Without online technologies, Barack Obama would never have gotten past the primaries. Had Facebook, YouTube, texting, a 13-million name email list and a website developed by Facebook co-founder Chris Hughes been absent from his campaign, he would never have raised enough money, been seen and heard by enough people, or enlisted enough volunteers. Yet progressive hopes are faltering, not only because of Obama’s compromises and mistakes and Republican intransigence, but also because far too many of his supporters have come to believe they can act exclusively through these online technologies, to the exclusion of face-to-face politics.
Tag: political activism
Jun 18 2010
Effective activism’s a long-haul process, not “save the Earth in 30 days, ask me how.” But there are some principles that seem to reoccur for people addressing every kind of challenge from the Gulf Oil spill to inadequate funding for urban schools to how to deal with Afghanistan and Iraq. They give us clues on how to reach out to engage our fellow citizens and help us get past our own barriers, not to mention burnout and disappointment. When I was updating my Soul of a Citizen book on citizen activism, an activist rabbi who was teaching the book at a Florida university suggested I gather together a Ten Commandments for effective citizen engagement. Calling them Commandments seemed presumptuous, but I did draw together ten suggestions that can make engagement more fruitful. Some I’ve already explored in various Soul of a Citizen excerpts. I’ll flesh out others in coming weeks. But pulling them together in one place seemed useful.
Mar 18 2010
The Founding Fathers gave us democracy. We have the moral responsibility to restore what was given to us, to take back what has been taken away by corrupt politicians of both major parties. There is no longer any doubt that the two-party system has been used to Establish, Maintain, and Expand corporate Tyranny. It has been used to divide and conquer, to prevent We the People from uniting in defense of our rights as citizens.
The false paradigm of We the Left against We the Right must be rejected. Americans must embrace a new ideology of Citizen Empowerment, they must speak a new language of Political, Social, and Economic Activism, they most forge a new movement, a local, state, and nationwide alliance encompassing the values and goals they share in common. They must cast aside the dead language of We the Left and We the Right, for among the victims of corporate Tyranny, there is no We the Left nor We the Right anymore, there is only We the Powerless.