Online Activism

How to make a difference on-line.

We are seeing lots of economic talk battles on you-tube, yahoo, and similar places.  It is easy to dismiss these and not having an impact, but I have a different perspective on this.  I draw hope from the following quote:

Man's mind, once stretched by a new idea, never regains its original dimensions.
                                                                  - Oliver Wendell Holmes

If we make posts like "this senator did things that are mean", then even if you make your point, you run the risk of it being lost behind the next outrage and you don't make a lasting difference.  But if you expose a long-term trend, then no matter how many outrages are uncovered the long term trend is still there waiting when the outrage is done.

For that reason I have collected some graphs which do a good job of displaying the long term trend and I use these frequently on these websites.  To keep them organized, set up a account and save all your useful links there (or another similar service).  Here are some of the links that I keep.  None of them are mine originally, but they all might be useful in some circumstances: - Debts were caused by Trickle down economics. - Growth was dramatic 1933-1942 - Reagan, Bush I, and Bush II combined for approximately 0 combined per capita growth - People stopped being paid for efficiency between 1970 and 1985.  In other words, See’s law broke down completely. - The inequality gaps can come down very quickly as you saw after 1929.  Let’s hope they come down with less pain this time. - Maybe we should have listened to Ross Perot and his “Great Sucking Sound” more carefully. - We are the worst jailor in the world, past even Russia. - Laffer is Bogus - Global Warming's effect on number of natural disasters in the US - China is not pursuing neoliberalism - Neoliberalism so bad in Mexico even the NY Times is willing to report it. - More on Mexico: "These results are the product of the imposition of "neoliberal" economic reforms... as the International Monetary Fund and World Bank used the leverage of foreign debt to require massive changes in economic priorities" - Great Global Warming Site - Income Inequality - Income Inequality Infographic - US prison Incarceration over time (up 5x since Reagan!) - Union Membership in the US over time. - Ratio of CEO pay to lowest paid worker pay over time.

Bitly lets you track both the total number of clicks for the target link and the number of clicks against the current shortcut.  When the total number of clicks for some of these links start to reach the tens of thousands, then we will have made an impact in the elections and the US consciousness.

Remember if you reply to someone online, always be polite and courteous and meet rudeness with firm, but respectful disagreement that points to facts.  Even if you don't convince the person, the facts you bring can help a casual reader than neither of you see to see the light.  And with Graphs like the ones below: - zFacts Debt chart from 1930 - 2010 - US prison Incarceration 1920 - 2006

It shouldn't be to hard to change the way an independent looks at things.

I am attaching a word doc with arguments for the mean time.  It is confusing and not well organized because it is just responses to individual posts, but might be useful before we put together a more definitive reference.

Jeff Little,
May 20, 2012, 11:23 PM