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Help Keep the BlueBroward Calendar Up to Date

Just a reminder that the best way to make sure that your favorite club or campaign’s events are posted to the Calendar is to do it yourself. I’m strongly encouraging self-service because as the election gets closer, it’s tough for me to keep up with all the requests for listings coming via email.

Any registered member of the website can post events, and they will appear immediately on the Calendar. I reserve the right to edit or delete listings that are not appropriate (we don’t need to be promoting meetings of the George W. Bush Fan Club), but this has rarely been a problem.

Timing is important. This 2-week snapshot of events goes out by email every Sunday morning, so if you wait until Sunday afternoon to post an event that’s happening on Tuesday, you’ve missed out. Between now and the election, I’m also sending out a weekend roundup for which the deadline is noon on Friday.

If you registered some time ago but have forgotten your password, there’s an “Email My Password” option on the Login page. Your “user name” is the email address you used when registering with the web site.

Posting events is supposed to be easy. If you find that it’s not, let me know so I can make it easier. After you enter your password, you should see a list of options that includes “Add event to events calendar.” You can navigate to this menu by clicking the “MyPage Menu” button on the left hand side of the screen (only appears after you have entered your password).

If you are authorized to edit listings for a Democratic group that holds regular meetings, you will also see a link to “Confirm/correct calendar listings for [Group Name].” If you are authorized to edit listings for a campaign, you will see a link to “Post a Campaign Event for [Campaign Name].”

After posting your event, check to make sure it is displayed properly. If there’s a problem, and you can’t figure out how to fix it, feel free to ask for help. Sometimes I can help you make it look prettier or add a link to an online mapping service for directions.

I will continue to post relevant events that I pick up on myself, as time permits, but there’s a lot of truth in the old saying that “if you want a job done right, do it yourself.”


– David Carr, webmaster, not making endorsements in races between Democrats

Because this has periodically been the source of misunderstandings, let me say it again: does not take sides in races between Democrats, and a campaign or event listing for any particular candidate should not be interpreted that way. If your favorite candidate is not listed on the website, it’s because they haven’t taken advantage of the opportunity, not because I’ve snubbed them. is meant to be a “level playing field” between Democrats, a resource that all campaigns can trust to treat them fairly.

This is an editorial policy for the website and does not mean that I don’t have some personal favorites among the candidates, some of whom I’m actively supporting — but privately. Where BlueBroward is concerned, there is nothing I’m doing for the candidates I favor that isn’t available to their competitors. (Although, certainly, I do pester candidates I like a little more to make sure they post their stuff to the website).

One of the things I’m thinking of doing, when I have time to get it organized, is set up some sort of Board of Advisors who could “keep me honest” on this stuff and put a slightly more formal organization behind BlueBroward. But meanwhile I’m doing my best to play it straight.

One other clarification: I list and link to Grassroots Patriots on the website as an “Allied Organization” because I like the work they’re doing to energize grassroots volunteers. However, I’d categorize BlueBroward’s relationship with them as “friendly, but informal.” They’re a completely separate organization with a more formal structure. We try to reinforce each other’s efforts in general, but that’s it.

Clear enough?

Smith for Governor Events Center (acknowledges BlueBroward)

This is kind of interesting, and effort to do something like the BlueBroward calendar on the state level. I would rather not have it associated with any one campaign site, though, or at least to have a life beyond this campaign cycle. I’ve been toying with the idea of expanding beyond the county level and have a reservation on Anyone want to encourage me to go for it?

——– Original Message ——–

Subject: Smith for Governor Events Center for DEC and Club Events, and Rod Smith for Governor Events

Date: Sun, 16 Jul 2006 12:15:12 -0400

From: Paul Neaville <>

Hello this is Paul Neaville, Rod Smith’s campaign manager. Please forgive this intrusion, but I wanted to give you all access to an exciting new tool we have on our website, , which will allow you to post YOUR events on our website and allow our supporters and your members to have awareness of your events. is the link, and as it says, its simple!

You can do many things here, the main one being that you can create your own event–and upload your club and DEC meetings into our calendar.

While there are sites like that have county specific events, we are hoping to replicate these successes on a statewide level for all Democrats!

From our homepage,, you can go to the Events Center on the right hand of the screen and follow the prompts to either find an event near you, or create your own.

If you go to this link, and click on “plan an event” you can follow the prompts to load your events, be they regular meetings or special events you’re having, into our website.

Once you enter in your zip code, just follow the prompts to set up an account and you’ll be able to put your events out in one simple clearinghouse for the members of the Rod Squad. While we envision this being a tool for primary use by our supporters, we also envision this being a way for your members to communicate with a larger audience who may not attend normally scheduled meetings. There is no cost to you, we just ask that you only put events here that are not related to our opponent in the primary. We welcome other events related to other candidates other than our opponent. I’m sure you will understand this simple rule–other than that, we are happy to assist you by adding new categories or to add features you might find useful.

Please let us know what you think of the system, and thanks for being loyal Democrats!!!

Paul Neaville

Campaign Manager

Rod Smith for Governor

PS–forward to your friends and colleagues, I’m sure I missed some email addresses!

Can the Democrats Win the Ground War at Home?

I missed this piece in The Nation when it was first published, but found it a very interesting analysis of what went right and wrong in 2004 and the signs of hope for the future. The article particularly looks at the issues of coordination, or the lack of it, between the Democratic Party and allied groups like ACT. is intended to be a unifying force on the local level, open to Democratic clubs as well as sympathetic groups such as Democracy for America. We’re all supposed to be on the same side, right?

Giving the Democrats a 1-2-3-4 punch

Read Robert Watson’s opinion column in the Palm Beach Post. Thanks to Barry Dockswell for pointing this out.


Most Americans support restrictions on assault weapons, know that families can’t live on minimum wage, favor clean air and clean water and believe that America is always strongest when leading our allies, not bullying them. So Democratic policies don’t need to be changed; instead, the way they are presented to the country does need to be changed.

For example, the Republican Party, like a good courtroom attorney, frames debates in such a way that to oppose the war is to oppose our troops. To criticize or question Bush is to be unpatriotic. Democrats need to lead on national security and the fight against terrorism by reminding the country that being patriotic means providing our soldiers with protective armor, a livable wage, fair death benefits, and the truth about the war.

The Worst Thing a Campaign Web Site Can Be Is …

…outdated. The same could be said for most Websites, political or not. But when I do a campaign Web site, I want people to come away with the impression that there’s a lot going on with the campaign, momentum is building, this is a campaign worth getting involved with or supporting financially.

Conversely, if you’re not careful, you can present the impression that there’s not much going on with this campaign and it’s not worth paying attention to. If a visitor to your Web site clicks on a link that says “News” and sees only a few press releases that are several months old, what kind of message are you sending? Better not to have a News page if you can’t commit to keeping it current.

That’s why I always include a feature for listing current campaign events, and I have the events automatically expire off the Web site when the event date is past. I don’t want people coming to the Web site and seeing an invitation for a fundraiser from two months ago. I want them to see something new.

Often, Web sites become outdated because it’s too difficult to get new information posted. Typically, the bottleneck is a webmaster who maintains the site manually and is the only one who has access to the software and the password to make updates. But it shouldn’t be that hard!

A good Webmaster ought to be able to provide a way for other members of the campaign to post routine updates, such as press releases and event notices themselves. And they shouldn’t have to be technical geniuses to do it — anyone with the right password should be able to update the campaign Web site, and doing it should be no harder than sending an email.

So make sure it’s easy to update your Web site, and then keep it up to date.