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Mole's Progressive Democrat

The Progressive Democrat Newsletter grew out of the frustration of the 2004 election. Originally intended for New York City progressives, its readership is now national. For anyone who wants to be alerted by email whenever this newsletter is updated (usually weekly), please send your email address and let me know what state you live in (so I can keep track of my readership).

Location: Brooklyn, New York, United States

I am a research biologist in NYC. Married with two kids living in Brooklyn.

  • Help end world hunger
  • Friday, March 12, 2010

    Progressive Democrat Newsletter Issue 250

    Last week in my Texas Focus I concentrated on some absolutely critical School Board races. I got a comment that I was burying the lead in my story. What I failed to emphasize, though I mentioned, was that the Texas School Board DOMINATES the school textbook market. They are the ones who keep almost getting creationism in our science books, downplaying of slavery in our history textbooks, and Christianization of our education. What happens on the Texas School Board affects ALL OF OUR KIDS. So, even though most of you have never heard of them, two of the most important candidates of this year are Dr. Rebecca Bell-Metereau and Dr. Judy Jennings for Texas Board of Education.

    PLEASE DONATE TO Rebecca Bell-Metereau for Texas State Board of Education

    PLEASE DONATE TO Judy Jennings for Texas State Board of Education

    The future quality of textbooks across the country depend on these two races.

    Now on to healthcare. I am not in favor of "sending a message" just for the sake of sending a message. Too often it is either merely a waste of time or outright counterproductive. But sometimes, and I think now is one of those times, a carefully chosen message can make a huge difference.

    With regards to healthcare reform there are some dedicated champions in Congress (all Democrats) and some who have been as obstructionist as can be (from both parties). In some cases support for a champion (particularly if they are being targeted by the Republicans), support for an excellent candidate trying to flip a House or Senate seat from the Republicans, and a primary challenge to carefully selected obstructionist DINOs (a term I try not to use too often) can send a clear message that support of healthcare reform is a WINNING POSITION. And that is the key message we have to send: people who support healthcare reform need to be supported and those who oppose it need to be challenged.

    I have put together a carefully selected Act Blue List of key races where this message can, in my opinion, be best sent. I include people like Alan Grayson and Jared Polis, who are among the champions of the public option and who are excellent Congressional Reps to begin with. I include people like Lois Herr, Jennifer Brunner and Kendrick Meek who are trying to flip seats from the obstructionist Republicans and who are good candidates to begin with. And I include a handful of selected primary challengers (like Regina Thomas, Bill Halter and Connie Saltonstall) designed both to try and defeat key DINOs and/or to help Nancy Pelosi put pressure on those DINOs to stand by healthcare reform. Some of my choices are races that need our help anyway and we have a shot at winning (Jennifer Brunner, Alan Grayson, Bill Halter, etc.) Others may be long shots, but still worth focusing on for the pressure it puts on obstructionists.

    Now is the time to donate because now is the time when healthcare is at the forefront of Obama's agenda. Please pick one or two of the candidates I highlight on my Healthcare4America Act Blue Page and send a message that might actually make a real difference.

    President Obama has given the money from his Nobel Peace Prize to charity. The list of charities that have received money are:

    $250,000 -- went to Fisher House, which provides housing for families of patients being cared for at major military and VA medical centers.

    The Clinton-Bush Haiti Fund, which raises money for long-term relief efforts in Haiti following that country's devastating earthquake, received $200,000.

    $125,000 went to six different charities:

    -- College Summit, which partners with schools with the goal of increasing college enrollment;

    -- The Posse Foundation, which awards scholarships to "public high school students with extraordinary academic and leadership potential who may be overlooked by traditional college selection processes";

    -- The United Negro College Fund, which offers scholarship and internship programs for more than 60,000 students per year;

    -- The Hispanic Scholarship Fund, which awards scholarships and offers outreach support to the Hispanic community;

    -- The Appalachian Leadership and Education Foundation, which offers scholarships and leadership curriculum to young people from Appalachia;

    -- And the American Indian College Fund, which distributes scholarships to American Indian students and provides support for tribal college needs.

    Two charities were awarded $100,000 each. One is AfriCare, which offers programs in Africa addressing health and HIV/AIDS, food security and agriculture, and water resource development. The other is the Central Asia Institute, which promotes education and literacy in remote areas of Pakistan and Afghanistan with a focus on education girls.

    A wonderful list of charities helping people all over the world.

    Over at Daily Kos someone made and posted a video that helps explain how relatively small amounts of carbon dioxide can have such profound effects on our climate:

    Maybe his demonstration will help explain what is going on to more people. The videos I highlight below in this week's newsletter are excellent, but sometimes it takes a simple, clear demonstration like the one above to explain complex problems.

    I'll leave you with Obama's weekly address:

    Here is this week's newsletter:


    Excellent Videos Discussing Global Warming

    Obama and the Stimulus have helped our Economy

    Brooklyn, NY Focus

    Manhattan, NY Focus

    Queens, NY Focus

    Bronx, NY Focus

    Suffolk County, NY Focus

    Rochester, NY Focus

    New York 19th District Focus: Putnam, Dutchess, Orange, Rockland, and Westchester Counties


    Texas Focus: (CRITICAL!!!) Texas Board of Education

    Austin/Travis County, TX Focus

    Dallas County, TX Focus

    Houston/Harris County, TX Focus

    Texas 10th District Focus: Turn TX-10 Blue

    Texas 21st District Focus: Turn TX-21 Blue


    Silicon Valley Area, CA Focus

    San Diego, CA Focus

    Orange County, CA Focus

    California 11th District Focus: San Joaquin, Alameda and Santa Clara Counties


    Sussex County, NJ Focus

    Passaic County, NJ Focus

    Warren County, NJ Focus



    Charlottesville/Albemarle County, VA Foucus

    Fredericksburg/Spotsylvania County, VA Focus

    Hanover County, VA Focus



    Atlanta, GA Focus

    Fayette County, GA Focus

    Coweta County, GA Focus


    Lancaster Co. PA Focus







    Nevada Focus: Does Mining Pay Its Fair Share?


    Michigan Focus: More on the Real Bart Stupak...and Connie Saltonstall challenges Stupak





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