A Citizen's Guide to Politics in America: How the System Works and How to Work the System

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M.E. Sharpe, Jun 15, 2000 - Political Science
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This book is an antidote for civic apathy and disillusionment. It takes the reader step-by-step through the process of successful action for change--from the germ of an idea to finding allies, getting the word out, and building the critical mass of people, energy, and support to effect the desired result.
 

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Contents

A Day in the Life of a Lobbyist
153
Information and Lobbying
160
Lobbying the Legislature
162
Yes Even the President
170
Influencing Corporate and Institutional Behavior
176
Money Politics and Lobbying
182
Grassroots Mobilization
184
Identifying the Grassroots in Your Own Backyard
188

The Life Cycle of an Issue
20
Issue Dynamics
23
Issues and Interest Groups
28
The InterestGroup Explosion
30
Why Members Join Interest Groups
32
How Interest Groups Influence Policy
38
Targets of Opportunity Issue Arenas
45
Places to Go and People to Persuade
46
Our Uneasy Federal System
50
Implementing the Law
59
Taking the Policy Initiative
63
Understanding and Influencing Public Opinion
67
Taking the Publics Pulse
69
Exploring the Territory
74
Following the Leader?
81
Information and Persuasion
83
Using Creativity and Imagination to Communicate Information
91
Sources and Reliability of Information
96
Buying Science
98
Striking a Balance Between Costs and Benefits
100
Media Advocacy
105
Shaping the News Coverage
110
Buying the Medias Attention
121
Developing a Media Message
126
Finding Strength in Numbers Building and Managing Coalitions
133
Issue Coalitions
134
Why Organizations Join Coalitions
139
Membership
140
The Power of Unlikely Alliances
142
Governance
144
Persuading Decision Makers
151
Mobilizing Your Grassroots
190
Mobilizing the Grass Tops
196
Marketing the Issue to the Public
197
Potemkin Interest Groups
207
Philanthropy and Grassroots
212
Issue Advocacy and the Internet
215
Internet Tools of the Issue Advocates Trade
216
Websites
219
Grassroots Mobilization
224
Flash Campaigns
225
Learning from Landmines
227
ELobbying
229
Keys to Effective Internet Advocacy
231
Initiatives and Referenda The Public Takes Charge
235
What Goes Around Comes Around
237
The Initiative Process
238
Winning While Losing
244
Even the Public Doesnt Have All the Answers
245
Putting It All Together Guns in America
250
Gun Control Is Contested in Every Possible Forum
260
Influencing Congress
266
Public Opinion and the Future of Gun Control
269
Issues and Advocacy Strategies for the TwentyFirst Century
271
Peering into the Future
272
Issues for the Next Century
274
Emerging Advocacy Strategies
282
The Search for Lasting Solutions
286
Notes
301
Bibliography
321
Index
327
Copyright

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