Saturday, March 10, 2007

Toll & ID Schemes Unravel - Lies, Deceit and Betrayal - Part 4

Photos used by permission of Sal Costello, David Stall, Pam Thompson, Tatum Evers, Tom Blackwell and Marilyn Short.

Part 4 of this series is intended to be a primer for keeping the fire turned up under elected officials and for keeping the light shining on dirty, underhanded deeds. This journal is about resistence that is occurring in Texas. However, it chronicles a small segment of current day American Society. From New York to Pennsylvania to Chicago and Indiana and Colorado the same forces are operating contrary to the public good. The same lies are being told. The same tactics are being use.

There are effective ways to combat fat cats with deep pockets who are lickin' their greasy chops in anticipation of big payoffs at the expense of ordinary citizens, business men and women, farmers, ranchers, truckers and children. The battle isn't won yet in Texas but recently there have been some squirmishes which have left the fat cats ducking for cover and compliant politicans yelling about repentance and know understanding what they were doing!

RULE No. 1: My enemies enemy is my friend.
Forget about partisan differences and identify neighbors and leaders of other parties who share your distain for private/public partnerships for toll roads, secret negotiations by politicians and bureaucracies, and legislation which benefits a few at the expense of many.

RULE No. 2: Forge coalitions across party lines to encircle the wagons and get the attention of politicians.
Don't hesitate to invite people who agree with you on this (these issues) but usually oppose your position on other issues to go with you to the State Capitol to hearings and to speak with legislators. When citizens from all parties show up and say the same things, some legislators are smart enough to realize that discontent is mounting which may be large enough to unseat them when they face re-election. Even the worse transgressors, when frightened enough, tend to try to start distancing themselves from some of their bills and votes.

RULE No. 3: Don't hesitate to allow Legislators whose performance riles you the most to come on board and do right on this particular issue. You don't have to like them. You need not vote for them. You need not trust them. Let them step across the line and VOTE RIGHT on this issue. Votes count even from scroundrels.

RULE 4: Don't rely on the main stream media to get the word out. Use them when you can but develop other communication tools.

RULE 5: Share, share, share.
Share contacts, forward pertinent e-mail messages, introduce people who share common interests even if they disagree on many other things.

RULE 6: Teach, mentor, and enable.
Everyone doesn't have the same education, skills, or resources. Everyone has something to contribute. Assist, encourage, share, utilize.

RULE 7: Thank people. Thanks is fuel for the battle.
When an elected official makes a correct stand, whether in an interview, at a hearing, or by sponsoring or co-sponsoring or voting on legislation, call, write or e-mail and thank him or her. When a reporter gives fair coverage to the issue, send a thank-you stating your appreciation of the coverage. When you see others leading the charge and contributing to the effort, pat them on the back and tell others what a good job they have done for the cause.

RULE 8: Research, research, research -- verify, verify, verify -- communicate, communicate, communicate.
Email and internet allows us to link our home offices together into a virtual network. Don't hesitate to shout when you need help, are confused, or are overwhelmed. This is a relay race. One carries the torch for a leg or two while other recharge and prepare to step in for the next leg of the journey. The enemy is large with deep pockets and highly motivated by greed. Alone we are defeated. Together we are an army attracting new recruits with fresh resources and skill sets. It isn't about any one person's ego or position. It is about the welfare of humankind. We are each one voice in a mighty chorus.

Below is an Action Alert for NAIS. Tomorrow a similar Action Alert will be posted for Toll Roads. Use this as an example. Even if you are in another State, it shows you how to keep the heat turned up to change the positions of elected officials on oppressive legislation. Most of the content of this Action Alert was written by Judith McGeary of the Farm and Ranch Freedom Alliance.

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