Tag Archives: Drinking Liberally

‘SPINtervention’: Frame yourself or get framed

drinking liberallyWe live in a world flooded with fact-free spin.

Faux News started it.

The astroturf Tea Party used it to rise to power.

And billions of dollars from the Kochtopus are being spent to perfect it, with the goal of solidifying corporate control over our government.

Don’t be depressed. Come hear Andrea “Connect the Dots Lady” Witte talk about spin and messaging tonight (March 26) at Drinking Liberally Tucson.

Witte explains complex issues– like healthcare reform or the federal deficit– by combining easy-to-understand graphics with facts and witty commentary. I’ve heard her speak on multiple topics, and she’s always entertaining and informative. Be prepared for some “ah-ha” moments. Event information in the BfAZ calendar here. Schmoozing begins at 6 p.m. on The Shanty’s patio, talk at 7 p.m.

UPDATED with New Events: Progressives, Mark Your Calendars for April Events!

RonstadtApril3 Update: New events have been added for April 6 and 9.

It’s only April 1, but already there is an impressive line-up of progressive events taking shape this month. In addition to these educational events, there are multiple fund-raisers for candidates, parties, and causes in April.  The list below is not meant to be all-inclusive. (Check out Facebook and the Pima County Democratic Party calendar or the calendar on Blog for Arizona for other events– including multiple opportunities to donate.) The Tucson events included here are all free and are related to one or more Progressive Democrats of America (PDA) core policy issues: economic and social justice, universal healthcare, clean elections, ending corporate personhood, clean environment, or ending the wars.

April 2: Community Vision for the Ronstadt Bus Center

The Tucson Bus Riders Union and the Primavera Foundation are sponsoring a community forum to gather Tucsonans’ ideas on what should be done with the Ronstadt Transit Center on Congress Street. For several years, developers have been eyeing the Ronstadt Center for demolition and relocation out of downtown. If you believe that it is important for a sustainable city to have a bus terminal downtown—near restaurants, retail shops, major employers, and the new street car line—come to this meeting at the Rialto Theater, beginning at 5:30. For more information, call 624-0312 or email busriders@tucsonbusridersunion.com or go to the event’s Facebook page http://www.facebook.com/events/496939023698809/.

April 3: Solar Energy Efficiency vs the Status Quo

The Tucson Chapter of Drinking Liberally is sponsoring a joint presentation by Bruce Plenk, City of Tucson Solar Energy Coordinator, and Russell Lowes, Sierra Club Rincon Group Energy Chair and Research Director forwww.SafeEnergyAnalyst.org. The DL social hour begins at 6 p.m., with the speakers beginning around 7 p.m. on the patio of The Shanty. For more information, check out DL’s Facebook event http://www.facebook.com/events/104680899727634/.

More events after the jump.

NEW,  April 6: Imperialism and Resistance in Central America

Kaufman, coordinator of the Alliance
for Global Justice, will present this talk at the Salt of the Earth Labor
College (SELC). With years of solidarity work with popular movements in Central
America, including recent trips to Honduras,
Kaufman is one of the strongest voices for a change in US foreign
policy. He has been calling for an end to US policies that leave many Central
Americans in poverty. The talk begins at 2 p.m. at SELC, 1902 E. Irene Vista. For more information, check out their website http://saltearthlaborcollege.org/index.php/schedule.

April 7 & 28: Cyclovia Tucson Car-Free Bike Rides

Cyclovia– a community event celebrating cycling and sustainable living– is holding two “car-free” and “care-free” community bike rides this month. On April 7, a downtown loop ride will take participants from downtown through the Armory Park Neighborhood. On April 28, the Cyclovia route will travel through midtown Tucson neighborhoods. Booths, demonstrations, and kids’ activities will dot the routes; both rides will be 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. Go to Cyclovia’s websitehttp://www.cycloviatucson.org/ for maps and more information.

April 9: The Privatization of Prisons: History and Effects

Saguaro Eastside Democrats will present Diane Wilson who will discuss the history of prison privatization and the results of this trend in Arizona and nationally. Her information is based on research by the American Friends Service Committee and the PEW Foundation. The meeting will be held at the New Spirit Lutheran Church, 8701 E. Old Spanish Trail; socializing begins at 6:30 p.m., formal program at 7 p.m. For more information, go to the Pima Democratic Party’s calendarhttp://www.pimadems.org/event/sed-the-privatization-of-prisons-history-and-effects/.

NEW, April 9: AFSC JusticePalooza

American Friends Service Committee's JusticePalooza will be held at La Cocina
in downtown, beginning at 6 p.m. Please join AFSC and friends for a night of
music, entertainment, and good food and drink. There's no cover, but AFSC
gets 10% of everything you purchase at La Cocina. For more information,
including a list of musical guests, go to their Facebook page http://www.facebook.com/events/547114365310197/.

April 11: Stop Sheriff Joe Arpaio

Not long after Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio won re-election in November 2012, a recall began. William James Fisher, Recall Arpaio Campaign Chair, will detail how and why Democrats, Republicans, and Independents are working together to recall Sheriff Joe. The event begins at 6 p.m. at Las Cazuelitas Event Center, 1365 W. Grant Road. For more information about the recall, go to Respect Arizona’s website https://www.recallarpaio.com/.

April 15: Can a Local Bank Protect You from a National Recession?

Democrats of Greater Tucson will present a talk on public banking by Jim Hannley, a registered investment advisor and chair of PDA Tucson’s Economic and Social Justice Issue Organizing Team. DGT meets for lunch at noon at the Dragon View Restaurant, 400 N. Bonita. Buffet lunch is $8.50.

PDA: Envisioning a more progressive Arizona Democratic Party

Taxby Pamela Powers Hannley

Are you one of those Democrats who grumbles about the
Arizona Democratic Party’s (ADP) slide into Republican-lite territory?

 Are you tired of Blue Dog Democratic candidates?

 Are you tired of the party’s weak stances on hot-button

Did you ever wonder why the ADP’s Progressive Caucus has so
little power—despite being the state party’s largest caucus? (Maybe you didn’t
even know that the ADP had a progressive caucus?)

Are you ready for change?

If you said, “Hell, yeah!” to any of the above questions, then
it’s time to stop muttering and start acting. On Wednesday, Nov. 14, the Tucson
Chapters of Drinking Liberally/Progressive Democrats of America (PDA) are
holding a special meeting  at The Shanty—beginning
at 6 p.m. with FREE pizza. The focus of the meeting will be on envisioning and
brainstorming a more progressive Democratic Party in Arizona. Former Arizona Legislator and PDA
Tucson coordinator Phil Lopes will lead the discussion.

Why should you attend? Read the details after the jump.

County has 339 elected
precinct committee persons (PCs). PCs are the grassroots foot soldiers of the
Democratic Party—the people who walk door to door with campaign literature, the
people who make phone calls and remind you it’s election day, the people who
donate, the people who go to meetings and volunteer for committees, the people
with more than one candidate sign in their yards and more than one bumper sticker
on their cars, the people the Democratic Party depends on—the people who built
the party

In Pima County, 80 of the 339 elected PCs (24%) are on PDA
Tucson’s membership mailing list, and PDA Tucson is only one of six PDA
chapters in Arizona.
This is an opportunity for change.

PDA and Drinking Liberally are extending a special
invitation to all local PCs—and anyone else who wants to work for progressive
change in Arizona—to attend the Nov. 14 meeting to hear about how
we—together—can encourage the Arizona Democratic Party to step back from the
Republican-lite cliff and become more progressive. (Did I mention FREE pizza?)

Every two years—following the November election—the Democratic
and Republican Parties reorganize. Between now and the end of 2012, each
Legislative District (LD) will reorganize. This means that new LD leaders will
be chosen—district chair, vice chair(s), secretary, treasurer, county executive
committee representatives, statewide committee representatives.

Following the districts’ reorganization, the county parties
will reorganize, and lastly the statewide party will reorganize in early 2013. The
ADP’s Statewide Committee and officers—plus the counties’ executive committee—make
policy and set the tone and direction of the party.

So, if you’re one of those grumblers, now is the time to
stop complaining and start acting. The first step is the Nov. 14 meeting. Bring
your ideas and come on down. (Check out Drinking Liberally's event on Facebook, or PDA Tucson's Facebook page.)

The next step is to attend your LD’s reorganizational
meeting and volunteer for change. According to the Pima County Democratic Party
, the LD3 reorganization meeting will be Nov. 26; LD9, Nov. 27; LD10, Nov. 28; LD 2,
Dec. 1. Watch their calendar for future scheduled meetings.

TUSD candidate forum: How can TUSD be improved? (video)

by Pamela Powers Hannley

In this 7th video from the Drinking Liberally Tucson Unified School District (TUSD) candidate forum, candidates discuss how they would improve the district, including how they would increase graduation rates.

Watch this new video after the jump. To view all of the videos in this series, go to my YouTube channel or go here for all of my BfAZ stories.


TUSD candidate forum: What about standardized testing? (video)

by Pamela Powers Hannley

Standardized testing to evaluate students, teachers, and schools is a nationwide hot button issue. Educator and author Diane Ravitch— once a supporter of No Child Left Behind, testing, and charter schools– now tours the country speaking out against high-stakes testing (like the AIMS test). From her Wikipedia page

High-stakes testing, "utopian" goals, "draconian" penalties, school closings, privatization, and charter schools didn't work, she concluded. "The best predictor of low academic performance is poverty—not bad teachers."[7]

Ravitch said that the charter school and testing reform movement was started by "right wing think tanks like the Heritage Foundation," for the purpose of destroying public education and teachers' unions.[8] … Of Education Secretary Arne Duncan's Race to the Top program, Ravitch said in a 2011 interview it "is an extension of No Child Left Behind …[,] all bad ideas." She concluded "We are destroying our education system, blowing it up by these stupid policies. And handing the schools in low-income neighborhoods over to private entrepreneurs does not, in itself, improve them. There's plenty of evidence by now that the kids in those schools do no better, and it's simply a way of avoiding their – the public responsibility to provide good education." [Emphasis added.]

How much testing is enough? How much is too much? Here the Tucson Unified School District (TUSD) board candidates' opinions on standardized testing in the video after the jump. This is the sixth video from the Drinking Liberally
TUSD candidate forum on September 26. To view all of the videos in this series,
go to my YouTube channel.