Since the Vietnam war, the Democrats have been in decline. Oh not a straight decline. More like a long term bear market on Wall Street. Some good days, some bad days. You hardly notice that the long term trend is downward until you find that your portfolio is only a shadow of what it was.
There were a few occurrences which really caused us to wake up and take notice. Most notable was the loss of the House of Representatives during the Clinton administration. More recently, the loss of the Presidency followed by the loss of the Senate has been very discouraging. We Democrats should be thankful for the filibuster.
In Virginia and Florida the Republicans rule. There are many reasons for this happening, such as the appeal for lower taxes, smaller government, a silent race factor, the moral majority, the Christian right, etc. All of these factors were used to weave a seamless fabric for the Republican agenda. The corporate media with corporate money were used to make sure that this fabric was skillfully marketed to each important demographic group in America.
Control of the media, especially talk radio and TV news, were essential for the Republicans to gain power. Americans have heard only about issues selected by the Republicans, and then only Republican solutions for these issues. Notice when there is a political discussion program on TV, the participants are usually very strong right wing personalities countered by often weak center right people posing as liberals. Together they indulge in Liberal Democrat bashing. Next time one of these programs is on pay particular attention to who the representatives of both sides are.
Notice also that when expert opinion is needed there are usually a number of "experts" from at least one of the Republican "think tanks" present. Such conservative groups as the Cato Institute, The Heritage Foundation, The American Enterprise Institute, The Federalist Society and many more.
How do we Democrats get our points across in a country dominated by large corporations and corporate wealth? Somehow we must get our solutions to America's most important issues out to the public in a way that can be easily understood. It is up to us to get the solutions right, get the solutions concise and have every Democratic candidate, for what ever office, to state the same things over and over until it is very clear to every Democrat where the party stands. This is essentially what our competition does that has been so successful.
The chosen issues must be ones that are important to all Democrats. Forget the Republicans and Independents, we have to get it right for Democrats. We can no longer win as Republican-lites as the DLC has promoted. We have to choose candidates who clearly articulate Democratic values and discard candidates who do not. We can no longer be short-sighted using failed methods of selecting our candidates based upon the media talking heads' notion of who is electable. The corporate media is no friend of the Democratic party. A weak Republican-lite candidate can only damage the party in the long run, especially if he wins.
Now let's get out there and decide what issues are important to Democrats and where the party stands on these issues. Then we can support the candidates who clearly support our Democratic values.
That's how we can win in 2004!!!
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