The Loyal Opposition Revisited

I'm a fan of Mr. Wald's idea of starting local debating/discussion societies. I am thinking of starting a Political Discussion Society in my home town and am interested in your input. The format would be a round-table style meeting at a local restaurant or public space. The MWP (or me in the name of the MWP) would pay for the rental space and/or refreshments. I would prepare a list of political topics to discuss. I would moderate any discussions to ensure civility and debate on behalf of the MWP. I would try to find the common ground between different ideologies and demonstrate how the MWP, through logic, evidence, and knowledge best supports the common ground. In order to promote free discussion and conserve privacy, I'm thinking of having the attendees use pseudonyms. The goal of the organization is to promote Whiggery political thinking and expand exposure of the MWP in an area of the country that really yearns for an alternative. I would take notes on the discussion to see what the local population thinks about various topics to help start a base of information for future growth of the MWP. I would not directly promote or proselytize for the MWP unless asked offline about it. What are your thoughts? What are your recommendations?

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  • Ted Coates
    commented 2017-03-06 08:35:41 -0500
    I think this is an excellent suggestion. The Democratic party was started in the 1790s by forming Democratic-Republican Societies. I think one way to ensure civil, informative conversations would be to follow standard debating format, giving set times for making a point, and for rebuttal. How many of you remember when most schools hosted debating clubs? Some meetings could also be forums for members to present papers on specific issues. Good luck. Please keep us informed of your progress in making this happen, so we can model similar groups.

  • Ted Coates
    tagged this with good 2017-03-06 08:35:41 -0500
  • Brandon Zicha
    commented 2016-11-20 14:39:27 -0500
    If I may be so bold, I have been trying to start a Whig Journal for some time that could morph into an ‘American Conservative’ style online magazine. I think a discussion that is publicly available on the internet would also provide a rich resource of material that we could link to in our social media discussions to raise the profile of our movement in addition to local organizing.

    I also think it would help to create a national Whig political discussion which is right now very much absent.

    Please e-mail me if you are interested in contributing at
  • Michael Wald
    commented 2016-11-13 02:13:48 -0500
    I wonder if it might be possible to partner up with a local Toastmaster’s club to do something like this. Their members are trying to better their public speaking and leadership skills anyway, public debate seems like a good complement.
  • Robert Edwards
    commented 2016-11-10 23:55:28 -0500
    Modern Whig West Region…yes please. Can you email me? Or pm me on Facebook through the Oregon Whig site?
  • Modern Whig West Region
    commented 2016-11-10 23:45:52 -0500
    Local chapter building 101, Robert. A great start!

    We have some relative experience in CA that may save you some trouble and headache if you would like it.
  • Modern Whig West Region
    tagged this with necessary 2016-11-10 23:45:51 -0500
  • Robert Edwards
    published this page in Whig Forums 2016-11-10 13:15:52 -0500