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boolean Donating Member (992 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 12:04 PM
Original message
Democrats need to shift further to the left
Edited on Thu Aug-03-06 12:06 PM by boolean
Let's face it, the only reason Clinton was able to win twice was because of his charisma and charm. Conservatives who normally voted for the Repukes switched to Clinton because
1) He was socially conservative in many respects
2) He told funny jokes

This is how conservatives base their vote. It's not about important issues, but about image. Liberals, on the other hand, base their vote on what's good for the country, what's truly morally right, and where politicians stand on the important issues. Important issues being: Education, health care, the economy, peace, etc...NOT issues such as flag burning, gay marriage, how many times the candidate goes to church every week, or any other such nonsense.

So why have the Democrats been unable to win for so long? Because they've been shifting to the right with the Repukes. They've made it so that the only way they can possibly win is by having someone with enough charm to sway normally Repukican voters to their side. These right shifting Democrats truly believe that the majority of the country is conservative, and they're wrong.

50% of the country doesn't even bother voting anymore. Why is that? Who are those 50%? Does anyone really think they're conservatives? No, they're people like me. True liberals. If the Democrats want to win, they have to start being a true alternative to conservative thought, which has proved itself wrong time and time again. The liberals are out there, they just don't have any leaders. They need more Kucinich's and fewer Liebermans.

The Dems need to start accepting the liberals into their party, and most importantly, they need to defend the action through the media. Every time Bill O'Reilly accuses the Democrats of becoming "far left", they Democrats have to release a statement saying "Yeah, so? What's it to you?" They need to show the non voting liberals of the country that they really do represent them.

I really believe that until they do this, it's just never going to happen. True liberalism will never take the country back if the Democrats don't start becoming true liberals. Sure, they might get a charming guy like Clinton every once in a while, or they might take power for a couple of terms simply based on the incompetence of the Repukes, but they'll never have a solid voter base of people who vote FOR them as opposed to voting AGAINST the other guy.
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Tom Joad Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 12:07 PM
Response to Original message
1. Dems need to oppose war. Dems need to do things because it is
the correct thing to do, and not just what pollsters tell them will win elections. The reason they lose is because so many stay home, so uninspired by having two repukes on the ballot.
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JeffR Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 12:09 PM
Response to Original message
2. I see a snarky Benchley in your future...
Good post.
Welcome to DU!
:toast:
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LynneSin Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 01:31 PM
Response to Reply #2
16. I'll step in for Mr. Benchley until he gets here
The problem first off is too many candidates run unopposed and I'm not talking US Senate positions, but lower level positions even like local state congressional positions and other 'non-big ticket' positions.

Democrats of any part of the spectrum need only look at Bernie Sanders to see how an independent candidate finally won a US Senate (well he will win - that's a given). He started out as a Mayor of a Mid-Size city and he built he career from now. You want to clean the US house or senate, then you need to start looking around at local candidates who are doing the job locally and then BUILDING the for the big run. Get them to run for bigger races and build their name recognition. Ultimately, the battle of who wins any given election is going to be on how well someone knows your name. And we all don't have Ned Lamont's hanging out in our states willing to put up alot of his own money in order to make the run against the big guns.

Sure, this means that right now we're going to have to put up with some bad democrats, but I'm not talking about solving the problem today, I'm talking about building the party for the future so we don't have to have posts like this talking about what we wish the Democratic party was like while sacrificing good democrats with little name recognition for state wide races like Senate instead of building them in the party.

BTW, this is why the republican party IS successful (along with a host of some corrupt action). They started back in the late 70s-early 80's going after stuff like school boards and city council seats where they could have the most direct influence over the population. School Boards use to be filled with progressive ideology but now bogged down with religious rhetoric.

If we don't start thinking about these small races and getting candidates running them and CHALLENGING democrats in there who are ineffective then why bother going after the bad democrats in the US House and ESPECIALLY the US Senate?
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MrBenchley Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 05:26 PM
Response to Reply #16
27. Great post!
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Vidar Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-05-06 10:10 AM
Response to Reply #16
66. Good post
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Hun Joro Donating Member (511 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 12:09 PM
Response to Original message
3. I agree completely...
And this is exactly why some Democrats drifted to the Green Party in 2000. K&R.
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TrueFunkSoldier Donating Member (215 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 02:05 PM
Response to Reply #3
22. Registered Independent Since Clinton, 1996!
Edited on Thu Aug-03-06 02:11 PM by TrueFunkSoldier
I was so furious with Clinton and the Repugs in 1996 that I registered Independent and never looked back. I didn't care what anyone said: "You're throwing away your vote," or "A vote for Nader is a vote for Bush!" Well, I'm sorry...I refuse to compromise my moral conscious or ethics. I could not fathom voting for a Dem unless it was a true Democrat, not a DemoCRAP! I did end up voting for Kerry in 2004, and remembering my father telling me that there were too many registered Democrats who sat out because the Democratic party has moved too far to the RIGHT!! He said that Democrats ought not fear the Repugs when they attack for being a liberal. History repeats itself always! There will come a time when "conservative" becomes the pejorative.

I truly believe that most Americans agree with liberal Democratic principles. I truly believe that most Americans would be willing to vote Democratic if the Democratic party simply stood by its liberal roots. Here's what they should do:

1. Redefine "liberal" in positive terms. The DemoCraps have allowed the Repugs to define them for far too long as "tax and spend liberals," like there's something inherently wrong with being a 'liberal'.

2. Reclaim and embrace liberalism! If the Religious Right continue to link Republicanism with Christianity and piety, remind them that Christ IS a LIBERAL!! Everything Jesus Christ stood for: no wars, stewardship over the environment; helping the least among us, etc. These are LIBERAL values. He never once said anything about homosexuality or abortion. NEVER!!!!

Only when liberals start to embrace who they are will they once again win over the hearts and minds of the American voter. As long as they continue to behave in Republican-Lite manner, most voters will continue to believe that there is no difference between Tweedledee and Tweedledum!

Hopefully LIEberman's loss will serve as a lesson to be learned!

KNOW THYSELF! EMBRACE THYSELF!! ACCEPT YOURSELF!!!

...then others will accept you!
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MrBenchley Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 07:05 PM
Response to Reply #22
28. So you're no fucking help to anyone
and we should pay attention to somebody who isn't a Democrat. Hokay.
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boolean Donating Member (992 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 09:57 PM
Response to Reply #28
35. And you're a help to...who?
How is it that you DLC minded people have become so delusional that you actually think whatever the hell it is you've been doing for god knows how many years now is actually working?

The last time the Democrats had any real power whatsoever was when Clinton was in charge. And he didn't even have the house and senate for most of that time. Other than that, it's been Repuke after Repuke after Repuke. And they've been winning state legislatures too.

Having a bunch of Zell Miller Democrats in power will not change anything. It's exactly this type of attitude that needs to change. "Vote for who can win" as opposed to vote for who has real liberal policies.

There is nothing you can say to anyone to convince us that your way has been working. It hasn't been working. Nobody wants a choice between conservative and more conservative.
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MrBenchley Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-04-06 08:20 PM
Response to Reply #35
57. LOL!
"The last time the Democrats had any real power whatsoever was when Clinton was in charge."
That would be the DLC's Bill Clinton.

"Other than that, it's been Repuke after Repuke after Repuke. And they've been winning state legislatures too."
No doubt because America is so gung-ho for the far left's empty rhetoric and pompous self-righteous posturing.

"There is nothing you can say to anyone to convince us that your way has been working."
Certainly there's nothing anyone can say to someone as out of touch with reality as you. Nor do I feel ilke doing anything but giving you the ridicule you richly deserve.
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boolean Donating Member (992 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-05-06 01:33 PM
Response to Reply #57
74. You're HILARIOUS!
That would be the DLC's Bill Clinton.
Yeah, I know. Did you not read the initial thread? It's because he was charming and funny.

No doubt because America is so gung-ho for the far left's empty rhetoric and pompous self-righteous posturing.
Did you not read the initial thread? it's because the far left hasn't had any real voice in the Democratic party.

Certainly there's nothing anyone can say to someone as out of touch with reality as you. Nor do I feel like doing anything but giving you the ridicule you richly deserve.
Nice. You have nothing, so you resort to ridicule. You can't point to any success besides Clinton because you have no other successes besides Clinton. Every fucking election it's a choice between a conservative and another conservative. Your way hasn't worked.
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MrBenchley Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-05-06 01:42 PM
Response to Reply #74
75. Whereas you are just tedious and silly
"It's because he was charming and funny."
So you're telling us issues don't matter....hokay. Then there's no fucking reason to pick up the far left's banners.

"Did you not read the initial thread?"
The one that talked about how much conservatives love Bill Clinton. Jeeze, what a pantload that was.

"it's because the far left hasn't had any real voice in the Democratic party"
Those darned evil Democrats....hee hee hee. Don't worry, there's always the Green par--oh wait, that turns out to be nothing but a GOP dirty trick. Well, there's always the Maharshi party for the far left.

"You can't point to any success besides Clinton"
I can point to tons of them. Meanwhile, how did that Kucinich juggernaut do? Oh that's right, Kucinich couldn't even break the 10% mark in Ohio, where he was the favorite son.

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LincolnMcGrath Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-04-06 08:22 PM
Response to Reply #35
58. !
Ask DUs 'most deleted' about this flip flop of his

Liar Liar

Pants on Fire
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Name removed Donating Member (0 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-04-06 06:43 AM
Response to Reply #28
45. Deleted message
Message removed by moderator. Click here to review the message board rules.
 
lonehalf Donating Member (273 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 12:12 PM
Response to Original message
4. Not just shift Left but...
...Shout it from the rooftops.

I live in North Georgia and I can tell you that most people here don't think the Democratic Party stands FOR anything.

I am constantly told that we are OPPOSED to everything and FOR nothing.

Let's tell them very loudly what we are for.
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Iris Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-05-06 02:37 PM
Response to Reply #4
79. I live in Georgia too - still can't figure out what conservative stands
for. It's just a word they use over and over. I voted in the Republican primary so I could vote AGAINST Ralph Reed. I'll be voting AGAINST Karen Handel in the run-off - the bitch sent me a 4 page magazine in which she must have used the adjective "conservative" 1,500 times. What does it mean? And why does the Secretary of State need to be conservative?
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KurtNYC Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 12:12 PM
Response to Original message
5. Lamont's kicking of Lieberman's butt next Tuesday is
going to shock the DLC (if it hasn't already). Hopefully by 2008 we will have some real choices to pick from.
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kentuck Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 12:12 PM
Response to Original message
6. When did the Democratic stop being the Party for "liberals"?
I thought the Democratic Party was the Liberals Party? Did I miss something??
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Greyhound Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 09:41 PM
Response to Reply #6
33. Apparently you've missed the last 25 years.
With the coronation of saint raygun, the Democratic Party went into panic mode and has been desperately seeking to out-conservative the re :puke:s ever since. That's how he was able to impose his social decimation program, remember who controlled congress for most of his reign.
But of course the real problem is that we haven't been conservative enough all this time. :kick:
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democrank Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 12:29 PM
Response to Original message
7. I agree, boolean.
Our party`s "center" has been shoved so far to the right. I`ll bet many, if not most of the older Democrats here will agree.
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bvar22 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 01:28 PM
Response to Reply #7
15. FDR would agree with you.
Hell, Richard Nixon would agree with you. He was farther to the Left than today's Democratic Party.
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illumn8d Donating Member (693 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 01:31 PM
Response to Reply #15
17. So bizarre
yet unfortunately true.
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lojasmo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 12:33 PM
Response to Original message
8. Agreed with a kick!
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oberliner Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 12:34 PM
Response to Original message
9. It wouldn't hurt to run someone with charm and charisma as well
As unfortunate a reality as it is, many folks vote, as you said, based on those factors.

I remember thinking after seeing Clinton during the 1992 primary debates, this is the guy who could win.

And that was after 12 years of Republican presidential rule.

Wouldn't hurt to find another man or woman with Clinton's charm before it becomes another 12 years.

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Dr Fate Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 01:00 PM
Response to Original message
10. We just need to stop shifting right & pretending it is "the center."
It's not that we need to go left, it's just that we need to stop some elements of the party from adopting & framing far-right positions as "the center."
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Sammy Pepys Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 01:02 PM
Response to Original message
11. OK, flameproof underwear activated...
First of all, I agree generally. But I think the problem of winning extends beyond how far left the Democratic Party is or isn't. The Democratic Party can't even get on the same page when it comes to big issues half the time. This does have a little bit to do with right/left disparity in the party, but I think is a larger symptom of just generally weak leadership.

Now, as far as going left I would love to see the Democratic Party form a more unified liberal message. But you can't just move left for the sake of moving left. If you do it without any respect for regional disparities, you're essentially handing Republicans victories. There are going to be areas where any legitimate contender is going to have to move opposite his or her party in soem degree. The Republicans also have this problem, but not to the extent that the Dems do because frankly the Republicans are a lot better at finding a couple of bullet points and making them centerpieces.

A more unified liberal message goes some distance in relieving those types of regional pressues more than just moving left. Something that all Dem incumbents and candidates can tap into will make much more of a difference than simply moving left on its own. The downside of this is that you're probably not going to be able to move the Dems as far left as you want to.
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wyldwolf Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 01:05 PM
Response to Original message
12. LOL! Your entire premise is set up on a falsehood
Edited on Thu Aug-03-06 01:06 PM by wyldwolf
Let's face it, the only reason Clinton was able to win twice was because of his charisma and charm. Conservatives who normally voted for the Repukes switched to Clinton because
1) He was socially conservative in many respects
2) He told funny jokes


Like Franken often says, you pulled that "fact" out of your butt.
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Dr Fate Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 01:18 PM
Response to Reply #12
13. I'll have to agree with you for once- Conservatives HATED Clinton.
Edited on Thu Aug-03-06 01:21 PM by Dr Fate
I dont recall the trend of solid Republican voters switching to Clinton either.

Socially conservative? I thought he was a sex fiend and a "pathological liar" according to social conservatives. Pro-choice & Dont ask, dont tell is hardly socially conservative- it is moderate-to-left.

Swingvoters & moderates? Sure- but not "Conservatives who normally voted for the Repukes"- the election was much more divided than the poster suggests.

The partisan Republicans hated the guy, and called him "far left" and "ultra Liberal" whether it was true or not.


I'll have to agree with you that the OP sets up a false premise.
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wyldwolf Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 01:26 PM
Response to Reply #13
14. well, it did sound pretty to those inclined to believe such rubbish.
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beltanefauve Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-04-06 01:44 AM
Response to Reply #12
42. Glad you brought that up
As I recall, in 1992, Poppy started to really lose ground once the majority of the public saw him for being "out of touch", and Clinton quite the opposite.

Same thing seems to be happening in Connecticut...
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wyldwolf Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-04-06 08:49 AM
Response to Reply #42
47. you're analysis is not without merit
Edited on Fri Aug-04-06 08:49 AM by wyldwolf
...and not saying you're one of them, but some on DU have tried to paint me as Lieberman supporter because of my support for Bill Clinton. In reality, and as I've said here before, the specific outcome of the CT race means nothing to me from a politically pragmatic position. Either way, the party will retain that senate seat.
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NobleCynic Donating Member (991 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 01:31 PM
Response to Original message
18. I agree
But for a more cynical reason. The average person doesn't pay attention to politics. They assume, erroneously, that neither party is correct and that the truth of the matter lies in the middle. Pull the middle left by standing to the left.
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bvar22 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 01:36 PM
Response to Original message
19. Except for the characterization of Clinton,
the OP is RIGHT ON THE BUTTON.
The move to the "Left" does not even need to be mentioned.
The Democratic Party only needs to adopt these "Centrist" Issues as their unified platform:

"In recent polls by the Pew Research Group, the Opinion Research Corporation, the Wall Street Journal, and CBS News, the American majority has made clear how it feels. Look at how the majority feels about some of the issues that you'd think would be gospel to a real Democratic party:

1. 65 percent say the government should guarantee health insurance for everyone -- even if it means raising taxes.

2. 86 percent favor raising the minimum wage (including 79 percent of selfdescribed "social conservatives").

3. 60 percent favor repealing either all of Bush's tax cuts or at least those cuts that went to the rich.

4. 66 percent would reduce the deficit not by cutting domestic spending but by reducing Pentagon spending or raising taxes.

5. 77 percent believe the country should do "whatever it takes" to protect the environment.

6. 87 percent think big oil corporations are gouging consumers, and 80 percent (including 76 percent of Republicans) would support a windfall profits tax on the oil giants if the revenues went for more research on alternative fuels.

7. 69 percent agree that corporate offshoring of jobs is bad for the U.S. economy (78 percent of "disaffected" voters think this), and only 22% believe offshoring is good because "it keeps costs down."


http://alternet.org/wiretap/29788 /


Unfortunately, these positions (issues) ARE Far to the Left of today's Democratic Party Establishment.


The Democratic Party is a BIG TENT, but there is NO ROOM for those
who advance the agenda of THE RICH (Corporate Owners) at the EXPENSE of LABOR and the POOR.

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Dr Fate Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 01:44 PM
Response to Reply #19
21. That is my take as well. These are not even "far left" positions.
Edited on Thu Aug-03-06 01:48 PM by Dr Fate
They are pretty darn sensible and moderate. They could be even more popular postions if framed correctly.

We dont need to shift left so much as we need to stop shifting right while calling it "centrism."

For me it's more about growing pair and fighting the GOP/media propaganda hurled at ALL Democrats than it is about where an issue falls on the spectrum.
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NoPasaran Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 04:28 PM
Response to Reply #19
25. You call THAT left?
I demand the Democrats promise the abolition of private property, collectivization of agriculture and liquidation of the bourgeoisie or I'm voting Green!
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TheVirginian Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 01:42 PM
Response to Original message
20. What makes you think non-voters are liberal?
Most non-voters are apathetic, hence the non-voting. I'm sure there are some liberals out there who don't vote because they don't find a candidate that matches their principles, but if you shift the entire party to the left to court these handful of voters, you risk alienating scores of moderates, centrists, and independents.

I don't believe the country is conservative, I believe it is moderate. And I think the more a party runs to its base, whether its conservatives to the far right or liberals to the far left, it turns them off, resulting in either them voting for the other guys or not voting altogether. I think running to the left would have distratrous consequences.
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Recursion Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 02:23 PM
Response to Original message
23. "Left" and "Right" are obsolete concepts...
...based on what side of King Louis XIV various factions sat in court.

"Liberal" and "Conservative" are no better, since those of us who are "liberal" are on many issues very statist, while most "conservatives" seek fairly radical political and social change.

"Progressive" is also a fairly vacuous term since everyone, presumably, considers the changes they want to make as "progress".

Rather than worrying about whether a candidate is too far left, or not far left enough, we should be asking if he or she is:

* Honest
* Just
* Responsible
* Righteous
* Compassionate
* An advocate for the powerless
* Courageous
* Pragmatic

If we can find and elect leaders like that, the right policy decisions will follow.
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Dr Fate Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 02:26 PM
Response to Reply #23
24. I really like that framing of the matter. n/t
n/t
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Vidar Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-05-06 10:12 AM
Response to Reply #23
67. Well put.
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WildEyedLiberal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-05-06 01:56 PM
Response to Reply #23
77. Brilliant
And 100% true. Sadly our problem has not been that we lack leaders like that but that the media works in tandem with the Republican party to shape an Orwellian universe in which a decorated war hero was an effeminate coward and a draft-dodging AWOL drunk was a Real Brave Patriotic American. So it's not enough that our candidate actually HAVE integrity but that we - all of us - work tirelessly to cut through the lies, smears, and spin and let the truth out. If the media in 2004 had given honest, unbiased, factual reporting on each candidate's life, policy proposals, and character, Kerry would have won at least 40 states.
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MrBenchley Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 05:25 PM
Response to Original message
26. LOL!
Yes. we've got to appeal to the tiny clot of loonies whose Green party turns out to be a Republican funded dirty trick.

"So why have the Democrats been unable to win for so long?"
Because they're saddled with idiots on the far left. Also, Republican scheat.
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Bjorn Against Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-04-06 09:18 PM
Response to Reply #26
60. Yeah we know you prefer the far right
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MrBenchley Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-05-06 01:47 PM
Response to Reply #60
76. The far left hurts the Democratic party
more than the far right does.
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Bjorn Against Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-05-06 03:43 PM
Response to Reply #76
81. Oh yeah George Bush and Karl Rove would never do anything to hurt Dems
We all know the far right would never launch any unsubstantiated attacks against us or engage in crimes that would harm Democrats.

:sarcasm:

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MrBenchley Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Aug-06-06 09:05 AM
Response to Reply #81
83. They've got willing helpers on the far left
Edited on Sun Aug-06-06 09:05 AM by MrBenchley
There are plenty of unsubstantiated attacks against Democrats from the far left.

And the far left's party turns out to be a dirty trick wholly funded by the Republicans.
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SaveElmer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 07:17 PM
Response to Original message
29. When a party makes a sudden dramatic shift...
In either direction it is a recipe for electoral disaster...

Happened in 1964, happened in 1972...

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alvarezadams Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-04-06 12:33 AM
Response to Reply #29
41. So?
The GOP took a nosedive after going radically rw under Goldwater. When it raised to the surface it took an even MORE radical rw turn. Since Barry, no disaster. Quite the contrary.

Funny what a few dozen billions can do - it even turns the progressive party over to the right. Yet:http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.ph...
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SaveElmer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-04-06 08:32 AM
Response to Reply #41
46. Aided and abetted...
"Since Barry, no disaster. Quite the contrary."

Facilitated, and made real by the sharp leftward tilt of the Democratic Party in 1972!
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alvarezadams Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-04-06 12:18 PM
Response to Reply #46
50. That's it
You see a leftward tilt in the pary of the New Deal in 1972, which quite clearly shows your colours.

You are not a New Dealer, you are not a progressive. You are a conservative, most probably a Rockefeller Republican left an orphan by a party that has become even more RW than Europe's extreme RW parties.

Goferit dude, but just because your party left you an orphan doesn't mean that you can or should turn your adopted party into something it isn't.
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SaveElmer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-04-06 12:23 PM
Response to Reply #50
51. Not only do I see it...
It occurred....

Do you argue that the party did not take a leftward tilt from previous elections in 1960, 1964, and 1968...it obviously did...

I didn't say I wouldn't have supported McGovern (had I been old enough), but the tilt occurred, and we lost 49 states.

As to my politics...I am a Hubert Humphrey Democrat...read into that what you will!
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alvarezadams Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-04-06 12:45 PM
Response to Reply #51
52. Compared to what?
"Do you argue that the party did not take a leftward tilt from previous elections in 1960, 1964, and 1968...it obviously did..."

1960? With the center-rightist JFK? 1964 with the New Dealer LBJ? Both were more conservative than FDR. As for 1968.... Perhaps you need to show how exactly this took place because it isn't widely recognized.

"I didn't say I wouldn't have supported McGovern (had I been old enough), but the tilt occurred, and we lost 49 states. "

Are you aware of a concept called "cause and effect"?

"As to my politics...I am a Hubert Humphrey Democrat...read into that what you will!"

That would make you a Rockefeller Republican.
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alvarezadams Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-04-06 01:34 PM
Response to Reply #52
53. Rockefeller Republican...
...because youe purportedly espouse a progressive stance yet you consistently defend another.

I don't believe you.
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SaveElmer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-04-06 02:03 PM
Response to Reply #52
54. "That would make you a Rockefeller Republican."
I associate myself with the philosophy of a man who said in 1948 at the Democratic convention...


To those who say, my friends, to those who say, that we are rushing this issue of civil rights. I say to them we are 172 years late!

To those who say, to those who say that this civil-rights program is an infringement on states' rights, I say this: the time has arrived in America for the Democratic party to get out of the shadow of state's rights and walk forthrightly into the bright sunshine of human rights!


A man who was the originator of the proposal that later became the Peace Corps.

A man without who the 1964 Civil Rights act would not have been enacted...

A man without whom the Nuclear Test Ban Treaty may not have been adopted...

A man whose original idea for medical insurance for the elderly was eventually adopted when he was Vice-President...a little program known as medicare!

You can ascribe any label to him you like...but he was a Democrat's Democrat...and a great man!





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pat_k Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 08:42 PM
Response to Original message
30. It's not about left v. right. It's about weakness v. strength. . .
Edited on Thu Aug-03-06 08:44 PM by pat_k
We are NOT dealing with a divide between left v. right positions on "issues."

We are dealing with fascists v. anti-fascists; insiders v. outsiders; weakness v. strength.

The most serious problem members of the Democratic Party face is the perception that they are weak

Contrary to what many so-called Democratic strategists believe, the perception of weakness has NOTHING to do with stance on national security. It is rooted in:

1. The reticence that centrists seem to have when it comes to accusation and punishment. (Something the right clearly revels in.) Instead of going after wrong-doers, Democratic leaders seek to "investigate" or "make sure it doesn't happen again" (and the Republicans chuckle, "Gee, for a minute there, I though they were actually going to do something.")

2. The tendency to refrain from fighting the good fights for "practical" or "strategic" reasons. Members of the Democratic Party may believe they are "picking fights wisely," but to observers, it appears they spend all their time predicting defeat and "saving their energy" for fights they can win. Outsiders looking in do not see "wise selection," they see cowardice. When the rare "winnable fight" does materialize, it is often for some incremental step or practical end that inspires no one.

Impeachment Is Our Positive Agenda!

http://january6th.org/du-post-hope.html

Bottom line: You can't fight terrorism if you can't fight Bush. How can members of the Democratic Party expect Americans to believe they can stand up to terrorists, if they can't stand up to the man who terrorized Americans into war with threats of "mushroom clouds in 45 minutes"?

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MrBenchley Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 09:39 PM
Response to Reply #30
32. LOL! Nobody seems weaker than the far left
When they're not standing around sniveling publicly, they're busy screaming that everybody else is weak. Meanwhile, they're not fooling anyone.

And as far as standing up to terrorists, who was that who turned the last antiwar march into a stirring defense of Castro and terrorism? Why, it was the far left.

http://www.dailykos.com/story/2005/9/25/205136/412





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w4rma Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 09:30 PM
Response to Original message
31. WTF is "left"?
It means to me, "fair" trade or tarriffs not "free" trade. Protecting American wages and jobs from illegal "immigrants" and outsourcing. No additional gun control. Taxes on capital gains exactly equal to the income tax so that there is no advantage to shifting your own money around the stock market over doing the actual work. More protections for unions. Living wages. Bringing manufacturing (and the IT buisness) back into America.

What is "left" to you?
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sadiesworld Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 11:50 PM
Response to Reply #31
39. I don't even know if that means "left' anymore...
much less liberal. Of course, I agree with you completely...
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grasswire Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 09:41 PM
Response to Original message
34. may I suggest that you read a strategy plan at americanprospect?
It's the best thing I've seen out of Democratic strategists for eons. It's in four parts. The first part details why we haven't had landslides, considering that the American people agree with Democratic issues. Then comes the strategy.

If you are interested in a winning way, I urge you to read the whole thing.

http://www.prospect.org/web/page.ww?section=root&name=V...
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calico1 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 10:11 PM
Response to Original message
36. Democrats need to shift farther to the left in the
sense that they need to get back to representing traditional Democratic ideals and values. In other words, they need to move back to where they belong on issues. As the Republican Party has continued to move farther and farther to the right, many Democrats have kept moving right along behind them in an effort to be "Moderate" or "Centrist." The problem is the center keeps getting pushed farther to the right. Most Americans want what traditional Democratic ideas offer. Clean air, safe food, good public education, etc. But the Democrats have allowed the Republicans to control the conversation and to allow them to convince many misinformed voters to vote against their own interests, time and time again. And then they think they have to be more "Moderate" because that's what the voters want.
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unkachuck Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 10:12 PM
Response to Original message
37. the country wants change....
....the Dems are the only viable change around....we could demand a lot higher leftist price for that change if we were allowed too....

....the only people that don't want meaningful left-leaning change are the corporatists in both parties who stand to lose financially with the tax collector....
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eridani Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 10:19 PM
Response to Original message
38. I don't agree that they are liberals
They aren't conservatives either--just massively indifferent and tuned out. Anybody who does precinct walking knows this. Liberal policies will surely help these people, but we have a classical chicken-egg problem to deal with.
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lumberjack_jeff Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Aug-03-06 11:53 PM
Response to Original message
40. It's less about left and right...
... than it is about populism.

If it becomes clear that the party is *without excuse, exception or qualification* representing the interests of the citizens, we can push as liberal an agenda as we want.

That's the first step.
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Sparkly Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-04-06 01:57 AM
Response to Original message
43. There is a HUGE difference between the parties
on EVERY issue.

And yes, polls show the majority of voters are with us on issues.

So yes, it's about delivery of the message and fighting all the stupid stereotypes and lies and memes the GOP has spent over three decades and a "brazilion" dollars to root in the minds of the populus.

And no, there's no need for Democrats to "shift right."

But also no-- I don't believe that they have "shifted right." We have many strong liberals in our party, and John Kerry is one of them. They are more/less strong in their statements and votes largely (although not entirely) depending on the voters who elect and re-elect them, which is where OUR work comes in.

I'm as liberal as it gets, and as I see it, we ARE fired up!! Making the distinctions CLEAR helps us win; claiming the parties are alike helps THEM win.

And finally, in every election, it is about voting "AGAINST the other guy" because politics get so damned dirty now, BOTH sides get damaged in the minds of most voters. So they whine about "voting for the lesser of two evils" blah blah blah -- that is a constant. Always will be. Unfortunately, much of our job is to counter their negatives with the positives of our candidate AND get in the mud to damage theirs. For many, it's just "who's dirtier," and it's also "what do I have to lose?" The GOP is expert at convincing them they've got a LOT to lose if they vote Democratic (gays and gun-grabbers and terrorists, oh my!), that their guy has inexplicable redeeming features (God transformed him) and that ours is evil....

We need to organize, unite, and FIGHT. Our voices are at the grassroots, changing the minds of our neighbors, NOT whining at politicians to "be more liberal." They'll do what their voters call upon them to do, so our task is to influence the voters, and first and foremost, get the Democrats ELECTED or else we're just singing into the wind no matter WHAT our stripes as Democrats.
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MrBenchley Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-04-06 05:11 PM
Response to Reply #43
56. It's worth noting
Edited on Fri Aug-04-06 05:11 PM by MrBenchley
that the voters are over in the middle to the middle right. There are NO voters to be had over to the left.

What are we supposed to do, alienate a huge chunk of our current voter base to scoop up the tiny handful of loonies that vote for the Maharishi, Green and Socialist Worker parties?

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adwon Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-04-06 05:25 AM
Response to Original message
44. They tried this
Ask George McGovern, Walter Mondale, and Michael Dukakis how well it went.

Education, health care, and the economy have been successful for Democrats since 1968. Foreign policy and national defense have not. Why? America, in general, is more hawkish than the post-68 Democratic elite (and activists). When the Cold War was a major issue, which it wasn't in 1976 when compared to ethics, Democratic presidential candidates failed miserably. Why? They erred on the side of dovishness. If Democrats run on a pacifist platform, prepare to see electoral sweeps for the GOP that will set records.

When the GOP ran on platforms of rolling back communism, they got spanked. Why? People found containment to be the smarter option. The same is true today. Running on a platform of "OMG BUSH LIED AND IMPEACH IMPEACH IMPEACH" is a sure loser. Running on a platform that points out the failures of his foreign policy, lays out credible alternatives, and aspires to the owl (I'll explain at the end) will be far more successful.

I see foreign policy as having (at least) three distinct positions. Hawks, doves, and owls. Hawks tend to fight it out to the bloody end. Doves tend to oppose war, as a general rule. Owls would prefer not to fight, but will. Owls also know when it's time to say enough and be done.

P.S. If you believe in the Wicked Witch of Diebold, best you just ignore this post. It doesn't contain anything of value for you.
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Douglas Carpenter Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-04-06 10:18 PM
Response to Reply #44
61. in what way was Walter Mondale or Michael Dukakis left-wing; by any
wild stretch of the imagination? I can see how someone might perceive the McGovern campaign of 1972 as left-wing. But even that was outlandishly exaggerated.

Barry Goldwater was viewed as far right in 1964. Sixteen years later someone solidly to the right of Goldwater won by a comfortable margin and then won reelection by a landslide. And that was just the beginning of right-wing domination. Now a party that would make Barry Goldwater sound like a liberal in many respects dominates all three branches of the government and the media as well.

What might not sell so well in one time does change over time. It would seem to me that if there ever was a time that the American people were ready for the message "Come home America", it would be now. It might even save the world from catastrophe.
_____________

setting the historic record straight:

"Everything faded into mist. The past was erased, the erasure was forgotten, the lie became truth" George Orwell from 1984

The reality is that after 72 -- EVERY SINGLE Democratic Party presidential campaign EVERY SINGLE Democratic Party national campaign was based on the so-called "centrist strategy" -EVERY SINGLE one without any exceptions whatsoever.

The reality is that after 72 the Democratic Party has steadily moved rightward except on certain social issues such as abortion or gay right which the DLC and "centrist" wing also supports.

The Carter Presidency was already practicing fairly conservative economics during his term. We can look at his shift in tax policy and appointment to Chair of the Fed and he did significantly increase military spending. This is what lead to calls from some liberals for Kennedy to enter the race; a big mistake in my opinion.

Mondale did support a raise in taxes. But he also supported keeping most of Reagan's tax and spending cuts and to increase military spending. He certainly did not run on a program of sweeping liberal reforms.

Dukakis would have been very much a fiscal-conservative/socially liberal/ technocrat type politician. I don't know what would have put him over the line to be called a "New Democrat". Although I am sure if he had won that would have done it.

The Democratic controlled Congress during this period did give President Reagan and President H.W. Bush most of what they wanted.

Any review of candidates and their positions and the support the Reagan and Bush I Administration would verify this.

The facts remain:

1. In 1973 Robert Strauss was elected party chair representing a shift to the right. He then purged as many "McGovernites" as he could and pushed the party rightward. link: http://www.thenation.com/doc/20050131/borosage

2. Carter and his people solidified "centrist" control over the party starting at the convention of 1976 were they modified the rules and procedures.

3. Carter in 1980 ran a more conservative program in 1980 than he did in 1976 which was already much more conservative than the program of 1972. In 1976 during his debate with Gerald Ford he indicated that he would reduce military spending marginally. In 1980 debating Ronald Reagan he cited his increased military spending.

4. In 1984 the party establishment nominated former Vice President Mondale; a Humphrey type liberal/hawk who supported increasing the military budget 7% beyond Reagan levels and proposed keeping most of Reagan's tax and spending cuts.

5. Michale Dukakis was a fiscal-conservative, pro-business but moderately liberal "New Democrat". I suppose that was the beginning of the "New Democrat" domination of the party. Gov. Dukakis was as most only moderately-liberal in the same sense that John Kerry is only moderately liberal.

some important links:

1972 Democratic Party Platform: http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/showplatforms.php?platin...

1976 Democratic Party Platform:
http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/showplatforms.php?platin...

1980 Democratic Party Platform:
http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/showplatforms.php?platin...

1984 Democratic Party Platform:
http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/showplatforms.php?platin...

1988 Democratic Party Platform:
http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/showplatforms.php?platin...



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alvarezadams Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-05-06 06:01 AM
Response to Reply #61
62. THANK YOU
It was about time that someone cleared the air on that count. Good luck with the DLC crowd however - I've posted a few of those links at one time or another and they ignore them completely.

Ever read this? http://www.prospect.org/print/V12/7/dreyfuss-r.html
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MrBenchley Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-05-06 12:22 PM
Response to Reply #62
72. So how DID that Kucinich juggernaut do?
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alvarezadams Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-05-06 04:03 PM
Response to Reply #72
82. Shot down by the
corporate whores.
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MrBenchley Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Aug-06-06 09:06 AM
Response to Reply #82
84. And the dog ate his homework
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alvarezadams Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Aug-06-06 12:27 PM
Response to Reply #84
85. That's your excuse?
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MrBenchley Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Aug-06-06 01:46 PM
Response to Reply #85
86. No, that's how phony your excuse is
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adwon Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-05-06 06:11 AM
Response to Reply #61
63. Perception is reality
They were all perceived as leftist, babykilling, peaceniks. That's a fact. They carried 141 electoral votes between them in 3 separate elections. Hell, that wasn't enough to win the presidency when LINCOLN was running. Was this really because they were 'centrist'? Please.

If you want to represent the American people, you have to know them. Mondale could talk about defense spending and Dukakis could ride around in a tank, but it's what the other Democrats are doing during the 4 years previous that goes a long way toward defining them.

Reality is not necessarily the actual. It's more often what people believe to be real than what is real.
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Douglas Carpenter Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-05-06 06:55 AM
Response to Reply #63
64. indeed that is true. perception and reality are frequently miles apart
Edited on Sat Aug-05-06 07:00 AM by Douglas Carpenter
but nothing encourages this outrageously incorrect perception more than when certain Democrats repeat right-wing Republican talking points.

Even in the case of McGovern in April 1972 Time Magazine was calling him the prairie populist and ran stories about how ordinary people from all walks of life had dropped what they were doing to campaign for the "voice of compassion from the heartland". Two months later he was the candidate of "amnesty, acid and abortion". Who was spreading this nonsense? Well, mostly it was fellow Democrats.

In the case of Mondale and Dukakis their labels as "left-wing" or ultra-liberal wouldn't even pass the laugh test. Yet there are no shortage of Democrats willing and able to repeat this nonsense.
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Tsiyu Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-04-06 11:20 AM
Response to Original message
48. See this thread
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OzarkDem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-05-06 09:56 AM
Response to Reply #48
65. We just need to instill fear in voters
Edited on Sat Aug-05-06 09:57 AM by OzarkDem
let them know how much of their future (retirement, health care, education, economy) and their country is at risk under continued GOP rule.

And we really must get tougher on the news media, they're still out there shilling for Bush.
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Tsiyu Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-05-06 10:31 AM
Response to Reply #65
69. There needs to be change in Dem leadership
in many areas.

Locally, the Dems do not want to associate with anyone but khaki-clad White Christians.

They are socially afraid to be themselves or to let anyone "NEW" in.

This needs to change pronto, because these people are not maintaining the databases that the Repukes have. Repukes got homeschool moms and their kids to make 75,000 phone calls in Knoxville, IIRC for this latest election.

You see, the Repukes use every last person - even the fringe - to their advantage.

Will you get everyone you embrace to actually commit? Hell no, but you keep reaching out and give them something constructive to do when they do show an interest.

Fear has motivated this party for too long, and fear is the other side's game, I'll say with all due respect. We need to instill hope and purpose.

There are a lot of kids (and older folks) out there who could update databases and make phone calls and refine websites and come up with campaigns that appeal to voters. There is a lot of talent out there and the harvest-time is here. You've got vast numbers of pissed-off people out there.

Harold Ford has been running real-life ads, showing him at the gas pump, talking about issues Americans care about, while Corker has run on this "I'm a great guy" series and immigration. While I applaud Corker for his positive approach (pure meanness won't wash in Middle TN for the most part and Corker was a well-liked Mayor) the immigration commercial - him strolling along a Texas border -
didn't do squat to endear him to most.

I do not prefer Ford. There was another candidate who should have received my vote. But I gave it to him in this primary because at least he knows what to say to Americans. A bit more money and more signs and a continuing effort to BE REAL and tell Americans the truth and what you will do to change that truth and FORD Can get to Congress.

And I hope once he's there he changes his homophobic, anti-choice, anti-consumer ways. If not, I'll kick his ass.

Just a joke, just a joke. :kick:


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beltanefauve Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-05-06 01:20 PM
Response to Reply #65
73. Sad but true
I'd venture to say that "Middle America" tends to vote for whoever is doing the better job of scaring the bejeezus out of them. Not only are the Repugs better fear-mongers, they also have short, sweet, three-syllable catch phrases such as, "Cut and run", "tax and spend", etc. in their favor.
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happydreams Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-04-06 11:31 AM
Response to Original message
49. K&R. I agree. Why not have a clear distinction between choices?
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skeeters2525 Donating Member (159 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-04-06 02:08 PM
Response to Original message
55. Bullshit
The left wing turned their back on Gore and Kerry.

Screw them.

I reach out for everyone.

Liberal, Moderate, Commie, Green, Religious Nut.
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LincolnMcGrath Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Aug-04-06 08:39 PM
Response to Reply #55
59. Reality!
99% of voters voted for Kerry or * in 04 (About 1/3 of 1 PERCENT nader)

96 1/4% of voters voted for Gore or * in 00 (About 2.7% nader)


Keep blaming phantom Naderites, and reaching for religious nut cases. :eyes:

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FREEDOMRULES3 Donating Member (45 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-05-06 10:30 AM
Response to Original message
68. your truly kidding
i have been a Dem all of my life. it sickens me the way the party has gone so far left already. fact is you all can forget about ever winning anything back (fact is dems will lose seats this election) due to the fact that you have drifted into kookyville. i cant stand the republicans but truthfully i also cant stand the far left freaks either. Clinton won because he was a moderate , and until the party comes back towards the center, i'm afraid were all in for a pukey decade or longer.
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SaveElmer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-05-06 10:39 AM
Response to Reply #68
70. "You can forget about winning anything back..."
Shouldn't that be "WE"!

Thought you were a Democrat!
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Iris Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-05-06 02:40 PM
Response to Reply #70
80. Noticed that slip, too and here's one better -
Edited on Sat Aug-05-06 02:40 PM by Iris
"you have drifted into kookyville"

News flash - this is the Democratic UNDERGROUND, not the official site of the Democratic Party!
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Name removed Donating Member (0 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-05-06 02:10 PM
Response to Reply #68
78. Deleted message
Message removed by moderator. Click here to review the message board rules.
 
citizen snips Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Aug-06-06 01:52 PM
Response to Reply #68
87. The democrats are not far left
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gulliver Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-05-06 10:55 AM
Response to Original message
71. They should shift to leadership.
Edited on Sat Aug-05-06 10:56 AM by gulliver
There's no great untapped pool of voters to be had by "shifting left" (whatever that means). If the Dems show leadership, if they tend the country well (as they always have in the past), then they will win. Right now the Dems seem to have low morale, because the country drifted into madness for a while.

Times have changed. The American people feel their country's hull scraping on the shoals. The fear of sinking is in the air. The people know that Captain Bush and his crew of GOP Congressional idiots have steered America into trouble. The Dems have a responsibility to take over again if they are true leaders.

All this left and right, liberalism and conservatism stuff is just lazy emotionalism where the vast majority is concerned. Choosing sides is a last resort, but the first resort of the lazy and ignorant. It is all they know how to do.
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