ELECTION OF DONALD TRUMP HERALDS THE ARRIVAL OF THE TNA (Trans-National Alliance)
The 420Box Calls for a Constitutional Convention
by Pat Raphael
The United States of America often proudly looks at its history, and see a country created as a result of governance unresponsive to the local population. Powers far removed, usurping authority derived from their very own pronouncements, granted themselves the right to tax the energy and value of the colonies, with no consideration of the colonists’ interest via representation in the decision-making bodies of those far-removed powers. As the creation lore lays it out, this was an unacceptable condition for the Seventy-Sixers to endure. Thus propelled by righteous zeal, they fought to create a nation of the people, by the people, and for the people. Brings a patriotic tear to the eye to see our grand experiment in democracy, grow and evolve by the might of history, to now stand as the preeminent world power. But oh the historical irony — that the root bears the fruit. We shook King George’s crown off our heads, and fashioned in Washington DC another powerful crown, far-removed and unresponsive to the interests of local populations all over our great land. Now Washington DC is taking the value of our taxed energy, to fulfill the special interests of the elite few who control all our institutions.
The election of Abu Ivanka makes clear that the process for choosing our Chief Executive is irretrievably broken. Right from the start, the rules of that process do not put the people front and center — thus the electoral college. Then, overlay on top of this undemocratic system, artificial gates raised by interested private corporations (the Democratic and Republican parties), we get in the end, election results deemed illegitimate by an increasing segment of the population. This time around, the objections to the result of Drumpf 2016 seem even more stark. After all, it is fashionable, here in Venice, to don the ‘F*ck Trump’ tee, since we share a similar distaste with all the other major American cities who overwhelmingly voted against him. And we look closer and see how the result was also affected by the many hands that tilted the process scale (Bern, baby, Bern…).
So now what? An executive branch carrying an air of illegitimacy due to a flawed electoral process; maybe turn to the legislature? There too we look closer and see a walled city, well protected from the encroaching will of the people. How systematically convenient is it that the total population of blue districts is higher than the total population of red districts, yet there are more red congress members than blue congress members? …and not by a little bit either. Remember this is the same imbalance that created the 3-million vote difference between the winner of the popular vote and the winner of the electoral college. In this, the illegitimacy of the executive branch is covered and enabled by the gerrymandering illegitimacy of the legislature. That is how one party, with less popular support, have maneuvered themselves into a permanent majority in the House of Representatives, thus relieving the whole of the body politics from the push and sway of the people’s interest. Down goes another branch…
What about the courts? There are many historical instances where the last line of defense, where the people held one last hope for redress, rested with the courts. The powerful elites know this too. That’s why for years now a systematic campaign has been underway to maintain a conservative court, even as the people grew more liberal. It has been euphemistically called a lagging indicator to suggest that the courts take time to change, and that the lifetime appointments were meant to keep the courts reacting slowly. If foul play is not alleged in the case of scaly Scalia, it must be seen that the other side caught a break. Perhaps liberals would have wanted a better guy making the pick than the Droner-in-Chief, Barry O, but at least they can hope for a marginal move leftward. naw kid, they playin’ chess, while you playin’ checkers — reactin’! The rules are pretty clear: the presiding executive gets to fill any vacancies created during their term. Yet this lost of ground in the power game was just too much for them to take, and in all of our faces, the “original intent” guy’s seat was denied to whom the rules give the right to make that appointment. Can an observant public, ever put any confidence in the court as presently constituted? Now that one member of the court oozes that distinct orange tint (like he’s been rolling in cheetos dust or something), doesn’t that delegitimize every decision coming down from a court with a stolen seat? A trifecta of illegitimacy is achieved when the party who gerrymandered for themselves the control of the legislature, gives cover to the executive to ignore the constitution, so that the judiciary can remain in the hands of their partisan teammates.
Where do we turn for solutions? When we consider the imaginative ingenuity and problem-solving creativity of the American people, we recognize that often when problems fester in government, it is likely not because we can’t put our heads together and come up with a solution. Instead, the money trail usually leads us to a special interest that is actively preventing the people’s solution, in favor of whatever version of the problem best serves their bottom line. …and over time the people become awaken to this process, and the glare of our many problems insist too strongly for solutions. Here’s the trap: just when we can’t take it any more, and we are ready to insist on major changes, a bunch of solutions (which really aren’t solutions) begin to absorb that change energy… Suddenly, we’re out there marching every weekend, beating drums and yelling our throats hoarse, all the while dissipating and draining our change energy — and nothing changes. Or we put all of our hopes into a fringe candidate from the right or the left (think DocPaul or Kucinich or the Bern), but we get them to run in their electoral process — sometimes getting sooo close, but again and again, we only take moral victories to go with our heart-breaking defeats at the polls (we’ll get em’ next time), and NOTHING CHANGES.
While there are places in this country where people don’t know what is going on in our elections, we are fortunate that here in Venice, so many of our friends and neighbors have been paying attention enough to see clearly the true state of our democracy. When our nation needs thought leaders to re-imagine what a more locally-responsive, people-centered approach to governance would look like, it will turn to places like Venice where the pulse of creativity is flowing with living art, culture, and technology. It’s our country’s places like Venice, where men and women are undergoing spiritual maturity and are learning to co-exist and thrive together. These places offer a different type of dialogue in the midst of these growing spiritual beings, where conversation generates and dissipates a more refined purity of truth among the participants. We strove for many months to maintain such a space on the boardwalk, where we could refocus on the central value of dialogue, and create a safe space for conversation. We call it the 420box — that last enclave of guys and gals on the north end of the OceanFrontWalk — the first attraction coming in from Santa Monica. Over a period of many months during the last election cycle, we at the 420box engaged in a series of conversations during which we realized that we should find worthy outlets for all the positive change energy bubbling up here in Venice. We saw no value in the convenient channeling of our change energy into outlets of “the system’s” choosing. We were tired of protesting, and wanted instead to profess something in our gatherings. Stop coming together just to yell about what we’re against, but gather to dialogue about what we are for. One such worthy outlet, is to direct our change energy towards the creation of a Trans-National Alliance.
The TNA is a way to organize ourselves and deliver governance services (such as health care, education, social services, neighborhood security, etc.), to the members of the trans-public, with transparency and open-sourced efficiency, while being outside of the controlling hands in Washington DC. When the solutions (which are not solutions) manifest, they have a way of frothing up a whole lot of activity (like meetings and teach-ins and protests) without producing tangible, real-world results to which we can point. Chief among the aims of the TNA is to produce efficient outcomes that reinforce our collective will, and have those outcomes scale-able, with success building upon success, and a positive state of growth leading to more measurable outcomes. We have advantages that they did not have in Seventy-Six, that we can tap in to, to make our decision-making locally sourced and inclusive. Say a specific TNA function group wants to vote on a particular policy consideration. Since today, there’s an app for that (which we built, with code we sourced ourselves, during and open and transparent operation of that TNA function group’s work) we can use all of our input and include all of our votes and go forward according to the result of the “wise crowd’s” will.
The origin of the TNA, being dialogues we had hanging out, it must be clearly stated that many of the first principals that are the TNA’s core defining traits came out of conversations beginning with Michael “the lord jesus christ” Charles, with Don — low key in the background adding wisdom and insight, passion from clear voices like Anna (MC KOA), input from David “the love guy” Busch, Yetti (may he rest in peace), that crazy jew Jarrod (or whatever name he thinks the mossad got him operating under) — who always offers such interesting real world insight into a modern day operation of Mosaic law… now if he’d just stop with the self-sabotage! the guys at OccupyVenice, along with countless unnamed regulars and walker-bys to the 420box. Thanks too to Terrance, one of those true believers — he’s the guy who would stay orange even if The Boss shot a couple of tourists in Time Square. Voices like his adds to the dialogue, to have an otherwise smart guy, whose world has been conditioned to accept everything coming out of Washington now that it is his guy with the power. We also could not hang out at the 420box, there for hours at a time, having these awesome conversations, if Becky, and groups like CBC weren’t cooking… (we love you Becky — up to FOUR days a week now!).
We have people like Martha who love us, and keep us informed about every little decision made in the halls of power, that may affect us on the beach. We’d never know how entrenched the problem really is, if people like her weren’t trickling down the information. And Saffron, who saw the value of this paper, and connected us to the BeachHead, so that now we have a platform to reach a mass readership. Thanks, also to the staff and money contributors of the Free Venice BeachHead for staying in the fight and doing it for the right reason. Keep on keeping on, is what the old hippies told me…We herald here the arrival of the TNA, because it is time to open our ranks to the community at-large, and tap in to the great capacity contained here in Venice.
We call, together, for a gathering of the Trans-public, to dialogue into a working model, the creation of a Trans-National Alliance constitution. Yes, it’s shadow government time, people. But we do this not as a replacement or challenge to current or existing local, state, or federal government. The spirit of the TNA is active disengagement from a dysfunctional and illegitimate power structure. We purposely want to STOP GIVING THEM OUR ENERGY. We’ve come to realize how little we want or need from Washington DC, so we are now accepting to let them do as they will, while we actively gather here presenting our own solutions, aiming for the most local impact. This is just us, asserting that we can peaceably assemble, and that assembly has the aim of enabling collective decision-making. We want to put on paper, our principals of inclusivity, personal freedom, and collective service to community. We want to elevate and centralize human rights to be our chief consideration in the most transparent operation of our open-sourced governance and decision-making, so that whatever we do, we’re doing it together, for us all.
Bring some herbs (or not), let us sit down and have a conversation. Offer your ideas, your capacity, your resources… help us document this process. We need AV equipment to faithfully capture what is taking place so that members of our alliance who are not in attendance can access these dialogues. We need digital real estate (web site, hosting, social media management, etc). We also need to create a TNA app. We need visual aids and art, to express the TNA to the public passerby at-a-glance; we need printing. We need to be able to capture our spirit on many platforms, and make the transparent operation of our intention, the main driver growing our alliance.
This is the season to do all this. At a time when our government is headed by the greenest orange menace to ever sit in that chair (yes, he’s sooo in over his comb-over, and that inexperience is dangerous to us all), but let us replace that anxiety with positive action. Let us take back our creative power and let us come up with a digital document that reflects our spirit, then let us make it available to the weary public, looking for an outlet to express their heart of positivity. The process will remain open all summer and input is sought from as many sources as are willing to contribute. By the end of the Venice season (say around halloween), we should have wrapped up our constitutional convention and have a final document to print on the pages of The BeachHead. Yes, join us!