Sunday, December 18, 2005

An Alternative Path - Overview

An Alternative Path - Overview

Over the course of the next several months I hope to post a series of pieces that will offer an alternative pathway to public office for Green Party activists who live in the Monroe County area and across New York State.*

Green Party activists in the Monroe County area & around NYS have traditionally attempted to reach elected office via their work on a range of progressive issues followed by traditional electoral tactics. This series will offer a somewhat different approach: a life of public service to the general community as a natural pathway to public office & progress on the Ten Key Values. I won't be digging in too deeply around electoral tactics. That's not my point at all, in fact. My point is that if you lay a strong foundation, electoral activities & successes follow more naturally.

In each posting I will take a look at a different topic related to the overall theme. Since I have not yet composed the whole series I may or may not proceed logically from one point to the next. In fact, I may jump to one seemingly unrelated topic from the last. So, hang on! This might get a bit bumpy. Ideally, each post will stand on it's own.

I hope you will engage me in a dialog on each of the topics as we go along. Feel free to post your comments. With your help we will uncover even better ideas that will improve our chances for progress in our respective communities.

Some of the possible topics: (in no particular order & with working titles)

Background - A national/NYS situation analysis

Background - A local situation analysis

The focus is on you - Get used to it

Walk before you run - Beginning at the beginning

Same old, same old - Start talking to people you don't know

So, why are ya running? - To each their own

A view from the inside - Focusing on what's important

Make a contribution - Making real people's lives better

Engage Your Community - Listen & learn before you lead

Serving the general good and Issue activism - Understand your goals & what works

Public Service - A lifestyle choice

The Risks - Planning is critical

Coming out - Can you keep a secret? Should you?

Making Things Happen - The characteristics of leadership

Citizen vs. Customer - Roles & responsibilities

Think Strategically - Get organized. Get organized. Get organized.

Politics & Geography - You serve where you live

Preparation + Opportunity - Being in the right place at the right time

Running to win - Choice wisely

Working well with others (coalitions) - All for one & one for all!

* Yes, of course, the political landscape, personalities & individual circumstances vary widely as you move from from one area of NYS to the next. I understand Glen Cove and Cohocton are different from South Salem and Brooklyn Heights. NYC provides exceptions to every rule. Democrats dominate one area while Republicans dominate another. My background is different from yours. In the end, if this experiment is successful, we will have constructed an argument that cuts across most of the differences and provides activists with a model for ameliorating society's ills through public service.


Jason Nabewaniec said...

This sounds like a great discussion, maybe the final product could be put into book form. I'm interested in the discussion of coming out and the tactical reasons and approaches, particularly how my activism has been as a Green or representing the Greens (even in a non-partisan secretive role, it's still been as a Green).

I'd also like a discussion on building a team, alliances and coalitions and when to bring them into electoral activism.
-Jason Nabewaniec

Rome said...

Thanks for posting.

Each piece will have a distinct title so we can discuss individual ideas.

I will add coalition building to this series since it is VERY MUCH a part of the story. My focus is on individuals & small groups so it won't really touch on the larger role of coalition building.

Great ideas. Thanks!