Monday, July 31, 2006

Why?

When I look at the political battlefield for 2006, I see a multitude of Republican vulnerabilities -- issues and screwups that will make every incumbent Repug mumble, shuffle and try to change the subject:
  • Osama bin Laden
  • Afghanistan
  • WMDs
  • Iraq/al Qaeda ties
  • Iraq reconstruction
  • Iraqi democracy
  • 2500+ dead Amercian soldiers
  • Social Security reform
  • Culture of corruption (Tom DeLay/Jack Abramoff)
  • Oil company profits
  • New Orleans
  • Katrina
  • Terry Schiavo
  • The deficit
  • George Bush
  • Dick Cheney

Pretty much every Republican in America is vulnerable on most if not all of these issues. So what are the Dem's stressing with their "Six for '06" campaign?

• “Real Security At Home And Overseas”

• “Better American Jobs — Better Pay”

• “College Access For All”

• “Energy Independence — Lower Gas Prices”

• “Affordable Health Care — Life-Saving Science”

• “Retirement Security and Dignity”

If this was couples therapy, it would be time to reach for "Republicans are from Mars, Democrats are from Venus."

Maybe the Big Six polled through the roof. Maybe offering a positive agenda is the way to go. And it sure beats the "We can do better"nonsense they trotted out a month or so ago. But this seems to me to be a monstrously stupid approach.

This kind of approach only reinforces the perception of the Democrats as the Mommy party. I don't really think people need to be reminded of that. What they need reminding of is that Daddy is an alcoholic, abusive psychopath who is spending his childrens' meager inheritance on his violent, drunken binges. Democratic silence on these issues is a huge missed opportunity to force Republicans to fragment over their litany of failure.

Fareed Zakaria gets it:
[If I were running against conservatives,] I would make up a campaign commercial almost entirely of Donald Rumsfeld’s press conferences, because the man is looking — I mean, it’s not just that he seems like a bad Secretary of [Defense]. He seems literally in a parallel universe and slightly deranged. If you listen to what he said last week about Iraq, he’s living in a different world, not a different country.
Matt Stoller gets it, too. Why doesn't the Democratic Party?

5 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

It is indeed time to play hardball or become duplicitous...

A cautionary tale

http://www.crisispapers.org/Editorials/germany-1933.htm

8:45 AM  
Anonymous Jessica Margolin said...

Gosh ...is the term "mommy" an epithet now?

I hope I'm misinterpreting; I agree that the "strong father" model has led to the "psychotic, abusive father" outcome, but why do we have to buy into those frames at all?

The United States isn't the first country to want to FORCE the world to better after an economic crash (cf. Nazi Germany, etc.) Countries try it - it doesn't work; it's just a national temper tantrum. I'm eagerly awaiting Ann Coulter's next book, "My Daddy Can Beat Up Your Daddy."*

So I disagree with the concept that the Dems should distance themselves from nurture.

The frames I see are the "bounded" (those whose ideals require them to adhere to treaties and encourage empathetic and respectful behavior) and the "antisocial" (those who are unencumbered by other peoples' points of view).

So I agree that showing Rumsfeld's "mental disorganization" is a potentially effective weapon, but I think it's critical that the Dems show this not as "discipline" is good or bad, but -- and I assume this is what you were saying -- "excessiveness" is destructive.

---
* = Er, no. Not really.

9:40 AM  
Blogger bluememe said...

Jessica, I am definitely not saying that the mommy paradigm is bad. Mommy is good.

I am saying that those who are open to the mommy message are already with us. We can work on being a better mommy in December. I just think that the best way to take control of Congress is to confront what a dismal failure daddy is. The folks who think like "my daddy can beat up your daddy" (which is a concept I discuss in a column I have been working on) do not seem to respond to nurture. In the short term, the best we can hope for is to make them question daddy just enough that they stay home on election day.

11:03 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Actually Jessica, Ann's new book is, "My Psyhco Dad Can Beat the Living Daylights Out of Your Stupid, Liberal, and Probably Sexually Immoral Mommy".

3:59 AM  
Anonymous Robin Grant said...

It's pretty simple. 90% of Democrats in congress and especially the leadership are actually Republicans.

As I have been saying repeatedly since 2000, look at the results, not the message. For example, they voted against Alito, but most voted FOR cloture, the vote that mattered.

I realized that the leadership of the Democrats were Republican stooges when Sen. Inyoe (however it's spelled) made a statement at a press conference when congress was 'investigating' Iran-Contra. He said that the Democratic led investigation would NOT prosecute the president and would NOT investigate further if it was shown the Reagan knew and approved of what was going on. The Democratic leadership refused to truly investigate Republican law- and constitution breaking activity by the Executive Branch.

At every turn they have capitulated to the GOP. The Dems refuse to fight back against the illegal activities of the GOP in both congress and the White House.

Every day I hear of so-called Democrats refusing to challenge Republicans. The Democrats that DO challenge the GOP are branded as wild-eyed extremists and are treated as enemies by the Democratic leadership. Look at how they treat Dean when he dares to tell us the truth instead of the lies the leadership feeds us.

It's been obvious for 25 years now, yet most liberals I know refuse to listen to the obvious.

How obvious is it? The DLC is meeting secretly to figure out how to neutralize the liberal base of the Democratic Party and keep control of the Democratic Party firmly in the hands of the Republicans.

10:27 AM  

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