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MoveOn's 50 Ways to Love Your Country: How to Find Your Political Voice and Become a Catalyst for Change Paperback – March, 2004

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

It's somewhat rare to see an entire grassroots political organization listed as the author of a book but it's perfectly in keeping with the spirit of both MoveOn.org and this handbook on civic activism authored by some of the group's members. It features 50 short chapters (one or two pages each in most cases) authored by non-celebrities from all walks of life who took it upon themselves to change the world. Some of the ideas are ambitious, as in the case of a liberal-minded Texan who decided the best way to make his views known was to run against Republican stalwart Tom DeLay in the GOP primary. Others are much simpler: write a letter to the editor, sign a petition, or go to a rally. But even in those seemingly obvious tactics, there are interesting techniques offered that could make a simple act a much more effective one. Included in each tip are bullet-pointed tips from MoveOn organizers to help the reader translate the idea into real action. While MoveOn is certainly not the first group to suggest simple steps to change the world, this volume scores points for it's concise editing and populist authorship. It's not a book to curl up with in front of the fire, it's meant to be thrown into a backpack or purse on the way to the next protest, campaign rally, or discussion group. The slant, like the organization itself, is a liberal one but the writers generally stop short of expanding on their political beliefs, choosing instead to focus on what those beliefs inspired them to do with their time and energy. Brief interstitial essays by notables such as Al Gore and Nancy Pelosi introduce sections of the book, providing expert gravity without detracting from the common person message. --John Moe

From Publishers Weekly

Fifty members of the online activist group MoveOn.org provide tips on how to take political action in this inspiring audiobook, which is impressive not only because of the breadth of its suggestions, but also because 42 of the 50 contributors lend their own voices to the recording. Although this makes for an uneven listening experience, as not all of the contributors possess velvet voices, it drives home the audiobook's message: that people of all ages, races and income levels can make a difference. The essays—which cover everything from starting an online petition and hosting a political salon to writing letters to congress and organizing a political book club—each end with a set of "action tips" summarizing the steps the writer took in achieving his/her goals. The most useful component of this audiobook, however, may be its enhanced CD features. Those with access to a computer can browse these "action tips" and link directly to any Web sites mentioned in the material.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Product Details

  • Series: Inner Ocean Action Guide
  • Paperback: 144 pages
  • Publisher: New World Library; English Language edition (March 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 193072229X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1930722293
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.4 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (84 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,694,967 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

126 of 130 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 29, 2004
Format: Paperback
I think everyoen from all parts of the political spectrum will enjoy this book. As a lifelong Republican I have to say that people here denegrating this book haven't read it at all. It is a very good illumination of how curruption and failure to participate have undermined American democracy.
Indeed our local school board place this book on the required reading list at our high school...and we are a Republican town!
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173 of 182 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 29, 2004
Format: Paperback
If you are a Republican like me, don't pass on this book just because it is from MoveOn!! An unbiased look at democracy and the difference we all can make, it's a MUST READ for anyone who wants to get more involved in the political process. I rather doubt the "one star" ratings even took the time to look at the book. Get past your bias and pick up this book!!!
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110 of 115 people found the following review helpful By Cynthia K. Parker on March 25, 2004
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The point is that we live in a country where our voice, our vote, COUNTS. Whether you are pro or anti-choice, whether you are pro or anti Bush, whether you are Democrat or Republican, this book details ways to participate in our democratic process. Speaking out, voting, protesting, petitioning, writing letters to your editor, whatever! These are the privileges of a free society, and this book is all about ways to exercise our freedoms.
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207 of 222 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 29, 2004
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
As a conservative, I was skeptical -- to say the least -- about a book on "Democracy" from MoveOn.org.
While I may not agree with the politics of most of the authors, I have to say that reading the individual stories was eye opening to me in the sense of seeing what a difference one person can make in our gridlocked political arena.
I'm so sick of our American government and politics being deadened and directed by extreme, cynical career elites and marketers of both parties. This book offers a rare contemporary glimpse of genuine hope in America for re-establishing our democracy "for the people" -- regardless of what party you belong to.
The stories are also very concrete, factual, and short -- so you can learn a lot.
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105 of 111 people found the following review helpful By Bryan Carey VINE VOICE on April 22, 2004
Format: Paperback
Founded a few years ago as a response to the effort to impeach Bill Clinton, MoveOn.org is a liberal activist group that maintains a strong on- line presence and provides advice to those who want to get involved in the political process and work for change. This book- the first one published by the organization- is comprised of a collection of articles submitted by MoveOn members, explaining how they got involved and how they succeeded (and sometimes failed) in making a difference.
The book includes fifty different stories divided into five areas: connecting through the internet, exercising one's privilege to vote, working with the media, getting involved personally, and getting involved politically. The articles themselves are short and to the point, ranging in length from one to three pages each. MoveOn.org members do not waste time and/or space in this book. They quickly explain what they did and how they did it.
Some of the stories presented in this book are interesting and creative, showing some surprising ways to help work for political change. Others are more mundane and ordinary, and don't really explain anything new and exciting. The editors of this book decided on this set of fifty stories based on inspiration, ease of application to anyone, creativity, etc. I found that some of the stories were actually pretty good, while others (like attending a rally) were pretty dull and didn't really inspire me much at all.
To help readers gain a better understanding about what an activist should do, each story includes a gray- shaded area with additional "MoveOn tips"- a bulleted list of ideas to take with you on your way to your next activist activity.
Read more ›
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97 of 102 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 25, 2004
Format: Paperback
This is a book that teaches citizens how to participate in our democracy. Those who are actively trying to discredit moveon are literally trying to actively discredit the millions of individuals who are channeling their efforts through it.
This is a book for anyone wanting to take action -- whether you are Democrat or Republican. It teaches you to vote, to organize people, to sign petitions, to write letters, to support clean elections and to organize house parties in support of candidates and issues.
In short, it's a guide to taking political action and maximizing your impact as you participate in our American Democracy.
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82 of 87 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 25, 2004
Format: Paperback
MoveOn's 50 Ways to Love Your Country is based on the model that MoveOn.org uses: connect people with similar values and let them do the rest.
The book isn't dogmatic, negative, or preachy. It's a collection of stories written by folks just like you. Some are big, some are small. But all of them invite you to take what you want from the experiences of progressives all over the nation.
This collection is especially valuable to that population which shares progressive values but doesn't identify with the term "activist." The stories included demonstrate that even the most politically inactive can do their part to support issues that they care about.
Critics of the left would do well to garner some advice from this book before condemning it. But then again, maybe they shouldn't.
Way to go, MoveOn!
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