Political Listening…To Other Democrats

On 6-17-2005, I was already dismayed enough by the increasingly angry disagreements within the Progressive Blogsphere that I wrote an article about effective persuasion, communication and it’s impact on campaigns at my old blog The Political Dogfight. I also recorded a more detailed view in a 10 minute audio that was published at my audio blog The Insurgent Political Campaign . (That blog was devoted to methods of creating campaigns in Red Districts.)

The fierce, deeply divided reality of 2008 has gotten far worse than I could ever have imagined. The divisions within the Net community are so deep I wonder what will happen when a nominee, hopefully Hillary Clinton, is confirmed. Will we remember The Prime Directive: First, Get Elected?

Will policy and personal divisions overwhelm our participation in the coming general campaign? Will everyone realize that we truly are fighting for the ‘soul of the nation’, as Bobby Kennedy said in 1968. Forty years later and we are at another turning point. This time we can look at a major portion of the past 40 years and see the price of a divided party and lost election. Hubert Humphrey lost by one vote per precinct.

Many take winning this general election for granted because of Sparky the Chimp’s record and John McCain’s support of the war. I do not. If we cannot talk to each other how can we unite and bring along a majority of American voters?

I ended that article with this: The Dark Art of Sloganeering [see article] may be a necessary part of campaign communication but anger, vitriol and furious responses have no place within the Party or the primaries.

Wishful thinking on my part it appears. These divisions must be healed. But will they be healed? Will we unite as a Party, a force for good? Time will tell.

God help America, Americans and the world if we lose in 2008.

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6 Responses to Political Listening…To Other Democrats

  1. Frenchdoc says:

    What do you suggest, Stuart, to effect such a healing and unifiying?

  2. Gilbert Martinez says:

    My view is that the Democratic Party as we know it is headed for extinction. The fact that Saturday’s RBC meeting is even controversial and Party leaders are considering the use of “rules” to disenfranchise .2.3 million voters suggests that the focus of a large swath of the Democratic Party is not interested in fundamental principles of democracy.

  3. Everyone is too busy opinionating to listen. That’s part of the problem IMHO.

  4. FrenchDoc: First, the candidates have to ask their supporters to tone it down. The language they use has to be harsh and demanding. Although most of us have experienced it from the Obama camp, I’m sure there are more than enough ugly comments coming from Hillary Clinton supporters as well.

    Second, the candidates have to make it clear that they are running an election not for the ‘heart’ of the progressive left blogsphere but for the heart of America . They must let Dkos and the rest of the blogsphere know that they, and by extension DemDaily, do not control the election or it’s outcome. The average American voter will make that determination.

    The average American voter is who they must address most directly. Campaign communications, in a general election, has no other purpose except for fund raising.

    Third, they must demand, yes demand, that their supporters unite. They must make it clear that ‘aftermath warfare’ goes against everything they stand for and will not be tolerated. They must make it clear that it is their judgment that if a supporter refuses to vote or votes for the Republican ticket then, in the opinion of that candidate, those people were never ‘supporters’ and the candidate repudiates them.

    Tough language in the immediate aftermath of the nomination, from the nominee and the loser, is an absolute necessity.

    To Pamela:

    I have believed for sometime, and it certainly isn’t an original view, that most of the political left blogsphere is shouting among themselves.

    Somehow, since we don’t get the TV airtime, except for Markos, our messages don’t get out to the people that don’t spend time on their computers discussing, shouting, yelling and arguing about politics.

    So how do we begin talking to the people we need to persuade? Do we begin posting on the Republican and conservative blogs? Do we have internet radio shows that invite opposition guests?

    I don’t know. There is a way, I just can’t see the clear path right now. As an old friend who used to work in the WH used to say all the time, “I’m not quite clear on that.”

  5. Darrell Prows says:

    “God help America, Americans and the world if we lose in 2008.”
    In a nutshell.

    It helps that McCain seems to be doing everything possible to lose, and that the bulk of real voters won’t start paying any attention until Oct.

  6. October, traditionally, seems to be when they really do start to listen. Yet I’ve seen more interest and discussion about this campaign in places where it isn’t routine than any other.

    In bars, restaurants, fast food places people are willing to talk politics and talk about it in a reasonably informed manner.

    Perhaps I am only drawing to myself those who are also interested. I believe, however, that the general pubic is more involved than they’ve been in the past.

    We’ll see. In the meantime the rest of us have to either calm down or reverse the depression we feel. Neither state is productive.