Radical Middle Newsletter
"Idealism Without Illusions"

 

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"New political parties such as the Citizens Party have formed in the United States. ...  [A] more visionary, global movement ... has now been incorporated as the New World Alliance."
-- Hazel Henderson, The Politics of the Solar Age, Doubleday, 1981

 

New World Alliance:
Introductory Brochure

 

In the late 1970s -- long before national political commentators like John Avlon and Joe Klein began writing about the “radical middle” (see 50 Thinkers and Activists Try to Describe the Radical Middle elsewhere on this website) -- a radical middle / transpartisan perspective began taking shape in the U.S.

Its first political vehicle may have been the New World Alliance (1979 - 1983).  The Alliance's introductory brochure, "A Different Kind of Political Organization," is reproduced below.

To view the Alliance's main web page - which includes its political platform, multiple print-media mentions, and comments from 15 former members - just click HERE.

 

SECTIONS OF THE BROCHURE:

1.    What Is Politics?

2.    What Is the New World Alliance?

3.    New World Policy Goals

4.    Some Projects of the Alliance

5.    Symbol of the Alliance

6.    Origins of the Alliance

7.    Governing Council of the Alliance

 

A Different Kind of Political Organization

 

Governing Council of the New World Alliance meets at a lodge near Phoenicia NY, September 1980.

 

 

 What Is Politics?

Politics is the way we live our lives.

It is not just running for office. It is the way we treat each other, as individuals, as groups, as governments. It is the way we treat our environment. It is the way we treat our selves.

Politics has to do with where we shop, what we eat, how we maintain our health. It has to do with the kinds of schools we create, the energy we use, the neighborhood organizations we build, the work we do.

Politics involves our way of seeing the world, of developing our consciousness, of awakening our whole selves. It has to do with our attitudes, our values, our innermost dimensions.

 

What Is the New World Alliance?

The New World Alliance is a gathering of people from all areas of the country, from all walks of life, and from all parts of the social and economic spectrum, who have come together around a new vision of politics.

We know that millions of people today have come to believe, as we have, that the traditional political parties and organizations -- whether of the left or right -- do not have solutions to our problems.

We know that millions of people today are moving, as we are, toward new forms of politics inside and outside the traditional structures, building new organizations in their communities and regions, thinking for themselves, discovering their own solutions and their power to make a difference in the world.

The New World Alliance seeks to identify these creative new forces around the country -- to help draw them together in a larger and more effective network -- to encourage others to join in taking these new paths -- and to transform the agenda of American politics during the decade ahead.

 

[TEN BROAD GOALS]

Specifically, the New World Alliance is working to foster:

A POLITICS OF HOPE that treats the problems and scarcities before us as opportunities to clarify our sense of what is truly important in life;

A POLITICS OF HEALING that goes beyond traditional polarities of left-against-right and us-against-them and in all matters promotes cooperation and community, understanding and mutual aid;

A POLITICS OF REDISCOVERY that rekindles such traditional values as self-reliance, wholesome living, thrift, generosity, neighborliness, community, and the honoring of excellence;

A POLITICS OF HUMAN GROWTH that fosters the fullest development of each person’s potential by working to improve our birthing and parenting, our nutrition, our health and fitness, our family and community life, our education, our arts and sciences, our way of growing old, and our way of dying -- all the things that make us more fully human;

A POLITICS OF ECOLOGY which understands that we are only one part of a seamless web of life, that damage to any part is damage to the whole, and that we are responsible for life on earth;

A POLITICS OF PARTICIPATION that provides every member of society with a full and equal opportunity to influence the political and economic institutions affecting their lives, and that fosters personal responsibility to fulfill that task;

A POLITICS OF APPROPRIATE SCALE that eliminates needless bureaucracy, removes the special privileges which maintain unnecessarily large concentrations of wealth and power, and wherever feasible encourages smaller industries, businesses, cities, and farms;

A POLITICS OF GLOBALISM that recognizes we are all citizens of an emerging planetary civilization, in which we must observe the rights and needs of people everywhere as fully as our own;

A POLITICS OF TECHNOLOGICAL CREATIVITY that develops the fullest potential of contemporary science by putting it in service to constructive activity, and guiding it by humanistic and ecological -- rather than technocratic -- values;

A POLITICS OF SPIRITUALITY which understands that we are at one with all creation, that each human being possesses a core of infinite worth, and that the way we do things is as important as the things we do.

 

[FOUR BROAD TASKS]

Those of us who have come together in the New World Alliance have been involved in a wide variety of activities for personal growth, social change, and ecological awareness. We have experienced this new kind of politics in operation, and we know that it works, here and now, in everyday life.

Therefore, we are creating the New World Alliance as a force which will help in the coming years to:

link and reinforce the individuals, groups, and organizations that are developing a New World politics . . .

clarify and communicate a broad view of what is going on throughout the country among these [people and] organizations . . .

stimulate an ongoing dialogue among people from every social and economic and political grouping about the best directions for America’s future . . .

initiate projects that translate the ideas of New World politics into practical and effective action.

We are not a political party, nor another special interest lobby, but rather something far more fundamental: An Alliance of individuals to encourage ALL of us to look deeply and questioningly at our attitudes and values, our institutions, and the way we live . . . and, together, to create a New -- and better -- World.

 

New World Policy Goals  [abridged]

 GLOBAL SECURITY

-- Advance a new global vision that rejects the inevitability of war, permanent enemies and permanent crisis;

-- Replace the demands of narrow nationalism with concern for the interests of people everywhere;

-- Promote the self-determination of all nations, and an end to political, cultural, and economic repression of the small and weak by the strong and powerful;

ECONOMY

-- Reduce centralized control of the economy, whether by government, corporations, labor, or finance capital;

-- Recognize the existence and the importance of informal, non-market economic activity;

ENERGY AND ENVIRONMENT

-- Transform our present wasteful, resource-depleting society into a high-efficiency society based on renewable resources;

-- Preserve ecological diversity and provide a clean, safe, and healthy environment for all life;

SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY

-- Emphasize the importance of scientific development of technologies that are appropriate for use in everyday life;

-- Involve ordinary citizens in the assessment of science and technology;

HEALTH

-- Promote a holistic approach to wellness rather than crisis-oriented responses to illness.

 

[For more - much more - information on recommended public policies, see the Alliance's political platform, housed HERE. - ed.]

 

Some Projects of the Alliance

Local Chapters [at one point there were chapters in many major cities - ed.]

“Living” Political Platform [A Transformation Platform: The Dialogue Begins, 98 pp., 1981]

“Consultations with Government Officials”

“Political Awareness Seminars”

“Bill of Responsibilities”

Political Action Committee

Speakers Bureau

Resource Center

Newsletter [Renewal, every three weeks, 1981-82]

 

Symbol of the Alliance

The White Eagle is a traditional Native American symbol of spiritual transformation, sacredness, watchfulness for the well-being of the coming generations. It is also found in many other cultures.

 

Origins of the Alliance

The New World Alliance was born from a conviction that our nation is at a crossroads where our ideas and institutions must advance to meet the problems and opportunities before us.

The Alliance originated from a process of cross-country networking by Mark Satin, and a 21-page questionnaire answered by over 350 people [from across the U.S. who were involved] in a variety of personal growth and social change activities.  The questionnaire asked what specific policies, programs, and processes could be fostered by a new transformation-oriented political organization.

The first Governing Council, selected by questionnaire respondents, met in December of 1979 to found the New World Alliance.

 

Governing Council of the Alliance

[There were 39 seats (excluding staff seats) on the GC; this list includes everyone seated in 1979 and / or 1980 -  ed.]

Cheryl Baker-Belcourt
Medicine Lodge Society, Blackfoot Tribe, MT

James Benson
Institute for Ecological Policies, VA

Clement Bezold
Institute for Alternative Futures, DC

Robert Buxbaum
Office of the New York City Council President, NY

Rene F. Cardenas
Development Associates Inc., DC

Nancy Cosper
Networker, OR

Jeff Cox
Organic Gardening Magazine, PA

Gordon Davidson
Sirius Community, MA

Leonard Duhl, M.D.
School of Public Health, University of California-Berkeley, CA

Bob Dunsmore
San Luis Valley Energy Center, CO

Gordon Feller
Planetary Citizens, NY

Mel Gurtov
Department of Political Science, Portland State University, OR

Bethe Hagens
Department of Anthropology, Governors State University, IL

Alanna Hartzok
Henry George School of Social Science, CA

Lex Hixon
WBAI-FM, NY

Norie Huddle
Center for New National Security, DC

Miller Hudson
State Legislature, CO

Neal Hurwitz
Development and fundraising consultant, NY

Donald Keys
Planetary Citizens, NY

Martha Keys
Planetary Citizens, NY

Arnold Klassen
Gay Health Collective, MA

Betsy Lehrfeld
Attorney, DC

Brian Livingston
Events coordinator, OR

Leslie Lowery
Public school teacher, NY

John McClaughry
Senior Domestic Policy Advisor, The White House, DC

Michael Marien
Future Survey newsletter, NY

Mark Mawrence
Networker and policy analyst, Sweden

Corinne McLaughlin
Sirius Community, MA

Patricia Mische
Global Education Associates, NJ

Wendy Mogey
Institute for the New Age, NY

Jay Ogilvy
SRI International, CA

Robert Olson
Office of Technology Assessment, DC

Richard B. Perl
Peace activist, NY

Donna Price
Financial consultant, CO

Rarihokwats
School of Living, PA

Kirkpatrick Sale
Author, NY

Marc Sarkady
Another Place Community, NH

James S. Turner
Food Safety Council, DC

Eric Utne
Wilson Learning Corporation, MN

Brenda Wade
Clinical psychologist, CA

Gail Whitty
Southeast Michigan Transportation Authority, MI

Malon Wilkus
Federation of Egalitarian Communities, MO

Stephen Woolpert
Department of Political Science, University of Maryland, MD

 

[FULL-TIME ALLIANCE STAFF MEMBERS; AUTOMATICALLY GC]

Sarah James
New World Alliance (staff), DC

Mark Satin
New World Alliance (staff), VA

Robert Thompson
New World Alliance (staff), VA

 

[ALLIANCE LEGAL COUNSEL; AUTOMATICALLY GC]

Gerald Goldfarb
Attorney, CA

ABOUT THE RADICAL MIDDLE CONCEPT

WHY "Radical Middle"?

WIKIPEDIA Weighs In

50 Thinkers and Activists DESCRIBE the Radical Middle

50 Best Radical Middle BOOKS of the '00s

GREAT RADICAL MIDDLE  GROUPS AND BLOGS:

Over 250 Great Radical Centrist GROUPS and  Organizations

25 Great Radical Centrist BLOGS

  RADICAL MIDDLE INITIATIVES:

Generational Equity and Communitarian platforms,1990s

U.S. Green Party's "Ten Key Values" statement, 1980s

New World Alliance, 1970s

SOME PRIOR  WRITINGS BY MARK SATIN:

New Options Newsletter, 1984-1992

New Age Politics: Healing Self and Society, 1976

OTHER
PRIOR   RADICAL MIDDLE TEXTS:

50 Best "Third Way" Books of the 1990s

25 Best "Transformational" Books of the 1980s

25 Best "New Age Politics" Books of the 1970s

NOT JUST RADICAL MIDDLE:

10 Best U.S. Political NOVELS

50 Current Political IDEOLOGIES

50 Current Political  MANIFESTOS