Actions Speak Louder Than Words

Carol A. Hand

I am so weary of the negative fear-based pleas that bombard my email daily – hundreds of them in the past weeks. When the DFL* canvasser came to my door last evening, I assured him I would vote even though I was profoundly disappointed by the absence of a positive agenda in any of the messages candidates from either party are proposing. I added that I’m still profoundly disappointed in the outcome of Obama’s version of promised change that won him his first term as president in 2008. An end of war? Health care reform? Homeowner protections from foreclosures? Closing Guantanamo? It is no small accomplishment to sow a sense of hopelessness in a nation

Four critical issues came to mind as I read the newest negative emails this morning, along with the words from a song by Buffy Sainte-Marie, “and what have you done for these ones?” What have you done about human rights abuses and genocide? What have you done to address increasing police brutality and racism? What have you done about growing economic inequality, homelessness, hunger and poverty? What have you done about global climate change? You can tell me inaction is all due to the other party. Have you been willing to campaign on issues that are socially just but politically unpopular? What do you stand for with passion and resolve except for yourself and re-election to a cushy job that enables you to remain isolated from the growing suffering of the people you are theoretically obligated to represent?

chip in

Photo Credit: screen shot one of today’s email appeals (10/23/2014)

You say you want me to chip in $3 or $5 for the most immediate attack from the “evil” opponents. What have you done in the past four or six years to try to bridge differences and define a clear vision of a more hopeful future that is based on common ground? Surely you can come up with more than let’s just keep going the way we are with our foot on the fracked gas. If you can’t, I know hundreds and thousands and millions of people who do have pieces of the answers. But all you ask for is their money… Your actions do show what really matters to you – perpetuating your own privilege and the illusion that you really are a leader who stands for something other than your own self-interest.

Sorry if I sound bitter. After all, my taxes help pay for your salary, health insurance costs and retirement benefits.  All I can really afford to give you on top of that is my own two cents…

twocents

Photo Credit: Two Cents

 

*Democratic-Farm-Labor Party

Copyright Notice: © Carol A. Hand and carolahand, 2013-2016. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Carol A. Hand and carolahand with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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About Carol A. Hand

What matters are not the titles I’ve held or university degrees I earned or the size of a house or bank account. It’s really what I’ve learned from ordinary people like me whom I’ve met along the way. They taught me to live with gratitude and give thanks for each new day.
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33 Responses to Actions Speak Louder Than Words

  1. Joan Treppa says:

    I am so with you Carol!! As usual it has been over the top ridiculous! And I know that they ARE NOT sympathetic to my cause! Hell, they wouldn’t touch it with someone else’s ten foot pole!!! Take care my friend. I’m off to my rally in Green Bay tomorrow morning…It will be awesome, in their face kinda fun!!!! Chuckle chuckle!

    Like

    • carolahand says:

      Joan, thank you for your comments and for the important work you do! (I did share your press release about the rally in Green Bay on facebook – some of my friends live near by. I send my best wishes for success.)

      Like

      • Joan Treppa says:

        Oh, that was so nice of you to do that for me. I appreciate the gesture as well as YOU very much! I hope to meet some of your friends. Please tell them to approach me if they are able to make it. I’ll send a hug home with them for you…

        Liked by 1 person

  2. mandy says:

    So well said, Carol! As a matter of fact, I’d like to make a flyer out of this post and hand it to the folks politicking at my door almost daily. Or stick it in the return (with your donation) envelopes that arrive in my mailbox with empty promise. Oops. Do I sound bitter 🙂 Again, well said!

    Liked by 2 people

  3. desilef says:

    Fundraising isn’t governing! I tell them I have to put my limited resources to providing support to the people the government has abandoned.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Good for you, Carol. How did the canvasser respond to your criticisms?

    Like

    • carolahand says:

      Thank you for your comments, Robert. The canvasser was actually excited and agreed with me. He described some of the TV ads he found particularly appalling and stayed awhile to tell me about his major, environmental studies. I’m convinced so many more people would become politically engaged if politicians had anything substantive and visionary to say.

      Liked by 2 people

  5. Debra says:

    He is leaving a terrible legacy behind. Not only on specific issues (too numerous to mention here) but worse of all he has made all these policies that hurt ordinary people truly bi-partisan. He is more right than Richard Nixon ever was. How bizarre is that?

    Like

    • carolahand says:

      Important insights, Debra. I do remember seeing a graphic that showed just how far “right” politicians in the U.S. have become over time – both Clinton and Obama were classified as far more “conservative” than Eisenhower (and Nixon). The legacy that is most troubling to me is how hopeful people were when Obama was elected, and how disengaged, untrusting, and downright cynical many have become.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Debra says:

        I agree and that is frightening. A huge swathe of caring people have given up on the political process. That could mean the oligarchs will gain even more power at the expense of everyone else. And it is weird because polls say that on things like environmental issues people overwhelmingly support positive change — even among conservative Republicans. We really do need more people with courage to run for office.

        Liked by 1 person

        • carolahand says:

          Yes, we do need more politicans with courage. I think we might do well to learn from ALEC – it might be more effective to transform policies at the local and state levels first. Yet it sees to be a daunting task to wrest power from corporations and billionaires. (Courageous, visionary politicians at the federal level seem to have short lives.)

          Liked by 1 person

        • Debra says:

          Yes yes yes. At the very least we should learn from them how they managed to appropriate so much power. They played the long game beginning with Reagan, used dog whistles to gather the like-minded and invested enormous resources into local policies. Those are all good starting points. It is daunting but one of my favourite essays by Zinn reminds me that if there is one thing we can expect from people it is that we have this enormous capacity to do the unexpected. Big changes can happen nearly overnight.

          Like

        • carolahand says:

          I so appreciate your creativity and hopeful enthusiasm 🙂

          Like

  6. Jeff Nguyen says:

    At least they weren’t proselytizing. On second thought, I guess they were. Democrat-Farm Labor Party…it’s like a triple oxymoron.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. sachemspeaks says:

    Reblogged this on sachemspeaks and commented:
    She’s using two cents, here’s two more, thank-you Carol!

    Like

  8. LadyPinkRose says:

    Carol, I purposely stay away from politics for that is not my “mission” in life I have been called for. That is not to say I turn a blind eye to the travesty that is happening, for which it continually never ceases to shock me as to how far “south” things have gone. I don’t recognize this country any more and I don’t understand this world either any more. And all this sliding downhill has occurred within what? 40 years? 30? I don’t believe one word out of any politician’s mouth as my Heart continually sinks as I see the “power of the people” diminish more and more. I am relieved to know there are those like you, who are taking an active stand, and for this I am so very grateful to you for. May all of us, who are working for the Greater Good, work together, all doing our parts, to bring this world to the Land of Love. With Love, Amy

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I think it’s becoming increasingly apparent in much of western society that are sham elections have little more impact on the running of society than American Idol. The reason people stay home in droves on election day is because a choice between two pro-corporate millionaires who don’t give a flying fuck about us bears no resemblance to true democracy.

    I have always been a great friend of direct democracy, where people run society themselves. I’ve always had great reservations that representative democracy can ever work – at least in a capitalist society. It’s far too easy for the banks who create the money and the big corporations who own the means of production to corrupt.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Go Carol! That isn’t bitterness, that’s righteous anger.

    And it’s true what LadyPinkRose suggests, ‘all this sliding downhill has occurred within… 40 years.’ It is almost too shocking and terrifying to absorb. Our beautiful country could have been evolving during that time, instead of going backwards.

    One thing gives me hope, though. All the work that is being done to amend the Constitution – to get big money out of politics, to restore democracy. I think the amendment will happen within 10 years. The people’s anger will push it through.

    Like

    • carolahand says:

      Yes, righteous anger is certainly needed these days. I love your insight – “Our beautiful country could have been evolving during that time, instead of going backwards.” I continue to meet so many kind and thoughtful people online and in person. It astounds me that we all have so little power to stop the backward movements. Yes, the rule of money needs to end!

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Robbie says:

    Amen Sister!!!! I am so sick of politicians…when they ( not saying any names) take vacations that cost the taxpayers MILLIONS /BILLIONS of dollars + the people are hurting! People are going without treatment for illiness, can’t put food on the table , + our leaders are WASTING money on “stuff” they don’t need….GRRRRRR..okay…I had to deal with my frustration for I have been an “independent” since the 70’s and I quite watching the news for the reason it just upset me too much. I am not a big tv watcher , but my husband + I love watching shows that make fun of Washington…here are two I love to watch..

    I have learned to laugh + it helps deal with the stupidity….but i have FAITH + know there are “good people” out there making “good things happen,” just not these people:-) But I keep on doing what I can:-) + it all helps!

    Liked by 1 person

    • carolahand says:

      I love your sense of humor, Robbie. I’m not sure what it will take to get the money and hard-heartedness out of politics at the federal level. I really think the only answer is to focus on transformation at the local and state level. In the meantime, laughing at the absurdity helps…

      Liked by 1 person

      • Robbie says:

        I know…humor helps but we do need to clean up that city! I will vote + try to pick the best person + hope…for I have faith things will always get better..in the meantime I have to laugh for anger is not a good emotion to live with….the best part in these shows is it shows really how shallow people “get” or maybe they were always that way..hmmm…I know there are good people that try and do good things but I wonder if being in that craziness make them do things they really would not….tough subject you tackled!
        I recommend a glass of wine and one of these shows while you have a chuckle at the absurdity-lol

        Liked by 1 person

  12. I just heard a reputable male reporter, play clips of women crying about Trump, He also said, NBC is now a conspiracy station. Hmm. he goes to describe that is the same “mental disease” women got during the Bush admin. We are behaving “hysterically” . Unfounded Trump Hysteria. A mental condition….I came here looking for the witch craft section. Because, I am about to bust out my broom stick and go beat some people.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Isn’t it amazing that any one publicizes such demeaning non-sense and dares to call it newsworthy, S.? I’ve just spent 3 days without an internet connection and I must admit it was refreshing to be away from all of the distressing mean-spirited foolishness the media use to create fear, anger, and hopelessness. Instead, I began reading “When things fall apart: Heart Advice for difficult times,” by Pema Chodron. It’s a thought-provoking book, so unlike the mainstream media. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • Does this work to communicate?

        On Thu, Apr 13, 2017 at 4:02 PM, Voices from the Margins wrote:

        > Carol A. Hand commented: “Isn’t it amazing that any one publicizes such > demeaning non-sense and dares to call it newsworthy, S.? I’ve just spent 3 > days without an internet connection and I must admit it was refreshing to > be away from all of the distressing mean-spirited foolishnes” >

        Liked by 2 people

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