Lately I've been exploring what might be ways to stage and run aggressively low-budget campaigns not only where I live but nationwide and I think I have something.
It starts with the truth, everyone
enjoys eating. And most of us like potluck suppers. Well, why not use
that as a way to not only energize but expand the base? That is, draw
in(or draw back) progressively more people who are and/or have been
disenchanted with the whole business? Considering how deplorably, yea
abysmally, low the turnout is for even presidential, let alone midterm,
elections I say we want to aim our pitches at drawing back the
disenchanted rather than catering to the biped Morrises called
'independents'. There are PLENTY more disenchanteds than 'independents'!
So, make sure to have plenty of registration forms at the potlucks,
which should be held at free or low-cost venues such as churches or
synagogues or, maybe, fire halls and the like. Ask for small ($5-10)
contributions from those who don't bring anything, but ASK. Let's try
not to compel if we can get away with it.
And KEEP HAVING THEM
across the district, borough or whatever the election unit might be. Ask
for volunteers to help with them. Maybe volunteer to help organize
And as the weather warms, they can become potluck
picnics--but, again, ask for food contributions, be they snacks,
grillable meats, salads or whatever from those who'll come. We want to
encourage a feeling of everyone doing what they can--of a wide number of
contributors. Which, in turn, can work AGAINST the numbing feeling
which the Repiglicans have been spreading: the feeling that YOUR vote
doesn't matter and there's nothing you can do. We MUST make the point to
a widening number of in-kind contributors that YES, what they do,
whether they vote and for whom DOES make a difference for not only them
but for all of us, for the whole country!
And we need to keep
repeating it, which might be the toughest thing of all for some of us. I
know repetition can bore ME pretty quickly but we need to keep at it in
order to 1) show ourselves and our base that, at least from the
congressional level on down, we CAN nullify big money's influence and
yet win and 2) to have our points sink in for a widening base!
potlucks and picnics should end with a question/answer session between
the candidate(s) and the audience, and maybe with an appropriate song or
two. I write songs; all anyone need do is ask and I'll share. Another point about potlucks and picnics: attendees could be asked if
they're registered to vote. If not, then they can be directed to a table
where the registration forms will be. Even if they refuse to register,
still make them welcome.
One thing about which I'm not too sure is
to have 'C' and 'S' stamps for the attendees' hands. 'C' would indicate
'citizen', meaning someone civically engaged to varying degrees. The
opt-outers would be stamped with 'S', indicating 'subject'.
Actually, I'm not sure potlucks or picnics as so far imagined are the
right place for that as it might get more of a discussion going which
might obscure the question/answer time with the candidates. However, why
not also have potlucks where such a discussion would be at least part
of the after-meal agenda?
Such a thing could also provide some raw
data as to what needs to be done in which communities in order to
variously build, rebuild, maintain and/or strengthen what can be called
the civic sense--that is, the feeling of both freedom and responsibility
that comes with 'citizen consciousness'. I hope I'm making myself
understood here, so weigh in, y'all.
go, people. Let's WIN this election with the first wave of a
progressive tsunami and tell the anti-democracy billionaire crowd where
they can stick it!!!