July 1, 2008

THE UNPOPULIST:

Memo to Obama: Moving to the Middle is for Losers (Arianna Huffington, 7/01/08, Real Clear Politics)

Running to the middle in an attempt to attract undecided swing voters didn't work for Al Gore in 2000. It didn't work for John Kerry in 2004. And it didn't work when Mark Penn (obsessed with his "microtrends" and missing the megatrend) convinced Hillary Clinton to do it in 2008.

Fixating on -- and pandering to -- this fickle crowd is all about messaging tailored to avoid offending rather than to inspire and galvanize. And isn't galvanizing the electorate to demand fundamental change the raison d'etre of the Obama campaign in the first place?


It may well be the case that a liberal Northern Democrat simply can't move to the middle--after all, none ever has successfully. However, Al Gore lost because he ran away from his own conservative Southern background and his 8 years of Clintonism and Hillary only caught fire when she started running as Mrs. Clinton. The Obama campaign can galvanize every leftwing voter in the country and that leaves them at around 40%. But note that while he talks about change in the abstract there is nothing concrete even he proposes changing.
Zemanta Pixie

Posted by Orrin Judd at July 1, 2008 9:30 AM

40% + the angry gas buyer + the stupid rich + the stupid right staying home + dingbat soccermom + the vast quantities of money flowing into getting and keeping them all organized = a potential win.

Keep whistling

Posted by: Bruno at July 1, 2008 10:34 AM

He proposes changing the party of the president.

Posted by: Brandon at July 1, 2008 10:51 AM

"40% + the angry gas buyer + the stupid rich + the stupid right staying home + dingbat soccermom + the vast quantities of money flowing into getting and keeping them all organized = a potential win."

Not really. 40% includes all those.

Posted by: sam at July 1, 2008 11:01 AM

Arianna's right of course. You can't "run to the middle" and win. You have to run to the right.

Why Obama doesn't follow Clinton's '92 playbook is beyond me. Here's your winning campaign platform:
1. Balance the budget. (It would be a bald-faced lie, but that hasn't stopped him on any other issue.)
2. Middle class tax breaks. (See above)
3. Demonize the Saudis the way Clinton demonized China. (See above)
4. Make some vague comment implying that you're not completely comfortable with abortion. (See above)

Posted by: b at July 1, 2008 11:04 AM

We'll see--the folks I talk to are already "galvanized" over Effendi Obama.

After, there may be a reasonable doubt that he's an enemy agent, but there is a mathematical certainty that he is a gun-grabbing, Commie-loving baby-murderer. And did I tell you, he's Black.

This is very significant. It means not an American who happens to be of African or mixed African descent, such as Colin Powell or Condalezza Rice, but an irredentist folk-enemy who, in his heart of hearts, curses, "God damn America."

Posted by: Lou Gots at July 1, 2008 11:29 AM

There is really no galvinizing necessary. His base knows what he says now are all lies. They know him better than you think. But they want desperately their leader to lead their cult. As the Wisconsin law professor said Obama was not flipflopping, he was just "flexible and pragmatic". His moving to the center is a ploy to attract the votes of the so-called open-minded independents (i.e. self satisfying fools).

Posted by: ic at July 1, 2008 1:39 PM

"....the angry gas buyer + the stupid rich + the stupid right staying home + dingbat soccermom...."


Yes, Bruno, and use of these names in addition to "doped-up Suburban White Mice" is sure to get people toward your line of thinking. Much like the Right thinking that referring to their own GOP politicians as principle-abandoning bums saves "conservatism." Also, much like some Conservatives saying they are "more Conservative than Republican" helps advance the GOP.

Be honest, Bruno: You, along with too many Conservatives, have absolutely no desire to do the responsible thing, which is what winning politically requires.

Posted by: Brad S at July 1, 2008 3:18 PM
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