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Friday night rant

For a variety of reasons, I haven’t blogged for quite a while, and I realize that the world is a poorer place as a result. So, back in the game for a few minutes at least.

This week the Democrats lost two special elections, and the losses perfectly illustrate the problems we’re going to have in the future. To paraphrase Cassius: the fault, dear Democrats, is not in our stars, but in ourselves.

I gave money early and often to Jon Ossoff. If you did also, you know what a friend he became, as I got an email from him at least 4 times a day for weeks. When it became apparent that he might win, the DCCC moved in to “help”, and the result was sadly predictable. It’s instructive that the Democrat in the South Carolina race, who everyone pretty much ignored, actually did better than Ossoff.

I can’t add much to what’s written here about the Ossoff race and the Democratic establishment in general. Watch the commercial embedded at that link, and ask yourself why the Democrats thought serving up that mush would win them any votes. Donald Trump is Pres**ent. He’s the issue, not deficits or excessive spending, and when was the last time you heard a Republican blame “both parties” for anything? And isn’t it time that we, as Democrats, stop talking about deficits in the same uneducated fashion as the Republicans? We could have used a bigger deficit over the course of the last few years. Every rational economist agrees. If we can’t come up with a good way of snappily explaining the use of deficits, than we should at least shut our mouths about them. But the larger point is that Democrats have no narrative. They stand for nothing, not even the things people like that the Democrats have done. They constantly seek the ever more rightward defined “middle”, where no one actually lives.

The Democrats will enter the 2018 election cycle convinced they can win because they are not the party of Donald Trump. They will have nothing to sell to the voters besides that. They will gladly risk alienating all the resisters in order to secure those Wall Street dollars. They will once again be victimized by the consultant class that produced Ossoff’s commercial. We saw that here in Connecticut in the last election. So many of our candidates used that state money to buy the services of political consultants whose first priority was lining their own pockets, by, for instance, paying themselves to print and mail pointless and often counter productive leaflets. The Democrats have not seemed to notice that the Republicans have won by being pretty much in your face about what they stand for. Well, actually they’ve been in our face about what they pretend to stand for, but the point is that they aren’t constantly trying to appeal to a non-existent middle. I would suggest Democrats go back and look at what Democrats stood for (domestically) in 1968. They might be surprised to find that most of them were indistinguishable from Bernie Sanders.

What these elections show is that there is a role for those of us in blue districts. We have to start pressuring our Congresspeople to take back the DCCC, DNC, and the DSCC, and, for that matter, the ossified Democratic leadership in the House. Pelosi’s personal politics are fine, but she always seems to find a way to hand those institutions to the most right wing Democrats she can find. Everyone is talking as if it’s a done deal in 2018; that the Democrats will take the House. If they do, and I doubt that they will, it will be in spite of themselves, and they will proceed to do their best to make sure their stay in power is brief. After all, the Democrats always take great pains to lose in years divisible by 10 (Cast your memory back; it’s true). Redistricting is such exhausting stuff; better to let the Republicans do it. If they don’t take the House, you can bet your bottom dollar there will never be another remotely fair and free election in this country. Don’t pay any attention to the Supreme Court’s decision in that North Carolina case; once they get their hands on a properly packaged voter suppression bill they’ll give it a pass, and every red state in the country will pass something similar to whatever they green light.

End of rant.

On another note altogether, if you’ve had trouble cataloging Trump’s lies, here’s a handy guide. It’s the abbreviated version, since it starts with Inauguration Day. Anyway, it would be handy to have on hand if you need to educate a Trumper.

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