If the Regulatory Process is Rigged (It Is), What Next? Part III

The CELDF has been training communities for decades to fight the rigged regulatory process. We have WIPP, LANL, Holtec, Produced Water, & Mining regulatory processes in NM: Time to figure out this rigged system.

In brief, three events for you to consider before we offer a primer on the regulatory process followed by a series of short video outlining how CELDF fights to institute rights of nature in local and state law, how they train grassroots activists to understand and work effectively within the regulatory process. The videos are very informative and very pertinent to our current NM challenges with WIPP, Holtec, LANL, produced water and mining. If the system is rigged, we need to discover how to work that rigged system to protect our future.

Please RSVP. It really helps us prepare. RetakeResponse@gmail.com. So easy, so helpful.

2020 Legislative Session Preview

How to successfully advocate for the issues you believe in! Tuesday, Oct. 29, 6:30 pm- 8:30 pm, Center for Progress & Justice, 1420 Cerrillos Rd., Santa Fe.  Retake Our Democracy will host a panel discussion with nonprofit advocacy experts to help prepare you for the 2020 Legislative Session. Panelists include:

  • Bill Jordan, Government Relations Officer, NM Voices for Children
  • Mary Feldblum, Executive Director, Health Security for New Mexicans Campaign
  • Paul Haidle, JD, Senior Policy Strategist, A.C.L.U.
  • Elaine Sullivan, Board President, Alliance for Local Economic Prosperity (public banking)
  • Fred Nathan, Executive Director, Think New Mexico

Moderator, Paul Gibson, Co-Founder, Retake Our Democracy

Discussion will focus on policies related to child welfare, healthcare, civil rights, abortion decriminalization, public banking, tuition-free college, early childhood funding, and how grassroots advocates can best support their legislative priorities. RSVP by Oct 28 to retakeresponse@gmail.com. Panel will be live-streamed via the Retake Our Democracy Facebook page. For more details and to RSVP on Facebook, click here.

Youth United for Climate Crisis Action: Call to Action Protesting the Governor’s Non-Response to YUCCA Demands

October 30, 4pm. Roundhouse Rotunda. Youth from YUCCA will update you on the status of their actions, including their plans to escalate direct action to insist upon a dialogue with the Governor. At the close of the protest, some of YUCCA youth and supporters will march to the public hearing on produced water being held at 6pm. We’ve been discussing how we need to escalate tactics. Escalation now begins. Come to find out what YUCCA has planned.

Produced Water Hearing Schedule

For background information on the reason for the hearing and how to submit written comment, please click here.

  • SANTA FE: Wednesday, Oct 30, 6pm-8:30pm, St. Francis Auditorium, 107 West Palace Ave., Santa Fe
  • CARLSBAD: Thursday, Nov. 14, 6pm-8:30pm, Pecos River Village Conference Center, Carousel House 711 Muscatel Ave., Carlsbad
  • FARMINGTON: Tuesday, Nov. 19, 6pm-8:30pm, San Juan College Little Theatre, 4601 College Blvd., Farmington
  • LAS CRUCESMonday, November 25, 6pm-8:30pm, New Mexico Farm & Ranch Heritage Museum, Ventana Room, 4100 Dripping Springs Rd. Las Cruces. The agenda for each meeting is as follows:
  • 5:00 pm Doors open
  • 6-6:45 pm Presentation by NMED, EMNRD and OSE
  • 6:45-7:15 pm Question-and-answer session
  • 7:15-7:30 pm Break
  • 7:30-8:30 pm Public input session 

The Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund: Common Sense Community Rights Organizing

Roxanne discovered the Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund, or rather, she finally turned to it despite having been borderline hounded by one of Retake’s longest standing supporters, Eduardo Krasilovsky. For months, perhaps years, Eduardo has said we need to invite the CELDF’s Democracy School to come train our leadership. Mission accomplished. It sunk in. Roxanne has read a bunch of their material, as now have I and we have reached out to CELDF to schedule training. To find out why, read on as we provide an excerpt to Common Sense, the CELDF primer on Community Rights Organizing. Light on the read, as today we provide mostly video.

One caveat. We heard last night from valued allies that CELDF worked in Mora County on a fracking ban and that the way the process was managed left the community badly divided. We have expressed wariness about national organizations coming to NM for fear that they would not really understand the culture. Most recently we raised this concern when the City of Santa Fe bipassed local options and hired a firm from Philadelphia to manage its community engagement process for the Midtown Project.

We know that CELDF has operated throughout the world very effectively and that they have also operated in NM in the past and so we will do due diligence before we ask for a Democracy School training. But regardless of whether we want to bring them in for a training, the information and concepts introduced below are very instructive and germane to our situation.

From Common Sense:

You follow the rules by attending your local government meetings and letting your elected know that you don’t want environmental harms such as fracking, or social justice harms such as unfair elections. You attend the public permit hearing (if there is one) to voice your concerns and explain why it is so important to protect your municipality. Or you attend a Board of Elections meeting to share your concerns about unfair elections. Perhaps you even gather signatures and submit them to your local government, state environmental agency, Board of Elections, or your state representatives.

But somehow, your community’s right to say “no” still is not recognized. Your elected officials tell you that their hands are tied, while the folks running the hearing thank you for your testimony, and then issue the permit anyway. Or the Board of Elections assures you that electronic voting machines are safe or that there is nothing they can do about outside money influencing elections. And all those signatures? They get recorded as a matter of record and are then disregarded.
What’s going on?
We examine exactly what is going on in Common Sense. You’re facing:

  • A system of laws that authorize and protect inherently unsustainable activities such as fracking, factory farming, and GMOs; electronic voting machines and outside funds in local elections; unjust immigration raids and family separation; and innumerable other environmental, social, and political practices causing harm
  • Corporations and government that are working hand-in-hand to define and enforce these laws, ensuring endless growth, extraction,  development and suppression; and
  • A legal structure, including key legal doctrines such as corporate constitutional “rights” and state preemption, that both corporations and government wield to override community decision-making and environmental protection.

Click here to read Common Sense. It lays out in detail the ways in which the regulatory process is an extension of British common law designed explicitly to protect the aristocracy and then the white land owners who framed our Constitution. Common Sense offers examples of egregious regulatory malfeasance and then outlines how their training can help local activists work more effectively in a rigged system.

CELDF offers a two day training to groups of 25 individuals who work as leaders in local environmental activism. Retake has initiated contact with CELDF, will schedule this training and will invite activists statewide to participate in the training. But for now, please forge on as CELDF has a range of tremendous video that outlines the challenge and the solution. Click here to read more about the Democracy School.

A Trailer on the Tremendous Film: We the People

This provides an excellent introduction to CELDF and its reason for being.

The Rights of Nature: CELDF’s Legal Foundation

This is an excellent 13 minute orientation to just exactly how CELDF uses the law and the Rights of Nature as a legal tool to protect our land, air and water.

The Democracy School: An In-Depth Look at the Training Offered by CELDF

Here you will get a thorough description of how our legal system has been carefully crafted to support the rights of the landed and the history of resistance that has almost required breaking immoral laws and regulations if we are to adhere to the higher principle of justice. Very interesting.

2 thoughts on “If the Regulatory Process is Rigged (It Is), What Next? Part III

  1. All of this is great stuff Paul. However, the real rigging (as you know) rests with those Democratic Senators and Representatives that are either being paid off or just found a way to last. How do we force the leader of the House and the leader of the Senate to become allies of the people by forcing these men off chaired positions? Until NM can count a democratic vote on major legislation from every elected democrat, nothing can actually change. Until people like Egolf are somehow removed because of oil and gas conflict of interest, how can New Mexicans get relief on the one hand and better returns on the other? These are the same issues facing the Nation in Washington. But, as a State, we have the capability to deal with these issues if the Governor and those leaders who care join together to force these fake democrats out!

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