Saturday, May 7, 2011

ALEC - There are no secrets. Ha! Ha!

I’ve been checking out the news every week to see what is written about ALEC.  It’s kind of sad to read the frustrations that are printed because people see legislation being passed and can’t understand why.

In most cases, the article notes that the legislation is “modeled after” ALEC legislation because the reporter is just too lazy to do any more work.  In most cases – it is ALEC “Model Legislature” – and it is also lack of in-depth reporting.

Below are some quotes taken from an article written about the Cincy protest.  I’m not linking the content – ‘cause I have little or no respect for the journalistic capabilities of the person who wrote this fluff piece.  The reason I am printing the excerpts here – is because the only thing the reporter did that was useful, was get some feedback on ALEC by ALEC members – that is handy for this entry.

But Seitz laughed at the notion of ALEC’s secrecy. He says it’s like any other professional association: They meet, have conventions and discuss ways to further their agenda.

Even though the ALEC membership rolls are kept private, the identity of sponsors isn’t a secret, Seitz adds.

He describes ALEC as a resource that allows him to consider how legislation is being crafted and challenged across the nation.

Although CityBeat was blocked from entering the ALEC event, this writer met with several members of the South Dakota State Senate outside the building. Peters was irritated by suggestions of secrecy and said the protest had no effect on her.

“(ALEC) is extremely educational,” [South Dakota State Sen. Deb] Peters says. “ALEC staffers are our staff. It’s nothing about ALEC telling us what to do … It’s public- and private-sector involvement. There are no secrets. You can just talk to a member and get the draft legislation.”

Now – aside from
the “legislation being crafted” and
the ability to “get the draft legislation”,
to "further their agenda" and
the “ALEC staffers are our staff.” (WTF?)  - 
the denial of the secrecy issue is puzzling to me.

Both Seitz and Peters stress – “There are no secrets” and  Seitz LAUGHED at the notion of secrecy – ha – ha!

Ha- ha!  Then show us the membership list - you folks are screwing with our government - we have a right to know who belongs to this organzation!

I took a little trip to the Virginia Legislative Member Directory to see what was listed in the bios of confirmed ALEC members.  I wanted to see just how proud they are of their membership with ALEC.

Acknowledges ALEC in bio
Does not acknowledge ALEC on his Congress bio
Does not acknowledge ALEC
John A.
Cosgrove, Jr.
Does not acknowledge ALEC
Acknowledges ALEC in bio
Does acknowledge – former national chair
Does not acknowledge ALEC
Does not acknowledge ALEC
Does not acknowledge ALEC
Does not acknowledge ALEC
Does not acknowledge ALEC
Does not acknowledge ALEC
Does not acknowledge ALEC
Does not acknowledge ALEC

BTW: Sen. Deb Peters does not acknowledge her ALEC membership anywhere either.

Hey – what’s going on Virginia Legislators? 
ü      You acknowledge your church – which has nothing to do with your job. 
ü      You mention Ducks Unlimited – which has nothing to do with your legislative job.. 
ü      You mention  the VFW – which has nothing to do with your legislative job. 
ü      You mention  the rotary – which has nothing to do with your legislative job. 
ü      You mention  the chamber – which has nothing to do with your legislative job.

You don’t mention ALEC?
ü      You don’t mention the organization that puts pre-written legislation in your grubby little hand just by visiting the ALEC “Members Only” webpage?
ü      You don’t mention the organization that reaffirms your commitment to free-market philosophy?
ü      You don’ mention the organization whose corporate sponsors wine and dine you at all the ALEC meetings and help you write legislation– legislation / government by the corporations and for the corporations?

Are you embarrassed to acknowledge your relationship with ALEC?

I would be –
but then, I wouldn’t be a member of an organization
that subverts democracy in the United States.

If you don’t know what ALEC is –
please read this, or  this, or  this, or this.


  1. I was at the protest in Cincinnati. I ended up talking to a couple of ALEC members during the latter part of our protest. They were very nonchalant in their approach to us, claiming that we really did not understand what they were about. I told them I was from Wisconsin, and that we viewed everything we know about their organization as an attack on our community. I pointed out that they could see this in the public outcry against the union-busting bill in Wisconsin, as ALEC may or may not have sponsored this bill. They told me the whole Wisconsin uprising was "astroturf" (funny how when there is a legitimate outcry against the whole purpose of your organization, you have to deny reality). They also told me that we needed to not be so emotional about the issues, that we really needed to just take the time to understand what they were all about. I told them that this might be a game of Monopoly to them, but for people in my community, it is about breaking homes and destroying our schools. It is serious. These 2 men, who claimed to be "moderate" members of ALEC convinced me more than ever that this group needs to be dragged out into the light for public viewing.

  2. That conversation must have been so frustrating for you.
    Thank you for sharing your story - it is a very important piece of the ALEC puzzle.