Friday, September 23, 2005

You can’t win elections if your attitude is condescension...

You can’t win elections if your attitude is condescension
I don’t care how swell your ideology is; if you directly express, merely allude to, or simply feel condescension towards the majority of regular Americans, you’re going to lose a great many of your elections. This goes way beyond ideology. If Republicans act like this they’ll get the boot just like Democrats.

BY Michael Lind

[T]he Democrats are no longer the party of the working class so much as the party of the urban professional elite and the working poor. Thanks to reforms backed by Democrats, the working poor have been removed from the income tax rolls and their wages are boosted by the earned income tax credit. Most working-class Americans, however, make too much money to benefit from either reform. The Democrats have also fought unsuccessfully for universal healthcare schemes. But most working-class Americans already have health insurance provided by their employers; rising out-of-pocket health costs, not coverage, is their chief concern. And there is no consensus among Democrats about what to do to prevent the growth of healthcare costs from continuing to outstrip productivity growth. The Republicans do have an idea, but it is a bad one - personal health savings accounts, which would deter many Americans from consuming necessary as well as unnecessary healthcare.

Why have liberal Democrats in recent decades done so much for the largely urban working poor and relatively little for the suburban working class? A cynic might suggest that the combination of liberal anti-sprawl policies and liberal support for mass unskilled immigration, legal and illegal, creates a seller’s market in houses and a buyer’s market in servants in New York, Boston, and San Francisco.

In any event, the quasi-Marxist assumption that voters merely seek to maximise their economic interests ignores the perennial importance of the politics of identity. There never was a time when working-class Americans voted for liberals whose values they rejected but whose economic programmes enticed them. Before the federal judiciary nationalised issues like abortion, gay rights and censorship, beginning in the 1960s, these controversies were part of state and local politics, not national politics. Conservative Catholics in the midwest or southern populists could vote for social conservatism in state and local elections, while voting for New Deal economic policies at the federal level. Thanks to federalism, New Deal liberals like Roosevelt, Truman, Kennedy and Johnson took positions on the economy and foreign policy; they did not have to take stands on abortion or gay rights. The very success of liberals in nationalising these issues has worked against them in a country in which self-described liberals are a minority, outnumbered by self-described moderates and conservatives.

Even the most appealing economic programme cannot save American liberalism if it is associated with values that most Americans reject.

the ANGRY left

Taranto, Predictably, Targets Post-Katrina Reaction of "Angry Left." But Republicans Were Critical, Too editor James Taranto has this shtick.

He talks about the "angry left." Rarely is there a Taranto column, or a Taranto radio or television appearance, in which he doesn't slip in that phrase several times.

In Taranto's world, the "angry left" is not just Michael Moore, Daily Kos or Randi Rhodes. It's anyone who criticizes President Bush or his policies. No matter how legitimate the claim, if someone on the left side of the aisle dares dissent, they're "angry."

It's a variation of an empty conservative spin line, offered over and over, that liberals and Democrats "hate Bush." When you start at that point, a conservative pundit doesn't have to go far before making the claim that liberals and Democrats are rooting for Bush to fail, which in turn implies that liberals and Democrats hate America.


“if someone on the left side of the aisle dares dissent, they're "angry."

(well fellas lets see, I shall let you libs make my point for me)

“I can barely tolerate these bloggers who shoot arrows at the commentary, without providing any examples, specific or otherwise, Why do you feel the commentary is so "off course," or "utterly stupid?"
Don't talk through your butthole. Provide some examples, which is less than much of the commentary you are apparantely bitching about has done. It seems to me you are more offended that some one could be so justifiably outraged at what the Bush Administration has "accomplished."

“But the Left at least has a good reason to be angry as the issues are now more significant than an out-of-wedlock blow job: Iraq, hurricane response, a huge surplus transformed into a monsterous deficit, etc.”

“Of course we're ANGRY...and we've had reason to be since the SCOTUS decided the election of 2000...BLA BLA BLA”

“Cronyism rules!”

“It's all one big damn patronage system. If you want to work at a high cabinet level position for this Administration all you have to do is be married to...BLA BLA BLA”

“What does capturing Bin Laden mean to Bush Administration?
Not a goddamn thing. They NEVER intended to capture him, bin Laden's family is an important part of the Bush family crime cartel......BLA BLA BLA”

“Republicans now all fall into one or more of three categories: Greedy, Racist, and/or Religiously Insane.....BLA BLA BLA”

“bin Laden means nothing to the corrupt Bush administration”

“Just another one of the Bush gross incompetencies and failures that occurs right before our eyes...BLA BLA BLA”

“Exactly how low can they go? What scum.”


“While the comment is in, at best, questionble taste, remmber that the prevailing wisdom in the blogosphere was that baause of Bush's incompetence thouads were dead. Because f a lack of ladership on his part, thousands of bodies were floating in the streets of New Orleans.

Thousands dead huh genius?

thinks that those on the right mischaracterize liberals by calling them ANGRY!
Oh really...Hell here is a sample in just a few of their posts. I love when liberals make my point for me.