WE. HAVE. TO. WIN. IN. 2014!!!
Nothing. Else. Matters.
That is the North star we must follow no matter what fake scandals are strewn in our path. Apathy and Complacency taught us a huge lesson in 2010, whose ramifications stall our progress now. Many of us failed to appreciate how recalcitrant entrenched plutocratic power is. So we have to defeat the GOP and their brand of UNAMERICAN callousness toward the 99% of this country’s population. When someone shows you who they are, believe them. Republicans do NOT care about this country’s welfare, only to grab for their monied friends. Period.
As President Obama said on election night 2008 “the road will be long, our climb will be steep, but America, we will get there.” Every one of those predictions has been borne out. Good news is we conquered them in 2012. But we have more fight on our hands. Today’s 37th repeal Obamacare vote should remind us that Republicans never give up on eroding our rights. They keep gnawing and gnawing and gnawing at our rights until they can wear us down and chip away till we have only empty shells left.
We all know the following cases in point: Reproductive Rights of women, Section 5 of Voting Rights Act, Personhood Amendment bills, Separation of Church and state, Workers Rights, Consumer Protection, Environmental protection…and on and on..! Also, what everyone including corporate media thought initially was the 3rd rail of politics – Not touching Social Security & Medicare – is now shrugged at, thanks to Paul Ryan’s thrice-voted on budget . That is what they do, move the Overton Window ever rightward!
The charade we’ve been seeing from Republicans since President Obama’s reelection that reached an absurd climax this past weekend is ALL ABOUT mobilizing their base for 2014. Actually, the ramped up hatefest is a sign of panic. They have aborted their own plan to “reach out” to constituencies they lost, even before they implemented it. The entire Priebus review was a sham intended to massage the centrism fetish of corporate media lackeys and Independents. Republicans know that they CANNOT change.
So with backs against the wall they are returning to the Southern Strategy that failed to win them 2012, this time on steroids. Insane. Yes. But it is the insanity they know best. They will double down on kamikaze tactics because their base is in nihilist mode. Burn down the darn house! The Conservative puppetmasters are desperate to weaponize that nihilism for their greedy benefit, since they don’t have to give their base anything tangible in return, save the adrenaline rush from heightened Obama-hate. Our side’s resolve to govern will be tested even more.
The narratives will get worse. Why? That’s because the Republican base is not interested in the veracity of any of their fake “scandals.” In fact whether the Republican leaders or moneybags themselves believe them is beside the point. The “scandals” are simply trigger points in a larger scheme to prime their base psychologically for peak wingnuttiness at election time. For this phase, the real ploy is to generate noise warfare. The narrative is simply a soundtrack doubling as a cattle call. The Republicans KNOW their base well. And that base is only motivated by one thing and one thing ONLY: Grievance. And by golly the power hungry Conservative puppetmasters are going to stroke every darn erogenous zone of their base to grab power using every trick in their Atwater book taken to the nth degree.
Actually the more the basis for their outrage is proven to be WRONG, the more consolidated their feelings of being besieged. It is a well-choreographed and calibrated strategy to prime grievance to the point where it is automated and actionable even without anything to launch it, just like cyber worms. We saw it in the run up to the hellish summer of “Death Panels” in 2009. What we saw the teabagger caucus led by Ted Cruz, Louie Gohmert, Michele Bachman, plus Mitch McConnell do yesterday outside Congress is intended to launch death panels 2.0.
The Good News, we’ve seen that movie before. The hate may be ultra-rabid, but there’s something stale about it. So what do we do practically and pragmatically to defeat them?
My next series of Posts will be ACTION DIARIES: Here’s how we start:
Rule # 1: Don’t waste energy & bandwidth on the Professional Left (me included). In spite of their dangerous fecklessness, the Professional Left is not our target. The GOP is. The corporate media too deserves our unrestrained scorn. The PL has media bark, The GOP has legislative and electoral bite. Focus on the GOP.
Rule # 2: FOCUS, FOCUS, FOCUS. We have limited time and resources in the fight to kick GOP House out and safeguard Senate in 2014. Go full bore on the few House Wingnuts in swing districts. Attack ALL GOP senate candidates like we did Romney. No mercy.
1. We have to defend 20 Democratic Senate seats like our lives depend on it. They do. Even the most conservative Democrats have a modicum of integrity and sanity to govern in our interest (e.g. Manchin, Landrieu, Kay Hagan).
2. We must win 17 House seats to gain majorities
3. We must take back as many of 30 GOP controlled governorships as possible. 2010 electoral lapse cost us Ohio, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, Iowa, Maine, Florida. 2012 cost us North Carolina.
4. Reverse GOP supermajorities in State legislatures that have eroded women’s rights and voting rights
SCOTUS SCOTUS SCOTUS: This should be the subtext and overtext to everything we do. If this SCOTUS is gonna be giving us CU and venal corporate-siding rulings every single time, then we just have to get Democrats especially in the Senate confirmation process to get us the SCOTUS we want.
ACTION #1: Get signed up in your state (or any state) to work our butts off for these Senate Seats that we are defending to maintain our majorities:
Seats to Retain:
Mark Begich (D-AK)
Mark Pryor (D-AR)
Mark Udall (D-CO)
Chris Coons (D-DE)
Brian Schatz (D-HI)
Richard Durbin (D-IL)
Mary Landrieu (D-LA)
Mo Cowan (D-MA pending Markey/Gomez election)
Al Franken (D-MN)
Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH)
Tom Udall (D-NM)
Kay Hagan (D-NC)
Jeff Merkley (D-OR)
Jack Reed (D-RI)
Mark Warner (D-VA)
6 Democratic Open seats: Iowa, Michigan (Dem Gary Peters contesting), Montana, New Jersey (Dem Cory Booker contesting), South Dakota, West Virginia
GOP seats to fight for: Susan Collins (R-ME) We should fight for this
Rule # 3: Remember to KISS (Keep It Simple Stupid) when talking to voters about electing democrats to support our President to govern
What has Obama done for you? Here’s a start:
Democrats: Passed Obamacare. Saved GM. Killed Bin Laden. Ended Iraq War. Created 6.8M private sector jobs. Restored your 401(k).
— Betsy (@bbkenn92) May 17, 2013
— The White House (@whitehouse) May 16, 2013
Read more here on health reform
Preventative Care (see here)
b) Tell the Independents and moderates this: “In September 2008 did you look at your 401k/403b statement? And the next one in December 2008? Good. Who was in power at that time? Have you looked at your recent statement? Yep. PBO saved your 401k.
c) Republican family member or acquaintance who is worried about “debt” and “gover-nnnnnn-ment spending”. Show them the CBO report released on Tuesday May 14th. For kicks ask them whether putting 2 wars and billionaires’ tax breaks on the nation’s credit card was the moral thing to do.
d) To an Emoprog whiner: “So you are disappointed with this President after 4.5 years in office and you will sit out the 2014 elections like you did in 2010? Great. How did that work out for the liberal agenda from 2011 till now? You know how long the wingnuts have been unhappy? Since FDR. They have never stopped fighting to turn the clock back. Talk about intestinal fortitude!!!
e) And the one who says all Dems are corporatist schmucks “I’m not prepared to vote for the lesser of two evils….yada, yada yada…”, you say “Sure, Not voting for the lesser of two evils gets us the worse of two evils. How’s that for a batting average?
As an addition to the roll of blog tyrants, I welcome more suggestions for future ACTION Diaries. We have to prime our pump.