Wednesday, February 8, 2017

America's Most Pressing Infrastructure Problem

And, no, it ain't potholes.

As a resident of Maricopa County, Arizona, I have the dubious honor of living in the only major metropolitan county in America that went for Donald Trump.  That puts me in a unique position to explore the dynamics that led up to where we are today.  And, from what I've seen so far, we have a major infrastructure problem.

During the campaign, I was surprised that our home didn't get a single call.  There were no flyers, nobody offering lawn signs.  Nothing.  After the election, I tried to get in touch with my local Democratic Party folks.  It was kind of like trying to spot a coyote.  There were signs that they existed, but making contact was damn near impossible.  We just. Had. An. Election!  The party should have been at its peak.

When I did make contact, I was disappointed to learn that, in my district, ten of the twelve precinct committee seats were vacant.  I attended a party meeting and found four regular attendees. (there were a LOT of first-timers, though).  I was a little bit heartbroken to see it.  According to the news, Clinton has this legendary machine and vaunted "ground game." And Arizona was considered "in play."  Where the hell was everyone?

That was when I knew: things are not as they seem.  What's more: it was all my fault.

Federalism:  The Liberal's New "Shovel-Ready Project"

Tip O'Niell famously said "all politics is local."  It's been interpreted and applied many different ways, but here's how I take it: we are the party, and we aren't showing up for work.  The National  Democratic party hasn't been putting any money into local races.  That's disappointing, but, honestly, who would they mail the check to?

The Democrat Party is rightly associated with the Civil Rights Movement and Women's Equal Rights.  These became national issues, because certain regions of the country simply wouldn't get on board on their own.  We needed the Federal Government to weigh in and draw the line.  But those are extreme examples that have become the default solution.  We are a federal republic.  The more decisions are made locally, the more relevant they are to the people who have to live with (and pay for) them.  And besides, how do you groom talent for national office if you don't have a so-called 'minor league' team to pull from?

It's not enough to vote.  It's not enough to send a check.  It's not even enough to protest.  We have to roll up our sleeves, dig in, and participate.  I challenge you to find your local legislative district TODAY and contact the party representatives.  Not the elected officials, the worker bees!  Find out when the next meeting is scheduled and GO. If what you see scares you, then it's your job to help fix it.

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