Wednesday, December 08, 2004


The Democrats are tripping over themselves in trying to spin the election, spin their issues, decide which direction to run in, backward, forward? Left, right? Or maybe dig a hole in hide in it for four more years.

Here's what Gary Locke, Governor of Washington says, in an editorial in the NYTimes on picking a new leader for the DNC:

"The Democratic Party has long been the champion of working people everywhere. We are the party that fights for economic, educational and social opportunities and fairness for everyone, whether farmers, blue-collar workers, the elderly, women or minorities. We have always embraced rural values - family, community, hard work, love of country, respect and trust."

Well, Duh.... yeah, that's what we say, but how do we get the message across to all those folks we supposedly represent, who aren't hearing it.

George Lakoff would call it framing, like the Repubs do with "Tax Relief" etc. You've heard it all, Dems have heard it all, so why aren't we doing it?

What does the word "Progressive" mean anyway? The DLC thinks they are progressive. And compared to right wing-nut whack jobs hell bent on Armageddon, I suppose that may be true.

But we need to reframe this whole discussion, or the Dems will keep slogging around looking for the mushy middle they can call their own, without ever really taking firm stands on anything.

So help me out here, how should we frame the issue? How would you explain a progressive agenda to the folks described in the paragraph above? You and I truly believe that progressive values ARE American values. But the cold hard reality is Bush got reelected. Even if the election was rigged, he's there and we're here. And a lot of folks like it that way.

So, maybe we need to take a lesson from Carl Rove as far as messaging goes. Give me your thoughts on this by clicking on the green writing below and posting a comment.

Thanks Green Dogs!


Tuesday, December 07, 2004

The Desperation of Religious Fringe People

I'm really not against religion per se; I understand that some people are perfectly capable of holding a belief in a God or Supreme Being in their minds at the same time they believe in scientific facts and critical thinking, although I personally don't subscribe.

I also know that many of those who believe are good and kind and just and spend their lives fighting for equality and justice for all. I respect those people immensely. They believe in Jesus as an example for the way we should live our lives, not as some gatekeeper for the "saved."

Then there are what I call the Religious Fringe People. But according to Bill Moyers, and recent polling, they aren't so fringy anymore. These people, and there are millions of them, believe that the gates of Heaven will open for them once Armageddon comes calling on Earth.

(Read the Moyers account at and get chills)

They spend their time praying for this. They like to see ferment in the Holy Land, they support Israel, because they believe Israel's take over of the whole region will spur the second coming. Never mind that the poor Israelis they champion now will be smote down by plagues of locusts and boils if they don't convert before God calls his chosen few home.

Never mind if most of us poor suckers will be left behind in pestilence and hellfires on earth for all eternity.

Now, some of these folks are authentic right wing-nuts, who see all this as the granddaddy of all power grabs, while others are just plain old Joes and Jills of the Heartland, who have given up on a better life for themselves or their children on earth and look to the heavens for deliverance.

Who can blame them in a way? Everybody needs something to believe in. For some it's the stock index; for others it's the Rapture index, something that indicates how close we are to that moment when the saved will shed their earthly bodies (or is it just their clothes?) and ascend to the right hand of God the Almighty.

This is scary stuff. It's scary that so many believe it; it's scary that best selling novels are being written describing it (capitalism is alive and well among the religious classes, it seems); it's scary that it's fueling Presidential appointments and policies that are destroying the environment and making us enemies around the globe.

(One rapture theory, subscribed to be former Secretary of the Interior, James Watt, says that when the last tree falls, the ascension begins.)

Well, there's no more to say, except: Be afraid, be very afraid.


Today is Pearl Harbor Day, the day that separates World War II from this new adventure in Iraq. Follow the dots.... Read your history.

Post a comment.

Dotty still a Green Dog Democrat