Open Thread

Tell the world what is on your mind.

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38 Comments

Re: Open Thread

How many of you are figure skating fans? I'd like to post a non-political figure skating diary !

by carolinezhang 2007-06-12 11:41AM | 0 recs
Ethanol the Republican Edge in 08

The new economic boom in the heartland is due exclusively to the heavily subsidized Ethanol program.

So the question is; will the Republicans benefit from economic well being in rural areas or will the war, which is disproportionally hitting rural families due to the lack of economic opportunities in the past, move these voters to the Democrats?

by Organic George 2007-06-12 11:47AM | 0 recs
The GOP has lost its stranglehold on rural America

This hasn't gotten nearly enough coverage.  The Center for Rural Strategies has run a new poll of rural voters, showing a 21% shift from the GOP to Democrats.

Among the findings of the Rural Strategies poll are:

* Rural voters deliver a narrow plurality to a generic Democratic candidate for President: 46 - 43 percent. In contrast, President Bush won the rural vote in 2004 by 19 points.

* Voters are not inspired by any candidate for president, including Fred Thompson, who draws a modest 22 percent favorable, 18 percent unfavorable score among the 52 percent who are familiar with him.

* At the Congressional level, voters prefer Democrats in named trial heats 46 - 44 percent.
Iraq poses challenges for both parties. While a narrow majority opposes the war, nearly 60 percent are close to someone serving or who has served in the fighting. This is not a "television war" for rural families.

* President Bush's job approval numbers have dropped from 54 percent approve, 43 percent disapprove just prior to the 2004 election to 44 percent approve, 52 percent disapprove currently.
Nonetheless, rural America remains a deeply conservative place (50 percent conservative in self-ascribed terms) and there is little evidence of shifting ideologies in this survey.

If you follow the link to the analyt's memo you get a very good idea of the meaning of all this.  On page 5 of the report, there's this section about presidential preference.  If you read it, it basically supports the points that Mudcat Sanders made yesterday that pissed off Chris Bowers so much.  

Rural voters are key to 2008.  If the Democratic candidate can compete in rural areas like Congressional Dems did in 2006, and like Clinton I did in 1992 and 1996 (but not Gore in 2000), then the battleground shifts.  States like Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Ohio shift from battlegrounds to strongly leaning blue, and the battleground moves to the Upper South (Tennesee, Arkansas, West Virginia, Virgina, and North Carolina.)

I've actually run through with the numbers, and looked at the shift if we assume a 21% shift among rural voters, with all else remaining the same.  Now this is subject to the ecological fallacy, but it's a start.  If there's a 21% shift in rural voters towards the Democratic party, the GOP loses Arkansas, Tennesee, West Virgina, Virginia, and North Carolina.  Hell they lose lose Mississippi.  

Of course the truth of the matter is probably somewhat more complex.  I suspect that the 21% shift isn't across the board.  I think that much of the shift is occurring in highly rural states like Vermont and Maine in the Northeast, and more significantly, among rural voters in the Great Lakes states.  In the deep South, I think that the numbers are somewhat less encouraging.  Remember, this is the home of the Black Belt, where a very large proportion of the population is black.  And these rural, black voters, are most likely already voting for Democrats.  

It's worth noting though that the Alabama and Mississippi legistlatures are both heavily Democratic.

I think that the real implication of a shift among rural voters is that Republicans lose their base in Ohio, Wisconsin, and Pennsylvania.  And they have to worry about (and spend money defending) states in the upper South (like West Virginia, Tennesee, Virginia, Arkansas, and North Carolina)  If we can fight them there we won't have to fight nearly as hard in the Midwestern states that put us over the top.

by ManfromMiddletown 2007-06-12 12:29PM | 0 recs
Re: The GOP has lost its stranglehold on rural Ame

The 21% is a meaningless number. Severely inflated and misleading. We already had confirmation last year. Many polls in '06 suggested Democrats could win the rural vote. But according to the House NEP, Republicans won the rural vote 51-48. That was the same 5-option category where Bush had the 59-40 edge in the '04 NEP. But keep in mind the reference points. Bush won the national popular vote by roughly 2.5 points. So he fared about 16 points better among rurals. Democrats in '06 won the House vote by 7 or 8 points, if I remember correctly. So the net swing, even in a second term midterm and every generic edge going our way, was only 5 or 6 points among rurals. They still voted much more GOP than the nation as a whole, but it declined from +16 to +10 or +11.

by Gary Kilbride 2007-06-12 01:12PM | 0 recs
Re: The GOP has lost its stranglehold on rural Ame

So the increasing cost of food thus the shrinking of market share to Mexican imports due to the diversion of capital into the stupid ethanol program which benefits only large agribusiness is not having any effect on the rural vote as fuel prices soar out of site due to the Iraq thingy?

Uh...huh...and we are safer from the nasty tehhahists.

The HIll said so so it must be so.

Bah.

Utter bullshit it is that the American people, rural yokels included, have not seen through BushCo. and it's lies.

Look at the 2006 election returns homer.

by Pericles 2007-06-12 01:30PM | 0 recs
Re: The GOP has lost its stranglehold on rural Ame

Good blogging with Mudcat going on over at the Time Blog.  Much different than yesterday.  Seems like you guy would be happy rural America is in play.  I've never seen such good news treated with such sad faces.

by Nick Stump 2007-06-12 01:37PM | 0 recs
Re: Open Thread

I like figure skating. I prefer gymnastics.

My great home state leads the way on Net Neutrality! Get Stoller on the story!

http://www.dailykos.com/story/2007/6/12/ 15125/2056

by david mizner 2007-06-12 11:50AM | 0 recs
Re: Open Thread

do you actually follow figure skating? Do you know whom 'Caroline Zhang' is?

by carolinezhang 2007-06-12 11:54AM | 0 recs
The next Michelle Kwan?

Are you Caroline Zhang or just a fan? Her US Figure Skating bio is below...

http://www.usfigureskating.org/AthleteBi o.asp?id=34948

by joejoejoe 2007-06-12 11:58AM | 0 recs
Re: The next Michelle Kwan?

Surprise, surprise. We do have a FS fan who knows a couple of skaters' names!

Great, i'm encouraged.

by carolinezhang 2007-06-12 12:01PM | 0 recs
I'm a fan of Google

I had to look it up.

by joejoejoe 2007-06-12 12:04PM | 0 recs
huh?

This thread is such a funny non-sequitur for an elections blog.

Anyone here a fan of TIG welding aluminum sheet metal?  Using an oxy-acetylene torch to heat up the sheet first makes it easier and more fun.

by aip 2007-06-12 02:03PM | 0 recs
NCAA bans live blogging?

The NCAA has banned live blogging from it's events.

From the Louisville Courier-Journal:
"A Courier-Journal sports reporter had his media credential revoked and was ordered to leave the press box during the NCAA baseball super-regional yesterday because of what the NCAA alleged was a violation of its policies prohibiting live Internet updates from its championship events.

Gene McArtor, a representative of the NCAA baseball committee, approached C-J staffer Brian Bennett at the University of Louisville's Jim Patterson Stadium in the bottom of the fifth inning in the U of L-Oklahoma State game. McArtor told him that blogging from an NCAA championship event "is against NCAA policies. We're revoking the credential and need to ask you to leave the stadium."

http://www.courier-journal.com/apps/pbcs .dll/article?AID=/20070611/SPORTS02/7061 10450/1002/SPORTS

I think bloggers should keep an eye on this case. Is live blogging like print or like broadcasting under the law? Does this have ramifications for political coverage under the law?

by joejoejoe 2007-06-12 11:50AM | 0 recs
And the Beat Goes On

Iran discussion is back up - from the Lieb and R's... Personally, i don't want to be drafted.

by gb1437a 2007-06-12 11:59AM | 0 recs
Re: And the Beat Goes On

You missed Kudlow.  He was just on with some guy named Steve Emerson(who is a terrorism expert for NBC).  They sincerely hope Bush bombs Iran.  What idiots they are!!!

by Calvin Jones and the 13th Apostle 2007-06-12 01:58PM | 0 recs
Re: Open Thread

To get a little diversity on the RecList, what if front-pagers (and weekend front-pagers, too), briefly highlight a few of their favorite non-primary-cheerleading primaries on the front-page? Like in Open Threads, instead of 'Tell us what's on your mind,' the text might say 'Check these diaries for your recommending pleasure,' then list a few.

That way the community still decides what's on the RecList, but we're gently nudged toward quality non-cheerleading diaires.

Because I agree with Matt. I hardly even read the Reclist here anymore.

by BingoL 2007-06-12 12:00PM | 0 recs
Re: Open Thread

I rather enjoy the primary banter - Though the Hillary people drive me crazy.  But, I think it is good for the discussion...Maybe we need 08' diaries seperated from others.

by gb1437a 2007-06-12 12:04PM | 0 recs
Re: Open Thread

Is there a means to confirm or deny that some people here work for campaigns - I comment a lot on Obama, because I support him, and I see a lot of the same from Edwards people - But there are some Obama and Hillary people who appear to work with the campaign.  I would rather not have their comments.

by gb1437a 2007-06-12 01:12PM | 0 recs
Re: Open Thread

i think thats the case with most people on here

by sepulvedaj3 2007-06-12 02:43PM | 0 recs
Re: Open Thread

just like you get bothered by Obama and Hillary supporters, I am sure they get bothered by Edwards supporters.

by sepulvedaj3 2007-06-12 02:44PM | 0 recs
Re: Open Thread

I think most of us are just active - but, it is not beyond campaigns to pay somebody to outreach to the blogs - I think Hillary would certainly do this.

by gb1437a 2007-06-12 03:12PM | 0 recs
Re: Open Thread

i think all the candidates are capable of hiring someone to be a plant on the blogs.

But other than roboliberal and georgep, who have been on the blogs a hell of a lot longer than I have and most likely (not speaking for them dont know) before this campaign season even started, the best reviews for HRC come from Chris Bowers when he is analyzing numbers.

Saying that you think Hillary is the one you would pick as doing so is your own issue. To suggest that only she would do something like that is, to put it lightly, ignorant. (Guess that isnt lightly, oh well)

Suggesting something that is not supported by any facts, leading to conspiracy, is actually quite offensive to someone who supports Hillary, and should be offensive to everyone.

You dont know who everyone supports, nor why they support one candidate over another candidate. Everyone has different experiences, and just because some diaries have less finesse than others, and some people go forth and shout something in response to comments that dont follow your idea of "blog etiquette" doesnt mean that they are working for a campaign or are here to sabotoge some news that is good for your candidate.

Constantly saying something that isnt true, doesnt make it true.

by sepulvedaj3 2007-06-12 03:49PM | 0 recs
Re: Open Thread

I think it is a fact of politics today - as somebody wit a degree focus in campaign management I think I'm pretty well qualified to talk on these matters... I would be surpsised if they didn't.

by gb1437a 2007-06-12 04:12PM | 0 recs
Re: Open Thread

Sorry for posting twice - I've been seeing comments on local blogs from Hillary supporters which are just full of it.  There are some people who seem disconnected from reality, and I just wonder who works for the campaign.  There are Obama folks out there too.

by gb1437a 2007-06-12 05:31PM | 0 recs
Re: Open Thread

I think that we have reached the point in politics that campaign's will have people post on blogs... I have a degree with a focus in campaign management - so, I think I'm somewhat qualified to talk along these lines.  It isn't a far fetched thought at all - considering the traffic mydd and dailykos recieve.

by gb1437a 2007-06-12 05:10PM | 0 recs
Re: Open Thread

When 80% of bloggers claim they've never met a Hillary supporter in real life and can not understand where her strong poll number comes from, you have to wonder who are really disconnected from reality.

Your very amateur comments on various topics seem to suggest you must have gotten your degree from some online school.

by carolinezhang 2007-06-12 06:50PM | 0 recs
Re: Open Thread

Nope two degrees from AU and now Princeton grad program... I think were all a little seperated from reality - but it is ignorant to not aknoweldge that the campaigns have paid people.

I'm not sure what ignorant comments your referring too.  I posted a diary reporting from a conference on the Middle East/ a piece about Edwards and Peta/ and a suggestion on why Obama si like by republicans and you people...

by gb1437a 2007-06-12 07:34PM | 0 recs
Re: Open Thread

There's a lot of great stuff in this article on post-graduate activism.  One area it fails to cover is the role that Democratic campaigns play in this process.  They chew up and spit out idealistic young  field organizers like it's their job.  It's tough to work 80+ hours a week for very little money when you have student loans to pay off.  The work is extremely difficult, too.  You spend a lot of time harassing strangers and being harassed by them, in turn.  There usually isn't much of a payoff afterwards, either, except for another organizing job.  I'm not sure that there's an easy solution to this aside from hiring more organizers, which would cost campaigns a whole boatload of money.

http://www.inthesetimes.com/article/3218 when_college_ends_so_does_activism

by MidAtlantic 2007-06-12 12:16PM | 0 recs
Re: Open Thread

I liked this article alot. I've been there.

I think that my first suggestion would be to strongly encourage groups like the 21st Century Democrats (they have an excellent field organizers program) to recruit organizers from the district.

I remember being at the 21st Century Democrat training in DC a few years back, and meeting the trainees, and thinking one thing.  That it was a huge mistake for them to send kids who's primary qualification is a Harvard degree to do field work in Southern Indiana.

I was there with another guy from the campaign who was on release for CAP duties (he was UAW, all the best field guys in Indiana are union) and talking at lunch and dinner to these recent grads from these East Coast schools, and recent Capitol Hill interns, who couldn't get why things free trade and social security privatization were such important issues to voters in the districts they were going to.

You don't have that problem if you hire in the district.  And you build up the group of people in the district who have campaign experience when pick up oppportunities arise.

by ManfromMiddletown 2007-06-12 12:39PM | 0 recs
Re: Open Thread

The 21st Century Dems program is terrific.  I wish they could recruit in-district for every race.  I went to an east coast school and worked on a campaign in the rural west, and eventually had to stop telling people where I was from because they would get angry.  It's more difficult in some states, especially those that suffer from significant brain drain like the one I was in.  It does build the infrastructure, though, which is really important.  Because of the situation we were in, we essentially built an organization the disappeared after election day.  I wish we could have left things in a better state than we got there.  

The real problem is that organizing (while in some ways very rewarding) is a very difficult, unstimulating low-paying job.  Large chunks of time are spent glued to a phone calling people that don't want to talk to you.

Also, in my experience, all of the best field guys in general are union or ex-union.  :)

by MidAtlantic 2007-06-12 12:48PM | 0 recs
Re: Open Thread

21st Century Dems has a great track record - they are one of the few PACs which do more than just send money.

by gb1437a 2007-06-12 12:49PM | 0 recs
Re: Open Thread

Yeah, their training was great.  They pick great candidates as well.  They also like to target Secretary of State races in swing states, which are incredibly important, but often overlooked.

by MidAtlantic 2007-06-12 12:59PM | 0 recs
Re: Open Thread

Sea otters are my favorite animal. They're just too cute for words.

by bowiegeek 2007-06-12 12:50PM | 0 recs
Re: Open Thread

Can we all agree that nobody wants Hillary to be the Democratic nominee?  I think there's too much Obama/Edwards fighting that goes on around here.  Either ticket - Obama-Edwards, or Edwards-Obama, would be better than Hillary-(anyone).

It seems to me that the Hillary's high polling numbers are coming from

a.)Loyal Hillary supporters (although I've never met one)
b.) Idiots (who don't know who Obama and Edwards are, so they just pick a name they recognize in any poll)

Now, I don't know anything about polling, but I have to imagine that none of the second group is really going to be out supporting Hillary on Primary day (being idiots, they wouldn't know what a primary is).  However, after the last 2 elections, I suppose I should never doubt the stupidity of the American People.  

by mattchuck2 2007-06-12 01:33PM | 0 recs
Re: Open Thread

I think that novel candidates attract strong support from a group of low-information voters, which is also how the Governator got elected.

I'd also add this:
c) women who want to make a point that a women is fit to be considered for the nation's highest job.  Their support may be soft, but it's still nice to see a woman in the lead in the polls.  (this is just a theory, I'm not sure if I believe this)

by aip 2007-06-12 02:13PM | 0 recs
Re: Open Thread

Hi - I'm Jose and I'm a Hillary supporter - nice to meet you.

And you can add a D) People who like Hillary the same way people like Obama and Edwards

by sepulvedaj3 2007-06-12 02:46PM | 0 recs
Re: Open Thread

I'd actually give you time enough to discuss what you said, but I dislike being called an idiot because I support Hillary Clinton in the coming primary. Good-Bye.

by bowiegeek 2007-06-12 10:36PM | 0 recs
Ned Lamont for Tom Allen

Ned Lamont is blogging for Tom Allen over at Daily Kos if anyone wants to check out the thread.

http://www.dailykos.com/story/2007/6/12/ 164534/195

by joejoejoe 2007-06-12 03:34PM | 0 recs

Diaries

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