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East Bay "Democracy for America" Meetup Message Board › You've Got the Power- Ways to Use it in 2010

You've Got the Power- Ways to Use it in 2010

Vincent C.
Group Organizer
Berkeley, CA

You have the Power: Political Action for February 2010

I was at a political meeting last week when I heard something that really resonated with me. “When we sit around and think there’s nothing we can do, we feel dispirited. When we go out and do something positive, no matter how small, it energizes us”. Make sense? You bet, and we have to keep our advantage. Simply trusting in the system won't keep democracy in the lead. We saw that with the most recent Supreme Court ruling.

Come to the February East Bay Democracy for America Meetup and get energized. The RSVP information is listed below.

February 10 – 2nd Wednesday
Rockridge Public Library
5366 College Ave.

6:30 pm Socializing & Pizza
7:00 pm Meetup begins


Come to our February Meetup. We’ll be focusing on ways of identifying people within space.

Does this sound dry? It isn't.

If you use a computer, a cell phone, voting machines and any other technology then you are under the intelligent eye of data collection software. Information technology has transformed how we use information to make new choices. Understanding how to persuade a consumer to buy a product has made the advertising industry masters of our universe. To our dismay!

EAST BAY DFA believes you, as leaders of change, need to use information wisely and effectively to keep democracy thriving.

What you will learn:

Geographic Information Software (GIS) is already apart of our daily habits.

A Geographic Information System (GIS), or Geographical Information System, is any system that captures, stores, analyzes, manages, and presents data that are linked to location. Technically, a GIS is a system that includes mapping software and its application to remote sensing, land surveying, aerial photography, mathematics, photogrammetry, geography, and tools that can be implemented with GIS software.

In a more generic sense, GIS applications are tools that allow users to create interactive queries (user-created searches), analyze spatial information, edit data, maps, and present the results of all these operations.

Can we use GIS research to improve the intelligence of our campaigns? We can and must.

Chris Urkofsky who works with GIS in his day job and has recently worked with GIS on candidate's campaign in CA believes that this is an under used technology, ripe for application.

PART II of our meetup is a conversation with Maplight, an organization that gave us a fabulous presentation last year.­ is a nonpartisan, 501(c)(3) nonprofit research organization that illuminates the connection between campaign contributions and legislative votes in unprecedented ways.

DeAnna Dalton from MAPLight will present some examples of the way MAPLight information has be used to create hard hitting journalism. DeAnna was inspired to work in the government transparency movement after her early dreams of public service were derailed by the recognition of the limits campaign fundraising places on elected officials’ freedom of conscience. The site is a tool that enables advocacy groups, citizen leaders, journalists, and bloggers to document perceived corruption and special access.

Tools for the shifting landscape will better prepare us for 2010 and 2012.

We look at this at this Meetup as giving us some specific ideas about how data can be tapped for specific causes / candidates. When you volunteer this year on a campaign you’ll be able to suggest ways to use research more effectively.

Again for details and RSVP!

February Meetup:

February 10 – 2nd Wednesday
Rockridge Public Library
5366 College Ave.

6:30 pm Socializing & Pizza
7:00 pm Meetup begins


Even today you can use your power!

Move your Money!

* You can choose to move your money from big institutions to a community bank in your neighborhood.

* You can choose to support a bank that lends based on the borrowers ability to repay the loan and not on amassing loans with the sole purpose of collecting their fees and then passing the downside of the debt off to someone else.

* You can choose to support a bank where the upper management’s compensation package is based on the long term health of the bank and not on its quarterly bottom line.

The people at know there is a larger context to consider too.

What happens when the location of political candidates' own money starts to matter? As early as this fall's primaries, you should expect to hear people ask politicians in debates and through various kinds of interactions: (1) where do you, personally, keep and borrow money, and (2), in all relevant cases, where did you put public money when it was up to you?

The entire discussion starts with each of us looking at what we think is right and then moving our money to a bank that shares our values.

You’ve got the power!

United we Meetup: Aaron, Janet S., Tara, Frances, Vincent, Yvonne, Sean, Janet F, Mark and Norman - Your DFA Meetup Team
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