Step Down, Step Down, Bush Must Go! Drive Out the Bush Regime!

World Can’t Wait National Conference Sets Plan for State of the Union Protests

Revolution #025, December 4, 2005, posted at

On November 2, as a historic movement to drive the Bush regime from power was launched, World Can’t Wait announced the next big step: the demand for Bush to step down and the call to politically drown out Bush’s State of the Union speech with powerful demonstrations around this demand.

On the weekend of November 19-20 in New York City, the World Can’t Wait movement held a successful national organizers conference, bringing together over 180 people from all over the country. The organizers grappled with the questions and challenges of leaping forward off of Nov. 2, mobilizing masses in an even bigger way in independent political actions that drown out Bush's State of the Union, and transforming the whole political dynamics that exists.

In the opening speech, Debra Sweet, national coordinator of World Can’t Wait, summed up what was accomplished on Nov. 2--and what still urgently needs to be done. And she laid out an "ambitious and audacious" plan proposed by the World Can't Wait steering committee for two-phase protests around the State of the Union, which will likely be in late January (see accompanying box for more on the plan):

1. On the night that Bush gives the State of the Union, people will mobilize around the country in diverse actions to politically drown out Bush’s words in a "cacophony of sound."

2. On the Saturday following the speech, people are called on to converge on Washington, DC to deliver the "people’s verdict" on the State of the Union with the demand: STEP DOWN, STEP DOWN, BUSH MUST GO! DRIVE OUT THE BUSH REGIME!

Debra Sweet said in her opening speech about this plan:

"That is a tall order but this is what we need. To say we made a beginning on November 2 cannot mean that now we settle into gradual and incremental tactics to slowly grow this movement. This is not the same old same old. This is not a pet project or a way to build a movement. It is a serious challenge to unseat and drive out of power a sitting regime and not just any old regime--but one that has to be driven out--because what will happen if we don’t?"

The State of the Union is traditionally a time when the administration in power outlines its political agenda for the coming year. In his 2003 State of the Union, Bush put out a deliberate lie--that Iraq's weapons of mass destruction posed an immediate danger. This lie was a major part of justifying the war that the Bush regime launched a few weeks later.

As this newspaper wrote after Nov. 2, "A powerful action, or actions, contending with that speech really could politically drown it out and set a different agenda--one focused on driving out this criminal regime as soon as possible. It could open up a whole different political vista for this society and the whole world."

(From "November 2: The Real Beginning and the Challenge We Face," at

An important part of the World Can't Wait national conference was a panel discussion where participants in the movement from divergent perspectives spoke to the following questions:

"1) From your perspective, why is it essential and urgent to drive out the Bush regime? What led to your decision to help lead this effort? What do you say in arguing to others that they should join us? 2) Drawing from historical or international examples, what lessons do you think we need to bring to bear in our effort to drive out this regime? What is your vision of what it will take, how it will look, when the Bush regime is forced out? 3) What is your vision of what the Bush regime will be replaced with?"

There were speeches at the panel discussion from Jim Oberg, of World Can't Wait, Portland, OR; Karen Bradley, Democracy Cell Project; Sunsara Taylor, Revolution newspaper; Pat, World Can't Wait student organizer from Connecticut. These speeches and other information from the conference are on the website, which continues to be a key organizing center for this movement, with constantly updated news, reports, statements, analysis, and organizing material.

The first step taken on Nov. 2 showed the real potential for this movement to realize a new leap in January. The Call to Drive Out the Bush Regime, which launched this movement and remains its foundation, gave a vision of what is urgently needed in these times:

"We are talking about something on a scale that can really make a huge change in this country and in the world. We need more than fighting Bush's outrages one at a time, constantly losing ground to the whole onslaught. We must, and can, aim to create a political situation where the Bush regime's program is repudiated, where Bush himself is driven from office, and where the whole direction he has been taking society is reversed. We, in our millions, must and can take responsibility to change the course of history."

The World Can't Wait Plan for Protests vs Bush's State of the Union

In the opening speech to the national organizers conference of World Can't Wait, national coordinator Debra Sweet presented a two-phase plan for political actions around Bush's January State of the Union speech:

1. On the night of the State of the Union message, in real time across the country, everyone mobilizes in their own area to Drown Our Bush’s Lies. At rallies called one hour before the speech (starting at 8 pm EST, 5 pm PST, and so on) we will proclaim our determination to Drive out the Bush Regime. The whole diversity of our movement, from high school students who have spent the day mobilizing, to local government officials who bring resolutions calling for Bush to Step Down, to prominent artists and activists, unions, professional associations, student governments will represent. As Bush begins to speak, literally, we will BRING THE NOISE in a cacophony of sound that drowns out his speech. From drum circles to violins, cat-calls to air horns to banging pots and pans-the whole variety of musical expression from hip hop to classical will make a noise. Big media outlets like Fox News might make good gathering spots for public DROWN OUTS. People in nursing homes and hospitals, or at work on late shifts, could participate where they are. The students, especially the high schools, can help by not even going to school that day, but by criss crossing the cities and towns in car caravans and flat bed trucks, and marches.

This part of the plan utilizes the strength we have in the youth and the fact that people want to demonstrate wherever they are that they demand BUSH STEP DOWN, and Take your whole program with you!

2.Then, the very next Saturday, we will get everyone possible to Washington DC by bus, car, train or plane to protest at the seat of government. There will be prominent voices of conscience to help deliver the peoples’ verdict on the State of the Union. And that verdict will ring through the streets of DC, and echo through the world: STEP DOWN STEP DOWN, BUSH MUST GO! DRIVE OUT THE BUSH REGIME!

State of the Union Emergency

Bring the Noise--Drown Out Bush’s Lies--Drive Out the Bush Regime

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