Activism, Inc.: How the Outsourcing of Grassroots Campaigns - download pdf or read online

By Dana R. Fisher

Activism, Inc. introduces the United States to an more and more ordinary political actor: the canvasser. She’s the twenty-something with the clipboard, preventing you in the street or knocking in your door, the foot soldier of political campaigns.Granted unparalleled entry to the “People’s Project,” an unknown but influential association using left-leaning grassroots politics, Dana Fisher tells the genuine tale of outsourcing politics in the USA. just like the significant organisations that outsourced their customer support to businesses in a foreign country, the grassroots campaigns of nationwide revolutionary movements—including Greenpeace, the Sierra membership, store the kids, and the Human Rights Campaign—have been outsourced at diversified instances to this unmarried association. through the 2004 presidential crusade, the Democratic social gathering an identical outsourcing version for his or her canvassing.Fisher examines the heritage and purpose in the back of political outsourcing at the Left, weaving jointly frank interviews with canvassers, high-ranking political officers around the political spectrum, and People’s venture administration. She compares all of this to the grassroots efforts at the correct, which stay firmly grounded in groups and native politics.This ebook bargains a chilling evaluation of the results of political outsourcing. Connecting local community at the streets all through the United States to the nationwide corporations and political campaigns that make up revolutionary politics, it indicates what occurs to the passionate younger activists outsourced to the consumers of Activism, Inc.

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Additional resources for Activism, Inc.: How the Outsourcing of Grassroots Campaigns Is Strangling Progressive Politics in America

Sample text

Maybe it was my second day at work . . Then, I started canvassing awfully, so it was sort of depressing . . and they pretty much just kept throwing us in, not really giving us a lot of direction actually. Although Brandon expressed discomfort with his quick promotion, he thrived in the environment and chose to return to the canvass in 2003 as a director in the Atlanta office. Kimberly from the Baltimore canvass had a similar experience: “Like from day one, I knew I was training to be a field manager, they told me that on the first day .

Creating Canvassers through the Training Process No experience is needed to get hired as a canvasser for the People’s Project, and the organization offers work to just about everyone who turns up for an interview. Once this motley crew of interested people comes through the door, however, they must be trained. The training process involves being an observer for a day; then, if the applicant is still interested in the job, there is a three-day training period. Canvassers who exceeded the quota set by the office during their first or second day canvassing reported having to train for less time.

Indd 31 5/11/06 11:29:06 AM 32 Institutionalizing Activism words of Emily, who went to school out of town and was working for the Portland canvass during the summer before her junior year in college: “It’s a great summer job and everyone you’re working with is in a similar age group. I mean, everybody is motivated about the same things, and this is definitely the best working environment I’ve ever had as far as the people I work with goes . . ” The canvass office is designed and managed to maintain a sense of community.

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