Monday, February 1, 2010

A How-To Guide: Making a Difference at the Precinct Level

We have now arrived at the moment where all of the time, energy, effort, and passion of the last year can be funneled towards making a difference electorally. The good news? This part will only take up a few hours on a Saturday. Great, eh?!

For too long too many of us checked ourselves out of the civic process, thinking that voting every couple of years was all that was required of us. We were so, so wrong. I was wrong. I look back now in wonder at how I ever thought that all I had to do was elect a few people and that they would run everything exactly how I wanted, with a few unfortunate mishaps here and there, and that these elected officials really and truly represented me.

How totally wrongheaded this is.

Now that I have awoken to this reality, I frequently think that we each have two choices when it comes to serving our country. We can either join the military, as so many brave, young men and women choose to do, or we can become citizen soldiers, armed with knowledge and a commitment to civics, history, and freedom. So if you are not a veteran, or are not currently serving in our military, then please, come along with me and serve your country. As I always say, when we show up, we win.

And now the information you need.

I am learning all this right along with you, so if anyone sees that I've made an error, please don't hesitate to email me with a correction.

Each state is divided into things called precincts, and there are a lot of them. They are tiny. They are basically a neighborhood. Each state is also divided into Legislative districts, which apply to state legislature positions, and are bigger than precincts. Additionally, each state is divided into Congressional districts, which apply to the federal congressional positions, which are bigger than Legislative districts.

I will only outline the Republican and Democrat party processes because I don't have the time to outline a million other parties' meetings. Many people might wonder why I am listing the Democrats' information, but honestly, they are in dire need of some fiscal sanity and anyone that is brave enough to try ought to be encouraged. (Not to say the Republican party doesn't need a swift kick in the fiscally responsible direction as well...) Also, not everyone in the Tea Party movement is a Republican, so why not help fiscally conservative people push forth in the Democrat party as well? Why not change the range of what is acceptable in both parties? Hmmm?

If you are interested in getting involved on the Republican side of things, follow these steps and become a part of the process. This will ensure you have a say in how things go in the next few important months. By attending these caucuses you will be able to vote for the people who attend the county and state conventions, or attend them yourself. It is at these conventions that the GOP leadership and platform are elected and decided. Don't you want a say?

1. Go to your county GOP website. Some smaller counties are pooling their caucuses so it doesn't matter which precinct you live in. To find your county GOP website, click here. Most of the county websites have the caucus information on the front page. If you have a problem finding it, try to contact someone off of the website.

2. If your county website shows various locations for the precinct caucuses, you will need to figure out which precinct you live in. You can do this by looking at your voter registration card, or by going here and entering your information. The result of the search will give you your Legislative district and your precinct information.

3. Go back to the county GOP website and look up your precinct. You should then be able to see where yours is being held. They are all being held on Saturday, February 13th, at 10:00 a.m. It is just a question of where you need to go.

Note: The King County website is here. I'm listing this one specifically because I believe that most of the people who read this blog are from King County, but I could be wrong!

Make sure you show up on time (or a little early) and if you have any questions, try to contact someone from the website ahead of time. If I find out any other information, I'll try to pass it along.

The only thing I could find for the Democrats is a listing for their Legislative District Caucuses. Their website states that this is the first step in the road to the 2010 elections, so I am guessing that this is it for them. Most of these are happening statewide on Sunday, March 14th at 1:00 p.m. Some are happening on April 10th. For more information, go here. The same process applies though for finding your precinct and Legislative District, regardless of whether you want to attend a Democrat or Republican caucus.

All I can do is give you some information. The rest is up to you. Take your new passion and energy and help to revitalize the political process in America by revitalizing our local politics first.

Then be sure to show up to the upcoming rallies and let 'em have it!


  1. This grass-roots activism is the heart of American Democracy and so why not look at the real root of decay in our political system? American Democracy has become an oligarchy, that is, rule by a few. Ever feel like your vote doesn't matter? Rule just passes back and forth between the richest political interests (parties) and no other voice has a chance. That is because money rules in Washington. Only big money gets the legislation it wants passed. You're voice doesn't count. But, it can count big. A constitutional ammendmant to outlaw all lobbying and make politicians rely on financing from the public it serves would make them really serve you, instead of the special interests they now serve (bankers, unions, industries, even foreign countries have lobbies in Washington that have more power than the vote of the American people). Coupled with a change to limit campaign contributions to allow them only from American citizens and limited annually to 5% of median income in the state in which they reside, would make your congress come to you and represent your ideas. American Democracy is destroying itself as John Adams pedicted. If you don't clean it up today, it won't be here tomorrow.

  2. You said this:

    “And it was this idea that he and other people decide what the needs are in society. They get to decide. But in order to fund those things, they have to take from some people in order to give to the other people.”

    Are you honestly not bright enough to realize that you've just described "government" as described by our constitution? Elected officials in Congress levy taxes on us to fund this or that. Sometimes it's to fund things we like, sometimes it's things other people like.

    Tell me you're smarter than this. Please.

    February 2, 2010 10:47 AM

  3. OMG, you're like sooooo wise! I agree with you that Congress shouldn't be allowed to legislate on hour behalf or collect tax's and spend them! Overthrow the Constitution, noW! LOL

  4. I know absolutely nothing about you but, NPR had a piece on the radio this morning that mentioned you and I was intriqued enough to find your blog, though not knowing how to spell your name made the search a litle more difficult! Anyway can't wait to read what you have to say.

  5. A person can only hope that you or somebody very close to you gets a serious long-term illness and you get to see real close what happens to them in our crappy disjointed medical system.

    A person in your physical shape has no business complaining about shared medical costs when you will so obviously need these services in short order.

    "I got mine; screw everyone else" only works until it's you that needs a hand up. Here's to instant Karma.

  6. Moderating comments huh? Chickenshit.

  7. "Because knowledge is the only commodity that needs redistributing"

    Honey, please get in line when you see some knowledge is being distributed!! You aren't just lacking in knowledge, you are actually quite mean.

  8. I also learned of you on NPR and thought I'd check out the rising startlet of the right. Turns out she's an empty vessel . . . a Limblaugher. Becoming a darling of the Tea Baggers doesn't seem to require much more than learning the keywords and repeating them ad nausem -- you love your country, you love the military (but undoubtedly never served yourself), you love your guns, you love the attention, you love your money (unless Dubya's using it to wage war), and most of all you love your interpretation of the constitution. To suggest that you (or your blog) redistributes knowledge is the height of self-delusion. You are doing nothing more than repeating the political pablum that the right loves to hear . . . day after day after day. A real Limblaugher.

  9. go screw yourself

  10. Our nation's ideals are expressed in Democracy, not in its governmental form of a Republic. Democrats are ideologically aligned with serving the 'majority' which includes serving conservative constituents. This is why elected democrats always drift to the center. Republicans, on the other hand, are ideologically aligned with 'individualism' (limited government, deregulation, private enterprise, State's Rights, etc) and are thus inclined to limit representation to constituents either willing to pay for it or believe in the same principle of limited government and representation. In short, the Republican Party institutionalizes taxation without representation.

  11. School board trustee seats are undervalued. The board MUST rein in superintendents, who otherwise treat million dollar annual budgets as their own personal petty cash fund. Voter turnout in local school board races can be as low as a few hundred votes, and can be decided by a dozen newly committed organizers. Lancaster Texas over the past four years is an example.

  12. you're stupid.

  13. You might be interested in this event.

  14. "So if you are not a veteran, or are not currently serving in our military, then please, come along with me and serve your country."

    Don't worry vet's li'l miss tea party will take of you. Li'l miss tea party, like her RepubliCON (chicken hawk) supporters, will toss you a bone. As long as you let them have their tax breaks and an oppotunity to rip off your life savings every 15 years or so.


  15. Wow, Liberty Belle, ever since you got famous the angry left has come out in droves. I guess all the hate they had for George W Bush is still alive and well and pointed at you now.
    Seattle is crazy far left and so many are just wrapped in hate and yet they think they should tell us all how to be tolerant.
    Liberalism is a mental disease.

  16. War is the health of the state. To support an extended foreign troop presence, while at the same time supporting small government domestically is contradictory. Non-intervention is the first step toward realizing freedom. Perpetual war is corrosive to an environment of liberty. Most wars are unjust. Ayn Rand said war is the second greatest evil known to man, the first being tyranny. She also thought the "good war" WW2 was needless. Perpetual war needs tyranny. Tyranny needs perpetual war.

    Even the revolutionary war and the civil war were needless. The revolutionary war threw off the burden of low taxes and high levels of freedom to be replaced by the corporate monstrosity we have today; the biggest government in the history of mankind. The civil war was not fought over slavery; it was fought because the federal government wanted to completely centralize power. Every other country in the world abolished slavery peacefully. Americans killed or maimed half their male population to accomplish as much.

    I am a military veteran with overseas time, so please don’t use the condescending tactic of appealing to some pseudo patriotism related to military support. The military is for killing. The military should not be championed. Military members are paid, most so not serve out of duty but because they are paid. Paid government agents with guns are mercenaries. You’ll second guess how much you support military service once the military is explicitly used within the US borders to take away the rights of citizens. It will happen. On some levels, it is already happening. Don’t be loyal to a failed institution out of some abstract feelings toward familial associations or some dubious historic account of American heroisms.

    If you have a right to your healthcare, which you do, than I have a right to my labor. I have a right to not pay taxes to support imperialistic wars. I have a right to be free from coercive government. Don’t I?

    I am not a liberal, so please don’t try to label me as such. Obama is just as fascist as Bush, and when I say fascist, I am speaking of the technical term, not the derogatory term. They both support the government corporate partnership that is currently destroying the wealth of the average person. There is actually very little difference between the two. About the greatest disagreement between the two parties are gays in the military. Since gays already serve in the military, it is an irrelevant issue.


    People are plotting against you that you might not realize. You should watch your back. You should record all professional conversations. Nothing is secure. The tea party may not be full of racists, but everybody around you thinks it is. They are judging you based on your association with the tea party movement. If you think people might have issues with being closely associated with a lead activist from the tea party, assume they resent you. They are acting on those judgments.

    Plan for a general crisis over the next few years. No amount of activism will change the coming dollar crisis. No amount of activism will delay the unimaginable consequences of peak oil. Our way of life is coming to an end.

  17. Hello Liberty Belle!
    So many negative and hateful comments on here. Here is one that is positive. I agree with you on almost everything you say. Where I haven't agreed with you, I have sought to further educate myself.

    It is wrong to take property under the threat of violence, no matter what the reason. It is even more wrong to give it to someone who has done nothing to earn it.


  18. Next Saturday is the ULTIMATE test for the Washington State tea party movement. Will the tea partiers come out in droves to rally at the the Precinct Caucus sites and participate?

    I say no, but I so, so want to be proven wrong.

    If they fail here then anything else they do this year will be meaningless.

    And like I said I fear they are going to fail here.

  19. "If they fail here then anything else they do this year will be meaningless."

    You should have said would be meaningless to me.
    The fact is that right now we are taking America back from the brink. Even here in the liberal hellhole of Seattle, independants, moderates and a handful of conservatives are slowly taking back America for Americans. We want our country back and we are going to take it back from the Democrats and the Republicans. We are sick and tired of them taking turns screwing us over and we have had enough. We are Americans and we want America back and we are taking it back, one race at a time.

  20. I am expecting that the result of this year will be "throwing the bums out" only to replace them with "new bums".

    That's what happened in 1994.

    What makes the Precinct Caucuses so important is that it's a chance to take at least one of the two major political parties back for the American people.

    Quite honestly I have seen some of the candidates the Republicans in particular are putting up this year and they really do seem like the same type of candidates they have always put up. I am talking about in Washington State of course.

    Right now I see no reason to vote for Washington State Republicans. They have betrayed us too many times.

  21. You say that we are taking it back one race at a time but if the Republicans are running the same old phonies and progressives, what's the result?

    Say hello to the new Boss. Same as the old Boss.

    I remember 1994 but more importantly I remember 1995. And even more recently I remember a President who had to destroy capitalism to save it. So when the Republicans talk about how they are the "fiscally responsible ones" they have had their chance and they proved that they weren't much better with lowing the size and scope of government or dealing with the economy than the Democrats were.

    Fool us once shame on you. Fool me twice shame on US!

  22. Two things that all tea partiers should have for the Precinct Causus this Saturday.

    1) A Digital video camera (or a camera that does video with sound) to record speeches and any other relevant activity. Such vidoes should be placed on the Internet.

    2) A copy of Robert's Rules of Order (because the Lefists in the room will try to break it) which can be found in libraries and can be bought in most any bookstore.

  23. I don't understand how I get an email to come here: "For help in figuring out what to do at your precinct caucuses" and all you get is this. This system is just as broke as "the other system".

  24. Thank you for the information on the up comming caucuses. I am ashamed of the lack of fiscal responsibility shown by both parties so will attend to see if I can help make a difference.

    You are a patriot and a blessing to us all.

  25. King County Precinct Caucuses start today at 10:30

    Find your Legislative district, and then your caucus. Unfortunately the only interactive map I found was at this democrat site - but it works, and then use your precinct to find the location of the caucus on the Republican link above.

    Go. Be present. Stand up for Liberty, Freedom, and Conservative values!

    Let’s roll!

  26. Sorry to bug you again, but now that the Precinct Caucuses are over they are now going to have what they call their Legislative Caucuses. It is here where they appoint their delegates to the all important State convention.

    Just to make it even more confusing they don't have it at the same date for everyone. And of course like the Precinct Caucuses they don't advertise it very well. After all you wouldn't want the "wrong" type of people going would you?

    Well again, you have to go to the county Republican web sites for more information.

    Wouldn't it be great if we could have tea party rallies at all these Legislative Caucus sites.

    For more information go to the County Republican web site for each county.

    And for King county a list of the dates and times of these Legislative Caucuses to elect delegates for the state convention is at the link below. Even those who didn't attend the precinct caucuses can attend the Legislative Caucuses and vote for who they want to send as their representatives to Vancouver where the convention will be held.

    http://www.kcgop/org/sitemax/Portals/0/DISTRICT CAUCUS LOCATIONS.pdf

    They make it difficult and confusing for a reason.

    Oh, here is something on Sound Politics regarding what happened at the Precinct Caucuses that you might be interested in reading.

  27. I wish it were possible to trust the people we elect as we could more than 50 years ago when I voted for the first time. I slogged 6 blocks through an early Maine snowstorm that November to vote in my first Presidential election.

    That was back when politicians were mostly trustworthy and we didn't need to keep a sharp eye on them. We CAN take our country back and I sincerely pray that the Tea Party movement is the vehicle to do it.

    Roosevelt's Social Security was quite a scam at the time......a sweet deal for government! Imagine collecting taxes for a program which (at the time) had the same 65 year old requirement to begin collecting but an average life span of 60.5 (white males)
    64.6 (white females, few in the workforce at the time)

    50.2 (black males)
    53.7 (black females)


    White males didn't reach the 65 year life expectancy until 1948 and black males not until 1982.

    Because social security has not been updated to reflect the much longer life span and people and situations which did not qualify in 1934 have been added (not to mention illegals who arrive here after they turn 65 and who if using false identification, also get benefits). Anyway this entitlement program is not only broken but it's "broke" (as in insolvent).

    Medicare was a HUGE mistake, never should have been implemented....I wish I had NEVER signed up for THAT. It's also both broken and "broke". Medicaid? Disgusting but of all the programs, this one is probably the only one which should ever have even been considered. I do believe in assisting truly needy people if the scammers can be kept out of the system but government doesn't really do a good job with that, nor do I think they find it particularly important.

    Can anyone think of any government program that truly works well? Even the US postal service which is partially privatized is not healthy. The last thing we need in this country is another social program to tax the hell out of people for and to ration the benefits thereof!!

    Sorry, here endeth the rant.

  28. Where do you stand on direct democracy? With it, we could vote on issues and control policy directly rather than trying to keep our "representatives" representing our will. It's like trying to get a child to behave well. Of course the Constitution strictly states the US is a democratic republic, meaning we shouldn't be able to manage our own affairs and should instead have wise statesmen control our lives, whom we can occasionally vote on, if we meet certain requirements (white, male, and with property, as the founders intended). But that's just one reason I think the Constitution is flawed.

    Also, many on the right-wing are opposed to direct democracy (notably Glenn Beck and the Constitutionalists), constantly referring to "the Republic." I don't understand. Do they want us to have less freedom? How can they prefer government bureaucracy over the will of the people?

    There are many electoral reforms that should take place to allow us more freedom and control over that which effects our lives. Direct issue voting is one, as I mentioned. Instant run-off voting would be great, since we could get more parties involved and not have to submit to this two-party tyranny, and it's shown to be quite successful in its implementations. Another would be internet voting, which has succeeded in many instances in Europe, though there are obvious potential flaws.

    These kinds of reforms would help reduce government power, increase its accountability, and increase civic engagement nationally - people would actually have an effect on the the political process, so there wouldn't be any more moping around, saying "My vote doesn't matter."

    I'm also interested in you specifically. Did you start out as a Ron Paul supporter? That's where the Tea Party movement seems to have gotten it's start, then more conservatives went along, then Fox News picked it up and co-opted/co-sponsored the movement, and that of course resulted in the movement's huge boost in size and momentum. That usually tends to happen when the mainstream media sponsors something. It happened with the anti-war movement and now it's happening with the Tea Party movement, at least on Fox's behalf, but they set the agenda. Your thoughts?

    Lastly, I wish the right-wing would stop with the "freedom" rhetoric. They act as if the one democratic institution in society is also the only one which takes freedom away. They act as if businesses and private ownership are the only representations of freedom. The fact is, there are two kinds of ownership - state and private. They're both based on the same thing - authority, hierarchy, bureaucracy, and ultimately the threat of violence. They both represent top-down organization. The exception is that the government is actually democratic and requires input from the population to conduct its affairs. You can choose between multiple businesses, but the same can be said about governments.

  29. You are a total fraud and should be ashamed of yourself, I really, really hope something bad happens to you, then you'll be crying for "big government" to bail you out.
    Hypocritical bitch.

  30. I recommend the PBS documentary "Sick Around the World." This video by a veteran reporter compares medical care systems in five countries to the U.S. Basically we spend twice as much and get worse results. Americans live two years shorter lives than people in Holland. We are something like 35th in overall health statistics. Order this video. It costs about $25.
    I lived 12 years in one of the countries with a national health care system (Australia). Medical care there was pretty similar to here (I had two minor surgeries while there and spent a night in an ICU.)
    My conclusion is that the fix for America's problems is to admit that in a complex, interdependent economy, with huge disparities of wealth and income, we need a welfare state. America ought to double taxes and expand public spending for medical care, education, infrastructure and reducing pollution and energy use. The road we are on just doesn't work in the long run. As Jefferson said, "I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just."
    By the way, there is a payoff for the wealthy in a more just society, even if they pay higher taxes. They have more safety and security. They don't have to trip over homeless people on the sidewalks. The economy is more stable--more demand from consumers with redistribution, less investment bubbles that must collapse because the assets can't perform without a mass market.

  31. The deregulation recession made it worthless to keep my URL active for a product line I spent years on. You're right about politics not being so dishonest way back. Deregulation from Reagan to Bush2 led to the Great Recession. Dems rolled over for it and the Iraq lie. Karl Rove borrowed heavily from Josef Goebbels - it can be seen in the speeches in the run up to the Iraq war. Interesting that the 2 great collapses had pub presidents at the helm. I piss off progressives and conservs - I think for myself. I wish Ron Paul could rise to power, he makes a lot of sense. US could take care of itself if not stretched all over the globe. Any country that harbors terrorists or attacks US should be nuked; why waste all our manpower and $ on them? Congress has worked on an IOU system for too long, SS and so on - both parties. Gov't should give what it takes in. Today's pubs have stood in the way of REAL stimulus to small business - the #1 generator of jobs. US can't compete with world anymore as its med costs are 2x ALL the other industrialized democracies. Pubs have always sided with business even when it's against the interests of what's left of the middle class (FASCISM). Medicare would work with a public option where it's mandatory that premiums cover its costs, leading to US being competive again. The reconciliation road Bush2 took to tax the rich less hurt US. I have rich friends who would simply invest their $ to avoid too much taxes; this would energize the economy. The volunteer mil was set up to protect the children of the rich and public outcry/demonstrations against unneeded wars. Obama in not putting heavy strings on his part of Tarp let the criminal banks and Wall St get away with not lending to reputable companies. In closing, Lincoln was a FOOL. The Confederate constitution had term limits in it! Also was going to make babies of slaves free - their way of weaning off of slavery. As a result of the first pub president, the nation is divided forever. If South had seceded, blacks would have done so much better; racism would have died out.

  32. I have just read an article on you and am dumbfounded at your vanity and ignorance. I am convinced your motives albeit, started out with true passion has turned into a narcissistic crusade to launch you in the forefront of media. You are full of complaints, it would not matter who was in office, if it were a tea party leader you would find fault with them too.
    Interview with you, "Ms. Carender is less certain when it comes to explaining, for instance, how to cut the deficit without cutting Medicaid and Medicare.

    “Well,” she said, thinking for a long time and then sighing. “Let’s see. Some days I’m very Randian. I feel like there shouldn’t be any of those programs, that it should all be charitable organizations. Sometimes I think, well, maybe it really should be just state, and there should be no federal part in it at all. I bounce around in my solutions to the problem.”

    Your solution is that it should come from charitable organizations, seriously??? If that were the case we would have more homeless people in the streets, families would starve, a hike in elderly deaths would rise!

    I know that you failed miserably with acting, but your gig is up and I don't buy it. Keep complaining all you want, the only time I will truly ever listen is when you are mature enough to come up with solutions.

  33. Glad to see another rational being in blue Washington. Luckily I'm from the east side of the state but so votes the west side, so votes the state...

  34. My goodness, you certainly have some really nasty, mean spirited posters in here. Of course that's quite easy when you write insults and garbage anonymously, isn't it?

    J Travis Rolko like many other Americans has no idea what the Constitution is all about and even less about what's in it. While he is quite right that the US is NOT a democracy, neither is it (as he states) a representative democracy. This country was established as a representative REPUBLIC and I really wish people would make some attempt to remember it. There are few enough left who ever got any education in American History, and sadly, there will be even fewer as time goes on.

    Mr or Ms Anonymous who thinks the recession was caused by Republicans must be smoking something particularly "hemplike". The slide into today's recession got it's start with Carters "Neighborhood Reinvestment Act" (Why is everything Dems do a 'reinvestment'?) when Banks were required to lend to people who had no hope of paying their mortgages. Along comes Clinton, who thinks there aren't enough bad mortgages out there so he sics Janet Reno on the banks to threaten them with loss of their charters if they don't get busy and throw away even more money. They didn't have much charter, no FDIC insurance and there go the depositors, nobody in their right mind would stay with a bank with no insurance on their deposits! Then of course, all the banks had a problem. They surely didn't want to get stuck with all those worthless loans..........what to do.........oh just bundle them up with the really good loans and sell them to some other institution, preferably some foreign entity. It was a game of "hot potato" and no one wanted to be stuck with those particular potatoes! It was a DEMOCRAT recipe for disaster!

    George Bush tried a total of 5 times to do something about the mortgage mess with Fanny and Freddy and there stands slurping Barney Frank ( Chris Dodd too) telling everyone that there was nothing wrong with Fannie and Freddy. I find it rather interesting that we have heard NOTHING from Rep. Frank of late......I would love to know who told him to "stick a sock in it" but I really like his total silence so I'll not wonder any more. Just glad I don't have to hear any more of his crud!!

    I love this place to do a bit of venting, at least this way my family is spared the tirades!!

  35. Warning about the upcoming Republican convention!

  36. Hi Keli!

    I just discovered your blog and read a few other things you have written! Just wanted to say I truly admire your willingness to stand up for the values our country was founded on, even in the midst of so much opposition and "hate speech" from people who would like to silence anyone who disagrees with them, but who apparently lack the ability to have an intelligent debate. You are well-spoken and informed and speak for many of us!

    Thank you, and please keep fighting!


    -- A libertarian/conservative stay-at-home-mom and wife of a small business owner in Seattle


I believe in free speech, including offensive speech, and especially political speech. Comments that are left on my blog do not necessarily represent my views nor do I necessarily endorse them. I am not responsible for other people's views or comments. That is how the 1st Amendment works.