DNC rumbles

Who wants the DNC?Gadflyer.com has an email from ex-Gore speechwriter Kenneth Baer that reads, "I worked for [DNC chair] Terry McAuliffe in 2001-2002, and while the man has its shortcomings, I was never one of those who called for his head every time the Donkey staggered and stumbled. ... But the DNC needs a different kind of leader for the next four years. I know dailykos and others in the progressive blogosphere think otherwise, but there is still plenty that's useful in the party apparatus. Nevertheless, the party as institution must change. It must become more entrepreneurial. It must adopt, embrace and devise new tools. It must recognize the power of the Dean/netroots phenomenon while understanding its limitations. I see one individual who is both vested in the Democratic Party and who understands the ways in which it has atrophied. Simon Rosenberg of the New Democrat Network has the strong establishment credentials still required to run the party. But he also recognizes that more than a little fine-tuning is needed. He understands the imperative of building a new message infrastructure to rival the Murdoch/Scaife/Drudge axis of evil on the right." Baer continues: "Rosenberg also gets the importance of the Latino vote. He has been willing to challenge his New Democrat brethren at the DLC, whose jihad against Howard Dean was not only nasty and counterproductive, but also suggested their own flirtation with irrelevance." More: "I do not know Simon, though I do -- full disclosure -- have friends in his employ (who, it should be noted, have not pitched this idea to me). Simon Rosenberg strikes me as the one person who can toss out the bathwater while saving the baby. More than saving the baby, he can help nurture it to vigorous adulthood" (NJ Hotline). Way back in the Summer and Fall of 2003, when we were flying high with Dean and the Netroots, there was one guy in DC that figured out what was going on, and took a lot of shit for trying to parlay that understanding to the DC Democratic Party establishment. That was Simon. I have an easier solution. Why don't we just call the NDN the new DNC?

Tags: Democrats (all tags)

Comments

18 Comments

links to Simon Rosenberg video and stories
Can be found here:

http://www.newdem.org/leaders/rosenberg.php

by heymister 2004-11-05 07:55AM | 0 recs
The only plus...
well, not the only plus, I can see to this really bad election year is that the grassroots voice may be exactly whom they turn to for new leadership.

Again, we need to collect our ideas and deliver them to the leadership. I posted something on Chris' blog, I'll add it to my diary.

Let's turn this boat around and drive it straight into the heart of the enemy territory! Seems like a great statesman did that once before...

by Green Irishboy 2004-11-05 08:05AM | 0 recs
Can someone help me dicipher...
...what this means: "But the DNC needs a different kind of leader for the next four years. I know dailykos and others in the progressive blogosphere think otherwise..."

Does this mean that Kos likes(ed) the DNC and McAuliffe. Based on what of I know of his politics this doesn't seem right...please inform...
by cgilbert01 2004-11-05 08:37AM | 0 recs
Re: Can someone help me dicipher...
I don't know what kos likes, but this 'kossak' can't stand McAuliffe.  Anybody with a track record like his shouldn't have to be fired, he should have the honor to resign.  
by LionelEHutz 2004-11-05 09:12AM | 0 recs
Re: Can someone help me dicipher...
I think the point is that Kossacks don't like the DNC or Terry M. in the current incarnation.  He is arguing for saving the DNC but with systemic cultural changes.  IMHO.
by aProgressive 2004-11-05 09:54AM | 0 recs
Re: Can someone help me dicipher...
agreed....
by shux 2004-11-05 10:11AM | 0 recs
Re: Can someone help me dicipher...
I find it clearer when I look at the rest of the second sentence you quoted: "I know dailykos and others in the progressive blogosphere think otherwise, but there is still plenty that's useful in the party apparatus." He's saying "dailykos and others [don't believe that]...there is still plenty that's useful in the party apparatus."
by slvn 2004-11-05 10:15AM | 0 recs
Re: Can someone help me dicipher...
Thanks everyone for the clarification...I didn't see the Kos I know, liking very much about McAuliffe at all...
by cgilbert01 2004-11-05 12:18PM | 0 recs
I do know Simon
and he would be a great dark horse choice.  He has been behind the scenes long enough to both understand the machinery and to understand the shortcomings issues that McAuliffe seemingly represents.

He also knows that we need a fresh approach as liberals/progressives and that we need to 'sell' our story to the rest of the country rather than let the right continue to define us.  Our infrastructure is in its infancy compared to the right and we need to continue to grow it.  Morally, we are on the right side of the ledger, i.e. we walk the walk whereas they only talk the talk.

Now is the time for us to focus on the mid-terms.  The real upside in this loss is that we now have the very real opportunity to impeach and convict if we can get our house in order in '06.

Simon would be a huge step in the right direction for us progressives to counter the right-wing infrastructure.

by joby 2004-11-05 10:26AM | 0 recs
Entrepreneurial?
When I hear the word "entrepreneurial" in this context - and this isn't the first time - I feel like reaching for my gun - (and I don't even have one).

What are you saying, we want to bring in some smarmy cretins to try and make a buck off progressive politics?  How the hell is that any solution?  You know who's entrepreneurial in Democratic politics?  The Chicago Democratic machine - government as the family business.

How about the Diebold entrepreneurs who sell their defective crap to clueless (or worse, corrupt) governments.  Is that the entrepreneurialism we want?  I don't think so.

If you want to talk about new technologies and the internet, fine, there's a place for that.  But if someone's doing this to make himself rich (and I don't know anyone who fills that bill), he won't last.

Someone, please explain what you mean when you use this word here.

by sTiVo 2004-11-05 03:03PM | 0 recs
Re: Entrepreneurial?
I think what we are talking about here is taking a very new and fresh approach, "thinking outside the box," being creative, and all the other very positive qualities of entrepreneurism.  After all, that is what America is all about.  The DNC DOES need a makeover.  Perhaps all the dialog about national vision will result in a new face to the party.  However, I am inclined to think the DNC needs to be the BENEFICIARY of the new thinking rather than the LEADER of the effort.
by gayntom 2004-11-05 03:22PM | 0 recs
Re: Entrepreneurial?
Well, fine.  Who could be against creativity and thinking outside the box?  I still wouldn't use "enterpreneurial" as the word to describe these qualities.  I don't view "entrepreneurialism" as an unalloyed good.  Maybe I spent too long in an Internet startup not to see the bullshit so often spread by the people who thought of themselves as entrepreneurs.

There's also this: we're trying to reach the non-privileged.  The non-elites.  The people who've lost their crummy but decently-paying jobs because some entrepreneur thought it was a great idea to outsource them.

So sure, think outside the box, but never forget the democracy is a game not always won by the cleverest.  A little less internet hype - a little more grass roots, please.

by sTiVo 2004-11-05 03:47PM | 0 recs
I suspect
Being somewhat familiar with Simon and his preoccupations, I think what he would mean by "entreprenurial" is building the outreach machine of the Democratic party -- going out and finding the people who ought to be voting for us, and convincing them to. It's building the media machine, investing in the blogosphere, and abandoning the strategies of either assuming that we will naturally win as soon as everyone else realizes we're right, or assuming that we'll only win if we become Republicans too.

As was pointed out above, he was one of an extremely few people in positions of Dem party influence who recognized the promise of the Dean thing, regardless of its outcome. He's all about the grass roots, of both the virtual and turf varieties.

by rusty 2004-11-07 07:09PM | 0 recs
DNC needs a makeover
Those of us who supported General Clark remember that the DNC  was no friend of his candidacy, and they, along with the Republicans, did their upmost to derail Clark and Dean who were the only two non-beltway candidates.

Well, we are tired of Senators and Congressmen running for President. They just don't wash. We need dynamic leadership of the DNC that is not controlled by party hacks, insiders, handlers, enablers and just plain old guard play it safe politicians.

We need to adopt the methods of the internet first used effectively by Dean then even as well by Clarkies. In the final phase of the NH campaign the Clark bloggers at CCN (http://www.forclark.com) were out performing even the Deaniacs. And the eblocking methods of Clark's website was a powerful tool in helping him win Oklahoma.

We need the innovations of the Clarkies and Deaniacs to replace the worn tactics of yesteryear. Make Dean Chairman of the DNC and run Clark/Obama for the 08 ticket. Then we will have a ticket that can win. Nix to Edwards and Richardson. Take a look at the poll MyDD is running. The top contenders are, in this order, Clark, Obama and Dean. Gore and Hillary are nowhere, and Edwards lags behind.

This is the future of the Democratic Party.

by noelschutz 2004-11-05 11:10PM | 0 recs
Re: DNC needs a makeover
P.S. Forclark.com is still running strong and at the marching orders of General Clark supported Kerry. And on the ground, Clarkies across the nation mobilized to work with the Kerry teams. We are still here and we are here to stay.
by noelschutz 2004-11-05 11:12PM | 0 recs
ForClark
I love that forclark.com is still going. It was virtually ignored by anyone who originally ran it for months. I don't even know who's running it now. It's great evidence that you can't really kill a popular scoop site, short of pulling the plug. :-)
by rusty 2004-11-07 07:11PM | 0 recs
DNC makeover
Howard Dean for DNC chairman. We need his energy and Yeahaghs. He's a moderate who has proven he can connect with the party's left. He'll be a noisy democratic voice in a time when we dare not be quiet.

Harry Reid is a good reliable guy. But we need a warrior as minority leader. The GOP misleadership will try to destroy whoever holds the post, so whoever holds it needs to be in a safe seat, and needs to be able to both stand up to them and to cooperate with them. That man is John Kerry. He isn't going away. And he isn't going to run for President again.

Hillary won't be the 2008 nominee. She is great, many in the blue states love her, but she is too despised by the professional haters to have a chance at capturing the swing vote. I think Edwards/Obama may be the 2008 dream ticket, depending on what Edwards does with the next 2 years.

It will make no difference if Democrats can't recapture our share of state and local government. This election proved we need to win by 10% to break even in 'counted votes'.

My Ohio will go blue again, we have a law that requires voter varifiable paper trails on all ballots, which was conveniently not implemented for this election. It will be in effect for the 2006 general election (unless the Republic house, senate and governor overturn it in the meantime).

by nmark 2004-11-06 09:38AM | 0 recs
I was an intern in Simon's office
at NDN.  He is an amazing fundraiser, and has lots of impressive visions for the country, but his ego is enormous-and often his biggest stumbling block.  Sometimes I got the feeling that his interest was not so much in furthering any cause, but just furthering his own career, and taking the party under his control.  Often people ask what the NDN is all about...they have this enormous hispanic project, an incredible budget for commercials, a federal PAC, obscure relationships with many other 527's, and the balls to hop on the Dean bandwagon.  Interestingly, they've managed to confuse almost every democrat in the country.  What is the NDN really???  Truly, its just the manifestation of Simon's ego.  Do we want the party under such scatterbrained control?

So, the question is this: Is this a crippling quality to have in the DNC chair?  Or a ubiquitous characteristic of all people who breathe the Washington air?  Or a good thing?  I'm not sure

by CptnDelano 2004-11-07 05:52AM | 0 recs

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