A focus for dems

In response to Adam’s post below, I made a comment that I wanted to expand on a little here.

Adam was wondering what the Left can do to better explain their position to those in the red states. Essentially, he takes an immutable stand and then reasons that the solution is to simply explain that stand better, i.e. using “code” that the red states will understand, perhaps adopting a little religious rhetoric or something like that. Unfortunately, it seems that that is what the dems have already tried to do but not succeeded in pulling off. That is, the Left has already tried to explain to those in the red states how morally inferior and backwards they are–see Roe v. Wade and Goodridge. It is particularly aggravating to those who vote Republican, in my estimation, that courts are condescending to them in this countermajoritarian, i.e. non-democratic, manner to “explain” to them what an acceptable social policy looks like from within the Left’s agenda and worldview.

Over at the democracy project, Wilfred McClay notes something that could be of use to the dems:

The answer has been staring the Left in the face for a long time, and no one articulated it better than the historian Christopher Lasch, a man of the Left whose chief admirers these days are on the Right (and, not coincidentally, whose name is no longer even repeatable in the company of many professional historians). Lasch spent a goodly part of his career lamenting the Left’s mistaken decision to link its economic agenda to a self-indulgent cultural agenda, one heavily oriented toward sexual liberationism and unlimited expressive liberty. Hence the New Left of the 60s, whose most serious members did indeed have a serious economic and political agenda, but whose movement came in the end to look, to many serious and decent Americans, like little more than a Filthy Speech Movement, and a campaign for sex, drugs, and rock-‘n-roll. Hence today’s Democratic party, which has plenty of filthy speech about “bushes” and such, but no convincing ideas about combating global terrorism or reforming entitlement programs. Its ideological rigidity is so oppressive that not even a single prominent voice can be permitted to dissent on issues like abortion and homosexuality. And its hostility to Americans with serious and morally demanding religious commitments has been fully recognized—and fully reciprocated. On the question of religion, it will not do to blame the messenger. What we have here is not a failure to communicate. The message has gotten through, loud and clear. (bold and underline added)

This is perhaps the core of the problem plaguing the dems right now. Activist judges mobilized Evangelicals who have now made a huge difference in the politics of this country. Now, unless something changes, these newly enthused voters will never side with the democrats, if voting for the party candidate means rigidly and feudalistically adopting repugnant issues of social engineering. Why is there no hope in sight of the dems divorcing their serious economic and political reforms from licentious rights-mania? And why the hostility toward religion? The fact that no prominent dem leader can effectively question the correctness of abortion or SSM and still maintain the endorsement of the party expresses the dilemma the dems have gotten themselves into by being beholden to their special interests that call the shots.



  1. Is Harry Reid such a Democrat? 

    <><><><>Posted by<><> <><>< HREF="http://www.blogger.com/r?headlife.blogspot.com" TITLE="ronan at jhu dot edu">Ronan<>


  2. I think Sen. Reid has a lot of potential to bring mainstream values back to the party. However, i think the inevitable opposition to him by NOW and other similar organizations will serve only to propel Sen. Clinton to the forefront of the party as their new ideological leader, and likely 2008 candidate. 

    <><><><>Posted by<><> <><>Rob


  3. Good point. And then, if the Liberals would just loosen their stance on taxes, the environment, education, science, and public broadcasting, they’d probably get even more votes! 

    <><><><>Posted by<><> <><>Lance


  4. In speaking with some of my colleagues out here, I brought up why I want a third party: to siphon off extremists from one party or another so that I could have a more moderate party to identify with. Hence, my Nader vote (I would have voted Cobb if possible). What can I say, I’m more center left than center right.

    Anyhoo, when I explained that it was the extremists in both parties who have turned me off of both parties, they asked, with some incredulity, “You consider the Democrats extremists?”

    One thing I can say for the Republicans amongst which I live, I have never encountered one who didn’t acknowledge that sometimes his party’s partisans can go a bit overboard.

    Of course, out here, most of the races come down to the moderate Republican vs. the conservative Republican. Perhaps that makes the internal make-up of the party more apparent. 

    <><><><>Posted by<><> <><>< HREF="http://www.blogger.com/r?http%3A%2F%2Fwww.blogger.com%2Fprofile%2F5058781">John C.<>


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