Jul 23 – Monthly Meeting – Democratic Party Mechanics for Non-mechanics

Steve Rivera is a long time member of the California Democratic Party and  former Regional Director for our area, Region 20. At this month's meeting Steve explains the structure of the Democratic Party and in particular the local and State party organization.

Steve will cover Party basics, where he thinks there will be changes and how we can make it better.

From the national level on down changes are being demanded by regular Party members. Last year the Democratic National Convention Rules Committee agreed to change the rules regarding superdelegates. Just this last week San Diego County Democratic clubs proposed changing the Bylaws of the San Diego County Democratic Party to insure that clubs are consulted on rule changes that affect clubs and their members.

These are exciting times to be a Democrat and its important to understand what that really means. We need to better understand the makeup of our Party so we can work together to improve it. Across the country from local governments, to state houses to national offices the Democratic party has been losing ground to our opponents. Reversing that trend involves questioning the makeup of the party and how it functions.

There will also be a chance to meet new candidates who are gearing up for great things in 2018. Come along, bring a friend, and meet progressives from Point Loma, Ocean Beach and beyond!


 

4:00PM – 5:30PMPointLomaAssemblyMap

<a href=”https://maps.google.com/maps?q=Point+Loma+Assembly,+3035+Talbot+Street,+San+Diego,+CA&hl=en&sll=32.824552,-117.108978&sspn=1.024769,1.116486&hq=Point+Loma+Assembly,&hnear=3035+Talbot+St,+San+Diego,+California+92106&t=m&z=17%E2%80%9D%20>Point Loma Assembly

For additional info call (619) 800-5098
Directions and parking information


Social Time
Members are encouraged to get together from 3:30PM before the meeting starts, please bring whatever light drinks/snacks that you’d like to share.

After the meeting ends we suggest adjourning to the Point Break Cafe at 2743 Shelter Island Dr to continue our progressive conversation. Happy Hour is until 6:30pm.

Notes from May Meeting – Democratic State of Play Moving into 2018

Club President Jonathan Wubbolding called the meeting to order at 4:02 PM and thanked everyone for coming. Next, he welcomed new Club members and among those who introduced themselves were Michelle Morgan, Carl Yaekel, and Gail Saivar. After making a call for any elected officials or their representatives, former elected officials, or any candidates who wished to speak, the following responded:

Doug Case, Political Affairs Director for State Senator Toni Atkins, said that three of Sen. Atkins’ bills had recently been released from the Appropriations Committee and would come up for vote soon: SB 562 – the Healthy California Act; SB 2 – the Building Homes and Jobs Act; and, SB 179 – the Gender Recognition Act.

Glenn Jensen, an economist running to replace Duncan Hunter in District 50, said he was tired of partisan politics and that we needed to appeal to moderate Republicans and Independents in order to win races. If elected, he promised to compel the government to deal with every issue, such as health care and climate change, as a national security matter and with fiscal discipline.

Jonathan explained that John Hartley, coordinator for Neighborhoods for Fair Elections, had been rescheduled to speak in July.

Liz Silverman spoke about SB 562, which would create a single-payer universal health care system in California and provide comprehensive coverage for all its citizens. Though it would raise taxes, she believed the vast majority of people would save money because health care premiums, deductibles, and co-pays would be eliminated and costs would be controlled through a reduction in administrative overhead and though negotiation with pharmaceutical companies. She urged Club members to help canvass local neighborhoods and to contact their representatives, and asked the Club to endorse the bill. Jonathan entertained a motion to endorse, Susan Peinado moved that the Club endorse SB 562 – the Healthy California Act, it was seconded, hearing no discussion, a voice vote was made and the endorsement passed.











Program: Dr. Cody Petterson – Democratic State of Play Moving into 2018
Local anthropologist Cody Petterson discussed the current state of play within the San Diego County Democratic Party. The overarching theme of his talk was the need for activists to transition from protest to power and to move from focusing on national abstractions to developing progressive policies that dealt with concrete local problems.
While protests have been great for solidarity, he said that they were now wasting too much time and resources and that there was a need to have more forces out in the field working in the chambers of power, speaking before city councils and planning boards, manning phone banks, walking precincts, and writing op-eds because the bulk of our problems were right here at home and we could have a direct hand in solving them.

Acknowledging that there was still a lot of antagonism within the party as a result of the 2016 primary, he said he was very motivated to help foster party unity and thought it could be achieved by focusing on common issues. He spoke about social science’s idea of the Overton window, or window of discourse, which he defined as perspectives that are legitimate to have with regard to topics, and said such a window was created after the primary when there was dramatic shift to more agreement within the party on a range of ideas.

He then provided a rundown on the current local political scene, discussed the various issues, and looked ahead to the 2018 elections. He said there was a need to develop more leadership at the local level and that progressives were shifting to vetting and then promoting candidates rather than relying on the party pipeline. He went on to say that we should not abandon our representatives after helping get them elected; we needed to actively support them when they act in line with our values and speak out when they move away from them because it would help push our progressive issues and create accountability.

Next, he covered the issue of homelessness, the need for effective mass transit, the fact that the San Diego Police Department was critically understaffed, and most important to him, the inventory and affordability problem in local housing. He said that it was unfortunately not the time to campaign on climate change because he felt that people don’t care about it and that we’ve failed to educate even ourselves on the nuts and bolts of the issue, but that it was, however, the time to identify proxy issues that will inevitably impact the climate and that voters already respond to, such as the need to intensify urban development and avoid urban sprawl.

The primary lesson he learned from 2016 was that no one was going save us but ourselves; when you see something that needs to get done, the person to do it was you, and the time to do it was now. He said that though it was a burdensome time for us, there was something powerful in it because we have entered a heroic age. His parting message to everyone was: “Save us and become heroes.”

You can listen to a Podcast of Cody’s talk here.

Club Reports
Vice President
– Merrin invited everyone to attend the third PLDC Happy Hour at 5:30 PM on Wednesday, June 14, at the Old Venice Restaurant. She also said volunteers were needed to help set up/break down and man the Club’s booth at the June 24 OB Street Fair.

Treasurer – Jonathan announced that after a month-long search for a new Treasurer, he’d appointed long-time Club member Dave Furlano to the position and asked the Club to ratify the appointment. Dave introduced himself, said he had an undergraduate degree in pharmacy and a PhD in chemistry, became involved in drug development working for the FDA and in Big Pharma, and that now he wanted to step up and contribute to the Club. Susan Peinado moved that the Club ratify Jonathan’s appointment of Dave as Club Treasurer, it was seconded, hearing no discussion, Jonathan called for a voice vote and the motion carried.

Announcements

  • Fred Rogers, Vice President of the San Diego County Democrats for Environmental Action, announced that a public forum on the Soccer City proposal would be held on Wednesday, June 14, at the Mission Valley Library on Fenton Parkway.
  • Kathy Stadler of San Diego County Indivisible said they wanted to put a personal face on the statistics of Americans who would be harmed if the Republican health care bill became law and urged people to share their experiences in 15-second to one-minute videos. They could stay and record one after the meeting or go to www.sandiegoindivisible.com/press/media.
  • James Elia announced that an event called “Serve Our Vets’ Pets” would be held on June 17, 11:00 AM – 2:00 PM at Nate’s Point Dog Park in Balboa Park where people could contribute food and other items for veteran’s pets. He said more info could be found on the Support Underserved Vets with Pets Facebook page and at http://www.gofundme.com/veteransandpets.
  • John Hartley, the coordinator for Neighborhoods for Fair Elections, which pushes for campaign finance reform in San Diego, invited everyone to attend their kick-off event on June 10, 10:00 AM, at the First Unitarian Church across from the UCSD Medical Center. The topic will be “Does San Diego Have Fair Elections? Past, Present, and Future.”
  • Phil Manson said the Pacific Beach Democratic Club had invited the Club to attend the next Drinking With Donkeys on May 31, 5:30 PM, at Stone Brewing in Liberty Station to get to know members from five other clubs.

Jonathan announced that there would be no Club meeting in June because of the Club’s participation in the OB Street Fair. He thanked everyone for coming and invited everyone to meet afterwards at the Point Break Café at 2743 Shelter Island Drive to continue discussion.

The meeting was adjourned at 5:33 PM.


Meeting notes: Deborah Currier, Secretary
Photo credit: John Loughlin

Podcast – Dr Cody Petterson – Democratic State of Play Moving into 2018

Local anthropologist Cody Petterson discussed the current state of play within the San Diego County Democratic Party. The overarching theme of his talk was the need for activists to transition from protest to power and to move from focusing on national abstractions to developing progressive policies that deal with concrete local problems.

We encourage you to subscribe to our Podcast channel here. You can also find us on the iTunes Store just search for Point Loma & OB Dems or click here, as well as on Stitcher.


 


Recordings used during the discussion do not contain explicit language.

Music used by kind permission of the Oily Buoys.


iTunes

podcastfanfaq_iconWhat are Podcasts? Our podcasts are edited recordings of our meetings made freely available on the Internet. They’ll usually be audio but we may make video recordings available as well.

stitcher_logo_white-_bgOne-third of all Americans (12 years of age or older) have listened to a podcast according to Pew Research on Podcasts.

Our podcasts are a great way to share information from our guest speakers for free and enable us to reach a wider audience.

We hope you enjoy our podcasts. Let us know what you think in the comments.

Notes from April Meeting – Voting Rights

Club President Jonathan Wubbolding called the meeting to order at 4:05 PM. He thanked everyone for coming and asked any new members to stand and introduce themselves. He then made a call for any elected officials or their representatives, former elected officials, or any candidates who wished to speak and the following responded:

Doug Case, Political Affairs Coordinator for State Senator Toni Atkins, gave a brief update on the following bills: SB 562, the single-payer bill; SB 2, which would provide a permanent funding stream for affordable housing; SB 179, the gender recognition act; and, SB 54, the California Values Act, which would prohibit California law enforcement from enforcing immigration laws.

Ed Harris, representative for the city lifeguards and former City Council member, gave an update on the controversy brewing between the Fire Chief and the Lifeguard Union. He said that the Fire Chief made a major change recently, without informing the lifeguards, about how emergency calls were dispatched. Now, when there is a need for an ocean rescue, 911 calls are sent to Police Dispatch, then to Fire Dispatch, before finally being sent to Lifeguard Dispatch, causing a lot confusion and life-threatening delays.

Omar Passons, a land use/construction attorney, said he was a candidate for County Supervisor, District 4, primarily because he wanted every child in every community to have a strong start in life and because he was concerned about the problem of homelessness and how it was crippling the senior population. More information can be found at www.omarpassons.com.

Jordan Beane, candidate for City Council District 2, spoke about yesterday’s Earth Day rally and said it was disheartening that we need to stand up and fight for facts. He said it was time for new leadership in District 2 and that people can go to www.jordanbeane.com for more details.

Bryan Pease, a public interest attorney focusing on government transparency and accountability, spoke about his candidacy for City Council District 2; he asked people to go to www.bryanpease.com for more information.

Lori Saldaña, who served in the State Legislature for six years, spoke about April 26 being designated Denim Day to call attention to serious issues in our society regarding rape and sexual assault. She also said that April was Sexual Assault Awareness Month and that this year’s theme was “Engaging New Voices.” She spoke about how people can raise their voices on the issue and work for change, and pointed out that there are a lot of misconceptions about what constitutes sexual assault and violent crimes.

Denim Day Resolution: Saldaña asked the Club to pass a resolution in support of Denim Day and demand a clearing of the backlog of DNA evidence kits. Anne Hoiberg made the motion for the Club to write the demands in a letter to the San Diego City Council, it was seconded, the motion carried and passed unanimously.

Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez Fletcher spoke about her recently introduced legislation. AB 1312 – Sexual Assault Survivor Bill of Rights, currently in Assembly Appropriations, would insure that rape kits were not destroyed prematurely and were processed within a certain period of time; right now, evidence can be destroyed after two years. She displayed a chart showing that San Diego had a backlog of 2,873 unprocessed rape kits, compared to New York City and Los Angeles having none. She has also coauthored legislation that would make rape a violent felony if the victim was unconscious.

Gonzalez Fletcher then spoke about the county’s transportation problems. She explained that the local transit operators, SANDAG and MTS, were charged with spending all transportation money, yet SANDAG’s board was made up of people from ten cities that represent only 12% of the area’s population; as it stands, the mayor of Del Mar, a city of only 4,000 people, would be in charge of transportation for millions of people in San Diego. To address the injustice, she introduced AB 805 to reform how the region spends and tracks transportation funding and redo the board so that members would be in proportion to the population.

She also spoke about other issues, such as the border wall, and assured everyone that she was fighting the Trump agenda every step of the way and urged everyone to keep up the fight. Next, she introduced her husband, Nathan Fletcher, the Club’s featured speaker.













Program: Nathan Fletcher – Voting Rights
Nathan Fletcher, a UC San Diego political science professor and former State assemblyman, praised his wife as being that rare individual willing to take on powerful interests and fight for those without power, citing her successes in getting paid sick leave for hourly workers and overtime pay for farm workers, making California the first state to honor the work of everyone.

He then paid special tribute to Jonathan, the Club’s president. He said that Jonathan was a veteran and part of today’s generation that has returned home from war and was now serving their communities. He said that though his military service had ended, his commitment to service and love of country had not and that it was great to see him leading the Club and driving an agenda.

Fletcher went on to speak about the frustration veterans feel when they see the Right hijacking the progressive agenda and their respective values. He explained that the military has always been ahead of its time and has an amazingly progressive story to tell. For example, it was

racially integrated 16 years before the Civil Rights Act, has a single-payer government-funded health care system that works, and considers climate change to not just be an environmental issue but also a moral and national security issue.

He then spoke about the deportation of veterans and how he was incredulous when he heard it was happening. He’d thought that veterans were citizens and could not be deported, that they’d been told from the beginning that if they were willing to die for the country and take the oath of enlistment, which is almost verbatim the oath of naturalization, that they would become citizens. However, he learned that for the past 50 years, the government had been systematically failing to fulfill its promise. He explained that like any segment of the population, or sometimes as a result of PTSD or other issues faced while serving, some veterans go astray and commit offenses, but that a grateful and compassionate nation should offer a path to redemption and rehabilitation, not a path to deportation.

He has worked with friends at the ACLU to advocate, help raise awareness, and drive change. They formed a coalition and got legislation introduced in Sacramento and D.C., and everything was looking great until Trump happened. They then had to become creative and took the approach of wondering, “What if the crime goes away?” and started lobbying Gov. Brown to issue pardons, which had never been done before based on a deportation process. The Governor eventually pardoned three veterans, however, there were 307 others who need help and Fletcher urged people to go to http://www.deportedvets.org to sign a petition and join their effort.

Next, Fletcher related a conversation he witnessed when serving on the national advisory board of Obama’s Organizing for Action project. At one of the meetings, President Obama was asked, “What if Congress said it would pass just one piece of legislation for you, just one time—what would it be?” Obama replied that he’d never been asked that and had never even thought about it because it was so detached from reality. After some thought, he said “Compulsory Voting”, because he believed if the country had that, everything else would take care of itself. The answer inspired Fletcher to create a new university class devoted entirely to the Voting Rights Act of 1965. He said if people can’t access the ballot, no amount of persuasion can help; because the GOP can’t win an election based on ideas, they have to keep people from voting.

Fletcher explained that although the 15th Amendment, ratified in 1870, said that the right to vote shall not be denied on the basis of race, some states required “certain people” to take a literacy test designed to be impossible to pass (Fletcher noted that none of his college students have been able to). The Department of Justice was then established to enforce voting rights in the South and progress was made until President Hayes was persuaded to “restore home rule” and removed the Federal troops. Progress began again in the 1900’s, most notably with the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965; however, in 2013, a huge setback occurred when the Supreme Court ruled that voter protection was no longer needed.

At the conclusion of his talk, Fletcher encouraged everyone to include the issues of voter’s rights and voter participation when working for change at every level of government.

Club Reports
President – Jonathan Wubbolding, as an aside, said that he, too, had taken the literacy test Fletcher had spoken about and reiterated that no one could pass it.

  • OB Street Fair – A call was made for members to volunteer to man the Club’s booth at the June 24 OB Street Fair and a sign up sheet was passed around.
  • Happy Hour – The Club’s April 12 Happy Hour at the Old Venice Restaurant was a huge success; everyone was encouraged to go to next month’s, which would be held on May 17.
  • Dues – April is the last month to pay Club dues for 2017 and members will be removed from the rolls if they fail to pay.

Treasurer – Jonathan announced that the Club was in need of a new treasurer because Thena Taylor had resigned.

Announcements

Jonathan thanked everyone for coming and invited all to meet afterwards at the Point Break Café at 2743 Shelter Island Drive to continue discussion.

The meeting was adjourned at 5:23 PM.


Meeting notes: Deborah Currier, Secretary
Photo credit: John Loughlin

May 28 – Democratic State of Play Moving into 2018

Dr. Cody Petterson will discuss the current state of play within the San Diego County Democratic Party and describe a progressive path to victory throughout the County in 2018. His talk will begin with an overview of the results of the California Democratic Party’s 2017 Convention. He will then discuss the lingering effects of the 2016 Democratic Primary and continue with a brief description of the current San Diego Democratic political environment, including the current split in the county Labor movement and the ongoing conflict on the City Council. After a brief review of the local races that are likely to draw the Party’s attention in 2018, Dr. Petterson will detail some of the ways in which the local progressive movement is working to revitalize the Party and insure strong, populist progressive victories across the county in 2018.


Dr. Cody Petterson is Director of the Sequoia Foundation, a non-profit social science research firm dedicated to impact assessment, climate mitigation, and community resilience. He is also a newly elected delegate of the 78th Assembly District. His polemical and conservation writing can be found on Medium and Instagram, under the handle @theguessworker.


 

4:00PM – 5:30PMPointLomaAssemblyMap

, 3035 Talbot St, San Diego, CA 92106
For additional info call (619) 800-5098
Directions and parking information


Social Time
Members are encouraged to get together from 3:30PM before the meeting starts, please bring whatever light drinks/snacks that you’d like to share.

After the meeting ends we suggest adjourning to the Point Break Cafe at 2743 Shelter Island Dr to continue our progressive conversation. Happy Hour is until 6:30pm.

Apr 23 – Monthly Meeting – Voting Rights

UC San Diego political science professor (and former Assemblyman) Nathan Fletcher teaches a class on the Voting Rights Act of 1965.

From the Declaration of Independence through to the 2013 Supreme Court decision which found a section of the Voting Rights Act unconstitutional his course covers the history of voting rights in the United States including attempts to disenfranchise voters.

Literacy tests were used as a means to deny voters along lines of race and class – Louisiana literacy test (PDF) – and continue to flummox UCSD undergraduates today – Union-Tribune article by @GaryWarthUT.

Many of our struggles with the present Administration will come down to the 2018 Ballot boxes and who is willing, and able, to vote.

Assemblyman Nathan Fletcher is our featured speaker this evening, and we’re delighted to also welcome Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez Fletcher who will speak on her recently introduced legislation.


4:00PM – 5:30PM

, 3035 Talbot St, San Diego, CA 92106
For additional info call (619) 800-5098
Directions and parking information


Social Time
Members are encouraged to get together from 3:30PM before the meeting starts, please bring whatever light drinks/snacks that you’d like to share.

After the meeting ends we suggest adjourning to the Point Break Cafe at 2743 Shelter Island Dr to continue our progressive conversation. Happy Hour is until 6:30pm.