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The San Diego Democracy for America Meetup Group Message Board › What should San Diego DFA really be about?

What should San Diego DFA really be about?

A former member
Post #: 5

I'm new to this area, having lived in Long Beach until recently and worked worked on the Dean campaign there and in L.A. Before that, I worked on John McCain's campaign in 2000. Yes, John Mc Cain, the Republican John McCain.

I was a Republican until the present administration disgusted me so much that I changed parties. Part of the reason for that disgust is their attempt to control information.

The values that I thought were years ago represented by the Republican party are now carried by the Democratic party, and that is why I am here. But, I am still open to good ideas that come from either party.

There seems to be a rush here to disavow anything but blind allegiance to what some have framed as the Democratic party line. What is wrong with bi-partisanship when it comes to ideas? If it always US against THEM, can we ever expect it to be anything but THEM against US?

I may be wrong, but the impression I get from the discussion regarding Mike vs. Charlie is that it is about control and the ambitions of some to influence the opinion of ALL through that control.

Control of WHO speaks about WHAT issues smacks of limiting freedom of speech. And limiting freedom of speech limits the education of us all. It seems to me that the purpose of these meetings should be to learn as much as we can about the issues. Or are we all experts? On everything?

It also seems to me that the real spirit of Democracy is served better by each of us arguing our cases and allowing each other to come to their own conclusions about issues rather than attempting to control access to information or "lean" on each other to support our own views, no matter how strongly convinced of them we are.

I voted for Arnold because I considered his predecessor Grey incompetent given the Enron debacle. I won't again because his actions don't bear out his campaign promises by a wide margin - particularly with regard to corporate influence. But that doesn't mean there isn't a single proposal of his that dosn't deserve attention.

There are two bills in Sacramento, one in the Senate and one in the Assembly regarding redistricting that contain language sponsored by Common Cause. To my knowledge that language adheres to the highest standards for redistricting.

It seems to me that, rather than being paranoid about who speaks for what organization with regard to redistricting, we should be inviting speakers both pro and con who have REAL knowledge of those bills and educate ourselves as to the REAL content and impact of those bills.

I would rather belong to an organization that is open to good ideas no matter what source they came from and considers all points of view rather than censoring some from the podium. I hope that San Diego DFA is that kind of organization. If not, I will look elsewhere for information and companionship of belief.

wink Don Hess
A former member
Post #: 1
Don, thank you for your comments. That is what I have been feeling. Most of us started when this was Dean for America and hung in there and worked to get Dean in office even when it looked like he wouldn't be the favored Democratic candidate. We wanted him anyway because of his ideas and what he had to say and the way he said it. I have been hoping that Democracy for America would carry the same attitude as that. Give us good information to work with, not just one side. And, if Joe Smoe from the bottom of the rung has good ideas and can present them well, get behind him and give him our support. I want change in American politics - period. I don't care who the man or woman is, as long as they have good ideas and are on track with people like us. (In other words, they aren't part of a big machine that's going to end up giving us the same'o same'o.) I get a little wringle in my brow when I hear "get those Repulicans out of there." I'm never going to be a straight across the board Republican or Democrat. I vote for the man/woman. I believe there are alot of people out there just like me. If we give them a good candidate, who will fight for the right things in government (state or Federal) they will vote for them. If there is one out there running for local office, let's get behind them and support them, whether they are on the Democratic ticket or not. If there isn't one out there we feel we can support, then we need to find one. If there is someone in office but they are supporting a bad idea, let's let them know how we feel. Don't just throw the baby out with the bath water. We want Democracy NOT politics.
smile Donna Liddle
A former member
Post #: 6
Thanks Donna,

Three thumbs up for your reply. I think in the heat of battle we could end up acting like the few Republicans in Congress, the Administration and in office elsewhere whose tactics we despise.

If we repress honest discussion and disallow the process of consensus, the rule then becomes, "It's O.K. if we're doing it, but not if they are."

What I liked about Howard Dean (of the many things including his honesty, charity and clarity) was his openness to discussing ALL the issues. Also his welcoming of ALL questions and sharing the credit for the origination of good ideas with his supporters.

"Grassroots", I believe, implies growth. Grass grows, and so do ideas, from the very bottom. My view is that this is the very purpose of organizations like ours - to originate and exchange points of view, weeding out the less attractive, and cultivating the ones that make sense to all of us.

With out an atmosphere of freedom to exchange, the best ideas can die from lack of nourishment. Without encouragement for opposing points of view, some of the best may never appear.

One of the things I dislike about the Bush administration is that you hear the same stilted phrases from all of them - Bush, then Rice, then Rumsfeld, then Cheney. Their speech is monlithic because they don't want an exchange - only repitition. They don't want competition, only submission. They have raised consistency from a level of a virtue to the level of a vice (literally and figuratively).

I left that party to escape that sort of thinking, and hope to find a better landscape on this side of the fence. I hope that effort will not have been in vain. One of the benefits I hope this little fracas "at the top" will do is encourage more of us to express our views and wishes in this column. I think that is what it is there for, not "gossip" as some have described it.

wink Don
Carol C.
Group Organizer
San Diego, CA
Post #: 1
Dear Don and Donna,

I agree with you, both. I am one of the meetup 23 agenda committee. I think most of the meetup members agree with your views. This is what has made our meetup so successful in the past.

Things are settling down. I guess we are having growing pains.

I talked couple of long term political friends. They said there is always some conflict arising in a group one time or another. They said it is practically true after a Big Loss! Emotions are high! Everybody is determined and anxious that the Democratic Party does it right this time! Many members, and, leaders thinks they have the answer. They think they need to control things in their own way, so we don't get off track!

I know Mike tried several times to work things out with Charlie. It wasn't over one incident. I care for Charlie very much and hate disagreements. No one wanted to cause any trouble. But, Mike and the rest of us taking over from, our wonderful
leader for 2 years, Valerie (who stepped down) felt that we had to speak out when we saw the new changes and censorship ideas.

I think Charlie just has too many responsiblities. He just is overwhelmed and worried that things were not staying on track and wanted focus.

Tomorrow, we in the meetup committtee, are going set up the agenda, and pick a temporary moderator, and work toward full participation of all our members.

In fact, the speaker I have asked?to come (on very short Notice) is from U.Nations S.D. Association & will be speaking on her experiences in Iraq.

Personally,I like good short speeches 5-15 minutes long with lots of time for Questions and Discussion for the members. I think, we will be dealing with our present Meetup 23 local conflict, and watching the DFA DVD sent from DFA Headquarters.

I would like to ask you both to come to our next meetup, if possible, Wed. April 6, 2005 at 7:00pm located at Giovanni's Restaurant, at the Corner of Ruffin Rd. And Clairemont Mesa Blvd.

Please come! Participate and help us figure this out. We have been a good,strong, friendly, fun bunch of people. Honest, Don and Donna.

I invite anyone else reading this to come, too.

Yes, Charlie Imes will be there, with his great big smile, and all his talents. From his replies on this site, he will be mostly listening and answering questions, this time.

Please don't hesitate to respond, critisize or tell me I am full of bullshit! Grinning.
Carol Changussad
A former member
Post #: 2
I just joined your group recently. I have been a member of DFA for over a year now meeting in
Temecula until now. I have been a DEMOCRAT since I could vote. The reason I am a DEMOCRAT
is because the DEMOCRATIC party supports:
1) The right for women to decide what to do with their own bodies (A FUNDAMENTAL HUMAN RIGHT)
2) The right for ones who do NOT own all the CAPITAL ($) to have an OPPORTUNITY TO LIVE ABOVE
3) The right for ones who were born impoverished to have SOME chance (NOT EVEN A FAIR chance)
4) To NOT allow CORPORATIONS to run our country
5) To have a balance between UNIONS and CORPORATIONS


In my opinion, anyone who says that a person who is a member of the Republican Party
might have "good ideas" is off in FAIRY LAND... ANYONE who is a Republican SUPPORTS
the agenda of the Bush Administration. Anyone who supports the Bush Administration does
NOT give a diddly ---- about our country OR the fundamental issues that I listed above...
Schwareznegger at the RNC was a CHEERLEADER for the Bush Campaign... I THOUGHT HE
WAS APPALLING... He LIED, & LIED, & LIED... It is no joking matter what the Republicans
are doing to this country right now. If (& WHEN at the RATE we are going at) THEY (THE
REPUBLICANS) get THEIR JUDGES into the JUDIARY around the country and at all levels
we are going to be SCREWED... The FUNDAMENTALS of AMERICAN DEMOCRACY are going
to be TRASHED... Anyone who is a Republican & does NOT either QUIT the Republican Party
or does NOT SPEAK out VERY FORCIBLY against the policies of the Republican Party in my
view is PART & PARCEL to this Republican agenda.

I joined DFA because HOWARD DEAN made NO BONES about what HE STOOD FOR. What
he stands for is what the REPUBLICANS are trying to DISMANTLE...


In the meeting, Mike just made it clear that Arnold's re-districting plan had NOT BEEN EXPLAINED...
...and considering that he is a REPUBLICAN who campaigned for BUSH... IT WOULD BE HIGHLY
LIKELY that his re-districting plan would PROBABLY benefit REPUBLICANS...

How can ANYONE say that we are being stifled... Just because we do NOT agree does NOT
mean anyone is being stifled to speak their mind...

I WOULD NOT be part of this group unless (AS HOWARD DEAN SAID VERY CLEARLY...)
A former member
Post #: 9

I read your message, and I understand your points about why you are a Democrat. I could add many more for my being a registered Democrat - which I became - after being a Republican all my life - in order to work for Howard Dean and to vote for him in the primary.

I couldn't help but think that your comments were aimed at me
because I was the one who proposed that redistricting might be a good idea. But it is because of what is contained in the
article by David Broder that I think that.

The present system has become a rigid system where incumbents
win again and again - both Democrats and Republicans. This
system, where they think they will not be challenged - UNLESS
they do NOT pander to corporate interests - makes them more
vulnerable to the corporate interests. Again, this applies both
to DEMOCRATS and Republicans.

I am as disgusted with this Republican administration as you
are. I think Bush is the most stupid man to ever occupy the
White House, and I think his strings are being pulled by Cheney
and Rumsfeld and Rove and Rice. I also think he is nothing more
than a conduit through which big corporations do big deals.

I am against him and others in the Republican Party like Tom
Delay, Mitch McConnell, Trent Lott, Rick Santorum and Bill Frist who would take away our rights to privacy through the Patriot Act, underfund our schools, wreck our social security system, our medicare system, ruin our environment and ruin our
economy by spending on a useless war that creates a deficit
that will not be paid off for a decade or two.

So, if you were aiming at me, you were aiming at the wrong
person. I am WITH you. But, I do think that both sides of an
argument should have a chance in any organization. And I, for
one, was not aiming my comments at MIKE. I was aiming them at
CHARLIE for shutting Mike down. Mike was trying to allow Jim
Wade to present HIS side of the argument.

I think that perhaps you should go back and re-read all of the
comments in response to Mike's announcement. I don't believe a
ONE of them said anything derogatory about Mike - not ONE -
they were all aimed at Charlie for trying to take over the DFA Meetup and make it a part of the
organization he is founding called San Diego for Democracy.

I hope this letter makes you feel somewhat better about why I
made the comments I did. I just believe in fairness to all. I,
for one, do not want to be limited to listening to one side of
an argument. I want to hear ALL views on it, and then make up
my own mind. I think that you probably do, too. It is the
Republicans in the White House who do NOT. I don't THINK we
wish to be like THEM - as I said in my second comment.

wink Don Hess
Carol C.
Group Organizer
San Diego, CA
Post #: 4
To all DFA MeetUp members #23 San Diego-New Speakers for Wed. 4/6 Meetup.

Anne Hoiberg from the UNA SD, will be speaking about her experiences in Iraq
on May 4, 2005 DFA Meetup. Anne could not make for our April 6th Meetup.

Francine Busby-Our hard working, talented Democrat that will Beat Duke Cummingham in 2006 will be our Second Speaker at our next meetup April 6, 2005. Francine raises my spirit each time she gives a speak!

Our First Speaker is Wade Sanders! Some of you might know him. For this of you who don't here, is a short bio:

Wade Sanders is a former Deputy Assistant Secratary of the Navy under the Clinton Administration. An award winning Journalist. He provides Television and print commentary on National Security matters for the National Press and International Press.

Wade Sander's attended Harvard's Kennedy School of Government and Practices Law in San Diego. He served Two Combat Tours in Vietnam, including one in the Rivers of the Mekong Delta with John Kerry, Where With the SUPPORT of Their Men, They were Both Awarded the Silver Star, the Bronze Star and the Purple Heart. He has been a close friend of John Kerry's for nearly 40 years. He has been active in each of his political Campaign.

He was Director of California Veterans for Kerry~A founder of the Veterans Brigade ~ and A member of Kerry's Band of Brothers. Yes, at the DNC Boston Convention, Kerry had his Band of Brothers walk out on stage, Wade Sanders was one of those men.

Wade Sanders will be sharing his experiences as he traveled thoughtout the Undited States for nearly a year speaking to groups large and small, and doing media for the campaign. He will share His Insights regarding the campaign, and a Look to the Future.

We are lucky to have him as our guest. All visitors are welcome. Come early to get a good sit! Enjoy our speakers and DFA National HQ Updates and Suggestions for all our members!

Hope to see you all on Wednesday!

Till Then,
Carol Changus
Speaker Coordinator For DFA Meetup #23
Member of Meetup # 23 Steering Committee
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