Let’s be clear about this.
Electoral politics has become a cage fight.
There’s no room for timidity, hesitation, equivocation, weakness, disunity. The forces which now monopolize the power in our political environment are extremely well-funded, highly organized, staffed with brilliant (if misguided) people, ruthless, cunning, relentless, ambitious, avaricious, and take no prisoners. They couldn’t care less about fairness, equality, constitutional rights. This is a direct assault on the core principles of our democracy.
The CFAR strategy is intended to break that hammerlock on our compromised — almost entirely crippled — legislative machinery, so that the majority of everyday citizens can again assume control, have a voice in government, and start repairing the damage.
The challenge comes down to this: The neoliberal/neocon/corporate establishment has vast resources. It owns the media, funds a huge network of think tanks and sold-out academics, pushes an almost identical agenda with both major parties, therefore frames the national conversation, controls the narrative, and can mount a colossal wall of disinformation, propaganda, and often outright lies, to confuse the public and pull it into a house of mirrors from which there is no escape. It distracts and disorients voters, so they literally don’t know which way to turn, if they even have a choice, on election day.
The only way to counter this is with THE TRUTH. In an electoral contest, that means telling THE TRUTH about where candidates really stand on the issues.
We already know where the populist-progressive stands. It’s right there in black-and-white, signed, sealed and delivered in the legally-binding Contract For American Renewal.
The real focus then is making it clear where his or her opponents really stand on the critical initiatives in the CFAR.
That means calling them out on their vaporous slogans, their empty campaign promises, the slippery language of their campaign literature, the soothing, hypnotic imagery of their high-dollar TV ads.
We won’t have the money but we can make a lot of noise. People power!
We won’t have the media at our disposal but we can make news they can’t ignore. Street theater! Protests!
The CFAR provides an anchor for this truth-telling. A well-researched, focused CFAR customized for a particular district will target maybe five or six PIVOTAL ISSUES. These are initiatives which the voters in the district strongly support, but which an incumbent has a blemished voting record on, or an opponent likes to make pleasant-sounding but vague allusions to but fails to give an ironclad commitment.
It comes down to this: The opponents will not — cannot — sign the CFAR. That draws a clear line in the sand, giving voters a clear choice.
One of the most important things activists can do to support a candidate is show up at every public appearance, every photo op, every press conference, every rally for the non-CFAR opponent, and let loose with both barrels blazing:
Why won’t the you sign the contract to raise the minimum wage?
Can’t your rich friends pay us a living wage?
Why won’t you sign the contract for free college tuition?
Are you against education?
Why won’t you sign the contract to bring the troops home from
Afghanistan? No more coming home in body bags!
Why won’t you sign the contract ending Citizens United?
Whose side you on? Money destroys democracy!
Is this negative campaigning? Hardly. Getting the truth out there so people can make an intelligent, informed choice at the polls is about as positive as it gets on the campaign trail. It’s the most basic, essential building block for a functioning democracy.
So please understand . . .
The lack of accountability, giving a pass on half-truths and pseudo-truths, and often pure lies, is destroying our democracy and rendering everyday citizens powerless.
The public deserves to know! It’s their right to know! The truth will set them free!
Populist-progressive candidates, let the voters know that you’re on their side by signing the CFAR.
Voters, don’t throw your vote away. Only vote for CFAR candidates!
Activists, get out and spread the word! Give your all to CFAR candidates!