One thing that gets me really excited is when someone demonstrates how leadership can happen in the age of the Internet. I don’t know anyone who has illuminated this better than my friend, Larry Lessig. Rootstrikers is a case in point. Day after day I am blown away by Rootstrikers. It’s a political jam session. The Rootstrikers crew continually experiments with new ways to engage and empower and position people to contest for power. The organization’s reach sometimes exceeds its grasp. But but that is part of what makes it so cool.
Rootstrikers reminds me of what Silicon Valley was like in the early days of the personal computer revolution when it was much more heavily influenced by unconventional rebels who wanted to mount a frontal strike on our dominant culture, wanted to use technology to rock the boat, to unmask inequities, and model new ways of being that are more fair, inclusive and constructive.
Lessig and the Rootstrikers team are building a movement with that same rebellious flavor; an organization teaming with insanely great, amazing leaders of all stripes, backgrounds, shapes, sizes, pet peeves, obsessions, and furious dedications, including oftentimes plain rock ribbed old-fashioned patriots Americans who want to leave this country better than they found it. What’s more, Larry is doing all this in the most impressive way possible; he’s giving us a taste of what can happen when leaders respect and elevate others. It’s the best type of leadership: the conscious construction of a new operating system for social change where the responsibility to lead is distributed among anyone willing to step up. That’s such a fresh, welcome departure from the old, traditional model of leadership which is usually focused on some Big Daddy figure who eventually lets everyone down when she/he can’t deliver what only a well-organized social movement can accomplish. Sometimes when something important is happening people miss out because no one told them. We sometimes miss the best parties because no one invited us, or we did not know what was happening right down the block. That’s why I want to take a moment right now, right here, as I relaunch my personal blog, to invite everyone reading this to join Rootstrikers. We are determined to wrestle the soul of our country back from those who’ve bought and sold it on the cheap. It is going to be one hell of a fight. Won’t you join us?