DEMOCRATIZING DEFENSE CONFERENCE

The Democratizing Defense Conference will explore the many ways that democratic principles are abandoned in the name of "national defense" and will move forward efforts to establish a democratic alternative to endless war. On both small and large levels, the federal and state governments turn blind eyes to the Constitution, international law, labor rights of military employees, and the will of the people in issues regarding the military and war. And the increasing dependence on drones and a robotized military threatens to undermine what democratic control over our military that remains.

  • How is it possible for the president to ignore the Constitution and enter military conflict without the approval of Congress?
  • What role does the will of the people have in beginning or ending military conflict?
  • Can military drones and robot armies play any positive role in a democratic society?
  • Should soldiers be forced to work beyond the terms of their enlistment “agreement?”

This conference will look into these questions and many others with experts from both the legal and military communities.

Veterans for Peace, CODE PINK, and War is a Crime are the primary conveners of the Democratizing Defense Conference.  Contact Leah Bolger at bolgerleah@gmail.com for more info.

If you haven't already done so, be sure to register now!

Full Conference Agenda Below:

CONVENTION OPENING PLENARY with Gar Alperovitz

KEYNOTE: Gar Alperovitz on “The Next American Revolution”

with Medea Benjamin as the MC and Wisconsin Welcome by Bryan Kennedy

Date: 
August 7, 2013 - 7:00pm - 9:00pm

Location

Madison Masonic Center
301 Wisconsin Ave
Session type: 
Keynote
Speaker(s): 
Bryan Kennedy
Speaker(s): 
Gar Alperovitz
Speaker(s): 
Medea Benjamin

Democracy vs Drones

Can a democracy use drones abroad or domestically? Do drone murders uphold the rule of law or destroy it? Do surveillance drones make us free or strip away our rights? Are false beliefs about drones leading us down a dangerous path? How can we bring drones under control? And is there any place for good or harmless uses of drones? Join a discussion of what is being done and what can be done to put the interests of humans ahead of those of killer flying robots.

Date: 
August 8, 2013 - 9:00am - 10:30am
Session type: 
Panel
Speaker(s): 
Dave Mitchell
Speaker(s): 
Joe Scarry
Speaker(s): 
Medea Benjamin

A Call to Action for a Nuclear-Free Future by 2020

Nuclear abolition is an urgent necessity. Let’s find ways to work together, each in our own ways. 1) WILPFUS promotes HR 1650 and US Conference of Mayors 2012 and 2013 Resolutions calling for abolition by 2020. 2) Acts to stop US nuclear missile testing and nuclear industry expansion. 3) Urges US participation in current creative international initiatives of 134 non-nuclear powers. 4) Believes whole nuclear chain is killing us and our planet. Acts locally to close nuclear power plants, end uranium mining, waste accumulation, DU and nuclear weapons production.

Date: 
August 8, 2013 - 11:00am - 12:30pm

Location

Madison College D331
Session type: 
Workshop
Speaker(s): 
Carol Urner
Speaker(s): 
Ellen Thomas

Giving the People Constitutional Power Over War: Rediscovering the War Referendum Amendment

What can we learn from the history of the 1930s-era campaign for a War Referendum Amendment, together with the 1970s-era People Power Over War Amendment, both of which would have established a deliberative national referendum process on war?

Date: 
August 8, 2013 - 2:00pm - 3:30pm

Location

Madison College D425
Session type: 
Workshop
Speaker(s): 
Ben Manski
Speaker(s): 
David Swanson

How to Build a Movement to End War and Restore Liberty Wherever You Live

Date: 
August 8, 2013 - 2:00pm - 5:00pm
Session type: 
Panel
Speaker(s): 
Debra Sweet
Speaker(s): 
George Friday
Speaker(s): 
Shahid Buttar

What If We Spread Democracy to the United States?

Date: 
August 8, 2013 - 4:00pm - 5:30pm
Session type: 
Panel
Speaker(s): 
Coleen Rowley
Speaker(s): 
David Swanson
Speaker(s): 
George Martin

WILPF Peace and Freedom Dinner

WILPF Peace and Freedom Dinner at Bethel Lutheran Church (312 Wisconsin Ave)

Fresh local food prepared with love by Madison WILPF (Women’s International League for
Peace and Freedom) in honor of Democracy and Veterans for Peace.

Date: 
August 8, 2013 - 5:00pm - 7:00pm
Session type: 
General

CONVENTION ROUNDTABLE PLENARY

One delegate from each of the nine Democracy Convention conferences join in an animated discussion of the years ahead in the U.S. democracy movement.

Inn on the Park, 22 S. Carroll, Wisconsin Hall

Date: 
August 8, 2013 - 7:00pm - 9:00pm
Session type: 
Panel
Speaker(s): 
Ben Manski
Speaker(s): 
George Friday
Speaker(s): 
Jill Stein
Speaker(s): 
Leah Bolger
Speaker(s): 
Leland Pan
Speaker(s): 
Margaret Flowers
Speaker(s): 
Norm Stockwell
Speaker(s): 
Richard Monje
Speaker(s): 
Roshan Bliss
Speaker(s): 
Victoria Collier

Democracy Within the Military: What Would it Look Like?

How has the U.S. military, from its inception, deprived its soldiers of the basic human rights every living individual is entitled to, and the civil rights that the U.S. Constitution guarantees its citizens? Specific examples with be given, showing that this has been a constant throughout U.S. history. Evidence of the impact this has had on soldiers will be presented. Additionally, fundamental changes that would ensure the preservation of these rights to the members of the military will be discussed, and finally, the "Our Lives, Our Rights" campaign will be explained and discussed.

Date: 
August 9, 2013 - 9:00am - 10:30am
Session type: 
Panel
Speaker(s): 
Michael Prysner
Speaker(s): 
Robert Fantina

How "Waging Peace" Training Can Save Our Democracy

Date: 
August 9, 2013 - 11:00am - 12:30pm
Session type: 
Workshop
Speaker(s): 
Paul Chappell

Life Without War

Is the next war inevitable? How do we begin organizing a world beyond it? What might a world without war look like? What should we do first?

Date: 
August 9, 2013 - 4:00pm - 5:30pm
Session type: 
Panel
Speaker(s): 
David Swanson
Speaker(s): 
Robert Koehler

Evening Social at Osaka House

Evening Social at Osaka House (505 State St) hosted by the Economic Democracy and Representative Democracy Conferences

Date: 
August 9, 2013 - 9:00pm - 11:00pm
Session type: 
General

Democratizing the Military "Entitlement" System

Date: 
August 10, 2013 - 9:00am - 10:30am
Session type: 
Workshop
Speaker(s): 
Ann Wright

Militarism and Environmental Destruction--Making the Connection

UXO, Chemical, Heavy Metal and Radioactive Contamination. Use of oil and other resources by the military. Scarcity of Resources as an Excuse for War. A campaign calling for cleanup of current and former military bases, prevention of further military contamination of the planet. Close the bases, stop the wars, stop mining uranium and (re)manufacturing radioactive weapons, stop testing weapons, stop bombing paradise to practice for war, stop the war “games”.

Date: 
August 10, 2013 - 11:00am - 12:30pm
Session type: 
Workshop
Speaker(s): 
Helen Jaccard

Declarations of War--Who decides?

The U.S. has not formally issued a declaration of war since WWII. Are Authorizations for the Use of Military Force (AUMFs) in compliance with the War Powers Act? With the Constitution? Is the AUMF which was passed in 2001 still valid? Has the Congress abdicated their responsibilities, and has the President claimed them? What role does the people's voice have in decisions about war?

Date: 
August 10, 2013 - 2:00pm - 3:30pm
Session type: 
Panel
Speaker(s): 
Ben Manski
Speaker(s): 
Leah Bolger

Local Food Democracy Reception

Sample and purchase local produce from South Central Wisconsin

Madison College Downtown Patio ~ Organized by Family Farm Defenders

Date: 
August 10, 2013 - 4:30pm - 5:30pm
Session type: 
General

Evening Social at The Rigby

Evening Social at The Rigby (119 E Main St) hosted by the Earth Democracy Conference. Head-Roc and Ryan Harvey will be performing.

Date: 
August 10, 2013 - 7:00pm - 11:00pm
Session type: 
General
Speaker(s): 
Head - Roc
Speaker(s): 
Ryan Harvey

CONVENTION CLOSING PLENARY: Call to Action

The keynote address will be followed by a facilitated discussion to give each conference a chance
to share the big ideas that came out of their event as well as the next steps everyone can take to further the democracy movement in the months and years ahead.

Date: 
August 11, 2013 - 2:00pm - 4:00pm
Session type: 
Keynote
Speaker(s): 
Debra White Plume

CODEPINK: Women for Peace

CODEPINK is a women-initiated grassroots peace and social justice movement working to end U.S. funded wars and occupations, to challenge militarism globally, and to redirect our resources into health care, education, green jobs and other life-affirming activities. Won't you join us?

Liberty Tree Foundation

The Democracy Convention is a project of Liberty Tree. Liberty Tree is uniquely committed to building a new democracy movement for the U.S.A.. We provide vital support to grassroots campaigns for democratic reform in many areas of American life, and bring those campaigns together to form a united movement for democracy.

Veterans for Peace

Veterans For Peace is a global organization of Military Veterans and allies whose collective efforts are to build a culture of peace by using our experiences and lifting our voices. We inform the public of the true causes of war and the enormous costs of wars, with an obligation to heal the wounds of wars. Our network is comprised of over 140 chapters worldwide whose work includes: educating the public, advocating for a dismantling of the war economy, providing services that assist veterans and victims of war, and most significantly, working to end all wars.

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ABOUT THE CONVENTION

If you want to strengthen democracy where it matters most -- in our communities, our schools, our workplaces and local economies, our military, our government, our media, our constitution -- you will find something inspiring in Madison this August. Learn More →

ABOUT LIBERTY TREE

The Democracy Convention is a project of Liberty Tree, a strategy center uniquely committed to building a new democracy movement for the U.S.A.. Liberty Tree supports and unites campaigns for democratic reform across many areas of life. Liberty Tree logo

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