What America needs now, more than anything (jobs even!) is a smug, smarmy, sleazeball sellout like former Sen. Evan Bayh writing a guest op-ed in the elitist liberal rag, The New York Times to lecture his fellow Democrats about why they too must become a conservative party of far right wingnuts if they ever hope to be awesome winners, like him, ever again.
Because it is always delightful to be patronized and condescended by someone who, after collecting $10 million in campaign cash for an election in which he would likely cruise to victory, decided eh, on second thought, Congress has gotten a little too meany for my tastes, so I think I'll just retire instead. And while I'm at it, of course, keep the 10 mil in cold hard campaign cash 'cause why would I want some dumb fellow Democrat to win my seat when I could leave it to former lobbyist Republican Dan Coats instead?
You see, Evan Bayh is from the old school, a kinder, gentler time when things weren't so bitterly partisan and fat, anonymous slobs in robes and slippers didn't rudely criticize the dignity of United States Senators on their weblogs.
And, as you can imagine, Gentleman Bayh doesn't much care for this new breed of congressional rancor. So instead of say, maybe staying in the Senate to actually try to change things from the inside — oh I don't know by tweaking archaic filibuster rules, reforming campaign finance, enacting laws prohibiting no-good bloggers from saying terrible meany things about elected officials — Bayh decided he could be waaaaay more effective quitting and complaining all the time.
So please, Evan, enlighten the rest of us brainless dolts about what went wrong for Democrats in the elections.
Many of our problems were foreseeable. A public unhappy about the economy will take it out on the party in power, even if the problems began under previous management. What’s more, when one party controls everything — the House, the Senate, the White House — disgruntled voters have only one target for their ire. And the president’s party almost always loses seats in midterm elections.Ok, good to know at least one part can be blamed on history instead of the no-good yellow belly Democrats for once.
And we were too deferential to our most zealous supporters. During election season, Congress sought to placate those on the extreme left and motivate the base - but that meant that our final efforts before the election focused on trying to allow gays in the military, change our immigration system and repeal the George W. Bush-era tax cuts. These are legitimate issues but unlikely to resonate with moderate swing voters in a season of economic discontent.OMG totes! Except for that one, not-at-all significant, tiny little detail that the Dems didn't work that hard on any of those (hence why none actually passed), despite all three being broadly supported by independent voters.
I mean, why should Democrats care about silly, unimportant things like equality, justice, sensible economic policies, or pushing through widely popular initiatives broad majorities of Americans support, such as repealing Don't Ask, Don't Tell (75 percent), passing the Immigration/DREAM Act (70 percent), and letting the Bush tax cuts for the richest Americans expire (59 percent) when they could just spend all their time focusing solely on business and Wall Street?
Hmmm, in retrospect, I suppose it would have been prudent to address the economic discontent during the campaign season in a way that appeals to moderate swing voters and gets lots of attention, perhaps by introducing the "Best Bill In The World To Instantly Fix The Economy & Make Everything All Better." Then, surely the "extreme left" and magnificent moderates Bayh's always orgasming about would fully support its signing.
First, we have more than a communications problem — the public heard us but disagreed with our approach. Democrats need not reassess our goals for America, but we need to seriously rethink how to reach them.Give em the ol' Eric Massa reach around?
Second, don’t blame the voters. They aren’t stupid or addled by fear. They are skeptical about government efficacy, worried about the deficit and angry that Democrats placed other priorities above their main concern: economic growth.Oh so that's what all those semi-literate, misspelled "NObamar is Hitler" signs are all about! Silly me, why didn't I realize that? Makes such perfect sense!
So, in the near term, every policy must be viewed through a single prism: does it help the economy grow?Followed immediately by the second most important question, does this help the rich get richer??
A good place to start would be tax reform. Get rates down to make American businesses globally competitive. Reward savings and investment. Simplify the code to reduce compliance costs and broaden the base. In 1986, this approach attracted bipartisan support and fostered growth.Hear that Democrats? You wanna be winners? Then start acting a little less like liberal losers and a little more like strapping Grand Old Patriots who are always right, pure, and good, and can do no wrong.
The stereotype of Democrats as wild-eyed spenders and taxers has been resurrected. To regain our political footing, we must prove to moderates that Democrats can make tough choices. Democrats should ban earmarks until the budget is balanced. The amount saved would be modest - but with ordinary Americans sacrificing so much, the symbolic power of politicians cutting their own perks is huge.Aww, hell yeah! The only privileged class that should be immune to the times are the few, the proud, the millionaires like Evan Bayh and the rest of his Grand Old Profiteers in the highest income bracket.
Democrats should support a freeze on federal hiring and pay increases. Government isn't a privileged class and cannot be immune to the times.
Because everyone ('cept the dumb, easily duped public?) knows the vast majority of Americans and swing voters in general will never hear about, much less feel, either of these things. Nor will symbolic tactical moves like "cutting the deficit" save the Democrats, put food on the table, or help Junior get a job.
But, umm, nice try??
Then again, they don't call 'em the Grand Old Pretenders for nothing.
So thank you Evan Bayh for sharing your sage wisdom on how to advance legislative solutions by cowardly quitting your actual position of power when things got tough, and also teaching Democrats all sorts of delightful tricks like how to become the strong, successful party everyone respects by championing policies that benefit the rich and appease conservatives while moving the country towards some sort of mythical magical happy land "center."
In other words, how to become the new, old Republican Party!