Monday, April 24, 2006

Do the Democrats have it Wrapped up? Unlikely.

This is another reason why I read the Economist. Today's article rounds up the current difficulties of both parties for the upcoming elections.

A CARTOONIST tells it best. An elephant lies snoozing. Sensing the time is right, a crowd of Democratic mice surround it and move in for the kill. “What's the plan?” asks one. “Plan?” asks another. “Maybe we should have a meeting,” says a third. “What if we win?” frets a fourth.

He he. "I have a plan" anyone?

The junior senator from Illinois, Barack Obama, one of the Democrats' most admired politicians, has tried to make a joke of it. “You hear this constant refrain from our critics that Democrats don't stand for anything,” he remarked the other day. “That's really unfair. We do stand for anything.”

Now I know why they like this guy. He's funny!

Their weakest issue has long been national security. On Iraq, the Democrats are tarred by association with the loopier critics of the war in Iraq, and by outbursts of defeatism among their own leaders. Howard Dean, the party chairman, said last year that the “idea that we're going to win the war in Iraq is an idea which is just plain wrong.” As for the broader fight against terrorism, Democrats often sound as though they do not take it as seriously as other Americans. Moreover, Democratic activists are obsessed with the idea of impeaching Mr Bush. His alleged offence is to have ordered warrantless wiretaps to catch terrorists when, many lawyers argue, warrants were required. The party leaders do not want to make this a campaign issue, because Republicans would then say Democrats cared more about terrorists' privacy than American lives.

True. The Democrats just don't get national security. Their stance couldn't be more paradoxical. More security = no wiretapping = cut and run from Iraq = keep the US more safe? Hardly.

Mr. Bush, this has slithered from showing a surplus of $236 billion in 2000 to running a deficit of $318 billion in 2005. That would be worrying enough in normal circumstances, but with the baby-boom generation about to retire and start claiming Social Security (government pensions) and Medicare (government health care for the elderly), it heralds catastrophe.

Fiscal conservatism anyone? Come on, George, put the checkbook away already! (I'm serious by the way...)

The Republicans have a crackpot fringe, too, but the Democratic Party often sounds as though it consists of little else.

Ain't that the truth. They interviewed the fearless leader of the Daily Kos in the article. Talk about the lunatic fringe...

This article has an excellent roundup of problems both parties are facing. First, the Republicans need to become (gasp!) conservative again and realize that they are actually the ones in charge. The Democrats, on the other hand, need to actually stand for something if they ever plan on winning elections (ever). Finally, it would be nice for each party to get rid of their crazies, and in the Democrat's court it is nearly essential. All in all a great read. Check it out.

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