Monday, October 18, 2010

Campaigning for a New Way

If I had to make my living by phone banking every day, I'd call it quits.

If my livelihood depended upon me blockwalking on a regular basis, I'd take steps to make a change.

Oh ... wait a minute ... I did.

Life on the campaign trail is difficult. The work is never done. More lists are always popping up -- calls to make, doors to knock on, funds to raise, mailers to design with just the right message that help folks know a candidate ... in three paragraphs or less.

After one season, I knew the grueling pace would never be a race I could master. While my current studies keep me busy, I have found a degree of balance between fun and facts, between what I want to do and what I have to do. In the last two weeks, I've attended a few campaign events (because I wanted to, not because I had to) and standing at a distance I've had my decision confirmed.

I wonder if the public would agree that a new way is viable, that they would be willing to be educated on choices without calls, mailers, and a knock on the door on a Saturday morning. While I hear plenty of complaints about the process, the gurus bring out stats each time a naysayer suggests cutting back on campaign communications that dispel the idea that those complaints have any merit. They easily convince the campaign planners that disconnecting from phone banks or closing the door on blockwalking would shut down a successful campaign.

And what do I know? Maybe they're right.

But as for me and my ears, feet, and heart . . . we'll be going in new directions.

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