Wednesday, November 17, 2004


Take Me To Your Leader

In our quest to regain the Democrat's political standing, we've talked about controlling the language, controlling the issues, and today we're going to look at leadership. This is something the party seems to be lacking these days. I'm not too sure we're getting off on the right foot.

Why is it that the progressive party is run by the most unprogressive people? Tom Daschle? Terry McAullife? Mary-Beth Cahill? These people were the epitome of what was wrong with the Democrats. Seceral months back, I believe it was February, I recieved a survey in the mail from (then Presidential candidate) Howard Dean. The survey wanted my comments on how to improve the Democratic party. I responded by saying that we should stop trying to act like Republicans. I think I even called them Republicrats. Too many of our party's leaders are stuck thinking that we can peel off votes from the conservative base by acting like them. That's not going to happen. We shouldn't be in the business of conversion, but in the business of creation. We need to create new Democrats. One of the ways to do that is to define ourselves as something unique. Something that people who don't identify with the Republicans can relate to.

To do this, we need new leadership. Not just a leader for the DNC, but someone for the entire party. And no, it shouldn't be Hilary Clinton. Not only is she associated with the old Democratic party (Don't send me hate mail, I still love her and Bill), but she is so polarizing that her leadership would be compromised by trying to fend off criticism. No, we need someone fresh. Someone inspiring. We need someone like Barrack Obama. Unfortunately, he's busy. So who do we know that is fresh, inspiring, and not currently serving in politics?

The first person that comes to mind is Howard Dean. Is he a little unpredictable? Sure is! That's what we need right now. Someone we can count on to shake things up. He already has legions of followers willing to go along with him. He can debate on the issues (something Terry McAullife couldn't do). And he's not afraid to scream once in a while.

What we can't afford is another four years of the same old thing. This morning on the Today show, the new Senate minority leader, Harry Reid, kept talking about how he looks forward to "working with the President." Isn't this what we've been hearing for years now? Trying to be the party of good relations hasn't worked to our advantage. Does anybody remember Newt Gingrich? I hated the prick, but he fought Bill Clinton tooth & nail. Sure, it caused problems, but look where his party is now. They didn't get here by laying down and "working with the President." They fought hard. We need the same fire from our leadership.

Gingrich of course is gone from public service. He was so polarizing that he couldn't last too long. You know what they say, it's better to burn out than to fade away. Howard Dean could be that person. He could come in and light the fire, burn bright long enough to get us back on our feet and then step away knowing that he served his party well.

Any other ideas? I'd be glad to entertain them.

Tommorow we'll get back to the issues.

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