Monday, August 15, 2011

How Dangerous is ALEC?

Stacks of magazines tend to pile up in the summer months, but yesterday I finally picked up the issue of The Nation with ALEC Exposed on the cover. If you are not familiar with them, ALEC stands for American Legislative Exchange Council. The group has been around for decades, but once the 2010 midterm elections shifted control of the US House of Representatives and many state governor seats, they threw a hail mary--ALEC went for it, and by went for it, I mean they decided that the time was right to rapidly ram legislation through state governments.

And make no mistake, they are right wing and radical in every sense of those terms. And they are responsible for drafting legislation in states like Wisconsin, New Jersey, Ohio, Michigan and Florida to bust up unions, privatize education, suppress voters, and decrease the size of government. In short, everything the right stands for --and so if you're looking for the playbook from which it seems the likes of Scott Walker, Chris Christie and John Kasich are drawing plays from, this is where you should start. Also, as you might expect, the Koch brothers and other corporate heavyweights have a huge hand in what ALEC is about.

Thankfully, folks like us are catching on. And part of the reason we're catching on is by reading publications such as The Nation, The Progressive Magazine and Brad Blog; and also with the help of initiatives such as Alex Exposed. Please read this and pass it on to everyone you know. If we can continue to educate ourselves on how radical groups like ALEC are threatening the fabric of our democracy, and learning how we can combat them, we have a chance to squelch them. And it's extremely important to do that before the 2012 elections.

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