From the diaries by Erick
America was founded on the belief that the power of this nation originates and resides among “We the people.” However, over the years, we have seen a slow decline in our ability to find honest and transparent representation that serves us. In a day and age when most politicians serve themselves, and the special interests, more and more of the American people are demanding new leaders that will answer to us.
As a political training organization, we are constantly looking for new ways to empower individuals and promote greater transparency and accountability in our government and elected officials. With those goals in mind, American Majority is constantly pushing ways in which social media and emerging applications can elevate the voice of “We the people,” not only during an election, but in the day-to-day governance of this great nation. Given the capabilities of today’s interactive media, it’s now possible to continue the conversation started in television debates and newspaper coverage and take them to new levels.
That is why we are so excited about working with the Personal Democracy Forum (PDF) on the 10Questions project. While American Majority and PDF might not always agree on everything, we do agree on this: we need better, more honest, more accountable government. Personal Democracy Forum, in partnership with Google and YouTube, has created a platform to facilitate citizen involvement with political candidates. If, according to the old saying, “all politics is local,” then the time has come to demonstrate that new, interactive media can invigorate local civic engagement around elections — moving from interest to involvement, from spectacle to authentic civil society.
If you are serious about ensuring politicians stay accountable and transparent, join us in this new kind of conversation. Here’s how it works:
- Citizens can post text questions or video questions through YouTube for candidates in the 2010 midterm elections; each race has its own page where they aggregate questions posed for candidates for that specific race.
- Using Google technology, visitors to 10Questions can vote questions up and down. After a set period of public engagement, the 10 top-voted questions in each race are posed to the candidates.
- Candidates then have the opportunity to post video responses, and voters rate those responses for completeness, directness, depth and substance — criteria that are sometimes hard to get out of politicians in the rapid-fire context of a live question.
- Taking part/action only takes a few minutes and anyone can participate in the debate.
- Question submission and voting are open through September 14, so take action now!
For too long the left has been early adopters of technology and strategies such as this, but why? Why can’t limited government conservatives adopt online tools to advance the struggle for a more accountable and responsible government? Now is your time to prove that we can play in the same sandbox. Visit 10Questions.com and get involved. Due to limited resources, and the fact that this is a new idea, not all states and races could be tracked. If you do not see your state accounted for, do not hesitate to submit a request here.
The time has come to update political debates for the digital age. Join with American Majority and the Personal Democracy Forum to change the conversation in this country. Politicians answer to us, so let’s start asking the tough questions.