BusCon '06

Jesse Cornett

As a few people know, I was around for the earliest Oregon Bus Project meetings and was very active with the Bus through the first election cycle. I can't believe that it's already been four years. Four years, countless good deeds done, many young people engaged, and dozens of successful events later, they are coming into the new election cycle strong.

The Bus Project is kicking off the election year right: politics on the first full weekend of the New Year, with the Engage Oregon Conference, January 6-8 in Welches. That’s right, even better than a hit and run (wait in line to get in, wait in bar line, listen to a speech, schmooze a little and then go home when the free drink tickets run out) gathering we’re all so used to, they are setting aside an entire weekend to discuss the ballot initiatives that may appear on the 2006 ballot, having in-depth policy workshops (yes, that means more in depth than the five minutes waiting in line at the bar at your average political event), and holding political training sessions. They also have the best Oregon has to offer in terms of speakers, and a few more folks like a personal favorite of mine, Andrei Cherny (the youngest White House speech writer ever), and Jim Hightower. See the current list.

Most people who know me, and even some who I only know virtually (that means you, Kaza), know that I favor rowdy and fun. Damn right, I do. That’s certainly not what political activism is all about (sorry Chubby, it’s not). But there’s a time and a place for that. Right now, if we’re not already, it’s time to get down to the work of changing our little world. It’s on the ballot next year where we can see some real changes in Oregon. Who knows, maybe some rowdy can be tied into it, after the work is done for the day, of course (and I promise not to assault anyone at the Conference but I can’t say that I won’t joke about it).

Start your political year off right and be there!

Comments

  • Adam Petkun (unverified)
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    David Sirota is now among the fancy people who will be kicking it with us at Rebooting Democracy (that pun was irresistible)

  • Skip from Gresham (unverified)
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    I'll be there but I'll be packing warm clothes, a bottle of Capt Morgans, and tossing chains in my trunk.

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    I plan on being there... that is if the post office ever feels like delivering my check to the Bus Project. It's beginning to look like I'm going to have to run across town to the office.

    It's my birthday on the 6th, so that night we're gonna be celebrating. ; )

  • Allison (unverified)
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    I've been looking over the title of the workshops being offered, and quite frankly I'm really looking forward to them. I've been to conferences before and they're nothing like this. But then, there's nothing the Bus does that's all that much like the way everyone else does it.

  • Shawn (unverified)
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    Another treat - especially for the youngsters who've never had a chance to meet him - is Les AuCoin will be spending the weekend on the mountain with the group. And don't forget Kitzhaber, too, will be there!

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    We'll have a local House District-52 contingent there too, representing the cranky/skeptical/rural wing of the Oregon progressive movement.

    We haven't sent any valentines to the adored Kitz, Les, and other Great Minds. Nor, to be fair, have they sent any to us; but nonetheless, the lovely Jennifer Yocum has bravely included us even though she is well aware of our collective aversion to kool-aid.

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    It will be interesting to see if anything new or useful will surface in discussions or whether it will be focused on:

    Uncritically giving public schools unlimited amounts of funds

    Locking up every sqare inch of Oregon forest under increasingly fantastical definitions of "Old Growth"

    Gitten cheap healthcare somehow

    Educating the idiots/electorate to see the Light of Progressive Thought

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    One can always hope

  • Aaron (unverified)
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    cranky/skeptical/rural wing of the Oregon progressive movement and not of the DPO.

    So Pat you finally truly have a leadership perch in the party now hmm..

    I am going to enjoy the weekend here in Portland.

  • Noelle (unverified)
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    I unfortunately had to cancel my tickets today, due to unforseen circumstances, but it sounded like it is going to be a marvelous event.

  • Skip from Gresham (unverified)
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    Great post Pat....we can hope the agenda is more productive than what we have both experienced in the past. The Liberal movement used to be proud of the "L" brand on it's rump....now it's fashionable to hide behind the word "Progressive"....whatever tha's supposed to mean.

    No Koolaid for this old guy....but a few Capt Morgan's will keep my attention. Maybe we can at least stir up some unique thoughts for a day or two.

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