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View Diary: The banana republic in which we stand (196 comments)

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  •  Stop trying to influence elections (12+ / 0-)

    with our checkbooks, start trying to mobilize people through the things we have more of--our time, our passion, our ability to connect with people personally.  Person-to-person contact is more powerful than ads.  And if the structures are created to both put people in office that way--permanent structures that rely on people power not money power--they can also be used to track and monitor what officials do when in office.  When this happens, it will be possible for officials to chose not to seek big money if they don't want to. Now, even the most well intentioned member of Congress has no choice. The other thing this approach can be used to do is to democratize the states, including removing voting barriers and public funding. This is an important first step, as doing this is easier than democratizing at the national level.

    All of this requires rejecting the idea that the parties and the media get to determine the agenda: what we seek, and the terms of the debate. It also means rejecting the notion that politicians are our allies and that their fate should be our first concern.  They will respect us only when they fear and loath us.

    Politics is the art of the possible, but that means you have to think about changing what is possible, not that you have to accept it in perpetuity. Notes on a Theory

    by David Kaib on Sun Apr 07, 2013 at 07:03:50 AM PDT

    [ Parent ]

    •  Yep. There is no way we "little people," often (11+ / 0-)

      already struggling, can compete with the deep pockets opposed—even with our few deep pocket allies.

      I've also noted another phenomenon. All this "sign the petition" stuff, including from this site, is just flooding my mailbox with "donate, donate, donate, just three (or 5, 10, 100) dollars" because some TP/GOP idiot said something or some whack job might be a candidate somewhere a thousand miles from me. As a result I've shut down, unsubscribed, made scripts to send them the same place

      This is to inform you that this AUTHORITY has precedence over your WINNING Fund and as such is totally in control of all winners seeking  for immediate settlement in various Security Companies and Trust Clearing . . .
      this goes.

      Costs and helping my adult kids who aren't as secure as I was limits me to very judicious use of my pockets and that is limited exclusively to my local elections. Sorry, I can't help you in Deep Redland no matter how I feel for you and us suffering from idiots sent from those villages to pollute my Beltway area.

      Nope! I gotta depend on you in the precincts out there to kill these critters' political lives in the crib and to snuff out the larvae in the state house and the adult forms in Congress—by your vote.

      And there lies the problem and solution. No amount of deep pocket, devious, corrupting cash can buy anyone's vote unless they are asleep, village idiots themselves or just don't get involved. That cash "buys" sound bites and glittery door hangers and little rallies that the gullible fish bite on hard. That is the problem. The solution? Each of us has to do, within ourselves, families and limited circle of contacts, what we can to nullify those glittery baits funded by true enemies of our republic, those that seek to become the oligarchy of a big and powerful banana republic.

      Then, and only then, when an alert and dedicated citizenry votes out the subversive agents of those deep pocketed bait trollers can we begin taking back America for ordinary people of good will.

      The only foes that threaten America are the enemies at home, and those are ignorance, superstition, and incompetence. [Elbert Hubbard]

      by pelagicray on Sun Apr 07, 2013 at 07:22:09 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  This! Thank you for noting that that parties (5+ / 0-)

      Are in it up to their necks.  The parties are one enforcement mechanism to encourage/require congress critters to spend so much of their time fund raising.  Congressional chairmen are required to raise even more $$ than backbenchers., to flow not only into their own campaign coffers, but into the party coffers to be distributed to the reelection campaigns of other good little fund raisers.

      We can help break this cycle.  Do you know who is on your county party board?  It's usually a small group of people who keep the county level parties running.  It's often pretty easy to join/replace them.  Get local help, and take over your county party.  That puts you in position to have some influence on who your local and state candidates are, and to recruit people to knock on doors to help you get those folks elected on a platform of getting the money out.  And your door knockers don't ask for donations, the ask for a few hours of time.

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