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Michael Moore: Call Your Congresspeople, Protest, and Run for Office

An eager reader shares filmmaker Michael Moore’s latest post on how to resist tyranny. Moore recommends five specific actions:

  1. “Make your presence known” by telling your Representative and Senators to block all the damage Trump is going to do or expect to lose their seat in 2018 at the hands of a Tea Party 2010-style revolt. This recommendation fits with “Indivisible,” a resistance guide compiled by former congressional staffers recommending an application of 2010 Tea Party strategy to today’s anti-Trumpism.
  2. “Write to the DNC tonight” and tell them to elect Minnesota Congressman Keith Ellison as their chair. Ellison is Bernie Sanders’s pick for leading the Democratic Party. Whether the DNC pick makes any difference to rejuvenating the South Dakota Democratic Party remains to be seen; for what it’s worth, Rep. Ellison says “Howard Dean was right to say we need a 50-state strategy, but we got to go beyond that now. We need a 3,141-county strategy.”
  3. “Form your own Rapid Response Team” of five to ten neighbors “to email elected reps, make calls, post on social media, go to protests and/or organize others at work, school or in the neighborhood” in response to each new bad plan from the Trump White House and Congress.
  4. “Make plans now to be at the Inauguration Weekend protests“—Inauguration is a Friday; the Women’s March on Washington is that Saturday. I check Expedia for flights from Aberdeen to D.C., arriving Thursday, January 19, flying out Sunday, January 22, and find prices starting at $1,004.70 for the three-hopper via Minneapolis and (really?) Raleigh-Durham. The Trump Hotel website says all of its rooms a mile from the White House are booked during that period, but rooms from January 23 start at $552 a night.
  5. “Run for office…. It’s time to stop carping about politicians and become one.” Do it yourself—that’s the best advice I’ve heard.


  1. MC 2016-12-28 11:35

    Can I add “Become Informed on the Issues.” All too often people come out protesting about X subject and they have know idea what they are protesting or how it affect them

  2. caheidelberger Post author | 2016-12-28 11:42

    You can certainly add that recommendation, MC… although I take it as a given that people reading Dakota Free Press have already adopted that practice. :-)

  3. Loren 2016-12-28 15:03

    Guess we can try, but it has been my observation that our delegation pretty much takes their marching orders from the Republican daily talking points memo and runs with it.

  4. mike from iowa 2016-12-28 16:47

    Error on the side of trusting your instincts. Your instincts tell you wingnuts are bad-go with your instincts.

    Were any Russians involved with EB-5? You had wingnuts and the FBI involved. Just wondering.

  5. MC 2016-12-28 18:18

    I am going to add a few more items as some who receives E-mail, letters, visits, private messages, and just about every other means of communicating.

    Drop the form letter. I want to hear from you, in your own words. When I get a couple of letters that same the same thing word for word, know the message is bound for the trash bin. Form letters are also incredibly easy to spot. If you choose to use a form letter as least add something to it.

    Sign your name! I want to know who is behind the words. Letters that are not signed or don’t have a name lose credibility quickly. I will read it, without a name. it is not worth very much. Okay I know, I use MC on the blogs, I’m not hiding who I am, I use the same across all the blogs I comment/post on. not to hide but to be consistent

    If you call me, make sure you are speaking to me on the phone. You can call me names, insult me, thank me, all the fun stuff. You do that kind of stuff to my wife or daughter you will make an enemy really quick. My family and the families of other legislators are off-limits.

    Respect our time. If anyone remember Dusty Johnston elevator campaign speech That is what you want to go for. Say what needs to be said, and save your breath for breath’n.

    Most importantly, we want to hear from you. We want to know how you feel about X topic, and why. We don’t want tired talking points; we don’t want rants. We want your opinion in your words

  6. John 2016-12-28 20:14

    “Tyranny does not begin with violence; it begins with the first gesture of collaboration. Its most enduring crime is drawing decent men and women into its siege of truth.”
    – Evan Osnos, in When Tyranny Takes Hold

    What we’re up against. What we’re dealing with. Dash your childish delusion of defeating it with ‘hope’ or ‘reason’.
    The next years seasons of parades in the US we’ll see comically uniformed buffoons with dangerous ideas permitted to participate across the US instead of being ridiculed or taken out to be shot (haven’t enough Americans and others died in the challenge of these stupid ideas (WWI, WWII, etc?). I, and thousands, patrolled another fools Iron Curtain — now we are coming full-circle to suppress human liberty, human rights, the free exchange of ideas, freedom of religion and association, and self-determination. We are meeting the enemy; and it is us.
    Two great articles from and about Hungary, a recently a shining liberal democracy. (Budapest was my second favorite city, behind Vienna). But now Hungary is an autocratic populist nation declaring migrants as rapists, job stealers, and with a hundred plus mile border fence. No wonder Trump declares admiration and ‘friendship’ of the prime minister of Hungary. He’s right up there with Putin for a disciple of freedom.

  7. caheidelberger Post author | 2016-12-29 06:45

    Indeed, Loren: as the Indivisible authors point out, pressure on one’s Congressional delegation depends on one thing: the ability to credibly threaten their reëlection. In South Dakota, that means we progressive patriots can’t just call Noem, Thune, and Rounds; we also have to work on a campaign to make our fellow voters recognize that Trump is bad for South Dakota and convince them to consider voting for someone else in 2018 (or, Rounds’s case, 2020). Since Noem is leaving Congress (if she hasn’t already mentally left), that means our pressure must take the form of reminding her that she faces a tough primary battle in 2018… but then looking for ways to convince her that her Trumpist base might abandon her and Trump over some of Trump’s bad decisions.

  8. caheidelberger Post author | 2016-12-29 06:46

    Mike, there was that Russian rail company whose Cyprus branch got money from Northern Beef Packers….

  9. caheidelberger Post author | 2016-12-29 06:47

    MC (Rep.-Elect Michael Clark, R-9/Hartford, for those of you just joining us), I’m sure we’ll give you your share of communications. Do you plan to resist the Trumpist agenda in Pierre?

  10. caheidelberger Post author | 2016-12-29 06:58

    John, frightening Faludi article about Hungary. Keenly relevant:

    “I’m very worried about what is happening in this country,” Lévai says to me that day at the cafe. “The nation is being divided into two kinds of people, the ‘good Hungarians’ and the ‘bad Hungarians.’ And the bad Hungarians are all those who are not crying over Trianon every day, or who are Jewish or Roma or feminist.” The “good Hungarians” have redefined themselves as the injured minority who deserve “special care,” the true victims of discrimination and oppression. To contradict this new dogma is to risk recasting yourself among the “bad” [Susan Faludi, Pity, O God, the Republicans,” The Baffler, 2016, No. 31].

    All the more reason for Michael Moore and other members of the Resistance to speak up, to be vocal, to demonstrate their majority, and signal to all protestors that they are not alone, that they should not be intimidated into silence or collaboration.

  11. mike from iowa 2016-12-29 07:43

    There you go, Cory. Definitive proof of collusion between wingnuts, our gubmint and Russia twice. Conspiracies abound. Wake up, Americans.

  12. Robert McTaggart 2016-12-29 08:55

    Is Michael Moore going to run for office?

  13. caheidelberger Post author | 2016-12-29 10:54

    Moore mentions that he won election to his local school board at age 18. We could argue he’s already done his part for #5, but I would be interested to see how he’d fare in another, bigger election. Trump has shown blowhards can win; imagine what we could do with a blowhard with brains. ;-)

  14. Robert McTaggart 2016-12-29 11:02

    Don’t you think that for the Democrats it is more likely that the next presidential candidate will come out of nowhere? Maybe a career politician will not do well, but somebody who at least has participated in some kind of sausage-making regarding legislation and budgets, be that at the state level or House of Representatives.

    Someone older with Senate experience will run, but they will have some headwinds to counter because of the way that Trump won.

  15. Roger Cornelius 2016-12-29 11:35

    Michael Moore for DNC chairman.

  16. Robert McTaggart 2016-12-29 12:45

    Do you mean the “chair man” who makes sure that there are enough seats at the convention ;^).

  17. John 2016-12-29 12:54

    George Soros sees the reality of what we up against.

    “Open societies are in crisis, and various forms of closed societies – from fascist dictatorships to mafia states – are on the rise. How could this happen? The only explanation I can find is that elected leaders failed to meet voters’ legitimate expectations and aspirations and that this failure led electorates to become disenchanted with the prevailing versions of democracy and capitalism. Quite simply, many people felt that the elites had stolen their democracy.”

    Then these same people are handing the reigns of their society to the authoritarians. . . .

  18. leslie 2016-12-30 05:23

    “Brutality of the 21st Century”–BBC today. Reap what you sow is the biblical adage. Brennan, Bollen, Sveen, SD Tres Amigos, Trump, Putin, Filipinas’ prez, el Chapo, Flynn , Bannon, CMM, Assad, Kim JUNG UN, Netenyahu, Maine’s mayor, Bundy, Republicans, NC’s outgoing Republican governor is it?

  19. leslie 2016-12-30 16:10

    CMM- the nation magazine’s CONSERVATIVE MEDIA MACHINE…I like it!

    the trump/bannon/breitbart campaign included hacking the democrats in 2015 setting up malware and then in 2016, and latest FBI report shows hackers in “red” and victims (Dems) in blue, equating red states, tea partiers, republicans with Putin’s hacks. Federal Bureau of Investigation 13-page report co-authored with the Department of Homeland Security. (

  20. leslie 2016-12-30 16:20

    good article John. Thx

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