect of freedom of expression among adults and is especially dangerous in the age of the "selfie" and adult dating sites/sexting behavior. It needs modification.
I also made some fun of the state and its recurring fantasy that it produces porn performers and centerfold model types, e.g. of Bunny Lebowski a.k.a Fawn Knutsen in the Coen Brothers "The Big Lebowski". The numbers don't bear that out.
In looking over the Ongoing Platform of the DFL I see some weakness in our platforms blurring of First and Fourth Amendment issues:
We Support:I see the following slightly promising, though lacking specific support for sexual expression in artistic forms (stage, film, literature) while enumerating some bodily reproductive rights:
Separation of church and state and the right to privacy.
We Oppose:In the Action Agenda, after the crackdown on Occupy before the last cycle, there was some increased support for free speech, free association and protest (though local ordinance may enable some brutal repression of protest?):
Government interference in all matters related to the control of one’s own body, including protection of the rights of women to bear children, practice birth control and obtain safe and legal abortions
So how do these platform and action agenda statemments arise? Your resolutions on caucus night. The Action Agenda arises and dies again each cycle, so there is some scramble to renew various interest groups most favorite Action Agenda statements, though some have become Legislative Priorities as of the last State Central Commitee meeting (note that the Resolutions Committee/Commission/what-have-you failed to address any set federal legislative priorities - we need new blood badly on that body).
Support person’s 1st Amendment rights to peacefully assemble and protest, in accordance with local ordinances, and be free of brutality and repression from the government
The Ongoing Agenda remains more fixed between cycles but may be modified in each set of caucus to convention processes. The resolutions process is established in and best described by the Official Call but in practice party chairs, state legislators, and past Resolutions Chairs have acted arbitrarily to quash resolutions they disliked outside of any regular or legal process at least once in recent memory (a Israel-Palestine divestment resolution sponsored by members of through group MN Break the Bonds Campaign)
So we have a ways to go before we become tolerant of the free speech of others not like us in the MN DFL, but there is no time like the present caucus time to start expanding and defending the rights of others to be seen and heard. Even the free speech of camgirls (or cam-boys) as interesting or disappointing as that is to us individually.
Here is the link to the MN Secretary of State's Precinct Caucus finder, hope to see you there, or some sign you went... feel free to post your questions, hopes, and after you go, about your experience tonight in the comments!
Food for thought and inspiration for new resolutions:
The NSA’s mass collection of phone records has resulted in decreased calls to and from organizations represented by the Electronic Frontier Foundation on First Amendment free association grounds.
Larry Flynt interview on Bloomberg - adult video content for cable and satellite is the biggest revenue generator in his corporate empire, beats gaming. Flynt disses Snowden, dropping further down the list of people I almost admire (if only he had fought the Acacia streaming media patent trolls!)
Native Minnesotan and pornstar Siri (with husband Brad) give us an interview on how she got into the business, what being independent in the adult industry is like, with details on search, social media self-promotion, and using adult website affiliate programs to essentially earn a referral or recurring income from scenes she received a one-time payment to perform in: