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Who Will be the Neil Armstrong of the TDG?

You all know who Neil Armstrong is, right? Now here’s the next question: Who was the second man to walk on the Moon? You probably know that answer too: Buzz Aldrin.

One more question: Who was third? Now some of you are going to drop out of the realm of correct answers. Twelve Americans walked on the moon — and very few Americans can name any of the 10 after Armstrong and Aldrin. These two names will live long in history. As for the Apollo 12, 14, 15, 16, and 17 moon walkers; well, they are occupying brain cells of only the hard-core NASA fans. Being first in history is being famous.

A couple of weeks ago, I had a TDG fan who told me that he was going to talk to some neighbors about the TDG.

“Great,” I thought, “First such response since 2014.” I had a similar TDG fan at that time. We exchanged about 10 emails.

That 2014 fellow did not follow through. I’m not sure why. Maybe he lost interest. Maybe he couldn’t find interest with his neighbors. For sure, the TDG did not start in Cobb County, Georgia in 2014.

But as I was sending my encouraging response back to the 2021 fellow, I thought, “He could be the Neil Armstrong of the TDG. He and his neighbors will be looked as pioneers in political change. His community will be looked on as where the TDG started in the USA.” That thought was the inspiration of this article.

While getting famous in this way sounds like a poor motivation to start a TDG, history will still want to record the firsts.

Neil Armstrong had to undergo rigorous training to reach his fame: engineering school, military pilot, and astronaut. There were many 14-hour workdays for him to gain the skills to accomplish his moon walk. He sacrificed a lot.

The TDG is not so demanding. Here are the steps:

1) Read the TDG book. It will take about three hours.

2) If you like the TDG concept and believe it has some chance of success, then decide to become an early TDG builder.

3) Gather three or more neighbors to help you build your local TDG constitution. In my first TDG novel, there is a “first local constitution” example which you can use. Make small changes to suit your neighborhood. Or you can start with a totally new kind of constitution.

4) Hold your first election according to the rules of your local TDG constitution.

5) If you are not elected, try to rationalize your loss as there are even better people than you to build this TDG. Stay connected with this TDG for it might still have good use for your service later. And your annual vote is so important for this TDG to work well.

6) If you are elected, learn how to work with your fellow representatives with the process of consultation. Try not to force your opinion as the “only way.”

7) Stay away from all political issues. The TDG, at this stage, will not be able to resolve any of them. You can still have opinions on these issues; just keep them out of the TDG.

8) Instead, work toward increasing membership of your local TDG. Then educate the new members of the TDG principles so they cast a wise vote next election.

9) You can also help adjacent neighborhoods set up their TDG.

10) Make amendments to your constitution as you observe how it works with your community. The TDG will be a time of great democratic experimentation.

Activities 6 to 10 may seem mundane tasks. But these tasks are the practice sessions for this new kind of governance. When the new ways are ingrained into the new culture, the TDG will be ready for resolving political issues.

Unlike NASA astronauts, early TDG builders need not give up their current lifestyle for this cause. Occupations, family time, community time, hobbies, and recreation need not be sacrificed. The early TDG builders need only about 10 hours a month to get this social/political movement started. Only a little time management is required.

The 2021 fellow has not yet got back to me about the meeting with his neighbors. He might still become the Neil Armstrong of USA’s TDG. Or maybe it could be you.

But fame is not important. What matters is how those 10 hours a month you sacrifice today make a better world 20 years from now. You might not make the TDG history books, but your grandchildren and great-grandchildren will look in awe at how you were one of the few to buck the trend that kept the current, broken system in place. They will be thankful that current system has become history.

It’s your choice! Ten hours a month!

Published on Medium 2021

Dave Volek is a Shmuck

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