Sunday, November 18, 2012

The War on ALEC - Victories & the Challenges Ahead

A couple of things come together for today’s entry.  These are things that I have been thinking about for over two weeks now.

Earlier this summer one right wing nut job wrote something to the affect that every five years or so the left wakes up and realizes that “OMG – ALEC exists!” and that the left steps forward with cries of terror and then forgets about ALEC for another five years.

This writer was partially correct – except for the fact that it isn’t about every five years – unfortunately, it’s about every ten years that the left wakes up from their slumber and realizes the destruction to our democracy that is being caused by The American Legislative Exchange Council, their legislators and their corporate profit sector members.

The rallying cry happening right now among the left  is that we can not afford to go asleep and let the elections and right wing takeover of 2010 happen again in 2014.

As we all know, after the 2008 election complacency based on victory happened, and in 2010 people didn’t show up to vote and we ended up with right wing nut jobs in our state and federal offices (many of them becoming new ALEC members).

This complacency left our President in a situation where he could not achieve some of the goals that he had campaigned on in 2008 – because the voters in 2010 gave him a Congress that was not willing to work with him.

Complacency is not an option for us.

There are many hours I spend researching stuff that never makes it to the pages of this blog because the topic requires too many more hours of research for too little return.  This past election was one of those occasions.

I did a review of the election results in regards to ALEC members and stopped after writing about three states and researching another seven.  The results were – to say the least – dismal.

In 2012, ALEC lost maybe one legislator per state due to the voters saying NO!  In 2012 ALEC lost more legislators in each state – because they chose to not run for re-election.  In the states that I researched – many ALEC members were unopposed and were automatically put back in office.  The ALEC results could be viewed as disappointing.

But, we have had major victories:
We should not be disheartened.

It is important to remember that Exposing ALEC is a process that will take more than six or eighteen months to complete.

It is also important to remember we have had huge – huge - victories during the past eighteen months.

ExposingALEC at CMD has done truly amazing, award winning work in regards to ALEC.  Their dedication to educating the public on what ALEC is and how ALEC affects our democracy has been an absolute godsend for the American public.  ALECExposed and CMD and their staff are amazing.  We need to continue to financially support them, if we want this coverage to continue.  (Keep feeding to their tweet roll - entries are slowing down - we don't want it to become irrelevant.)

The Voter Legislative Transparency Project established a webpage dedicated to educating Americans about all things ALEC, through cutting edge reporting. We need to continue to financially support them, if we want this coverage to continue.

Common Cause published almost two full years of minutes from ALEC task forces, exposing both legislative and corporate ALEC members. We need to continue to financially support them, if we want this coverage to continue.

Fourteen states have completed detailed reports on the destructive influence of ALEC in their state.

Bill Moyers produced a ½ hour ‘expose on ALEC exposing the entire United States (those who watch PBS) to ALEC.  AND they established a webpage to keep the dialogue on ALEC going.

Common Cause, Clergy VOICE,, and The Voter Legislative Transparency Project have all filed IRS whistleblower claims with the IRS challenging ALEC’s supposed non-profit 501c3 status.

Progressive organizations across the US have come together requesting that Democratic legislators leave ALEC.  And seventy (70), mostly Democratic politicians have left ALEC, or so they say they have.

ALECExposed has the most current list of known corporateALEC members, giving us options in our buying decisions.

Petitions, fueled by the heinous likes of  the Voter ID issue and the Kill at Will issue – both of them championed by ALEC, have cause 45 companies to stop their funding of ALEC, so they say.  This would not have happened without the on-going work of everyone.

The largest list of current members of ALEC ever published is available on ALEC Exposed. (I use the word members [they don’t] – ‘cause almost all of them are on ALEC task forces.)  The most comprehensive list of people associated with ALEC - past and present – is available on Daily Kos.

There have been demonstrations, news conferences and educational programs at every ALEC meeting in the past eighteen months – which was unheard of before April 2011.  ALEC members may dismiss them because of the number of protestors – but they cannot dismiss the exposure and bad publicity that ALEC has to endure because of our actions..

It has been a good year for the war on ALEC.
It is the work of all of us that has brought ALEC into the mainstream media (MSM) and into the general discussion of politics.  Before April 2011 - the MSM never mentioned ALEC.  Before ALECExposed ALEC was not a political discussion point.

It is every tweet, every blog entry, every article, every protest demonstration that keeps the ALEC story alive.

But in order to keep the momentum going, we need to keep the energy level up.
WE can’t stop at this point.

ALEC Education
Going forward one of the things that is imperative is education of others about ALEC.

Those of you who are reading this know about ALEC, but it is evident from the election results of 2012 that most people still do not know about ALEC.
WE still have major work to do!

YOU are the base, the energy that determines whether ALEC continues to survive as a right wing extremist secretive organization - a shadow government in the US.

Your actions to educate others are key.
(I am not just a keyboard militia – I am doing something continually outside this blog to shine the light in the deep dark corners where the ALEC Kockroaches hide.)

Schedule an Exposing ALEC party.
The easiest thing you can do is have an Exposing ALEC party.
Your union hall
Your place of worship
Your dorm
Your house
Your VFW or American Legion meeting
Your political party monthly meeting
At Drinking Liberally meetings
There are still too many people out there that don’t know about ALEC!

You have the knowledge to guide the discussion.
Bill Moyers and Common Cause are willing to supply you with the materials for FREE.
  >>>>>FREE materials and 2 hours of your time<<<<<

How much is a true democracy - representation of, by and for THE PEOPLE worth to you in your time?
Think of all the hours and dollars ALEC is spending on educating legislators to be ALEC corporate shills.

Get the materials and info
If we don’t step up and use this resource – like so many things, it will be go away.

Schedule an Exposing ALEC party.

ALEC Continues To Exist – So We Must Continue to Exist
Keep the momentum of Exposing ALEC moving so that the next four years and more can make a profound difference in the political and economic landscape of the United States.

ALEC has not changed their focus.
ALEC is still out there and their horrendous, nasty, vile "model legislation" will again be introduced at the city, county, state, and federal levels.

ALEC, through ALEC legislators/legislation still want to
Get rid of regulations on their corporate profit sector members
Get rid of unions for their corporate profit sector members
Get rid of public education for their corporate profit sector members
Privatize governmental services for their corporate profit sector members
Sell the public commons to their corporate profit sector members
Destroy the rights of citizens for redress and due process for their corporate profit sector members

I am absolutely convinced that ALEC legislators will be continuing their work to repress voters' rights, women's rights, workers' rights, consumers rights and decimate public education

It is up to us to
Get rid of ALEC’s influence on our political process

ALEC will continue their bogus push for their free-market philosophy (the “free market” cannot truly exist because of ALEC’s interference in the market through legislation).

ALEC legislative members will continue to lie about the purpose and structure of ALEC meetings.

ALEC members will continue to hide their membership and their true purpose.

ALEC has not stopped their process.  ALEC will be training/indoctrinating newly elected legislators in Washington DC November 28 – 30, so their attack on our representative democracy can continue.

It is up to us to
Get rid of ALEC’s influence on our political process.

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