DeForest Area Progressives
Meeting notes for June 15, 2015
Next meeting: Monday, June 21, 2015, 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. at Ginny’s, 3922 Partridge Road, Windsor Hill neighborhood.
There were eight people at the June 15th meeting.
Karen submitted $92 to the treasury from button sales and other sources.
Heather from SPARC (Sun Prairie progressive action team) will be here next meeting to talk about education.
Float building for the DeForest July 4th parade will take place at Ginny’s on Friday, June 19th at 10:00 a.m. The theme is “Capturing Democracy” with a butterfly and net motif. Thank you, Ginny and John St. for taking the lead on this. (Five of us did meet at that time and got some work done. Thanks for the pizza, Ginny.)
We had s lengthy discussion on whether or not to change the name of DeForest Area Progressives (DAP) to DeForest Area Action Team (DAAT) or something else. The issue arose out of a member’s alleging that the term “progressive” carries with it negative political baggage these days and that it might interfere with what we want to accomplish. Others disagreed. Some like being known by the term progressive. Janet noted that we are known in the election database she works with as DAAT. Some noted that we have become known as DAP among our peers and in the local community. Karen reminded us that the Boy Scouts dropped out of our recent “What’s in Your Water?” program because of the political connotations of progressive. Karen has spent some of her own money on procurement of the DAAT domain name for a website that she has already begun to establish. She thought we had already decided on the name change. JohnSki disputed that we had already decided, saying that his notes show that “no action was taken.” Someone suggested getting Marcia’s opinion, since she had founded the organization to begin with. We all agreed to continue discussion with no vote taken and no decision made on the name change yet at this time.
Karen reported that buttons sold like hotcakes at the Democratic State Convention last weekend. She is to be commended for her hard work on the button project. Thank you, Karen! She will be selling more at the Energy Fair in Custer next Friday. She has ordered a big bunch of supplies for further enterprises.
Karen and Marcia have signed up to attend the Networks Nation conference again this year in Phoenix in July. It is very expensive for them to go, so Karen has started an informal “crowd funding” project. She is accepting contributions, so get you money to her asap. Send checks made out to her or Marcia to Karen Edson, 3953 Finch Trail, DeForest, WI 53532. They have solicited groups, too, such as Wisconsin Grassroots Network and all of the groups in Progressive Partners, offering to attend whatever workshop the contributing group specifies. Then upon return, they will give presentations to the contributing group as reports on the workshop attended. In any case, Karen and Marcia will share everything they learn with as many people and groups as they can when they return. Good work, Karen and Marcia and good luck!
We had a long discussion on the Democratic Party of Wisconsin (DPW) convention attended by several of our members and associates last weekend in Milwaukee. The upset victory of Martha Laning was made possible by Jeff Smith (Eau Claire) heroically stepping down and casting his support to Laning, a relative newcomer to the party. Laning was nominated by Jeff and seconded by state Senator Kathleen Vinehout. The election of Laning might signal a shift to more influence in the state party by the progressive elements in it. The Friday caucuses were characterized by some shifty maneuvering outside the rules of the convention. The Rural Caucus was of particular interest. More than 200 people attended this year, compared to 60 last year. Our favorite son, Nate Timm, was re-elected chair of the Rural Caucus in spite of the irregularities; however, Nate’s running mates for vice chair and treasurer did not win.
Karen requested that anyone interested in the topics of clean water, Pipeline 61, or renewable energy contact her at email@example.com for new information.
JohnSki reported on his and Peter’s attendance at the Progressive Partners picnic-meeting last Sunday, the 14th , in Fitchburg. There were about 17 people in attendance from about six groups. We socialized and had some good snacks and drinks. A discussion was held on peoples’ attendance at and participation in the Dem Party of Wisconsin’s convention. Several people mentioned the irregularities in the processes, focusing on the Women’s Caucus, the LGBT Caucus, the Rural Caucus, and the Black Caucus. There was some sentiment to form a new caucus, the Progressive Caucus, in order to promote the more progressive elements of the party and its platform, which, it was noted, is quite progressive if you read it. JohnSki reported on DAP activities, followed by reports also from GROW of Waunakee, Oregon Area Progressives, Teal Team of West Madison, Middleton Action Team, and Active McFarland. JohnSki also reported on the formation of South Central Grassroots Alliance (SCGA). Other topics of discussion at this PP meeting were election integrity, voter ID and registration, the July 25th scheduled appreciation event for Jeff Smith, follow-up on what was done at the April PP meeting in Middleton, media task force of The Progressive magazine. MAT and OAP are working on getting Robert Reich to do a special progressive oriented event in downtown Madison on October 24th in conjunction with the Madison book fair. The next PP meeting will be September 13, 20125, in Mount Horeb, hosted by southwest area progressives.
Also noted is the August 8, 2015, Media Summit in Stevens Point, hosted by our own John Stanley. Various progressive publications and radio station people will meet to talk about organizing.