I was in the Wall Street area on Friday and I saw a bunch of people gathered in a square with posters saying things like "Impeach Obama" and "Bring Back Hamiltonian Ways". I don’t know if it could be called a rally, but it was basically people part of a movement called the LaRouche Movement who were trying to spread the word around. Seeing such radical and extreme ideas may turn off many people and cause them to ignore it. I was thinking about the different political movements and the excerpt we read from Putnam’s Bowling Alone about political participation, so I decided to find out more about the movement. Everyone was more than happy to share and explain the movement. They call themselves the LaRouchePAC. The guy started out with explaining how Wall Street banking is all about speculation and the main purpose is to make money, which originated from the British economic system. He said the American way is to be more productive in order to "create" products and "create" jobs. Their goal is to eliminate Wall Street and speculative banking. They also want to reform education in order to create "geniuses". Meaning, for students to be able to reason things out using logic rather than referring to textbooks. They wanted to bring back the policies of FDR, such as the Glass-Steagall Act, which prohibited commercial banks from engaging in investment business. He told me that Obama is just continuing George Bush’s policies and is supporting Wall Street, rather than trying to eliminate it.
The ideas themselves may be attractive to many people, but the way they are presented makes them seem very extreme, which might turn many people away. As I approached the square where this was taking place, all I could see were posters with extreme sayings. As the guy was talking to me, he used many phrases that came off a bit odd, such as "we want to turn our children into geniuses" when talking about educational reform, and "Obama will start a nuclear war".
Some of the ideas presented seem perfectly reasonable, but the strong language, and the extreme statements may turn some people off. I was thinking if the way that information is presented to people may be the reason that so many are turned off and don’t participate.
What do you think is the best way to present information to people when you are trying to persuade them or share your beliefs?
What do you think about this movement?
This is a link to their website.