Skip to comments.Democrats' New Strategy: Almost Winning (Mark Steyn On The Couch Potato Democrats Alert)
Posted on 08/07/2005 5:39:34 AM PDT by goldstategop
The other day an official with a British teachers' union proposed that the concept of "failing" exams should be abolished. Instead of being given a "failing" grade, she said, the pupil would instead be given a "deferred success."
Oh, sure, you can scoff. But evidently the system's already being test-piloted in Howard Dean's Democratic Party. That's why the Dems' Congressional Campaign Committee hailed their electoral failure in last week's Ohio special election as a triumphant "deferred success." As their press release put it:
"In nearly the biggest political upset in recent history, Democrat Paul Hackett came within just a few thousand votes of defeating Republican Jean Schmidt in Ohio's Second Congressional District."
Yes, indeed. It was "nearly the biggest political upset in recent history," which is another way of saying it was actually the smallest political non-upset in recent history. Hackett was like a fast-forward rerun of the Kerry campaign. He was a veteran of the Iraq war, but he was anti-war, but he made solemn dignified patriotic commercials featuring respectful footage of President Bush and artfully neglecting to mention the candidate was a Democrat, but in livelier campaign venues he dismissed Bush as a "sonofabitch" and a "chicken hawk" who was "un-American" for questioning his patriotism.
And as usual this nearly winning strategy lost yet again -- this time to a weak Republican candidate with a lot of problematic baggage. Insofar as I understand it, the official Democratic narrative is that Bush is a moron who's nevertheless managed to steal two elections. Big deal. Up against this crowd, that's looking like petty larceny. After the Ohio vote, Dem pollster Stan Greenberg declared that "one of the biggest doubts about Democrats is that they don't stand for anything." That might have passed muster two years ago. Alas, the party's real problem is that increasingly there's no doubt whatsoever about it.
Fortunately, the Dems have found a new line of attack to counter the evil election-stealing moron. A few days ago, the Democratic National Committee put out a press release attacking Bush for being physically fit. It seems his physical fitness comes at the expense of the nation's lardbutt youth. Or as the DNC put it:
"While President Bush has made physical fitness a personal priority, his cuts to education funding have forced schools to roll back physical education classes and his administration's efforts to undermine Title IX sports programs have threatened thousands of women's college sports programs."
Wow. I noticed my gal had put on a few pounds but I had no idea it was Bush's fault. That sonofabitch chicken hawk. Just for the record, "his cuts to education funding" are cuts only in the sense that Hackett's performance in the Ohio election was a tremendous victory: that's to say, Bush's "cuts to education funding" are in fact an increase of roughly 50 percent in federal education funding.
Some of us wish he had cut education funding. By any rational measure, a good third of public school expenditures are completely wasted. But instead it's skyrocketed. And the idea that Bush is heartlessly pursuing an elite leisure activity denied to millions of American schoolchildren takes a bit of swallowing given that his preferred fitness activity is running. "Running" requires two things: you and ground. Short of buying every schoolkid some John Kerry thousand-dollar electric-yellow buttock-hugging lycra singlet, it's hard to see what there is about "running" that requires increasing federal funding.
Perhaps America could have a Running Czar or a National Commission on Running that would report back on the need for a Cabinet-level Runner-General. Perhaps Title IX needs to be expanded to provide a federal sneaker subsidy: a woman's right to shoes.
But I don't think so. Sitting behind yet another Vermont granolamobile bearing the bumper sticker "Bush Scares Me," I found myself thinking that perhaps the easiest way to reduce childhood obesity in American families might just to be to shout out, "Look! There's big scary Bush! Run! Run for your lives! No, wait, there's John Bolton, too! Better cut through the park before he puts his hands on his hips in an aggressive manner!" Indeed, when yesterday's coming man John Edwards dusts off his "Two Americas" stump speech -- the one with the heartwarming Dickensian vignette about the shivering girl whose parents can't afford to buy her a winter coat ($9.99 brand new from Wal-Mart) -- he might want to add a section about how an easy way for shivering coatless girls to keep warm is to run around the block a couple of times.
Speaking of shivering coatless girls in Bush's America, spare a thought for the underprivileged urchins of the Bronx. The Gloria Wise Boys & Girls Club, a nonprofit social-services organization in New York, receives millions of dollars in government funds to give disadvantaged youth in poor neighborhoods a leg up the ladder of life. But mysteriously much of the money wound up being diverted to the coffers of Air America, the liberal talk-radio network whose ratings are yet another example of "deferred success." The needs of disadvantaged Al Franken and his pals apparently outweigh those of Bronx welfare recipients. Perhaps Janeane Garofalo is the coatless girl John Edwards was talking about all those months. Air America looks like the broadcast version of the U.N. Oil-for-Food program, whereby money earmarked to save starving moppets somehow winds up in the bank accounts of bloated self-described do-gooders with political connections.
The DNC's Bush-is-the-reason-your-kid-is-fat press release is a convenient precis of the party's problem: While he runs rings around them, the Dems lounge about getting flabbier by the week and telling themselves it's all his fault they can barely move except to complain about Bush's Supreme Court nominee's kid being overly cute. What's the betting for 2006? The Dems will have a few more "nearly the biggest political upsets," while the Republicans will have the actual political upsets -- a couple more Senate seats? Including Robert C. Byrd's venerable perch in West Virginia?
Republicans may see the increasingly arthritic, corpulent, wheezing, flatulent Democratic Party as a boon for them, but I don't. Two-party systems need two parties, not just for the health of the loser but for that of the winner, too. Intellectually, philosophically, legislatively, it's hard to maintain the discipline to keep yourself in shape when the other guy just lies around the house all day.
(Denny Crane: "Sometimes you can only look for answers from God and failing that... and Fox News".)
So the Dems are going to claim victory even when they lose? Sounds like German propoganda in the last year of WWII.
And the idea that Bush is heartlessly pursuing an elite leisure activity denied to millions of American schoolchildren takes a bit of swallowing given that his preferred fitness activity is running. "Running" requires two things: you and ground. Short of buying every schoolkid some John Kerry thousand-dollar electric-yellow buttock-hugging lycra singlet, it's hard to see what there is about "running" that requires increasing federal funding.
You've got to love it.
Or Hirihito's announcement that the "War had not gone necessarily to Japan's advantage."
A slight understatement.
A woman's right to shoes...Brilliant Steyn.
We can only wish. If it ever did happen, I think a new party should arise that is somewhere to the right of the Republicans who have become to centrist on many issues.
Or Baghdad Bob "There are no Americans here!"
Now someone please photo shop Deans face into Bagdad Bob's picture. Or if it has been done then please show that pic.
Thanks in advance
(Denny Crane: "Sometimes you can only look for answers from God and failing that... and Fox News".)
I love this guy, he is always so 'right on'.
Hillary will move as far right as she thinks she has to in order to win because she knows the idiot Dem base won't turn on her no matter what.
Black Knight: 'Tis but a scratch.
Arthur: A SCRATCH? Your arm's off!
Black Knight: No it isn't!
Arthur: Well what's that then? (pointing to the arm lying on the ground)
Black Knight: I've had worse.
Arthur: You LIAR!
Black Knight: (kicking him again) Have at you!
Arthur: (getting up) You are indeed brave, Sir Knight, but the fight is mine!
Black Knight: Ohhh, had enough, eh?
Arthur: Look, you stupid b*****d, you've got no arms left!
Black Knight: Yes I have!
Black Knight: Just a flesh wound!
Man, that's gonna cost Mark bigtime. Check for bruises later.
Perhaps someday they'll want to call it a draw.
Steyn on Sunday morning: nectar from the heavens. Thanks so much for posting the whole article! There were WAY too many good digs (eg. Vermont granolamobile, the underprivileged Bronx kids, flabby and flatulent Dems) to pick just one!
That way too much common sense, Mark get with the program!
No, wait, there's John Bolton, too! Better cut through the park before he puts his hands on his hips in an aggressive manner!"
Does anybody else get the feeling that line was specifically for Bungling Biden? Whether not, it's hilarious!
Your wish is my command. LOL
We're on offense. In the past months we've scored several TDs (re-election of Bush, increasing the leads in the Senate and House, Bolton, the court appointees, Roberts, the gun legislation, and, yes, CAFTA). The Dems, down 48-0 are celebrating because we "just" kicked a FG. Amazing what losing does to your thinking.
The libs (Dems) have shackled themselves to the lead weight of multi-culturalism and multi-culturalism is best represented by Islam these days.
Awesome BushCountry. Thanks!
Those were my thoughts exactly, only you put it more succinctly!
Ouch! Oh, thats gotta hurt.
If they actually ran on what they believed they would never win another election. Thats why they have to keep changing names now and again.
Liberal...no wait, everyone knows what that means and thinks it is bad...lets go with Progressive...yeah, that polls much better.
Soon enough they will have to change again.
To quote the Bard:
"What's in a name? That which we call a rose
By any other word would smell as sweet."
Except these days it would read:
"What's in a name? That which we call a liberal
By any other word would still rant as incoherently."
Mark Steyn nails the Democrats to the wall yet again. Sort of like shooting fish in a barrel, yet Steyn does it with such panache.
You have to remember the Fourth Estate. The go-along-and-get-along national "objective" journalism cabal. Under the First Amendment, as modified by the FCC censorship of humility, journalism is arrogant towards those who do not conform to its concensus and flattering toward those who do.
Until and unless FR takes over national politics, there will always be a party of the left which journalism flatters while it bullies everyone else.
Missed it by that much ||
And that's the problem. The democrats have become the party of narrowly defined, single-issue special interest groups that provide a predictible but insufficient number of votes -- but tie their hands when it comes to legislation because almost every issue America faces today goes against one of these interest groups. All democrats can do is whine, carp, and blame Bush. Pathetic.
this is beautiful. wonder why this column doesn't appear in MY paper?
Mark Steyn ping.
"I'm convinced the reason the Dummies were so disappointed by Bush's win last year was because they believed their own propaganda."
Amen to that. The MSM was eagerly shilling for them and leading them down the primrose path to perdition.
Thank you for not excerpting this!
A great line.
Eternal adolescence, you say? More like perpetual toddlerhood to me. I wouldn't even accord them the dignity and gravitas commonly associated with kindergarten.
The election went 48-52. It wasn't THAT close. Hardly a squeaker.
Dems do nothing but lie!!
Well, if it were the Senate, 48-52 would be a victory for the 48, provided that they (Democrats) embrace the philosophy of the stop sign and the agenda of the road block. The Democrats are too firmly entrenched in senatorial tradition to make any sort of sense to the rest of the American people.
'Feel good" propaganda only works to the benefit of those who know better.
The man formerly known as Mark Steyn has entered the Federal Witness Protection Program. He has been given a new identity and a new home without his family.
With Steyn, the pen is indeed mighty.