(some of this article taken from my original post under the title, “Smart Alek or Wise Guy?” on 11/22/04 at Polipundit.com )
Some years back, I was talking about intelligence with my wife, who was unhappy because I said she was “smart”. You see, she thought I was patronizing her, saying things I didn’t mean to make her feel better. I finally helped her see what I was saying; that there are different classes of intelligence and ability. The gourmet chef uses different skills and knowledge than a courtroom lawyer or a retail executive or a musician or anyone else. A person should not be considered ‘below’ someone else, because they are not accomplished in one particular area. It occurs to me, that the Democratic Party has yet to learn this critical lesson.
John Kerry’s facade in 2004 was the epitome of the Potemkin Village, all image and no substance. For a time, I worried that voters might buy into the lie, and miss the man as he really measures. Now I know, Americans are generally able and willing to spot out the fakes and reject them, especially when they have the genuine article for comparison. While President Bush had his own issues of false persona to address, they were not nearly as egregious as Kerry’s, and Americans recognized that fact.
It struck me as strange, for all of that, that the Democrats would not have recognized how thin Kerry’s image was, or that a critical number of voters would see through it. But seeing the reactions to the election from the likes of Edwards and Daschle, Pelosi and Dowd, Gore and Rather, I also realize that the Democrats’ leadership had blocked out any focus but their own narrow vision, so that corrective advice was pre-emptively rejected.
The Democrats grabbed control of Congress in 2006, in part because they continue to dominate minorities with scare tactics and demagoguery. The Democrats continue to control most of the major cities in the United States, where excessive bureaucracy and taxation are accepted without the rebellion which occurs in most of the nation. This means that the Liberal message (speaking connotatively) will continue for the forseeable future, and Democrats will continue to get elected wherever Socialism and Class Warfare are considered reasonable positions.
The Democrats have rejected any strategy which relies on common sense and a unified America. They rely on factions, hoping to prevail on the activism of select portions of the voters, while the Republicans try to apply broader, national, messages. The 2006 election resulted, in part, from the GOP trying to copy the Democrats’ tactics while ignoring voter worries and questions. The GOP failed to deliver a consistent message, and so lost control of the agenda. But this is, if history continues as it has for the past five decades, an aberration in the tide. The Democrats are rigidly controlled by their leadership, their consensus is more difficult to develop and continue; it’s one of the reasons why Democrats accomplish small victories in a long period of time, while Republicans tend to win large battles, but intermittently – since the GOP allows for dissent and debate within its ranks, Democrats can use this debate to break consensus and kill legislation. Americans have seen this, no matter how it was hidden, and taken note.
Now Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has made a number of regrettable statements. Not only that any decent American would regret such sentiments, but that at some point in the future I believe the Democrats will be quite sorry Harry got hold of a microphone. For now, however, the extremists in the Democratic Party have hijacked the war and are doing their worst to drive the campaign to the nearest hole. It may be plainly said that the Democrats seriously intend to bring about U.S. casualties in Iraq by encouraging terrorist resistance, in the hope that they can use the slaughter for their personal political gain. The voice from the Left has gone full course from supporting the war and the men fighting it, to spiteful hate against everyone trying to win in Iraq or finish the job begun in 2003. There is no honorable debate among Democrats anymore on this point – they have established the defeat of the United States as their primary objective. What Democrats of honor remain, such as Senator Joe Lieberman, are silenced and suppressed, made outcasts and warned not to interfere with party objectives. Scarcely in human history has a major political party hoped such vile desires against its soldiers, and schemed such traitorous plots against the nation of their birth and heritage.
The Democrats will continue to exist as a major political party for decades to come. But by their own hand, they are committing themselves to second-tier status. Americans understand and respect traditional liberal values, but they won’t tear down their moral values to advance liberal ideals. Democrats continue to misunderstand what those moral values are; values which transcend part, which the voters expect, frankly, any serious candidate to embrace, like not undermining authority in wartime, or sticking to the issues in an election and eschewing personal attacks by the candidate or his staff, or recognizing the honor in a candidate, even an opponent. It seems that when a candidate displays these qualities, Democrats regard it as a sign of weakness rather than strength, and this badly mis-judges the American sense of honor.