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Democracy For The Southern Adirondack/Tricounty Area
Tuesday, November 28, 2006
Tricounty DFA Update: Holiday Party, Peace Day and more
Hello Everyone;

Hope you all have a grateful and restful Thanksgiving! In This Update:

1. Washington County Democratic Holiday Party & Gillibrand
2. Peace Day Event Saturday
3. DFA Link-up Meeting on 12/6
4. Tom Hayden: Administration Negotiating Return of Baathists?
5. The Nation Mag: Last Word On Effort To Depose Gov.Dean
6. Friday Progressive Film Fest

1. Washington County Democratic Committee Holiday Party

Late word is that Rep.-Elect Gillibrand is scheduled to appear at the Washington County Democrat's Holiday Party Fund Raiser.

The event is Friday, December 1st, 2006, 7 - 9 pm, Rice Mansion Inn, 16 W. Main St. Cambridge, NY

$25 per person includes Hors d’oerves and Desserts by Spoonful Catering, Wine, beer, soft drinks
Wine Basket Raffle and Silent auction. Great Holiday Gifts: art, jewelry, certificates for dining and shopping in local stores!
Cocktail Party or Holiday Attire. Newly elected Democrats plan to join us.

Make your check to WCDC (Washington County Democratic Committee) and send to Ed Dowling, 1 Highland Street, Greenwich NY 12834 or pay online at Washington County Democratic Website:

SPACE IS LIMITED! Call Lisa (854-3388) or Sheila Comar (642-9566) for reservations

2. Peace Day Event Saturday

The Peace Center Task Force of the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Glens Falls will hold a non-denominational Peace Fair from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m., Saturday, December 2, 2006, rain or shine.

This diverse gathering of peace-minded folk is free to the public, with gifts, booths, food, music, games, workshops and free child care. Give peace for the holidays!

About a dozen peace-oriented organizations will table, selling everything from t-shirts to books to vegetarian soup and desserts. Well-known area musicians will play, and there will be peace games and stories for young folk and face painting, bubbles and free child care for the little ones.

Workshops will be presented throughout the dayt.

The Unitarian Universalist Church is located at 21 Weeks Road off Upper Glen in Queensbury, a mile north of Quaker Road, exit 19 off I87, an hour north of Albany.

3. DFA Link-up Meeting on 12/6

We will be holding our usual monthly Greater Glens Falls DFA Meetup or Linkup on December 6th, a week from this Wednesday, at the Rockhill Bakehouse Cafe in downtown Glens Falls at 7pm.

At the last meeting there was a lot of interest in the possibility of getting Al Gore's new video The Inconvenient Truth for showing. Bob Jacobs checked it and it is possible, so we will be trying to get that. Please let me know if you are interested!

For more info check out DFA-Link at:

4. Tom Hayden: Administration Negotiating Return of Baathists?

There was a piece on the Huffington Post this week by activist Tom Hayden that's been getting a lot of attention. Hayden reveals evidence that the US military and elements of the administration are negotiating with former generals of the Baathist regime and party. In effect, these generals have been covertly leading the resistance to the US occupation, and their return to power, at least partially, may be the only way to resolve the war in Iraq.

As we will all recall, Bush's Viceroy in Iraq, Paul Bremer, created the current situation by disbanding the old Iraqi Army, which fought off Iran for years, and banishing virtually every member of the Baath Party. That effectively disbanded the Iraqi Civil Service, because the only way to get a job under Saddam was to join the Baath Party. Since Iraq is a developing county with thin human resources, this left Iraq ungovernable, and we see the consequences now.

There have long been reports that our military has been talking to officers in the old Iraqi Army, without administration consent. This is a fascinating read:

5. The Nation Mag: Last Word On Effort To Depose Gov.Dean

The Nation Magazine also had a colorful piece that's the last word on the weird effort to depose Governor Dean as DNC chair. As Donny Fowler is quoted, "Asking Dean to step down now, after last week, is equivalent to asking Eisenhower to resign after the Normandy invasion."

Given the accolades Dean received for his performance, except for connected, self-dealing media consultants who want us to believe throwing truckloads of money at TV stations is a strategy, rather than the complete absence of a strategy, Dean's grassroots, bottom up organizing tactics have more credibility nationally than even at the height of his presidential run. It's a source of real hope for the future.

I'll paste the whole article below-- and thanks to Martha for this piece!

6. Friday Progressive Film Fest

Finally, the Rockhill Bakehouse Cafe in downtown Glens Falls continues it Friday Night Progressive Film Festival at 8pm with:

Dec 1 THE BIG ONE (1997) Michael Moore 91 min.
A film made during Michael Moore's speaking tour for his book, "Downsize This!". He exposes more than a few big businesses making record profits as they close down and flee the states for more fertile ground in Mexico abnd Asia. He gives out awards to those he feels are the greediest. The film is eminently watchable but the interview at film's end with Phil Knight, the CEO of Nike corporation, is priceless.

Thanks everyone! See you all soon,

Larry Dudley


The Odd Attack on Dean

[from the December 11, 2006 issue]

Amid Democratic postelection celebrating, there was a bizarre outburst: a malicious attack launched by James Carville against Howard Dean, chair of the Democratic National Committee, demanding his ouster. Carville's freakish initiative was bogus in every way. He has the same influence in party affairs as any other talking head on CNN--that is, none. In a year when the Democrats achieved their first real Congressional victory since 1992, Carville accused Dean of losing seats by not devoting more money to close House races.

The Ragin' Cajun was promptly stuffed. Don Fowler, former state party chair of South Carolina, observed: "Asking Dean to step down now, after last week, is equivalent to asking Eisenhower to resign after the Normandy invasion." Senator Harry Reid, the new majority leader, rallied to Dean too. "I didn't support his running for the chair of the DNC," Reid said. "I was wrong. He was right: I support his grassroots Democratic Party-building."

Carville's reckless foray, joined by pollster Stanley Greenberg, is worthy of comment only because the two are picking a fight that reflects the deep, potentially explosive fault-line in the party: the battle for control between old and new. Carville speaks for yesterday's failed politics--the Clinton years. Dean represents a more promising future with his aggressive efforts to rebuild a fifty-state party that grows from the grassroots up.

On the day after the election, Clintonistas-in-Waiting awoke to realize their wing of the party is not represented at the top of the party. For them, it seems, restoration of a Clinton White House--getting Senator Hillary Clinton nominated in 2008--needs inside influence. Harry Reid and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, despite their cultural differences, are both labor liberals. So why not take a shot at Dean and see what happens? Senator Clinton issued a limp disavowal, but if her side wants to start a fight, she can't have it both ways.

To get the hypocrisy, remember that Carville and Greenberg came to fame with Bill Clinton's 1992 "Putting People First" victory. The new President promptly turned right, and his White House eviscerated the DNC's promising coordination of state party campaigns. Clinton politics was all about him. Eight years later, Democrats had lost it all: White House, Senate, House.

In contrast, Dean got a lot of flak when he remarked that Democrats should start talking to everyone, including people in deeply red states. He made the same pitch when he ran for DNC chair in 2005 against the establishment and won.

Surprise--Dean has actually done what he promised. He gets funds to states, with the result that Democrats are speaking directly again to people in red areas, including through ads on Christian-right radio. This is politics for the long term. Nobody expects early conversion in Mississippi. But less than two years after Dean's launch, Democrats won control of the House and Senate for the first time since the Clinton team lost it in 1994.

The party does face a soul-searching reckoning, and this is a good fight to have. But it should not be determined by the typical push-and-shove of Beltway insiders arguing over tactics. The argument has to be more fundamental: Are Democrats ready to take on the big concerns they have so often finessed in this conservative era? Will they respond to the anger and discontents expressed by people in this election, or will they continue to play it safe?

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