Sunday :: Aug 7, 2005

Progressives Mount 5-Year, $80 Million Effort To Counterbalance Conservative Machinery

by Steve

It looks like the Left is finally getting wise to the long-range steps necessary to challenge the entrenched right-wing machinery in this country. Simon Rosenberg, who led the creation of the New Democratic Alliance last year, and other donors have decided to pull together a large group of major progressive donors to fund an aggressive five-year $80 million effort to build a progressive infrastructure in this country. Even though this money is a drop in the bucket compared to what is spent annually for right wing think tanks, leadership and media training, and other support activities, the new effort has the advantage of focusing money on building the infrastructure necessary to catch up to the right wing in a hurry, rather than seeing money sent every which way to a variety of causes that add relatively little to the progressive left’s ability to build and sustain a counterbalance to the right wing machinery.

To some, this will sound like a cloaked effort to push centrist, new money, more DLC-type organizations ahead of more traditional progressive organizations in appeals for money. There might be some merit to that, but it remains true that the center-left hasn’t done enough to think beyond the next election cycle at hand and do long range infrastructure building and issues/message development. This is a step in that direction.

Others have noted that George Soros has pulled his money from America Coming Together, which has in essence shut down as a result. Although Soros’ money was welcome and used somewhat effectively last year, the truth is that deep pockets like Soros and a select few others can do more for rebuilding a center-left counterweight to the conservatives by pooling their money and buying a cable news network, than they can by throwing their resources into small-scale operations. Until the major donors on the center-left pool together and retake a media outlet, the rest of these efforts will lack a platform from which to wage the battle.

Steve :: 11:15 AM :: Comments (7) :: TrackBack (0) :: Digg It!