Monday, January 25, 2010

Plouffe the Magic Dragon

Here comes more fluff to fill the void of leadership. David Plouffe has been called back to the White House to engineer the midterm elections, put them in "lockstep" (Obama's term) with the national party.

The miracle man for the 2006 midterm was none other than Rahm Emanuel, though it appears he just moved DNC money around to do it. Plouffe has to be more creative. He wrote the Obama script and after losses in November, followed by the Martha mess in Boston, he's called upon to do it again.

Campaigning is far different than actually doing it, as Obama has quickly learned. In a campaign you start with a theme, a slogan. Hope, change, world peace, puppies, daisies...

Then you put out great platitudes like, "Come the revolution everyone will have free health care at the Mayo Clinic." Everyone cheers, especially the people in the cities who pay no taxes because they have never worked.

Only fools publish lengthy white papers detailing how the program works. The more detail you give in a campaign, the more ammunition you are giving your opponent to attack you.

Stay positive, stay vague, raise your arms a lot.

To illustrate, one of Obama's big mistakes as a candidate was to talk about taxing coal mines until they can't afford to do business any more. The better approach would be to talk about clean air and clean water for future generations and leave out the nasty details.

Then comes the inauguration. At that point the details must emerge. How shall we pay for it? Who will bear the enforcement burden? When will it take effect? What must be do without in order to have this great society?

About all you can do is fend off the attackers. After all, they are right to ask such questions. Call them tea baggers. Call them "The party of no." But the details must come out.

Once you are done with the name calling, the problems in the details still exist.

Obama has a particularly sticky problem; censorship.
Candidate Obama would exclude reporters from the entourage simply because he didn't like what they wrote.

Obama snubs Fox News because they oppose his policies.

Obama steers the NEA to give grant money to liberal artists who create pro-Obama projects.

Obama seeks to control the Internet, insisting that every right-leaning blog be countered with one from the left.

Obama sets up a snitching process to alert the White House when anyone says something bad about Obamacare.

Obama looks for ways to create campaign funding rules that benefit democrats.

Obama holds secret meetings.

Obama withholds terrorist reports.

In the process he has only appeared petty and foolish...and a bit devious.

Plouffe must take advantage of the huge power vacuum in the United States (both parties) and fill it with meaningful policy...or at least more palatable Pablum.

And he must do it without an unbridled ACORN/SEIU. And increasingly the media is asking tough questions. And he must face a new foe called the tea party movement.

Hope and change won't do it this time. Nor will underdoggery.