Netroots Rising

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Book: Netroots Rising. How a citizen army of bloggers and online activists is changing American politics. by Lowell Feld and Nate Wilcox. 2008



"…it is worth praising the way in which the authors of Netroots Rising have offered a dramatic and evocative account of recent triumphs achieved by net-based organisations, particularly the web-based draft movement to elect Democrat Jim Webb Senator of Virginia in 2006. Recalling very recent history, the bloggers masterfully weave together memories of the dramatic and improbable victory Webb won against wealthy businessman Harris Miller in the Democratic primary, and subsequent ejection of republican George Allen, detailing precisely through a wide variety of emails, newspaper articles and face-to-face interviews the spin, grassroots organisation and raw energy that contributed to the campaign that proved the difference in getting a majority in the House of Senate. These are coupled with superb depictions of those involved in the 2006 election and how they react to immense political changes that are exceptional in their own right. Among their portraits of the Old Dominion’s leading politicos, Feld and Wilcox make us appreciate the charismatic and passionate Webb as he hoarsely belts out message of progressive change as the campaign enters its final stretch, and loath his boorish republican rival as he oafishly struggles to understand how his viral slurring of one of Webb’s Indian-American volunteers finally comes to kill off his career and embryonic dreams of the White House. In their characterisations of many of the political engaged citizens who get involved with his candidate’s campaign, the authors demand an admiration those such as S R. Sidarth, who stand tall in the face of being dubbed not part of ‘the real Virginia’ by Allen and others like him. And in doing so once again, they encourage the reader to appreciate fully the grassroots activism of countless progressive Americans, their drive to democratise the process of selecting those that represent them and prize it away from the hands of corporate politics in their country." (

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