Gore Vidal defined liberalism as the discussion of all ideas.
I wrote this to a political strategist here in CO.
Did you read “Listen Liberal: Or Whatever Happened To The Party Of The People” by Thomas Frank?
I think it’s required reading.
Once I read the book I knew HRC was in trouble. Being in tech for as long as I have, Frank’s writing made so much sense to me – particularly that the Dems had become technocrats.
I traveled from Eagle to Chicago to see history in 08 when Obama was elected. I was there in Grant Park.
When Trump was elected I was totally onboard with trying to convert the voters Frank writes about, who lost connection to the Dems.
I grew up here in CO, I talk to people all the time. Today, I believe any effort towards changing minds, getting Red voters to vote Blue, is good money thrown at bad. Read this piece to understand why:
I’ve been in tech since 1990. I’ve invented stuff. I think we’re fucked:
But we’re not doomed. The social networks have poisoned millions of Americans minds. There’s no fixing the networks. Because, “the platforms are still governed by the wrong, sensationalist incentives, where clickbait and lower-quality content is rewarded with more attention”. Simplified, Facebook and Twitter make money on eyeballs and advertising. They’re never going to change. Any piecemeal fix they’ll make a big deal out of is putting a bandaid on a hole in the dam.
Instead, we need new inventions. New networks. I have ideas, but that’s not my direction in writing you. Please. If you read nothing else I’ve linked to, read this piece I linked to in my We’re Fucked post:
The minds of the voters Frank writes about have been taken over. It’s way past time political strategists like you embrace this fact. Their opinions aren’t going to changed. Again, I believe time spent changing their minds is time wasted.
I think what the kids are doing, the #neveragain thing, is great. They’re getting into the streets, taking action. But they’re also playing into the hands of the Right.
While the Left has been protesting and bitching, the Right has been doing work – redistricting, making it harder to vote, doing all they can to keep people of color from voting. Their efforts were successful.
When a new protest is announced, the Right celebrates. Because they know the Left is distracted. You wanna make the Right shake in their boots? Announce that Dems have raised $5 Billion bucks to fund a voter drive. Announce that Dems nationwide, are coming together for a voter drive, similar to the strategy in the Civil Rights Movement.
The only way to dismantle the NRA is to vote for politicians who won’t take their money. The first step to stopping Trump’s dangerous agenda is to get voters to vote in the 2018 mid terms.
Protests are great, they’re part of the mix. But it comes down to voting. It’s all about voting.
Finally, see this piece:
Notice the demographic of who didn’t vote in 2014.
Beating Republicans will be hard. Because the Right has been successful making it hard to beat them. I get it, your candidate has to tell their story in the lions den of Trump voters. But I hope your strategy isn’t built around changing their minds. One more time, ad nauseam, I think it’s a losing strategy. A big reason why is in between the lines in the Infocalypse Now piece, and, the rest of what I wrote.
Instead I’d be staying up late, combing voting databases of to find numbers of Dems who didn’t vote. Then I’d focus on getting them registered and taking them to the polls on election day. It worked once, it’ll work again.
With all due respect, otherwise, your candidate loses.
All I have to do to see where the left is at is check my friend’s Twitter feed.
Right now the discussion is mostly the Florida tragedy – gun control, protesting, and marches.
I think it’s great that kids are speaking up. But mainly what I see is wasted time. Instead of talking to Marco Rubio, having CNN town halls, the effort should be 110% focused on getting people to vote. You want safer schools and to break the NRA? Elect politicians who support sensible gun control and won’t take money from the NRA.
In his NYT piece, The Left Is Energized. Now It Needs to Vote, David Leonhardt wrote it well:
“The mechanics of voter turnout aren’t exciting. But the results can be: Fewer gun deaths. Less climate damage. Less inequality. Higher living standards. And a government that better reflects the views of all its citizens”.
I wrote this today, to an organizer of the Climate Ride:
Please stop any efforts on “awareness”. Please. You are wasting precious time!
Instead, all of your efforts, should be centered around one word – “vote”.
It seems like you don’t understand. We, and I count myself and my family, have played right into our adversaries hands. While we were protesting, marching, and organizing rides, they were making it harder to vote, changing voting laws, redistricting.
They won. They kicked our asses. Now they’re laughing, each time they read about another wasted effort such as yours. They’re laughing when they see people spending time on social media. They’re going to keep winning until groups such as yours have the courage to focus their entire mission on one simple idea – vote. Then, to tell people to get off social media and go get people to the polls.
Nothing changes — our planet, our health, our future — until we the people put people in power who stand for the planet and for our health. Nothing. Why can’t you and so many others see this?
All your efforts should be focused on contacting voters, then getting them to the polls on election day. It worked in the Civil Rights era, it’ll work again.
Read this piece from yesterday’s NYT:
and this one:
Voting isn’t sexy, you won’t sell many t-shirts. But it’s the one thing that’s going to make the difference. Your ride, won’t make a difference.
When you have the courage to admit you’re wrong and change course, count me in to help. But not until then. Because I’m too busy trying to get people to vote.
Eat a peach,