Please note I have a new phone number...


Alan Maki

Alan Maki
Doing research at the LBJ Library in Austin, Texas

It's time to claim our Peace Dividend

It's time to claim our Peace Dividend

We need to beat swords into plowshares.

We need to beat swords into plowshares.

A program for real change...

What we need is a "21st Century Full Employment Act for Peace and Prosperity" which would make it a mandatory requirement that the president and Congress attain and maintain full employment.

"Voting is easy and marginally useful, but it is a poor substitute for democracy, which requires direct action by concerned citizens"

- Ben Franklin

Let's talk...

Let's talk...

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Duluth Forum next Saturday... January 11

A quick reminder that the Forum on "Building Progressive Political Power . . . " will be next Saturday,
January 11, 2014 at the Copper Top Church in Duluth, Minnesota.

Focus:  The basic question — the basic challenge — for us is to determine
             if we, from various persuasions on the progressive Left, can come together
             to organize around "issues" rather than "ideology" or "party" — as a way of building
             political power, influence, and credibility in the minds of the broader public.

Issues:  For starters, we're proposing to explore organizing around the following issues:
             1) a livable ("minimum") wage; 2) single payer health care; and 3) the indigenous
             and environmental communities' concerns about environmental protection, including
             sulfide mining, species extinction, and climate change.

Goals:     To collectively figure out . . .

             1.  how we, as progressives, can increase  our political power and influence
                 in Minnesota — by working within and/or outside the DFL.    All creative options
                 must be on the table.

             2.  how we can use "kitchen table," "lunch bucket," and "environmental sanity" issues
                  to recruit, organize, lobby, and achieve the legislation and policy decisions we need
                  for meeting the needs of Minnesotans and its environment.

             3.  how we can maintain momentum for pushing forth — for the long term.
Basics:  Saturday, January 11th, 11:00 a.m. to 4:00-ish.
             Please arrive early (10:30 - 10:50).  We hope to start on time.

             It'll be long day; jam-packed with short presentations.
             Coffee/tea/water and snacks will be available.
             Bring a bag lunch if you like.  The setting will be informal.
             Whole group deliberations also. 
             See latest revised schedule below.

Rules:    The agenda provides for the presentation of a wide array of ideas and opinion.

              Speakers are asked to respect their time limits (15 minutes).  Audience members need to
              be brief in their comments (2-3 minutes) so that we can accommodate the input of as many
              participants as possible..

              Presentations and discussion promise to be passionate and provocative. 
              Critical analysis and critique of ideas, policies, and programs are welcomed.
              Personal put-downs, insinuations, or innuendoes will be declared out of bounds.
              All discussion needs to be civil.

              Rev. Cathy Schuyler and Vern Simula will serve as co-facilitators. 

              Collectively, let's make this an enjoyable, profitable, and memorable day!

This is still a tentative agenda, open to some slight modifications to accommodate last minute scheduling changes.

11:00      Welcome/Opening/Overview   
11:15      Overview
11:30      Livable (minimum) Wage
12::00     Whole Forum Discussion

12:30      ====  BREAK  - 15 minutes    =====

12:45     Universal Single Payer Health Care for Minnesota       
1:15      Indigenous and Environmental Issues

2:45     ===== BREAK ================

3:00      How Do We Organize in Minnesota??            
4:30+    Closing