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Ideological purity and netroots
Posted by: McQ on Saturday, August 25, 2007

Michael van der Galien points out the building movement within the Netroots to punish the Blue Bush Dog Democrats (they even have a snappy little logo ... check it out). Matt Stoller, while he hasn't issued an "action alert", certainly has all but declared war on them, well sorta, kinda.

What is interesting is a supposed veteran like Stoller thinks he can limit the damage to 'criticism' believing it may change their behavior and that such 'criticism' will remain mild enough not to damage their chances for reelection (if they fully embrace the Netroots ideology of course).
The first step in stopping this behavior is to identify the people engaging in it and offer up criticism. There are a few reasons for this. One, many of these members feel no pressure to vote correctly or uphold progressive values. Criticism is the signal they are relying on to let them know when they err. Two, some of these members may need to face a primary challenge, and it's useful for potential primary challengers to know that there is criticism of these members. Three, other members considering joining the Bush Dog caucus may be dissuaded if they know there will be criticism. Four, candidates running for office will finally have a signal on how they should talk about being good Democrats that are willing to take tough votes.

So here's my ask. Would you profile one of these Bush Dogs? What we need is a brief profile of the member, their voting record, their personality, and the district and its politics. Is there a primary challenge? Is the member well-suited for his or her district? Did the member do something to mitigate this criticism? Remember, this is not an attack, it's a profile so we can get to know these people and eventually persuade them to do the right thing. It doesn't have to be comprehensive or long, just enough to get a sense of who this person is and how they do their politics.
Anyone - given the nature of the Netroots, any chance for the law of unintended consequences to kick in here? Heh ...

Of course this comes on the heels of Stoller's last brilliant suggestion concerning the BDDs:
I've been kicking around the idea with Chris that we should raise the costs of bad decision-making on things like FISA, or when they fold to Republicans on the supplemental or (insert fight here).

It's not much to put up some google ads criticizing these members for their position on FISA. The way Google adwords works is that the ad will only show up for the search terms we select. That means that if we select 'Chris Carney', then people searching for Chris Carney (PA-04) will see an ad criticizing Chris Carney for his vote on FISA. And the people who are searching for Chris Carney are people who want to know more about Carney, like reporters, activists, and constituents. We can even geotarget his state, so only people in Pennsylvania see the ad.

It'll probably run around $100-150 per member for a six month period, which is the amount of time until the law must be reauthorized.

Would you put a bit of money and effort to go after these wayward Democrats? We can't replace all of them with progressive Democrats, but we can certainly annoy at least a few of them and raise the costs for voting against the Constitution.
No feed back on the status of that little effort, but I'm sure Republican dollars are finding their way there.

Next time you hear Kos or any of them say that their only desire is to see Democrats elected, don't you believe it (not that I think many of you do anyway). They are looking for a few "good" Democrats, and they had better be absolutely and positively ideologically Netroots pure or, it is Google ads and criticism for you, Congressman.

Van der Galien gives us the bottom line:
And so, slowly but surely, these people are destroying the Democratic Party. The average American does not favor truly progressive policies nor does the average American think highly of the anti-war crowd (led by Kos and Stoller). They might have their fair share of groupies, but so did other totalitarians in the past. These people are totalitarians because they do not accept any dissent. It is not as if policies are up for debate: they have made up their minds about certain issues, everybody else must agree. If they do not, they have to be targeted.
Pretty straight forward and certainly controversial (controversial in that I'm sure the Netroots would disagree vociferously and tell you how freedom loving they really are), but in the face of the Stoller nonsense hard to argue against.
 
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All I know is Daily Kos has (via any poll out there, even Fox News polls) the majority of Americans on their side when it come to ending the Iraq debacle.

You can pick on Daily Kos for harboring some far left elements, sure, but when it comes to Iraq, Daily Kos is pretty much atuned with the American mainstream.

Furthermore, is it now "mainstream" for any blog, whether right or left, to ignore George W. Bush’s existence?

I think the majority of right wing blogs would, as of current, deem ignoring George Bush’s existence the very definition of "mainstream."

Feel free to surf any given right wing blog this very moment to prove my theory wrong.
 
Written By: daganium
URL: http://
All I know is Daily Kos has (via any poll out there, even Fox News polls) the majority of Americans on their side when it come to ending the Iraq debacle.
Apparently you missed the part about FISA and other little goodies. It isn’t just about Iraq and pretending that’s so won’t make it so.
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/blog
They are looking for a few "good" Democrats, and they had better be absolutely and positively ideologically Netroots pure or, it is Google ads and criticism for you, Congressman.
More to the point, it is about democrats who are beholden to the nutroots, specifically Kos.

They’re just another bloc at this point playing power politics.

Ideaology has very little to do with this really. It’s all about gaining and maintaining power, and the lemmings at Kos site (and others like him) really have no idea how badly they’re being played.
 
Written By: shark
URL: http://
Daganium said:
Furthermore, is it now "mainstream" for any blog, whether right or left, to ignore George W. Bush’s existence?
Do you think that labeling democrats as "Bush Dogs" is ignoring Bush?
 
Written By: tom scott
URL: http://
The Democrats are already perceived as being too far to the left for most voters. Indeed, the very reason that he thinks there’s a problem, is because most people, even democrats, are electing pols who are not as far to the left as Mr. Stoller would seem to prefer. There just isn’t the popular support for it. Therefore, he may very well succeed in pushing his party to the left.

But in doing so, he will be pushing his party even further out of the mainstream, and further away from being electable, thereby.

(Snicker) More power to him.
 
Written By: Bithead
URL: http://bitsblog.florack.us
I remember a time long ago in 2005 when we were told that the Democrats were moving too far to the left (in reality, the center), and that their netroots supported opposition to the Bush administration would lead to an electoral nightmare and permanent Republican majority for a generation.

And then Pelosi and Reid became the leaders of congress.
 
Written By: Oliver Willis
URL: http://www.oliverwillis.com
The DINOs being criticized vote far more like Republicans than Democrats. This isn’t about wanting ideological purity. It’s about wanting a minimal level of common decency.

The copied and pasted nonsense about voters being to the right of the Democrats is just corporate media propaganda. Most Americans are against the war, want universal healthcare, and don’t want the government randomly spying on them.
 
Written By: libhomo
URL: http://godlessliberalhomo.blogspot.com/
And then Pelosi and Reid became the leaders of congress
The GOP thanks you for that BTW
 
Written By: shark
URL: http://
Most Americans are against the war, want universal healthcare, and don’t want the government randomly spying on them.
Maybe in your part of the world but not necessarily where the Blue Dogs come from. Many of them are more conservative than the Republicans they defeated in the last election.
It’s about wanting a minimal level of common decency.
No, it is about representing the constituents from the district. That, by definition, is the basic concept of a Republic. And if the constituents think the newly elected representative is not represnting them properly, then they get to vote them out of the job in the next electoral cycle. Again, that is Civics 101! If a "minimum level of common decency" were the standard, a POS like Clinton would never have gotten elected in the first place.
 
Written By: SShiell
URL: http://
I recall seeing polls showing that most of america was AGAINST the nut-roots desire to cut and run from Iraq...
 
Written By: Scott Jacobs
URL: http://
I remember a time long ago in 2005 when we were told that the Democrats were moving too far to the left (in reality, the center), and that their netroots supported opposition to the Bush administration would lead to an electoral nightmare and permanent Republican majority for a generation.

And then Pelosi and Reid became the leaders of congress.
At which point the approval ratings for Congress started their long drop toward the current 13%.

Do you need a diagram to figure this stuff out?
 
Written By: Bithead
URL: http://bitsblog.florack.us
One, many of these members feel no pressure to vote correctly...
Maybe they believe that they are voting correctly already, and the real problem is that they just happen to disagree with Stoller on the issues.
 
Written By: Aldo
URL: http://
The Democratic congress is being punished in the polls because its capitulating to a Republican president. This helps the GOP how?

The GOP thanks you for that BTW
Yes, I’m sure the GOP loves going from running the legislative branch with complete impunity to being in the minority. And when they lose the White House their diabolical plan will truly come to light.
 
Written By: Oliver Willis
URL: http://www.oliverwillis.com
Actually, OW, most of the polls I see don’t like the Congress for spending more time posturing than anything else combined. And most Republicans I know think that a) housecleaning Republicans like Young and Stevens was / will be an excellent thing, and b) the best way to guarantee Republican wins is an actual reminder of how bad Democrats in charge are.
 
Written By: SDN
URL: http://

 
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