Setting MyDD Up for 2008 - Updated: 96 Donors, $8,486.29
by Matt Stoller, Fri Nov 10, 2006 at 12:34:27 PM EST
We're ready to go, and make huge strides again. And we're asking you for $10000 to do it. Hopefully we can get 100 donors to each give $100. There are a lot of projects we want to explore this Presidential year. We're starting to use video, and we're going to work on helping more primary challenges, and we're going to continue with our party building activites. There's a lot more that we can do this Presidential cycle, but we can't do it without resources.
There are a lot of places you can put your money, so why should you put it here?
Well, this cycle, the gains of the netroots have been stunning. Reach back to the moment after the 2004 election, and the losses afterwards. At times we were completely despondent. Had our party really lost to this corrupt banal bully? Did the Democrats really let the Bankruptcy Bill go through? Would Roberts and Alito really sit on the court without a fight? Could the President openly torture and wiretap without consequence? Would the President really let an American city populated by the poor and disposessed die, and use it as an excuse to shovel money to his friends? Would Senator Landrieu really let it happen without a fuss? Every day saw a new outrage, a new scandal, and a serious degradation of our political climate, and our actual climate. This led us to ask ourselves, was this really our party, and our country?
And the answer was a resounding 'hell yes!'. Because within the American system there is a strain of entrepreneurial flexibility and greatness that allows leadership to emerge anywhere. As the climate became more outrageous, we immediately got to work, though it didn't look like it at the time if you read the newspaper or watched cable news, or even listened to Democratic insiders. We installed Howard Dean as DNC Chair. The silent revolution of state parties began. We stopped Bush on Social Security, working with the Senate, the House, and a strong coalition of groups. As 2006 began, we put net neutrality on the map as an issue, raised massive amounts of money for candidates, and fought in primaries. On August 8, we kicked Joe Lieberman out of the party and changed the national dialogue on Iraq. We Google-bombed, local blogged, and set up recount watches and voter protection sites. The use-it-or-lose-it campaign forced safe Democrats to pony up or look stupid. Volunteers built campaigns that became viable.
And on November 7th, Democratic majorities won election in the House and Senate. More than that, we persuaded the American people that the conservative agenda was an illusion based on hate and anger. All our work paid off. And now we move forward.
Imagine what we can do in 2008, in a Presidential cycle. Lots of cool stuff that you'll be involved in. If you help us pay our rent, we'll keep pushing. If you don't, well, we'll keep pushing, but we'll do it hobbled by benefactors that don't have your interests at heart. A key principle of the progressive movement is that the truth is not cheap, but it is far less expensive in the long-run than propaganda. Right now our media is controlled by automobile makers and beauty product marketers, because they pay for it. Sure you'll get a kernel of truth in there along with the spin, but the basic rule is that he who pays makes the rules. One of the most phenomenal experiences I had this cycle was in the last two weeks in Connecticut blogging, because you were paying for it. I no longer felt beholden to anyone but you, but more than that, I wanted to do a much better job writing for you. My livelihood wasn't dependent on the powerful people in the party with access to a consistent revenue stream. I didn't have to be on Hillary Clinton's payroll, whether through ads or through consulting contracts. And that's because I was on your payroll, and that changed what I wrote and how I acted. I became more responsive to you, and not my sources or the powerful interests in the Democratic Party. It was a very clear demonstration that he who pays sets the rules, and you set the rules.
That's what your money will go towards, infrastructure support for people who can use it to ensure that progressives are represented in the party, and that we preserve an intellectually honest arena for progressive politics.
Aside from all that, MyDD is a good piece of progressive infrastructure. Chris and Jonathan offer better and more transparent forecasting than anyone out there, and it's free and open. We all work on party-building, with campaigns like 'Use it or lose it', Google-bombing, Adwatch, the netroots survey, and net neutrality. We covered Dean's election, we covered Lamont's rise, and we covered the consequences of this election, both good and bad.
So I guess what I'm saying is that we played a part in the victories of the past two years and past week, and we have ideas about how to extend and amplify what all of us have built. If you directly support us, you'll be getting a lot of progressive bang for the buck, all on display on this blog for you to criticize and participate in. And if you don't, that's ok too. I hope you do give to another blogger, as I feel it's incredibly important to make what we do viable and directly responsive to the progressive base. Lots of us have donate buttons on the side of the blog. Or if you're a student or you just don't have the money to support us, please work in other ways to build progressive power. All of us can work in our own ways to create a new country. And we'll be asking for money again, for various projects and for general support of what we're doing.
Anyway, lots of us dug deep to help Democrats this cycle. I responded to almost every ask from bloggers I read, and I gave to every netroots candidate, many of them multiple times. Let's keep it going.
UPDATE: Ok, we've gotten 66 donors for a total of $6,727.99. In five hours. Wow. Only 34 more to hit our goal.
UPDATE, AGAIN: We're up to 96 donors at $8,486.29.