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Coffee Connect Newsletter • April 19, 2012

TAX DAY RALLY: Grover Got The Message, Next We Take It To Congress

by Will Rice, Coffee Party Commonwealth

I think Grover got the message.

There was no way of telling whether anti-government zealot Grover Norquist was actually in his downtown Washington office when 150 advocates of fair-share taxation paid him a noontime Tax Day visit yesterday (and two mountain-sized security guards stationed in the building lobby prevented us from finding out).

But the cheering, booing, singing (“Someday Grover Won’t Reign So”) and chanting undoubtedly found their way up to his office window. More importantly, they found a ready audience on the street below, as representatives of labor, advocates for the needy, and proponents of rational tax and budget policies gathered to say “No” to Grover’s infamous “pledge.”

The "pledge" is a promise he’s extracted from half our Congress to never raise taxes on anybody for any reason (war and natural disaster included). Taking Grover’s pledge is an irresponsible act that makes legislating impossible, because it forbids negotiation and compromise, and contradicts the members’ oath of office to serve our nation.  The multiple budget crises and ultimate downgrading of America’s credit rating last summer can all be laid at Grover’s door.

So that’s exactly where we laid our milk carton speaker’s stand yesterday, atop which I and three other speakers in turn wielded a bullhorn to address the crowded sidewalk and a phalanx of six TV camera crews, all in the dappled sunlight of a mild April afternoon.

When I spoke, I laid out some of the basic areas of tax unfairness:

  • Income generated by wealth taxed at half the rate of income earned through work
  • Very profitable corporations paying nothing in taxes
  • Basic family necessities taxed, while Wall Street gambling — the cause of the Great Recession— churns on tax-free.

Chuck Collins, a pioneer in identifying and combating wealth inequality, spoke about how our current, out-of-whack tax code perpetuates and extends the nation’s destabilizing wealth gap, making it harder for our economy to grow because there is not enough purchasing power in the poor and the middle class.


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Because we want you to know...

by Jeanene Kay Louden, Secretary

As Secretary of the Board of Directors of the Coffee Party, one of my jobs is to prepare minutes for all official board meetings. In the spirit of transparency and participation, this board has chosen to post its meeting minutes as a blog.

Okay, so meeting minutes aren’t exactly on the New York Times best seller’s list. Some nights I offer to do dishes to avoid writing them! But alas, they are the unabridged and official record of our actions as a board. What better way for you to know what we have done, for you to give us feedback, or for you to pass along your ideas?

I try to keep the blog as informative yet informal as possible. Over time we have come to realize we needed greater detail, so this tool, like so many we use, is organic in nature, morphing as we grow.

Have I convinced you to give my blog a try? You can see the minutes here. You can even “follow” the blog, and receive automatic email notification of postings. Then you will always know!

99% Spring Training Online

by Del Williams, Coffee Party USA Local Organizer

Did you participate in one of the close to 1,000 99% Spring Trainings that happened last week?  I hosted a training in Champaign, IL where I am also the Local Organizer for The Coffee Party of Greater Champaign Urbana.

It was a very productive and informative training and kudos to the many organizations, including Coffee Party USA, who sponsored and promoted these trainings to their constituents.  The trainings will ready more than 100,000 American's to prepare ourselves for non-violent direct action this spring.

If you weren't able to attend a local training, don't worry.  The 99% Spring training is now online.  It takes about an hour to complete and the training will ready you to join the thousands of others who have decided to stand up and start to tell the story of what happened to our economy.

Click here to begin your online training and get ready for the 99% Spring.

Coffee Party Radio Is On The Air

Many Americans feel they need One Percent Media products to feel connected to the outside world.  But how much can you really trust a box in your living room that talks at you and manipulates its content to serve an agenda that may or may not be out in the open?  Coffee Party Radio not only provides live original, content from the perspective of the 99%, it also offers you an opportunity to engage directly with the hosts, not only during each show, but also during the week leading up to it. 
Check out our schedule below for the days and time of our programming and call in and talk to the hosts!
Mondays 11 pm ET to 1 am ET
*Help Don line up content for the show by suggesting content here.
Thursdays 3 pm ET to 4 pm ET
*Help Jeanene line up content for her show by suggesting content here.
Saturdays 1 pm ET to 3 pm ET
*Help Egberto line up content for his show by suggesting content here.
Sundays 5 pm ET 5 to 6:30 pm ET
*Help Jessica find content for her by suggesting content here.
Coffee Party Radio is an exciting platform and one that we are proud to produce for our members and supporters.  Over the next few weeks we'll be integrating Coffee Party Radio with our other social media platforms, and adding at least three new shows.  If you'd like to join one of the Coffee Party Radio teams above, or start a new one, sign up here.

Help Us Grow The Coffee Party

by Billy Sears, Coffee Party Membership Director

Everything we do is powered by you.  From original content on our YouTube channel, to Coffee Party Radio, and our website, to our other social media platforms such as Coffee Party News, our volunteers are working together each day to connect and inform a network of over 500,000 people.  Unlike the One Percent Media content that has dominated our national conversation for the past three decades, our 99 Percent Media network gives voice to those who can't afford to purchase a "news" channel or a radio network.  We are truly people-powered and how much we accomplish depends on your support.

Here's how you can help:

Become an Official Coffee Party Member Financial support is important for any organization.  It literally "pays the bills."  Those bills include our web hosting costs, our online political action tools, as well as the salaries of our two staffers who manage the day-to-day operations of the Coffee Party.

If you are already a Coffee Party member and your membership has, or is close to, expiring, then please renew your membership.  You can also click here to make an additional contribution.  We would ask that you consider supporting the Coffee Party by pledging to give up a few cups of coffee a month and become a Coffee Party Sustaining Member at $15 a month.

Help us spread the word!  Online and social media connections are powerful tools and are the backbone of what Coffee Party USA was built on.  We've created an easy way for you to spread the word via email, Facebook and Twitter.  Click here and in a few easy steps you can update your entire social network on the happenings of The Coffee Party.

Another good way to help grow the movement is with Coffee Party merchandise.  Help spread the word with t-shirts, campaign buttons and bumper stickers all found in our Coffee Party Store.  All of these products are made in the USA from a family owned distributor. 

The Coffee Party is still a relatively young organization at a little over two years old.  We've had much success in those two years with your support.  But this is a long term effort.  The issues that we face as a nation didn't happen over night.  In some cases they were 30+ years in the making.  We can't fix this over night.  We need you.


Unite Against War on Women Rally

by Egberto Willies, Board Member

Politics Done Right with Egberto Willies

Saturday, 12-2 p.m. Central Time

It is not necessary for me to tell anyone what our legislature has done this session. There is something very interesting that one must note with the draconian cuts in our school budget, the invasion of women’s bodies, the cuts in medical care, and all the other cuts too numerous to document, they disproportionately affect women.

I just looked at my news feed and found a quote posted by Demitria McNeaulty, a woman that will make her voice heard by attending the rally.

clip_image001One should ask why is it that our Republican elected politicians throughout the nation have made it a cause celeb to pass policies that are not only removing controls from women but marginalizing them. The answer is not quite obvious. After a group is sufficiently oppressed for a long enough time chains are no longer necessary to exert full control. Women are the largest voting bloc in this country. Because women are generally the care givers and nurturers they more than anyone understand that the policies that are family oriented are diametrically opposed to what our now Right Wing Tea Party Republican party is offering due to their Darwinian nature.

The only thing an elected oppressor understands is the fear of the oppressed raising up and retaking control, we the people. It is your civic and patriotic duty if you are able to find your way to Austin on April 28th , 2012 at 4PM to be there and peacefully reclaim our legislature symbolically and in November reclaim it electorally. If you are in the Houston Area sign up for a bus here. If you are anywhere else in Texas please visit http://wowtex.org.



Scooping Coffee Party News

by Debilyn Molineaux, Executive Director

Have you every wanted ALL the news on a particular topic of interest?  Especially from trusted sources of information?  Or to discover new sources of information that go beyond mainstream media?  Welcome to Coffee Party News with multiple "channels" to meet your needs.  Our staff, board and volunteers are scoping out the latest news on many topics and "scooping" the news, just for you.   Check it out!

Organizing Your Community

All politics is local, but Coffee Party national can help you get started by introducing you to thousands of people who live near you and share our values for civil, fact-based, and solutions-oriented deliberation — coupled with action on the issues of Wall Street Reform, Campaign Finance Reform, and Tax Code Reform.  Write to local@coffeepartyusa.com if you are interested.

Click here for more information.

Chasing Glenn Beck

by Eric Byler

Michael Charney is a New Hampshire Republican who started an on-line social media experiment on Twitter to counter Glenn Beck about a year ago, had some encouraging success, and learned a lot about America along the way.  Michael explains in his book the diagnosis and the cure for what he calls "Electile Dysfunction."  Michael was a guest on Don Manning's "Speaking of America" and on Egberto Willies' show, Politics Done Right.

For the sake of argument, let's say that Glenn Beck maintains the same audience he had when he had the full support of One Percent Media and Fox "News." Let's say 2 million people. The United States population is 330 million. By posting on this page, you are a voice in an on-line network called the Coffee Party that is just a fraction of the the 328 million Americans who prefer not to consume hate-based propaganda products.

Beck and others in One Percent Media have created illusions and created narratives using their audience as characters. They've created political movements using their audience as activists. At times, these tactics have been successful. But not so much of late. Glenn Beck, Sean Hannity, Rush Limbaugh, and Michael Savage are still starring in very expense, wide-reaching, and hateful soap operas, but somehow they are failing to impact the national narrative the way they did in 2009 and 2010. [MORE]




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