The Random Ruminations and Observations of a Curmudgeon

17 January 2006

The Cake

Discussion abounds across the blogosphere about the impotence of the Democrats.  The problem with Democrats is precisely that they are democratic.  The party has tolerated, maybe even encouraged, diversity of views since I can remember.  Go to the years of the Dixiecrats; the party consistently juggled differences of opinion to maintain itself.  The party even now has differences of opinion on abortion.  If Harry Reid were evaluated only on his abortion stance, he would not be Senate Minority Leader.  

Today, in the wake of the Alito hearings, we bemoan the fact that Republicans are not voting their conscience.  Not acting like Democrats.  Yet we excoriate Joe Lieberman for straying from the party line.  We cannot have it both ways.  

The Republicans have been successful in getting their message to the confused public.    They have found a means through character assassination and simplification to provide talking points that the party can rally around.  Democrats occasionally find a useful point.  The current one on fear (mentioned by Gore and previously alluded to by many in terms of bladder evacuation) is one that needs to be packaged and pounded.  

The Democratic Party needs to drive home the consensus issues.  Choose them carefully and choose the right spokesperson.

John Murtha and leaving Iraq has been a consistent message from the right spokesman and it has hurt the Republicans.  Howard Dean and his concise statement that no Democrat took money from Abramoff has them reeling as well.  Al Gore should be encouraged to take his message of the bravery of the Founding Fathers far and wide.  The truth, packaged properly, can work.  

It does not mean, however, that Democrats need to start acting like Republicans.  Heaven forbid.