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Your host, PM 'Papa' Carpenter


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May 21, 2006


Bull. You and Rahm are wrong, and Dean is right. We've had years of doing Rahm's way, and what do we have to show for it? Our blogosphere is going to do just fine at putting cash in the hands of Democrats in tough battles, you and your consultant friends leave the overall party money alone to be spent on the overall party.

The conservatives have had a national grassroots strategy for years. Why again won't that work for the Dems?

Yeah PM, sorry, but I can't agree with you. 2008 is more important than 2006, and so is 2010. One of the biggest problems with our political system is that it can't seem to look past next week -- whether that concerns policy (viz. the Democratic response to high gas prices consisted of wanting to eliminate the gasoline tax) or politics. You are completely wrong, in fact your viewpoint is defeatist, timid, and ultimately cynical and unprincipled.

The Republicans didn't come into power overnight. They built up their party infrastructure for decades. When the mood of the country changed, in large part due to the effective, long-running, Republican propaganda campaign, they were ready.

The Dems, by contrast, have relied on a seat-of-the-pants, high-priced consultant strategy every election year. Emanuel and his ilk have had and seemingly continue to have no problem blowing large amounts of contributions on ineffective consultants but balk at spending money on building a legitimate party apparatus. If they had won a few elections in the past (I don't count Clinton - he won his own elections solely on the basis of his own political talent, not on integrity or anything else that really matters), I would be inclined to say that they have a point. But they haven't and every indication is that, if Dems do pick up some seats, it will be solely because they aren't Republicans. I haven't heard Emanual or his minions come up with a winning message.

If the DNC gives the DCCC a sizeable chunk of those contributions, all we will be left with after the elections is another loss because the money will be spent on those idiotic consultants that tell the party insiders what they want to hear instead of what is important and relevant. And, we will have a party structure that is only partially reassembled.

It seems to me that it is not a feast or famine proposition. As a Democrat in one of the states the party typically writes off, I feel abandoned; and I know that if we put in some effort in South Carolina we could have our voices heard. We don't want a one party system either, and in those states that we don't carry we can at least be a force to be reckoned with. Further, a party that sells itself as having egalitarian ideals should act like it. Thus the compromise; spread some of the money to those areas that just might surprise you if nurtured a little bit and make a big deal of your inclusiveness everywhere. Tell your constituents in the "battle states" that they will not be held hostage by "solid republican" states because they ain't so solid and we're going to prove it.

The Democratic candidates in South Carolina, for example, have to assert themselves and point to what a lousy job the republicans have been doing at all levels of government, and for that they need the party's support.

Why the HELL would the Democratic Party want to keep doing things the same old way (Emmanuel's way) and then expect a different result? That's the definition of insanity.

The Dem Party workers in those states that have long been ignored by, and disorganized due to, the failed past strategies of the Democratic Party are now enthused and engaged like people who've been stuck in a windowless, airless room and are now are exposed to bright sunshine and fresh oxygen.

This is the time when ground workers are needed most, especially to reach out to disaffected Republicans and fill in the vacuum left by years of Bush incompetence and criminality.

If Howard Dean is wrong, I don't want to be right.

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