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View Diary: Walter Cronkite's Letter to the NYT: An Idea for Dems (281 comments)

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  •  Let's build the Party platform via blogging! (4.00)
    Let's build the platform online. Why the hell not. Democracy in action.
    Here, let's get started:

    To address potential conflicts of interest-

    All federally elected officials will upon assuming office divest their personal assets from all publically traded companies and put them into an interest bearing independent federal treasury account coincidentally called "The Public Trust".

    Don't need any sniper comments about why it can't or won't work or how naive this may or may not be.  Cronkite wants a convention and he's right! Hey Dr. Dean, give us a convention!
    Dream big! We can whittle and hone later- Build our platform now!

    •  I loved this idea! (none)
      All federally elected officials will upon assuming office divest their personal assets from all publically traded companies and put them into an interest bearing independent federal treasury account coincidentally called "The Public Trust".

      No sniping whatsoever... Maybe there's a way to extrapolate that into something truly sellable.

      And smartinez, was it naivete that got the framers to draft the bill of rights? Good for you!

      "I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed." MLK

      by Moesse on Fri Oct 14, 2005 at 06:12:39 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  use blogging, teleconference,... (4.00)

      ...and all the rest of the fruits of technology, to extend the whole thing far beyond the physical convention.

      Blogs and chats, online forums of various kinds, and every day, large telephone conference calls with voters in every region to hear their concerns.  

      There could also be continuous ongoing dial-up teleconferences on various topics, with moderation by conference delegates in various localities.  Get home from work, dial in, and talk.  This could also use VOIP to reduce the costs of participation.  My company designs this stuff for private clients, believe me it is easier than it may sound.   Hearing other peoples' voices, regional accents included, adds a dimension to the interchange that is often missing from online text communications; makes it more personal.  

      This midterm convention shouldn't be limited to people who can travel to a distant city.  It should bring in people where they live and where they work, wherever in the United States that happens to be.  

      We have the technology to do that, right now.  This is an opportunity that shouldn't be missed.  

      •  Diary Posted Yesterday (none)
        (My diary) don't know how to link but I'm trying

        Is this sort of what you are talking about?  If yes, please review the rules part.  

        Any facilitators out there?  I facilitated meetings at my job prior to retirement, but I'm way too rusty.  A good facilitator, who does not have an agenda or who if she/he does, has the ability to set the personal agenda aside, can really pull things together and it can be fun.  Divisiveness, which is going to happen, is accepted as a natural byproduct, but is held to a bare minimum.  

        •  interesting ideas... (none)

          I'll read that diary shortly; seems it didn't get a lot of comments but that's an endemic problem when 50,000 people are using a system with limited time-bandwidth for diaries.

          I know well about facilitation; having studied & practiced it since college (>20 years ago).  

          Teleconfs would need facilitators, yes; and discussions should be focused, yes.  

          All of this could be handled on a local level, or via a two-layer hierarchy:  local voters on local teleconf with local facilitator; and then, local facilitators report back to the national level.  

          Or better yet (though this would take a more complex phone system, I know how to do that), set things up so you get people from different regions talking to each other.  Same general pattern; a facilitator who reports back to the national level.

          Re. blogs: one way to cut through the noise would be via ruthless moderation, i.e. ask a specific question, take only posts that offer an answer to that question, and edit out anything that's offtopic, snarky, or uses nastywords.  Simple polls don't cut it since nuance is left out.  For example:  Issue Q, proposal R, yes or no?, does not leave open the possibility for proposal S or T.  

          Anyway, whatever else happens, someone ought to be working to organize this midterm convention.  It's a brilliant idea, it will generate enormous energy and bring out voters in November 06.  

          And November 06 is the next-to-last chance to save the Republic.  

          •  Comparing this to the "old conventions" (none)
            For all us baby boomers - I was born 1947 - the old conventions offered real excitement.  It was reality TV of the time.  You really didn't know ahead of time.  There was a lot of hustling on the floor, late nights, etc.  Those days are gone!

            But what is being discussed here brings in that tone of excitement of those days.

            I'm thinking there are people who need other people around them to get going and come up with ideas.  Then there are those who prefer to blog and email, etc.  Then there's the teleconference you spoke of and they can be exciting. (I was in one with Al Gore briefly in my previous job - what a nice guy!).  Why not use all kinds?  whatever it takes to get the needed input ... and excitement.  

    •  I was thinking the very same thing (none)
      Let's have an online convention.

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