Questions about Progressive Congress's Speakout event on July 23 in Seattle and Progressive Action Fund are sponsoring a public event on July 23 at South Seattle Community College. Here is their blurb (copied from a pdf file they sent):

It’s not often that lawmakers come to our community to ask directions, but that’sexactly what they’re doing.

Our community has been hit hard by the economy. For too long, Congress has
taken us in the direction of tax cuts for the rich and bailouts for banks and big
business. That has only put us farther down the road to ruin. We know the road to solving this crisis is through making corporations and CEOs pay their fair share so our government can use our tax dollars to create good jobs—not corporate bailouts.

Members of Congress who are interested in getting things back on the right track are coming to Seattle to get directions from us; to hear about our experiences and our ideas for fixing this crisis. It’s our turn to make sure they hear what we need—good jobs for our community.

Bring your neighbors and family and let’s make our voices heard. Together we can help Congress get back on the road to recovery.

Saturday, July 23
Noon (doors open at 11:30 a.m.)

Brockey Conference Center,
South Seattle Community College
6000 16th Ave. SW

One part of this that confuses me is the statement “Members of Congress who are interested in getting things back on the right track are coming to Seattle to get directions from us.” This is unclear. Who’s “us”? What members of Congress? Where in Seattle? Will members of Congress be at the event on July 23? Do the members of Congress really want to “get directions from us”? My guess is that lawmakers will be on recess and will return to their districts all over the country. I doubt that lawmakers will be at the event.

Also, what exactly is the purpose of the meeting?

[Added on July 19, 2011: Now it’s clear: July 23 Speakout event to include Jim McDermott]

According to their About page, “Progressive Congress was built at the intersection between the Congressional Progressive Caucus (CPC) and the progressive movement to connect the progressive movement, ideas, and Congress. Founded by the leadership and staff of the CPC and key leaders in the progressive movement, the board includes a broad cross-section of the progressive community in the United States and the leadership of the CPC.”

Their Progressive Messaging Projects have poll-tested suggestions about how progressives should talk to undecideds about taxes, deficits, health care and other issues.

Progressive Congress’s president and executive director is Washington State’s own Darcy Burner, who ran unsuccessfully against Rep. Dave Reichert in the 8th CD in 2006 and 2008.

Progressive Congress’s board of directors seems good.

The organization seems useful, but it’s unclear to me how it’s supposed to mesh with the hundreds of other progressive advocacy groups competing for our support.   MoveOn and VanJones, for example, are trying to organize a mass movement. PDA is always doing good work too.   Progressive Congress itself has a ProgressiveMap project, which is “a free encyclopedia about the people, issues, and groups shaping the progressive movement. Begun in 2009 and launched in 2010, ProgressiveMap now has 880 articles, as of today, thanks to interested contributors like you.”

Ideally, the Democratic Party would do its job and fight against conservative policies. But since the Democrats are complicit in corruption and militarism, we need all these progressive advocacy groups. Many good Democrats know this is so. If progressives overthrew the centrist Dems, the way the religious conservatives and Teabaggers kicked out centrist Republicans. we’d be way better off. But don’t take this to mean that the progressive Left is as crazy as the Tea Party Right.  In science and in society, there are winners and losers, right and wrong. To determine the truth about global warming, we don’t split the difference between climate scientists and climate-change deniers. To determine the truth about the origins of humanity, we don’t split the difference between evolutionary biologists and believers in creationism. Nor should we say, as you often hear, that the progressive left is as crazy as the Tea Party right.

Anyone know more about this Progressive Congress meeting?

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