Wednesday, November 30, 2016

What does it mean to be Progressive?

Whenever I use the word Progressive, I have some people agree with me, and others looking confused or frustrated. It's easy to understand why. Progressive is a very subjective word, with multiple meanings coming from individuals and situations. Wikipedia has this definition:

"Progressivism is a philosophy based on the Idea of Progress, which asserts that advancement in science, technology, economic development, and social organization are vital to improve the human condition."

I've been reading about and participating in progressive politics for a few decades now, both in and out of the Democratic Party. This is my framing and it consists of four parts.

Grassroots, People-Powered Democracy

If a decision is being made on any level of government that affects you, your voice should be heard on that issue. What we need in this country and around the world is a way for people to get directly involved in the way our government operates. Many opportunities exist now, but they are hidden behind a wall of secrecy and only the hard-core activists seem to be able to break through. We have to make the process of electoral, issue based and identity based politics transparent and open so everyone can get involved, however that works for the individual.

The Concept of WE

The Earth is a single environment. Everything that affects individuals affects groups, and the larger the subject, the larger the group that is affected. I'm tired of hearing people describe the world in terms of 'us versus them'. We're all on this planet together, and the more we understand that, the better we will be able to create a world that works for everyone. How can we get a better understanding of how everyone is linked together, and that something affecting one affects us all?

Understanding the Past

Where do our problems come from? How do they relate to each other? If we search for an understanding of our past mistakes, we gain a better understanding of how not to repeat them. Maybe we can even solve two problems with the same action. Critical Thinking requires that we have an understanding of the foundations we stand on before we start building.

Looking to the Future

It's not enough anymore to think and act for the moment. In the big picture, we are creating the world of the future by our actions today. I'm concerned about how my children are growing up, but I'm just as concerned about the kind of world their grandchildren will be living in. We should grant them the power to turn that world into whatever they wish it to be, with clean air and water, energy resources to explore their dreams, a peaceful world where people talk instead of fight with each other. What can we do now, either big decisions or small actions, that can help to create that world of opportunity?

What is your definition? What is your framing?

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

PCOs and friends, I need your endorsement.

Campaigns are not won by the candidate.  Campaigns are won by the community that supports that candidate.

I'm running for King County State Committee Man to represent the Democrats in King County, and I need your help to win this race.  Please let me know that you support my efforts to build a strong community in order to help heal our world.  If you are an old friend who has been with me through this entire journey, I'd love to hear from you.  Let's talk about history, enjoy some stories and plan for the future.  If you are new to the party, I welcome you with open arms and an open heart.  Please tell me your dreams and ask questions about how we can do this together.

There are 1,144 PCOs in King County, and I'm trying to reach out to each and every one.  I have worked with and met with elected officials, movement leaders and party leaders all across the state and around the country.  Please help me build this community by making connections with each other as we move forward.

You can endorse me on my campaign page, you can send me an email that I can share, or you can send me a message.  I hope to hear from you.

A longer tunnel

Welcome to the KCDCC!

Dear Elected PCOs

My name is Chad Lupkes, and I would like your consideration at the December 4th reorganization meeting of the King County Democraic Central Committee for the position of State Committee, identifying as Male.  I know we have multiple people interested in this position, and I welcome the vigorous discussion that I hope will occur in just two and half short weeks.

I have been working within and around the King County Democrats and the state party for well over a decade now.  I could go over that history in detail, but I've already written about it extensively when I ran for National Delegate for Bernie Sanders at the May 21st CD Caucus.  I could also give an detailed description of what I want to do on the State Committee, but I've already written about that as well.  In fact, I write a lot, and most of it comes out as a firehose of rants and opinions and links and forwards on my Facebook page.  If I'm not already connected with you on social media, expect a connection request.  If we are connected, expect more from me.  I'm not running for a "leadership" position, because I see the State Committee as a representative position.  And what elected officials, both government and party, need to be is Responsible, Representative, and Responsive.  
Just over the last year, I have
  • Launched and helped maintain social media infrastructure for Bernie Sanders.
  • Been a Delegate at every stage of the 2016 Caucus cycle, up to and including the National Convention.
  • Kept contact with the Delegates from Washington and around the country.
  • Encouraged progressives to file for PCO and become more involved in the Democratic Party.  #DemEnter or Bust.
  • Helped with GOTV and Party events around the state, from Seattle to Spokane to Vancouver.
I joined the party in 2003 hunting the smoke filled rooms in order to open them up.  I either didn't find them, or found them to be a very different thing than I expected.  No door has been closed, so far.  If a decision is going to be made, I will be talking about that decision and hearing feedback.  I know who will be making those decisions, and I have ideas about how to influence them.  I know how to help people become the decision makers.  The State Committee members represent their County Central Committees or their Legislative District organizations.  So I will represent you, while you represent your precincts and the voters in your precincts.  We also have several thousand additional precincts to fill with Appointed PCOs between now and 2018.  I am an organizer at heart, especially on social media.  It is what I have always done, and will continue to do locally, at the state level and nationally.  I also have plans and dreams to build on what I have done over the last decade in order to support progressive candidates all over the state, push our progressive agenda into all levels of government, build our party stronger than we have ever seen it before, and strengthen our communities in ways that we have not seen before, or at least not for a very long time.

Connect with me on Facebook.  If we are not already connected, send me a private message so I can approve it quickly.  I'm well over 4,000 connections, and Facebook has a limit of 5k so I'm being careful at this point to make sure that I can directly connect to the people I need to communicate with.  I want to connect with you and hear from you.

Follow me on Twitter at @chadlupkes, and let's use this tool to amplify our conversations.  I don't use Twitter as much as Facebook, but if it exists in the Social Mediaverse, I'm there somewhere.
As an Elected PCO, you will vote on December 4th for the Officers of the King County Democratic Central Committee. The meeting will be at 12pm / Noon at this union hall:

IAM Machnists Hall - Seattle
9125 15th Place South
Seattle, WA 98108

Ask me questions. If I don't know the answer, I will help you find the answers.  I've been dedicated from the very start to engage, inspire, educate and empower.  That won't change.

Many of you already know me from the work that I've done in the party and during the 2016 Presidential Primary.  I was the insider trying to bring new people in.  I was the establishment welcoming new voices.  I tried my best to walk the fence, because I was waiting and hoping that the fence would no longer be necessary.  I didn't want to make enemies on either side, because that makes the work harder.  Now the election results have knocked that fence down by force and we have to build bridges, not burn them.
We do have a longer tunnel ahead of us.  And there will be turns and strange noises on the tracks.  But the light at the end of the tunnel is still there.  I know it is.  It's up to us to make sure that light doesn't get turned off.


Chad Lupkes
PCO, SEA 46-2324