[Politics]

Mon, Feb. 13th, 2017 09:38 pm
oyceter: teruterubouzu default icon (Default)
[personal profile] oyceter
I feel like I basically got nothing done in January because I was sick through most of it--one of those awful colds where you just keep coughing and coughing and not getting any rest because you're coughing so much. Thankfully, it's now gone.

Questions re: calling your members of Congress: Does it matter if you call during business hours, or is voicemail left after hours okay? And if they've already made a statement on something, is there a point to calling about that issue?

I have also started doing stuff for one of my local Indivisible groups \o/! I still need to look into more cybersecurity stuff as well. And I am doing that thing where I am reading way too much news. Some of it is necessary for volunteer work, and some of it is useful for work, but I really do not need to be refreshing five sites all the time, along with my personal social media accounts. I tried setting up something like Flipboard or another aggregator, but it feels a bit disorienting. I like being on the news provider's website and getting a better sense of their style and what they report on and etc. I suppose once I've figured it out for many sites, the aggregator will make more sense.

(no subject)

Tue, Feb. 14th, 2017 03:14 pm (UTC)
the_rck: (Default)
Posted by [personal profile] the_rck
My impression is that calling after a politician has made a statement can still have an impact and that that's true whether one is objecting to the content or supporting it. Constituent support stiffens spines. Constituent disagreement scares most representatives.

(no subject)

Tue, Feb. 14th, 2017 05:14 pm (UTC)
larryhammer: a low-fidelity picture of a man, label: some guy (Default)
Posted by [personal profile] larryhammer
This. (The Indivisible Guide even highlights this.) It may not affect the current stance, but can influence the next one. And this is a long game we're in -- a very long game.

As for time, that depends on whether you're trying to reach a staffer or just leave a message. If the latter, time does not seem to matter. Staff touches can (potentially) have a higher impact, especially if you're trying to gather info about the MoC's position, but are definitely more effort.
Edited (caveat) Tue, Feb. 14th, 2017 05:19 pm (UTC)

(no subject)

Wed, Feb. 15th, 2017 03:03 pm (UTC)
larryhammer: a low-fidelity picture of a man, label: some guy (Default)
Posted by [personal profile] larryhammer
I do most of my calls during lunch, in the stairwell. Not ideal, but my best option ATM.

(no subject)

Tue, Feb. 14th, 2017 04:06 pm (UTC)
laurashapiro: a woman sits at a kitchen table reading a book, cup of tea in hand. Table has a sliced apple and teapot. A cat looks on. (Default)
Posted by [personal profile] laurashapiro
Thank you so much for working with us! We really value your efforts. <3

Sorry to hear you've been so sick. That sounds terrible.

I need to limit my Twitter intake. It's too easy to go down the rabbit hole.

(no subject)

Wed, Feb. 15th, 2017 03:26 pm (UTC)
laurashapiro: a woman sits at a kitchen table reading a book, cup of tea in hand. Table has a sliced apple and teapot. A cat looks on. (Default)
Posted by [personal profile] laurashapiro
IKR? It's constant! Maybe things will slow down after the first 100 days?

(no subject)

Tue, Feb. 14th, 2017 05:17 pm (UTC)
larryhammer: a low-fidelity picture of a man, label: some guy (Default)
Posted by [personal profile] larryhammer
Janni is hip-deep in our local Indivisible group, and has even (v. briefly) appeared on local TV news coverage of events.

(In order to spread what bandwidth we have, I'm working on the climate change angle instead.)

(no subject)

Wed, Feb. 15th, 2017 03:02 pm (UTC)
larryhammer: a low-fidelity picture of a man, label: some guy (Default)
Posted by [personal profile] larryhammer
De nada.

I have to focus my efforts on just two or three key issues -- I just don't have the resources to do more (*glances at preschooler*) -- and that was one that was getting lost amid other (also important) hooplahs. They have good training resources for budding lobbiests, as it turns out.

(no subject)

Tue, Feb. 14th, 2017 07:05 pm (UTC)
gwyneira: This is a picture of my great-grandmother Margaret. (Default)
Posted by [personal profile] gwyneira
I tend to email instead of calling about issues my MoCs have already made a statement on (especially if I support their side, which I usually do). This is partly because I have so much phone anxiety that I have to save up my phone spoons, but it's also because it's easier for the staffers to tabulate email responses. I do think it's important to show support, though.

(no subject)

Wed, Feb. 15th, 2017 05:55 pm (UTC)
gwyneira: This is a picture of my great-grandmother Margaret. (Default)
Posted by [personal profile] gwyneira
I always use a script, but even then I sometimes lose track of what I'm saying! It did get easier after the first couple of times I talked to an actual person, but making phone calls is never going to be my most favoritest thing to do.

Someone on one of my FB political groups posted this, which I find super helpful:

"Friends! As some of you know, I used to work on Capitol Hill as the person in charge of all the incoming phone calls to my Senator's office. I have some insider tips to make calling your reps easier and quicker.

1. Give your name, city, and zip code, and say "I don't need a response." That way, they can quickly confirm you are a constituent, and that they can tally you down without taking the time to input you into a response database.

2. PLEASE ONLY CALL YOUR OWN REPRESENTATIVES! Your tally will not be marked down unless you can rattle off a city and zip from the state, or are calling from an in-state area code. I know you really want to give other reps a piece of your mind, but your call will be ignored unless you can provide a zip from their district. And don't try to make this up; I could often tell who was lying very quickly thanks to the knowledge of the state's geography. Exceptions to this are things like Paul Ryan's ACA poll which are national.

3. State the issue, state your position. "I am opposed to ________." "I am in favor of _______." "I am opposed to banning the import of phalanges." I am in favor of a trade deal to lower the price of juice smoothies." That's it. That's all we write down so we can get a tally of who is in favor, who is against. It doesn't matter WHY you hold that opinion. The more people calling, the less detail they have time to write down. Help them out by being simple and direct. This keeps calls shorter, allowing more callers through.

4. Please be nice! The people answering the phones on Capitol Hill already had the hardest job in DC and some of the lowest pay as well, and for a month now their jobs have become absolute murder, with nonstop calls for 9 hours every day. Thank them for their hard work answering the phones, because without them our Senators could not represent us!

What does this sound like?

"Hi, my name is Mark, I'm a constituent from Seattle, zip code 98***, I don't need a response. I am opposed to banning the sale of blueberries and I encourage the Senator to please oppose implementation of any such ban. Thanks for your hard work answering the phones!"

This is how I wish every caller had phrased their message. It makes it easier for the people answering the phones and takes less time and emotion than a long script. I know that you want to say why, but keeping it short and sweet helps the office answer more calls per hour, meaning more people get heard. The bigger the tally, the more powerful your voice.

Also, when you're reading off the same script as 100 other callers that day... well...they know what you're about to say, so you don't need to use the whole script for your opinion to be heard!

Pick one issue each day, use this format (I am in favor of _____ or I oppose ______), and call your 2 Senators and 1 Representative on their DC and State Office lines, and you'll be on your way to being heard."

(no subject)

Thu, Feb. 16th, 2017 04:15 pm (UTC)
vom_marlowe: (Default)
Posted by [personal profile] vom_marlowe
FWIW, staffers are pretty used to people being a bit incoherent/nervous. A whole lot of people are. They're also used to being BLASTED by the wingnut ranters, so whenever it's clear you're not going to scream at them, it's automatically a bit of goodwill.

The effort it takes for you is an important consideration, I think. Emails or off-hour phone calls are both legit. I've been sending postcards, and I'm pretty psyched about the Pink Slip idea for the Ides of March. (Everyone sends the Prez a pink slip that day, until his office is flooded.) But whatever works right now, I say.

(no subject)

Tue, Feb. 14th, 2017 09:30 pm (UTC)
oracne: turtle (Default)
Posted by [personal profile] oracne
I can't follow all the news, though of course I have spells of nonstop checking. I start freaking out. I've been balancing each march/protest with a day of introversion, or hanging out with the Adorable Tots. I send a fax or sneak in a phone call here and there, trying to go for business hours - it's been very difficult to get through to our Republican senator.

I am trying to focus a bit more on voter rights and immigration stuff, so I signed up to do voter registration after citizenship ceremonies, and potentially be a court escort for immigrants (it will require taking vacation days, so I can't do it often).

And I unfollowed most of my family members on the book of faces, though I did not tell them that.

(no subject)

Wed, Feb. 15th, 2017 02:20 pm (UTC)
oracne: turtle (Default)
Posted by [personal profile] oracne
I know so many introverts it is a great relief to hear there are extroverts working at this, too!

All the different fronts is why I had to try and narrow myself down. I just get scattered and useless, so far as action goes. I don't think there's any way I can get used to constant panic....

(no subject)

Wed, Feb. 15th, 2017 03:05 pm (UTC)
larryhammer: a low-fidelity picture of a man, label: some guy (Default)
Posted by [personal profile] larryhammer
This, all of it.

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oyceter: teruterubouzu default icon (Default)
Oyceter

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