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January 11, 2006

Stop counterfeit Read the Bills Act

Today’s Downsizer-Dispatch…

We must do immediately something we’d hoped to postpone until Spring. We must start booking me on every radio show in America to tell people about the Read the Bills Act.

And we must start building a coalition of talk show hosts, blogs, and organizations to pass RTBA.

Why were we delaying these things? Why are we rushing to do them now? I’ll tell you.

On Sunday’s ABC program, “This Week,” George Will spoke of the need to “downsize” the federal government. This was immediately followed by another panelist commenting that there needs to be a waiting period before Congress votes on legislation. Do these concepts sound familiar to you?

In our nation’s capitol it’s safe to assume this is no accident. The other panelist suggested, for example, that the waiting period be a mere 72 hours. This was the exact RTBA-counter-proposal Congressman Tom Feeney of Florida made to me when we met in September.

We’ve also heard other rumblings recently that the forces are gathering to offer a counterfeit “Read the Bills Act.” Frankly, I would not be surprised if such a counterfeit is actually called the “Read the Bills Act.” But it will only, at best, require that bills must be posted on the Internet 72-hours before a vote, NOT so that Congress HAS to read them, but so the American people have a CHANCE to read them.

Such a bill would accomplish very little in our mission to Downsize DC. The main reason it’s being considered is to relieve the pressure to pass a true Read the Bills Act. Such a bill would not do the most important thing we intended – slow Congress down and cause them to pass fewer laws and spend less money.

Frankly, ever since I read the book “Marketing Warfare,” by Al Ries and Jack Trout, this is what I expected from Congress – eventually. It makes sense. I expect it to happen soon.

The best way to defeat this deceptive strategy is to introduce RTBA to the American people immediately.

Why have we delayed doing this before? Because we lack the funding and the staff to support a major publicity campaign. I was hoping to grow incrementally so our resources always matched our growth-rate. I now believe we can’t afford to take the time. We must act now.

This will place extreme demands on me. Doing constant interviews, while keeping the organization running, will be difficult. But I have to do it. And I need your help. You can help by contributing here.

The full plan will be explained to you in stages, including an idea for face-to-face lobbying that is easily achievable, but at least 1,000 times stronger than our previous effort in this area. The number 1,000 is significant. You’ll see why in a few days. But the first step is media interviews; As many as possible… as soon as possible.

  • Ideally, we’d hire a public relations firm for the national media. Getting national media is almost impossible without professional help from someone who speaks with the major players on a first-name basis. We estimate that this will cost at least $7,000, but could generate hundreds of thousands of dollars of exposure for RTBA. We need several $1,000 contributors to make this happen. Click here to contribute.
  • We need to pay someone to call talk shows to schedule interviews. This is a big job. I know. I did it for Harry Browne in 2000 when my office scheduled more than 800 interviews for him in ten months time. A volunteer just can’t handle it. It will cost money. Probably $100 per show booked, but each show scheduled is worth hundreds or thousands to us in publicity for RTBA. We need $250 and $100 contributions to make this happen. Click here to contribute.
  • We need to build our own internal media list. Volunteers can help with this. We’ll tell you how in a couple of days. But it will take staff time to manage and use this list. We need contributions of $50, $35, and $25 to make this happen. Click here to contribute.
  • And the more monthly pledges we get the better we’ll be able to plan and execute. Click here to start a monthly pledge.

We need to launch this publicity effort immediately, because my spider-sense is tingling. I sense a fake bill coming. I want to begin doing interviews as soon as possible. We need your financial help to make this happen.

Do you want to tell the world about RTBA, and forestall a fake bill from Congress? Then please contribute today. Your contribution is our budget. Provide the funds, and you’ll get to hear the interviews – and so will the rest of America!

And I’ll ask the hosts I talk with to join the coalition to pass RTBA. I’ll tell you exactly what that will mean over the days ahead. Please, help us do this. Contribute to make it happen by clicking here.

Jim Babka
President, Inc.

P.S. I can’t stress enough the level of urgency I feel. RTBA is, in my not so humble opinion, an issue deserving of national attention.

The other thing I learned from Ries and Trout came from their book “The 22 Immutable Laws of Marketing.” The very first law in that book is “The Law of Leadership – it’s better to be first than it is to be better.” They ask, “Who was the second man to fly solo across the Atlantic Ocean?” Everyone remembers the first, Charles Lindbergh. But Bert Hinkler flew faster and used less fuel. Who remembers Bert?

I don’t want to risk having our version of RTBA become like Bert Hinkler? Do you? If you’re with me, send whatever donation you can, today.

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