Being Able to Get Your Message Out and Importance of Financial Independence – Lessons from Progressive Ballot Reformers (Part Four)

By: Sunday January 9, 2011 4:00 pm

Politics in a democracy is about changing minds, and to change minds you need to get your message to the people you hope to persuade. Reformist groups throughout history have often run into opposition from the established mainstream media, which tends to be supportive of the current status quo structure. Being able to speak directly to supporters and the population as a whole has been critical to independent political movements. This is something the leadership of the Nonpartisan League strongly understood and why one of their first acts was to create their own paper.


Grow the Base, Strengthen the Base: Lessons from the CCF, Part Three

By: Monday June 21, 2010 4:20 pm

The Cooperative Commonwealth Federation was a political party in Canada that formed during the Great Depression. Most of its support came from the rural cooperative movement among farmers. Cooperative members made up a large part of its voters, and many of its leaders had held elected posts in cooperatives. Organized labor was another important part of its base of support. So, when the CCF took control of the provincial government of Saskatchewan in 1944, it passed legislation to increase the power and membership of the organization that made up its base of support.

Choose Allies Who Won’t Abandon You for the Trappings of Power: Lessons from the CCF, Part Two

By: Sunday June 20, 2010 8:30 am

When trying to change the power structure, it is crucial to choose political candidates and organizations truly dedicated to your goals. The trappings of power are very enticing. An outsider candidate, once elected, might think it’s more rewarding to compromise with the current power structure for modest change, and gain a personal place in the hierarchy, than fight doggedly for several years for real reform.

How to Turn Local Groups into Incubators of Progressive Candidates: Lessons from the CCF, Part One

By: Saturday June 19, 2010 11:00 am

The Cooperative Commonwealth Federation (CCF) was a left-wing political party that emerged in rural western Canada during the Great Depression. The party won control of Saskatchewan’s provincial government in the 1940s. While in power, the CCF created the government-run single-payer health insurance system, which was soon adopted nationwide. The CCF is the source of Canada’s universal health-care system.

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