8
   

How do you become involved in local politics?

 
 
Linkat
 
Reply Thu 19 Mar, 2009 01:43 pm
I just saw this news report about our local DPW. Basically, the news team did an investigation and found that in a 5 hour shift DPW worked a total of about 15 " 20 minutes. They showed how they started out the day during personal errands: going to the bank, going to bakery and bringing the baked goods home. They showed them hanging out watching a parade for 3 hours and then doing 15 minutes of clean up. Then they showed the mayor’s brother in law bringing the DPW truck home and using it for personal reasons (against DPW rules) all while accruing overtime. As a matter of fact this brother in law received over 31k of overtime.

Our illustrious mayor was also caught redecorating his office with carpet that cost just shy of $19k and bought himself a nice 47-inch flat screen TV for his office. All this while proposing a major tax hike. After much criticism he did end up donating the TV to a senior center.

For the first time I sent a scathing email to our mayor. Now I want to actually do something, but really don’t know how. Is anyone familiar with local politics? How does one get involved? I would love to support a candidate that would be positive for the city. I am damn sick and tired of politics as usual and I hope I can help out at least locally.
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Type: Question • Score: 8 • Views: 1,625 • Replies: 24
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CalamityJane
 
  1  
Reply Thu 19 Mar, 2009 02:27 pm
@Linkat,
Quote:
I would love to support a candidate that would be positive for the city.


Start volunteering for the candidate of your choice. You can call his/her office
and ask for volunteer positions and from there you can branch out into different causes what's dear to you.
Linkat
 
  1  
Reply Thu 19 Mar, 2009 02:34 pm
@CalamityJane,
But where do I even get this information - I am assuming I have to wait until we are getting closer to another city election - otherwise I never hear of any potential candidates.
CalamityJane
 
  1  
Reply Thu 19 Mar, 2009 02:45 pm
@Linkat,
Linkat, here is a list of volunteers in the Boston area - there is plenty of
opportunities in politics - further down the page
http://www.americantowns.com/ma/boston-make-a-difference
CalamityJane
 
  1  
Reply Thu 19 Mar, 2009 02:46 pm
@CalamityJane,
Here is one specific for the Democratic party in Massachusetts
http://www.massdems.org/index2.cfm

(assuming you're a democrat here Wink )
Linkat
 
  1  
Reply Thu 19 Mar, 2009 02:48 pm
@CalamityJane,
Thanks - one thing I can say - I did get a response from the mayor - within an hour of my letter. He gave me a contact name and phone number so I could arrange a meeting to discuss any questions I may have.

I might have to take him up on that as how else do you keep these politicans in check? With all that is going on in our country and locally, I may be forced into action!
Linkat
 
  1  
Reply Thu 19 Mar, 2009 02:50 pm
@CalamityJane,
I'm an independent.
CalamityJane
 
  1  
Reply Thu 19 Mar, 2009 03:06 pm
@Linkat,
That's great that they gave you a contact name and phone number. This could
be your start into politics. Linkat for president!! Very Happy
Linkat
 
  1  
Reply Thu 19 Mar, 2009 03:14 pm
@CalamityJane,
Heavens no! I am not a politician - and I would NOT want to be president. I would never subject me or my family to the crap they have to deal with.

But I would be willing to check on these guys and report on it to you all!
0 Replies
 
Roberta
 
  1  
Reply Thu 19 Mar, 2009 03:15 pm
There are many local political clubs that are active year-round. When I moved from the Bronx to Manhattan, I found the local Democratic club in the phone book. You can probably find a club on the Internet.

When I got fed up with local politics, I decided to support causes rather than people. There are plenty of clubs for this as well.

Good luck.
0 Replies
 
Linkat
 
  1  
Reply Thu 19 Mar, 2009 03:20 pm
Now that I have been invited to talk with (maybe not the mayor) but some one in his office - what sort of questions should I ask? I want to be prepared - I want to be hard, but fair. Should I mention the expensive carpet? Should I ask about the raising of taxes? Should I ask about him canning his b-i-l/what they are doing about the dpw - should I be straight and not mince my words?
spendius
 
  1  
Reply Thu 19 Mar, 2009 06:32 pm
@Linkat,
Quote:
I'm an independent.


In that case you would be better forgetting all about it.
0 Replies
 
okie
 
  1  
Reply Thu 19 Mar, 2009 08:04 pm
@Linkat,
Linkat wrote:

I just saw this news report about our local DPW. Basically, the news team did an investigation and found that in a 5 hour shift DPW worked a total of about 15 " 20 minutes. They showed how they started out the day during personal errands: going to the bank, going to bakery and bringing the baked goods home. They showed them hanging out watching a parade for 3 hours and then doing 15 minutes of clean up. Then they showed the mayor’s brother in law bringing the DPW truck home and using it for personal reasons (against DPW rules) all while accruing overtime. As a matter of fact this brother in law received over 31k of overtime.

Our illustrious mayor was also caught redecorating his office with carpet that cost just shy of $19k and bought himself a nice 47-inch flat screen TV for his office. All this while proposing a major tax hike. After much criticism he did end up donating the TV to a senior center.

For the first time I sent a scathing email to our mayor. Now I want to actually do something, but really don’t know how. Is anyone familiar with local politics? How does one get involved? I would love to support a candidate that would be positive for the city. I am damn sick and tired of politics as usual and I hope I can help out at least locally.


I am not joking, it sounds like you have a bunch of Democrats running things where you live. And with Obama's card check proposal, maybe everybody could have a job like the ones you describe, with a union to help them do it.
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Thu 19 Mar, 2009 09:10 pm
I've been quite involved in local politics.

My advice - read first.
Linkat
 
  1  
Reply Fri 20 Mar, 2009 10:40 am
@okie,
You are most likely correct. When I first moved to this city about 11 years ago - I read the democraphics - I think I screwed up the % because there was probably about 80% democrats, 15% republicans and less than a percent independent (the rest is for non-voters is my guess).

I may have caused the independents to gain a 1%.
0 Replies
 
Linkat
 
  1  
Reply Fri 20 Mar, 2009 10:40 am
@ossobuco,
Read what?
0 Replies
 
sozobe
 
  1  
Reply Fri 20 Mar, 2009 01:21 pm
@Linkat,
What's your goal?
Linkat
 
  1  
Reply Fri 20 Mar, 2009 01:25 pm
@sozobe,
Just to get information to support a future candidate/candidates.
sozobe
 
  1  
Reply Fri 20 Mar, 2009 01:29 pm
@sozobe,
Busy and might not be able to check back for a while, so will go ahead with:

- If your goal is to effect change, yelling at the mayor won't do anything. Speaking quietly to the mayor won't do anything. Putting up big, labor-intensive charts won't do anything. He'll nod and smile and then when you're gone he'll go back to doing things the way they were done before.

- If you want to effect change, you need to go bigger. Find an opponent -- someone who plans to run against this mayor -- and if you think the opponent is OK, volunteer for that person. Organize some sort of petition drive. Bother the local newspapers until they start really looking into the outrages (if they haven't already) or until they make a bigger stink. Create some sort of newsworthy event -- naked ladies always get the media Smile -- and then air your peeves in a punchy and succinct way (do your research first).

- If you're personally mad and want to vent, go for it. Probably won't have much of an effect beyond the immediate ventiness, but it's your right and if it makes you feel better, might be worth it for you.
sozobe
 
  1  
Reply Fri 20 Mar, 2009 01:30 pm
@Linkat,
Ah, you're there after all, didn't expect that.

I don't really get it -- you're talking to the current mayor to get information to support a future candidate?
 

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