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Sender: David Nevins
Subject: Questions asked by Debilyn Molineaux
Date: Thu, Aug 14, 2014
Msg: 101073

In response to the three questions asked by Debilyn Molineaux, Managing PartnerLiving Room Conversations, please note my thoughts below: THE QUESTION- HOW DO YOU EXPLAIN THE TRANSPARTISANWAY/DYNAMIC OR WHATEVER NOUN YOU USE: I believe the transpartisan dynamic should be a grassroots political movement based on the concept of bridging partisan divides and finding a higher ground. The dynamic should focused on uniting the many individuals and organizations that share the believe in governance based on civil political discourse and critical thinking.

It is my hope that a structure can be brought to the transpartisan dynamic that is more than just an intellectual sharing of ideas, but instead results in the creation of an organizational framework that will serve as the conceptual plan for a powerful national political movement.


I am deeply involved with No Labels, a bi-partisan/transpartisan organization that is making major progress in the area of bringing members of Congress from both sides of the aisle together to dialogue, find compromises, and even agree on legislation to move our country forward. (No Labels currently has 94 members of Congress who are called Problem Solvers, 47 Democrats and 47 Republicans who meet regularly in attempt to bridge the partisan divide)

I believe the No Labels "Problem Solving" approach to governance is a term that can be used to describe the mission of the transpartisan movement.

This Problem Solving approach to governance I believe must be based on deductive reasoning. This means searching for solutions based on reason, logic and inquiry wherein a conclusion follows from a set of premises; not the other way around. This is not inconsistent with the understanding the core beliefs and principles are an essential component of the political process. So often today, emotions take over, preventing real problem solving. Emotions based on fear, prejudice, and an unwillingness to listen to people with different viewpoints, infects the political process with uncivil language and "a Priori" reasoning process designed to manipulate the data in order to prove one's own bias and predetermined conclusions. This "belief bias" results in a tendency to either blindly endorse or discard information regardless of its potential merit.

The transpartisan movement must shift the debate away from the question of whether government should be bigger or smaller, to a debate that will transcend both political parties. Influential and renowned management theorist Peter Drucker said it well when he said that government this century will have to transcend both groups:

The mega-state that this century built is not working. It has not delivered. But its successor cannot be "small government." There are far too many tasks, domestically and internationally. And the success cannot simply be bigger government. We need effective government -- and that is what the voters are clamoring for, and that I believe is transpartisanship.


Most importantly I believe the dynamic must become a grassroots political movement as opposed to just being an intellectual exercise. For real change to happen we need thinkers who are also doers. We must have the courage move ahead with political action rather then just write about it.

We must focus on coming a political grassroots movement with structure and substance.

Through my involvement with No Labels, I have come to know the work of many like-minded organizations throughout the country that share common principles but do not work together. While I believe a vast majority of Americans are fed up with politics as it presently exists, I also believe no organization to date has been successful in rallying the American public to demand a change from the current dysfunctional process of governance.

Thus, I believe we must focus on uniting the many individuals and organizations who share the same basic principles. I believe that if we work together we can find new avenues to advance our political objectives. It is time for those who are committed to bridging partisan divides and finding a higher ground, take the next step in creating a grassroots movement with real political clout.

As a part of this process we need to develop a substantive political platform defining the basic principles and operational format of a bi-partisan/transpartisan national political movement.

Essentially what is needed is a Transpartisan Bill of Rights that can be easily understood by the citizenry of this country, and is combined with calls to action that result in implementation. The details of the Transpartisan Bill of Rights is something I have worked on and a subject for another time.

I believe that with the help of enough ordinary citizens, from across this great land, this movement can become the vehicle through which our Founding Fathers' shared vision as to the nature, the climate and the ethics of debate will become a reality.

I believe the transpartisan political movement can ultimately change the equation of what the American people expect of, and are willing to accept from, there elected officials. With enough grassroots support and with the structure of a political party we can hold members of Congress accountable to solutions oriented governance. The incentives can be changed.

Many suggest that the system can never change and that this task of creating a transpartisan national political movement is just a waste of time. I say that our Founding Fathers were considered to be idealists by some, and that the enduring Constitution they designed still endures 200 plus years later. We can, and must, build upon their brilliant and exemplary framework to finish what they collectively intended but never managed to complete. We must define and implement a process of governance in our country built upon civil discourse and critical thinking.

David L. Nevins.


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