Thanks so much for all the thoughtful and often detailed comments on our post yesterday, Memo to Readers: If You Want to Beat Big Finance, You Need to be Able to Take the Fight to Their Terrain. We are all looking for avenues and leverage points to reduce the power of Big Finance in our economy and increasingly in our communities. You gave us a lot of insight into what we are doing that works for you and what we might consider doing that would be more effective.
It was very helpful to see so many first time and infrequent commentors weigh in since hearing from those of you who don’t often speak up gives us a much better perspective. Moreover, it was gratifying as well as instructive to see how many of you are carrying the things you learn at NC and other sites to other audiences, like your children and grandchildren, local officials, and people in your Facebook groups. We also got more input from other readers, as well as allies, via e-mail.
What we saw is that despite the legitimate concern that some voiced over whether it is effective to take the fight to the banksters’ terrain, even more seem to accept it as a viable approach, even if it is often hard to observe progress. Many readers, including those who wrote to us privately, did confirm that they read the denser posts and value them highly even if they don’t feel the need to pipe up in comments as much as on other material. And quite a few readers approved of our urging readers, as we have on fights where we think input from citizens can make a difference, like on the Fast Track/TPP battle in Congress, to provide links and guidance as to how to make your voice heard, and encouraged us to come up with more concrete action items.
If you haven’t had time to give us your point of view, it’s not too late to tell us what you think. Lambert and I both went through the comments so far and had a long discussion of how to incorporate your ideas and views into our work. While we’d like to be able to use all good suggestions, we are resource-constrained. Whether we can implement some suggestions also depends on whether the right technology tools exist. We’ll be getting back to you over the next month with further thoughts and preliminary plans to obtain additional reader input. Some did point out that I’ve gotten rougher with members of the commentariat over time and that that’s a deterrent for some. I recognize that I have gotten more impatient and sharp-edged, particularly in combatting defeatism as a meme, and I will work at refraining from wheeling out the heavy artillery too early and often.
Finally, two readers told us about how they had lost their homes to the meat grinder of HAMP mods. I can’t imagine how devastating that would be. Yet despite suffering such huge personal losses, they have not given up. As crittermom said:
Yet the more I find out, the madder I am, as well. As a victim, I sign petitions, & scream at the injustice brought upon us citizens & allowed (encouraged?), by a govt that no longer represents us.
Even if you have limited personal resources, if you have time, there are things you can do to educate yourself and the people around you. Knowledge is a necessary foundation for action, no matter what type of action you decide in the end to take. And more important than the particular information we convey is in reminding readers that other seemingly powerful oligarchies have fallen due to their own short-sightedness and indifference to the needs of broader communities, which, despite their pretenses otherwise, they really do depend. As the financiers’ hypersensitivity to criticism attests, they are vulnerable, even if people like us have yet to find the right leverage points. So we continue to value your input and participation in this effort to effect change.