The Washington Post this morning ran an article, “Bellwethers, Eight Issues That Will Shape The 2006 Elections” or one of a series of articles which is indicative of a coming surf tide of newsprint, virtual and otherwise, which will wash up on the shores of our collective consciousness over the next dozen or so weeks.
Predictions about the midterm election will curl whitely and proudly in the air and regularly and rhythmically slap our calm beaches until we are struck silly with predictions, expert opinions, and statistical analyses of the 06 election.
The pundits will come at us with all the passionate certitude, the almost messianic zeal, and none of the shyness of hordes of bookies and racing touts, or carnival barkers.
It won’t be just from the Post, I can’t be unfair to WaPo, (they do their job as well and often better than most), we will be assailed from all sides, flanked left and right and enveloped vertically and horizontally, surrounded front and rear by print media, broadcast media, both, national and international, by columnists, commentators, gossip mongers prognosticators and legions of attractively coifed and clad microphone wielding talking heads.
The famous, the unknown, the long standing and the novice all will join the 06 Autumn Election Assault from the Media Terranian Sea. They will ‘splain it to us Lucy.
I heard the first shot of the invasion in the lead in to The Post coverage this morning, it sounded like this:
History suggests, and operatives in both parties agree, that Republicans are virtually certain to lose ground.
The party that holds the White House almost always loses House seats in the midterm elections held in the sixth year of a two-term presidency.
Only once in the past century has that pattern not held.
I think that in order to pump election coverage full of the proper quotient of statistical arcana, editors, during these critical election seasons, throw all the political writers /commentators into the same locked and padded room with the sports writers /casters /commentators, toss in a few dozen counter guys from auto parts chain stores, add a couple of insurance actuaries and you get:
Dammit Mel, you know as well as I do… The party that holds… almost always…. in the sixth year….with the overhead cam… on fuel injected models with men on base…. in late innings… Naugahyde bucket seats… during post season play.
And you can take that to the bank Mel!
I was forced to look this up (thank God and Gore for the Internet) The first problem I ran into was, what is the definition of a two term president; are three term prexys included? And what about those not elected to their first term, who were elected by the Grim Reaper like TR or Harry T, or those who didn’t complete a second term due to a severe attack of unpopularity like RMN?
I quickly grew bored with all this research (I always do) and went and washed up (I got some of that arcana stuff on me) and fixed my lawnmower instead.
The eight points in the Post’s Bellwether article are certain to be at the center of the political discussion though, this stuff ain’t Rocket Science, hell, it’s barely Lawnmower Repair.
Republicans in the Northeast
Democrats in the Upper South
The last three threw me a little (that arcana stuff again) but for the most part this stuff is obvious.
To me there is only one issue at the center of the 06 election and the same issue will be at the center of the 08 election.
We need it, we deserve it, the country, the continent, no, all the continents, the world, the Earth, Middle Earth, Bilbo Baggins, the guys in the Star Wars bar scene, every one I know is clamoring for it, in this dimension and others.
Frankly, I really don’t care how we get it, pitchforks and guillotines worked OK for the French, we could appeal to the UN or NATO. We could file a class action in the World Court. We could pray, oops they tell me that’s how they got the current regime, better not pray.
Maybe we’ll find a Democrat.
Maybe somewhere in one of our locally parallel dimensions Tom Paine or Tom Jefferson will hear our plaintive public call or Harry Truman will rise from his Heavenly Haberdashery to show us again what a true Democrat is and inspire and lead the charge to: Regime change
I wouldn’t mind an old fashioned regime change like our Liberal Founding Fathers pulled on the previous King George at all, and I’ve read in many places that Jefferson recommended a good fresh revolution when the people find themselves somehow returned to tyrannical and oppressive rule.
Considering everything though, I would much rather see the coming of the Night of the Living Democrats, you might remember them, they used to say things like this: Publicly too:
“You know that being an American is more than a matter of where you or your parents came from. It is a belief that all men are created free and equal and that everyone deserves an even break. It is a respect for the dignity of men and women without reguard to race, creed, or color. That is our creed.”
Or this on secrecy:
“Secrecy and a free, democratic government don’t mix.”
Or in describing the parties’ basic differences:
The Republicans believe that the power of government should be used first of all to help the rich and the privileged in the country. With them, property, wealth, comes first. The Democrats believe that the power of government should be used to give the common man more protection and a chance to make a living. With us the people come first.
Or on international conflicts:
When Kansas and Colorado have a quarrel over the water in the Arkansas River, they don’t call out the National Guard in each state and declare war over it. They bring a suit in the Supreme Court of the United States and abide by the decision. There isn’t a reason in the world why we can’t do that internationally.
Or on why we lose elections:
When voters are given a choice between voting for a Republican, or a Democrat who acts like a Republican, they’ll vote for the Republican every time.
That last quote is a real doozey, I wish all the current crop of “Democrats” would read and understand it, they might quit trying to be the Neo Liberal Tory and Lobbyist Open Bar and we might get some: Regime Change.
Actually, all these quotations didn’t come from Democrats, they came from one Democrat, Harry S Truman and he stopped by this afternoon from his parallel dimension for a visit and a strategy session. Yes, my mind is beginning to slip a bit.
I’ll be writing his advice down. I’ll put in in a bottle and toss it on the net.
Tell those Tory fella’s, it might just wash up on a beach near them.