cocoaOn Tuesday I attended the 14th annual Georgia WAND Real State of the Union event.  As in years past, Jay Bookman, liberal columnist for the AJC and Janice Mathis, President of the National Council of Negro Women (NCNW) addressed the crowd with their take on the current “state” of our union.  Initially meant to be a counter to President George Bush’s annual address, this event has morphed into a progressive commentary on our nation.  Third in the lineup this year was co-director of Rise Up Georgia, Nelini Stamp.  

Ms Mathis began the evening with her dynamic and endearing commentary on women, in general, and women of color, specifically, and their roles in the theme of the evening, Solidarity.  She is a great speaker and  commentator.  She talked about the federal budget, released earlier in the day by President Obama, and reminded us that how we spend our money is a clear commentary on what we value.  Next up, Mr Bookman, regaled us with the clown car that is the GOP lineup for the presidential nomination this year.  As always, he pointed to the inconsistencies and outrageousness of the right and the difficulty and challenges facing the left.

So, imagine my surprise to learn that the greatest contribution I can make now, as a mid-50’s, white, straight, single woman, is to make hot cocoa and deliver it to activists camped out at Occupy events, overnight protests, and other activities. When asked what older white women can do to contribute, Ms Stamps said “you could bring us hot cocoa”. Apparently, that’s what solidarity means in 2016.  Never mind the lessons you’ve learned, the money you’ve parted with, the ideas you’ve promoted, the candidates you’ve helped, the fights you’ve fought.

I adore youthful exuberance and welcome it in all it’s sloppy idealism.  I was that young activist 50 years ago. As a child, as young as 6 or 7, at the hip of my very active mother, I learned about canvassing, phone banking, sticking labels and sealing envelopes – all before the digital age – with phone books, multiple phone lines, and stamps that had to licked.  In high school I staged a sit-in at our local school board for reasons I no longer recall – but I’m sure it was important! Also, my first foray into button-making.  In college I protested tuition increases in a battle against ultra-conservative Richard DeVoss (of Amway and the GOP takeover of Michigan); later I marched in Take Back the Night rallies; I held a job that advocated for culturally appropriate child welfare case management – which was quite radical in the 1980’s – so radical that President Reagan cut our program; and I chauffeured an unapologetic environmentalist  Congressional candidate around her district to community meetings and town halls.  I was a tiny fish in a very big pond but I believe I made a difference and helped further a progressive agenda.   It’s a marathon.  Later,  I helped form a progressive organization that help in Get-Out-The-Vote efforts in 2004, 2006, and 2008.  I give time and treasure to causes and candidates with whom I shared values and ideals. I registered voters, I wrote email blasts, I make buttons, I canvassed.

I often mention in passing that my Chanel #5, my cashmere sweaters, my snarkiness, or my impatience may get my “Progressive Card” pulled.  I’m not so worried about that now.  I think it’s time I turned it in.

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WinefromCharlieKnock.Knock. Hello, is anyone out there?

In the wake of the Great Peach Pundit Blogger Breakup I felt the timing might be right to dust off my password and see if this thing still works.

It appears it does.

Yay.

Just when you thought blogging had gotten dull, leave it to the son of master craftsman Daedalus, the creator of the Labyrinth to shake us all up. During the last five days I have watched the unraveling of one of the most informative, mature and active Georgia Political blogs, Peach Pundit. Late last week we got a tip something was amiss, then Icarus wrote this, which lead to speculation on Facebook, then a long series of posts, like this and this.   It’s been a riveting few days, filled with prominent members of the Georgia political blogging community going public regarding the split saying essentially “it’s not you, it’s me, really”.

Okay, riiiiiight.

In a nutshell it looks like Peach Pundits’ two daddie’s got a quickie Reno divorce, but just one of them got to keep all the cool friends. This divorce isn’t going to land the next cover of The National Enquirer or The Star, because sweet baby jesus on a breadstick no one wants to see Erick’s head photo shopped onto a Kardashian’s body.  That said, it’s still big news around this neck of the woods. Heck even I came to rely on those handy 7:30 am emails from Mike filled with wonk and a wee bit of snark.

As many others have said, and I agree, PP came a long way in tone and quality under the leadership of Icarus Pundit.  The new venture, Georgia Pol is very exciting. I wish Charlie well as Publisher and look forward to more of the smart writing and the ongoing discussions about policy. It was no surprise me that eventually just writing about policy wasn’t going to be good enough, so when he hung out his Policy Best shingle it was a logical step. As many others have remarked, many of us from very different points of view have found common ground with Charlie. Unlikely as it might seem, Charlie and I too have become friends, and yes, it involved wine, quite a lot of it.

While listening to GriftDrift last Friday, it was hard to not reflect on my early days of Blogging. He called it the Wild West, but I prefer to think of us as Pirates or Privateers, you know who you are- paid to publish some drivel of a press release.

Prior to 2002-2003 in order to be politically active you had to put pants on and actually leave your house. Once outside your choices of activities weren’t stellar.  You could attend a Meet-up (not to be confused with a “Do-Up”) or you might go to a local political party or candidates HQ to volunteer or for a truly terrifying experience attend a county parties monthly breakfast or business meeting.

Shudder.

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icon_flaming_mailDear Jess McIntoshVice President of Communications,

I am in receipt of your recent email, titled “Defunding Planned Parenthood”.

If I’m honest, normally I would have deleted this message bulk fashion a month from now since they’ve become so very tiresome, always the same one note, one tune. But in this case I decided to find out how you are planning to righteously stand with our sisters in the struggle.

I might have raised my fist a little at the thought.

Imagine my shock when all it turned out to be was yet another fundraising pitch for your organization. I felt like Ralphie and the Ovaltine decoder ring.

Disappointed and sad might cover it initially, but then the more I looked at the email, the insipid donation request, the completely insincere “solidarity” language, the ugly graphic, the stupid fake “forward” it all filled me such an unquenchable rage that I can’t concentrate on typing.

Raising money off  RWNJ sabotage and treachery directed at of one of the few places women and men can be helped in a nonjudgemental and compassionate manner, have you no shame!  All for the low price of $3.00, what are you Better Georgia?  Three dollars, is the stupidest amount of money ever. I remember the days when Emily’s List didn’t get out of bed for less than a $250.oo ask.

You realize that Planned Parenthood isn’t raising money off this situation. If anyone should be raising money of the nefarious antics of the extremists it would be them, right?

Go back to the drawing board ladies.

Well maybe not exactly the subtle tone of “shade” after all.

 

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Four years later, City Hall still hasn’t announced winner of ambitious contest — or $25,000 prize

Barth says they organized a team and spent “hundreds and hundreds” of man-hours fine-tuning the 42-page proposal, which they turned in at deadline.

“We were trying to do so much with it and flesh out that idea to the greatest extent possible,” Barth says. A few months later, they were named one of three finalists for the $25,000 prize.

But around the summer of 2012, City Hall officials essentially stopped communicating about the urban farm. They still have not named a winner and have yet to give out the cash prize. The website that once housed information about the competition has been taken over by a Japanese-speaking manga fan. This past February, the three finalists asked the city for closure and for Reed to finally announce the winner. It went unanswered. The vacant lot still remains vacant.

Thanks to Creative Loafing for finally giving this story some coverage. Maybe the “news outlets” will pick it up now that you’ve done the legwork.

urban_farm

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BatGurl here. It’s been a hot minute, (*blows dust off cape*) but I’m back because someone is being petulant again.

Since losing the Chair’s election in 2013, the Non-Partisan Mayor of Atlanta hasn’t been around the DPG much. He refused to endorse our nominee for Governor. He’s talked sh*t about the DPG. And now, boys and girls, the rumors are circling that he will be running a candidate for DPG Chair–maybe Tharon Johnson, who you may recall, was a Chairman of the DPG Coordinated Campaign effort, and has also joined the chorus of smack talking, which is a really ineffective way of campaigning if you ask me.

The Non-Partisan Mayor of Atlanta entire argument is we “shouldn’t reward failure.”

Well friends, let’s talk about failure.

Kasim Reed failed to endorse Jason Carter for Governor, yeah BatGurl is not letting this go. When he did finally manage to string together a handful of supportive words at the Bill Clinton event, I think every eye rolled in Paschals. He failed to be forthright about it. He kept saying that Jason never endorsed him in 2009. Well guess what kiddos, Jason Carter wasn’t elected until a special election in 2010.

He failed to raise money for the Party. He didn’t even come to the convention! (Neither did Tharon Johnson *feigns shock*).

He failed to campaign for any of the Democratic down-ballot candidates.

He failed new voters who registered with the New Georgia Project because he NEVER came out in support the newly registered voters while his Republican buddies successfully suppressed votes.

He failed to call out his old colleague, Senator Fran Millar, for pushing for an end to Sunday vote and for being a racist too.

And you wanna know why I think he failed to do that? Because his cuddle buddy, Nathan Deal is probably gonna throw Sunday voting to the curb. And the Mayor would hate to piss of his BFF (side note—this Batgurl knows neither of them are Batman or Robin).

He has failed to hold the Republican Governor accountable for any of his many misdeeds. Like this, this or this. Where was the Mayor? He was silent.

In 2012, the Mayor supported Aaron Watson and Lamar Willis for re-election for City Council and Ruben McDaniel for School Board. Both lost = Mayor Reed Failure. (But he just got Aaron Watson and his campaign manager an appointment to the MILRA board likely pleasing  his pal REPUBLICAN Governor Nathan Deal.)

The Mayor supported Alisha Thomas Morgan for State School Superintendent. She lost = Mayor Reed Failure.

Oh yeah, before that, the Mayor lost the Atlanta Braves (you know, just a professional baseball team. No big dealz…) = Mayor Reed Failure.

Ooooh ooooh, he lost his cool in the snowstorm = Mayor Reed Failure. And can we all just watch these national clips again? Like this one, and this one and this one. I mean, it was pretty funny when Al Roker called him out.

I guess we could go all the way back to the transportation referendum that he lost = Mayor Reed Failure.

But seriously, if Kasim Reed doesn’t want to “reward failure,” why isn’t he calling out the DNC and running a candidate against Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Shultz? Democrats lost throughout the nation. But DNC member, Kasim Reed, is silent.

Because Kasim Reed is a failure to Democrats. It’s no wonder that the rumor Batgurl is hearing the most right now is that the Mayor is planning to switch to the Republican Party for the 2018 Governor’s race.

This is not the type of leadership our DPG needs. It’s not the type of leadership our city, or our state needs. I wish I didn’t even have to write this, but our future is hanging on the balance of this one (that and those twits keep going to the press with all sorts of lies).

I think there may be some more to say. But I’ll wait until after the holiday. The Non-Partisan Mayor of Atlanta and Tharon Johnson are holiday buzz kills.

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