Here's the Cliff Notes version of this diary as of 7:30 ET on Monday.
- Three quarters of those reading, commenting and voting think this is a good idea worth pursuing. That's my plan.
- A dozen or so people believe this idea is dangerous and should not be pursued. They think it (1) won't work, (2) will get people fired, (3) will be embarrassing, or (4) won't matter even if it does work. I've invited them to offer whatever other ideas they have.
- Twitter seems to be a critical piece of any formula for success. I am a Twitter newbie, so that angle will require someone else to lead.
- Mainstream media coverage will be critical. I talked to one reporter here in North Carolina last night. He said "Keep me posted if this gains traction on Kos." I am assuming that means someone besides me helping to carry this off.
What should happen on July 6th?
- If you can do it, don't go to work. Many people won't be able to do that and I encourage you not to do anything that might put your job at risk.
- Don't buy stuff. This is a fallback option for those who have to work, for those who are unemployed or retired. If you have to buy things, one commenter suggested buying local products from local businesses.
- Call your Congressman or Senator. They will not be working in Washington on Monday, July 6th. But they never take calls personally anyway. Monday is NOT a federal holiday (Friday is).
What to do between now and July 6th
One thing: Spread the word.
Use your email list and your diaries here (and on other blogs) to invite others to join. Here's a sample of what I've been sending.
I'm writing to ask you to help send a message to Congress and President Obama that Americans are serious about health care reform. Specifically, I am joining a national strike on Monday, July 6th.
What's involved? Three things. Don't go to work. Don't buy things. And call your Congressmen and Senators.
If you can't help, I understand, and I certainly don't want anyone to risk their jobs. But if you can, please do. You can find out more at Facebook. Or just call me.
PS Some people are actually asking their employers to close on July 6th in solidarity. Businesses need health care reform as much as people do. You might want to ask your employer too. Thanks.
I have been unnecessarily rude to a couple of people who didn't like this idea. For that I apologize. I was out of line.
Now back to the original diary.
Maybe you're like me. An average guy or a gal sitting somewhere in America doing all you can to help shape public policy and get good people elected. And maybe, like me, you're really worried right now about how things are going in the health care debate. And maybe, just maybe, you're ready to send a serious message to Congress that business as usual isn't going to cut it.
I've written more emails and made more phone calls than I'd ever imagined possible, and I'm not letting up. But my voice seems mostly to be falling on deaf ears. It seems we need to turn up the volume.
That's why I'm asking you to recommend this diary calling for a nationwide strike for health care reform on Monday, July 6th.
The idea is simple: Don't go to work and don't buy stuff. Stay home and spend the day contacting members of Congress. Show our fearful leaders what people power looks like in action.
Everybody has their own view of what reform looks like. That's cool. My preference is for a single-payer public plan for universal coverage.
Why July 6th?
July 6th is the Monday after July 4. It is not a federal holiday. (July 3 is the holiday.) To those who will say we need to wait and plan something later, I say the time is now. A good idea tomorrow is a better idea today.
Why not June 25th?
There is a rally in Washington being organized on June 25th at 10 am. If you can do that, please do. What I'm proposing is a strike, not a rally. The two can work hand in hand.
I've never called for a national strike before, but I know we can do this. The first step is easy. Just recommend this diary.