Monthly Archives: August 2015

Enjoy a beer, Rock for Hope, and hear Russ Feingold – Sunday in Verona

Featured Speaker Russ Feingold


Mutual Aid Networks (MAN) Summit – Aug. 20-28 Fun, informative events

People around the world have been working to build a new economy to serve people’s and communities’ needs as the old one fails–experimenting with timebanking, cooperative saving and investment, complementary currencies, cooperative ownership, other forms of mutual credit, and more.

Mutual Aid Networks are autonomous organizations that can have any organizational form and are based on Core Principles adapted from timebanking, commons governance, and cooperative principles. Southcentral Wisconsin’s MAN is planning a week of fabulous events–the MAN Up Summit–to launch itself and celebrate economic cooperation in our area. Check out this partial list of activities (The Yes Men are coming!):

  • Welcome reception with live piano music and food from the Green Owl Café; a Community Justice meal with activists from Madison, St. Louis, Detroit, Chicago and beyondcatered by Cafe Costa Rica;
  • YesMenMAN Launch Party at High Noon Saloon, featuring The Yes Men! plus Bayo Akomolafe of International Alliance for Localization, and introducing MAN pilot sites. Music by Wendy Schneider, Stephanie Rearick, and Shawn Neary (Cloud Cult).
  • A series of training workshops in Sociocracy with James Priest from Thrive-In Community from the UK: plus workshops on cooperative law (David Sparer from Herrick & Kasdorf, LLP and Anne Reynolds of UW Center for Cooperatives.), the art of hosting (to celebrate a year of the Allied Coop,with Allied Coop leaders plus Lina Cramer & Renee Jackson from Wisdom Exchange in Chicago); yoga (with Mary Bue); community savings and investment (with Janelle Orsi from Sustainable Economies Law Center); and more;
  • Dancing on the Monona Terrace Rooftop with disco band VO5;
  • Rummage Sale for Justice:
  • Community Justice Storytelling/Harvest with Lina Cramer & Renee Jackson from Wisdom Exchange in Chicago;
  • Skill shares (teaching each other skills); and
  • MORE!

Check out the details of the MAN Up Summit and register at this website.


Transit meetings: For more freedom…stronger economy…healthier communities…stronger region

The Dane Transit Coalition ( invites you to attend one in a series of listening sessions  to explore how the county might support and/or enhance public transit anywhere in Dane County. DaneTransit works to make world-class transit part of a more sustainable, equitable, and prosperous Dane County; the meetings are sponsored by the Transit subcommittee of Dane Countyʼs Board of Supervisors.WhyTransitMatters
While supporting certain transportation services for people with disabilities and seniors, the county does not as yet fund or provide any general public transit services in the metropolitan area.

Please spread the word, and consider attending a meeting in your area to share your ideas about how the county might help improve transit:

McFarland/Stoughton/Monona/Southeast Madison
Thursday, August 20, 6:00-7:45pm – E.D. Locke Library, 5920 Milwaukee St, McFarland

Sun Prairie/East Madison
Monday, August 24, 6:00-7:45pm – Westside Community Center, 2598 W Main St, Sun Prairie

Tuesday, August 25, 6:00-7:45pm – DeForest Public Library, 203 Library St, DeForest

Springfield Corners/Cross Plains/Middleton/West Madison
Wednesday, August 26, 6:00-7:45pm – Middleton Public Library, 7425 Hubbard Avenue, Middleton

Verona/Fitchburg/Oregon/South Madison
Monday, August 31, 6:00-7:45pm – Candlewood Suite Meeting Rm, 5421 Caddis Bend, Fitchburg

Action Needed to Protect Nonpartisan Elections Administration in Wisconsin!

Save the Gov’t Accountability Board! Common Cause has a great strategy for supporting the GAB: Bring intense pressure on the 24 Republican legislators who just eight years ago voted to create the GAB in the wake of the disgraceful caucus scandals. This link contains a short, useful history.

GAB+Offc+logo_250Contact these legislators and tell them not to flip-flop on their previous GAB support. Contact any friends or relatives of either party–this is a NONPARTISAN good for the State of Wisconsin–and tell them to do the same. And contact your own legislators, too.

Current Republican legislators who voted to establish the  Government Accountability Board in 2007:
1 – Robert Cowles Sen. District 3 –Green Bay
2 – Albert Darling – Sen. District 8 –River Hills
3 – Scott Fitzgerald – Sen. District 13 –Juneau
4 – Sheila Harsdorf – Sen. District 10 –River Falls
5 – Mary Lazich – Sen. District 28 –New Berlin
6 – Luther Olsen – Sen. District 14 –Ripon
7 – Jerry Petrowski – Sen. District 29 –Marathon (in Assembly)
8 – Steve Nass – Sen. District 11 –Whitewater (in Assembly)
9 – Frank Lasee – Sen. District 1 –Bellevue (in Assembly)
10 – Leah Vukmir – Sen. District 5 –Wauwatosa (in Assembly)
11 – Roger Roth – Sen. District 19 –Appleton (in Assembly)
12 – Terry Moulton – Sen. District 23 –Chippewa Falls (in Assembly)
1 – Al Ott – Ass. District 3 –Forest Junction
2 – Gary Tauchen – Ass. District 6 –Bonduel
3 – Jim Ott – Ass. District 23 –Mequon
4 – John Murtha – Ass. District 29 –Baldwin
5 – Jeff Mursau – Ass. District 30 –Crivitz
6 – Joel Kleefisch – Ass. District 38 –Oconomowoc
7 – Kevin Petersen – Ass. District 40 –Waupaca
8 – Joan Ballweg – Ass. District 42 –Markesan
9 – Robin Vos – Ass. District 63 -­‐Rochester
10 – Samantha Kerkman – Ass. District 61 –Genoa City
11 – John Nygren – Ass. District 89 –Marinette
12 – Lee Nerison – Ass. District 96 –Westby

Grassroots groups invited to co-sponsor Robert Reich’s appearance in Madison

The Middleton Action Team, Madison Institute, and Oregon Area Progressives are seeking additional co-sponsors for Robert Reich’s appearance in Madison on Saturday, October 24 as part of the Wisconsin Book Festival.  He will be speaking at the downtown Madison library; the time has not yet been announced.

Ron Biendsel of the Middleton Action Team has written that co-sponsorship of the event would entail “no cost, just a willingness to be listed and promote the event.” MAT is  also planning a followup event focusing on what people can do to reduce the negative impacts of Income Inequality. If  your grassroots group is interested in co-sponsoring either Reich’s speech or the followup event, contact Ron at .RobertReichRobert Reich is Professor of Public Policy at the University of California at Berkeley and Senior Fellow at the Blum Center for Developing Economies, was Secretary of Labor in the Clinton administration. Time Magazine named him one of the ten most effective cabinet secretaries of the twentieth century. He has written thirteen books, including the best sellers “Aftershock” and “The Work of Nations.” His latest, “Beyond Outrage,” is now out in paperback. He is also a founding editor of the American Prospect magazine and chairman of Common Cause. He’s got a great website: check it out!

Movie Night in Waunakee – “Ivory Tower”

GROW is hosting a free showing of the award-winning documentary about higher education, Ivory Tower, by director Andrew Rossi, on Sunday night, August 9, 6PM, at the Waunakee EMS Community Room, 201 N. Klein Street in Waunakee.This perspective-changing film explores the systemic problems, historical shifts and organizational changes that have caused Americans to switch from seeing higher education as the classical model of a “rehearsal space for democracy” to seeing it as a commercial exchange, with students and their parents as “customers.”

IvoryTowerOne reviewer wrote,This information-packed film … doesn’t simply ask whether a four-year degree offers a worthwhile “investment” for college students who come out of their education saddled with massive debt (as the film’s advertising suggests), but asks how a country that struggles between the forces of democracy and capitalism invests culturally and ideologically in higher education in ways different from decades and centuries before.”

Join GROW on Sunday, and bring any friends who have kids headed for college! Discussion after the GROW movies is always lively and thought-provoking.