Thursday, May 01, 2003

And now for a little politics…

You political junkies may have noticed this article in the New York Times (which you can no longer read without paying because the idiotic Times charges for any article more than a week old!) last week:
National Desk | April 22, 2003, Tuesday

Late Edition - Final , Section A , Page 1 , Column 1

President Bush's advisers have drafted a re-election strategy built around staging the latest nominating convention in the party's history, allowing Mr. Bush to begin his formal campaign near the third anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks and to enhance his fund-raising advantage, Republicans close to the White House say.
Michael Tomasky has an article on the American Prospect website contrasting the Democrats’ spirited condemnation of Senator Rick Santorum’s anti-gay remarks, with their feeble response to the Republicans’ decision break a “gentlemen’s agreement" and hold the latest convention in American history so that they can stage it (in New York) as close to September 11 as possible.
And they in essence acknowledge, discreetly but quite openly, that the purpose is to squeeze as much political gain out of the attacks, and the national-security issue, as they can.

This is a many-layered offense -- to the traditions and integrity (such that remains) of the American political process, to the firefighters and police officers who did not give their lives so that Bush could later use their deaths to get a bounce in the polls, to every American citizen who doesn't drink Karl Rove's Kool-Aid, and to plain decency.
Tomasky offers four possible Democratic responses: hell raising by Democratic Senators, rescheduling their Convention for late August, not doing a Convention at all (thereby saving the money for the campaign), and fourth:
Plan, or encourage others to plan, a serious, thoughtful, humble, dignified series of counter-events for the week the Republicans are in New York that show how real Americans -- Republicans who wish to participate included -- commemorate somber occasions.
The last suggestion sounds like a good role for Labor.

But Tomasky’s a pessimist – or a realist: “Of course, none of this will happen. The Republicans will have their way, and Bush will maul them on the security issue. But, by God, Democrats will have the gay vote.”

But if there’s any message we can take away from this, it’s that it’s never too early to start thinking of strategies for Regime Change ’04. After all, there’s only 629 days, 19 hours, 29 minutes, 12 seconds until Inauguration Day 2005.