Tuesday, November 13, 2007

N'field Dems Meet: Discuss Priorities; Poverty

Welcome to the Northfield Democrats Blog!

This is my first foray into blogging, and hopefully others will join the discussion here. My goal is to post local news of interest, information and updates about local Democratic Party happenings and useful information about local candidates. Hope you'll join in the discussion.

Northfield Democrats met on Thursday, November 8, 2007 at the Brown Public Library. In addition to general housekeeping (approval of minutes, etc.) we discussed poverty in Vermont over apple cider (from Ellie's) and generally how we want to proceed over the coming months as we head towards Town Meeting Day (the primary) and the 2008 elections.

Everyone is interested in the Governor's race and doing what we can to help the Vermont Democrats take back the governorship. We also plan to help our local House and Senate candidates get elected.

As a first step we're cleaning up our old lists and planning on at least one lit drop on behalf of the party. We're also considering some public service projects... more on that later.

In sparking our discussion we watched a short video produced by Tom Garrett of Legal Services Law Line. It is a 15 - 20 minute video profiling several low-income Vermont families, and I think is indicative of the kinds of problems that low-income Vermonters face. You can watch it here: http://blip.tv/file/472613/

This is precisely why Douglas' so-called "affordability" agenda is akin to Bush's "clear skies initiative" or other doublespeak presented by this administration. Douglas talks about affordability, but what has he done to make life more affordable for average Vermonters? He vetoed the energy bill which would have increased efficiency and lowered bills for ordinary folks...

Remember Jim=Jobs? Not so much, lately. We absolutely should be discussing poverty in Vermont and how it ties into the way Douglas talks about "affordability." Empty rhetoric does nothing to improve our quality of life in Vermont. Democrats have a real opportunity to contrast our vision of the state with the GOP and get folks excited about our shared future. Northfield is hoping to do its part as well!


nate said...

Kudos to you, Christopher, for starting this up. It will be great to see the conversations evolve.

Nate Freeman

chuck gregory said...

Nate Freeman, I red your essay, "New bill no better than the old one," in the 2/10 Rutland Herald. I think you might want to learn about a system of campaign finance regulation that allows unlimited contributions from any source whatsoever (keeping the Supreme Court happy) and removes most of the raising/ spending obligations from candidates.

But it eliminates the compulsion to raise an excessive amount, the obligation winners feel toward their major donors. By focusing on the chokepoint in the campaign finance cycle, it makes enforcement immediate and punishment swift.

By establishing a reward system for the private sector, It involves a minimum of governmental intervention. It's called Vendor-Based Oversight. Let me know if you'd like more information about it.

nate said...


Thanks for the feedback. I'd love to learn more about it. I googled, "Vendor Based Oversight" but didn't come with anything, so I'm guessing this is a fairly new concept.

One point I would like to be clear on: I'm not an advocate for unlimited spending from either a political party or a single source. I am primarily concerned with the excessively low contribution limits offered in the new bill which, if challenged in court, will simply be deemed unconstitutional again.

That being said, I'm intrigued by the model you are bringing up.

Can you post a brief (or long) diary on it, please? Of course, you can contact me directly, but I think it would be interesting for everyone to read.