Demand Congress Do What the President Won’t: Increase Cybersecurity
Probably the greatest threat to any nation in the 21st century is not conventional war or even nuclear war, but cyberwar. If a country could disable another country's infrastructure in energy, transportation or finance, the damage would be incalculable. So the news this week that at least six US government departments were breached in a likely Russian intelligence operation perhaps begun as far back as March, is both alarming and intolerable. Those departments include Homeland Security, the Pentagon, National Institute of Health, the Departments of State, Energy, Treasury and Commerce; exactly the agencies our government would attack if we wanted to destroy Russia, China or North Korea.
While we are being told that “there is no evidence that classified networks were compromised, it is not known what the hackers may have stolen or how long it will take to purge them.” Also not known is when we will learn how much damage has been done. Nevertheless, despite this being the greatest cybersecurity breach in US history, Trump had remained silent for days and then when he finally acknowledged the violation he contradicted Secretary of State Pompeo and suggested it “may be the Chinese” rather than the Russians.
We have the most expensive military in the history of the world, we are told it is the most sophisticated, but our own government security did not prevent this breach, it didn’t even detect it, that was done by the cybersecurity firm FireEye. Where is all that Pentagon money going? The department that should protect us got breached. Where is our security?
We spend billions on our military and we have millions of people out of work. Tell Congress to put people to work in ways that benefit us all, not building F-35s or nuclear bombs we dare never use.
Read about it here:
Action: Contact our Senators
Script: My name is ____________, and I’m a member of Olympia Indivisible. I am calling to insist that the US Congress perform their most basic function, protect the American people. It is clear that Donald Trump is not going to do anything further regarding the duties of his office, but members of Congress must act and straight away.
First, take all measures necessary to safeguard our government agencies, second, investigate how this breach was possible to begin with and third fund and train the tens of thousands of people necessary to protect our nation from further attacks on our cybersecurity. Where has all that money gone?
What’s In A Name? Stop Calling Armed Gangs “Militias”
How we name something gives it an identity. Today, the biggest threat to public safety in our country comes from right-wing gangs that hide behind the name “militia.”
The term militia actually refers to a citizen military controlled at the state level, otherwise known as the National Guard. This is the only organization in our country that can use this term. It is ILLEGAL to form private militias. You can read more about this here: Armed Right-Wing Groups Aren’t ‘Militias’—We Need to Stop Calling Them That
Unfortunately, the media continues to give these gangs credibility by referring to them as right-wing militias. This practice not only legitimizes them, but helps them recruit new members who somehow feel patriotic in trying to overthrow our country.
Action: Let’s push back now by insisting that media outlets stop legitimizing these groups. Below are links to major news organizations that you can email with a simple click. Write your own message, or copy and paste the one below.
Script: Dear _________,
As a concerned citizen, I am asking you to stop using the term “militia” when referring to armed extremist gangs in our country. It is illegal to organize private militias. The only legal citizen militia is our National Guard. At this moment, right-wing extremism is responsible for the greatest amount of terrorist violence in our country.
Referring to them as “militias” legitimizes their behavior and aids them in recruiting members out of a distorted sense of patriotism that seeks to overthrow our country.
Ethical Journalism is the bedrock of our country. Renaming these groups for what they actually are, armed extremist gangs, will help make our country safer.
Contact these media outlets to request they stop referring to vigilante groups as militias:
To contact The Seattle Times:
Go to : The Seattle Times Contact Page and select ‘Contact the Newsroom” and select the news feedback button, and submit your script.
Join a Georgia Instagram Party!
Find Out How to Send Instagram Messages to Get Out the Vote in Georgia
Flip the West is hosting a special virtual Instagram Party tomorrow, Monday, December 21, at 3:00 PT to get out the vote for the Georgia runoff election. Sign up to learn how to send Instagram messages to Georgia voters. You’ll receive an email from Flip the West with the Zoom link, script, and training materials. Sign up HERE
What you need: You’ll need an Instagram account. Load Instagram on your PC or Mac, as it is a more efficient way to converse with voters. If you don't have a computer, you can use your cell phone.
Sign up for an Instagram account HERE.
Help the Thurston County Food Bank and Help Someone You Know Who Needs Paid Work
The Thurston County Food Bank desperately needs volunteers at their two warehouses to help pack food into boxes and bags. Since Thanksgiving, people who need food have increased by 33%. The Food Bank is getting sufficient food and $$ donations, but the pandemic has decimated their volunteer staff. On average, 12 older volunteers each week have dropped their shifts. Without volunteers to pack the food, people in need will not receive food.
Here’s a way to help both the TC Food Bank and someone you know who needs paid work each week. Pay someone you know to “volunteer.” Volunteer shifts are between 3-4 hours per day. Warehouse locations are downtown Olympia and at the Mottman Road Warehouse (near the South Puget Sound Community College.) According to Judy Jones, TC Food Bank Development Director, all workers and volunteers are masked, gloved, and socially distanced. There have been no reported COVID cases at the TC Food Bank.
For more information about volunteering at the TC Food Bank ~
Thurston County Food Bank Volunteer
Sanction Rep. Robert Sutherland for Advocating Civil War!
The Seattle Times 12/16/2020 article ‘Prepare for war:’ A local GOP official goes all-in with election conspiracy theories reported that Washington State Rep. Robert Sutherland told his followers on Facebook not to accept the results of the presidential election — and to “prepare for war.”
A representative from Granite Falls in Snohomish County, Sutherland also spurred controversy earlier this year by going to an all citizen-militia last summer and patrolled at a protest with his gun. For taunting the governor at one rally, saying “you send your goons with guns, we will defend ourselves,” he got rebuked by the Washington Association of Sheriffs and Police Chiefs.
Action: Email Republican Minority Leader J.T. Wilcox and ask him to sanction Rep. Robert Sutherland.
Script: I'm contacting you as Republican Minority Leader for our State, and I want to thank you for speaking out against the unsubstantiated cries of fraud that have led to threats against public officials following President Donald Trump’s loss.
I am appalled that a WA representative joined those advocating for a Civil War. The Seattle Times quotes Rep. Robert Sutherland asking his followers to “Prepare for war”.
I am asking you to condemn Rep. Robert Sutherland’s insane rhetoric and his participation in an armed vigilante group. I ask that you remove him from the Republican Caucus. We can not allow legislators who authorize the overthrow of the government to sit on House Committees.
This is a Thank You Note
Thank You Olympia Area Postcard Writers! Congratulations on a job well done.
8250 postcards have been distributed to Olympia area volunteers to write for the Georgia senate run-off elections! Terrific work! These postcards encourage inconsistent voters to vote in person on Election Day. We wish them well.
Thanks to everyone who helped with their time, energy, and stamps.
For those still writing, we have until December 26 to mail the cards.
Merry Christmas to All!