Sat Apr 1st, 2023 at 08:05:37 PM EST
I read The Persuaders: At the Front Lines of the Fight for Hearts, Minds, and Democracy by Anand Giridharadas (NY: Alfred A Knopf, 2022 ISBN 9780593318997) recently. It has a lot of good examples of effective organization and communication from grassroots lower case "p" progressives.
One of the ones I found most sympatico is Anat Shenker-Osorio:
Voters aren't stirred to reduce harm, Shenker-Osorio said. They're motivated to create good.
...Paint the beautiful tomorrow
...The entire premise of my work is, 'Say what you're for.' The rest is commentary...
What you fight you feed...
To sum up the [Anat] Shenker-Osorio method thus far: Don't dilute the vision to reach out to a middle that isn't in the middle but is confused. Thrill your base; alienate the people who aren't going to vote for you anyway but will do you the favor, if you're setting the rhetorical agenda, of yelling your ideas all over town. Don't be afraid to call out, to woo the right people and drive away the right people. And there was more. These callouts, she argued, needed to be nested within a positive galvanizing mission that her allies on the left too often forget to include while deploring problems.
"I genuinely believe," she continued, "it is a Republican wet dream that they have us talking constantly about everything that we oppose because (a) it gives them more airtime, (b) it scares the shit out of people, and when people are afraid, what they seek is a more authoritarian, more restrictive, more conservative kind of leadership and structure, (c) it has us not speak about what we're for." She joked with colleagues that despite all her research into the nuances of different messages, there was really just one winning message for her side. "That message is, `We can have nice things.'"
My full notes on The Persuaders are at http://hubeventsnotes.blogspot.com/2023/03/notes-on-persuaders.html
More notes on persuasion and influence from the work of Robert Cialdini:
Influence: Science and Practice
Pre-Suasion: A Revolutionary Way to Influence and Persuade
Yes! 50 Scientifically Proven Ways to Be Persuasive