Dublin Saab

Cars, politics, sports and what not from my view. (Closed Sundays and Holidays)

Tuesday, March 01, 2005

DNC Chair: "Republicans evil"

Since Dean's installing as the new DNC chair I have heard a lot in his defense. Mostly people saying that is reality he was a very moderate governor while running Vermont and it's only the vast right-wing conspiracy that has labeled him as a "radical". If so then what to make of this? The Lawrence Journal-World is quoting Dean as saying, "This is a struggle of good and evil. And we're the good." in reference to the struggles between the Democratic and Republican parties in the US.

So then it's "moderate" Democrats that consider Republican's evil? If so how can we except there to be any reasoned dialog in congress? After all you don't negotiate with evil people, you simply subvert them.


At March 01, 2005 10:57 PM, Blogger The Evil Jeremy. said...

Or, you could interpret that as talking about the hard core conservetives he mentioned earlier in the speech. Besides, since when was a little combatitive rhetoric unusual in fundraising speech? I think there's a little molehill=mountain in you argument. I'm not sold on Dean as a great leader but I hardly find his comments here that wacky. It's a party event, for chrissake.

At March 01, 2005 11:25 PM, Blogger Dublin Saab said...

Combative rhetoric or idiotic negativism that while getting cheers form the party faithful will do nothing to make the party feel inviting to the middle ground. Calling the other party "evil" is just plain dumb. Wether he believes it or not is irrelevant. Rousing the party faithful isn't going to get it done. They where pretty God dammed roused last November and couldn't get it done. If Dean (if mind you... if) goes around for the next 3 years calling Republicans "evil" and that he "hates" them then even Hillary might not be able to pull off a win.

At March 02, 2005 1:01 AM, Blogger The Evil Jeremy. said...

If the middle ground were not alienated by two GWB election campaigns espousing a quasi-theocratic agenda or describing decorated war heros as traitors and war criminals (not by Bush himself, but by plenty of others), I hardly think a few fighting words from Dean will sink anybody's candidacy. And what's up with the pre-coronation of Hillary as the Dem's nominee in '08? Gore may well run again, Brock Obama may (prematurely) throw his hat in the ring, Wesley Clark may have found something to actually say, etc., etc. I remember the last pre-coronation--Jack Kemp, following Clinton's victory in '92. What came of that? It's a long season. Hillary certainly seems to have the party base appeal on paper, but her candidacy may well prove to be a Northeast illusion, just as Bill Bradley's was in 2000. I am never comfortable with these "heir apparent" scenarios, especially in non-encumbent elections in which everybody and their sister decides to run. I just don't buy the "bad karma" argument that bashing the other side of the hill costs votes. Dean is not the Dems' problem; a perceived antithesis to morality and an inability to control the terms of debate are much greater ones. Dems have counterpunched their way through the last four years and, since they are at present no Ali, have had their shit handed to them. They have been successfully labeled as the party of high taxation, lack of military resolve, and moral laxity. They need to argue that: a) taxes buy things people like; b) being the traditional party of social justice is not immoral, and; c) militarism is a necessary but hardly exclusive component for solving global ills. A couple of nice talking points would be that the progressive movement of the 19th century which liberals are the heir to was largely comprised of devoutly religious folk; the most aggressively militant anti-communists pre-Reagan were Kennedy and Johnson; social spending costs ducats, but lowers crime; the war on drugs (always a more enthusiastic Republican effort) is the ultimate statist program: wasteful, ineffective, and quintessentially nanny-like. They need to redefine themselves to resemble something moderates like yourself recognize as the party of progress, and not simply the party of protest. As is, they appeal to the poor, who will always vote for them, and the highly educated, who have a decidedly Marxist bent, but not to average Joe who fears terrorism and unemployment more than the present authoritarian leanings of state. Too much market surveying and too little sincerity goes on in their campaign councils, and Americans smell that like they smell decomposing rodents in the cellar. A little less Rousseau and a little more Michael Totten would go a long way toward selling the message. Oh, yeah, and a little less support for Ward Churchill and a little more for that Ivy League guy. I don't know if they've got that in them. But a guy down on all scorecards can do one of two things: 1)throw low blows, and hope the ref doesn't catch it or; 2)listen to the corner guy and do something different. I think (and you'll agree) that the next four years have a lot to tell us about which direction is chosen. Bill's stock is low; I'm not sure he can do much for his wife. I'm not sure either that the South will vote for a woman. '08(and the '06 midterms, of course) will tell us heaps about how well the DNC is catching on.

Now, if the present events in the Middle East are not simply a mirage, and we have five or six democracies instead of one, Bush is a legend with some serious coattails. That itself alters the dynamic plenty. I'll have to be the guy that's sorry I didn't vote for him. But we'll leave that for another discussion.

At March 04, 2005 9:01 AM, Blogger Natalie said...

Wow. A very insightful post, Centerleft. I'll have to look up this Michael Totten character.

Dublin Saab, as a former member of the media, I have to side a bit with Jeremy's point on where the remarks took place. The media infiltrates everywhere these days, including closed door Harvard meetings and party fundraisers. You have to put the remarks in context, and having lost our second close election to the Republicans, there are a lot of hard feeling and built up resentment. Maybe more this election since it wasn't as close in the popular vote, one of the threads we clung to after the last election.
I don't agree that all Republicans are evil, but I think the leadership is using a time-tested method of trying to galvanize their group by polarizing the us vs. them argument and of course, the overuse of that method is part of the Democrats' current problem.

And, this aisle-reaching, bipartisanship argument is constantly used to manipulate the other party or candidate into being shameful about promoting their own agenda. It's as old as Tom (# 3) and John (#2), who alternated between being bosom buddies and disgruntled archenemies during their political careers.


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