Going, Going, Gone?
If I had one mill for every time anyone to the left of the GOP wrote on blogs over the past three years, “We/Democrats/Democratic Party/Candidate x should do “y,” I would be wealthy. Somehow all this well-intentioned “shoulds” have translated into not gains for the left but even more losses. And yet, the we persist in believing that the next “should” will be the key to taking down a multi-headed beast and cut off beast’s thousand tentacles.
Over and over again the “left” confronts new tricks of the beast with a “wtf?” “How can they get away with that?” “ This time they have overreached for sure!” Then the recommended “shoulds” for the “left” kicks in, but even if tried, don’t work.
We’re like a bunch of has-beens, could of beens, wannabes pick-up team going up against the best funded, best coached team with the deepest bench. Worse is that the opponent is setting all the rules of the game and our team doesn’t seem to understand them. Finally, our team has only one combined goal, beat the opponent, but each member is so busy trying to be the star player that they trip up, fall on and tackle the members of our team more often than they do the opponent. The opponent’s quarterback can throw a ball for shit but he looks good when pumping the ball and constantly diverts our team’s total attention on him while the rest of their team carries on running and passing rings around us. And after each good play or additional score by the opponent or each busted play or fumble by our team, we pick ourselves up and blame somebody for our misfortune and convince ourselves that we will do better on the next play.
I don’t think so.
The GOP collection of special interests is unique because their interests don’t overlap. The agenda of one doesn’t impinge on or bother the agenda of others. At least not in the near term. The standard GOP integrated worldview is only directly beneficial to a minority of their members (and is even detrimental to many), but the others either don’t understand that or they prize their special interests above their own personal well-being. Not so for Democrats.
Never in the past thirty-six years have Democrats put their differences aside more than they did in 2004 and rally around a man that was couldn’t have been fuzzier. Quick, what were the three primary themes of John Kerry’s campaign? Name a signature issue (one that he has been identified with and has championed and worked consistently on through must of his tenure in the Senate) for John Kerry that he took into the campaign. Once again we had generic Democratic running for POTUS because we refuse to come clean and clearly take a stand on major issues. With each election cycle, more and more that Democrats thought we held dear become negotiable. We are now eating our seed potatoes.
The GOP now knows that the lack of total and across the board solidarity in the opponent means that they can drive an effective wedge in us on every issue and every policy. For sport they keep us busy and distracted by hurling continuous and meaningless lobs at us from every direction with confidence that we will bobble some number of these and look foolish or petty.
Three years ago, we were down but not out. The internet and blogs held great power to compensate for the rightwing biases and journalistic weaknesses of the MSM. It awakened a lot of people, but far from changing the course of history, it only made us more aware of how bad things have gotten and how powerless we have become. Most of all it highlights how extraordinarily divided the left has become. We agree on nothing – nothing. Agreeing on nothing, there is no consensus and therefore, no single “shoulds” exist to pull us together.
It’s been a long time coming. It’s going, but is it gone?
Sold to the highest bidder?