I’m standing with Oregon Senator Jeff Merkley for another 4 years. We’re lucky to have him. Here are some pumpkins we made for him during the first election! Enjoy
A friend asked me what I’m doing this year vis-a-vis politics beyond voting for Obama & Co. I partly decided to stay home from Burning Man this year because I think the upcoming election is terribly important and I want to make sure that voters get registered and informed. I’m hearing a lot of talk about people being confused about who to vote for, whether to vote, whether it matters, things like that. I believe that each election is important and the one you’re participating in this year is as important as they come. Here’s a bit of what I’ve been up to. Thanks, Kaya Singer, for asking!
What I’m doing: talking to lots of people, posting relevant things on FB, talking to more people. being public about my wish to see the Democrats win this thing. Working on policy, trying to stay informed by reading Daily Kos and Talking Points Memo daily, donating to candidates in tough races, putting my thinking out there, trying to stay focused on what I want to see happen, rather than in just reaction mode. possibly hosting candidate house parties, maybe having a voting party encouraging everyone I know to make sure they’re registered, monitoring and promoting Voting Virgins – taking care of my health. cause this is probably going to go on for a while…
After watching the R primary and parts of the convention, and reading their platform, I’m convinced that they need to radically change course – what they’re proposing right now regarding womens’ reproductive health; immigration; GLBT rights – all is very very scary stuff. And, that is why I believe they’re going to lose big in November. And, their losing (possibly the House) could be helpful to the world in many ways – so, that’s what I’m working towards. A big Democrat win in November. Join me!
I have an idea for an article for BlueOregon that I might write. It goes something like this. What if we (Portlanders/Oregonians) lived with a newspaper that had a more even keel to it, instead of reaching off into far right positions as the Oregonian often does. Instead, what if our paper had more of a positive, progressive take on things. Instead of seeing a forest and thinking board feet – once in a while the paper might give environmental/tourism/other species a chance. Instead of mirroring the views of business alliances and conservative religious views we might experience something less op-ed intensive, and more straight news. I wonder how our lives might be different. My guess is that there would be more readership, and perhaps more people would take leadership in the community as they’d have less fear of sticking their necks out and become part of an attack in the editorial pages of the local paper. I think it would probably also lead to more reasoned debate on the issues of the day. Thoughts?
…Jonathan: not sure I want to start a new paper. Just wondering “what if”. What if I lived in a town where the paper reflected the zeitgeist of the people who lived there. And it does happen. Eugene has a paper that is very “Eugene”. It’s actually incredible to read. Especially the letters section. Instead of keeping everyone in a constant state of suspense and printing and lot of bullshit, the paper seems to encourage creativity and action.
(Sarah mentioned the great small papers we have here ) I want the main paper to be that good, too. I could be. I was in Las Vegas recently. Their paper is even-keeled, and pleasant and interesting and topical and seems more useful than keeping everyone fighting all the time. There didn’t seem to be a vendetta like the O has with the Mayor, with environmentalists, with Occupy Portland, with some of the City Council members. the paper is a bully. The paper also supported Bush and Gordon Smith which were so unreflective of the people who live here that they just stood out as stupid, and awful. They continue to be that on a daily basis, thus making our City less friendly, less cooperative and more libertarian and crass.
I think we can have better and deserve better. It’s not going to just happen magically. It may be one more area we have to fight for in our lives.
Albert Kaufman, Jim Lockhart and Richard Carpenter on today’s issues – Portland Cable Access TV – Fall, 2011
I took part in a show with Jim Lockhart and Richard Carpenter recently to discuss population growth and other environmental issues. I got to be the star and so thought I’d put this out into cyberspace for my own record of my current thinking and hopefully to entertain and enlighten others. Let me know what you think.