Wednesday, November 03, 2004

The Outcome - Election 2004

Kudos to MSNBC talk show host Joe Scarborough for correctly calling the presidential election months ago. His analysis has proven spot on, I'd say. The gay marriage controversy worked in Bush's favor, rallying his base, especially amongst evangelicals, who came out yesterday in record numbers. The administration's incompetence in Iraq didn't matter; his fiscal irresponsibility didn't matter; his failure to capture Osama didn't matter; his refusal to secure the southern border didn't matter. Bush voters overwhelmingly cited "moral values" as their lead reason for voting for him, ahead even of the "War on Terrorism.". "Moral values" in this case being code for "no gay marriage."

If I were a Democrat (and, I'm not), I'd be running around with Terry McAullife's severed and bloody head impaled high on a pike right now. Last night represented a devastating defeat for the Democrats. If they couldn't defeat George W. Bush despite the failure to find WMDs, the mounting casualty toll, and the shocking fiscal mismanagement in GOP-controlled Washington DC, how can they ever expect to win another national election? The party machine needs a complete, top-to-bottom, housecleaning.

In the wake of yesterday's route - which considering the weakened position in which Bush entered the race, is exactly what happened - Democrat strategists need to take a hard, long look at their usual repertoire of campaign themes and schemes. For example, the standard Democrat class warfare rhetoric (tax cuts for the rich) hasn't worked since the mid-70s. The Depression/New Deal Era has been over for some time; most people in the U.S. aspire to be rich and don't resent the wealthy. Democrats can't automatically expect to receive an overwhelming percentage of the minority vote anymore; it has become far too diverse. Ironically, this has been the result of the open door immigration that they have advocated for decades. Minorities groups differ greatly in economic status and possess widely disparate cultural priorities. The influx of Asian and Latino immigrants over the last 20 years was widely thought to simply add to the traditional pro-Democrat, African-American minority demographic; that does not seem to be working out as forecast. Worse for Democrats, even overwhelming minority showing doesn't guarantee victory. The Democrats must recalibrate their strategy to regain their appeal to the white majority vote, where their attractiveness has been badly eroded, largely by their embrace of racial preference programs and ethnic divisionism. Whites still comprise the biggest voting block; the party that wins that vote nationally wins the election, period. It may be politically incorrect to point that out, but it's true. And one might legitimately ask why it's permissible to speak of the "Black vote" or "Hispanic vote", but unacceptable to talk of the "white vote" anyway.

Democrats must also realize that while Howard Zinn, Noam Chomsky and their ilk play well in Madison, WI, Berkeley, CA, and New York City, their reflexive anti-Americanism only infuriates people elsewhere. The Left in general needs to cultivate pro-American intellectuals whose thinking isn't hopelessly wed to hackneyed Marxist ideology.

Finally, it remains to be seen whether the much-vaunted "youth vote" (ages 18-32) actually turned out this year. Hopeful commentators have been predicting its sudden appearance for years, but the young usually sit home on Election Day. But even if America's youth do flock to the polls, their contribution will usually be irrelevant since their votes will be drowned out by the Boomer and Geezer blocks, whose numbers overwhelm theirs, and who consistently vote.


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