What We are Reading & Watching to Rethink Our Democracy

What We are Reading

Seminal Pieces

  • Less is More, by Jason Hickel. If you want to get a full grasp of what the problem is and what we are trying to achieve, this is the absolute best place to go. A brilliant book, that puts the movement to advance bold change in historical context and then outlines the kinds of bold change that is needed and possible. We are conducting a book club for this book on Less is More on June 8 at 6pm. Even if you do not read the book, you will benefit from this discussion, but quite obviously you will get more out of this and contribute more thoughtfully if you have read the book. We suggest purchasing this through your local book store, not Amazon. Click here to register.
  • Covid-19 and 21st Century Public Ownership, The Democracy Collaborative. In only 12 pages, TDC makes the case for ending neoliberalism, reversing privatization, expanding the role of government, and offering concrete initiatives and policies that can take us to a new, more equitable and more sustainable place. Click here to review.
  • Our History is the Future, Nick Estes. In a deeply personal manner, Estes layd out the sordid history of Americas colonization of indigenous peoples and then goes one step further describing how the indigenous approach to stewardship of land, air and water and their kinship with all living things is the only way to avoid extinction. A very powerful book.
  • Indigenous Approach to Community Wealth Building: A Lakota Translation, by Stephanie Gutierrez, The Democracy Collaborative. Click here to review. The importance of this piece is in the participatory process used to identify and prioritize work in indigenous communities. The Learning Lab model is something directly germane to how Rethink could develop its education work. Click here to review.
  • From The International Centre on Policy Advocacy: “An Essential Guide to Writing Policy Briefs.” Roxanne is deeply into this and has indicated that it provides excellent guidance not just on content, but formatting, branding and language choice. Click here to review.

Models & Initiatives

What We are Watching

Seminal Video

Imperialism & Capitalism in 2-Minutes.

This video outlines in very clear strokes exactly how the banking system, World Bank, International Money Fund and multinational corporations conspire to essentially enslave 3rd world nations. This is how we enjoy cheap products and why so many jobs are being exported. Very good to share with friends who somehow don’t know this.

Corruption is Legal in America

This is a five minute video that depicts how politicians really do not care at all what you think or want. The video outlines how the worst idea ever, if supported by the 1%, has a better chance of becoming law than the best idea ever, if it is opposed by the 1%. Some stunning data here.

Wealth Inequality in America. 6m23s.

This video has been viewed almost 20 million times. It so clearly and graphically depicts the massive migration of wealth from the middle class and the poor to the wealthy. There are a few moments where your jaw will drop even if think you understand that this migration has occurred. Worth sharing with those who think America’s economy works for all of us. Click here.

Less is More with Jason Hickel

As promised, we provide two videos from Jason Hickel. The first 12 minutes and then a second extending for 28 minutes. Together they lay out the reasons why De-Growth is our only path to a just transition and what a de-growth future could look like.

The second video follows just a few seconds after the first talk ends. Hickel’s de-growth economy would not create lives lived in austerity, but rather lives lived in balance with our earth and our own instincts. Instead of working 60 hours a week, we would work 20-30 hours a week, affordable through the drastic redistribution of our wealth and the income generated by our work. Watch on!

We offer three videos from The Red Nation and their newly published Red Deal. The first is the Democracy Now! 12 minute piece on the Red Deal in dialog with Red Nation leaders. Democracy Now offered a 32 minute Part II conversation with Red Nation leadership. That is our second video. Finally, we offer a link to the flat out amazing 90 minute panel discussion that aired on Facebook last Friday where five Red Nation leaders outlined the Red Deal, how it differs from and goes beyond the Green New Deal and the reasons why our survival depends upon our adoption of something very like The Red Deal. These video are very worth your time.

Click here to watch the 32 minute Part II Interview of Melanie Yazzie and Uahikea Maile

Click here to watch the full 90 minute webinar from Red Nation. It begins at 1 Minute 30 Seconds.

Using Morale Language to Frame Arguments. This is a tremendous video on how to frame your argument in moral and ethical terms to achieve the greatest impact.  The video focuses on conversations around climate change, but the principles apply to discussions related to any form of political discussion. Very useful video for people who want to canvass, speak at a City Council meeting, post on Facebook, or write a letter to the editor.

Developing the Capacity for Empathy A very insightful, 3-minute video on the importance of being able to embrace another’s perspective and point of view. You don’t have to share the view, you need to hear it and appreciate from whence it sprang. Very instructive. Click here.

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