Friday, November 05, 2004
This isn't too negative, is it? (On the other hand, who cares?)
I like the snark about Little Russ. The entire Washington-based press corps, especially the TV smarmbots, deserve all the snark we can dump on them for their chickenshit deference the past 3 years. George W. Bush is the chief executive, not a divine right king, not Caesar. If the press were really doing their job, they'd be all over him - the way they should be all over any president of whatever party. Danny Concannon on The West Wing is a perfect model. Yes, since we see the world on that show through C. J.'s eyes, he drives us crazy, too. But his job is - and every journalist's job should be - to tell us what we need to know, not what the White House thinks we should know or wants us to know. It has been years since they're really done their job. If they want us to lay off the snark, they know how to make that happen.
As a parting gift, I leave the Senate Democrats with their master plan for the next two years. Here it is, boys and girls. Everybody OK? Take notes if you have to take them. Ready? Here it is.
P.S. -- A word about mandates. A mandate never really exists, not even as a result of an actual landslide. It is not something you win; just ask Tom DeLay and the Impeachers, if you don't believe me. It's something you claim. It is something you are granted, usually by people who ought to know better. It's a vast and enormous bluff. Quite simply, if the Democratic senators follow Recommended Plan A above, then C-Plus doesn't have a mandate, no matter how hard Little Russ stamps his feet when Jack Welch whistles. And anybody who thinks 51 percent is license to end the progressive income tax, chloroform Social Security, create a permanently troglodytic federal judiciary, invade Teheran, and generally take the national polity back to the 1890's is betting heavy behind a low pair. Don't fold. Don't call. Raise.
I'm not sure the Democrats have the guts to simply say No and make it stick. I don't know that Harry Reid is inclined to be that kind of leader, and I don't know that the rest of the Democratic remnant in the Senate has the stomach to go along if he tries. Clinton ran against the Republicans for blocking all his plans, but they were the majority in the legislature, so it may not work for Bush, although he will doubtless try.
It would be fun to see, but I will believe it when I see it.