Government is Good is
a web project of Douglas J. Amy, Professor of Politics at Mount Holyoke
College, that provides a comprehensive analysis of the essential role
government plays in our daily lives. If people understood the basic
lessons in civics explained in the essays on this website we would have been
able to avoid most of the problems we have today.
Authoritarians is a website maintained by Bob Altemeyer from the
University of Manitoba that explains the roll the authoritarian
personality—those who blindly submit to authority without questioning the
validity of that authority—plays in American politics today. This
website explains the reasons for the irrationally in the Conservative Movement
Who Rules America:
Power, Politics, and Social Change is a website by G. William Domhoff,
a Research Professor at the University of California, Santa Cruz, that
provides "detailed original information on how power and politics operate in
the United States."
American Society of Civil Engineers
is an organization that provides frequent reports on the state of
infrastructure facilities in the U.S. and the need for government to invest
more in these important public resources. See
"Report Card for America's
Center for Budget and Policy
Priorities conducts research to inform public debates over
proposed budget and tax policies and to help ensure that the needs of
low-income families are considered in these debates. Particularly good at
detailing efforts to restrict budgets and cut programs. See for example,
“TABOR: A Threat to Education,
Health Care, and Social Services.
Citizens for Sensible
Safeguards is a coalition of public interest groups across the
country concerned with our ability to protect the public with effective
regulatory policy. See, for example, “Special Interest Takeover: The Bush
Administration and the Dismantling of Public Safeguards."
Common Cause is
a nonpartisan nonprofit advocacy organization that serves as a vehicle for
citizens to make their voices heard in the political process and to hold their
elected leaders accountable to the public interest.
Partnership for Public
Services is an organization that works to improve the
performance of government at all levels; and government's place in the lives
and esteem of American citizens.
Dēmos: A Network for Ideas & Action
is one of the foremost organizations promoting a strong and effective public
sector with the capacity to plan for the future and provide for the common
good. Demos is the leading source of ideas and strategies for reviving public
support for government. Particularly noteworthy is its program
Public Works: The Demos Center for
the Public Sector, which has a wide variety of extremely useful reports,
articles, and briefing papers.
FairVote—the Center for Voting
and Democracy is the leading organization promoting voting system
reforms that would make government more representative of the electorate and
more responsive the public. See their
Program for Representative
Priorities Project is a research organization that analyzes and
clarifies federal data so that people can understand and influence how their
tax dollars are spent. Also, facilitates dialogue and action between national
social justice and security policy groups. You can find out, for example,
your tax dollars go.
New America Foundation
is a non-partisan policy institute that argues for more active government in a
wide variety of policy areas, including education, retirement, environment,
and health. See, for example,
Ten Big Ideas for a New America.
is an interesting new website that provides news, information, and online
tools to those working in and with the U.S. Government. The aim is to improve
government by inspiring and cultivating change through the spread of
information and ideas, the use of innovative online tools, and the strategic
deployment of satire and wit. See, for example, the section on
OMB Watch is a
hardworking organization dedicated to increasing government transparency and
accountability; to ensuring sound, equitable regulatory and budgetary
processes and policies; and to protecting and promoting active citizen
participation in our democracy. The site has a particularly good analysis of
how conservatives have tried to undermine the regulatory mission of many
federal agencies: The
Bush Regulatory Record: A Pattern of Failure.
On the Commons.org is a project of the Tomales Bay Institute and
is dedicated to spreading the idea that "some forms of wealth belong to all of
us, and that these community resources must be actively protected and managed
for the good of all." Also includes references to several valuable books and
The State of the Commons.
inspired by the work of George Lakoff, this organization seeks to promote
progressive values by "reframing" the public debate over issues like taxes and
People for the American
Way is an organization dedicated to battling right-wing threats
to our rights and freedoms. They also chronicle some attacks on public
institutions—see, for example,
Veneer: The Deeper Agenda to Privatize Public Education."
Public Citizen is an
organization that fights for openness and democratic accountability in
government. Also pushes for better consumer, energy, environmental, and drug
regulations. See especially,
“Not Too Costly, After
All: An Examination of the Inflated Cost Estimates Of Health, Safety and
is an organization that helps people and their families be healthy. The site
has lots of information about how much harm tobacco and smoking can cause to
people, their health and the health of their families.