Early adopter, entrepreneur, leader interested in software, the Internet, mobile telephony and computing, and VoIP. Founder or senior management with The Personal Bee, Orb Networks, CallTrex, Borland (BORL), The Dr. Spock Company, Neta4, WhoWhere?, CMP Media, and IT Solutions.

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Thursday, February 24, 2005

Now YOU do it

It was nice to be recognized yesterday by Jerry Brown for helping him get started on his blog. But it is more important to recognize a truth in this that Margaret Meade put so well:
A small group of thoughtful people could change the world. Indeed, it's the only thing that ever has.
I am just an ordinary citizen. I didn't know Jerry Brown before I emailed him back in December. But a little persistence on my part, and a willingness to listen on his part has launched a grand new experiment -- the mayor of a large American city, creating a direct channel for communication with the networked electorate. Politics and Government can be changed, for the better.

Now its your turn. Pick a local or statewide politician in your area. Contact him or her and do what I did -- say, I'm just a local citizen that happens to be a part of your electorate, and I think you should have a blog. Create more transparency in government. Connect with us as voters and citizens and let us know who you really are and what you believe. Don't be a press release, be a person.

In an article in the San Francisco Chronicle, Brown commented to interviewers Matier and Ross:
"As an old talk-show host, I've had some experience in unrehearsed dialogue," said Brown, who hosted a daily program on the Pacifica network in the 1990s. Blogging, he said, is "the logical next step."
As with talk-shows, blogs can be insipid and boring at their worst but insightful and even profound at their best. But the most important thing about both is that they remove all of the middlemen -- the PR handlers, the aides and advisors, and the journalists and editors. These mediums provide an opportunity for the true voice of the individual to be heard clearly. As with the advent of television, this new kind of access to elected officials and candidates will have a tremendous impact on how we think about politics and politicians. Instead of reducing the race to a competition on how witty, attractive, or smooth a candidate might be, hopefully blogging politicians will help surface real issues, opinions, biases, and attitudes. And hopefully it will get us all more involved in our democracy.

Web tedshelton.blogspot.com