MDC DSA’S WASHINGTON SOCIALIST MONTHLY NEWSLETTER FOR DECEMBER 2018

UPFRONT ACTIVITY

Today, Friday, Nov. 30, NoVa branch coffee/happy hour at 6, Labor Working Group meets 6:30. Tomorrow, Saturday, Dec. 1, White Collar Organizing Discussion at 2; Publications Working Group at 2:30. Sunday, Dec. 2, Stomp Out Slumlords at 1:30; Endorsement Committee workshop at 2; Socialist Book Club at 3. Monday Dec. 3 Kojo’s show on Amazon HQ2 in NoVa, 6:30 PM (see below)

ACTION NOTES

The first chapter-wide candidate questionnaire workshop is taking place *this Sunday* from 2:30 PM to 4:30 PM at the Cleveland Park Library in DC. The objective of this workshop is to gather input on a set of standard, chapter-wide questions that will appear on electoral endorsement questionnaires. Here’s the Meetup link for this weekend’s event:
https://www.meetup.com/mdcdsa/events/256638042/

There’s also a Doodle poll underway for selecting a time to host the Virginia-specific workshop later on in December. Please fill out this poll if you’d like to attend that workshop: https://doodle.com/poll/acpdzqmvs2rmheay

And if you can’t make it on Sunday (or on the Virginia dates offered in the Doodle poll), you can submit suggested questionnaire items for discussion using this form:
https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSfgaEp-aamBnlGKNPgE3PjvcamUEUN2EsWtaF8N5n5zgL4jlg/viewform

I hope a lot of us can attend! Broad participation is what’s going to make these questionnaires strong. Please feel free to direct message me with questions, or comment on the thread for this message in the #electoral channel.

— Stu K.

>>And speaking of the post-Midterms electoral landscape in Maryland, the Democrats – with mixed results from their campaign – are having a real leadership battle culminating tomorrow (Sat. Dec. 1), as we see here: https://www.progressivemaryland.org/md_democratic_leadership_struggle_heats_up_for_dec_1_vote

>>And, in re the MD Dems leadership choice, a terrific follow-up commentary: https://www.progressivemaryland.org/reforming_md_s_democratic_party_ground_zero_may_be_saturday


From our MDC DSA #regionalAmazon campaign: As you may have seen, Kojo Nnamdi is putting on a town hall at Synetic Theater, 1800 South Bell Street Arlington, VA 22202 starting at 6:30 PM to talk about HQ2 and the regional impacts it could bring. 

We would like to ensure plenty of people attend who are concerned with the Virginia and Arlington handing out corporate welfare to the largest company in the world and what Amazon’s arrival will do for housing, schools and transit in our region.

Roshan Abraham of Our Revolution Arlington is slated to be a member of the panel to talk about community concerns but we want to pack the room to ensure that everyone in the room and listening to the recording broadcast a few days later know that he isn’t alone.  The show will involve some form of taking questions from the audience, but it’s not yet known how that will work.

What can you do?  

First and foremost, come on out!  This should be an interesting show.  The capacity of the room is estimated at 350 people and the seating is first come serve so I think we should all be able to get in.  Bring signs!

BE SURE TO RSVP USING THE LINK https://www.eventbrite.com/e/a-kojo-roadshow-on-amazons-new-headquarters-in-northern-virginia-tickets-52879174033

We will need people to be ready to either hand in questions to producers or get in line at microphones. We hope to hand out leaflets at the end/beginning of the program.

How to be heard in solidarity: The doors open at 6 PM, recording starts at 6:30 PM.  We will ask people to rally out in the lobby at 5:45 PM.  If you are planning to come later, just come on in and try to find a seat near us.

Instructions for parking or taking public transit: https://synetictheater.org/directions-parking-for-synetic-theater/

be aware of delays using Metro as the Yellow Line is shut down until Dec. 9th and you have to use the Blue Line to get to Crystal City: https://dc.curbed.com/2018/11/26/18112583/dc-metro-wmata-yellow-line-closure-repairs


CAMPAIGNS COUNCIL WILL KICK OFF JAN 17

“The inaugural Campaigns Council will take place on Tuesday, January 17th from 6:30pm-8:30pm at IPS (1301 Connecticut Ave. NW). If you are a lead organizer on any external campaign, please make sure you attend! Agenda TBA, but we will be electing our first Council Coordinator at this meeting. If you have any questions, please email steering-all@mdcdsa.org. Event link here: https://www.facebook.com/events/480501009024901/


Alexandria DASH drivers join union

[Monday, November 26] Drivers at Alexandria DASH — the city-owned transit company in Alexandria — overwhelmingly voted to join ATU Local 689 on November 15, saying “Thank you to the @ATUComm International team and everyone at Dash and Local 689 that made this happen!!! We were not intimidated by union busting, we are #UnionStrong.” Management had agreed to back off on their anti-union campaign after strong pressure from the labor movement and political allies. (from Union City)


 Socialists of Faith Caucus — What’s ahead for 2019?

 Socialists of Faith Caucus is in the middle of an exciting transition to holding its own events. Over the next few months, comrades intend to begin regular social events and political education efforts such as coffee hours and reading groups, Interfaith potlucks, and potential tours of houses of worship. We are particularly excited about the prospect of providing a primer to Metro DC DSA members on the relationship between religion and socialism through the Socialist Night School series.

Socialists of Faith also plans to continue its work with other faith-based organizing groups across the DMV, including Jewish Voice for Peace DC and the DC Justice for Muslims Collective. We welcome any and all comrades of faith (or of no faith) in what we hope will be a liberating new year.”

— Matthew A.


Child care at GBMs 

If you are thinking about bringing your kids to the next GBM, fill out this one-question pre-registration to let us know! https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSf0P_7HSW4CJEYHzwNyBJC1zlBFrWWh4JaoxyqKFJXFb20tzA/viewform?usp=sf_link

— Rachel M., Slack #parents channel for more


ARTICLES IN THIS ISSUE

>>Two chapter members’ takes on the Midterms:

>Adam Stromme, “The elections… give us an opportunity to contrast the narrative of the Democrats with reality, particularly on crucial issues like healthcare.”

>Kurt Stand, “the challenge facing DSA and other newly elected progressives is to build unity with mainstream Democrats (and even willing Republicans) to defend civil liberties while also organizing popular unity against corporate power, whether promoted by Democrats or Republicans.”

>>The local NFL team’s continuing racism – Bill Mosley on plans to deliver a petition about the racist branding that it seems owner Dan Snyder just can’t quit.

>>NoVa DSA’s 2019 – Elizabeth Stafford outlines what our Northern Virginia branch plans for the coming year.

>>An outgoing member of the Maryland General Assembly (and MDC DSA member) who was among the body’s most determined progressives will become a pro bono lobbyist for underserved progressive causes and groups.

>>The DC region’s newest museum, in Bill Mosley’s account, promotes police officers and their culture, well financed by elements who make big money from oppressive law enforcement.


MDC DSA CALENDAR FOR DECEMBER AND BEYOND

Follow links for more details or to RSVP

NOVEMBER

Friday NOV 30 6:30 PM

November Labor Working Group Meeting

1616 P Street NW, Suite 150, 1616 P Street NW, Suite 150, Washington, DC

We will be going over updates for our longer term projects: wage theft canvassing and organizing trainings, as well as solidarity campaigns. We will be meeting at 1616 P St NW, Suite 150. https://www.facebook.com/events/1907917676184662/

Friday NOV 30 6:00 PM

Metro-DC DSA NOVA Branch Coffee/Happy Hour 🌹

Detour Coffee, 946 N Jackson St, Arlington, va 22201

🌹No issues, no work, no worries – like a Red Panda, we can escape to just relax and enjoy socializing with our NOVA DSA friends. New members and friends are welcome!

DECEMBER

Saturday DEC 1 2:00 PM

White Collar Organizing Discussion

Northeast Neighborhood Library, 330 7th Street Northeast, Washington, DC 20002

Have you thought about unionizing your job but you’re not sure what to do? Come to this discussion! We will demystify the unionizing process, talk about the general organizing strategy, learn about employer opposition, and more! This is the third discussion offered by MDC DSA to help comrades organize their workplace.

Saturday DEC 1 2:30 PM

Publications Working Group Meeting

Lamond-Riggs Neighborhood Library, 5401 South Dakota Ave. NE, Washington, DC

If you’re interested in the Publications Working Group and/or the Publications Editorial Board, please come. If you have any questions, please contact the Washington Socialist at thesocialist@mdcdsa.org

Sunday DEC 2 1:30 PM

Stomp Out Slumlords: Anti-Eviction Canvass

L’enfant Metro Station, 7th Street and Maryland avenue entrance, Washington, DC

Come help us connect tenants facing eviction with legal resources! Tenants we speak to are twice as likely to go to court and fight their eviction, so every volunteer can make a big impact. We’re meeting at the L’Enfant metro — 7th St and Maryland Ave Exit.

Sunday DEC 2 2:30 PM

Endorsement Committee: Chapter-wide Questionnaire Workshop

Cleveland Park Library, 3310 Connecticut Ave NW, Washington, DC 20008

The purpose of this workshop is to generate a set of standard questions for chapter-wide use on political endorsement questionnaires. If you can’t make it during this time, there will still be an opportunity to submit discussion topics and/or draft questions. Here is the form to submit questions: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSfgaEp-aamBnlGKNPgE3PjvcamUEUN2EsWtaF8N5n5zgL4jlg/viewform

Sunday DEC 2 3:00 PM

December Socialist Book Club

Kogod Courtyard (at the Smithsonian American Art Museum and National Portait Gallery), 8th and F Streets, Washington, DC 20390-0001

We will be reading Creating an Ecological Society: Toward a Revolutionary Transformation by Fred Magdoff and Chris Williams on December 2nd from 3-

Tuesday DEC 4 7:00 PM

Steering Committee (remote meeting)

Steering Committee meetings are open to any MDC DSA member who would like to attend. This is a REMOTE ONLY meeting: please RSVP and message the hosts so we can make arrangements to get you the appropriate videoconferencing URL.

Wednesday DEC 5 7:00 PM

NOVA Branch DSA 🌹 Organizing Meeting

Arlington County Library – Shirlington Branch, 4200 Campbell Ave, Arlington, VA 22206

Welcome to our monthly NOVA DSA organizing and planning meeting. Please take a minute to read our short, brief, not very long, sort-of-illustrated NOVA DSA Socialist Meeting Participation Guidelines . We will be welcoming new members, continue discussing our planning for our current actions and campaigns including Migrant Justice action, a future Brake light Campaign and more.

Friday DEC 7 7:00 PM

MoCo DSA Happy Hour with 🌹Baltimore DSA🌹

The Crown, 1910 N. Charles St., Baltimore, MD

Baltimore DSA is hosting us for a happy hour on Friday, December 7! Please send us a message if you can assist in driving comrades to Baltimore, or if you need a ride. Hope you can join us!

Sunday DEC 9 3:00 PM

Metro DC DSA Monthly General Body Meeting

Friends Meeting of Washington, 2111 Florida Ave. NW, Washington, DC

The monthly meeting of the Metro DC Democratic Socialists of America! The agenda will be distributed the week before the meeting.

Tuesday DEC 11 6:30 PM

Ecosocialism (MDC DSA Night School)

Mt. Pleasant Library, 3160 16th St NW, Washington, DC 20010

In this session, we’re talking about ecosocialism, a framework for combining insights from the rich tradition of Marxist social analysis with scientific knowledge of our biosphere. How does ecosocialism help us understand how capitalism and overlapping systems of oppression fuel the kinds of extraction that now undermine basic systems of life on Earth?

Thursday DEC 13 7-8:30 PM
Ecosocialist Meeting: What’s the Deal with the Green New Deal?  @ Mt. Pleasant Library
It’s been an exciting month in climate politics! Join Metro DC DSA’s Ecosocialist Caucus to talk about the momentum suddenly building around a Green New Deal, what Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s plan actually entails, how folks are organizing around it in DC, and how you can plug in. More info will be up shortly on Facebook/Meetup.

Sunday DEC 16 2:00 PM

MoCo DSA 🌹General Branch Meeting

Silver Spring Public Library, 900 Wayne Avenue, Silver Spring, MD

Please join us for our December branch meeting! Help us build our vision for equality, democracy, and socialism in Montgomery County. **SPECIAL GUESTS** will be our MoCo DSA comrades who were just elected to the Maryland General Assembly – Gabriel Acevero and Vaughn Stewart! Gabe and Vaughn will join us for a discussion of legislative prospects in January.

Sunday DEC 16 1:30 PM

Stomp Out Slumlords: Anti-Eviction Canvass

L’enfant Metro Station, 7th Street and Maryland avenue entrance, Washington, DC

Come help us connect tenants facing eviction with legal resources! Tenants we speak to are twice as likely to go to court and fight their eviction, so every volunteer can make a big impact. We’re meeting at the L’Enfant metro — 7th St and Maryland Ave Exit.

Sunday DEC 16 4:00 PM

Socialist Feminism Reading Group: recognizing and resisting fascism

The Festival Center, 1640 Columbia Rd., NW, Washington, DC 20009

Please read our updated reading group Participation Guide and join us as we explore and discuss topics within Socialist Feminism. 🌹This month, our readings focus on recognizing and resisting fascism

Tuesday DEC 18  7:00 PM

Steering Committee

Institute for Policy Studies, 1301 Connecticut Avenue Northwest, Washington, DC 20036

Steering Committee meetings are open to any MDC DSA member who would like to attend. Please RSVP and message the hosts if you would like to join by videoconference so we can make arrangements to get you the appropriate URL.

Thursday DEC 20 6:30 PM

Hot Chocolate Happy Hour

The Festival Center, 1640 Columbia Rd., NW, Washington, DC 20009

We’re doing happy hour a little different this month! Join us at the Festival Center for a hot cocoa happy hour and cookie exchange! This is family friendly event and a great chance to meet and mingle with fellow comrades. No agenda, no work, and no politics… well, maybe a little politics. Bring a plate.

Wednesday DEC 26 6:30 PM

DSA Happy Hour

Franklin Hall, 1348 Florida Avenue Northwest, Washington,

Join us for our monthly happy hour! This is a great chance to meet and mingle with fellow comrades. No agenda, no work, and no politics… well, maybe a little politics. Happy hours, like most MDC DSA events, are open to members and non-members alike! Come join us in an informal setting to learn more […]

JANUARY

Saturday JAN 5 1:00 PM

Stomp Out Slumlords Business Meeting

Join the Stomp Out Slumlords campaign for our January business meeting. We’ll be planning out the next few months of canvassing and discussing how we can improve the effectiveness of our project. If you want to get more deeply involved in data collection and analysis, court support, building-level organizing, or any other aspects of the work.

Tuesday JAN 8 7:00 PM

Steering Committee (remote meeting)

Steering Committee meetings are open to any MDC DSA member who would like to attend. This is a REMOTE ONLY meeting: please RSVP and message the hosts so we can make arrangements to get you the appropriate videoconferencing URL.

Saturday JAN 12 2:00 PM

Childcare Training

Northeast Library, 330 7th St Ne, Washington,

Did you know Metro DC DCA offers child care during general body meetings? Help us build-up our child care volunteer force so we can expand to other events and meetings! We’ll meet to get volunteers comfortable with engaging with children and establishing a shared understanding of communal child care. Enroll here for our next training!

Sunday JAN 13 2:00 PM

MoCo DSA 🌹General Branch Meeting

Bethesda-Chevy Chase Regional Services Center, 4805 Edgemoor Lane, Bethesda,

Please join us for our January branch meeting! Help us build our vision for equality, democracy, and socialism in Montgomery County. Afterwards, we’ll adjourn to a local bar for a social hour. See you then! (Directions: The Bethesda-Chevy Chase Regional Services Center is located on the plaza level on Edgemoor Lane, above the street.

Sunday JAN 13 3:00 PM

Metro DC DSA Monthly General Body Meeting

Friends Meeting of Washington, 2111 Florida Ave. NW, Washington, DC

The monthly meeting of the Metro DC Democratic Socialists of America! The agenda will be distributed the week before the meeting.


EVENTS FROM OUR ALLIES

Saturday Dec 1 DC Labor Chorus at their 20th anniversary annual concert,  7:30 pm at the Tommy Douglas Conference Center Ballroom (former Meany Center), 10000 New Hampshire Ave Silver Spring, MD 20903 More here.

Sunday DEC 2, 12-2pm @Stanton Park, 500 C St NE

Extinction Rebellion US Launch: Declaration of Rebellion

You may have heard of the 6,000 climate activists who shut down London on Nov.17th—the Extinction Rebellion (XR)! On Sunday, Dec. 2, XR-USA is kicking off in solidarity by convening the First People’s Climate Emergency Congress in the streets near the Capitol. They will join people in 15 other countries around the globe by disrupting politics as usual in our country, setting up our own Congress in the street with tables and chairs for our own citizen experts to start developing the steps the government should be taking, starting with a Green New Deal. Some will risk arrest by refusing to stop our important work in the streets on Sunday, most will leave when the police make their third request. This event is the first action in a campaign of escalating nonviolent civil disobedience. More info on Facebook, or sign up here.

Monday DEC 3, 7-8:30pm @ US Capitol Visitors’ Center

Solving Our Climate Crisis: A National Town Hall

Sen. Bernie Sanders is hosting a national town hall on the global threat of climate change at the US Capitol, and you can be there in DC! Sanders will be joined by Congresswoman-Elect Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez; 350.org founder and author Bill McKibben; actress & activist Shailene Woodley; CNN host Van Jones; and other leading climate advocates. Seating is first-come, first-served—please arrive early to ensure a seat. ASL interpreters will be present at the event. No posters, signs, food, drink or large bags will be permitted. More details on Facebook.

Saturday, Dec. 8 Road Trip to Ashburn Va. To deliver petitions about local NFL team’s racist name/mascot. See article, this issue.

Sunday DEC 9, 6-9pm 

Monday 12/10, 8:30am-1pm @ US Capitol

Tell Democrats: We Need a Green New Deal

The Sunrise Movement of youth climate organizers is mobilizing support for the Green New Deal proposal championed by DSA members Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Rashida Tlaib—the first plan presented in Congress that actually deals with the scale and speed of action we need against the climate emergency. The current session of Congress ends on December 13, so this is our last chance to put the Green New Deal on the agenda for 2019. We’re within reach of making that a reality, but we need to make some noise! That’s why hundreds of us are descending on the U.S. Capitol to tell all Congressional Democrats: Reject fossil fuel money and support a Green New Deal. This plan wasn’t even on the map before November 13, and we’ve made it the talk of the nation. Now is the time to keep pushing. RSVP on Facebook and sign up here!

Saturday DEC 29 Progressive Maryland statewide meeting in Annapolis, 11 AM. Follow link for details; save the date now. RSVP

 

GOOD READS

Start with the national DSA’s new scrum site, introduced by the ND:

The revived Socialist Forum, DSA’s political discussion bulletin, has just launched! Here’s the full announcement from the Socialist Forum’s editorial committee. See below to find out more about Socialist Forum and how it relates to our other DSA venues.

In solidarity,

Maria Svart
DSA National Director

We’re pleased to announce the launch of DSA’s newest publication, Socialist Forum. DSA’s rapid growth over the last two years, and its “big-tent” character, has made it all the more important that we have this venue for serious, thorough, and non-sectarian political debates and discussions.

Much has also been written about the meaning of “democratic socialism” in the present. But for many years, our organization has lacked a space where these ideas could be discussed in such a fashion.

Socialist Forum is a revival of an old DSA journal of the same name. It’s meant to complement other DSA venues, including Democratic Left and our blog, DSA Weekly.

Unlike those venues, Socialist Forum has consciously been designed as a space for more theoretical reflection, intended to help develop a theory and practice of democratic socialism for the twenty-first century. We also want to contribute to the broader theoretical and political discussions on the Left.

Socialist Forum will appear quarterly, and feature long-form essays that address a specific question, topic, or theme in depth. The theme of the inaugural issue is the question of “political revolution” and its meaning in the U.S. today.

Published contributions will represent as wide a range of views in DSA as possible. The editorial board of Socialist Forum is composed of members with various points of view on important political questions, and it doesn’t adhere to a single theoretical or strategic perspective. Essays published in the journal reflect the views of their contributors. They are not intended to establish a DSA “party line” on any given issue.

Our goal is not just to publish a new issue of Socialist Forum every few months, but to integrate the publication into DSA’s ongoing political education work as much as possible. We hope the essays in the journal become the subjects of robust debate and discussion, that they generate constructive feedback and criticism, and that they act as the initial steps for an ongoing conversation about our common political project.

— The Socialist Forum Editorial Committee

AND MORE

>>Our comrade David D.’s interview in Dissent, conducted by Michael Kazin. https://www.dissentmagazine.org/blog/what-comes-after-the-blue-wave-a-qa-with-our-revolutions-david-duhalde

>>A solid critique of HQ2 by an opinion writer in the University of Maryland Diamondback: http://www.dbknews.com/2018/11/28/amazon-hq2-new-headquarters-dc-northern-virginia-crystal-city-taxes/

 

>>Governing, the magazine, is all about state and local government and usually has few pyrotechnics, so when it focuses on democratic socialists and new ideas about affordable housing, it’s very much worth noting. Hat tip to our comrades Jules B., who alerted us to this and Brandon P. who independently posted it on our ever- newsy #random Slack channel.

 

The Washington Socialist is the newsletter and editorial publication of Metro DC DSA. The views and opinions expressed here may not reflect those of the chapter, and publication of any information should not be considered an endorsement. For our chapter's official statements, please visit the Statements section of our main site.

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