We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
First off, Wendy and I would like to offer our sincere thanks for the positive comments the original ProCon post received. You can certainly sense that people are itching for a change.
These ProCon posts will be a small series until the election. Future posts will deal with various aspects and related articles, but today I wanted to cover some of the points raised in the comments. There being 27,000 words on the site, most of the raised issues were covered there, but rather than just tossing out links to answer the commenters, I thought I'd expound on them here. Rather than quote anyone, I'll just generalize.
1. "There isn't enough time between now and November to be effective."
That's just plain ol' wrong. Anyone who believes that has no idea how truly flaky American voters are and how many of them still don't know for sure who they're voting for when they wake up on Election Day. That flyer you hand them at the grocery store that morning might make all the difference.
Yes, it's embarrassing to admit the average American voter is so fickle, often picking a candidate for the flimsiest of reasons, but that matters not. We don't care any more about 'embarrassing' than the fact that it's 'tacky' to go after people's wallets, rather than intelligently discussing the issues as we did during the last two elections. And I needn't remind you what happened using that respectful little tactic.
This is war, and convention be damned.
2. "Web sites don't do any good."
No argument there. The 'home base' we want you to set up isn't for blogging and collecting readers and, in fact, the subject is never raised. You certainly can blog on it if you want, but it's two main functions are to act as a backdrop for the inspiring, hopefully-vote-changing 'motivational' posts and as a base of operations for your own endeavors, be it organizing a neighborhood Tea Party or collecting carpool riders for a Tea Party in the big city. It also gives you a sense of involvement and is demonstrative proof that you're actually doing something — as referred to fawning over your fave blogger's latest words.
3. "Blog sites don't convince anybody."
Again, no argument. I've always maintained that people are rarely "convinced" of anything. But they can certainly be persuaded.
And the difference? Perspective. If I'm sitting here telling you that something is a dire threat, spouting facts and figures, you know I'm trying to convince you of something.
But when you go to a web site and everywhere you turn there's one post after another hollering about what a mess the government is making of the country, and no one's using words like "liberal" and "conservative", "Dem" and "Rep", nor do you have the feeling they're speaking directly to you — more like you're 'eavesdropping' — that's when, with the pressure off, you start to persuade yourself.
That's what an official ProCon site is — unless someone actually wants to blog on it — a site full of pure non-ideological rants everywhere one turns. If you can get some fence-sitter there in the first place, and he or she starts looking around for clues like "dirty liberals" or "our conservative views" and finds nothing but the aforementioned raves and rants, first they'll be confused, but then eventually...
"Oh, I get it. This guy's not a lefty or a righty, he's... he's an American."
We just set the stage. They persuade themselves.
Those were the three main points that were noted in the many interesting comments. In discussing ways to spread the ProCon word, I believe it was my good buddy Cap'n Tom who, in pointing out the advantages of social networking, exclaimed "I follow Lady Gaga's tweets wherever she goes!" Or something like that. I think he wanted me to date her for a while and then have her tweet her Facebook friends about ProCon, but it was all kind of confusing. Tom's a boat captain, you see, and all those years of bobbing up and down eventually take their toll on the brain casing.
Now that we've got the 'recap' stuff out of the way, future ProCon posts should be quite interesting. We'll be keeping a little log of "who gets it" and who doesn't. Somebody who really gets it is South Carolina senator Jim DeMint, who bucked the establishment and, like Palin, came out in support of Tea Party favorite Christine O'Donnell in Delaware. Article here. Big kudos, Senator Jim.