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The meme, the libertymovement, the tipping point & what it means to the campaign strategy

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An exploratory rant for applying 'Diffusion of innovations' to the 2012 electioncycle.

1. The fight for the meme
Ron Paul's message can be seen as a meme. According to wikipedia, a meme (play /ˈmiːm/[1]) is "an idea, behavior or style that spreads from person to person within a culture."[2] A meme acts as a unit for carrying cultural ideas, symbols or practices, which can be transmitted from one mind to another through writing, speech, gestures, rituals or other imitable phenomena.

And this is why it the Paul campaign is also called 'The Revolution', because it is a different meme that is put foreward.
It is a breach with the meme of socialistic big government nannystate living, which is the meme we are fighting against. Against the idea that big government is needed, that the Fed is needed, etc.
We want the meme of life, liberty and property to grow to be the most influencial meme.

2. The tipping point
The tipping point has been investigated a lot already and there is a mark at about 16%. The reasoning behind having a tipping point is, it reflects the way people think and make judgements. People on one side of the 16%-mark think different then the people of the other side. Nothing about good or bad, just different. And it appears to be this 16%. That is a natural ceiling that has to be breached.

And we went through that ceiling a few times, already which prooves there is a big momentum for us right now. But it also shows that the way the message is being put foreward has to be altered a bit. It should be tweaked in a way that the new target audience understands and accepts it. One of which is making a case that RP is electable and for that I think he has to become more defiant (but I guess this part is open for debat).

Changing a meme is hard. It takes time and dedication and any growth this movement makes due to this electoral process is a win. That's why dr Paul always wins. And I really hope dr Paul wins this electioncycle.
This can only be done because of the meme suddenly going exponential, and this might just happen. We have reached the tipping point of 16% so all is possible. And time will tell if we make it this election or next election. The more effort is made, the bigger the odds it will happen this election cycle.

3. Applying the tipping point to the Ron Paul libertymovement
Now it becomes interesting. If one says that the 2007 election started with the innovators (technologists), in the last 4 years we got the early adopters (visionaries) in. This means we have now reached the 16% chasm. And now we need to get the pragmatics in to get the early majority. And that it is all we need to get to win this republican election. Because with them we got 50% of the Republican votes.

And when Paul goes head to head against Obama, then the conservatives (late majority) will join in, as will the sceptics (late mass) from the Republican side. And from the independent and democratic side we will get the innovators as well as a big portion of the early adopters and you see them voting RP already.

But let's explore the first 16% and the other 84% a bit more.

3.1 The the first 16% of Republican voters
Having the first 16% means you have most of the people who behave sceptic (in a positive way) and want to get information and decide for themselves what the outcome should be: they want to make up their own mind. This is what these people are like and for them it makes a lot of sense to accept Ron Paul. These are also the people who want to educate themselves. And this is perfectly in line with the people who go on the internet and do research themselves. So it really fits the profile.
One could also call this group pro-active (and the other re-active) in behaviour concerning the topic of politics. The one group in search of information and the other group wanting to get information presented to them. This happens for whatever reason: their personal choice can be thousandfold. Maybe they are very pro-active in other areas of their lives.

So now it's time to look more into the next group.

3.2 The early majority
The early majority has another set of personal wishes. One of them being less motivated to do a lot of research themselves. This results in 3 ways of them making their descission.

3.2.1 The early majority - social contacts
The first is being in contact with the first 16%. This helps a lot. They look at what their peers are doing and go along because they trust them. The do have a lot of social contacts and are willing to listen to their network (whether it be friends, family, neighbours). They are open minded and are willing to try something new, which has already proved itself (to others).

3.2.2 The early majority - social proof
The second is social proof. This one is very similar to the first, but with the difference that this time you don't really know eachother. So this is more the public sphere where they get their information from: say the tv, internet, the street outside, etc. They are open minded and are willing to try something new, which has already proved itself (to others).

Let me show you what social proof is by presenting to you a dancing equivalent of Ron Paul, dancing to the beat of "Unstoppable" (which we are!). With Derek Sivers from TED talks who explains it:

Social proof is a term used by Cialdini from his book Influence. I can highly recommend that book if you want to learn about influence. In text I think I can keep it short by giving the link to wikipedia.

3.2.3 The early majority - limited choice
The third is limited choice. Since they don't want to do the research for themselves, this group is less interested in all the explanatory rants. They want to go to the core of the problem directly and get 2 or 3 solutions to pick from. So this is what needs to presented to this group. You could call it "user experience" and "convienence" dominate instead of te technical qualities. These are in politics also known as "soundbites".

4. Crossing the chasm
When we enter the area (or era) of social proof, we should be leaving the area (or era) of being loony. You will notice it in the media, that they stop naming RP supporters as hackers, paulbots, loonies, fringe, etc. And if you ask me, we have witnessed our movement passing that point in the last 2 months. Ron Paul and his supporters aren't being laughed at anymore.
We have seen votes of 20%+ which puts us well into the early majority area. This takes away the fear for those who want to belong to the group, which are the 84% of the people. This means that more and more endorsements from public figures will be seen.

Next to starting to becoming more accepted by the big crowd, it also means that the tone of the message should be changed to accomodate the new voters to join in, as already described in chapter 3.

But let me remind you, that this is a political fight and not just an ordinary new technology. There are forces out there that want to put Dr Paul back into the chasm, so that will continue even if we are approaching the 50% mark. Still, this fact of life should not lead us away from our path.

5. To put it in context of Ron Paul and what it should mean to his campaign
What is as important though, is that it shows that the tactic to persuad people can/has to be changed at this point. We are now convincing people who have other priorities then the first 16%. Nothing said about good or bad, just different. And the group that can be convinced now is the group that just has to see that they are joining the right side, the side where all the good action will be in the years to come. We are the winning side, and this is what should be communicated. This should be added to the regular education ofcourse. This movement will only grow bigger now.
- be more defiant, show you are the man! the leader that we have been waiting for
- for every 60 seconds it now is 50sec explenation and 10sec solution, that should be 20sec explenation and 40 sec solution
- less is more, sometimes when the answer is given, no more explenation is needed. Let the solution speak for itself.
- when debating and they avoid a question, ask again the same question. like: how do you want to pay for it? but where do you get the money from? borrowing? what cut? will you balance the budget or will you increase the debts?
- attack the other candidates with the constitution. Will they stick to the constitution? Because there is a lot in the constitution that all the other candidates are opposing. So they are lying right now or will they lie when they take the oath of office with their hand on the bible?

6. What it means to the Grassroots
Some examples:
- talk to the people you know (social contact/social proof)
- take their way of thinking and making descessions as a reference, instead of your own way of thinking (limited choice)
- if you go door-to-door do it with as many people as possible and make the size of your group visable to those who open the door (social proof)
- go signwaving with as much people as possible (social proof)
& show your selfesteem and ask where do the other candidates get the money to pay for all of it? And let the person answer this question, there is no answer.

We are Unstoppable!
Original discussion is a thread about a Tipping point.


  1. millercards's Avatar
    Well written, good job.

    Your last bit there.... sign-waving = social proof.... is something that I wasn't able to put into words.

    We are Ron Paul's media. We have to get his name out there in as many ways as possible.

    AND we need to become Delegates!