Wednesday, October 20, 2021

A better slogan for Democrats? The GOP is rigging the election system to turn losers into winners.

 Messaging by sloganeering is a skill the Democrats rarely master.   With the likely defeat of the voting rights bills or a filibuster ban carved out in the Senate,  Democrats need to sharpen their message to carry the fight to the state. and local elections. However, when it comes to slogans, they are mealy-mouthed and too verbose in reaching out to those not yet in their camp. 

One of my pet peeves is using "voter suppression" as the slogan word. Those claiming suppression was bad were mostly Africa Americans, and coupling it with the racial angle of it. As the targeted ones, that is understandable. It is not just a civil rights issue.  It does not tell how this suppression affects everyone else  and how democracy is subverted.." Democracy on the ballot' is another nice slogan but to be effective, it a) depends that those who may not be aware of a)what democracy is and b) how the GOP is hurting it and c) how the alternative of "autocracy" is bad for them.  

.  Here is my stab: " The GOP is rigging the election system".  Couple that with they do it"  to turn losers into winners" in future elections. The subset to that can be brief::"by making it harder and more inconvenient for everyone to vote, putting their flunkies in charge of counting votes, and permitting local legislatures to overturn the result they do not like.". ..  The  "rigging" charge can also serve as a sharp counter-attack  to the big lie, that the election was stolen was never proved and has become just their made-up excuse for their power grab legislation. . :  


Sunday, October 17, 2021

The answer to those who are sabotaging democracy? Pass the voting rights bills

  Here is why we need to pass voting reform legislation and to crack down on extreme domestic terrorists. The most vocal champions of voting rights have been African Americans, but all who care about democracy as a system of governance need to be equally passionate because there is so much at stake. What threats to kidnap and terrorize elected officials in Michigan, at the US Capitol on January 6, local school boards, and elected vote counting officials across America has illustrated is that if an extreme group can not win at the ballot box, then it resorts to terrorism. Over half of the GOP approves the use of force to protect their way of life and nearly half think going beyond the law is fine, too, per a June Monmouth poll. Most Republicans Say Force May Be Required to Save 'Traditional' America: Poll (" FYI: peaceful assemblies to redress grievances are protected by the Constitution. Violent actions are not. John Eastman, the Trumpist attorney who provided a blueprint to Trump for a strategy to overthrow the 2020 elecction is now proposing to arm sheriffs as militias. Claremont Institute’s descent into Trumpian extremism embodied in law-enforcement strategy ( If the last election did not turn out the way a group wanted, then they rig the system so that even if the group loses the popular vote this time, then the next time they will be able to control whose votes are counted and how and to restrict the opposition's access to the ballot box. They support and pass legislation so that they can control who certifies the election in order to ignore the popular vote. When election districts are defined by boundaries they, gerrymander them so fewer of the districts will exist that reflect the will of opponents. It may be clever politics, but it is dirty politics. rigging the system to install and keep a losing party in power. This country has spent years attempting to insure the will of all of the people can be expressed through fair elections. That has been our soul, but now for the GOP, their soul is to do whatever it takes and to manipulate and abuse once upon a time democratic and fair processes.

For a comprehensive analysis of how states have attempted to twist vote outcomes to keep the=r party in power, go to Voting Laws Roundup: October 2021 | Brennan Center for Justice

For the most recent report by the FBI on incidents of domestic terrorism, see U.S. Domestic Terrorism Investigations Have More Than Doubled -FBI Director | Top News | US News

Claremont Institute’s descent into Trumpian extremism embodied in law-enforcement strategy (

Friday, October 15, 2021

Is "democracy is on the ballot " a good slogan for Democrats in 2022 and 2024?

 I heard a Democratic candidate for governor in another state roll out his announcement using the slogan: "Democracy is on the ballot".  Not a bad slogan at all, but it is not one that has any meaning without an explanation.  It also has no relevance to how it would affect public policy either without connecting it to the results that affect people's lives.  The Democrats have some really messaging problems. If that is to be used as the slogan for state races, there needs to be a more direct connection to how it hurts  "you the voter". as the end result because as a slogan it needs some further explanation and fleshing out..

  Examples of explanations: " The GOP wants to rig future elections so that even if they do not represent what the majority wants, they can rule as the minority party anyway.  They want to make sure every vote does not count  They want to put their party hacks in charge of deciding which votes will be counted and how; and if they still lose, they want the legislatures they control to ignore how what the majority in their state want and overturn or throw into chaos the election results by failing to certify the election results.    That is not how democracy is supposed to work/ The will of the majority determines what policies will be/ Ir is not rigging the system so that the minority. rules.".What this means for public policy that affects people's lives is not hard to explain,.     For example, the majority, per polls, want preK ed and childcare and the GOP is against it. Should the majority's voice be heard and determine the direction of their state on these popular issues? There are. other issues in the reconciliation bill that also have large public support to which the GOP opposes as well.  

  Democrats need to focus on plain language and avoid relying solely on what has become jargon:  "voter suppression" or even "autocracy".  and" the big lie".  and put it in terms of how it would hurt voters themselves.  Those are terms that describe GOP strategy to get you to agree to let them sabotage democracy .but using them does not tell the ordinary voter how this affects them and their ability to cope with everyday matters. 

Tuesday, October 12, 2021

The soul of America is at stake. Biden was right

Joe Biden was elected because he was not  Donald Trump. In fact, as a person, he was Trump's polar opposite.  Biden was, fair, earnest, positive,  logical, moral, experienced, and a known quantity.  He was not elected because of his build-back better slogan. It never caught on because he never explained it in a way that was memorable. It is not working now because neither he nor the progressives have explained it well enough. There is a scramble now to give some time to explain it. When its elements are taken separately, they are popular but are not tied to the legislation in voters' minds... It is not an inspiring theme to just list a shorthand of what is in it. Obama had a hard time even selling the ACA because no one grasped the details or even how it was affordable..  Just waiting a couple of years until the benefits are experienced and slowly it dawns on people is too late for the next election cycle.   Hillary Clinton had the same problem.  She would bullet point her public policy proposals like a laundry list..and note how it would benefit segments of her targeted demographics again and again until the eyes of the audience would glaze over. The pressure is on both Biden and progressives to do the same thing.:" List its title and be done" is not inspiring or enough. It must be put in a context that means something to ones' gut. 

Biden should return to his original campaign theme, The Battle for the Soul of America.  and show how his BBB fits in. Above all, he now has enough evidence and experience in the past year, he should contrast it with the lack of soul and the damage to our soul committed by both the GOP leaders and the former president lusting for a second term and still in control of the GOP.  We cannot separate Trump from his party because they are one in the same now. The answer is not to see the trees instead of the forest. We need to see how what the forest is and why the trees contribute to it. The forest that we could have lost in the weeds is what is the soul of America. The Trump movement has become the beetle that is eating away at what has been our soul. The soul is, the ideal we have set for selves in the past and have not always met, but we have not abandoned it yet.  The soul is severely under attack. and Biden needs to show how it is happening..

 We know what has been the soul of America that made us so great.  It is hard work and being rewarded for that work.  We have made it hard for so many in America to even make enough to make a living. We can raise the minimum wage and it is rising, but we can do more to help them afford child care, give them an education for jobs we need today without going into debt, so we can have an extra two years of free education in community college. We can; help them plan their family and pregnancies and give them the tools to; keep them healthy so they can work and afford their health care. We know what helps women stay in the workforce: choice and vaccines for themselves and for those they love. and help to care for. those who are their responsibility. 

What the soul of America is not: a government that puts the power in the hands of those who are the minority. voting block.. regardless of which party. is in power and denies the ability of those they lord over to express themselves in the ballot box.   The soul is a government to reflect the will of its people, the majority, but it also protects the rights of those with other views and with complaints to demonstrate peacefully and to make their case in the media.  That is the soul we once were and should be in the future.

The soul of America we know looks at facts and data and asks questions of science and demands evidence before developing public policy.  To do otherwise on a whim or a theory is to court failure:.the" old garbage in, garbage out"  formula.. 

The soul of America is to promote fairness, not to excuse corruption or to condemn whistleblowers the moment they present their evidence whether it is in business or government,. 

The soul of America is fair play. We make the effort to provide umpires and referees in sports. It is that same sense of fairness that should be the soul of America in public policy and in our lives and our businesses.  It is not the soul of America to support cheaters and below-the-belt attackers and to look the other way when we see it..  However, fairness calls for instant replays and some checks and balances and consequences to constrain corruption of those in power with proof and evidence are for all to see.  Simply calling someone a cheater and a liar and whine they were a victim of foul play without evidence and proof is why we have had hearings and investigative reporters.  They are to be heard, not stonewalled.  That is the essence of a fair judicial and media system.  That is the soul of America and the way we learn who does not play fair or seeks to feather their own nests of power and wealth. Glorifying cheaters and law evaders who make it big is not part of our ideal.. Approval of robber barons and fraudsters is not the soul of America.