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January 23, 2006


EDM has its own take on recent polling here.

Better in the House than Senate, sez they.

On top of the debacle that is Medicare Part D, this would seem to be a very bad time to roll out Health Savings Accounts (aka Health Segregation Accounts), see Ezra Klein at TAPPED. Like the ill-fated privatization of Social Security, this is another attempt to shift responsibility and costs to individuals. Meanwhile, Iraq goes from bad to worse to Iran.

The Dems just have to find a way to sound credible on national security and push the themes that competence matters and that corruption leads to such things as high gasoline and health care costs.

I don't see Tim Kaine as the person to deliver that message, however. As many have suggested, I think he was a bad choice. But accepting may even hurt his own ability to govern as a moderate.

I think the Cheney comment is a matter of lowering expectations. if they predict all doom and gloom, then they can talk about how awesome they must be doing to have done as well as they can. Of course, at the same time, their propagandists are talking about the Democrats inevitable defeat.. but that's just standard stuff.

Our own predictions say that the only way the Dems will sweep to majorities in 2006 is if a massive disaster or failure occurs that is clearly linked to the GOP in the runup to the elections.

Perhaps they know something we dont.

I think they will attempt to nullify Iraq by pulling out before the elections and declaring that it is now the Iraqi's time to shine and just washing their hands of the matter.

personally, I would predict modest gains in both houses of Congress. One can do that without sweeping every contested seat. The main point is that the wind will be at the dems' back and in the republican's face, and that is being recognized by many commenters, with support in the polls.

If one adds the X factors, like Abramoff, Plame, iraq, iran, etc, the possibilities grow.

The Hotline link Mimikatz gave us suggests that competence will be a Dem theme. They're right.

if only we had competent election strategists.

rove and melman play rope-a-dope each election year with democrats.

they pick some topic and get people to yelling and screaming at each other about it until the elelction is over.

this is not a hard strategy to defeat,

if the democrats and their supporters on the web are disciplined.

in this context "disciplined" means not spending lots of time and words saying how wrong or how unfair is whatever topic rove picks as the "grand topic" of the election year.

in 2002 the "grand topic" was should we go to war with iraq. there were many other questions that could and should have been discussed about security, fiscal responsiblity, energy/ennvironmental policy, health care, but none of them attained any prominence as the bush white hosue, then the teevee blowhards, and then the entire print media and the politically atuned population went off on a seven-month brawl about iraq. when the brawl was over, the republicans had taken over congress.

in 2004 it was gay marriage.

in web-log world terms, rove and melhman are like those "trolls" who visit a web site purely to cause a ruckus and distract readers from engaging in a discussion of the post at hand.

note that there are two parts to this tactic:

1. introducing an emotion laden subject, say, gay marriage, into the public discourse,

2. depending on individuals like us to let not only our opinions about the grand topic but also our antipathy for individual officials like rove or bush (or some other of our bogeymen) get the best of us and lead us into pointless tirades.

the solution to this "grand topic" dilema for democrats?

-- focus (on bush's error and failures)

-- facts (supporting our criticisms) and

-- repetition (of the above two)

to be sure, rebutt the inaccuracies involved in the white house's version of the grand topic but

never, ever

stop there.

it is essential that we generate, articulate, and repeat endlessly our arguments about bush and his administration's leasdership defects and policy follies.

medicare prescription benefits is surely one such item.

but so too is

turning iraq into a seething caldron of anti-americanism which presents a profound danger to us for years into the future

failing to respond early enough to the iran nuclear situation

failing to develop capacity within this country to respond to terrorism or natural disasters,

repeatedly and deliberately misleading the public on matters such as iraq, tax cuts, cost of prescription coverage, etc

failing to deal with the enormous federal deficit bush's tax cuts generated

failure to develop an oil conservation program,

failure to care for soldiers with proper equipment, insurance, medical care, and long term care for wounded,

soiling the office of the president of the united states with a ruthless and immoral principal adviser like karl rove.

there are dozens of such issues that could be added to this list.

the lot of them require putting together into a coherent criticism of bush's presidency

and they require to be repeated over and over from now until november, 2006.

let's develop our set of theses supporting the argument that bush's five year presidency has been a costly failed opportunity for the united states and

nail them to the white house door.


I don't know what is going to happen but I am hopeful. OrionATL puts forth some very good facts.

The key to 2006 is to convince Americans that no one person should be in control of everything -- legislative, Executive, Judicial. And it will be done at the LOCAL level at most at the STATE level, because Bush is essentially target indirectly and background noise. But that ABC poll that puts his approval down at 36% this week is hopeful.

But how well we will do is being determined now -- candidates are committing to run, early money is being put on the line -- campaigns are being organized. Just this week it became clear we probably will not have a primary for Senator in Minnesota, Patty Wetterling dropped out, perhaps to run for Lt. Governor, so Amy Klobuchar has a clear shot. Money and polls look good.

I am also cautiously hopeful about two Congressional Districts -- the 2nd and 6th. I keep looking for out of state congressional districts to follow that might be turnovers.

If the American people had ANY brains, the Democrats will win easily. But if they had any brains, the Republicans wouldnt have come close to winning in 2000 and 2004.

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call me a hippocrite but im a supporter of any party thats in power...coz lets face it....what can we achieve by not supporting them? its not like the opposition is gonna pay us or do us favours the next time theyr in power

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