December 29, 2004


In a Clueless Party (Michael Gecan, December 29, 2004, Washington Post)

Thirty-two years ago, in the Auditorium Theatre of Roosevelt University in downtown Chicago, I believe I witnessed the destruction -- actually, the self-destruction -- of the Democratic Party. I was attending a rally for George McGovern. The place was packed. And the stage held scores of Chicago pols -- red-faced aldermen and county committeemen in dark suits.

There were the usual speeches from the usual Democratic functionaries, but the warm-up act for the candidate was not some tongue-tied Polish pol from the Northwest Side. Onto the stage strode an actor everyone knew -- Warren Beatty. He was a vision -- handsome, tanned, long-haired and dressed almost entirely in black leather. He dramatically discarded his floor-length leather coat, only to reveal leather pants and shirt. The crowd inhaled, gasped and burst into applause. The faces of the pols onstage went white with shock or red with rage.

Beatty is now a married man, with a family, back in California, but the Democratic Party is still the same star-struck, celebrity-driven, immature mess that it was in 1972.

Less mature than Warren Beatty has to be the harshest thing anyone's ever said about the Party.

Posted by Orrin Judd at December 29, 2004 8:45 AM

This is the money quote:

"They did not engage the people in real conversation. They did not listen to their concerns. They did not recruit real volunteers to work on their own blocks."

Posted by: Chris Durnell at December 29, 2004 10:23 AM

It always pleases me to read that the year of my birth proved to be the undoing of the Democrats. It can't be mere coincidence ;-)

Posted by: Peter at December 29, 2004 11:18 AM

Right year, but for me it was when Jesse Jackson and Bill Singer got the machine delegation thrown out at the convention.

Posted by: jdkelly at December 29, 2004 11:59 AM