Thursday, March 30, 2006

Cayuga Coalition for Peace Members Organize for Roberts

Emails recently sent by members of the Cayuga Coalition for Peace indicate that members of group are overwhelmingly backing Les Roberts in the Democratic congressional primary here in New York's 24th District.

Based in Auburn, but with members spread throughout Cayuga County and beyond, the Coalition for Peace has emerged as a consistent grassroots force in local politics, addressing issues that go far beyond just the war in Iraq. The group has sponsored discussions and actions on issues as far-ranging as domestic espionage against political dissent and the political implications of electronic voting machines.

With many Democrats among their ranks, the Cayuga Coalition for Peace can be counted upon to be a significant influence in the 24th District, in voting, volunteering, and fundraising. It is not clear if there is any equivalent grassroots organization in the district that is willing to put its support behind Michael Arcuri, who has yet to take many detailed stands on the issues that motivate such groups.


Anonymous said...

you could point out that arcuri recieved the endorsement of the local UFCW.

24 Independent said...

Interesting point. Does a union count as a grassroots issues organization, or should we group it in with insider political groups aligned with the Democratic Party establishment?

Anonymous said...

why, you don't think union endoresments are relevent. Do you not like unions? you don't think that unions use grassroots organizing to accomplish things?

24 Independent said...

Where is the United Food and Commercial Workers, Local One group based?

What is the territory of the Local One group? Does it cover all of the 24th District, or is it just one of many local groups?

Anonymous said...

don't know the first question, I read the endoresment in the Binghamton paper. according to the paper the union has 3,700 members in the 11 county district with a total of 24,000 members in the union as a whole. it must be pretty large then.

24 Independent said...

Hm. Took a good look for myself. The united food and commercial workers union local one covers a pretty big area, including Erie, PA and the Adirondacks, and territory in between.

What I'd like to know is what REASON the UFCW had for endorsing Arcuri. There's no word of it on the union's web site, and nothing in the news or elsewhere on the web except that the union has endorsed Arcuri.

The Cayuga Coalition for Peace has not, to my knowledge, offered an official endorsement. I don't know that the group actually endorses candidates.

What is clear from the Cayuga Coalition's emails is that many group members are organizing in support of Les Roberts because of the issues that Les Roberts stands for.

It would be useful if the UFCW could issue its reasons for endorsing Arcuri, instead of just stating that it is doing so. To give reasons would be helpful in educating district voters. To just announce an endorsement only makes a statement of power.

For some, knowing where power lies is enough. For me, I want to know what use that power is intended for.

Anonymous said...

Well of course a lefty organization is going to organize for Roberts..he's the lefty candidate, Arcuri is the safe center candidate. I'm curious as to the power of the Cayuga Coalition for Peace, I've been at central New York politics awhile and this is maybe the only time I've heard of them as a force.

24 Independent said...

Who said I don't think that unions are relevant? I've been a union member in the past, and I'm not one now, but that's because I'm self employed.

Some things I like about some unions, and some things I don't like about some unions. I love that workers can organize together for better conditions. There have been some - SOME - union political organizers I've worked with in the past who have had a very arrogant attitude about grassroots voter activists.

So, when it comes to unions, I take the organizations on an individual basis - the same way I do with candidates, or county committees. When political activity is involved, a little bit of suspicion is usually merited, and I don't think that should be interpreted as an insult.

Grassroots is a really tricky term. I wonder if an organization can "use" grassroots techniques. I think that grassroots is about empowered individuals working together in a coordinated fashion, not about an organization's leadership deciding that it is going to organize people to what it wants accomplished.

See the difference?

The Cayuga Coalition for Peace is genuine grassroots. How do I know? I used to be a member, and I've known the people who have organized it for years.

I don't know United Food and Commercial Workers Local One at all, and so I think that the fair thing for me to do is to ask questions, and for people who know the UFCW Local One better than I do to answer those questions.

Anonymous said...

UFCW One was the most corrupt local union in the country. Mob controlled. Where is Joe Talarico these days anyway?

And the lazy UFCW One union organizers can't seem to get any new grocery members, which of course requires actual organizing, so they join the lefty anti-WalMart coalition but can't even find WalMart workers who want to unionize.

That my friend is a pathetic endorsement.

Anonymous said...

Didn't the lone Kozial supporter say he wasn't going to comment anymore?

Anonymous said...

Any group that endorses either candidate this early is not politically smart. This race is far too young for any credible organization to be endorsing candidates. Until there have been debates, more fundraising, and full issue papers from both campaigns, any endorsement is just an empty show of support looking for future political favors.

Anonymous said...

By the By - as a union member I did some research. The local UFCW, and all of the other unions listed on Arcuri's site, did not meet with all the candidates before they made endorsements. Nor do they have any defined endorsements process.
One union official in Utica simply said "hey we know Arcuri".

thingwarbler said...

Anonymous at 7.02PM: "Arcuri is the safe center candidate." Safe for whom? I mean, what's by definition unsafe about "the lefty candidate" -- are you looking at their actual positions here and deciding that Roberts is a loose cannon and Arcuri the man with the plan, or are you listening to Rahm Emmanuel and the powerbrokers in DC tell you that Arcuri is their man, the party insider's favorite, and therefore, ipso facto, the safe, known entity?

Isn't it time for something that's a little more ambitous than the "safe center" if we're to change things around here?

24 Independent said...

I had heard, but have no idea if it's true, that Arcuri is getting a lot of union endorsements because of his sister's work with area unions.

Is this true, or just another load-of-garbage rumor?

Biggus Dickus said...

I had heard, but have no idea if it's true, that Arcuri is getting a lot of union endorsements because of his sister's work with area unions.

I'm sure it's just a coincidence that Arcuri picked up those endorsements...without any other candidates being interviewed. And all that money from the union offices on K-street? Sheer coincidence as well.

Odd that the money showed up right when it was needed, but coincidences can happen like that.

Your friend forever,
Biggus Dickus