Kaitlyn Kennedy is hosting May Monthly Meeting & Spotlight Saxony w/ Lewis Erckenbrecht 2021-04-08 02:40:38 -0400
Join us for our May Monthly Meeting, where we will cover important announcements and have a chance to chat among friends. We will also hear from our very own Lewis Erckenbrecht, who will be leading a discussion on the use and misuse of COVID-19 data and the challenges and opportunities of increasing quantification for political activism (see abstract below). All are welcome - even if you have never attended a meeting before! RSVP to receive the connection information.
The Nuclear Threat Initiative together with the Johns Hopkins University and Economist Intelligence Unit published the Global Health Security Index (GHSI) in October 2019. Releasing just two months before the first cases of Covid-19 became known in Wuhan, China, the index ranks 195 countries according to their capability of preventing and reacting to international public health threats and pandemics.
The GHSI received major international attention when former President Trump used the number 1 ranking of the United States at a press conference on February 26th, 2020, to justify his hesitant actions when the first cases of Covid-19 were recorded in the US.
However, the findings and the ranking of the index did not work as an indicator for the actual performance of countries in the Covid-19 pandemic. In fact, statistical analysis shows that the GHSI worked opposite from the way it was intended. The higher a country ranks in the index, the worse it performed during the pandemic and vice versa. The talk will address the reasons behind this phenomenon.
The failure of the GHSI showcases the (over)reliance of policy making on statistical data and the problems that emerge from it. Defining social problems through numbers, indicators or an index and linking political action to numerical performance leads to a quantification of politics that leaves blank spots in our perception and changes the way a political debate is carried out. Whoever controls the numbers controls the politics. The talk will use the GHSI as an example to introduce the emerging debate among political scientists about this fundamental change.
Additionally, we will discuss the consequences of increasing quantification for political activism. Next to additional challenges, the prevalence of numerical data does also present new opportunities to better identify and solve social problems and provides new ways for activist groups to engage in the policymaking process.WHENMay 02, 2021 at 2pmWHEREZoom
Please RSVP to receive the link
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Spring has finally arrived – and not without many exciting updates from Democrats Abroad! Here is some of the most important news we have to share:
I. DA Germany is proceeding full steam ahead under the leadership of our newly elected 2021-2023 Executive Committee. The election results are listed below.
II. Our chair and vice chair have special messages for all DAG members.
III. The GOTV team is hard at work devising strategies to increase voter turnout. Learn how YOU can make a difference in the 2021 elections and 2022 midterms.
IV. Want to get involved in specific issue areas? DA’s Caucuses and local chapters have a lot of exciting events in store.
V. Germany members can get great deals on awesome gear – all for a good cause!
VI. Our communications teams are looking for volunteers.
Keep reading to find out more!
I. Annual General Meeting & Elections
On Saturday, March 20, we held our first-ever online elections at our Annual General Meeting (AGM). We appreciate everyone who took part in the process and are excited to welcome our newly elected national leadership team:
Jennifer von Estorff
Chapter Development Coordinator:
Events & Fundraising Coordinator:
We extend a huge THANK YOU to all outgoing leaders, including Candice Kerestan (former chair), Ron Schlundt (former treasurer), Quaide Williams (former chapter development coordinator), Angela Fobbs (former communications coordinator), Susan Penrod (former membership/IT coordinator), and Beverly Seebach (former press coordinator).
We also give a big round of applause to the Nomination and Elections Subcommittee, comprised of Susan Penrod, Nancy Schimkat, and Katie Solon, who ensured that the process ran smoothly and fairly.
We are so grateful for all these super volunteers have done to make 2020 a success!
II. Messages from Our Leaders
Dear Democrats Abroad Germany Members:
I am honored to have been elected to serve you as Chair for the next two years and look forward to continuing the great work that my predecessor, Candice Kerestan undertook in her tenure as Chair: namely continue to register more new voters, to increase our membership, to better educate our membership about the importance of voting, especially about voting in down-ballot races, to assist both members and non-members with the voting process, to provide more programming for our members, and to improve our overall organizational structure. However, I cannot do this alone. In the coming weeks I will be reaching out to our leadership to get to know them and to put forth an agenda that will guide us for the next two years and help us attain the goals mentioned above. I also look forward to meeting many of you, our volunteers, who work tirelessly to locate Americans in Germany and urge them to become engaged in the political process. I am grateful to you for all the work you do. Please know that it does not go unnoticed. With your help, your energy and your dedication we will tackle and hopefully overcome the challenges that face us. Like Barack Obama said “A change is brought about because ordinary people do extraordinary things.” Like you, I am just an ordinary person, but together we will do extraordinary things to bring about the change that America needs today.
Kenton E. Barnes, Ph.D.
Hello! For those that don’t know me, I’m Emily Lines and I live in Berlin and vote in Indiana. I’m very excited to be the next Vice Chair of DA Germany. Thank you to all those that voted for me at the AGM (and to the NES for the well run election). I’ve had the pleasure of working with many people in DAG during my time as Vice Chair in Berlin and as the Events & Fundraising Coordinator the past four years. I’m so appreciative of all the work, energy, and time our outgoing leaders put into our organization. As we move ahead, I look forward to working with our newly elected leaders and even more of you to make sure we keep control of Congress in 2022. If you have questions, you’re welcome to reach me at [email protected].
Do you have questions about DA? Do you want to get to know our new chairs better? Then join Kenton and Emily for a virtual Meet and Greet on April 24 at 2:00 p.m. CEST. RSVP for more information.
III. GOTV Corner
Democrats Abroad Germany remains committed to our core mission of getting out the vote, and there are plenty of ways you can get involved.
Reminder: Overseas voters need to register every calendar year. Check your status atvotefromabroad.org and reach out with any questions!
Here’s what’s happening this April:
- Special election in Texas (CD-6) on May 1.
Calling all Texans Abroad – We are currently building a global group to advocate for overseas and in-state voting rights, meet with state legislators and help flip races. Be sure to save the date for our Cinco de Mayo event on May 5 at 7:30 p.m. If you want to get involved, join our group on Slack or follow us on Twitter @TXabroad. Reach us at [email protected].
OTHER UPCOMING ELECTIONS -- If you're a voter in one of the states listed below, make sure you've requested your absentee ballot this year. Just go to votefromabroad.org to request or check your voter status.
- New Mexico (CD-1) special election on June 1.
- New Jersey and Virginia primaries on June 8 (General elections on Nov. 2).
- Ohio (CD-11) special election on August 3.
Here's what else you can do this month:
- Join a study group targeting MISINFORMATION AND RADICALIZATION – April 22, 7:00 p.m. CEST
We are piloting a group to review literature on misinformation and radicalization to help change the way we communicate in crucial swing districts. The project is designed for the mutual benefit of overseas and homeland voters. RSVP to receive the connection information.
- Come out to meet and get involved with our STATE ACTIVISM TEAMS – April 25, 3:00 p.m. CEST
We will be introducing initiatives for voters abroad from Texas (see above), Arizona, Georgia, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania and sharing information on how to help keep or turn these states blue. RSVP on our website for more details.
Interested in starting or contributing to a group from your voting state? Get in touch with Teresa Ritterhoff at [email protected]
- Keep your eyes peeled for another Pop Up for the People event to call our Senators in support of the For the People Act. We will be holding them regularly until S1 is passed and voting rights are secured for ALL Americans.
What else can you do to help GOTV? A LOT! Postcarding is something you can start right away. Training for phonebanking is offered monthly. For more information/options, reach out to your chapter or send an email to [email protected].
We need everyone in DAG to Get Out The Vote – including you!
IV. Upcoming Events
Book Club: How to Be an Anti-Capitalist in the 21st Century – April 26, 6:00 p.m. CEST
SAVE THE DATE! Germany Progressive Caucus Launch – May 1, 7:00 p.m. CEST
Veteran's and Military Families Caucus
Sexual Assault Awareness Day (with Women's Caucus) – April 6, 6:00 p.m. CEST
Chapter Events of Note (open to all)
Virtual Pub Quiz – April 9, 7:30 p.m. CEST
Silly Debate Night – April 10, 7:00 p.m. CEST
"Nothing to Hide Part 1: Real-Time Communication" w/ Kevin Lyle – April 11, 2:00 p.m. CEST
Earth Day DIY Workshop – April 22, 7:00 p.m. CEST
Interview with Former Congressman Bart Stupak (MI-1) – April 22, 7:30 p.m. CEST
Book Club: How Long 'til Black Future Month? – April 22, 7:30 p.m. CEST
Book Club: The Storm: What Went Wrong and Why During Hurricane Katrina—The Inside Story from One Louisiana Scientist – April 29, 7:30 p.m. CEST
DA Germany has a new addition this month: the DAG Climate Caucus!
The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has stated that humanity has less than 10 years to drastically reduce greenhouse gas emissions in order to avoid climate catastrophe; this means all hands on deck! The necessary political will has not yet been built, but as evidenced by the Biden administration’s climate pledges, the momentum is with us. Climate is a justice issue, a science issue, and a generational issue; for our present and our future we must demand action now.
We’re looking to form a strong team of DAG members motivated by this issue. If you are interested in being active in the newly formed DAG Climate Caucus, please contact Dash Nesbitt at [email protected] to get involved!
V. Support DA Germany
As an entirely volunteer-run and donation-funded organization, your financial support allows us to do our important work — getting Americans overseas to vote. Contributions of any size are greatly appreciated and can be directed to:
Account name: Democrats Abroad Germany
IBAN: DE04 5405 0220 0140 2702 99
If you’d like to get some bang for your buck, why not order some DA and Biden-Harris swag? All proceeds benefit DA Germany and help us get out the vote. As if it couldn't get any better, we are currently offering a special 20% off deal on 2020 merchandise!
Tip: Coffee lovers should also check out our exclusive new "Cup of Joe" mugs.
VI. Join Our Communications Teams
Are you a social media, advertising, or design guru? Are you looking for a meaningful way to use your skills to support DA?
Then join our new communications teams! Send an email to [email protected] for more information.
Thanks for staying up to date, and see you at an event soon!
Kaitlyn Kennedy rsvped for Texans Abroad Celebrate Cinco de Mayo with DA Mexico via Kaitlyn Kennedy 2021-04-06 16:52:31 -0400
For Cinco de Mayo, Texans Abroad will be turning our focus to the work of Democrats Abroad Mexico.
Please join us for our next online global event as we welcome guest speaker Edgar Lopez-Vallejo, Vice Chair of DA Mexico and member of the DA Hispanic Caucus Steering Committee. We will be discussing the promise and potential of Texas voters living in Mexico. There are over a million U.S. citizens living in Mexico, and fewer than 3% of eligible voters returned a ballot in 2016. We can help turn the tide in Texas by reaching these critical voters. Come and see how you can get involved!
We will also be discussing the 87th Session of the Texas Legislature and giving you information about key bills to support or oppose and how you can best do that. Our voices matter!
See you on May 5th at 7:30 CET/1:30 Eastern on Zoom. Be sure to RSVP so we can send you the link!
If you have any questions, please write to us at: [email protected]
You can also follow us on Twitter: @TXabroadWHENMay 05, 2021 at 7:30pmWHEREZoom
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Kaitlyn Kennedy rsvped for New Leader Orientation 2021, Session 1 (AP/EMEA) 2021-04-05 03:05:03 -0400
2021 New Leader Orientation (Session 1)
(photo from the 2019 EMEA Regional Meeting in Athens)
Saturday, 24 April 2021, 3:00-6:00 AM EDT (check your local time HERE)
Newly-elected leaders are invited to attend a New Leader Orientation session, facilitated by the Asia Pacific and Europe, Middle East, and Africa regional teams. Current leaders and volunteers are also welcome to join as a refresher, as are those who are candidates for local office where elections have not yet taken place.
During this three-hour orientation, we will cover the following Democrats Abroad basics:
- Our purpose, our organizational structure, and how we conduct business (45 minutes)
- Our IT Team and key resources (30 minutes)
- Our Comms Team and how we share our messages (20 minutes)
- Our other teams and committees that support leaders and Country Committees (40 minutes)
- Upcoming and regular regional and global meetings (20 minutes)
There will also be a ten-minute break, along with Q&A opportunities.
Please RSVP for the WebEx link.
A second New Leader orientation session, covering the same topics, will also be held at an Americas/EMEA-friendly time on Saturday, 08 May between 12:00-3:00 PM EDT. To register for that session, please visit this event page to RSVP.WHENApril 24, 2021 at 3amWHEREWebEx
Kaitlyn Kennedy rsvped for May Book Club: Griftopia by Matt Taibbi via Kaitlyn Kennedy 2021-04-05 04:36:57 -0400
For May's book club meeting, we will be discussing Griftopia: A Story of Bankers, Politicians, and the Most Audacious Power Grab in American History by Matt Taibbi.
"The financial crisis that exploded in 2008 isn’t past but prologue. The grifter class—made up of the largest players in the financial industry and the politicians who do their bidding—has been growing in power, and the crisis was only one terrifying manifestation of how they’ve hijacked America’s political and economic life.
Matt Taibbi has combined deep sources, trailblazing reportage, and provocative analysis to create the most lucid, emotionally galvanizing account yet written of this ongoing American crisis. He offers fresh reporting on the backroom deals of the bailout; tells the story of Goldman Sachs, the “vampire squid wrapped around the face of humanity”; and uncovers the hidden commodities bubble that transferred billions of dollars to Wall Street while creating food shortages around the world.
This is essential reading for anyone who wants to understand the labyrinthine inner workings of this country, and the profound consequences for us all." – description from Goodreads.com
All are welcome – even if you don't get a chance to read the book!
Please RSVP to receive the Zoom link.WHENMay 30, 2021 at 1pmWHEREZoom
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For out next book club, we will be reading The Storm: What Went Wrong and Why During Hurricane Katrina--the Inside Story from One Louisiana Scientist. Nick Johnson, a native Louisianan himself and a member of our chapter, will lead us in what promises to be an interesting discussion on what the author calls "stunning incompetence among the bureaucrats, the politicians, and the Army Corps of Engineers that culminated in the catastrophe that crippled, perhaps forever, a great American city." RSVP for the Zoom link.WHENApril 29, 2021 at 7:30pmWHEREZoom (RSVP for link)
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$2,681.05 raisedGOAL: $2,021.00
Candice Kerestan's 2021 Birthday Fundraiser
As many of you know, Democrats Abroad has been a big part of my life since I moved to Germany seven(!) years ago, and it’s remarkable what the organization has accomplished in that time! This past election cycle, we engaged Americans abroad like never before and delivered decisive votes in races across the United States.
But as they say, “after the election is before the election”, and it’s important to me that we continue setting up Democrats for success in 2022. As I start this next year of my life, I invite you to join me in making a contribution to Democrats Abroad, an organization near and dear to me.
Donations are made to Democrats Abroad (Democratic Party Committee Abroad) and not to any candidate for Federal Office.
Donations to Democrats Abroad are not tax-deductible.Donate
Happy Thanksgiving from everyone at DA Saxony! Our volunteers have created this very special video sending you their holiday greetings. Check it out to hear what they have to say!