Tuesday, March 15, 2011

On Petals And Metal, Or, Today And Tomorrow, Street Actions Are Afoot

For the past couple months I have been talking a lot about “taking it back”, and I have two great chances for you to do just that over the next two days.

One of them involves actions that are taking place all over the USA—but the other is a very special and particular event which will be taking place in Vancouver, British Columbia on Wednesday.

This’ll be a short story…but by the time we’re done, you’ll have stuff to do this week.

A young lady visitor on the set of “Never Give a Sucker an Even Break” asked W.C.Fields if he liked flowers. Fields replied he was very fond of Four Roses.

--Ronald J. Fields, from the book W.C.Fields By Himself

So here’s what’s up:

Tomorrow, MoveOn.org and a ton of others are planning “Defend the American Dream” rallies around the country…in fact, as of the time this was written there are 277 events planned, all on the same day.

A few weeks ago Social Security workers held “informational picketing” events at Social Security offices around the country to make Americans aware that proposed Republican budget cuts would create huge “bumps in the road” for those who want their Social Security checks to go out on time, or who might like to speak to an employee on the same day they call the office.

That’s part of tomorrow’s program as well, with Washington DC’s office a sort of starting point from which our anger with what’s been going on can spread.

So if you’re in DC tomorrow, right after office hours, the event will take place at 5:30 PM at the Social Security office at 2100 M Street NW, and there is a handy “meetup page” to give you more information if you need it.

But maybe you’re not going to be in DC.

We still got you covered: this page right here will let you enter a zip code and find an event near you.

For example, there’s a Rally at the San Diego County Administration Center—which, as y’all know, is maybe eight blocks from the end of the runway at Lindbergh Field—and Jim Brown and Virginia Huschke, who are putting on the event, report that they had 1000 people show up last week at the same place for the same thing…so you gotta be there.

Maybe you’re in Michigan…and if you can get to the Veterans’ Memorial in Niles after work tomorrow, United Steel Workers Local 13729 and MoveOn Michiana want you. The Memorial, for those unaware, is located at Waterfront Park, right by the Main Street Bridge and across the street from Massimo’s Pizza—which means afterwards you can pick up a meatball sub or somethin’ and not even have to cook dinner. (Maybe it’s just me, but I am not down for the ranch pizza.)

If you’re in Mobile, Alabama, swing by the cannon at Mobile Memorial Park (on Government Street), where hundreds of protesters intend to use the cannon to take the city hostag—no, wait, I made that part up.

They are intending to have a lovely demonstration, however…and if you think Alabama is an unlikely place for this kind of rally, think again: folks who might have been big on the Tea Party a few months ago are starting to think again, and this is a great chance to help those with seeds of doubt do a bit of “germinating”, as it were.

So that’s tomorrow’s set of events…but what about that Vancouver thing we were talking about?

Well this is good.

The Yes Men” are well-known pranksters, and some of their past efforts to “correct corporate identities” have been downright diabolical, including the time they pretended they were the Dow Chemical Corporation, and they held a press conference to announce that Dow was assuming all liability related to the industrial accident at Bhopal, India, which killed at least 3400 people…which, naturally, forced Dow to go on TV and immediately announce that the people of Bhopal could basically go suck an egg, because Dow wasn’t actually planning on forkin’ over a dime on their behalf.

Now on Wednesday, at noon, in beautiful downtown Vancouver BC, a prank is going down…and The Yes Men want you to help make it work…and they want you in costume.

Can you make yourself look like a reporter? They’re particularly looking for you to bring a camera—and if it’s on a tripod, that’s even better.

If you resemble a “businessperson at lunch”, they want you too.

Even random “crowd folks” are wanted in a “come as you are” kind of a look.

Now the only hitch we have on this is the meetup information, which they were supposed to send on Monday. For the moment, with no better information available, why not plan to hang out at the Downtown Vancouver Library around 11AM, and I will either update this story to add new information, or I’ll keep sending them messages to arrange for someone to come by the Library and find the group of “reporters” and “businesspeople at lunch” and “random crowd members”.

I told you this would be a short one, so that’s the deal: after work today, there are “Defend the American Dream” rallies all over the country for you to attend, which can be found right here, and on Wednesday, The Yes Men will be putting on one of their very special pranks in Downtown Vancouver—and they want you to come on down and join in the fun.

“Taking It Back” is important, but there’s no reason we can’t have a good time while we’re doing it, and that’s what these events are all about…so go have a good day at work—but on the way home, take some time to stand up for your country.

And if you can work it out, bring the kids.
After all, a really good education starts at home…and this, this thing we’re doing right here…this is education.

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