As Winter turns to Spring, President Barack Obama's campaign organization is setting its sights on the Summer to recruit and train an army of new community organizers, the Los Angeles Times reports.
Presumably, Organizing for America's efforts to "strengthen our democracy" will likely also coincide with Obama's re-election plans in 2012. However, the latest recruitment message from OFA goes beyond politics and campaigning to emphasize plans for a new military-style boot camp for grassroots organizers, a "program that aims to put boots on the ground and help foster a new generation of leaders -- not just to help win elections but to strengthen our democracy in communities across the country."
If you apply and are selected, you'll be trained in the basic organizing principles that have helped to build and power this movement, and you'll be assigned to a specific community where you'll get to work organizing supporters.
Movements are built and sustained by ordinary people taking responsibility for organizing their fellow citizens to make their voices heard. We're looking for individuals who are prepared to work to help support the President's agenda -- and lay the groundwork that will help us win a new set of elections.
OFA's "Summer Organizing Fellowship" also offers college credit in exchange for participation in the two-month volunteer program.
"Effective organizing doesn't happen in a vacuum. It takes commitment, time, and hard work to build a movement around a cause," the message says, although it does not identify any particular "cause" other than promoting Obama and his agenda.
The emailed recruitment message went out Tuesday night to millions of Obama supporters and past donors.
The fellows "will be assigned to a specific community," the message said, "where they'll work to organize supporters street by street, neighborhood by neighborhood." Their jobs will involve recruiting additional Obama workers, managing Obama-related events, knocking on doors to talk about Obama and to "lay new groundwork to carry this movement forward for years to come."
"In the end, their work will take our grassroots power to an impressive new level," the message boasts.
The Times adds:
The appeal cites as one role model Nikki Giancola who underwent the training, then quit her middle school teacher's job to become a regional Obama field director and the satisfaction she felt "in helping millions of people."
Another community organizer, Paras Patel, tells of one unforgettable moment actually meeting the leader for whom they all labor, President Obama. "He shook my hand," Patel recounts, "and told me that he was proud of me."
No mention of an Obama organizer flag, uniform -- or salute.