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Chapter 14 | Let’s Try This Again

Carol O’Keefe Wilson University of North Texas Press PDF

Chapter 14

Let’s Try This Again

O

n August 1, 1917, the special session met with 118 members of the House of Representatives in attendance. Speaker of the House Frank Fuller wasted no time in taking the floor where he began to read the thirteen charges he had drawn against Governor Ferguson. It was soon apparent that the pro-impeachment forces were in control even though Ferguson loyalists attempted to stall them.

Within a few days, Fuller, working with other like-minded representatives, had established a Committee of the Whole to investigate the evidence against the governor. The impeachment process would be a two-part undertaking beginning with an investigation by the House, a critical first step that could abruptly end their course of action. Based on its findings, the House would decide whether or not to submit a bill of impeachment to the Senate. To the dismay of those who were anxious to move forward with a trial, serious issues with the first step of the impeachment process soon emerged, issues so significant that they had the potential of jeopardizing the entire process.

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4 A Parallel Economy

Rowe, Jonathan Berrett-Koehler Publishers ePub

For two centuries, economists have regarded the commons as a medieval relic. Money is what really counts, and progress follows in the train of it.

Perhaps this was true for a while. At the start of the industrial age, products were scarce and commons abundant. All the economic gears were arranged to produce more stuff. But times change and scarcities shift. Where once the products of the market were scarce, now it is commons that are scarce, and also most needed. For this reason the commons is not a relic. It is a parallel economy that does real work, a counterpoise to the market that provides antidotes to many pathologies of the modern age.

Take quiet, for example. For centuries, noise has been regarded as a byproduct of progress. Today, Americans rate noise as the number-one urban problem. Not crime or trash, but noise.

Quiet is not a mere amenity. People need it for sleep and concentration, both of which are in short supply. One study showed that kids who live in the rear of apartment buildings do better in school than those who live above noisy streets. The market’s answer is drugs for sleeping and concentration—more products for sale, in other words. But does not quiet get better results at less expense? Critics say noise controls are obstacles to the economy. In reality, they are economic measures that meet a real need.

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4 Story

Whitman, Gordon Berrett-Koehler Publishers ePub

Getting started on change isn’t hard. If you’re frustrated about what you see happening in the world or your community or workplace, go out and talk to another person. Share your story. Hear that person’s. Talk about what both of you care about. Explain the source of your anger. Build a relationship. Storytelling may seem like a distraction from the real work of politics, but it grounds all social change because stories are how humans make sense of the world. We use them to communicate our values, what we care enough about to act on and even risk our lives to achieve. Four important results happen in organizing when we start with story.

First, we experience a small taste of the world that we’re struggling to bring into existence. When I listen to your story with focus, I communicate that I see you. You matter. You belong. When I tell my own story to another person, or to a thousand people, I assert my humanity. Indeed, this may be the action that is most in my control that gives me dignity.

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6. The Legal Trajectory of the Palestinian Refugee Issue: From Exclusion to Ambiguity

NoContributor Indiana University Press ePub

 

From Exclusion to Ambiguity

SUSAN MUSARRAT AKRAM

At the end of 2011, out of a total Palestinian population of about 11.2 million persons, some 7.4 million were refugees or internally displaced.1 The Palestinian people constitute one of the largest and longest-standing unresolved situations of displacement in the world; about one in three refugees worldwide is Palestinian.2 Given the size and protracted nature of this refugee flow, one would imagine that a great deal of energy would be expended on adapting international legal principles to craft a durable solution for this problem. Instead, it is often said that the Palestinian refugee problem is unique, that existing principles are inapplicable, that existing legal instruments do not cover Palestinian refugees, and hence that the problem is intractable.3

Since the drafting of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in 1945, both widespread state practice and a codified body of law have developed that address almost every aspect of refugee and displaced persons’ rights.4 A central premise is that all refugees, without distinction, have certain rights, and that states have concomitant obligations to respect, protect, and implement those rights. The core legal principles applicable in the search for durable solutions for mass refugee flows are: the right to return to one’s home and place of origin in safety; the right to voluntarily choose among available resettlement options; the right to full restitution of property left behind; and the right to compensation for loss or damage to refugee property.5 The right to protection for refugees and stateless persons, and the engagement of the international community in providing the benefits that are lost from failure of national protection, have been spelled out in explicit terms in several of the most widely ratified treaties that exist today, including the 1951 Refugee Convention and the 1954 Convention on Stateless Persons.6 These treaties broaden the fundamental customary international law rights of return and restitution, incorporate what are considered binding international definitions of refugees and stateless persons, and expand international obligations to implement fundamental refugee and stateless persons’ rights.7

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12. A Theology That Does Not Stop

Mary Beth Rogers University of North Texas Press PDF

12

A Theology That Does Not Stop

Los Angeles, 1976

Sister Maribeth Larkin has only a small role to play today at city hall when members of a new East Los Angeles community group make their presentation to the city council. All she has to do is to translate from Spanish to English the words of the local leaders who will present the concerns of the United Neighborhoods Organization (UNO) to the council. But she is queasy.

Fear grips her stomach, and the telephone call from Ernesto

Cortes doesn't help.

"I'm testing you out," Cortes tells her. "We'll see how well you do today and then decide how we can use you." That's all the shy and slender, dear-eyed Sister of Social Service needs to lose her breakfast, even consider calling in sick. How can she possibly stand up and talk in front of the politicians and news media in the chambers of the Los Angeles City Council? Yet, how could she even consider backing out with so many people depending on her? Once again, fear and duty-the hallmarks of her life-provoke conflict within Maribeth Larkin. As usual, duty wins the battle, but the fear remains and turns to panic when she and almost 200 UNO members arrive to see that the council chambers are already full.

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Medium 9780253006851

4 - When Crisis Hits

Nuno S. Themudo Indiana University Press ePub

CHAPTER 3 SHOWS the remarkable association between level of economic development, economic risk, and nonprofit sector strength across nations. Does this relationship hold over time as well? At present, the absence of longitudinal data prevents a cross-national time-series reply to this question. To more closely examine the hypothesis that economic risk mediates the relationship between economic development and the nonprofit sector, and to better understand how it occurs and what nonprofits may do about it, this chapter and the next examine the evolution of the Mexican nonprofit sector in the 1990s and early 2000s—before, during, and after the Tequila Crisis. The crisis is described as having “caused one of the worst recessions to hit an individual country since the 1930s” (Krugman 2008:39). With Mexico's population of nearly 100 million people at the time, the crisis brought suffering to millions of Mexicans and presented significant challenges to the nonprofit sector.

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Medium 9780253356772

6 Stories Become Persons

Harri Englund Indiana University Press ePub

From semi-literates to academics, Malaŵians were generally familiar with Nkhani Zam’maboma. Although the regularity with which they followed the program varied greatly, virtually everyone I knew was able to discuss it with me. While many could cite its stories about witchcraft and errant authorities, some were unaware that the sources of those stories lay in letters, telephone calls, faxes, and e-mails from listeners.1 One university lecturer, for example, explained to me that from time to time some areas would emerge as what he called “hot spots,” locations where several incidents took place within a short span of time. Others assumed that the MBC’s network of reporters across the country supplied stories. What was remarkable about these perceptions was not so much their lack of accuracy as their expectation that the MBC could alone provide national coverage of localized stories. The expectation bespoke a residual faith in the broadcaster’s remit to represent the nation, whatever frustrations these listeners felt over its biased and didactic approach to other programs. In actual fact, in spite of having offices and studios in the three regions of the country, the MBC had no means of gathering stories from villages and townships on a daily basis.2 The frequent appearance of certain localities was a result of the frequent supply of stories from them.

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4 The Office of the Supreme Leader: Epicenter of a Theocracy and Kourosh Rahimkhani

Daniel Brumberg Indiana University Press ePub

4

The Office of the Supreme Leader

Epicenter of a Theocracy

Mehrzad Boroujerdi and Kourosh Rahimkhani

AS A THEOCRATIC state born through a popular revolution, the Islamic Republic of Iran (IRI) has exhibited both democratic and authoritarian features since its inception. The Supreme Leader is considered the epicenter of Iran’s theocratic authority structure and the ultimate arbiter of Iranian politics. Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei has managed to mold the Iranian regime to his liking through both his talent and his fortunate institutional position. He has exhibited deft political skills and is the accidental beneficiary of a theocratic system that decided to deal with the challenges of its postcharismatic leader phase, after Grand Ayatollah Seyyed Ruhollah Khomeini’s demise, by concentrating more power in individual hands. Whereas Khomeini used his charisma to consolidate the office of the Supreme Leader, Khamenei strengthened this office through bureaucratic aggrandizement, reliance on security forces, and informal politics. Thanks to his long administrative career, hypersecurity outlook, and micromanager disposition, Khamenei has incrementally subdued his political and clerical opponents and amassed a great deal of power in the Office of the Supreme Leader. This position represents a parallel government that is powerful, not transparent, and unaccountable. Any discussion of the political evolution of the Islamic Republic needs to grapple with the hefty position of the Office of the Supreme Leader and the formidable assets at its disposal.

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12 - Tending to the Homefront

John T. Shaw Indiana University Press ePub

In the history of the U.S. Senate, about two thousand people have served in the upper chamber and less than two dozen have been elected to serve six terms. Many of those who have served this long came from states in which one party was in clear ascendancy throughout their political careers, so that once they secured a Senate seat they could keep it until they wanted to leave—or until they died. Senators Edward Kennedy of Massachusetts, Robert Byrd of West Virginia, Strom Thurmond of South Carolina, Richard Russell of Georgia, Claiborne Pell of Rhode Island, and Russell Long of Louisiana are examples of this.1

During his more than 35-year career in the Senate, Richard Lugar has represented a state with strong Republican leanings, but it has not been a political lock for the GOP. To stay in Washington, Lugar has had to pay attention to the homefront. His political longevity and success in Indiana politics has not been a fluke. While he has had good luck, he has been a dominant force in Indiana politics as the result of policy accomplishments, careful attention to his state, and diligent attempts to describe what he is doing in Washington in a way that makes sense to his constituents.

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6. Richard Hongisto

Turner, William Berrett-Koehler Publishers ePub

Richard Hongisto was an enigma: a maverick cop who became a politician, a jailer who became a First Amendment hero, a police chief who became a First Amendment villain. He helped in trying to open the doors of government. Later he acted like a petty tyrant and clumsily tried to suppress criticism that stung him. He lurched from friend of a free press to destroyer of newspapers.

Hongisto worked as a San Francisco police officer in the turbulent 1960s. He was the only white officer to testify in federal court on behalf of the plaintiffs in a lawsuit alleging discrimination against African Americans on the police force. In 1971, he ran for Sheriff against the longtime incumbent and won an upset victory. As sheriff, he recruited minority deputies, appointed the first openly gay deputy, and tried to improve jail conditions. In charge of the San Francisco jails, he opened the doors to the press. In 1972, for example, he allowed local public television station KQED to do a 90-minute live television program from inside the jail. It vividly showed squalid jail conditions and included on-the-spot interviews with both prisoners and guards.

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Medium 9780253017314

Rubber Stamp or Robust Tribunal? The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court

David P Fidler Indiana University Press ePub

Rubber Stamp or Robust Tribunal?
The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court

Controversies stirred up by the leaks of the telephone metadata and Section 702 programs included debates about the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, a court unknown to most people and opaque even to those who study U.S. national security law. Congress established the FISC and the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court of Review in 1978 when it enacted FISA, but this secret court did not draw much attention until after 9/11. The FISCR heard its first appeal of a FISC decision in 2002 and published redacted, unclassified versions of decisions in 2002 and 2008. In the wake of Snowden’s disclosures about the telephone metadata and Section 702 programs, critics called the FISC a “rubber stamp”—a charge amplified by citing the FISC’s approval of almost every FISA application it reviewed. As seen in Robert Litt’s speech (Document 3), supporters argued that the FISC is a serious court that provides robust oversight. The U.S. government released the next document in September 2013 to counter the “rubber stamp” accusation. In this 2009 decision, the FISC suspends the NSA’s access to telephone metadata because the U.S. government violated FISC orders and made misrepresentations to the FISC. The U.S. government also declassified a 2011 decision (not included here) in which the FISC criticized the NSA for misrepresenting aspects of “upstream” surveillance conducted under Section 702 and held that NSA’s targeting and minimization procedures for such surveillance did not comply with the Fourth Amendment. The seriousness of the FISC’s analyses and decisions in these cases did not fit the “rubber stamp” critique. Critics, however, emphasized the NSA’s violations and misrepresentations as evidence that the FISC process needed major reform.

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Medium 9781576754429

8: CONVERGENCE

Halpern, Charles Berrett-Koehler Publishers ePub

IN 1989, while I was thinking about what to do next, I took the private elevator to a spacious suite on the thirty-fifth floor of the Waldorf Astoria, where I was greeted by several members of the family of the late Nathan Cummings, the Sara Lee cheesecake king. The hosts were Cummings’s elegantly dressed, silver-haired son and several of his adult grandchildren. His daughter, Buddy Mayer, who was not physically in the room, participated actively in the conversation from her hospital bed in Chicago via the conference telephone that sat on the coffee table beside the silver tea service. We sat informally on the overstuffed sofas, spreading marmalade on flaky, fragrant croissants as we talked. They welcomed me with unaffected cordiality into their circle.

A few weeks earlier, I had run into a friend on upper Broadway who told me about a new foundation, endowed in his will by Nathan Cummings with more than $300 million in assets. So far, his descendants had chosen four areas for grant making—arts, health, environment, and Jewish life—but they didn’t have a clear idea about what they wanted to do and were looking for a president to help them figure it out. The foundation would give away about $15 million each year. She asked if I would like to be considered.

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Medium 9781576752920

CHAPTER 10: A NEW, OLD ROAD MAP FOR CHANGE

Derber, Charles Berrett-Koehler Publishers ePub

We need regime change at home quickly, but it won’t happen until we know where we want to go. This requires big thinking by social movements, the Democratic Party, and especially readers like you. A new regime, as I’m sure you’ve concluded, cannot just be token reform of the corporate order. It has to be driven by a truly bold vision based on America’s own core values.

All corporate regimes transfer sovereignty away from the people. Our third corporate regime has been extreme, with transnational corporations unashamedly hijacking our government for their own ends. This has been accompanied by a disastrous loss of citizen empowerment and social security. The next regime must return sovereignty to the people in a democracy tailored for the new century, what I call “New Democracy.”216

I’ll bet you’re already skeptical, and I can understand why. It’s hard to take seriously the very idea of democracy—old or new—in a globalized era of transnational companies, corporate-dominated campaign financing, corporate-owned media, two corporate political parties, a military-industrial complex, and curtailed civil liberties. New Democracy can work only if it is inspiring enough to turn a population of exhausted workers and cynical couch potatoes into active citizens who believe they can make a better world.

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Medium 9781626567658

Relationship to Earth/Place

van Gelder, Sarah Berrett-Koehler Publishers ePub

TURTLE MOUNTAIN RESERVATION, NORTH DAKOTA—Drive the long, straight roads of north-central North Dakota, and you pass lake after lake, amid hay fields and forests. Migratory birds, attracted by the abundance of water and grain, pause here. Farmers, boaters, and fishermen orient their lives around the pure water.

The water, more than anything, explains why members of the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa Indians acted so quickly when they learned their region was next in line for fracking. Within just a few weeks of the tribal women’s meeting on the topic in late 2011, the council banned fracking on the 77,000-acre reservation. Their ban was among the first in North America, and it has since been upheld by succeeding tribal councils.

The process started in November 2011 when an elder, Carol Davis, called the women of the Turtle Mountain Tribe together. Fracking was booming on the Fort Berthold Reservation just a couple hundred miles away, and Davis had heard that the Turtle Mountain Reservation could be next. In the tribe’s tradition, women are responsible for protecting the water, so she invited the women to discuss fracking over a meal.

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7. The Debate on Islamism and Secularism: The Case of Palestinian Women’s Movements

NoContributor Indiana University Press ePub

 

The Case of Palestinian Women’s Movements

ISLAH JAD

Conflict over the construction of gender and the ideal woman is not a neutral or primarily religious concern. Nationalists and Islamists alike seek to establish an ideal society that depends on a particular conception of womanhood.1 The difference between the two conceptions is that religious or Islamist groups seek to restore a mythical age in which women were guardians of tradition,2 whereas the nationalists tout the fertile, modest peasant as their epitome of the feminine. In both cases, the ideal woman embodies a past when “traditional family and moral values [built] ‘our nation.’”3

Despite the similarities between them, the Islamist ideal woman is opposed to the “modern” ideal woman constructed by the secular nationalist discourse.4 While nationalists consider the society Islamists strive to build as reactionary and antimodern,5 Islamists view secularism as an unwanted colonial imposition, a worldview that gives precedence to the material over the spiritual, to a modern culture of alienation and unrestrained hedonism. The nationalists counter that secularism is central to universal humanism, a rational principle that calls for the suppression or restraint of religious passion so that intolerance and delusion can be controlled, and political unity, peace, and progress secured.6

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