GRM: Government Relationship Management

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GRM First Principles

We're building Government Relationship Management, NOT Politician Reelection Management. (More at: The Tragedy of the Netroots.) Our purpose is: to support citizen-activated policy development. Our purpose is not: to elect the same kinds of politicians using new techniques.

Proper GRM tools will support citizen-led policy development and voter-based policy enforcement in the current legislative session. Politics is used only to concentrate the lawmakers' minds to achieve current goals. Firing lawmakers and hiring new ones will be no harder or unusual than a manager shaking up the pitching staff. Proper GRM tools will not depend on hospitable or electing "our" politicians and staffs. Proper GRM tools will be so effective that most politicians will comply with "GRM Voting Blocs".

A "GRM Voting Bloc" is a critical mass of certified constituents in a jurisdiction who:

  1. Share an actionable commitment to manage their representative's votes in committee and on the floor.
  2. Base their commitments on Issues, not personality.
  3. Are pledged to vote their commitments:
  • In the next party primary.
  • In the next general election.
  • Know why both votes matter.
  • Recruit their networks to pledge and vote with them.
  • Are viewed by a representative's staff as an existential threat or opportunity.

Proper GRM tools provide voters with a smooth, satisfying and direct work flow with tangible consequences for lawmakers' careers.

GRM structures must provide the best and cheapest place for savvy politicians to win votes.

An Easy Problem that looks Hard

Think about it: The essential transaction of American democracy is to re-hire or replace our representatives. No politician feels 100% safe in his/her seat. This is big: No other American power structure is as fragile. Currently, politicians' careers depend on voters continuing to not show up. They are whistling past the political graveyard of exploding collaboration, networking and engagement tools. American corporations would never expose themselves to such accountability. The political equation can change overnight, as these simple affordances are rolled out simultaneously to 585 sites:

  • 435 Congressional districts
  • 100 Senate seats
  • 50 states
  • Sites built, supported and maintained by Phase2 and Acquia Inc., the folks who re-engineered and host whitehouse.gov.

Phase2 will build the first 585 social networking sites --

  • Based on Acquia's Drupal Commons distribution
  • Extended by Phase2's GRM Advokit advocacy layer
  • Enterprise-level hosting for the 585 sites provided by Acquia Inc. on the RackSpace Cloud.

Noteworthy: A simultaneous deployment in places where we have established sleeper cells:

  • US
  • UK
  • Australia
  • Canada
  • Netherlands
  • Belgium
  • Ireland

The cable channels will like this story. It's equally compelling on both sides of the aisles.

Note: The UK's Liam Maxwell's US speaking tour is scheduled for 8/28-9/2/2010.

Voters have all the money and votes and therefore all the power. Voter's current impotence is simply a function of arcane legacy systems and non-recreational voting. GRM work flows will support "Recreational Vetting & Voting". Recreational Vetting & Voting - Fantasy Government League for Friends & Neighbors.

A new, highly entertaining mental and visceral game of judging, rating, discussing and firing/hiring lawmakers.

We employ the well-understood principles of a Fantasy Sports League. We decide what outcome our GRM Voting Bloc wants from the current lawmaking season. We dissect and direct lawmakers' actions in hearings and their votes in committees, subcommittees and on the floor of Congress. We learn who's on staff and enlist their help in conforming action on the Hill with our collaborative vision.

Managing a Congressional Hearing

Few lobbyists will guarantee that a particular line of questioning will be raised by a representative in a hearing. However, a GRM Voting Bloc can almost guarantee it. The GRM Voting Bloc supports a policy definition process. The process develops three desired elements that are fact-based rather than ideological:

  • Lead question.
  • Follow-up question.
  • Exhibit to be entered into the record.

Following their voters' deliberations, few politicians would refuse to introduce the three elements.

Once part of the record, the key issue becomes easier to promote and prevail with.