[ronpaul-36] Ron Paul/Campaign for Liberty 3/16/09 Meeting Recap / Police Commission hearing Thursday

I missed the first hour or so of the meeting, so I won't try to give
a full account of what went on, but it was good to see that many of
those who were active in the Ron Paul campaign are still motivated to
work for liberty. I was especially impressed by Aaron, who estimated
that he is burning and distributing like 100 DVDs a week. Way to go!
John Dennis did a good job facilitating. We had some interesting
discussion around possible participation in an anti-war rally being
organized by the left-wing group A.N.S.W.E.R., whose leadership is
hostile to Ron Paul and our movement (John and Jun Dam went to an
organizing meeting and were told Ron Paul is racist, we only care
about property rights, etc.), but the participants in whose events may
be more open to the message of liberty.

  I expressed the concern that the national leadership of Campaign for
Liberty is failing to build on the grassroots DIY spirit that
characterized the best of the "Ron Paul rEVOLution" last year, but is
instead going the opposite route of just another old-style, top-down
political organization. This was in part based on a couple fundraising
calls I got from them about a week ago, where the girl who called was
obviously reading from a script, and then there was a recorded message
from C4L head John Tate, neither of which seemed to be about
encouraging bottom-up activism. Hopefully my impressions are not
reflective of what is going on, and the campaign will manifest itself
as more member/activist-driven in the near future.

  We also discussed whether it would be a good idea to allow open
posting to this email list. I appeared to be in the minority of those
who spoke up in feeling this would be a good thing, as most expressed
fears that there would be too many emails, or that many of the
messages would be of dubious quality, and it would drive people away
from the group. These are certainly valid concerns, but it's also my
experience that making groups more participatory tends to encourage
more involvement. One guy (forget his name) said that it's possible to
allow open posting to the message board, and to have new messages
posted there sent directly as emails to those who want to be part of
the discussion. As other possible ways of encouraging participation
and making our group more bottom-up, I suggested the possibilities of
having rotating leadership, and/or a large decision-making council
rather than a few officers, so that a larger number of people feel
invested and empowered, and get to develop their leadership skills,
rather than creating a situation where a small number of people at the
top run the show.

  The Tea Party tax protest events sound promising. With the economy in
the toilet and trillions of dollars wasted bailing out big businesses
that made bad decisions, there should be growing opposition to raising
taxes. There are apparently a group or groups planning local events
for both April 15 and July 4. I believe the anti-war rally is March
20th, and that Jun is the point person for this.

  As the meeting was breaking up, I mentioned that there is a Board of
Supervisors Rules Committee hearing this Thursday at 10:00 a.m. in
City Hall Room 263 to appoint a successor to David Campos on the
Police Commission (his seat was left vacant when he was elected to the
Board last November). I have endorsed John Caldera, one of the 9 or so
candidates seeking the position, and urge others to support him. Like
David, John is a strong advocate of civil liberties and police
accountability, and I think he has the right values for this job --
supporting the decriminalization of marijuana and prostitution,
supporting increased enforcement powers for the mostly toothless
Office of Citizen Complaints, opposing civil asset forfeiture, etc.
John currently serves on the city's Veterans Affairs Commission and
told me that he has a 100% attendance record. If you can make it out
Thursday morning, please do so; he expects a number of his supporters
will be present, and a few more bodies at a hearing appointment like
this can make a difference.

Love & Liberty,
        ((( starchild )))

Hi Starchild,

Thank you for posting this! I was still sick, and did not attend the meeting. You say the Tea Party Tax protest seem promising. Did you all discuss details at the meeting? LPSF voted at the last meeting to have our usual Tax Day event at the Montgomery BART station; so I am wondering what/where/when the Tea Party will be.

Thanks again.