Thursday, March 19, 2015

Dear Democracy For America

Jim Dean Unsubscribe

Run Warren Run
Drift --

For the past three months, voters all over the country -- 311,465 and counting -- have been making the case to the nation, to the media, to political leaders, and to Elizabeth Warren herself, that there's a surging grassroots movement ready for the day Senator Warren announces a run for president.
Senator Warren has said "No" more different ways and in more different venues than I can count. And yet every damn day you continue stalk this woman using the same logic as a date-rapist; "No matter how many times she says it, she doesn't really mean 'no'".

And every day you ask me for money to help you continue stalking her.

So, on behalf of creeped out Democrats everywhere...


DeistPaladin said...

While I absolutely agree, some of this may be born of the collective groaning on the left with the seeming inevitability of the Clinton nomination. At least with Obama, liberals had the illusion (or perhaps it was self-deception) that we were finally going to have some representation in Washington as opposed to doing our usual hold-our-nose-and-vote-for-the-conserva-dem. With Hillary, there will not even be a pretense that we'll get anything but center-right leadership.

They should stop pestering Warren, I agree, but I understand the desperation, "please, please, please, anybody but HER" which doubtless lies at the heart of their efforts.

Mike Lumish said...

While it sucks to be a member of a despised minority, the cold hard fact is that we Progressives do not have the electoral power to put our own candidate for dog catcher into office. This is why I have long advocated for supporting the Center Left candidate over the Hard Right candidate, to keep the patronage army out of the hands of the evildoers, while we labor unceasingly to build a Progressive movement worthy of the name. Of course, that last bit is where we fall down: some people are more interested in spinning pleasant fantasies, or making grand but futile gestures, than in the hard nosed business of coalition building.

Marc McKenzie said...

Mike, you took the words right out of my mouth. And this: "some people are more interested in spinning pleasant fantasies, or making grand but futile gestures, than in the hard nosed business of coalition building" is absolutely correct.

Occupying a park will get nothing done--but building a movement with the end goal of getting people to vote works (see the Civil Rights Movement). I like Senator Warren, but she has repeatedly stated that she is not running, and I'm tired of the constant droning that she's going to enter the race and kick Hillary to the curb.

Fiddlin Bill said...

Remember the lesson of McGovern--the Democratic candidate must be electable.

DeistPaladin said...

I'd like to ask, with regard to the last three comments, how many times does conventional wisdom have to fail before people realize that conventional wisdom got it wrong?

On the GOP side, they continue to peddle the economic snake oil of trickle down economics that they have over the last 30 years. It's allowed to be an unchallenged assertion that tax cuts for the wealthy create jobs, stimulate the economy and trickle down to all parts of the economy. The last 30 years have shown that they do none of the above.

On the Democrat side, the political snake oil is "ignore the base and run to the center". The theory is that the left has no one else to vote for and you'll pick up centrist voters. That strategy has been consistently tried for about 20 years now. In fairness, Clinton made it work by the force of his Charisma and the "center" was a good deal to the left of where it is now. How's that been working for us lately? 2004? 2010? 2014?

Here's why it doesn't work and you don't have to be a professional campaign strategist to understand it:

Conservative voters are mindless zombies who will always hate Democrats no matter how much they try to reach across the aisle. You have lost them. Write them off.

"Centrist" and "Undecided" voters, assuming they even bother to vote at all (about half the eligible voters in America shamefully don't and you can guess they are disproportionately represented by this group), will tend to be "low information voters". There may be some thoughtful, cautious centrists who seek to make an informed decision but this is a small piece of the pie. Low information voters will go with simple slogans that fit on a bumper sticker. This means if you have a muddled, nuanced, centrist message of "well, I'm kinda conservative too but, you know, there's a lot to be said for..." Sorry, you lost them. They don't understand nuance. They only understand bumper stickers. That's why they'll vote GOP over the centrist Democrat.

Last we have liberal voters. Now much has been said, and I agree, that even if the conserva-dem alternative stinks, we should hold our noses and vote for him/her because otherwise the GOP candidate wins. The key word here is "should". And low information voters "should" get more information. And the 50% that stay home "should" get out and vote. This is called "wishing". Wishing isn't good strategy.

Like it or not, liberal voters get demoralized when they get repeatedly bitch slapped. They "shouldn't" but they do. People need leadership. They "shouldn't" but they do. They don't need a pony. They don't need fantasies. They just need to feel like someone is fighting for them as hard as we fight to elect them.

So why not try a couple popular progressive ideas? Just try it once, DNC. You might be surprised how well it works.