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Sunday, June 29, 2003

Convince Five

I am endeavoring on a new campaign. A campaign to get a Democrat in the White House. A campaign to get Bush out of the White House. As a lower middle class, average white guy, there isn't a lot I can do to effect huge national policy. I don't have deep pockets and a limitless checkbook. But I do have friends. And my friends have friends. And their friends have friends. That's all politics is, really, after all. Spreading the word among connected peoples. Former House Speaker Tip O'Neil said that all politics is local. And I have to agree. Locally organized, the body politic can be a dangerous force that any incumbent or challenger has to deal with. The right wing conservative body has been actively organizing at the grassroots, local, precinct level since 1979, while the Democrats have maintained a devotion to old school courting of union support, elderly support and finger pointing. This has to change or the GOP will stay in power for a very, very, very long time. So my challenge to anybody who reads this - or to anybody who I come across - is to convince five non-voters, or five Republican voters to vote against Bush. And get them commit to convince five of their friends to vote against Bush. And little by little, a movement might be born. I tire of the name calling on both sides. As much as I enjoy reading the Democratic Underground's weekly list of conservative SNAFUs, it doesn't help the cause, because they are talking to the choir. Limbaugh, Savage and O' Reilly are also talking to the choir and their name calling only solidifies their base and certainly doesn't convert voters. But former Clinton economic advisor Jeff Faux said it best recently at a speech the Association of Democratic Activists when he realized while listening to Rush one evening that while drunk right wingers call into the Limbaugh, the Democrats have no one calling in to push their case. "Where are our drunks?" he posed, meaning that there is a more entrenched systematic attempt by the GOP and conservative element to make sure the conservative message is always heard and clogs the airwaves. The Democrats have no such effort and will always be the opposition if it doesn't get awakened and organized. I don't want to wait until Antonin Scalia is named Chief Justice of the Supreme Court before we decide to get off the couch and do something. James Carville put a book out a few years back entitled "We're Right, They're Wrong" an answer to Rush and the Republican message. In the book, Carville said the Democrats need to have their own talking points to have ready at barbeques and pta meetings when that blustering conservative in the crowd begins to blather about politics. Get the book. His arguments for education, taxation environmental, welfare and social security policies are as sound now as they were when he wrote them six years ago. Use it is a starting point to convince five conservatives to vote against Bush. Faux takes it even farther. He said that every family has the grouchy right wing conservative uncle or brother in law. He challenges Democrats to convince that person to vote against Bush. He challenges Democrats to pick up the phone and challenge O'Reilly and Savage and Limbaugh. Take the beating they give and then, call back and prepare to fight again. If five callers call those shows every week, Faux said, Democrats can get elected because candidates can point to real support heard by their constituents. We all know at least five conservative-minded voters who have no clue about what Bush is doing to this country. I know we all feel that making a larger federal government presence in everyone's lives isn't the path we support. Find these people and make an effort to convince them to vote against Bush in the next election. It is more positive than name calling and hand wringing as we try to figure out what to do next. To do my part I will do three things: 1. I will convince five voters to vote against Bush. 2. I will get a commitment from those five to find five more voters. 3. I will post some talking points here and links to other positive resources to help make your arguments. And provide resources to help sell this home. Click my contact link above if you agree or disagree and let me hear about it. I have a mission to get someone else in the White House and in the words of President John Wayne, you are with me or against me.

  • Carville's advice on how to make change.
  • Three Suggestions to Reclaim the Democratic Party.
  • Josh Marshall's Talking Points Memo - A blog on Democratic responses to the Bush Message.
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