Thursday, November 11, 2004

A Few Days Wiser: What Went Wrong

Editorial Note: If you think the sweet, sweet irony of this piece's length has not dawned on me, worry not! I realize perfectly that I'm in no place to say that Democrats aren't pithy...Oh wait, I am. This is my own little patch of dictatorship. Cheers!

I have been trying for days to write about what went wrong for the Democrats in the presidential election. But it is a silly task. A million talking heads have spewed forth their great rumination and it has been little more than cud. Indeed, I'll offer up my bit of nonsense to the chaotic slough, but it ought to be brief. This has been my colossal mistake--I have not been succinct and clear in every last attempt to communicate my message.

Much the same can be said for the Democrats. They could not clearly and simply communicate their message, their platform, their beliefs, and their identity to rural voters. This is a symptom not of policy that is in discord with the "values" (that word has been trumpeted about a lot) of rural voters, but rather of an ineffective dialogue. The Democrats have failed to connect with rural voters, whose importance in this election and the electoral process in general is overwhelming.

Instead of creating a creed that a platform fulfills, instead of being a party with a purpose, the Democratic party has stitched together diffuse goals that do not alone capture the hearts and minds of voters. Many rural voters are unable to point out what the Democratic Party really represents because the Party does not lucidly present its fundamental principles.

Indeed, what voters do see is what the Republican Party has been able to portray. The Democrats' inefficacy did not simply prevent it from informing the public, but it also facilitated the Republicans' brilliant efforts to distort the Democratic Party line.

Conservatism and the Republican Party have become synonymous with morality, ethics, and godliness. The good man is a good Republican. A flailing Democratic Party has allowed Republicans to frame the debate: The left is anti-God, anti-morals, anti-truth...No matter that the Democrats champion human rights, civil rights, the rights of the poor, the weak, and the oppressed...No matter that this administration has catered to the wealthy, bred injustice, and lied to the country. Despite the facts, Democrats are evil and Republicans are good.

Democrats must adopt the Republicans' techniques--to a point (the same level of distortion is not necessary). Every time a Republican politician violates the unsubstantiated claim of unquestioned goodness, someone has to point it out. The administration lied--It is not an administration of truth. The administration turned away from the sick, the weak, the hungry--It is not an administration of Christ-like compassion. The administration frittered away precious youngsters in a baseless war--It is not an administration of life. It must be clear that no gleaming angels administer edicts from their mighty Washington thrones.

At the same time, the Democrats must inspire the nation, from every church to every home, from every street to every park. They must vociferously stump on the idea that taking care of the underprivileged is godly. Providing health care is godly. Offering education is godly. Looking out for the elderly is godly. Demanding and ensuring fair treatment for all is godly. These do not contradict the teachings of Christianity or any other religion: They celebrate them! Emulating no other than Christ, the Democratic Party places lepers before kings, admonishing the greedy and uplifting the suffering.

While Republicans sieze votes by hanging a cross around the government's neck, the Democrats' platform is imbued with Christianity, Islam, Judaism, Hinduism, Buddhism, Taoism and every other "ism" that celebrates holiness in the practical sense.

It is by helping the most those with the least that government is at its best. This essential belief in building a better society upholds the fiscal and social policy of the Democratic Party. The party needs to make this known. It needs to inspire, singing this sweet song of noble acts in a resounding pitch. If the party sounds it, the clarion shall be heard. The deep valleys and the high mountains alike shall partake in a jubilee of liberty that cherishes a simple message of truth, of justice, of a bright light in the dark night that illuminates even the humblest traveler's path...And for once, the people shall know, because they shall be made to know, that holding this torch are liberals...For to liberate ourselves from the chains of a wayward past brings us to God, not away from Him.

Next Scheduled: Don't Call Everyone a War-Mongering Racist


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