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Canvassing by Phone and Other Hang-ups

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26 October 2008: Canvassing by Phone and Other Hang-ups

"Hi, this is Marta Steele. I'm calling on behalf of Barack Obama and Joe Biden. Do we have your support? If so, please vote and be sure your friends do even if you have to drag them out by their heels. I appreciate your support and let's hope the good guy gets into the White House."-

     My voice is hoarse from making calls for more than an hour. In Philly they were most receptive; in Virginia, much less so, even where the area code is 703, that part of the state that borders the district and is supposed to be so liberal.

     I told the Philadelphians, one of whom offered to volunteer, that their votes were crucial even if they know their city always votes Democrat. The reason they should be sure to vote is that the rest of their state swings, though the unemployed workers are surely having second thoughts.

     I spoke with one Republican voter who is going to vote for Obama and asked me if he could vote for him even though he is a registered Republican. I said sure. There was one undecided voter who didn't have time to talk and I heard a child griping in the background. I hope the Obama people get back to her.

     I have phone banked one other time this year. I have freelanced on weekends but still should have joined earlier. The mechanics in Arlington, Virginia, are extraordinary. They have figured out that voters in the nearby suburb of Glebe are largely Democratic but tend not to vote at all. So there's a challenge.

     They are coming out in droves there to help. I figured that if I can phone from home there will be fewer distractions than in Arlington, which numbers among its constituents Terry McAuliffe and his huge mansion and guest house and--believe it--Susan Eisenhower.

    I know, this blog would have been much more interesting if I'd gone there--believe that too.

     I have to say, if McCain's running mate is a Josephine Six Pack, she should be more worried about those many other Joes who can hardly afford their six packs anymore.

     She isn't.

     If Bomb-Bomb and Bimbo win, or are selected anyway, my daughter plans to migrate to Europe and more power to her. A Darwinian masterpiece, she has friends all over the world.

     What will I do? Follow her? I've considered that, if she'll have me.

      I blogged a few weeks ago, in my Ballad of the Ballot, about all the roadblocks the McCain people have erected against the People's Choice, so I don't need to repeat myself. EVEN the mainstream press is reporting this in headlines. After two selections, they're catching on. Two at least, the one in 2006 having actually reflected the people's will in many instances.

     So am I a great seer for having climbed onto the Palast bandwagon in 2001? Wish I could have done more. What strikes me is how little credit he has received for his tremendous courage in speaking out at the end of October 2000. A pitiful few listened.

     I began to follow him around, residing at the time within New Jersey Transit (oh, grief) distance from Gotham City. I like to think that with all my writing I helped make him famous. I hope so. I published at the time at www.votermarch.org, whose owner, Lou Posner, was among those insightful activists who stood outside the Supreme Court building after the 2000 selection had occurred, protesting.

     Then I wrote for the distinguished site www.legitgov.org, mainly reporting on efforts to protest, if not end the Iraq war.

     Then I started my own site www.wordsunltd.com.

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http://www.wordsunltd.com; http://www.editingunltd.com

A jack of some trades, writing and editing among them, Marta Steele, an admitted and proud holdover from the late sixties, returned to activism ten years ago after first establishing her skills as a college [mostly adjunct] professor in three (more...)

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