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Coffee Connect: The Coffee Party Newsletter • vol 3. #8

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Walker Recall Is Our Refusal to Let Go of the Wisconsin Way of Life

by Craig Dunigan, Coffee Party Board of Directors

This January we turned in a petition with nearly one million signatures, asking to exercise our constitutional right to recall an elected official.  On Tuesday, Wisconsin will go to the polls and choose whether or not to replace its governor.  Many will see this election as the culmination of what has become known as the Wisconsin Movement.  However, I think this is bigger than Wisconsin, and bigger than just this election.  Much bigger.

To research just how this is bigger, I began reading the recent history of non-violent protests and revolutions, but when I reached as far back as the formation of the Solidarity union in Poland in 1980, I realized something.  It's true that we could probably trace this movement back there, but linking back to that famous labor union made me stop and think a bit.  So many in the media controlled by the 1% have tried to characterize the Wisconsin Movement as purely a union battle.  They couldn't be more wrong, and I want to show you why. [MORE]


Be the Media

by Eric Byler

In 3 minutes, our latest video starring Jonny 5 of the Flobots invites you to amplify your voice, connect with people across the U.S., and help restore self-governance for the People.

How?  By doing what you already do — seeking truth and sharing it when you find it.  Only now, your voice can get an online boost from one of the largest "99 Percent Media" networks in the world — you know, the one you helped us build.  Please:

A.  WATCH and share THIS VIDEO

B.  CLICK HERE to sign up for our Social Media Team

C.  Sign up for our conference call Sunday, June 3 at 2:00 pm ET (11 am PT)

Our new Social Media initiative is a great way to spread the word about National Coffee Party Week June 4-10.  Get started now with 7 easy steps.  Let's take action and inspire a more informed and more involved citizenry.

 


"We All Die a Little"
Understanding America's Soldiers, and Remembering Those We've Lost

by Cheryl Hatch

My friend Jeanene asked me to speak on her radio program that she intended to be a conversation about Memorial Day.

After two months in Afghanistan, three weeks in a Kuwaiti hospital and traveling halfway around the globe, I exhaust easily. And I've noticed my emotions are raw. I was concerned I wouldn't make it through the conversation. I was afraid I wouldn't be articulate. I was afraid I'd cry. Frankly, at first, I didn't want to do it... and yet I didn't want to disappoint my friend.

It was an opportunity to share stories of the soldiers of the 1/25th Stryker Brigade Combat Team, particularly the soldiers of the 1-5. So I accepted.

It was a thoughtful and emotional conversation not a political one. At the start of the program, Jeanene said: "I think it's really important to distinguish the concept of war from our recognition of the warrior. Because while it's meaningful to debate the virtues or lack of virtues for any given war, it's not okay with me to debate the virtue of the those killed in action....  I don't ever confuse a political action, which is declaring war, with that very sacred action of giving up one's life."

At :36.40 in the hour-long program, I read the 21 names of the soldiers from the 1/25th who did not return from Afghanistan. [MORE]


Charting the Hostile Takeover of the American Democracy

by Eric Byler

Please take 15 minutes to listen to this report by Guy Raz of NPR's All Things Considered.  The richest 100 people in America are providing 80% of the money going to Republican Super-PAC's, and, this constitutes 80% of all the money being spent by these lawless electioneering entities.  This report implies but does not come out and say that the "Citizens United" decree was a direct response to the advent of social media and crowd-funding, which made it possible for We the People to have a larger say in, for instance, who is elected president. 

At least 105 people are very, very worried about this development.  One hundred of them are spending millions of dollars to counter it, and 5 of them undermined the Constitution and destroyed their legacies as Supreme Court justices in order to help them.  America's plutocracy is spending so heavily this year because they feel they need to entrench their power so deeply that our votes (and the will of the People) will never matter again. 

Please listen to this and share it with your friends.  [MORE]


 
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A Conversation over Coffee

by David Shelton

Discussing ways to find common ground between the LGBT Christian community and the Church. Wewill discuss issues based on fact, and find ways to properly minister to those in the LGBT community.

With President Obama’s recent announcement in support of marriage equality, many of these conversations will be held only with those who agree with one another. The time has come for those who might not agree with each other to have open dialogue on these issues that affect peoples’ lives directly.

I’m proud to announce A Conversation over Coffee as just such an discussion. The goal is to bring together pastors (on both sides of the issue), LGBT people, their families, friends, and anyone interested — and talk. Really talk.

We can’t sidestep these conversations anymore. By having this discussion on neutral ground (not in a church), no one is expected to embrace one creed or another. This is about people. It’s about reconciliation. It’s about bringing us together without shying away from one of the most important issues of our day.

The public is invited.

Please RSVP on our facebook page if you plan to attend. [MORE]


National Coffee Party Week: Accountability Through Awareness

Coordinated events begin Monday June 4 in cities and towns across the U.S.

by Frank Maurizio

Coffee Party USA is planning events at local coffee houses and other venues across the U.S. during the week of June 4 thru June 10.  Coffee Party USA is a member-based, grassroots organization that began on Facebook.

“National Coffee Party Week” is designed as a forum for on-line organizers to meet in person to chart out local actions that will help ensure that the issues of the 99 Percent (We the People) are not lost in the shuffle as the 2012 election approaches.  Local organizers will get a boost from the Coffee Party’s extensive social media network, including an email database that can invite hundreds of people to each event.  (Events can also be created by clicking here, and existing events can be found by clicking here.)

Shelly Bernal is planning her event on June 7 at Empire Pizza Café in Ft. Lauderdale, FL.  In addition to being a local organizer, she has the distinction of being the first Coffee Party volunteer to crack 1000 views in a single day on the new social media initiative called “Coffee Party News." 

Bernal said her biggest concern about America’s political landscape is a lack of accountability.  “Our government fails to hold the economically powerful accountable to the law,” she said.  “I’m participating in National Coffee Party Week because I believe the path to accountability begins with public awareness. I’m doing my part by starting in my community." [MORE]

 



How Wall Street Cheats America at the Pump, and How to Fight Back

by Jessica English

My recent guest on The Bottom Line, Tyson Slocum (click to see him on Colbert), is one of the nation's leading experts on Wall Street profiteering in the energy industry, and, how to stop it. 

Please listen to the archived show, I'm so proud of it as you can see in the video above, and there are actions you can take to lift the burden on our national economy that Wall Street profiteers cause by manipulating the price of oil, a commodity they do not actually use to do business.  This causes all the companies that do need oil, gas stations and airlines, to charge us more, and weigh down the economy.

WRITE TO CONGRESS to tell them to
enforce our laws and protect
the American consumer.

[MORE]


Three Reasons Why Conservatives Should Join the Coffee Party

Listen to Michael Charney's new radio show
The Middle Ground, co-hosted by Eric Byler

by Michael Charney

It’s odd that I find myself here; I’m not much of a joiner, and when I am part of some group I’ve been known, metaphorically at least, to run with scissors. So how, then, did I get involved with the Coffee Party?

I did some homework in order to get a sense of the organization and its purpose. It seemed we shared several beliefs: that money in politics is a mistake at best and seriously disenfranchising at worst; that political discourse has become little more than a playground shouting match; and that facts actually have value and should be much, much more than props deployed to support a set of specious beliefs.... [MORE]


Big Apple Coffee Party Keeping Heat on Koch Brothers

by Lynne Glasner, Big Apple Coffee Party

The shadowy influence of the Koch brothers was on display and duly exposed at a screening of Robert Greenwald’s full-length documentary The Koch Brothers Exposed, hosted recently by the Big Apple Coffee Party and All Soul’s Church in New York City, where the film was shown.

The film’s producer Jim Miller was on hand to explain the genesis of the film, which started as a series of short YouTube videos about the Koch brothers and the damage they were doing to America, and the American democracy. As he did more research, he and his partners at Brave New Films recognized that they had to make a full-length feature to tell the story properly.

Miller related to a packed audience that the Koch Brothers were not pleased with their efforts. Immediately after the release of the film, they found themselves under attack. The Kochs’ decried the film for exposing practices that are within the letter of the law. As Miller explained, the laws are part of the problem.

CLICK HERE to get a DVD

Susan Lerner, executive director of Common Cause New York, described how last year her organization staged a 1,000-person protest at an event hosted by the Koch brothers at a Southern California resort. Lerner said the event helped bring the secretive activities of the billionaire brothers to the attention of the mainstream media. Since then, there has been more coverage, enough to provoke an orchestrated response: “Prosperity is under attack by the current administration and many of our elected officials,” claimed Charles Koch.  Media outlets and politicians sympathetic to the Koch crusade have echoed this narrative dutifully. [MORE]

 

Letters

Recently one of the all-time best Coffee Party videos has been receiving some new attention thanks to the start-up 99 Percent Media outlet, UpWorthy.  We received the following letter in response:

Good day,

I recently watched and shared [16 Corporations or We The People].  Though the names of the 16 corporations are not the point of the video I have some conservative friends who cant get past not knowing which corporations the video is labeling.  Please let me know their names at your convenience.

Morgan, Newbury Park, CA

Our reply:

Morgan,

The US Chamber of Commerce has done some good things for America.  One thing that the Coffee Party doesn't care for, however, is that they keep those 16 corporations and all of their donors secret.  They go to great lengths to achieve this level of secrecy, even going so far as
to alter their political ads so that they get around the election laws we do try to enforce.  The reason that they do this is that their clients are very much interested in lobbying anonymously through the Chamber, so that their corporate brand does not suffer.  The Chamber is, in that sense, a money laundering outfit for secret lobbying that, for whatever reasons, corporations fear would hurt their brand if the public was aware.

You can read more about it here: http://chamber.350.org/ and here is the latest of the latest from our friends at Public Citizen.

Thanks,
Eric Byler, Coffee Party USA


 

 



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