Justin Krebs's blog

Winning Hearts and Minds in Idaho Falls

The theory of change behind Living Liberally is that you can sometimes connect to people through culture in ways you can't simply through argument.

Look to Idaho Falls -- a chapter in one of the nation's reddest states -- for proof of that.

Idaho Falls sponsored a Screening Liberally event in December with the local Occupy group: “Inside Job” was shown with a panel discussion afterwards. Two GOP State Representatives attended, and one of them -- Rep. Janice McGeachin -- voted this week against an anti-Occupy bill in committee. In her statement, she mentioned the movie as her reason for doing so.

Our gatherings can speak to new people, can change hearts and minds and can make a difference. Thanks, Rep McGeachin and thank you to the liberals of Idaho Falls.

Share with us your stories of how your Liberally chapter has helped your community, or what you love about being a member of Living Liberally.

Leading Liberally Update

In December, we announced our partnership with the Candidate Project, an effort to urge progressives to run for office and to help them run better campaigns. Their "2,012 for 2012" campaign is working with MoveOn, Rebuild The Dream, Color of Change, Democracy for America, CREDO and other partners to field a movement of liberals to run for local office all over the country.

We're proud of Chris Blazejewski, our Providence host and Rhode Island State Rep; Greg Leding, our Fayeteville leader who has been elected to the Arkansas State Assembly; Jason Haas, a Milwaukee county commissioner who left the helm of his local DL group for that new role; and Mid-Cities, Texas, host Kathleen Thompson who ran for city council.

So we urged all of our members to run. While we don't endorse candidates, we all want more, better progressives...and we're excited to see more of our Liberally family Leading Liberally.

Well, 49 candidates have signed on through Living Liberally -- and more are coming all the time. In fact, the 2,012th candidate in this project was one of our own: Nathan from Michigan.

We'll keep you posted on this next generation of proud liberal leaders and how Running Liberally looks in the months ahead.

Share with us your stories of how your Liberally chapter has helped your community, or what you love about being a member of Living Liberally.

Wedding Liberally: An LA Story

Who says liberals are lonely?

Recently two members of the Los Angeles chapter of Drinking Liberally tied the knot. Holly and Ravi met at DL -- proving that we do build lasting relationships when we share politics and share an evening together.

You might not think to call LA the "City of Love," but hey must be putting something in the beer at the chapter in Santa Monica. This is the second marriage to come from the group. Chapter hosts Mary and David became co-hosts in Living Liberally and in living together after meeting at the group.

Nashville, Cincinnati, St. Louis, Des Moines, New York and other chapters all can boast of their own tales of Drinking Liberally nuptials. And there are even a few little Liberals being born of these unions. For some, it's time to start Parenting Liberally.

Share with us your stories of how your Liberally chapter has helped your community, or what you love about being a member of Living Liberally.

Half-Time in America; Half-Baked in the GOP

Clint Eastwood spoke of half-time in America
driving some conservatives half-mad at this icon
since they half-hoped Obama would let Detroit fail.

Republican voters' half-hearted support for Romney
means this primary isn't even half-over
as half-crazed right-wingers deliver half the delegates
to anyone else they can halfway tolerate.

And more Americans find half-time & full-time work
but we're still only seeing half-measures from DC
as the Tea Party's half-baked ideas fully stall Congress.

While Clint tells us it's half-time in America.
on the Right, it's half-hearted, half-crazed & half-baked.

If you have a half a mind to mix politics & fun,
spend some of your night with all good company
at your local progressive social club.

Find - or start - a chapter near you.

Of Groundhogs and the Grand Old Party

Another brutal primary with more shadowy money,
more vicious attacks from more unaccountable allies,
and a rich guy outspending another rich guy wins again.

We hear the same plans to help corporations & the 1%,
the same coded class war against the least among us,
the same fear-mongering around a war against religion
to distract & divide us & drum up the conservative base.

Another plea from Rick Santorum to be anyone's VP.
Another vow from Ron Paul that he'll win the next one.
Another smirk by Romney & grimace by Gingrich.

The GOP makes every day feel like Groundhog Day,
They're trapped in repetition & we're trapped with them
…which makes sense: they are a party that prefers
to relive the past rather than make any progress forward.

Until Newt sees his shadow and runs back to his hole,
find escape and entertainment in an enjoyable evening
at your local progressive social club.

Find - or start - a chapter near you.

State of the Union vs. State of Delusion

The President calls for a fairer tax system
while a GOP multi-millionaire candidate
pays a low tax rate, says $350k "isn't very much"
& can't guess his own wealth within $50 million.

The Prez talks investment in jobs & education
while the GOP front-runner calls his vision
divisive, radical Kenyan anti-colonialism.

Obama articulates a diverse & inclusive America
while a would-be rival revives culture wars against
gay rights, women's rights & even contraception.

One night we gather to hear the State of the Union,
then back to the non-stop State of Delusion:
the GOP primary, where delusions daily get deeper.

Discuss the delusions, the debates & down a drink
as you share an evening of ideas and imbibing
at your local progressive social club.

Find - or start - a chapter near you.

State of the Union 2012 - Parties and Games

Tonight, as the President takes to the podium in the Capitol, members of Drinking Liberally take to bars across America. This is the 9th year running that Drinking Liberally is hosting State of the Union Watch Parties, and you're invited to join.

Find your local chapter on our DL map and see if they've promoted a special watch party for tonight.

And whether you're a host or a guest, bring some games to your local event.

Here's a link to SOTU Bingo Cards created by Kathleen Thompson, our host in Mid-Cities Texas. These cards are pre-designed for you to print-and-play.

Check them out and print them out here.

And our Baltimore host, Robyn Henry, took it a different route: she supplied the words and you can fill in your own Bingo cards.

Her instructions: "Before the speech, fill in each space on a 5x5 grid from the choices below. During the speech, mark off each thing as it is heard or seen. The first person to BINGO and the person closest to blackout will win a prize."

Reward responsibility, Hard work, Bush Tax Cuts, Middle class, Fair share, Fair shake, Fair play, Progress, Blueprint, Buffett Rule, Manufacturing, Alternative Energy, Energy Independence, China, Iran, Insourcing, Equal Opportunity, "The state of our union is strong!", Unemployment, "special guest," Bipartisan Standing Ovation, Partisan Standing Ovation, Vice President Biden Yawns, Mic Check, Speaker Boehner is orange, Speaker Boehner cries, Michelle Obama's "guns," Nancy Pelosi looking unhappy, Arab Spring, Security, Budget, Diplomacy, Deficit, Energy, Pakistan, Private Sector, Elections, Food Security, Keystone XL, Partnership, Transparency, Environment, Results, HIV / AIDS, Hecklers, Someone wears a red suit

Vultures in Eagles' Clothing

The GOP rivals play proud patriotic eagles
but attack working families, insult the less fortunate
& use code, condescension & coercion to divide America,
-- it's not only Romney who can be called a vulture.

Big Media conglomerates claim to fight piracy
when they behave as predators by nature:
they lock content, block creativity, knock competition
& make off with the bounty before the ship sinks.

Pipeline proponents claim they'd pump up prosperity,
but the Tar Sands project would have been the leech
on our environment, economy & our way of life.

Though they talk proud, look pleasant, smile pretty
pirates aren't patriots, leeches don't love America
& beware of vultures in eagles' clothing.

Debrief the debates, predict the primaries
& lift liberal libations with like-leaning lefties
at your local progressive social club.

Find - or start - a chapter near you.

Is the GOP Possessed, or Just Occupied?

Is the GOP Possessed or Just Occupied?

Newt Gingrich, longtime crusader for Big Business,
now rails against Romney's work at Bain,
and talks about the wrong kind of capitalism.

Rick Santorum, who represented corporate interests,
starts stumping in support of blue collar workers
and paints Mitt as an abusive corporate boss.

Ron Paul, supposedly an extreme free marketeer,
thinks it unfair how Romney's crew has fared
in a market that seems to be working for them.

These fighting words sound more at home
in Zuccotti Park than in the Republican Primary,
Is the GOP possessed? Or are they just Occupied?

Share your disbelief, your dreams & a drink or two
with like-minded libation-lifting liberals
at your local progressive social club.

Find - or start - a chapter near you.

Mitt "Wins," Rick Grins, Newt Sins

Mitt spent far more than any other candidate
to come out only 8 votes ahead in Iowa,
with fewer votes and a smaller share than in '08.
If that's winning, then losing sounds OK.

GOP voters dislike Romney so much that they voted
for a guy who'd languished in last & who they chose
because they already knew and discarded everyone else.
If that's a compliment, Rick, keep smiling…for now.

Perry's out, then back in; Bachmann's in, then backed out
& Newt announced he'll break his 11th Commandment
-- "don't speak ill of fellow Republicans" --
which is fine, since he broke the 7th a few times already.

Mitt "wins," Rick grins, Newt sins
as his quest for vengeance begins.
This is starting to get interesting.

Share your reactions and your predictions
as you share a pint and share the night
at your local progressive social club.

Find - or start - a chapter near you.

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