Saturday, December 24, 2016

Once more unto the breach, dear friends

As we struggle with an effective way forward there are critical areas I will be working to address -and am happy to collaborate with all that believe as I do (regardless of political ideology) -that the incoming Executive Branch represents a clear and present danger to America and the world.

1. Protect and defend: When I think of our most vulnerable -I think of the impoverished, people of color, undocumented workers, refugees, Muslims, indigenous people and the LGBTQ community. I must now add a whole new sector of people -scientists. I had some recent discussions with people on the research edge -working to solve horrific disease such as ALS and Parkinson's or addressing catastrophic climate change. They are now under very real threat of being fired, ostracized or worse -without the protection they once had by our Federal government. These are people we should celebrate as heroes. Whether you are a Democrat, Republican -regardless -these brave men and women are trying to ease human suffering, improve our quality of life and help guide our decision-making so there is less risk to people and planet. I am deeply disturbed by this horrific new attitude toward those dedicated to the furtherance of human knowledge.

2. Educate and Inform: In a well-informed (predicated upon fact, not propaganda) and educated society -we would not elect and provide nuclear codes to a failed game show host. While some have said to be patient with the President-elect -his choice of Steve Bannon -and every Cabinet post selection has created nothing but extreme concern (with the possible exception of someone with the nickname "Mad Dog") -we know that there will be no room for negotiation -the intent is to assail American society on all fronts to serve as a distraction for the real objective -the consolidation of wealth and power. There must be meaningful conversations everywhere about the role of politics and economics in our daily lives -predicated upon facts. It can't just be in university classrooms or the left talking to itself. People do need to understand that when WalMart enriches its shareholders by $6.8 billion dollars while WalMart workers file for $6.2 billion in relief from poverty -THAT IS A TAX -and a tax of the worst kind -an externality. It is not creating value, strengthening America or growing the economy -it's merely moving money from working Americans to the wealthiest Americans. I am evaluating emerging platforms that provides a chain of custody for the flow of information such that it is not opinion built upon a foundation of propaganda to look like news.

3. Focus on Outcomes: When we begin from purely a liberal or conservative perspective and argue about social welfare versus corporate welfare, forests versus jobs, taxes as an investment versus taxes as a burden -what is it that we are really saying? I do not know any liberals that want a system that rewards unemployment. I can't think of any conservatives (with the possible exception of Dick Cheney) that would say -go ahead and inject toxic chemicals near our drinking water supply. We must work to agree on the results we all want for a strong, growing and united America. When we shift to outcomes -we have far more in common then when we argue about specific policy. Let's get back to what we have in common as Americans -then let's look at the best path to implement legislation and economic policy in a manner that is accountable, transparent and participatory for all.

4. Achieve Scale: A handful of people can help influence -however ultimately it is masses of people necessary to drive imperative change in government -in a sustained way. We will not agree with everyone on everything. We must remain focused on the greater good and remain united. Divided we are marginalized and conquered. One minute we are arguing about an email server -the next minute Rex Tillerson is being given the keys to the White House -and to drilling for Oil in the Arctic and everywhere else. Betsy DeVos is placed in charge of the public education system she seeks to destroy. We must understand the big picture. I will not get everything I want -but I will still work shoulder to shoulder with you to strengthen America and to improve the quality and dignity of life everywhere.

I'm presently looking at open source technology components and how to quickly amass capacity to build a platform for both on and offline methods to address the points above and am grateful for all that seek to extend, evolve and participate.

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