Sunday, February 5, 2012
Are We Now Fighting Back?
John Cole and DougJ over at Balloon Juice are wondering if perhaps the Komen/Planned Parenthood kerfuffle is perhaps the beginning of a grand counter-offensive against the Right.
Their point - argued most cogently by Cole here (no doubt while under the influence) - is that the Right is wonderfully focused in their contempt and hatred of the Left and see everything as a life or death struggle with evil liberals. Don't believe me? Go wander through the Barnes and Noble aisle where Ann Coulter and Glenn Beck and Rush Limbaugh and Mark Steyn sell their books (sadly it's not the Juvenile Humor section). The titles are blatant and outward contempt for liberalism, science and humanism.
If we take the Theory of the 27% seriously, I do think that the 27% are people motivated by their contempt of the Other. The other 24% that make up the GOP's winning margins are easily gulled by coded language and appeals to moderation and "both sides do it".
Can Liberals learn to fight back? Most Wonderful Wife was listening to NPR where they let some Wingnut babble on about something - the deficit, I think - and then pointed out that what he said was pretty much false. This morning the Governor of Virginia said that the good employment numbers were largely because of what GOP Governors were doing, not Obama. True, this flies in the face of all economic evidence (since GOP Guvs are slashing spending and thus demand), but will Democrats fight the line of bullshit consistently?
Mitt Romney (rapper name: R Money) is a particularly appalling liar. His stump speech is full of blatant inaccuracies. His first general election ad issues this fall was so awful in taking Obama out of context that even network news balked. I think liberals believe that simply pointing out that R Money is lying is good enough.
For instance, the GOP has been ginning up outrage over something that really isn't an issue: voter fraud. There is simply NO evidence that voter fraud is a real problem in this country. Unless you're the GOP Secretary of State of Indiana. He actually did commit voter fraud on a small scale by falsifying his residence in order to hold public office. Mitch Daniels, the reasonable Republican, will not name a permanent replacement because the sentence might be amended, in which case the convicted man will still be allowed to monitor elections in Indiana. Can you imagine the howls from the Right if a Democratic governor did the same?
The outrage machine is tiresome. It's demeaning. But it's a proven winner. In one of the first posts on this blog, I opined that the GOP is great at winning elections but terribly at governing and the reverse is true for Democrats.
If the Democrats can ever get better at fighting back, there might be hope to address issues ranging from the long term debt to global warming to entitlement and tax reform.
So, let's hope...