This group fell out of use a few years ago when Ron Fournier of the Associated Press opened a similar but larger site called "HOTSOUP". Due to technical difficulties, that site has closed. So we're dusting off reuniting_usa and putting it back in service.
This group was started four years ago when only a handful of people realized the dangers of polarization and division. On behalf of those people, WE TOLD YOU SO. The giant ideological rift in America is now high on Obama's list of things to fix if he is to get this country out of the hole it's in. (Make no mistake, if McCain had won, he'd be tackling the same task.)
I'm updating the user info to incorporate some of the good things that came out of HOTSOUP. If you're returning to this group, or are a new member, please let me know what you think of the new user info here. Also, if you have any other intelligent, open-minded friends, please invite them here.
Even if you didn't agree with the Nixon pardon, please pass the "Ford Pledge" request to your congressman. This is a great opportunity to get a message out about reunification, even if that message is only symbolic. (Heck, half of the things that come out of congress are symbolic. At least this will show them how tired we are of the partisian wars)
The Ford Pledge and instructions are posted here on HOTSOUP:
At an office group lunch today, C. jumped into a conversation of how bad war was, how sad it is, and why can't Israel and Lebanon just be peaceful. It was a very idealist view, and it prompted T. to give a patient lecture about how peace hasn't worked there, how Israel had endured Hizbollah for years, and how finally they said enough was enough, and went in. I respect T.; as a former U.S. Marine and a former art student, I'm betting that he has some interesting viewpoints. However, when I entered the conversation by saying that current Israeli policy was probably formed more from Sharon's stroke allowing the even more hawkish Olmert to rise to power, T. dropped out of the conversation, and went back to doodling on the tablecloth. (We were at Macaroni Grill, where this doesn't constitute vandalism)
I really wanted to continue the conversation, but I didn't try to force it. I don't feel like I was awkwardly interjecting, but maybe I was. People don't want to disagree with co-workers. I understand that. But I'm still frustrated.
Well! I talked to Ron Fournier @ Hotsoup on Friday. It was a bittersweet experience - first I was dazzled by what he told me, then I was sworn into not talking about it. Which kinda murders my ability to encourage a lively debate about the news site, and what our roles in their community would mean. The best I can offer up right now is to ask you to read their press release page (which seems to be currently down) and comment on that.
I will say this - there is some potential for this site to dramatically effect the division in opinions in America, although I still am keeping a stock of healthy skepticism in the back shed. In lieu of being able to say what's going to be on their site, I'll just ask what do you think should be on their site?
Here's a question for general dissection: If hotsoup.com succeeds in building a balanced news source, will Americans be ready for it? Or are we spoiled by news sources who don't so much report as they do preach to the choir?
Consider this: A non-biased news source might tell you something you don't like or disagree with. Would that message make you reconsider your views, or would you be more apt to write off that story as biased towards the other 'side'? There have been so many biased news reports floating around lately, I think the latter might be the public's knee-jerk reaction.
And if this is the case, what would a non-biased news source have to do to re-educate the public to think differently about the news?
If you haven't heard, a new news site is scheduled to open in October 2006 that will provide news without the bias and spin that accompanies many of today's sources. The site is called hotsoup.com, and it hopes to achieve its balance by drawing on its all-star staff of founders:
· Ron Fournier (former chief political writer for the Associated Press) · Mark McKinnon (directed George W. Bush ad campaigns) · Joe Lockhart (Bill Clinton's former Press Secretary) · Matthew Dowd (Chief Strategist for the Bush-Cheney campaign in 2004) · Carter Eskew (Chief Strategist for Al Gore's 2000 campaign) · Allie Savarino (Internet advertising pioneer; President of Sisterwoman.com) · Michael Feldman (Senior Advisor to the Vice President & Clinton-Gore WH veteran) · John deTar (Advertising veteran & Founding Partner of Sisterwoman.com community) · Chip Smith (Managing Partner, Glover Park Group and former Gore adviser) · Bart Barden (Web design specialist, led architecture team for MSN Web channels)
Since their site sounded like it was very much in line with the mission of this community, I sent them a letter of congratulations and an offer to help. Ron Fournier wrote back, expressing interest in our community. ( (Read the letter)Collapse )
What are the implications of this? This might give us a voice. A big voice, that may be heard by a large number of people. If you'd like to help out, please do the following:
1. Go to hotsoup.com and register. Watch here for future updates. 2. Stay active in this community. Post your ideas and discussions on what the effects of polarization are on the U.S., and how we can seal the rift. I've been lax myself, but pledge to be more vocal. 3. Point your like-minded friends to this community, and encourage them to contribute.
Overheard at work: "I'm a card carrying Republican and always have been, but I believe in supporting our president. When Clinton was in office I supported him because he was our president. There is too much division in American politics so I support all presidents because whether you agree or disagree, they are still your president."
Recently, two things have gone much better than I had expected. First, the early accounts of the Iraqi election look promising. Second, last night on The Daily Show, Jon Stewart asked the question "What if we were wrong about the elections and Bush was right?" This was one of a couple of acknowledgements by left leaning pundits and bloggers about the elections.
This is the first time in recent memory that I've heard a general "What if the other side isn't completely wrong" come from the Liberal side. This is progress towards reuniting our country. I hope that it will be followed by some conservatives making similar admissions. Or at the very least, I hope that the conservatives don't take this as an opportunity to call the liberals names and rub their noses in it.
Hi everybody! I’m writing my thesis. I’m looking for respondents. If you are Americans (you were born and grown up in United States, you are not immigrants) then you can help me a lot!!! Complete this questionnaire . It will take no more then 5 minutes. Thank you. I appreciate it!
After reading through the big poll results posted today to this community, please take this short follow-up poll. THIS IS THE LIBERAL AMERICAN'S VERSION OF THE POLL, FOR LIBERALS ONLY. CONSERVATIVES, PLEASE TAKE THE CONSERVATIVE VERSION.
Poll #405493Follow-up poll for LIBERALS
Open to: All, detailed results viewable to: All, participants: 25
Are you surprised over the opinions your fellow liberals had about conservatives?
After reading through the big poll results posted today to this community, please take this short follow-up poll. THIS IS THE CONSERVATIVE AMERICAN'S VERSION OF THE POLL, FOR CONSERVATIVES ONLY. LIBERALS, PLEASE TAKE THE LIBERAL VERSION.
Poll #405492Follow-up poll for CONSERVATIVES
Open to: All, detailed results viewable to: All, participants: 10
Are you surprised over the opinions your fellow conservatives had about liberals?
On December 12th at noon local time, every American citizen is called to converge on the 50 state capitals and Washington DC. to peacefully protest the 2004 election.
The 2004 election has culminated in the loss of integrity in our voting system. As citizens, it is our duty to stand up and demand the sanctity and security of our votes be returned to the ballot box. The 51 Capital "You Stole My Vote" March is our one opportunity to voice our insistence that all votes in the 2004 election be counted accurately and completely BEFORE state electors cast their votes for President and Vice President.
On December 12th, two groups will converge on every state capital in the country: citizens demanding our votes be counted accurately and fairly, and state electors preparing to cast their electoral votes the next day.
This protest will deliver a clear citizens' message to our fellow state electors: Do NOT cast your electoral vote until your state's election officials provide an accurate and complete vote count.
Holy jiblets! I've gotten over 200 survey reply comments in my e-mail in the last 24 hours. Although I think a fair number of them are from spin-off debates about people's comments.
I suppose it's totally futile to ask this, but please don't antagonize/criticize/make fun of/or otherwise flame people for posting what they currently believe. The point of all of this will be to see how close we are on our perceptions of ourselves and others.
If you find someone who's posted something that you feel is completely wrong, antagonizing them about it is NOT going to change their minds. Trust me - I've tried that tactic for 20 years now, and it hasn't worked yet.