Friday, April 16, 2010

Let’s Just Give Up . . .

Sometime Sunday we’ll roll out yet another series of Activity Requests for your participation and just like this message it will simply be deleted by many members without even opening it up. In some cases there was apathy and lute warm commitment from the beginning but in far more instances it is just burnout. How do we know this? Simple, we’re just like you . . . we have a life, a family, a job, we enjoy springtime and we’d rather be doing something else than pushing for passage of HR3149. We’re private citizens and don’t work for some member of Congress, nor are we some perky cheerleader types that were looking for something to cheer for when we came across HR3149. We’re not your leader, but instead we’re your contemporary working for the same thing you’re working for. About once a week we hit the wall and say to ourselves, ‘let’s just give up,’ but then something like this week’s NYT article (linked below) arrives (1+ M readers), or we get a message of encouragement from a member, or just a good old stubborn streak inside of us says ‘hell no we won’t quit, not now, not ever until all Americans are protected from workplace discrimination based upon their personal credit reports.’ NYT Article:

We wouldn’t fight if we didn’t know we can win, nor would we expect you to fight. Here’s how we know we can win: similar legislation is already law in three states and in every single survey and in comments to articles 90 percent of “the people” support the legislation. The vast majority of that 90 percent have good credit and “no dog in the fight,” but when you consider that in July ’09, long before the economic collapse, 70+ million Americans had issues with “bad credit.” Hello! We only have 308 million Americans and 99 million are under 19 or older than 75. That leaves only 209 million potentially impacted by workplace discrimination based upon credit reports. If 1/3 of this 209 million was suffering from “bad credit” long before the economic collapse, what do you think the number is now with 8+ million lost jobs and a 9.7% rate of unemployment (15+ M people)? The percentage of the impacted population could very easily be 50% or even higher. Here are some very good clues and indicators:

* 379,000 Bankruptcies Filed Q1, 2010, (17 percent increase over Q1, 2009 during a year in a year which they soared upward by 32%)

* 35% Increase in Foreclosures (6,000+ per day) and a 16% Increase in Foreclosure Notices Q1, 2010 (over Q1, 2009) and 1 in every 4 Homes in America are at least 10+ % “underwater” (a.k.a. upside down).

* Consumers shedding debts by defaulting on loans is rampant and growing fast. Debt still averages nearly $45,000 per American, or about 122% of disposable income. Most analysts believe a “sustainable” debt load is around 100% of disposable income which means the hemorrhaging and loan defaults have just begun.

So what’s our point . . . WE HAVE THE NUMBERS TO WIN! Even if you were to subtract out all Americans who still have good credit and with “no dog in the fight” we still have the numbers to win. During an election year, at least, numbers will beat the corporate money we’re fighting against.

While we are unrelenting in trying to encourage you to recruit new members to our Facebook group and we continue to add like minded groups to our cause, winning actually comes down to one single obstacle . . . NO ONE KNOWS THIS LEGISLATION EXISTS! That’s why we push so hard and so often for media exposure. Once “the people” know the legislation exists, we win! It’s almost just that simple. When we began this group back in mid November, there was virtually ZERO media coverage whatsoever anywhere, but largely due to our efforts that has changed with the recent NYT article, AP article, MSNBC article and coverage on talk radio and on blogs. Now hardly a day passes without some coverage somewhere in the media. We’ve made huge progress and every blip of coverage adds that many more people to the cause. What’s more, every blip adds to the snowball and makes more coverage that much easier. Every week that passes we see the frequency increase in small increments, but it doesn’t happen by chance or magic. It’s because of you and you alone are working both within and outside our group to demonstrate there is a demand for coverage. The more e-mails, etc. the media get, the more often they get them, the more they cover the story . . . it’s not rocket science!

Your e-mails, letters and phone calls count, ever single one of them . . . don’t assume that other members will do your job because they may be assuming the exact same thing. At every turn in this game it’s about the numbers and only about the numbers when it comes to commanding attention and winning. Never say die, never give in by making your membership in our group count and your voice heard relentlessly and we will win . . . we have the numbers of Americans behind us we just have to get them informed.


  1. Hi. I'm one of the guys that just deletes your messages.

    I respect your position on this issue. However, from the moment I've become a fan of your Facebook page I've received countless messages attacking politicians that commonly work for the people.

    One example is a message you sent out a few weeks ago attacking Barney Frank. You said that he didn't want to pass HR 3149 because he received large donations from the credit reporting companies.

    And yet you didn't have any evidence of this, other than that the bill was in his committee and hadn't been passed with lightning fast speed.

    There are a lot of bills in committee right now. Just because they don't get out of there in a matter of days is not proof that a Congressman doesn't support the bill. And there was no statement made from Rep. Frank in which he was as hostile towards the bill as you claim. So I have no idea what Congressman Frank's stance toward the bill is, but I was being asked to attack a strongly progressive Congressman like a pissed off teabagger just because there was a suspicion that he wasn't on board with the bill.

    That puts off a lot of people. There's a strong "with us 100% or against us completely" mentality in the letters we receive. We're asked to attack anyone who doesn't share your passion for this bill.

    What would work better is to ask us to encourage others to support the bill, not launch into a blind attack against others.

    That's just my two cents.

  2. I like the above two cents.

  3. I second what Anonymous said...anonymously

  4. Agreed with the top post. If you are trying to build a broad based movement to win you need to be very careful in attacking your natural allies. Also, I recieve more messages from your site than any of the other over 300 sites I belong to. Sometimes less is more. Write shorter messages, send them less and often, and I think you will have better response.

  5. Fantastic Feedback!!!!! That's what we want. Opinions, interaction, opportunities to learn from our membership and hopefully benefit from the learning. First off anything we write, especially sample letters, is just our "two cents" worth. We can't write for everyone or even anyone in the group because we're not you, we're us. Secondly a wide mix of tone and approach is best and that's why with every sample letter we encourage diversity in approach and for you to write you own letters, express you own opinions and do it in your own way. Thirdly, in reference to Barney Frank, while we can prove he took $25 K from the credit bureaus and we question why, the write above is correct that we don't have any statement whatsoever that he opposes the bill. However, with very few exceptions we don't have any statements from any member of Congress that they oppose the bill. That's simply not how they work. They instead say things such as: 'I'll have to see what it looks like when it comes out of committee before I take a position.' We believe that is just a political game and therefore we try to call them on that game and pin them down. Is that the best approach, maybe not?
    Believe it or not, we're not trying to create a "fan base" for us or our approach, we just want to provide a channel where all members partcipate to enable volume. Unfortunately, frequency is also critical because only repeated efforts on a constant basis has any real hope of success. Millions of people are being impacted and they simply don't have the time for a slow response from Congress.
    We read every message and blog comment and we believe that we have learned and will continue to learn, but again we are who we are and we can't write for everyone nor do we try. So thanks for the worthwhile fantastic feedback and we'll keep fine tuning and moving forward. That's how progress is made.

    Keep that feedback and input coming that's how we learn to better serve you our membership. Lastly, we have plenty of seats at the table. Want to write, work on strategy, do research, help with our tone and approach, etc. Shoot us a note and we'll get you involved.

  6. Just to be completely clear . . . we have no firm platform that you have to buy into, we have no tone that you're expected to follow, we have no political dogma or party that we push. If you're from the far left of the far right that's fine with us. If you love Congress that's fine with us or if you hate Congress that's fine with us. We want our tent to be a large as possible and all we care about is one thing and one thing only passing HR3149 or passing similiar legislation in ever state and that what gets passed isn't some watered down legislation with no teeth or help for the vast majority of the population. That's it . . . that's our platform, our focus and our mission.

  7. As a union member, I believe that people are already burdened enough with credit referencing that destroys an indivigual's credit to create "revenue streams" or what I call strong arming.Now the credit and banking industries want to control where we can work or work at all based on our credit number.I wonder if these soleless drones ever thought that it might be remotely PATRIOTIC to build up your fellow AMERICANs when he or she is down.Maybe..just maybe..these terrible sweaty worker bees that are late 2 hours on their payments NEED a job.It is a sad day when policy has superceded morality and goodness of the heart. I'm not talking about irresponsible people, just hard working people on hard times.

  8. When i get these posts I never see them as lets go out and blindly attack any politician. Some of the posts have had links attached that show the source for the info regarding payoffs and such.
    I think what Ron is trying to say is you need to be very active if you want ANY bill passed just agreeing with a position doesn't convince any politician to vote yea. Complacency is tearing our nation apart. Just blogging about something doesn't change anything. I come from the old school and still see value in going to the streets. There is something to be said for a sea of humans on the Plaza to get a point across. Get active people! No matter what your passion is. Care enough about it to write a letter, make a call or two. That is the only way to effect change in the USA.