“Driving change is always about attracting, never overpowering.”

Great exploration of the critical role of networks in driving social change.

Author Greg Satell was inspired by his first-hand experience living through Ukraine’s Orange Revolution to explore how such movements develop critical mass and effect lasting change. The result is “Cascades: How to Create a Movement that Drives Transformational Change.”

I’ll write more on this once finished reading, but one of Satell’s key tenets is that sustainable change is not effected by passionate partisans forcing their will upon skeptical opponents, but instead by influencing those others to the cause. Satell espouses a well-developed networks-based theory of how that occurs.

“That’s what really makes change happen. Not a strident call to the faithful, but the forging of common cause among diverse constituencies…. Linkages need to be built to higher threshold groups , and that can only be done by reaching out and learning bout the needs, desires and fears of others [the “Threshold Model” is explained in the book].”

“Cascades,” p. 121
Cascades

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Divisive partisanship is preventing us from accomplishing “jack.”

Americans’ propensity to quickly leap to negative prejudgements of ideological opponents poisons our ability to interact with the teammates we need to advance our personal and national goals.

We’re going to fix that.

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Thoughts from across the aisle...

“A family from Mexico who arrived here this morning, legally, has as much right to the American dream as the direct descendants of the founding fathers. … when the blood of the sons of immigrants and the grandsons of slaves fell on foreign fields, it was American blood. In it you could not read the ethnic particulars of the soldier who died next to you. He was an American. And when I think of how we learned this lesson, I wonder [how] we could have unlearned it.”

— Bob Dole, 11-year Senate Majority Leader (GOP), WW2 purple heart veteran