Saturday, December 5, 2009

The New Inquisition or Crashing the Gate

The New Inquisition: Understanding and Managing Intellectual Freedom Challenges

Author: James LaRu

How can you become an effective advocate for intellectual freedom and patron privacy while maintaining a positive relationship with diverse elements of your community? Drawing on his experience as library director, this author advocates assuming a proactive role in every library function, from collection building to community outreach. This approach helps you understand the people who challenge library materials--as individuals and as members of various groups--turning enemies into allies, and building an intellectual, freedom-friendly community. You'll learn what materials get challenged and why and how you can effectively respond to challenges while meeting diverse community needs. Here are stories from the frontlines, practical guidelines on policies and procedures as well as common-sense tips on how to maintain your cool while dealing with specific groups or individuals--all presented with common sense and humor. If you have been struggling with challenges and wonder how you can uphold your ideals while dealing with harsh realities, this is the book you have been waiting for.

Table of Contents:
Acknowledgments     ix
Introduction: The Blue Line     xi
The Need for and Purpose of This Book     xiii
Scope and Audience     xiii
Background: A Historical Perspective     1
History of Censorship: The Burning of Books     1
Definitions     3
The Constitution and the First Amendment: Foundations of Intellectual Freedom     5
The Library Bill of Rights     15
But What about the Children?     19
Obscenity     20
Religion and Libraries     27
Big 16     28
Madonna     30
Focus on the Family     34
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints     44
The Difference between FOF and the Mormons     49
Reading with the Enemy     50
Generations     57
Types and Life Cycles     59
Public Education: A Profile     61
Focus on the Family: Redefining the Mission     65
Anything Goes?     67
Responding to Challenges     71
Who Are They?     71
The Initial Response     74
The Written Responses: Letters     80
When the Issue Doesn't Die     84
Beyond the Basics: Taking It to the Street     89
The Pyramid Model     89
Geographic Information Systems     94
Becoming a Player     95
The Rubber Chicken Circuit     99
Public Speaking and Writing     99
Using Your Reputation     100
Newspaper Columns     101
Other Media     103
Politics     104
Professional Activity     107
Conclusion: The Fourth Turning?     109
Kid Stuff     109
I Pledge Allegiance to the Flag...     109
Tancredo and Immigration     113
There Is Always a New, a Next Inquisition     115
Appendix     117
Letters     117
Columns     144
References and Resources     149
Reference List     149
Intellectual Freedom Resources     150
Index     153

Look this: Implementing Lean Software Development or Mr China

Crashing the Gate: Netroots, Grassroots, and the Rise of People-Powered Politics

Author: Jerome Armstrong

Crashing the Gate is a shot across the bow at the political establishment in Washington, DC and a call to re-democratize politics in America.

This book lays bare, with passion and precision, how ineffective, incompetent, and antiquated the Democratic Party establishment has become, and how it has failed to adapt and respond to new realities and challenges. The authors save their sharpest knives to go for the jugular in their critique of Republican ideologues who are now running—and ruining—our country.

Written by two of the most popular political bloggers in America, the book hails the new movement—of the netroots, the grassroots, the unorthodox labor unions, the maverick big donors—that is the antidote to old-school politics as usual. Fueled by advances in technology and a hunger for a more authentic and populist democracy, this broad-based movement is changing the way political campaigns are waged and managed.

A must-read book for anyone with an interest in the future of American democracy. "

About the Authors:
Jerome Armstrong, a pioneer of the political blogosphere, founded one of the first political blogs,, in 2001. The person behind the netroots strategy that used blogs and meetups for Howard Dean's campaign, Jerome works as an internet strategist for advocacy organizations and political campaigns. He lives in Alexandria, Virginia.

Markos Moulitsas ZŅŠniga served in the U.S. Army for three years and later earned two bachelors degrees from Northern Illinois University and a law degree from Boston University. After moving to California to work in the tech industry, Markos started in May 2002. His blog has had a meteoric rise and now gets more than a million unique visitors each day, making it one of the most popular blogs in the nation. Markos lives in Berkeley, California.

Simon Rosenberg is president and founder of the New Democrat Network, a national membership organization that promotes strategies to modernize progressive politics. Before founding NDN, Rosenberg was a key member of Bill Clinton's first presidential campaign. He and his family live in Washington DC.

The New York Times - Peter Beinart

Armstrong and Moulitsas may well be right that the next great partisan transformation will be theirs. In Crashing the Gate they have written an insightful guide to how the Democratic Party can retake power. Now all they need to do is figure out why it deserves to.

Library Journal

Armstrong ( and Zuniga (, both popular liberal political bloggers, offer a critique of Democrats and lay out their strategy to save the party and win back control of government at all levels. They present a blistering attack on the Republican Party's ideological constituencies-the theocons, neocons, corporate cons, etc.-and the policies of the Bush administration, but they move quickly to a lengthy critique of the Democratic Party, which they describe, borrowing from Howard Dean, as a collection of single-issue interest groups (e.g., pro-choice, environmental, big labor, and gun control advocates) unwilling to make concessions for the greater good: the success of the party. The authors also note outdated old-boy systems of raising money, outmoded campaign strategies, and a lack of technological sophistication. The Democrats must nurture places where new ideas germinate, such as the world of the blog. Their plan strikes this reader as na ve, considering that Dean didn't win a single primary and that the Republicans have successfully mobilized large numbers of people in support of their candidates. Moreover, they assume that their progressive ideas are, in fact, what the masses subscribe to. While the book may spark some interest among blog readers and writers, its wider appeal will be limited. Recommended for larger public libraries and academic libraries with comprehensive holdings on campaigns and elections. Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.

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