Friday, September 19, 2008

How I know I am getting old

Yesterday I noticed that Irvine Welsh, author of Trainspotting and The Marabou Stork Nightmares, would be at my office talking today at 1pm. I thought that would *so cool* except when I looked today to see the details, I noticed Joseph Stiglitz, Nobel Prize winning economist, would be talking at 12.

I chose Stiglitz.

How mature.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Voter Fraud

Think Palin is too much even for the middle america christians? Think Obama is a shoe-in because, well, duh, the other folks are too scary?

OK, so even IF the masses are convinced not to vote against their own interests. Even IF the masses want Obama over MCain... what if it doesn't matter?

I linked this in my "What I'm Reading," but I think it's important enough to draw attention to. Voter fraud is starting, it is in full swing, and what is being done?

If we want this change to happen, we need to keep an eye on the process itself, and see to it that the election is not lost to vote fraud and scare tactics.

funniest (scariest? saddest?) video of Palin yet

This about sums it up:

Actually, I take that back. It doesn't even scratch the surface. Palin isn't so much funny as she is scary as hell. (do you think we should charge rape victims for their rape kits? or teach creationism in schools? ban books from libraries? Have you thought about what kind of judges this woman would like to appoint?)

I've added a little thingamajig ("What I'm Reading") to my blog page which shows some of the blog posts I've found interesting. Lately, a lot of these are about politics, and they are very very illuminating. Please take a look!

I read a *lot* of blogs and I've gotten a ton of neat information from the Scienceblogs in particular. In addition to the expected science commentary, there is a ton of really well thought out analysis of current events.

If you are reading my blog through a feed reader, you'll miss this stuff, but I invite you to take a look at a few of these and see if you might want to add them to your feed reader.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

I'm a Community Organizer

psst, pass it on!

One of the most disturbing things I saw last week at the Republican National Convention was the open ridicule of community organizers. It shocked even me, already having a low opinion of the politicians in that party, to see the derision aimed at those who work in their communities to make the world a better place. I had assumed community organizers were a shared value of the big cities and the small towns, whose values they claim to be solely theirs, I had assumed that we all held in reverence the idea that grassroots organization and working together was what made our country and democracy possible and great.

I guess I was wrong. Giuliani and Palin made fun of people who work in their communities, and the convention attendees ate it up. Demonizing people who serve their communities was met with laughter and applause.

So, fine. Here it is.

I am a community organizer, and I'm for Obama.

  • In the last year, I have worked as part of a team that launched the first year of my company's global service initiative. We had several thousand people all over the world doing service in their communities. I not only organized project in my own community, but as the coordinator of project signup tools and therefor having a lot of work with the project leads, I helped community organizers all over the world! (maybe they're for Obama too)

Before that, I 've been a community organizer in many ways:
  • I was part of a small team that took on fundraising and other issues for a motorcyclist friend with a massive head injury stranded thousands of miles from home. We mobilized the community to raise funds and awareness, and coordinate his return home and ongoing visitors and care in the local hospital.
  • I've served on planning and execution various large-scale service projects and events with Girl Scouts over the years.
My parents are community organizers. My grandparents are community organizers. This value of service and community has long been the thing I admire most about them. To see this tradition mocked so openly by the Republican Party was shocking and disheartening to me. I expect to differ on issues of politics, but to find that we don't share even the same basic value of people taking action and involvement in their communities was new to me. It tells me there's no place in their view of small towns and small people making big impacts. In this view, a person has no hope or responsibility to make a difference. Maybe they are saying that action and change should only come from big government and trickle down?

I'm a community organizer, and the Republicans think that's disgusting and ridiculous.

I'd like to start a chain here. If you have a blog, please take a moment to talk about community organization in your life. Are you a community organizer? Do you think community organizers are stupid like the Republicans do?
No blog? How about an email, or, heck, even snail mail.

pssst, pass it on!