My First 100 Days: A Philosophical Revolution Against Apathy

The Background, The Lead-up, and The Revelation

What I’ve Done in My First 100 Days, a List
UPDATED 10/9/2009 for the next 100 days!

Throughout the 2008 Presidential election period, I was concerned about the direction in which both candidates were headed. Either represented an expansion in government – one a little bit more, one a whole lot more. This was a difficult election for me, and for many other like-minded individuals who believe in the principles of limited government and free market principles. Nonetheless, when the outcome was decided, I was determined to keep an open mind and see how things progressed. If anything, I did at least share in the pride that America seemed to be making a huge step toward putting racial inequality behind us.

During this time, it just so happened that I was home recovering for several months after a spinal surgery, capable of doing little else than sleeping, reading or watching television (trust me, it gets boring,

The Stimulus Bill Debate

The Stimulus Bill Debate

real fast). Throughout January and February, my eyes were glued to C-SPAN as I followed the debates on Capitol Hill over the Stimulus Bill, then the budget and omnibus bill, as well as the congressional hearings on the bailouts, and AIG, and GM and Chrysler. When I wasn’t watching C-SPAN, I was reading the Stimulus Bill – every single page of it, in every version (yes, I know, probably the ONLY one who actually read the bill!). The more I focused my attention on what was going on in Washington DC, the more passionate I became about the issues. What I was witnessing was an expansion of government that, in my opinion, was unprecedented. Worse yet, the rapid pace at which it was occurring and the sheer negligence of the methods in which it was being undertaken was nothing short of irresponsible.

By this time, it was no longer curiosity or interest, but a sense of duty that I felt to remain engaged in the issues and the proceedings in which they were being debated. I began calling people – family, friends, co-workers – and telling them what was being debated on the House and Senate floors. I read to them so many of the details conveniently hidden away deep inside the legalese of the Stimulus Bill that I recognized to be the equivalent of radical, sweeping policy changes. At first, most people insisted that I must be misinterpreting the language, dismissing my concerns and saying “oh, they can’t do that…that’s not going to happen.” I began to feel like “Chicken Little”, screaming for people to pay attention, even emailing media outlets almost daily, pleading with them to READ THE BILL and scrutinize it.

It was March when I truly realized for myself that this country is in trouble. I found myself struggling to define what it is that we need to fight against. And then it dawned on me; the threat isn’t from Democrats or Republicans, left wingers or right wingers. The threat to the very sovereignty of this nation is APATHY. It is apathy that we must fight. Too many Americans get behind “the hype” and support the “feel-good policies” of the day. Too few stop to analyze those and think about what they mean to our Constitution, to our free market principles, our liberties. I realized that I’d almost been one of those people who hadn’t really fully considered the implications, and pondered alternatives that, while perhaps harder to offer up, might be more appropriate for the nation as a whole and more in line with the very model of limited government that I’d supposedly stood behind.

It was then it dawned on me, with an almost eerie sense of sobering clarity, that it would be entirely up to us – the American people – to stop the insanity and help revive the nation’s respect for the Constitution.

I thought –
“We have to start a movement; we need a Revolution. Not one of weapons and soldiers, but a Revolution of minds, one of words and ideas. We need a philosophical Revolution. The only way we can drive the ‘right’ change is by changing views, changing perceptions, changing minds. We must fight Apathy with every bit of fervor as if it were crime, armed with information and education.”       And then I remembered two famous quotes:

“It does not require a majority to prevail, but rather an irate, tireless minority keen to set brush fires in people’s minds.”   – Samuel Adams

“Educate and inform the whole mass of the people… They are the only sure reliance for the preservation of our liberty.” —Thomas Jefferson

And so it was that I decided to get involved, and I made it my first objective to find inspiration again in the history of our founding fathers, their writings and the Constitution, and the greatness of our country. As I became more motivated, I immediately recognized that there was a whole other additional component to what I could personally contribute to this movement.

Since I’m in Web Strategy and Marketing as a profession, I realized that the greatest impact I could have on the causes would be to leverage my background and skills to mobilize people and to equip as many of them as possible with the information, materials and tools to go out and do the same.

And so, with these two areas of focus I’d defined for myself, I embarked upon a journey that in its short lifetime thus far has taught me more than I’d ever learned in schools, and it has rewarded me with new friends, new respect for and from others, and enriched my life with a new found appreciation for everything that our country has to offer.

And with that, I share with you what I’ve done in My First 100 Days, and the next 100. It’s just a start. I hope to see these efforts grow tremendously in the next 100…and the next 100 after that. If every one of us did any or all of these things, imagine the real CHANGE there would be.

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My First 100 Days, a List

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  • First, I read important, relevant books: “The 5,000 Year Leap”, “The Making of America”, and “New Deal or Raw Deal? How FDR’s Economic Legacy has Damaged America”. I’ve re-read Thomas Paine’s “Common Sense”, and Adam Smith’s “The Wealth of Nations.” Many more will follow.
  • Then, I officially joined the Libertarian Party!
  • Most importantly, I created and launched libertychick.com.

    I established the “Liberty Chick” blog & website with the goal of empowering others with the information and the tools to become an advocate themselves, to inspire them to become engaged in the issues, to have the confidence to get involved, and to have the courage to challenge apathy. (For me personally, it was also a therapeutic means of doing something productive with my frustration).

    Through Liberty Chick, I’ve accomplished so much in just the initial days since it launched in April 2009 (Updates for the next 100 days are noted in red):

    • Articles, posts and references on issues relating to our Constitution and free enterprise have been viewed over 7,500 times  This has since increased to over 35,000 times.
    • About 1,500 912ers have come to The 9.12 Project Member Resources section on LibertyChick.com for resources in promoting their events or making their voices heard
      This has more than doubled since then.
    • Over 500 912ers have downloaded Tea Party talking points and graphics for their 4/15 events. More are planning for 7/4 events.
      At least 3,800 talking points documents, brochures and signs have been downloaded for tea parties and 912 Project events.
    • Over 1,200 912ers participated in the campaign to write to media sponsors in protest of media bias & irresponsible tea party coverage (or…um…non-coverage)
      This has also more than doubled since then.
    • Nearly 1,500 have followed my special series of research on ACORN, SEIU and their related affiliations.  Since then, there have been more than 13,000 visits to ACORN posts alone, and there have been about 3,000 downloads of ACORN related research documents.
    • In its short lifetime, Liberty Chick has so far been a wonderfully productive outlet. I’ve turned my daily reading, researching and reviewing into an online outreach tool to share my findings with others and to publicly exchange views on the issues. The site provides research sources, references, education & training resources, talking points and lots of marketing resources to visitors. Most of all, it encourages me to know that the site is helping others strategize online as e-activists, and provides additional means for them to harness the Internet to prepare for and promote their own events and activities.

And in parallel, here are some of the other things I’ve been able to do to help drive change in the “right” direction:

  • In addition to joining The 9.12 Project, I’ve joined several local 9.12 Project networks, as well as joined 10 additional cause-related groups whose causes range from protecting our free-market system, to promoting private-industry based Health Care reform, to empowering Conservative women in politics.  Since then, I’ve proudly taken on the added responsibility of NJ state representative for The 9.12 Project.
  • I’m on Twitter! I’m now actively and productively utilizing Twitter as Liberty_Chick, to engage other 912ers and like-minded individuals in discussion about the issues of today. And I’m especially proud to contribute to the fight of others who need strength in numbers to battle their cause, like ACORN Whistleblower Anita Moncrief for instance, with whom I (and many other bloggers) jointly share and distribute research and posts to engage others in her fight against political corruption and manipulation of the system.  I’ve of course since added Facebook and Ning to my social networking arsenal.
  • I’ve signed and promoted multiple petitions, ranging from Redress of Grievances, to fighting the “Employee Free (Forced) Choice Act”, to fighting to Stop ACORN from Accessing Taxpayer Dollars, and more.
  • I’ve written numerous letters to Congress and the White House, sharing my personal stories on issues such as Health Care and taxes, and expressing my views on policies regarding the Stimulus Bill, out of control spending, government intervention in the free-markets system & the unnecessary expansion of government, Cap and Trade, and Health Care reform. I’ve also written letters to my utility companies and the state Board of Public Utilities regarding forced “weatherization & energy assistance programs”, and letters to all of my respective insurance companies and the state Department of Banking & Insurance regarding my Health Care Insurance, Car Insurance, and Homeowner’s Insurance. (Dept. Of Banking & Insurance, by the way, actually resolved for me a $100,000+ dispute with my health care insurer – the proper role of government!).
  • Every day, I make it a point to post constructive comments on at least 3 to 5 websites promoting causes that are harmful to our free-market system, harmful to our Constitution, or simply un-American. I post comments that constructively outline my views, providing examples or supporting facts behind my comments. There needs to be healthy debate out there, and every single one of us can easily contribute to that by doing the same, even if you have little time to do much else.
  • I’ve helped several other 912ers get started online, assisting them in their efforts to create their own websites and/or hosting and promoting their events and activities. And judging by the emails that I receive from Liberty Chick visitors, I suspect that many others have been able to utilize some of the tools in The 9.12 Project Member Resources section to help themselves create their own websites.
  • I’ve created the 912 Project of NJ website to give NJ 912ers a central location from which to connect with one another and find their local chapters. The Liberty Chick website serves as the educational outreach & marketing resource to the NJ 912 Project site.
  • I’ve joined on with the NJ Tea Parties United, a coalition of tea party and 912 Project groups from counties all across the state of NJ, serving in a consulting / partner role of sorts to help provide organizing and networking assistance to the individual county groups as requested, as well as to the statewide committee
  • I can’t even count the number of new groups and organizers with whom I’ve formed networking relationships.  All I can say is that when this started in March of 2009, I received maybe 40 emails per day.  Now, I receive anywhere from 150 to 400 emails per say, and I participate in at least 2 conference calls and speak to at least 5 or 6 individual organizers every week. That’s a good indicator that more Americans are waking up!
  • I’ve created a variety of 912 Project brochures for use by any chapter, as well as created custom marketing materials for a number of individual groups that were in need of volunteer design and content assistance.
  • I attended several town halls to voice my concerns (and found no need to yell!), attended numerous marches and tea parties, and am helping to organize more events as we speak.  Two of those events include “Making of America” seminars and 5,000 Year Leap series.
  • I’ve appeared on the Glenn Beck program twice to support our fellow 912ers. (Maybe one day I’ll actually get to talk about a topic or two!)
  • I’m moving mindsets by making music.
    One last mention: As an ancillary benefit to all this, I’ve also found a new sense of inspiration again that I’d feared had burned out long ago. I’ve been a musician and artist all my life – having dedicated the first 25 years of my life, including my college education, to my “other” career as a classical flutist. One of my loves has always been performing and recording patriotic music, which has unfortunately dwindled significantly in its popularity since my days as a child. But this period in history, and my own dedication to reigniting a sense of patriotism, have both sparked a new sense of creative inspiration for me. I’m once again learning to enjoy the power of music and to appreciate the talents that I’ve been so lucky to develop; I’m motivated again to put those talents to good use and to give back to others who may enjoy the same emotional connection to our country through the power of patriotic music. I’ve just begun putting some plans together to start mobilizing musicians to help us change mindsets through patriotic music again – just like the parade days I enjoyed as a child.

My First 100 Days has been a busy 100 days. My next 100 has been even busier. And I’m sure I probably forgot many things. But as I said, it’s only a start. I look forward to all the rest of my days ahead of me, both the good days and the bad. In the end, I want to look back on them as days that made a difference.

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1 Comment

Filed under Bailouts, Budget, Congress Alert, Constitution, Economy, education, First 100 Days, Government Size, Libertarian, obama, Presidential Budget, radical, Revolution, Small Government, Socialism, stimulus, tea parties, The 912 Project, the912Project, Uncategorized

One response to “My First 100 Days: A Philosophical Revolution Against Apathy

  1. Drew Eckel

    Hey there Liberty Chick, ever consider running for Pres in ’12? I like what you’ve accomplished in your first 100 days infinitely more than what Lord Obama hath wrought.

    Keep up the great (and critical) work!

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