Wednesday, September 01, 2010

These people could win

The video above, from New Left Media, is a series of interviews with attendees at Glenn Beck’s event this past weekend. I’ve posted two of NLM’s previous videos at similar events: A “Tax Day” protest earlier this year and also a Sarah Palin book signing in November last year. How he manages to refrain from throttling them, I just don’t know, but I realise that just letting them talk is damage enough.

The problem with these people—apart from their gross ignorance and their inability to say anything that’s not a Fox Noise/Beck talking point—is that they vote. Congressional midterm elections historically have a low voter turnout: While some 80% of Americans may be registered to vote, this year, fewer than half of that—if we’re lucky—will actually vote. That means that whoever is elected (from whichever party) in these elections will have the support of 20% of the people, give or take.

This is a particular worry for Democrats. While they have more registered voters than Republicans, Republicans are twice as likely to call themselves “very” enthusiastic about voting (75% vs. 25%), according to a recent Gallup Poll. In a tight race with a low turnout, that would be enough to easily overcome their lower registration and swing the election to Republicans and Teapublicans. As if to underscore that, the same Gallup Poll found that the split between “generic Republicans” and “generic Democrats” is now an unprecedented 10 points (51% back the Republicans, 41% the Democrats); that’s the biggest gap since Gallup began this polling in 1942.

The consequences of this would be catastrophic. Republicans are already promising that if they re-take one or both houses of Congress, they’ll “do nothing” for two years—nothing apart from harassing President Obama by, among other things, “investigating” what have been proven to be phony “scandals”. This is the same party, remember, that wasted millions of dollars and took 140 HOURS of testimony on President Clinton’s supposed (and imaginary) misuse of the White House Christmas Card list.

But fiddling while the American economy burns isn’t the only thing the party would do: They have some seriously radical tea party rightwing candidates running on their ticket. The video below from the Democratic Party shows just a few of the right wing nutjobs and extremists the party now proudly promotes. These radicals, together with other Republican politicians who may not be as radical but who see political opportunity in co-opting radical “movements” like the teabaggers can do some real and terrible damage to the country.

Consider this a warning for my fellow Democrats—and all rational American voters, for that matter. We musn’t allow the extremists to take over America because if they win, we all lose.


epilonious said...

I've always heard stories about morally conservative pundits sending cameras to Southern Decadence and International Mister Leather and the Folsom Street Fair because nothing fires up moral outrage and checkbooks like sloppy gays running around naked or trussed up in shocking outfits and talking about getting laid... and then delivering ultimatums about "this sort of thing happening all over America if we don't thwart them"

I always thought it was sort of a dirty and logically fallacious tactic to single out the most shocking folks and try to cast them as representations of the opposition.

And lo and behold... videos where obviously left-leaning pundits go around tea-party rallies finding the people saying the most shockingly ignorant things alongside statements like if they win, we all lose

...and it's still a dirty and fallacious tactic.

Reed said...

eh, all these comments sound exactly like what I heard coming out of the mouths of about 30% of the population of Tennessee (my state of origin) even before Obama was elected. Now they get to be biting mad about what Bush did but blame a black guy. I really doubt this video is the worst of the bits he got.

Reminds me a lot of why I just don't miss the place (on average). Americanism is a really silly religion.