Community Service, Science of Persuasion, Budgets & Taxes and More

The Public Leadership Institute is a nonprofit educational group that helps turn state and local elected officials, advocates and grassroots activists into progressive champions. To join, click here.

Community Service Ombudsman Act: Nonprofits now provide a great deal of the social services to our constituents. Here’s a way you can help: Use this model bill to create a Community Services Ombudsman who works to improve charity groups’ interactions with your government. This legislation is simple, it costs little, and it has the potential to substantially improve services to the needy.

The Science of Persuasion—Part One: Cognitive science tells us that persuasion is hard. Too often we unknowingly cause the reticular activating system (RAS) in our listeners’ brains to engage in “confirmation bias” and effectively turn off access to the cerebral cortex, the rational part of the brain. How do we restructure our arguments to avoid the reactive brain and reach the reflective brain instead? Read about it on IdeaLog, our blog intended to raise eyebrows and engage minds.

How to persuade on budgets and taxes: Wednesday, February 11 @3:00pm Eastern, 2:00pm Central, 1:00pm Mountain, noon Pacific. Many of us are in the middle of budget and tax debates and we all know this is a hard topic. This webinar will discuss how to apply the science of persuasion (see IdeaLog above) to these issues. Register here to participate.

Alert members or constituents that February 15 is the deadline for individual ACA coverage: The current open enrollment period for individual insurance plans ends on February 15. Maybe you’d like to send out an email alerting members or constituents? A sample email is here.

Watch out—right wingers trying to call a federal constitutional convention: There’s a new effort, led by ALEC, to call a convention under Article V of the U.S. Constitution. This could be a disaster, fundamentally changing individual rights and the roll of government. If you hear of serious efforts in your state, please warn us by emailing Michael Weiss at

Order printed copies of the Progressive Agenda: The 2015 Progressive Agenda is ready for distribution. You can download a PDF copy here. If you are willing, we will send you printed copies to distribute to your colleagues. Order here or contact Michael Weiss at