Thursday, November 06, 2014

Did I Predict Shellacking 2.0 in 2010? Yeah, Kinda

Over at his economics blog, Brian Wesbury, who understands the intersection of policy and economics as well as anybody, has an interesting take on the election.  He sees it in socio-historical terms as an inflection point, rather than just another election cycle shift in leadership. 

Loosely translated, Brian is saying this marks the end of our modern experimentation with big government, statism, progressivism, whatever you want to call it.  Consequently, we are embarking on a long term societal trend of reducing government's power and influence in society and thus the economy.

I sure hope so, but the evidence for this will come what happens on the Democratic side of the aisle.  The Democrats are the political party that pulls the nation leftward on the political spectrum.  If the weight and power of the Democrats huddles in the center, then I think we will have evidence of Brian's thesis confirmed.  However, if the Democrats, after licking their wounds, elevate the progressive lodestars of the party (e.g. Fauxcahontas Warren) to leadership, court ever-increasing amounts of donor dollars laser focused on pet progressive issues (e.g. climate change), and turn up the volume of victimologist claims on behalf of putatively aggrieved groups (could that volume be any louder?), then we'll know that we have not hit an inflection point. 
Democrats will need to figure out how to win elections, and if we've truly changed focus as a society as to what we want out of our government, then you'll see Democrats marginalize the progressives, the Pelosicrats, for more moderate leadership.  I got at this point in a post entitled, "The Moderate Democrat, Can They Rebuild Him?"  Read the post.  In it I recount how the Republican base turned its party around (kicking and screaming I might add) in a few short years.  The Democrats could do the same, but after 2010 they failed to learn the lessons.  Maybe after 2014 they will, who knows.  Anyway, I have to highlight this highly prescient passage from that post, written in 2010 after Shellacking 1.0.  I foreshadow Shellacking 2.0 pretty nicely...
Now, granted I am not in on the progressive scene, but I see none of this happening on the left. There doesn't appear to be any tug of war, there is only one theme - voters are dumb and Obama didn't communicate his awesomeness properly. Nobody is saying, "we ought to rethink our policy agenda." And I am thrilled to see it. This guarantees years of wasted time and futile efforts. Obama can redouble his communication efforts all he wants and it won't do a lick of good, it might even add to the damage that the Democrats have suffered. There is no demand for what he and the Pelosicrats are selling and what they stand for. The sooner they realize this, the sooner they'll be competitive again. Don't hold your breath, the Blue Dogs have been wiped out and the Democrat caucus is as far left as ever. The Moderate Democrat will have to be built up again from scratch, marketed and sold along totally different lines. That will take time, but first it must take desire.


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