Trump Unhinged, an International Disaster in the Making, Plus a Look at Last Week and Forward to the Legislature

Monday posts are often a hodge podge. So, today, we offer commentary on Trump’s mental dissolve, news on an effective letter writing campaign in Georgia, opportunities for involvement in the 2021 legislative session & more.

Trump Lunacy:
A Tragicomedy with Serious Potential Implications

Throughout the election and post-election time frames, the news was frantic and almost always stressful. Despite Trump’s reluctance to accept reality and his ongoing threats and tyrades, it is quite apparent that despite his rants, the election will be certified and Trump will be escorted from the White House on January 20. At this point, his meandering claims are more tragicomedic than frightening. Saturday, he indicated that he would indeed leave the White House, but only if Biden proved where he got those 80 million votes. Sunday, on Fox he continued his claims to have won easily, that the election was the greatest fraud in history and that leaders throughout the world have been calling to offer congratulations on his re-election. While “tragicomedic” seems to apply, there is good reason to be fearful.

There are still 51 days until January 20 and while his false claims of election fraud are falling on deaf ears, he may well be veering US foreign policy in dangerous directions. It is highly likely that Israel was responsible for the assassination of Mohsen Fakhrizadeh Mahabadi, the Iranian scientist in charge of Iran’s nuclear program. It is inconceivable that the US was not briefed on this action before it was taken, perhaps a reason that Trump has prevented Biden from seeing the daily presidential briefing. Iran has promised revenge for the second assassination they’ve experienced in the past year. Hang on, 51 days to go.

Roundhouse 2021 Advocacy Begins Tuesday:
Join Us In Conversation with Democratic Party Leadership

Tuesday, Dec. 1, 6:30 – 8 pm. Election Debrief and 2021 Legislative Agenda Review with Senate Floor Leader Peter Wirth and Speaker of the House Brian Egolf. We will discuss how the primaries and the general election have altered the Democratic caucuses in the House and Senate and the impact that a Covid-limited session might have upon our chances for getting transformational legislation passed in 2021. We will ask Speaker Egolf and Sen. Wirth their views on the prospects for bills like the Health Security Act, Public Banking, the Green Amendment and more. We will have 60 minutes of questions gleaned from conversations with allies and then open things up to all on the zoom. This Zoom room is filling up very quickly and you MUST register.

Click to register for this Zoominar.


Retake Legislative Strategy: What You Need to Know

Even though we just finished Thanksgiving weekend, we’ve been working to form and expand teams in Senate District’s held by Democrat Senators. We have 20 of 27 teams now functioning with coordinators and members. We are working to expand those teams in anticipation of convening Zoom conversations with all Democrat Senators and their constituents throughout December. Even if you do not want to be a District Coordinator, you can be part of a team and share your views with your Senator and you can help us expand these teams by asking people you know who might be interested in having conversation with their Senator, too.

We will be staging a Zoom conversation on Friday, Dec 4 from 3:30-4:30 to assess our progress, discuss our strategy, and plan how to initiate dialog with our Senators. Below are important links to our strategy, the bills we support and to register for the Zoom organizing meeting. If you want to find out more about the Legislative Strategy and if you might want to join the effort.

Write us at RetakeResponse @gmail.com and let us know if you are interested in being a member of a district team or being a coordinator. We especially need coordinators for Senators Bill Tallman, Joseph Cervantes, Michael Padilla, George Muñoz, Shannon Pinto, Linda Lopez, Jeff Steinborn and Carrie Hamblen.

Retake Conversation, On KSFR 101.1 FM: Roxanne Barber and Paul Gibson Outline the 2021 Retake Legislative Strategy and the 15 Transformational Bills We Plan to Support. Roxanne and I bantered about how Retake developed its 2021 legislative strategy and the list of bills we will be supporting, as well as talking about the change in the Senate that should make bills passage far easier in that chamber. Click here to view the 40 minute discussion.


News in Briefs: Between the election and Covid, it seems that the looming climate catastrophe has slipped from civic discourse. But these three NIB highlight three very different approaches to addressing climate. The first two are local proactive responses to global warming, one from Swinomish tribe of northwest Washington and the other from across the globe in Luxembourg where the “Transition” movement was born. Both these local efforts have been replicated broadly. Roxanne and I participated in a two-day Transition ABQ convening several years ago. If anyone knows if that group is still up and running, it would be good to find out what they are up to. The last NIB focuses on how throughout the election run up, youth have been deploying similar youth-driven protest strategies first employed prior to the civil war, an interesting piece.


An Easy Way To Support the Dems in the Georgia Runoffs:
35 Days & Counting

Many of you will remember Morty & Carol Simon/Oppenheimer, longtime Santa Fe advocates now living in Washington, D.C. but also still engaging others to be active. Some time ago, I shared info on their support for Working America’s letter writing campaign and Sunday they sent me an update. Read on. More importantly, once done, Write On!

During Thanksgiving week, those of you writing letters to Georgia have more than doubled, from 1,706 to 3,708. You are already writing half of the 956,000 letters we want to send to Georgia.

We gain 5 votes for every 100 letters, because these letters break through the political noise (it’s a roar in Georgia). Our testing shows a greater effect in moving these voters to Democrats than any partisan message we could write.

We send personalized letters to apolitical voters who tune out political messages.  That is why our letters are about health care and the pandemic. We make a personal connection and offer useful resources about COVID testing locations, emergency services, and unemployment benefits. 

We are writing to regular voters – black, brown, and white working class. They do not watch cable TV. They live in every county in Georgia. Because they are not interested in politics, they will make up their minds at the last minute.

The date to mail our letters is Wednesday, Dec. 23rd. We are monitoring mail delivery throughout the country. By mailing on the 23rd, your letters and postcards will be in folks’ hands at the right time to maximize their impact. 

Keep up the great work!!

Want to learn more about Working America? Listen to a presentation to Swing Left Greater Boston by Karen Nussbaum, Lora Jo Foo, and Fran Schreiberg. Karen is the founder of Working America, as well as 9 to 5 and a friend of Morty & Carol. Click here.


A Look Back At
a Reasonably Calm Week

Months ago, I stated that Retake would reduce its posts to three times a week. Well, 10-12 weeks later, I actually restrained myself and limited myself to just three posts and as a result was able to get 2/3 of the way through a great Jonathan Franzen novel. If you missed either the Wednesday or Friday posts, they are both worth your time, especially the Friday post as it wove together a number of themes emphasized in Retake posts over the years and ended with a clear articulation of what we need to reverse our retreat from FDR idealism. Read on!

Election Update: GOP Voters Urged to Boycott Runoffs…
by Republicans, plus other Election News & Last Week’s Posts

Monday, November 23. After some election updates and New Mexico news updates, we offer summaries and links to last week’s posts (Nov 17-23) and there are at least two that are definitely worth your time, especially the piece on how since its inception, the Supreme Court has done the oligarchy’s work and then offers a plan for fixing the Court Onward as we march toward the end of 2020 and just perhaps better times.

Click here to read any of the four posts from the prior week.


Thanksgiving On Our Minds: What We are Thankful For, Plus a Report on Yesterday’s Special Legislative Session

Wednesday, November 25. Roxanne and I offered thoughts on what we are thankful for and what we mourn. We also suggested ways to deepen the Thanksgiving conversation, whether held via zoom or across the table and we closed with a powerful piece offered by our allies from TEWA.

The link at the end of the TEWA note is well worth your time. It could also be something you send to those with whom you are sharing your feast in person or via Zoom. It is a deeply personal reflection on what we, as a people, as a nation, must begin to accept, grapple with and address: we have been and remain the most powerful nation on earth and to a shameful degree have used that power violently and to oppress or coerce those who are less powerful than we are.

Click here to read the full post.


Why We Need a National Strategy to Retake Our Democracy &
Our Future and Why There is Hope

Friday, November 27. We examined how we landed in a political environment so resistant to justice, so incapable of implementing our priorities, and what it has cost us. We then trace a path to a more just nation where essential workers matter more than Wall St. profit. The post included links to a series of prior Retake publications that traced the long, slow retreat from FDR idealism and belief in the importance of government initiatives, to the present, where any government action taken to support working people is immediately labelled “socialism.”

This is a post that I think people should save and return to, as to read through all the linked articles would take a significant amount of time, but also puts a good deal of what we are experiencing today into historic context.

Click here to read the full post.

In solidarity and hope,

Paul & Roxanne



Categories: Local-State Government & Legislation

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3 replies

  1. Something to learn from Nancy Ray Gun when it comes to obeying the orders of an infantile vengeance addict – just say no.

    All actions have consequences, and karma never misses the opportunity to create chain reactions that engage the innocent. Another thing about karma, is usually fosters exponential growth, using any pathway available.

    Flood the Pentagon and the other martialists in govt. with communications and state, unequivocally, that we expect any order to be refused related to attacking Iran.

    1970 – Question authority.
    2020 – Defy authority.

    Mick Nickel

  2. No, the Transition Movement in NM has not been active for some years. There are some folks at UNM-ABQ trying to stir some interest, but it seems fragile. Lots of new avenues to follow and incorporate into a NM Resilience Movement. Its time. Some of the priority bills this session will assist with this: Health Security Act, State Bank, Green Amendment.

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