[COMM-ORG] New COMM-ORG Paper: Whatever Happened to Community Organizing?

Discussion list for COMM-ORG colist at comm-org.wisc.edu
Tue Mar 30 08:23:23 CDT 2010


[ed:  thanks to Larry for the discussion.]

From: Larry Yates <lamaryates at igc.org>


This paper is definitely worth reading, and in fact got me to sign in to 
the Comm-Org website so I can comment on it. (Shame on me for not doing 
that some time ago.)

One immediate thought is that the phenomenon Ellen describes is related 
to, or has been exacerbated by, the election of Barack Obama to the 
Presidency. This remarkable event, while clearly a positive and historic 
step, has thrown progressives and the left off their stride in a variety 
of ways. For a different perspective on this, from the left of the 
antiwar movement, take a look at the Anti-War Movement Seven Years after 
Shock and Awe by Dennis O'Neil and Eric See: 
http://firemtn.blogspot.com/2010/03/anti-war-movement-seven-years-after.html. 
(My comments there are under my first name.)

Overreacting to individual Presidents is a characteristic flaw of USAns. 
I think some of us blame/praise them for the weather (and I don't mean 
the climate). In the case of Obama, this makes more sense than usual, 
since he is arguably the most intelligent and adept President we have 
had since Lyndon Johnson. Nevertheless, no matter who is President (and 
I mean this even if I get elected ) the time-tested rules of 
movement-building still apply. Thanks to Ellen for helping us to re-focus.

Larry Yates
Winchester VA

BTW, I have no plans at this time to run for President.

Discussion list for COMM-ORG wrote:
> --------
> This is a COMM-ORG 'colist' message.
> All replies to this message come to COMM-ORG only.
> --------
>  
> Hi COMM-ORG,
>
> I am very pleased to announce the second 2010 COMM-ORG paper:
>
> Whatever Happened to Community Organizing?
>
>      by Ellen Ryan
>
>      http://comm-org.wisc.edu/comm-org/page.php?7
>
> At a time when we have witnessed the demise of ACORN, and the reality 
> shock of the health care fight, this paper asks whether we may have lost 
> our way.  Has community organizing become reduced to just political 
> mobilizing?  Are organizers building any strength that can withstand the 
> opposition?  This is an important paper to read and discuss, and I 
> welcome you to do both.
>
> Randy Stoecker
> moderator/editor, COMM-ORG
> rstoecker at wisc.edu
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