As promised, here's the updated version of my Booster Plan brainstorm/essay.The Booster Plan: One way to make a good first impression in the chosen state.
If current projections are accurate, we should hit the 5,000 member mark around summer or autumn of 2003. Free State selection is close at hand.
Much of our energy is going into this selection process. But the minute we make the choice an even greater challenge will be loosed upon us, that of earning support within the chosen state. The first days, even the first hours after FS selection may be critical. They will mark the moment when many FS residents first hear of us, and we won't get a second chance to make that first impression.
We need a plan to help ensure the impression is a decent one...a plan *and* the means to carry it out.
For the sake of discussion, let's assume that it's July 15 and we've just picked current front runner Wyoming. Here's what we could do during that first week to maximize the number of Wyoming residents who see this as good news. 1) Announce and carry out a "made-in-Wyoming" campaign.
Its purpose would be to get Porcupines to buy Wyoming-made goods and services as much as practical. This can be done long before any of us move. But we must make it as easy as possible.
One option might be to set up a sort of low-budget, Amazon.com-type site that sells only goods from Wyoming. Another option would be to support an existing site inside the state that already directs folks to Wyoming-made products. For now I haven't found such a site, but if you know of one please post the link to our forum (see below). 2) Initiate - or support - some kind of effort to help recruit businesses to Wyoming.
WyoRancher, an FSP participant from Wyoming, has suggested it would be even better if Free Staters and their supporters purchased for-sale business that are already there.3) Initiate or join some kind of effort to support Wyoming in her current squabbles with the Feds.
These steps would benefit from consultation with the state's current residents and liberty-friendly institutions. In fact, it might be best to defer to them. Let them be the ones who guide us toward the realization of each step. Let them keep us more or less in harmony with the interests of folks who are already lucky enough to live there.
In theory, at least, taking the actions above might allow us to turn our temporary distance from Wyoming into an advantage both for us and for current residents. We might be able to boost the state's economy a bit, creating jobs without initially taking up any ourselves. We could spot business recruitment possibilities that might go unnoticed by those inside the state. And, unlike current WY residents, we would be in physical proximity to any power-grabbing out-of-state politicos who are messing with the freedoms of her residents. Long as we're stuck "outside" maybe we could raise a ruckus at the local offices of Wyoming's favorite villains!
But I use the words "in theory" for a reason. Taking this from plan to execution is the hard part, and we are not yet up to the challenge. We need a better-mobilized, better-organized volunteer base, both to make it happen and to make sure the state's residents *know* it happened.
So how do we do that? I don't have half the answers. But I've done one thing I hope will help, not just with the Booster idea but with other FSP projects. I've set up a message board thread at http://forum.freestateproject.org/index.php?board=3;action=display;threadid=1471
where folks like *you* can let us know you are a potential volunteer and what kinds of bite-sized projects you might enjoy volunteering for.
With dedication and humility we can prove ourselves to be what we are:
A loyal community of future Wyomingites
Eager to embrace the state's traditions and values
Fiercely dedicated to the culture of freedom she personifies
If you would like to discuss this article with its author or with other Porcupines, drop by the Booster thread on our web forum at http://forum.freestateproject.org/index.php?board=4;action=display;threadid=1473;start=0