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What if Washingon Democrats and their insiders are only reacting to actual voter trends

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HardWorkingDem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-06-11 11:36 AM
Original message
What if Washingon Democrats and their insiders are only reacting to actual voter trends
I tried to get a discussion going on voter trends in a different thread, but it seems like people here are avoiding this topic like the plague.

After a local election where voters voted back into office a majority of the same people who got us to where we are at, it makes me wonder if these politicians all understand voter trends better than we voters appreciate.

For example, it seems like politicians in Washington know the inside angle on who will vote, who may vote and the group that will never vote. And the older I get, I am starting to believe that the Dem side has more people who will NEVER vote than those on the Rethug side. On top of this, I also believe it is clear that there are more people on the Dem side than those on the Rethug side. I really do not believe this country is a center-right country. I believe that has just been marketed that way and explained that way because of better message massaging.

And reasons like these are why I think the Democratic Party too often chases the same people as the Rethugs. I mean, why throw your eggs in the basket of an unsteady electorate that is unpredictable, non-supportive and clumsy at politics (i.e., Russ Feingold).
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bemildred Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-06-11 11:44 AM
Response to Original message
1. Washington Democrats consider it their business to create and manage "voter trends".
I would love it if we could get them to react to actual voter opinions, but that is not what they do, they consider it a failure if we force them to do something they don't want to, and start working immediately to make it fail.
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OHdem10 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-06-11 11:48 AM
Response to Original message
2. The trend if there is any has been developed by the Republicans.
But I say they have chosen to follow the Republican
Lead and drink the Republican Kool Aid.

if this is such a Center Right Country, how is it
that Wisconsin has overnight produced enough Democrats
to put a State Supreme Court seat a dead heat
and the otherelection the Democrat won giving Walker
a real stab.

Ws have a party who permits the opposition to set
the pace and take the lead. If they follow anything
it is GOP in DC--not the people. If they had put
forth half the effort Wisconsin has shown, they would
still have both houses. Their mistake is believing
everything the Republicans tell them.
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patrice Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-06-11 11:49 AM
Response to Original message
3. People have good reasons to be afraid of losing everything, no matter what they think is right. They
continue to expect that it is someone else's responsibility to change things so that they can then support what is right without risking any consequences to themselves.

Some people in Washington understand this and ARE working on trying to make these folks less afraid, trying to give them more rationally justifiable reasons to support change. Unfortunately, at our level of knowledge, or more precisely due to our lack of certain essence -tial information, these folks are almost completely undistinguishable from those who are afraid tooo and, hence, ARE selling the rest of us out for their own gain.

Unfortunately, in our efforts to under-cut those who DESERVE to be under-cut, we also under-cut those who ARE in fact on our side, thus weakening their bargaining positions with the opposition and making their efforts on our behalf that much less effective and driving them more and more into their backrooms.

Simply put, if your declared intent is to destroy someone (in this case by witholding your dollars, work, and vote) they have absolutely NO reason to integrate you into their efforts, in fact, you become time not well spent to them, so your objectives become less and less and less relevant.
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patrice Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-06-11 11:55 AM
Response to Original message
4. You ARE right: people here DO avoid this topic like the plague because they are either
looking to build a political base or are looking for a political base to follow.

I have been a member ever since 2002 and am, currently, kind of a leper around here, because I refuse to demonize Obama. I would greatly appreciate it if you would continue this discussion whenever you feel like it and if I see it I will participate.

:hi: buddy! :hi:
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kenny blankenship Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-06-11 12:02 PM
Response to Original message
5. How come they didn't react to 2006 and 2008?
No no, they react to the MONEY.
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Old and In the Way Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-06-11 12:03 PM
Response to Original message
6. What I find fascinating is the seemingly lack of public support for Republican policies.
Edited on Wed Apr-06-11 12:10 PM by Old and In the Way
Where were the counter-demonstrations in Wisconsin that supported the Republican legislative actions? Given the results last night, there should have comparable demonstrations of people, in the streets - not a few thousand stage managed by the Republican astroturf organizations. I guess that must be part of their natural aversion to socialist type demonstrations...they quietly stand with the Republicans and against their neighbors. Part of that 'rugged individualist/libertarian' concept that they think they fit. The irony, IMHO, is that - were government to cease to exist at all levels in our life - the survivors will be those that can form communities to share skills (socialism!)...the rugged individualist will quickly find that they are incapable of adapting to this new evolutionary reality.

Or maybe, Wisconsin has more multi-millionaires than I realized. Well over 700,000 it looks like. I'm convinced that the general public hasn't suffered enough yet. Yes, we are aware of what's coming...but the vast majority of voting Republicans seem oblivious to the changes that the Republican Party have in store for all of us. When they finally do wake up to the new reality, it's going to be way too late to do anything to fix it. That train is leaving the station and it ain't coming back anytime soon.

Personally, I think the Republican voter motivation has less to do with actual policy consequences (consequences that they have yet to really experience firsthand), but a visceral hatred of Democrats. A hatred borne of decades-long rhetorical conditioning. I see this as a sports metaphor. You have a lifelong investment in your 'team' and, by Gawd, no amount of cheating or unsportsmanlike conduct by your team will ever be enough to get you to root for the opposition.
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OHdem10 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-06-11 12:28 PM
Response to Reply #6
7. And we are constantly fed---"this is a center right country".
They can say this and get away with it because of the
Apathy in the Democratic Party. Look at Wisconsin, Walker
and the GOP won the last election. No doubt about it.

But look at all the Democrats they were able to bring
out in this elecion for the Court. The last I read
Kloppe is ahead. and one month ago she was hardly known.
Grassroots action like this and the Democrats would still
be in charge. Hope we all learn a lesson.
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HardWorkingDem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-06-11 12:55 PM
Response to Original message
8. Partially the answer! - V. Fair article, Joseph Stiglitz, Of the 1%, By the 1%, For The 1%
Edited on Wed Apr-06-11 12:58 PM by HardWorkingDem
Well, I cracked open the May issue of Vanity Fair and found this article....couldn't find a link yet.

It is a must-read.
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JDPriestly Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-06-11 01:14 PM
Response to Original message
9. I think people are very angry. They voted against Bush because they thought they were angry
Edited on Wed Apr-06-11 01:25 PM by JDPriestly
at him. In fact, they are angry about the excessive military spending, the fact that pay is not rising as fast as prices and the outsourcing of jobs and importing of products. In other words, it's the economy, Stupid.

Obama has continued Bush's economic policies and never really denounced those of them that caused the horrendous economic plight of most Americans.

So, Obama was sent a message in the November 2010 election --- which he has utterly ignored.

The Democratic Party loses because it does not sell the progressive message.

Conservative Republicans have spent fortunes and inundated the air and TV waves with their "message." Democrats have cowered in the corner.

That is why voters vote conservative. The progressive/liberal message is too cowardly. Change that, and we will win. And the change has to be nationwide and solid.
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socialist_n_TN Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-06-11 01:18 PM
Response to Original message
10. For me, it's not a problem of following trends......
It's that most of these guys, especially in the upper echelon, are like old generals. They fight the LAST war rather than the one that's going on now.

In this particular case we have a Dem leadership that is still in Reagan Era "survival" mode which means they go DINO or Bluedog every time there is a choice to be made between moderately conservative positions and progressive ones. Yes, that was what it took to SURVIVE (and win an occasional national election) in the 90s/early Aughts, but that SHOULD have changed starting in '06.

The '06 election was what showed that the public was looking for a different direction. And that held true for 4 years. The problems was the public didn't GET that different direction. They got the same old Reagan Era survivalist bullshit FROM the Dems. This lack of REAL change (maybe I should coin an an acronym-CINO, Change In Name Only) after 4 years of Dems setting the agenda, resulted in disappointment and the Republican wins in '10.
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TayTay Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-06-11 01:50 PM
Response to Original message
11. I think you have a jumble of things in this one basket
Do you mind if I sort them out a bit into specific categories we can talk about?

Voter apathy and turnout:
Americans vote when they see it in their interest to vote. Rarely is this done as a positive action. Americans will turnout against something more than they will turn out for something. 2006, 2008 and 2010 were "anti" elections and anti against incumbents. Voters did not return the party of wrongdoers to office in 2010. They turned out an incumbency that wasn't giving them any satisfaction in action.

The poor don't vote
Democrats supposedly represent the working people of America, the poor and the downtrodden. These are exactly the electorate that can be the hardest to convince that they have the power to change things. Arguments have been made that one of the best strategies of conservatives in media is not the push to invigorate their followers but the push to convince people that individual action is hopeless and that nothing they do can change "the system." The elctorate is convinced that they are lowly pawns in a system that will ignore them no matter which candidates or parties get elected.

Advertising
Americans like to believe that they are all above average and will be special, wealthy and influential some day. They are appealed to on this basis. They are also told that if they are not successful, that someone or some group is responsible for this because it can't be their fault or the fault of powerful groups or interests that exist in a class structure. (Class is a forbidden above board discussion topic in America, though it permeates politics and thinking below boards.) American history can be seen, in some ways, as a history of which groups were on the bottom and blameable for problems at which point in time. (The groups held at fault change, the idea that it's okay to blame groups for holding down virtuous others is a steady thread of our history.) It is always easier to blame "the other" for failure than to examine the conditions for failure and see which are systemic and can be fought and which are due to individual error. Republicans tend to advertise to this meme.

Republicans exploit the old seller's principle of presenting things in 3's better than Democrats do. When selling something, and this was a staple of coffin sales for example for a long time, present 3 options. High-end and pricy, low-end and ugly and a middle way that is closer to the higher end in price than the lower. People usually pick the middle way, even if it means they are spending more than they intended to spend. They are not spendthrifts because they didn't go for the higher end, but not low lifes because they didn't pick the cheapest one just because it was cheaper. They go for the middle one because it represents a compromise between affordability and quality. Democrats tend to give only 2 options, which doesn't give the option of choice and allow for the option of morality. Voters like to be given then options, even if one of them is not really a choice.
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