Our Plan to Stop Trump, and Fascism, in Wisconsin

Our Plan to Stop Trump, and Fascism, in Wisconsin

Last Tuesday, I wrote that after reading the Supreme Court's ruling that placed American presidents above the law, which means that Trump will probably not be held accountable for the crimes he committed on and before the January 6th insurrection, I was shaken to the core.

I also wrote a few days earlier that I was beyond angry that America's establishment media piled on against Biden after he had a few "senior moments" at the last debate.

Between these two forces working at odds against Biden, and the conservative media's relentless misinformation campaign that falsely paints Biden's America as an inflationary criminal hellscape, the task of stopping Fascism in America has become more daunting than ever.

I meant to say that the task of stopping Trump was more daunting than ever, not the task of stopping Fascism, right? Aren't the two different?

No, they're not.

The graphic pictured above tells us what America's future will look like with Trump as President. The Heritage Foundation's "Project 2025" is a policy roadmap, created by former Trump advisors, that takes many of its cues from prior Fascist and Christian Nationalist regimes, including Hitler's Germany, Mussolini's Italy, and Orbán's Hungary. This list of dystopian policies should strike fear into the heart of every American.

With the Supreme Court's ruling last Monday, along with its reversal of Roe v. Wade, the reversal of the Chevron deference, and many other harmful decisions, I no longer believe that progressives can "play by the rules," because SCOTUS keeps changing those rules to make it easier to strengthen American Fascism.

History shows us a path forward whenever America gets too far off the rails, and that path forward requires grass roots RADICALISM.

In 1776, when England made life for American landowners too hard to endure, they wrote a document called the "Declaration of Independence," which proposed a very radical idea that "all men are created equal,"--not just the rich in England who ruled over them unfairly. A little over a hundred years later, we had to get radical again and fight a Civil War to expand that same ideal to people of color. Around 100 years after that, we employed radicalism yet again during the Civil Rights Movement to force our leaders to get back on track and adhere to the same American ideal, "all men are created equal," that formed our country.

Well, about 80 years after the Civil Rights Movement, SCOTUS just took America off the rails again. They ruled that our president is above the law, which is a direct contradiction to America's core belief that "all men are created equal." 

What does that mean?

It's time to get radical again.

Believe it or not, there's a guidebook for how to use grass roots radicalism to beat back Fascism, authoritarianism, and all the other awful "isms" that currently plague our country.

This guidebook, called Rules for Radicals, was written by Saul Alinsky, a prominent 20th century political theorist, activist, and community organizer.

Two of his "Rules for Radicals" strike a chord with me today.  They are:

  1. "Make the enemy live up to its own book of rules."
  2. "Ridicule is man's most potent weapon. There is no defense. It is almost impossible to counterattack ridicule. Also it infuriates the opposition, who then react to your advantage."

Employing Rule #1, which says "Make the enemy live up to its own book of rules," seems pretty easy to me.

The Supreme Court just ruled that the President is above the law, and Joe Biden is our current President. I believe he should either nominate 4 more progressive Supreme Court justices to the court before his term is up and/or remove 4 of the conservative justices that a) shouldn't legally be there in the first place, b) have essentially proven themselves corrupt, or c) are unable to be impartial to crimes committed during the January 6th insurrection.

It is obvious to any student of recent American history that Neil Gorsuch is an illegitimate Supreme Court Justice. He was only appointed because Mitch McConnell refused to allow a vote on Obama's nominee, Merrick Garland, for almost a year (293 days). Similarly, after Ruth Ginsburg died, the same Republicans jammed Trump's nominee, Amy Coney Barrett, through to the Supreme Court in a record 30 days, less than a month before Biden won the election. The hypocrisy was staggering and arguably illegal.

Similarly, Justices Alito and Thomas have not only accepted bribes by rich men who ultimately had cases before them, but they are also linked inextricably as supporters of the Jan. 6 insurrection.  

Given how Republicans and our conservative Supreme Court justices have created their own rules by completely ignoring historical precedent, we must now use those new rules against them. We can't "go high when they go low" if "going high" means allowing them to create an illegal and highly partisan system of justice.

Now let's talk about Alinsky's other rule:  

"Ridicule is man's most potent weapon. There is no defense. It is almost impossible to counterattack ridicule. Also it infuriates the opposition, who then react to your advantage."

Here is where the Minocqua Brewing Company comes in.

We created a slogan that ridicules Donald Trump called "NOPE." This slogan mimic's Shepard Fairey's famous work called "HOPE," which was designed in support of Obama's Presidential campaign.

We've not only put this artwork on billboards in Milwaukee and Northern Wisconsin, but we've sold hundreds of yard signs with the same art to voters throughout Wisconsin and abroad. 

After the Supreme Court ruled that Trump was above the law, I didn't sleep a wink that night. All I could think about was how we as a company and Super PAC could DO MORE to ensure that Trump was defeated in Wisconsin.

When I woke up, I hatched a plan.

We're gonna make a sparkling water using our NOPE logo and sell it throughout Wisconsin as a mini-billboard that ridicules the most unpresidential man in American history to ever seek that office.

Not only that, but we hope to put these billboards up in every "rural-ish" city where we currently sell our beer, so that the same people who see our new sparkling water in grocery/liquor stores will also see these signs. I say rural "ish" because we want our billboards to be seen by as many voters as possible, and there simply aren't that many voters in REALLY rural areas.

Why rural? Because our activism springs from rural Wisconsin and we understand these voters. We also believe that the Biden campaign and affiliated groups at the national level will focus on Dane County and Southeastern Wisconsin, and our activism will be most helpful if we stick to our rural roots.

Our new NOPE sparkling water and a bunch of new NOPE billboards in rural Wisconsin aren't all we've got up our sleeves. Raising awareness through the ridicule of Trump in rural Wisconsin is important, but what's more important is to sign up volunteers in rural Wisconsin that will help convince their progressive neighbors to VOTE in November. For this reason, we're planning a bunch of rallies in each of these cities from mid-September through mid-October that we're calling the "Antifa Octoberfist Tour"--a name that coincides with our soon-to-be released Festbier.

This beer label, which poses the question "Is it ok to punch a Nazi?" is the most provocative art we've ever created.

It talks about how we honor America's WWII veterans, or "anti-fascists," as heroes because they beat back Fascism in Nazi Germany, and how we must rise again, as "antifa" patriots, to raise a fist against Fascism within our own country.

I plan to take our new beer, and our new "NOPE" sparkling water, to musical rallies in all of the cities where we have NOPE billboards, so that we can sign up volunteers to help get the progressive vote out on November 5th.

This is where you come in.

In a few weeks, I'll make a call for musicians and local progressive politicians/candidates to help bring the "pep" to these rallies, but what I'm looking for right now are places to hold them. If you are an owner or manager of a music venue/bar/banquet hall/etc that would be willing to host an event in one of these listed cities, please email us at info@minocquabrewingcompany.com.

I'm also looking for an organizer or organizer(s)/event planner(s) that the Super PAC will pay to help put this all together. We're gonna need a lot of help to pull this off. If you are THAT person, please also email us at info@minocquabrewingcompany.com.

Last but not least, if you support our plan to use Alinksy's "Rules For Radicals" to ridicule Trump, as well as to host rallies throughout Wisconsin that will recruit volunteers to help get out the rural progressive vote, then please chip in to help make it happen. Here's a link to donate.

I know that this blog was a doozy, but I hope you read it all the way through.

I'll have more to write when we get more organized, but until then, thanks for reading and thanks for supporting the Minocqua Brewing Company. Together, we can beat back Fascism in Wisconsin and America, one "Fist" bier and sparkling water at a time.

Kirk Bangstad,
Owner, Minocqua Brewing Company
Founder, Minocqua Brewing Company Super PAC

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