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Beyond Elections is a new feature-length documentary by Michael Fox & Sílvia Leindecker, distributed PM Press. Watch Film.

Mas Allá de las Elecciones es un nuevo documental por Michael Fox y Sílvia Leindecker, distribuido por PM Press. Ver Película.

Além das Eleições é um novo documentário por Michael Fox e Sílvia Leindecker, distribuído por PM Press. Olhar Film.

Monday, November 3, 2008

U.S. Elections – Demanding Participation

November 3, 2008, by Michael Fox - Beyondelections.com

The Dow may be back up, but the economic crisis isn’t going anywhere fast. According to a recent poll, American citizens are now more pessimistic about the US economy than they have been in more than four decades, and no true structural solutions are being offered. Not only were the culprits of our failing economy let off the hook, but they were actually rewarded for their selfishness and bailed out- with the American people left to front the bill.

But it is not only the financial system that is failing. Across the US, the American people are saying the same thing, “They don’t represent me!” Everyone- from housewives to truck drivers, inner city resident to small farmers are all mad as hell.

Our system is failing. Homeowners and renters are both out on the streets. Unemployment is rising, so is the gap between the rich and the poor. The elderly are losing their pensions. Millions can’t afford health insurance. Presidential approval is at an all-time low. We’re stuck in an unwanted war halfway across the world, but there is little that most Americans feel they can do about it.

And so tomorrow at the polls US citizens face one of the most decisive moments in US history. We will go cast our ballots, and hopefully we will usher in a new clean slate. But then what? Our political system has degenerated in to a political football game. Polls are churned out showing that one candidate or the other has gained points on the other. We use boxing terminology to describe the debates (“he got a few punches in”) and policy is decided by your ability to persuade US citizens, not to listen to them.

Which is exactly what we must demand. “That government of the people, by the people, for the people,” as President Abraham Lincoln said more than a century ago.

Democracy is not something that happens once every four years when you go vote for President, Senator, governor or congressman. It should be an every day act. It can be participatory, and we can no longer leave important local, regional or national decisions in the hands of our elected representatives alone.

They should be held accountable, not to their campaign contributors, but to the citizens who they are supposed to represent. So when we go vote tomorrow, we should not only consider which of the candidates is going to best represent us, but which candidate will be willing to fulfill this commitment and open up the greatest amount of dialogue and communication with the voters. Which candidate will allow him/herself to be held accountable and responsible for their decisions and their campaign promises? Which candidate will pass power to the American people?

Unaccountable politicians and beltway lobbyists got us in to this mess. Only the American people can get us out.

Michael Fox is a Latin America based journalist, reporter and filmmaker. He is Co-director of the recently released documentary, Beyond Elections: Redefining Democracy in the Americas, which has just been on tour around the U.S., and is now available at PM Press.

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Screenings

To schedule a screening contact mike(at)beyondelections.com

Previous Screenings

Outubro 17, 2009- Novo Hamburgo, Brasil
Sabado, Outubro 17 @ 18hr

Seminário Estadual do Acampamento Intercontinental de Juventude - Forum Social Mundial, 10 Anos (FSM)
Sociedade Gaúcha Lomba Grande
Novo Hamburgo, RS

Outubro 15, 2009- Esteio, Brasil
Quinta-Feira, Outubro 15 @
18h30
Casa de Cultura Lufredina Araújo Gaya

Esteio, RS
*Debate com os diretores

September 28, 2009- Tshwane (Pretoria), South Africa
Monday, September 28 @ 4pm
The Institute for Democracy in Africa (IDASA)

357 Visagie Street (corner Prinsloo), Pretoria
**Q&A w/ Directors, Michael Fox & Sílvia Leindecker

September 16, 2009- Austin, Texas
Wednesday, September 16 @ 8pm
MonkeyWrench Books,
110 E. North Loop, Austin, Texas

July 19-21, 2009 - Cape Town, South Africa

The While You Were Sleeping Collective will be hosting screenings of Beyond Elections at the Labia Cinema on Orange Street, Cape Town, on the following dates:
Sun 19 July 6:15pm
Mon 20 July 8:30pm
Tue 21 July 8:30pm


Julho 20, 2009 - Porto Alegre, Brasil
Segunda-feira, 20 de julho, as 19:30
Sala de cinema do SindBancários (CineBancários)
Rua General Câmara 424 - Centro - Porto Alegre.

Julho 21, 2009 - São Leopoldo, Brasil
Terça-feira, 21 de julho, as 10:00 am
São Leopoldo Fest, Espaço Pensamento
Localização

La Ciudad de Guatemala, Guatemala, 6 de Mayo, 2009, 7pm, Blanco y Negro: 7pm, Zona 1, 9a calle entre 6a y 7a Avenida, Pasaje Aycinena.

Atlanta, Georgia, 4th Annual Latin American Caribbean Film Festival 2009

Orlando, Florida,
February 13, 2009, 3:30pm, FL Interactive Entertainment Academy, Orlando Latin American Film Festival

World Social Forum, Belém, Brasil, January 31, 2009, 4:30pm, The Federal University of the Amazon (UFRA) Theater – CASA PAN AMAZÔNICA


2008


Baltimore, Sept. 11, 2008, 6:30 pm, Red Emma's

New York City, Sept. 14, 2008, 7pm
, Bluestockings
Chicago, Sept. 16, TBA

Milwaukee, Thursday, Sept. 18, 2008, 7pm,
People's Book Cooperative

Madison, Friday, Sept. 19, 2008, 7 pm,
Electric Earth Coffeehouse (546 W. Washington Ave, Madison, WI)

Minneapolis, Saturday, Sept. 20, 2008, 10 am,
Resource Center of the Americas
Saturday, Sept. 20, 2008, 7pm, Macalester College, 1600 Grand Avenue, St. Paul
(Davis Lecture Hall, Student Center, SW corner of Grand & Snelling) MAP

Bay Area, California, Sept. 27-30
Global Exchange

San Diego, Oct. 1-3
Monte Perdido

Santa Fe, New Mexico, Friday, Oct. 10, 2008, 7pm,
The Santa Fe Complex. Click for directions.

Oklahoma City, Monday, Oct. 13, 2008,
house party, call for directions

New Orleans, Thursday, Oct. 16, 2008, 6pm,
Lowernine.org, 6018 El Dorado Street

Atlanta, Georgia, Sunday, Oct. 19, 2008, 5:30pm
, Little Five Points Community Center, 1083 Austin Ave, Room 105 (call 404.610.2807 for more information) Presented by the Latin American and Caribbean Community Center

Asheville, North Carolina, Monday, Oct. 20
, 2008, 7:30pm, Asheville Pizza and Brewing Company (77 Coxe Avenue)

Washington DC, Thursday, Oct. 23, 2008, 7:30pm, The People's MEDIA Center, ( 3142 Georgia Ave., NW, Located between Kansas & Taylor, 4 blocks North of Petworth Metro
Green/Yellow Line Metro. Bus #64, 70, 71)

Philadelphia, PA, Friday, Oct. 24, 2008, 7pm, Prometheus Radio Project (Calvary Church, 48th & Baltimore Ave. West Philly)

New York City, Sunday, Oct. 26, 2008, 7pm, The IRT Theater (154 Christopher St #3B, btw Washington & Greenwich Streets)

New Paltz, NY, Tuesday, Oct. 28, 2008, 5pm, SUNY, New Paltz,

(CSB Auditorium, click for directions)
Amherst, Mass., Wednesday, Oct. 29, 2008, 7:30pm, Hampshire College (Franklin Paterson Hall in the East lecture Hall)

Boston, Mass., Thursday, Oct. 30, 2008, 8pm, MIT (Building 7, 4th floor, Audio Visual Lab, 77 Mass. Ave)

Washington DC, Saturday, November 1, 2008, 11 pm,
Busboys & Poets (5th & K, 1025 5th St, NW)

Arlington, VA, Sunday, November 2, 2008, 8pm, Busboys & Poets (Busboys @ Shirlington,
4251 South Campbell Ave, Arlington, VA)


Other Beyond Election Presentations
*CANADIAN PREMIER*
Halifax, Canada,
Thursday, October 9th, 2008, 7 pm, Weldon Law Building, 6061 University Ave, Room 105

Toronto, Canada, Thursday, October 16, 2008, 7:30- 9:30pm, Learning Democracy by Doing Conference, (University of Toronto, 252 Bloor St. West)

Burlington, Vermont, October 16, 2008, 7pm, Burlington College (95 North Avenue, Burlington)

St. Paul, MN, Friday, Dec 5, 2008 • 7 PM, House Party! 464 Dayton Ave #4, St Paul, MN 55102, (Contact Sarah Humpage, 651-592-9693 cell or 651-340-9336) Resource Center of the Americas

Los Angeles, CA, Saturday, Dec 6, 2008 • 7 PM, Eastside Café, 5469 No. Huntington Dr., El Sereno, CA 90032

Oakland, CA, Tuesday, Dec 16, 2008 • 7 PM, Niebyl-Proctor Library, 6501 Telegraph Ave
OAKLAND (Marin Interfaith Task Force on the Americas)