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January 15, 2007

Change of plans

Today’s Downsizer-Dispatch . . .

We’re going to change our plan, by going back to our original plan.

If this Dispatch had a theme, it would be “first things first.” So in keeping with that . . .

The first thing we need to do today is keep up the pressure on the Senate to pass the amendment that would strip the grassroots regulations from the so-called lobbying reform bill.

The Senate will vote this week, so they should hear from you today.

We have a chance to win this one, if we keep up the pressure.

If you’ve already contacted the Senate on this issue, do it again. If you haven’t yet, please do so now. You can do so HERE.

Please call too. Your Senators’ phone numbers will appear on the screen when you send your message. Or, if you have a new Senator, and the phone number isn’t listed yet, you can reach them through the Congressional switch-board at 202-224-3121

More “first things first” . . .

Last week we proposed to broadcast “Read the Bills” radio ads in the Washington, DC market, in conjunction with a national press release and a blast fax to Congress. The response from DC Downsizers was mostly silence.

We listened to your silence, and we’re changing our plans accordingly. We have some rules about such things, and we’re going to stick to them. Our rules are these . . .

* Do the easiest things first, so as to gain the resources to do harder things later.
* Commit no random acts. Every step must contribute to taking larger steps.

On reconsideration, it seems to us that our plan for radio ads in Washington, DC violates both of these rules. If the response from Downsizers had been overwhelming things might have been different, but it wasn’t, so they aren’t.

The radio ad plan would’ve been a big leap over anything we’ve done before. And we don’t usually attempt big leaps. We take tiny, relentless steps, that are certain of achieving positive results that we can build-on to do more things better in the future.

Our media advertising plan could also have been a random act. The media has ways and priorities of its own. Their response to our ads could have been . . . total silence.

We don’t want to spend so much of your money on a project that you don’t support, and that is uncertain of success. Instead . . .

We’re going to begin Operation Everywhere in the same way we do everything else. We’re going to follow the path of least resistance. We’re going to do the easiest things first so as to gain the resources to do harder things later. Here’s the benefit to you . . .

The first advertising we do will reach the people who are most likely to actively support Downsize DC and the “Read the Bills Act.” This means your money will be used to recruit more people to apply more pressure on Congress and make your voice heard by more people.

The path of least resistance for RTBA is for us to buy clickable ads on web pages visited by likely DC Downsizers. We’re making the preparations to buy the first of these ads today.

You can make sure we buy as many of these ads as possible this month by making a contribution HERE. Or, you can make it more likely we’ll be able to buy ads again next month, by starting a monthly credit card pledge HERE. You can also tell us which web pages you think we should buy ads on by leaving a comment in the comments section when you make your contribution. Or, . . .

If you’ve made a recent contribution, but have ideas about the web pages we should choose, send us an email at

The more you give the more ads we can buy, and the more people will learn about the “Read the Bills Act” and So contribute if you can.

Thank you for being a DC Downsizer.

Jim Babka
President, Inc.

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