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You Solve It, Pass the Chips

Bachelorette party food by rlj.

The Prez wrote me an email today. You can read it below. Did you get one, too?

Riverdaughter suggests that we PUMAs host our own party and contact the new DNC Chairman, Governor Tim Kaine, directly. We can let him know what we think about the President’s placation of Republicans in removing the birth control funding from the handout that doesn’t solve anything and still leaves out homeowners, women, and longtime unemployed stimulus package. Thanks for the direct link to new leader’s helper, RD.

I’d like to underline the insidious Big Brother notion of these house parties. Now, I’m as much a party-lover as the best of you. However, this house party meeting model with email and web sign-ups is taken directly from moveon.org’s organizational tools to influence the government they just helped put in power. It was also adapted by the DNC to host parties during the 2008 campaign season. If memory serves, the DNC even used a similar web-based organizational tool to promote Obama events on their website during the Democratic Primaries in April 2008 when Hillary Clinton was still in the race. The house party model consists of a central, piped in speaker, by video and/or phone, with question and answer period to go along with meet yer neighbors, let’s have food, and get to know each other and who’s in our camp.

I’ve been touting the effectiveness of this model for nine months after seeing how an org of which I was a charter member used it to help put Barack Obama in power. In doing so, moveon.org members were subsequently used and thrown under the bus. I wonder if they’ll ever awake to find that they’re in intensive care?

Our PUMA movement could use this model to start cooking up recipes in the kitchen. Obama said we’re the ones he was counting on for change and that the American people need to get involved. I guess he hopes we’ll come up with some pretty good ideas after Big Brother tells us what’s good for us about spending our money.

Lady Boomer —

The economic crisis is growing more serious every day, and the time for action has come.

Last week, the House of Representatives passed the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, which will jumpstart our economy and put more than 3 million people back to work.

I hope to sign the recovery plan into law in the next few weeks. But I need your help to spread the word and build support.

It’s not enough for this bill to simply pass Congress. Americans need to know how it will affect their lives — they need to know that help is on the way and that this administration is investing in economic growth and stability.

[IMPORTANT NOTE TO READERS: And about that stimulus plan . . . You can read Puma PAC’s decoding of it here. Our community and the whole country owe a debt of gratitude to Puma PAC members who devoted their time and noggins to bring to light what the people who run our government are trying to shove down our throats.]

Governor Tim Kaine has agreed to record a video outlining the recovery plan and answering questions about what it means for your community. You can submit your questions online and then invite your friends, family, and neighbors to watch the video with you at an Economic Recovery House Meeting.

Join thousands of people across the country by hosting or attending an Economic Recovery House Meeting this weekend.

The stakes are too high to allow partisan politics to get in the way.

That’s why I’ve consulted with Republicans as well as Democrats to put together a plan that will address the crisis we face.

I’ve also taken steps to ensure an unprecedented level of transparency and accountability. Once it’s passed, you will be able to see how every penny in this plan is being spent.

You can help restore confidence in our economy by making sure your friends, family, and neighbors understand how the recovery plan will impact your community.

Sign up to host or attend an Economic Recovery House Meeting and submit your question for the video now:

http://my.barackobama.com/recovery

Our ability to come together as a nation in difficult times has never been more important.

I know I can rely on your spirit and resolve as we lead our country to recovery.

Thank you,

President Barack Obama

P.S. — If you can’t host or attend an Economic Recovery House Meeting, you can still submit your questions for Governor Kaine and then share the video with your friends and family this weekend. Learn more here:

http://my.barackobama.com/recovery

Party to solve the country’s problems, anyone? I know! Soon there’ll be a fundraiser component to it, where we just raise money flat out for the government, instead of the DNC, RNC or moveon. You in?

Oh, and speaking of which . . . Excuse me, is it weird to have the New DNC Chairman appearing in a supposedly neutral role to the whole country at these parties? Perhaps, then we can become more familiar with our Party leaders, so they’ll become just like all the other neutral people in power who are unselfishly interested in bettering our lives? What the ????

[cross-posted from Lady Boomer NYC]

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In Your Wildest Dreams . . .

[splashcast c KJMA4552XP]

In Your Wildest Dreams . . .

Did you ever think you/we would be here at this time in this election year—refugees from our Party of origin, protesting its candidate? Goes to show, we’re still the rebel’s rebel! Ain’t that the story of my life? If that’s the case, and they do pull it off, I’m concerned for my freedoms. It’s so weird, with Obama, Dean, Pelosi, Reid, Frank, Dodd, orange kool-aid types running things, that I feel just as suppressed as when the far Right was in charge.

Many of our disenchanted were out canvassing or making phone calls as Democrats for McCain/Palin last weekend, and they will continue until the election. Some people stepped up right away. Others have cautiously dipped a toe in with mixed feelings. Some PUMA/Just Say No Deal coalition members say it’s the only way to voice our stand for a just and transparent democracy. They consider McCain/Palin more trustworthy, prudent for the economy, and ethical, although most of us disagree with their stance on reproductive rights and the environment.

The Nature of Palin

In my assessment, Palin was very good-natured about being trashed on SNL right in front of her face twice, first by Tina Fey whom she watched on the monitor, then by Alec Baldwin, who told her she was hotter in person. She looked comfy in her body as she moved and danced, which is always a good sign to me.

In comments broadcast the following Sunday from a taped interview on local TV-9 here in Manhattan, Palin spoke of how you much fun it was to do the show, and how nice the cast and staff were to her. When asked if the jokes about her bothered her, she replied that in deciding to go for the job, you have to be thick skinned, but that it hurt to have her family trashed in the MSM. However, she said that running for office is a group deal; everyone in the family knows they need to be on board and also have thick skins. That strikes me as a pretty healthy, energetic attitude. I guess it bothers me that in order to be considered cool, Governor Palin has to get approval by actor, writer, director, Tina Fey, (wow, she’s accomplished—turnabout) who also belittled her on Letterman the previous evening.

Of course, these days we want our prez to be cewl, which is why we liked Bill (in addition to his being brilliant) when he wore shades and played sax on Arsenio and MTV, and jammed along with the band at his Inauguration Ball. Remember, Bill was a product of the type of school system I grew up in, where they offered orchestra, chorus, art, drama, PE, and square dancing. This system helped round pegs like me fit into square holes, but I digress . . .

Donna, Howard, Remember Us?

Nobama has warned: Democrats, be careful, you can still mess it up, just when it looks like you’ve got it in the bag. However, I’m a bit disheartened these days. With Obama raising a record $150 million in September, and 175,000 turning up in Missouri on Saturday, October 19, you might understand why.

So I got this classic Moody Blues song in my head and checked out the YouTube. Their video is your tacky eighties fare, basically about a girlfriend of a rock star. Don’t miss the choreographed dancin’ in the street. But the lyrics could be anybody wondering about a long lost love, friend, dear one, or someone from whom they’re estranged.

This got me wondering if Howard Dean and Donna Brazille ever think about us? You know those bitter white women, old people, the ones Donna declared they didn’t need, and Howard acted like they could win without. They’ll have to, as far as PUMA and Just Say No Deal-ers are concerned. Playing out the roles in the video, I kept getting hung up with the end—when the band is dragging him away, and he just can’t help it, of course. And the girl is standing watching him go, after having tried to get in touch several times, and she’s now a bored housewife. I just couldn’t wrap my brain around which role fit Howard, Donna, me or us. Neither, I think, because we’re not suckers and they ain’t helpless. But that’s not what’s important. It’s the wildest dreams part that’s on my mind, and upon which I’d like to refocus some energy and attention.

If You Want It

Concurring with riverdaughter about the anger, I think it’s time to bring out the heavy-duty tools—as in prayer and intention! You know about The Secret? Sshhh, don’t tell, but as Norman Vincent Peale and healers believe, “You Can If You Think You Can.” It’s like The Little Engine That Could, right? I saw The Secret the movie, didn’t read the book, hah, but it’s about manifesting your life by feeling, thinking, seeing, and being your intention in every cell of your body. Actually, that’s how I work with chronic pain as a somatic practitioner and hands-on-healer. I put my attention into blending with, then overpowering the sensations of pain with my complete attention, leaving no room in my touch or mind for it to be otherwise. Sometimes it’s a battle, pain can be a stubborn sucker, but I always win.

Group prayer can create miracles for its willing recipients. Many people have experienced the power of prayer ease their own or a loved one’s plight. When in dire situations, people may pray for the best possible outcome and the recipient feels at ease, although the result might not be the desired one. I’m no evangelical, but I am ecumenical and believe that no matter what form of prayer or deity one uses as intercessor, it will forward their intention. One might say that the panic-driven recent stock market sell-off, which many observers have remarked is psychological, is a form of prayer or belief working in the mode of fear or negativity. In other words, attention may also be directed negatively and have an affect, as in voodoo. Being a good witch, I always advocate for manifesting for good.

It must be in the zeitgeist, because in her Sunday Late Night Open Thread, riverdaughter played a beautiful video rendition of “Down to the River to Pray.” Earlier in the evening, Heidi Li Feldman, Marc Rubin, and Harriet Christian joined RD, who filled in for Sheri Tag on her “No We Won’t” PURrr show. Recalling all the February HAKA that Obama would beat Hillary according to the numbers, and that there was no way she could win, Heidi Li made the point that this is basically a theme that has been perpetrated upon the American public. It’s like an ad that’s been played often enough over time. She said, “It’s only a self-fulfilling prophesy if you let it,” which reminds me of John Lennon’s, “War is over, if you want it.”

I’m not saying only pray. I’m saying pray and take action. Harriet says: Be pro-active! Do whatever you can to stop Obama. Heidi and Marc say donate to Democrats For Principle Before Party so they can run an ad during the World Series. Murphy invites you to visit PUMA PAC’s Action Center. And last but not least, find out how to join in a variety of activities by visiting Just Say No Deal.

Perchance To Dream

I’ve arrived at my point in a roundabout way, but . . . please use this entry as a way to dream. Listen to the music, take the poll, and comment away about your dreams. You’ll notice that I did not include Hillary as a presidential choice, because I’m asking that you focus on the choices we currently have. We used to dream about some illegality knocking BO out of the race, but in two weeks, with the momentum now, Hillary is just not, well, dare I say, there’s a limit to my band width. Although, of course, you can dream and write her in under “other.” For any interlopers, know that the PUMA McCain choice is a protest vote. Oh, and yes, I question that the options include a Dean/Brazille, et al apology, and, sadly, fair elections.

What is your wildest election dream given our options? Make it happen, people. In its short life to date, isn’t that what our ragtag underfunded coalition has always been about? By paying attention and speaking up, haven’t we actually made a dent in the narrative of this election cycle and the vetting of its candidates? A determined voice that roars like a PUMA. Who knows what we yet can accomplish? In your wildest dreams . . .

Prologue: A New Voice —

From THE JOURNEY by Mary Oliver, 1986

” . . . though the voices around you kept shouting their bad advice . . .”

It was already late
enough, and a wild night,
and the road full of fallen
branches and stones.
But little by little,
as you left their voices behind,
the stars began to burn
through the sheets of clouds,
and there was a new voice
which you slowly
recognized as your own [. . .]

performed by The Keith Jarrett Trio

When You Wish Upon A Star

Music: Leigh Harline
Lyrics: Ned Washington

When a star is born
They posses a gift or two
One them is this
They have the power
To make a wish come true

When you wish upon a star
Makes no difference who you are
Anything your heart desires
Will come to you

If your heart is in your dream
No request is too extreme
When you wish upon a star
As dreamers do

Fate is kind
She brings to those to love
The sweet fulfillment of
Their secret longing

Like a bolt out of the blue
Fate steps in and sees you through
When you wish upon a star
Your dreams come true

[cross-posted from Lady Boomer NYC]

Our PUMA Anti-Convention

Lady Boomer NYC as Miss Piggy Puma, courtesy of Gary and Mawm

.-.-.-.-.-.-.-.-.-.-.-.-.-.-.-.-.-.-.-.-.-.-.-.-.-.-.-.

Our PUMA Anti-Convention

“So, how’d it go at the Democratic Convention?”

I get that a lot from my family and friends. They know I had been working the entire year to get Hillary Clinton elected President while “raging against the machine,” and that I was going to Denver to protest. I replied,

“Ummm . . . good. . . . I, I wasn’t really at The Convention.

We were like . . . the Anti-Convention!”

Post-Denver, although still mourning for what could have been, most hardcore, grassroots Hillary supporters have moved on — in one way or another. They know, or are deciding, what they will do with their votes and/or their efforts. Will they work for one campaign or other at the top, or just support down-ticket candidates? They are mulling over whether to: vote nothing on top, vote third party, write in Hillary’s name, stay home, or cast a protest vote for John McCain. For most, that would be their first Republican vote ever, and they do not take it lightly. The only reason they would do it is to protest Barack Obama and Democratic Party leaders who subverted the democratic process and 18 million voters.

But I can’t fully move on yet. This story is roiling around inside me, unwilling to be forgotten. One week plus is old news, past prime, but I keep getting these “little messages.” Last week I ran into my neighborhood Brazilian Café and struck up a conversation with husband and wife owners, Marcello and Juliet. I’d been socked away in my “Puma Den” for the last six months, making rich stove top espressos at home on the cheap.

Marcello asked, “I heaven’t seen you for a while. Where have you bean? What have you been doing?”

I hesitated protectively, having lived undercover using my handle for so long that I had to consciously produce my real name in my head before saying it. “Actually, I’ve been doing a lot of writing most of the year, political writing. Do you know what blogs are? I have a blog and contribute to other sites and efforts.”

They continued the conversation as they scurried about their business, “Oh really, and who were you supporting for President?”

My personal self gulped inside my political self having been so underground and divided, “Actually, I was supporting Hillary Clinton, working to get her elected. I still support her and believe she would make the best President.”

They both jumped to attention and gravitated back to the counter to face me, “Really? We’re for her too!”

(See why I can’t stop?) “That’s great,” I cooed, as I came clean, telling them about my blog and links to others, our efforts prior to and during Denver, and our work to ensure a roll call, a floor vote, and a record of the truth about this election.

They pointed out to me, “It’s just like 2000, Gore and Bush!”

“Right!” I answered, “and now from our own. It seems so much worse that way. Did you know that Democrats have a weird gene that makes them eat their own?”

They laughed. We talked about the delegates. They had seen the same things that Puma and Just Say No Deal Coalition members have been uncovering, observing, highlighting, and shouting about all year long: the subversion, bullying, and undemocratic processes. They could not believe when they saw the vote halted and delegates switched. “We voted. We went in and pulled the lever. Why should we even bother?”

“I KNOW. How do they do it in Brazil?”

“We vote. It gets recorded. Somebody gets elected. That’s it.”

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