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question everything Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 01:25 AM
Original message
The New Yorker: GAME PLAN
COMMENT
GAME PLAN
by George Packer
The New Yorker
Issue of 2005-10-24
Posted 2005-10-17

(snip)

But the soiled and forgotten contract (with America) suggests a way for the Democrats to seize their own rare chance in the 2006 elections. The Party will not return to power by waiting for indictments or by fine-tuning tired slogans. Nor will it be useful to copy the Republican rights strategy of pandering to its constituency: the conservative base is larger than that of the liberals, as we learned in last years Presidential election. The old debate over moving to the extreme or to the center, which resurfaces after every defeat, presents a false choice and is itself a sign of a political vegetative state. The sure way for the Democrats to go on losing is to frame a message designed to win back married Catholic women while mobilizing twenty-something iPod users.

Instead of trying to cobble together a hypothetical majority with a hodgepodge of small-bore policy proposals, the Democrats need to nationalize the elections of 2006 the way the Republicans did in 1994. A Democratic manifesto that unites the Partys own diverse factions would begin as a referendum on the ruling party: the White House and Congress have handed government over to corrupt interests, and, in so doing, the Republicans have betrayed basic American principles of honesty, competence, and fairness. There is no reason for Democrats to be on the defensive about moral values. On issue after issue, government by cronyism and corruption has sacrificed the interests of the middle class to those of the Administrations wealthy friends. The deepening inequality in American life threatens families and democracy, and it is neither natural nor inevitable.

As a new book, Off Center, by Jacob Hacker and Paul Pierson, points out, Republicans never won the war of ideas Americans remain almost implacably centrist but they created a powerful political machine that is tactically shrewder and far richer than that of the Democrats. To overcome these structural disadvantages, the Democrats campaign approach needs to be broad and bold. Energy: The Republicans have made America more dependent on foreign oil while gas prices are skyrocketing; the Democrats will push for energy independence. Health care: The Republicans have allowed private companies to eliminate choice while costs go up and millions of Americans lack insurance; the Democrats will enact national coverage that restores choice and holds down costs. Taxes: The Republicans have shifted the burden from the top to the middle; the Democrats will reverse that trend, and will end the Administrations ruinous fiscal policies. National security: Republican incompetence has squandered our power abroad and failed to make us more secure at home, as the country learned after Katrina; the Democrats will rebuild the armed forcesmaking it at least possible for the Iraq insurgency to be defeatedand bring competence to homeland security.

Above all, the Democratic Party needs to overcome its own self-esteem problem. Its leaders have to show imagination and take risks, to be confident and aggressive, to proceed as if the current occupant of the White House no longer matteredas if the Democrats fully intended to win and govern. The Democratic Party has to speak for the common good in a moral language; and it has to believe what it says, so that when the oppositions attacks come, as they will, it can find the heart and the courage to fight back.


http://www.newyorker.com/talk/content/articles/051024ta...
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longship Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 01:28 AM
Response to Original message
1. Read it 'n weep, Dem congress critters
Edited on Wed Oct-19-05 01:29 AM by longship
Better git yer act together.

on edit: Oh. BTW, nominated.
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rodeodance Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 01:33 AM
Response to Reply #1
2. luv it!!!
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rodeodance Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 01:36 AM
Response to Reply #1
3. "the common good" has been so lost for so long.

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rodeodance Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 01:37 AM
Response to Reply #3
4. but i fear it be labled 'socialist' by the Right.
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Griffy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 01:56 PM
Response to Reply #4
15. dont fear.. instead be proud you believe in SOCIETY..
or call it progressive, but find a way to get through to people we want a free capatilistic society with a government that works for the people! The key word is SOCIETY, which doesnt mean, every man/woman for him/herself! THATS an ownership society, and its no society at at... its anarcy with mob rule and survivial of the fitest! .. and they say they dont believe in evolution ,... HA!
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rodeodance Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 01:38 AM
Response to Original message
5. nominated
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PSPS Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 01:38 AM
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6. Oh, please ...
Most of it sounds good.

But when I read, "the Democrats will rebuild the armed forcesmaking it at least possible for the Iraq insurgency to be defeated," I'm disenchanted. Why must we "defeat" the "Iraqi insurgency?" If I heard a democratic candidate utter such a thing, I wouldn't exactly be motivated to vote. To me, that's just code for more war crimes, more torture, more senseless and immoral killing for ... nothing. In fact, it just furthers the democrat's abysmal record of tacitly endorsing bush's crimes.

No, as soon as I hear a candidate drag out this "win in Iraq" bullshit, I'm out.

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GuvWurld Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 10:29 AM
Response to Reply #6
14. Oh, please...PART II
There will be no sea change in this country by virtue of election results because current "election" conditions ensure inconclusive outcomes that will never receive unanimous acceptance. Such inherent uncertainty is one of the most common techniques used by this illegitimate government to intentionally divide We The People. This is how a Cold Civil War has been created and perpetuated, and the only way it will conclude is when we begin uniting our communities against this destructive force of divisiveness. Read Blueprint For Peaceful Revolution. The Dems are a part of the problem, not the solution, and "elections" are a complete distraction from the range of paths actually capable of shifting the balance of power between the imperialist fascists occupying government buildings in DC, and We The People.
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depakid Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 01:47 AM
Response to Original message
7. How many more people have to say this?
And how many more elections must the Dems lose before they learn the very OBVIOUS fact that they have to nationalize the elections and repudiate Republicans and their irrational policies- NOT legitimize them?

Even Walter Cronkite has called for a midterm convention.

Question is- will the Democratic "leadership" listen- or are they to timid (or, at this point- maybe ashamed)- to ante up and play the game to win for a change?

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patricia92243 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 06:08 AM
Response to Reply #7
9. Our leaders won't lead. n/t
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slay Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 03:15 AM
Response to Original message
8. Stopping stolen elections might helps the Dems get in office too
Just a thought. :shrug:
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Warren Stupidity Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 06:23 AM
Response to Original message
10. sniff sniff hmmm...
"the Democrats will rebuild the armed forcesmaking it at least possible for the Iraq insurgency to be defeated"

ah, I smell DLC bullshit.
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Cults4Bush Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 07:58 AM
Response to Reply #10
12. Same here... The time for more forces on the ground defeating the
insurgency has passed big time.
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Donailin Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 06:35 AM
Response to Original message
11. and the self esteem problem is a result of a stolen election
it stems from losing last year, being uterly defeated when we really won; not just in the presidential race but in other congressional seats.

We did most everything right, and it worked, but the election was stolen leaving us all second guessing ourselves and trying to correct what was never broken to begin with. It's quite evil what the republicans have done here. Quite evil.
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question everything Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 10:05 AM
Response to Reply #11
13. An excuse, really
How many here voted for Kerry because of ABB?

The reality is that we do not have a clear message that can be understood by most voters yes, even if we have to speak at a 6th grade level.

Human nature is that people think first of themselves, their families, their tribes, if you will.

We are liberals because we do think outside the box. We do not change our opinion about, say, universal health care, when someone close to us all of a sudden is denied insurance. We do not want all of a sudden seek govern emt assistance when we are victims of a disaster.

Certainly the industrial revolution of the 19th century, that created work places where many worked together, generated the need to unionize, to work together for the benefits of many, including ourselves and our tribes.

But since the 80s, when Reaganomics facilitated and encouraged the evisceration of many solid workplaces; when Wall Street bankers were rewarded, handsomely, by taking over smaller companies and then firing employees - we have moved to each man, and woman, for himself/herself.

We moved from a manufacturing society to a service one and with it we have seen good paying jobs with benefits disappearing, replaced by the vagaries of "consumer confidence."

The whole idea of a stable job no longer exists. An elderly neighbor of mine recently commented that it used to be that young men even without a high-school diploma could always get a job in a factory. Where do they go now, she asked.

With so many of us - educated professionals and middle managers - losing our jobs, several times, we ended up as being under employed and unemployed and self employed and "being consultants" - to fill the gaps in our resumes.

So we regressed back to our cocoons. We worry about our families and our friends and our tribes. We are emotionally exhausted to worry about the welfare of complete strangers.

We lived in California during the 90s where, as with all the pacific states, many of the entrepreneurs are now immigrants from the middle east and Asia Pacific. And.. like many first generations of immigrants, they, too, are too busy building their businesses, sending their kids to schools, active in their communities. But they do not want to be bothered with the common good of society at large. And, I suspect, the history of the unions as developed in Europe is foreign to them.

As many said before, when asked about specific topics, the majority of voters do care about the Democratic ideas: security of education, of jobs, of health care and of retirement. They just do not know how to translate this into the right votes.

We need good candidates who can do that in clear and direct messages.
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mom cat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-19-05 06:51 PM
Response to Original message
16. We have to put the fear of defeat into the hearts of every Dem that is
content to pull his or her punches.
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