Today, we also have heartwarming news from the ABQ Asylum Seeker relief effort, a call to action on Well’s Fargo’s investments in private prisons housing immigrants, and a selection of comments from readers on Retake’s reaction to Milan Simonich’s article on Ben Ray Lujan’s all too misleading campaign emails. The report on Asylum Seekers alone is worth clicking to read this post.
Donate to Retake Today! We don’t push hard for donations. Last week we posted this request, but got very little response. We get it; you get so many requests, we try to keep it low-key. But we blew through a good deal of funds in mounting our Roundhouse advocacy effort. Now we are launching a series of Town Halls throughout the state to meet with Action Alert team members and with legislators from other parts of the state. Funds are needed to pay for meeting rooms, flyers, buttons, and food and drink for meetings. And the cupboard is bare. Please make a contribution today. We need one time donations or even better, modest monthly donations to sustain this work. And thanks to all of you who have already donated generously.
Maggie Toulouse Oliver on Retake Our Democracy, at KSFR 101.1 FM. The show aired on Saturday, but it included 15 minutes of bonus coverage only available by podcast. So if you missed the show on Saturday or you want to check out the bonus 15 minutes, click here to hear the full interview with Maggie Toulouse Oliver.
Heartwarming ABQ Asylum Seeker Tale from Our Pal Javier Benavidez. Javier posted this tale on Facebook Sunday. At the end, we provide a link to where you can get info on how you can volunteer in ABQ and other ways you can support the relief efforts in ABQ, Las Cruces and El Paso. In ABQ, you can easily do what Javier and ABQ Interfaith did. Anyone interested in organizing a Retake car pool to ABQ in the next week or two?
From Javier: “If you’re in Burque and haven’t gotten to volunteer with the asylee/refugee welcome operation yet, it’s too good for the heart to miss. Today ABQ Interfaith took in about a hundred beautiful families, mostly from Honduras/Guatemala – about half children. So many smiles and good will – and kind of a sacred moment, thinking how generations to come might tell the story of the 3 week walk, then the 3-4 days in the cold mean detention, then the long bus ride with the bars and the armed guards – and then all those welcoming strangers with the good food and the hugs and the new clothes in that city with the funny name – Albuquerque, NM. One guy I got to process, here with his 8 year old daughter, told me he felt like he was in a dream. 🙏🏽 Got to hand a bunch of youngeons brand new soccer balls, thanks to Lawrence Espinoza and the Albuquerque Sol. This handsome young dude’s gonna be the next Ronaldo, watch. 🇭🇳 🇬🇹 🇺🇸” Click here for how you can do this, too.
I am on your email list and read your posts regularly. While I have my problems with Lujan, I also take issue with this post. I am sure you are on many candidates lists….they all work this way. With equally crazy crisis every few hours. Heinrich was no different when he ran. What I also might point out is, I have signed up a few times for Lujan’s newsletter, which I assume is his email list, and have never gotten anything. So no fundraising emails either. I just wonder how organized he and his staff are. I do appreciate all your efforts.
Click here to get to Retake Our Democracy’s Events and Actions page which includes events that are updated regularly. Or at least we try. The page includes info on a great film on 1948 Palestine Creation and Catastrophe screening Tuesday night and on our PNM Shareholders campaign where you get to attend their annual shareholders meeting and ask the PNM CEO embarrassing questions in front of the shareholders. Great fun.
Readers Comment on Saturday’s Post on Ben Ray’s Annoying Fundraising Emails: Typical politics? Evidence of Important Character Flaw? Or Both?
Last Saturday, I posted a blog covering Milan Simonich’s pretty strong article about Ben Ray Lujan’s daily and highly annoying fundraising email. A link to that post can be found at the end of this post. But immediately below is a series of reader comments that provide an interesting conversation about Ben Ray and the sad devolution of political communication. First this from Ann Marie:
I am on your email list and read your posts regularly. While I have my problems with Lujan, I also take issue with this post. I am sure you are on many candidates lists….they all work this way. With equally crazy crisis every few hours. Heinrich was no different when he ran. What I also might point out is, I have signed up a few times for Lujan’s newsletter, which I assume is his email list, and have never gotten anything. So no fundraising emails either. I just wonder how organized he and his staff are. I do appreciate all your efforts.” Ann Marie
And then from David Thompson, from our Retake Leadership Team”
I agree with Ann Marie. While I don’t like this kind of email, many (if not most) of the fund-raising emails I get (and since we’ve given to a lot of candidates over the years, we get loads of emails) are at least deceptive, if perhaps not blatantly so. They turn me off – I wonder how effective they really are, but they keep coming, so perhaps people respond to this kind of stuff. I’ve also noticed that establishment candidates and front-runners (often the same, of course) rarely mention that they are opposed in a primary – they often put themselves forward as if it’s a foregone conclusion. So in this Ben Ray is also, unfortunately, not alone.” David Thompson
And lastly this from Bill Sortino:
We are essentially on the same page in our thinking if we subscribe to Retake so I am not being critical in my response to your post. I just want to reiterate, what Paul stated just above your post, and that is we are trying to actually change this very system that has led our country into the veritable gutter of political pay to play and outright lying. To do that we must first clean up our own house and that means being honest about those Democrats who are a part of or behave as if they were a part of this broken system, because it is “just” the way everyone does it.
That is what we are facing on every area of our inability to govern and why it is so important to call out these politicians and hold them accountable. We reject climate change, which is destroying our earth and will continue to kill millions across the globe in the coming years, some using the excuse that if China did more then we would, but we will not start because they won’t. Well, that argument translates into I am willing to potentially kill my grand children because I will not change until you do, much like a playground argument. Our problems are real and we all need to force those in power to change this system or else we all lose.” Bill Sortino
I think that Bill makes my point. No, while what BRL does is fairly extreme, it is not entirely out of the norm. But that is exactly the problem and we need to call out this behavior for what it is misleading, lacking substance and manipulative. We want more from our leaders. Where is the email that says: “I’ve asked my staff to take a deep look at the thorny issue of Medicare for All and together we’ve developed a comparison of the three most prominent plans being considered in Washington. I’d like your input.” No $5, $10, $20 options, just a white paper and survey that engages constituents in a serious manner. That just doesn’t happen. And that was my central point. But beyond that, the tone struck by Lujan is dismissive of Toulouse Oliver and of the primary itself as if he has been anointed as our candidate and there is choice his constituents face in June, just November. And the use of fake facts (that McConnell has raised funds just to defeat him) is simply untrue and I think we’ve all had more than enough of self inflated false truths being used to manipulate voters. It may be common place, but that is what is wrong with political discourse today.
A Look Back at Last Week’s Posts
Not sure what happened, but we had far fewer readers than usual for the first two posts below and both are important, as they cover climate change from a national and then a state perspective.
One Million Species Face Immanent Extinction & the Media Doesn’t Seem to Care
This was an important post as the mainstream media is simply not covering climate change with anything the depth it deserves. But maybe they know something, as this post had the lowest open rate for any post we’ve published in over six months. It is an important read. The IPBES report points to still more evidence of encroaching disaster. Today’s posts reviews this report and puts it in local, state and national context. Quite by chance, I found a Truthout report by Dahr Jamail. The post closes with 2 citations and a link to Jamail’s full article—powerful. Also, a reminder Thursday night, Retake is holding an Input and Strategy Session,details follow. Click here to read the full post.
We Have 12 Years to Face Down Climate Change and with Democrats Controlling All NM Branches of Gov’t, We Got Zero Down on Climate Change in 2019 Roundhouse Session
We are nearing completion of the 2019 Legislative Report Card. While we had much to celebrate, we compromised far too much to corporate interests in other areas..Tonight Retake seeks your input and ideas to inform how we move forward and ensure that in 2020 and 2021, we get far more done. 12 years and the clock is ticking. The post includes excerpts from the first draft of the Executive Summary of the 2019 Roundhouse Report Card, so if you want a preview of the Report Card to be published within ten days, check it out. Also, a link to new info on how to help Asylum Seekers children. Click here to read the full post.
Ben Ray Lujan Slammed for Deception + A Report on Packed Retake Input and Strategy Session, A Plan for 2019-20 is Emerging
Saturday, May 11. We had 12 RSVPs, but 47 folks showed up and were brimming with enthusiasm at Thursday’s meeting. Next meeting: June 5, 6:30-8:30pm. Also, Milan Simonich absolutely nailed Rep. Lujan for his fundraising emails, which are clearly annoying, but also apparently riddled with lies. WE don’t think what BRL is doing with his campaign emails is illegal, but they are somewhat unethical and tell us more about him as a candidate than perhaps he realizes. We summarize Simonich’s piece and provide a link. Notice of Maggie Toulouse Oliver on Retake on KSFR. Click here to review the full post. There were a goodly number of reader comments on this post, as described above. So, if you missed it, now’s your chance.
Paul & Roxanne