Tuesday, August 08, 2006

How Can Bama Dems Best Help National Party?

Blogger image posting is still bloggered but it matters not beyond aesthetics on many posts. Typepad still calls to me ...

I have been pondering (perhaps soon I'll be where I can tell you why) how my Alabama Democratic Party can best fit in with the national party. While I know organizations like ALEC are prepared to fall back to the state level should conditions turn on the national stage, few could doubt that the Big Mules have long had control of Alabama. On my side, groups such as AEA, ADC, ASEA ... seemingly have a great deal of influence in the party. That is hardly a negative in some concerns yet I've at times wondered if our approach isn't short sighted as far as goals.

If there's not a change in the nation's direction I'll simply offer that we are screwed! We can't continue seeing the middle class shrink as hyper-capitalism runs wild. From just the failures of militarism to the challenges of globalism, not to mention global warming and our fossil fuel dependence, with health care concerns to boot, the GOP has simply bungled everything. Bill Maher's "George of the Bungle" is certainly representative of the Republican failures. Again, I'll argue that "conservatism" as a doctrine has failed once implemented under Reaganism yet certainly the last few years we've seen that total GOP power is simply dangerous to our nation and world.

This Liberal Journal post examines Paul Krugman's recent "Centrism is for Suckers" piece in the New York Times. Since the Gray Lady put up their Select wall before Krugman and other amazing talent, I've missed much NYT column wisdom. LJ shares a good portion, and perhaps even all, of the column that contrasts the actions of various left and right groups. He demonstrates that Republican leaning organizations often fall in line with the GOP's agenda even when perhaps it is contrary to their own direct concerns. His examples on the left are groups like the Sierra Club and NARAL which endorse moderate Republicans like Senator Lincoln Chafee of Rhode Island. The Sierra Club's reply is also provided. I'm conflicted on where I'd fall on this issue, although I'm learning toward Krugman. Perhaps the Sierra Club could split the baby and praise Chafee while blasting his party?

This piece has me pondering how the Alabama Democratic Party could best advance restoring our national party to majority status in the U.S. House and Senate and also support a return to the White House. In my House District, the 3rd represented by Mike Rogers despite the best efforts of our current party Chairman, I'm optimistic at least this seat could return to our side. Now I know the national party hardly did their part in losing it but that's in the past. I certainly don't think Mike Rogers could withstand a campaign that focused on the GOP's disasters given the lack of satisfaction with Bu$hCo and the Rubber Stamp Congress. If our state party doesn't celebrate the national party and also attack the GOP's corruption, incompetence, false values, hypocrisy, ... then are we now doing our part?

Between the gerrymandering and the power of incumbency some House districts here will remain out of play but a message that serves the interest of statewide and national elections should I'd argue remain supportive of the Progressive agenda that only the Democratic Party can carry out. Individually and collectively I think we can reach out to many voters that as of late seem to default to the GOP. We'll do this at times by sacrificing short term goals however. When we run candidates that try to be Republican Lite that is harming our long term interest isn't it?

I guess I'm offering that the years of the Blue Dogs are over. Centrism isn't working and perhaps can't given the current approach by the GOP masters. I want to confront, confound, confuse, contrast, ... the state and national GOP machine. I am still hoping that Governor Dean will take the bait from Ms. Andress-Cavanaugh. Embrace his message and use it. Lucy Baxley and other statewide candidates need the support of voters that have fallen to the other team. The few remaining "values voters" we lose by heading left can be overcome by tapping into our populist streak. I'll suggest that without a shift we'll not only continue to lose influence in this state but at the same time not advance the interests of the good guys on the national stage. We must run these foxes out of the henhouse, and I figure the main henhouse to focus on is up in DC. Peace ... or War!