Game Plan, Rove-Style

I've been clear that I think this Karl Rove stuff is a distraction, at least if it's not handled properly.  But it's also an opening big enough to drive a Mack truck through if the Democrats have any sense at all.  And I'm not talking about the "Karl must resign" stuff.  Although I understand the impulse behind it, I won't sign that petition.  First of all, I'm on record as  thinking it's useless.   It's not even particularly good political theater, unlike John Conyers' Downing Street Letter.

Second, and more important, it's (yet again) putting the Democrats' fate in the hands of George W. Bush.  If he doesn't fire Karl Rove, the Dems look like pansies.  And guess what?  Bush won't, and the Dems will.  When has this president ever apologized for anything, fired anyone or otherwise shown any hint of reconsidering even patently stupid decisions? Stop asking Bush for things you know he won't give you.

Third, and most importantly, I don't want Karl Rove to resign, any more than I want Dick Cheney to resign, or Donald Rumsfeld or Tom Delay to be out of the public eye.  I want to tie Karl Rove and the rest of those criminals  to George Bush so tightly that in years to come, one will be able ask why George Bush crossed the road, and the answer will be "Because he was attached to Karl Rove." 

And then, you use Karl Rove and the rest of those criminals as a club with which to beat on George W. Bush in those areas where everyone thinks he's strongest:  the war on "terrah", his bogus"likability" and his "leadership".  So here's the game plan:

1)  Make all of these vicious unappealing hacks into the public face of George Bush.  A boss is responsible for everything his subordinates do.  Everyone knows that.  So use it.  Don't worry about offending the Republican base.  You won't peel any of them off anyway, so stop trying to appease them.  Don't ask for anything.  Just make the case.  And don't act as if any bad acts are closed.  Every single disrespectful thing that any of these folks have ever done is open for criticism as something that George Bush agrees with (he is their boss).

Sample talking points:

  • Karl Rove speaks for George Bush when he attacks as a traitor everyone who's not a Republican Extremist like Karl and George.  George Bush really believes that he is the president of less than 40% of the country.  He proved it in his closed loyalty-oath campaign rallies.  He proved it in his closed loyalty-oath Social Security events, where dissenters were arrested.
  • Dick Cheney really spoke for George Bush when he told Pat Leahy to "Go fuck himself".  Cheney works for Bush, so you really have to assume that he's speaking for George Bush at all times.
  • Donald Rumsfeld showed how little George Bush cared for the troops when he signed condolence letters for dead soldiers with a machine.  If George Bush understood how disrespectful that was, Bush would have fired Rumsfeld just for that. 

These people work for George Bush.  They're saying what George Bush believes.  Don't ask for a repudiation -- that's for wimps.  Just paint George Bush with the brush of his own lieutenants.

2)  Make the truthful case that Rove and Mehlman and Cheney and DeLay and all the other Republican mouthpieces are out here attacking Americans on behalf of George Bush because they know that George Bush is an unpopular and incompetent president.  (Let's say that last bit again:   George Bush is an unpopular president.  Repeat ad nauseum.) 

Sample talking points:

  • Rove is attacking regular  Americans on George Bush's behalf because he wants us to forget that George Bush  hasn't had any success attacking our real enemies.  Where is Osama bin Laden?  Even if Bush finds him now, Bush has  failed.  George Bush gave Bin Laden 5 years of freedom, while three thousand Americans were being buried and mourned.
  • Rove is attacking regular Americans on George Bush's behalf because they know better than to agree to George Bush's irresponsible, bad plan to destroy Social Security.
  • Rove is attacking regular Americans on George Bush's behalf because they know that the invasion and occupation of Iraq was George Bush's bad idea, which is costing ordinary Americans their lives.

3)  Call George Bush out.  Not by demanding that he repudiate anything that his mouthpieces say, but by calling him a coward for not saying it himself.  If his lieutenants are saying these things, we'll assume he agrees unless he says otherwise.  And we're not asking him to say otherwise.

Sample talking points:

  • Rove and Mehlman and Cheney and Delay and all the other Republican mouthpieces are out here attacking Americans on behalf of George Bush because George Bush is a coward.  He's afraid to come out say what he really thinks of regular Americans, so he has these mouthpieces say it for him. 
  • Rove and Mehlman and Cheney and Delay and all the other Republican mouthpieces are out here attacking Americans on behalf of George Bush because he's afraid to face the American people unless they're a hand-picked crowd, just like in all of his loyalty-oath campaign rallies and the "town meetings" on his Social Security destruction plan.
  • Rove and Mehlman and Cheney and Delay and all the other Republican mouthpieces are out here attacking Americans on behalf of George Bush because he's afraid to face the American people directly, because people know he's failed at catching the man who murdered three thousand people five years ago, and because the American people know that George Bush's invasion and occupation of Iraq wasn't worth it.

4)  Make the truthful case that the Bush mouthpiece attacks on regular Americans are motivated by a desire to distract the American people from the truth that George Bush started the war with Iraq, that he lied to them when he said war was a last resort.  Keep pointing out that the Republican attacks on regular Americans have increased in intensity in the last week or two, as the Downing Street Minutes and other British memoranda have surfaced in the public consciousness and the [corporate] media.

Look, I'm an amateur.  I'm sure professional wordsmiths can tune up a lot of those talking points to be snappier and sound-biteyer.  And I'm sure that not every one of those attacks is the best one.  But those are the kinds of attacks that need to happen.  They don't rely on the Bush people to do anything.  Also the options for response by team Bush are a bit limited.  Either Bush comes out on his own to say or spin or repudiate those things, or they have to deny that the mouthpieces speak for Bush.  Or even more likely, you get more attacks from the mouthpieces, which you can spin right back at Bush with the same talking points.

I won't hold my breath, though.

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1 Comment

Just what the Dr. ordered
Obviously, I'm an amatuer as well, just an armchair quarterback, really.  But I like this.

I'd love to see more Democrats stick up for what I believe in (and hope they do too).  I'd love to see them use successful GOP tactics against the GOP, such as you said above.

And I definately think that Dems calling for the resignation of Karl rove was a little pathetic.  Why not just slam the slimy little shit??

Look, the Republican leasdership doesn;t even really speak for the majority of Republican voters; they just kinda go along because they think supporting the crazy-ass monkey with a razor the 'right thing to do.'

So give up on those dumbasses.  If you voted for GW Bush because of some crappy 'values' BS, and your values are basically anti-gay or anti-abortion rights, guess what?  You probably aren't voting Democrat, even if the particular Democrat is pro-life.  I mean... if it's a single issue for you, then you are strickly a K Rove Republican (and an idiot).

As for the others who voted for Bush, hey... he's probably pissed them off too.  Budget?  Yep.  Incomepetence in WOT?  Yep.  Complete betrayal of troops?  Uh-huh.

The right-wing noise machine is truly loud and obnoxious, surely.  But the M$M still has to play what you say if you're a national figure.  Just say what you will with an eye toward the fact that it will be repeated.

Go on the attack, and give no quarter.  My God!  Rumsfeld is a HUGE dickhole.  Look at him on MTP Sunday... he couldn't even hang with the relatively softball question of TR, and Kennedy made him his bitch.  Dick Cheney?  The man has all the appeal of a turd sandwich.  And Karl Rove is just ASKING for an atomic wedgie.

These guys spend all day, every day saying and doing completely outrageous shit, and the Democrats seem to spend 95% of the time playing with hemselves and 4% complaining that the Republicans aren't being nice.

Dr. Dean and Dennis Kucinich can be seen as examples of how to act.  Barbara Boxer is a model of what to do.  Ed Kennedy just showed us how to rip the Sec. o' Def. a new hole.  Harry Reid was tough-as-nails in the filibuster fight.  Hill-bo got up and called 'em all liars.

These people have shown some backbone.  If they could just get a little club together, and do it all the time.  It would help a lot, because the GOP just stands up and calls Dems pussies, then wait for them to act the part.

I want to see womeone take thse criminals and liars and theives to task for what they have done.  Let FOX say what they will.  Hell, Dean could stand up and read the Republican talking points and Bill O'Reilly would still try to say he's a pinko commie turncoat.

I want to see Congressional Dems put some teeth in their attacks, and start to have faith in their base.  Speak for us, and we have your back.

Just ask Howard Dean.

by teknofyl 2005-06-27 12:10PM | 0 recs


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