Maintaining Optimism in the Face of Reality. Occasional observations on the state of the world, society, business and politics. Usually anchored by facts, always augmented by opinion.

A Message to Kerry voters and Democrats  | e-mail post

A number of left-leaning individuals read the Hopeful Cynic. Some are my friends, and some come by way of some bloggers that consider me to be a "sane" Republican. Just a quick message to you: thank you all for generating the passion and excitement about this election; although your guy didn't win, American democracy did. We now have a President with a subtantial popular vote margin generated by the largest number of voters to ever go to the polls.

To all Kerry Voters: Honestly, it will not be as bad as you might think. George Bush really is far more intelligent than he is given credit and is far more moderate than he is portrayed. I mean, we're talking about a Republican President who created federal-level standards for education and increased federal funding for education. This is not something a member of the hard right would do.

Some other thoughts you may want to read, to help appreciate that Bush may be more moderate than he is portrayed: "Last Chance to Get Some Facts Out," " More Facts: There Is No 'Ban' On Stem Cell Research," and "Just Accept That The FMA Doesn't Ban Civil Unions and George Bush Is Not Anti-Gay."

Also, keep in mind that Bush is now a lame duck. I think you will find this to make him a better President, from your standpoint.

To Democratic Policymakers: it is incumbent on you all to develop a coherent positive agenda. This may mean jetisoning (or at least no pandering to) portions of your patchwork quilt of consituencies. (I will write more on this, but "Democrats on the Defensive, Per Usual" sets the tone for my advice.)

To Democractic Political Strategists: Again you hung your hope on unrealistically high voter turnout among the youth; again you were disappointed. At the end of the day, even when they register in record numbers, they don't turn out to vote the way grown-ups do. Also, the youth is demonstrably more ignorant of the political and policy landscape. (see "Younger Voters and Political Ignorance")

You cannot develop a truly strong and legitimate government by attempting to build a victory on the votes of the uninformed. Force the policymakers of your party to develop a positive, coherent agenda that you can take to educated and intelligent voters and force a genuine decision about policy, not personality.

To younger Democrats: Ask yourself why you are a Democrat. Ask yourself if you really are informed on the issues. If you really do believe in Democratic ideals, then help your cause be rejecting the demagogues who target the young left. If you think Michael Moore is a hero of the left, you need to think again. His abuse of the facts and personal demonization of Republicans only inflames the passions (and thus strength) of those who even lean to the right. Moreover, he is simply not really that intelligent.

To everyone: If you want some thoughtful commentary about the election, read what I posted a couple of days ago about Tom Wolfe's comments on the election. One of my friends (the one who said I was too smart to vote for Bush) accurately observed about Wolfe: "He has his finger on the pulse of the country like very few writers do."

e-mail post | Link Cosmos | [Permalink]  |  | Wednesday, November 03, 2004
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