FRESH TAKES ON BIG CHALLENGES: OUR BLOGS & ARTICLES

Democracy Hero: Josh Silver

There is no question the political landscape has drastically changed after the 2016 election. For many, hope that the incoming administration will pass meaningful election reform has died. Moreover, many state houses are filled with money-driven politicians unlikely to be swayed by reformers. As a result, to save our democracy activists are increasingly looking to the ballot-initiative process to sidestep elected representatives. I chatted with a leading innovator of this strategy, Josh Silver, founder of Represent.Us, a non-partisan anti-corruption organization. The group, founded in 2011, succeeded in getting numerous anti-corruption initiatives on the ballot this year and many of them wer

A Progressive Agenda for Renegotiating NAFTA

Originally published by billmoyers.com on 11/22/2016 Workers make decorative tassels for curtains in a maquila in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico. From Matamoros, Mexico to Tijuana, US-owned maquiladoras employ a large work force. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Newsmakers) During the campaign, President-elect Donald Trump pledged to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) with Mexico and Canada, or withdraw the United States from the pact. Although no one at Trump Tower so far has asked me for advice (and I’m not waiting by my phone for a call), I know a little bit about this subject: Eight years ago I helped convene a panel of experts to make recommendations to another president who promise

And Now, For Some Good News

For a sailor on a dark night, there’s nothing more welcoming than the twinkle of a lighthouse, no matter how far off. And on Election Day 2016, the emerging citizen-led movement to take back our democracy illuminated more than a few points of light. At the same time Donald Trump won the presidency (which some will interpret as a brick through the Beltway glass), voters in cities and states across the country also seized the opportunity to make the Democracy Movement — a movement whose focus is on reforming our representative democracy — impossible to ignore. Across the country, we counted 17 ballot initiatives aimed at reducing the role of money in politics and enhancing the voices of everyd

Democracy Hero: Rep. John Sarbanes (Part One)

Last April, as part of Democracy Spring the two of us marched from Philly to D.C. with four game-changing demands for Congress: Get big money out of politics, ensure voting rights, improve voter registration, and reverse Supreme Court rulings that allow private wealth to defeat citizens' right to a meaningful political voice.Although virtually ignored by corporate media, some in Congress heard our voices--most notably Representative John Sarbanes (D-MD) who immediately collected roughly 100 Congressional signatures on a petition to hold hearings on our demands. Needless to say, John Sarbanes is a hero to many, shining the light on the mother of all issues: democracy itself. Recently we felt

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the Institute of writers, speakers, & activists Frances Moore Lappé and Anna Lappé

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