I suppose you have great powers of persuasion that cause others to flock to your causes?
If you don't know anything about movement building, try not to advertise your ignorance, my friend. Skepticism is good. A myopic, hidebound adherence to skepticism. . . is not courageous, and suggestive of other potential problems.
First off, I agree with Matt, there are many people who get it, who want to get it and who are working very hard with very little recognition.
Second, progressives come into this with a history. Politesse was de rigeur for a long time. It got progressives squat. We learned to be tough and to make harsh attacks because we learned that without doing so, we are patted on the head and ignored.
We are not inherently nasty people in the "blog" caucus: just fed up and eager for change. I write some pretty scalding attacks, but my personality by nature is oriented toward collaboration, toward buulding and sustaining relationships. I'd like nothing better than to se eus all "just get along." Tough, harsh criticism, even mockery of the worst offenders (Lieberman) is a strategic choice.
Third, the blogosphere approximates a rough and tumble meritocracy of ideas and writing, and to a lessar extent, organizing. On the other hand, not all of our politicians come from that kind of background, and because living in DC as a pol brings with it status and deference, the culture shock that comes form dealing with us can be substantial. It's not often many pols encounter people not already awed by their presence or attention. When they don't get that from us, they may feel the sting.
Rather often, people get into politics in part because they want to be loved, to win people over. It's the ultimate sales high. I don't mean that in a perjorative way at all. I think it's great, and very useful. But we bloggers are very conditional, even perhaps fickle, with our love, because we pay attention and we let you know how we feel. Kind of like New York baseball fans, we may boo you the week after we shout for curtain calls.
As Matt points out, that's life. That's democracy.
The values associated with the points do matter, of course. I wonder if they will be leaked. I'm all for mentoring, but then again, it all depends on the mentors, doesn't it? Sten Hoyer? Screw that.
Of course, I've been told by someone with knowledge of the thinking inside the DCCC that the DCCC denies it does party message control. That, they say, is the DNC's job. But then again, enforcing caucus unity around an agenda, whatever that agenda may be, is message control.
What matters. of course, is the agenda, and also the way it is institutionally supported.
Many of us remain (ahem!) skeptical of the degree of anti-progressive, corporate-friendly politics in the party, though it is possible to imagine an inder-ist "progressive" party agenda. This is what you descibe, Matt, of Pelosi's style.
But is it possible to sustain a progressive politics built on an insiderist foundation? The Clinton years, and their aftermath (cough McCurry! cough!), suggest the answer is no.
Interesting times ahead. There was no open source progressive political movement during the Clinton years. We in the roots have not only a commitment to progressive values, but to progressive organizational systems.
We really need to do some targeting for primaries in '08.
This whole Trojan horse campaign has come about not because people like Trevino are concerned about online privacy. It came about because they are concerned about their careers, because we are telling the truth about them.
Trevino saw Domenech get "outed" as Augustine - which was actually done by a commenter at RedState, then picked up by other blogs - and noticed that corporate media stopped the career path spigot.
Right wing bloggers rely on corporate money, jobs and legitimacy for their career paths, while left wing bloggers build their own institutions and don't make much money, if any. But when we show these people up for their racism, lies and other vile writings, they lose career access. Trevino cares about career protection, and is using this issue to try to protect a generation of Ben Domenech type folks on the right.
Name me one major left wing blog that has violated the online privacy principles we all hold as decent people. There may be a couple out there somewhere, but I sure don't know about it, and I read a lot of blogs. Whoever retaliated against Malkin was wrong and should not have done it, but to my knowledge, was not a major player. On the other hand, Malkin refused to take down those college kids' numbers even after she was informed they were getting death threats, and Malkin is a major (funded) player. Yet the majority of the cosigners to that page violate their own stated principles by driving traffic to her via links.
The pledge was devised by Trevino the way Republicans devise legislation for Lieberman to sign. A few well meaning left wing bloggers cosigned and now they have given "bipartisan" cover for right wingers to invent imaginary offenses by members of the left, when it's their own house that needs cleaning. They are already violating their "bipartisan" principles by attacking those of us who quietly chose not to participate, but that was always the intention. They even updated the front page post attacking left wing bloggers without posting the fat they had made an update. How about them ethics?
Chris is right not to cosign, but he has been rather gentle in describing why he won't do it. We have more to do building energy to promotes a progressive America, and energy is wasted over silly litigious pie fights with people like Trevino who want to sew negativity and hate.
I've gone around and around with the Webb people. They've decided to ignore me.
I have definitely not sipped of the Webb Kool Aid.
He spews nice platitudes, yet commits to nothing. Where's the courage in that?
Web does not talk like Lamont or Schweitzer. VA is not CT or MT, but bullshit is still bullshit.
If you Webbers don't like the way that sounds, then prove me wrong. Let's see Webb back up his lofty rhetoric about oversight with commitments to specific positions. This statement about the Lizza article is beneath contempt.
Webb's bandwagon by declaring "we are inevitable!!!" campaign reminds me of someone I've seen before, but I can't quite recall where. . .