alien & sedition.
Saturday, June 23, 2007
  After Conservatism -- Piecing Together the New Majority

If you haven't already, check out the excellent trio of articles at the American Prospect on US politics "after the failure of conservatism." Start with Robert Borosage's piece on a subject dear to my heart: why the disaster of the Bush administration has been a failure not of execution, but of conservatism itself. He doesn't go into the tensions surrounding "compassionate conservatism," but he does provide a wonderful reality check for those whose reaction to Bush's misrule is to slip into Reagan nostalgia.

John Judis and Ruy Teixeira, meanwhile, revisit their thesis of an "emerging Democratic majority" -- a majority they argue was only temporarily derailed by 9/11 and the politics of war and terror:
What one sees in the 2006 election is not simply a revolt against the administration's conduct of the war but a return to the political perceptions of the two parties that was inclining the electorate before September 2001 toward a Democratic majority....

In the 2006 election, all the groups that had been part of the emerging Democratic majority in the late 1990s came roaring back into the fold.
Judis and Teixeira suggest that not only have the original building blocks for the new majority -- women, minorities, and professionals -- returned to the Democratic camp, but the coalition has been further enlarged by the addition of young voters ("millennials") and independents. But their analysis comes with a couple of warnings for Democrats. The best way to cement a majority would be to pass "landmark" legislation, a modern equivilant to Social Security -- national health insurance is an obvious possibility -- but, while we may be entering a more progressive era, we're not experiencing the sort of crisis that has, in the past, proven a prerequisite to overcoming the serious institutional obstacles to substantive new legislation (though I wonder if the mid-1960s, which gave us Medicare, Medicaid, immigration reform, and other ambitious progressive legislation, can be counted as a period of crisis -- civil rights movement aside).

Their other warning concerns tensions withing the emerging coalition over social issues and attitudes about the role of government. In particular, they remind us that those independents who helped fuel last year's victory may be socially liberal, but they are resistant to tax increases and skeptical of big government programs. These voters remain susceptible to the appeal of a hypothetical Republican party that might distance itself from religious extremism.

I'd love to break down the numbers on those independents a little further. I suspect that, while they might be "libertarian-leaning," they are far removed from the Milton Friedmanesque orthodoxy of the conservative movement. While I certainly don't disagree with Judis and Teixeira about the challenges involved with holding together a new progressive coalition, there might yet be a more coherent way forward for Democrats than for the conservative coalition. Part of this is to do with another element of their analysis of the independents: "they are particularly wary of 'special interests' in Washington (including the parties themselves) and often favor reforms in lobbying and campaign finance."

Stanley Greenberg's article, while it doesn't break down the electorate like Judis and Teixeira's does, nonetheless provides a useful supplement to their analysis by reporting on a broader trend: how conservative failures have so discredited government that it will be difficult for Democrats to use government effectively. The key finding seems to reflect a curious schizophrenia: by overwhelming numbers, Americans want government "to be more involved on a range of issues including national security, health care, energy, and the environment." Americans prefer the values of solidarity and community to individualism and self-reliance, they believe -- overwhelmingly -- that government should help those who can't help themselves, and they even favor a Canadian-style national health care system.

Yet, by the same overwhelming numbers, Americans think government is wasteful, inefficient, and indifferent to the needs of ordinary people. They think it wastes their tax dollars and they disapprove of its performance in nearly every area (they're evenly split over its performance on national security).

A conservative analysis of these results -- I've seen this before -- would be that Americans might like the idea of government "goodies," but they know on a more visceral level that, as Reagan said, "government is the problem, not the solution." Greenberg's more plausible take is that Americans believe that government has an important role to play in solving the problems of modern life, but they're disgusted by the corruption and incompetence they've seen in Washington over the past six years.

This is why, for Greenberg, it's critical that Democrats be seen as the party of government reform and accountability -- "not just in the spending of tax dollars ... but also in politicians' behavior." And while Greenberg's polling helped guide Bill Clinton's decision-making -- a history that might tempt progressives to mutter darkly about "triangulation" -- the fact is he lays out a convincing case for the fact that advocating for reform doesn't mean accepting the conservative "government=bad" frame, but simply upholding progressive values. Greenberg's list of recommendations includes:
  • Advance a strong fiscal-accountability agenda to cut waste and make government spending more efficient and results-oriented. This includes auditing every federal department and agency to make sure funding is going to meaningful projects and to people, not the bureaucracy; eliminating no-bid contracts; creating an inspector general for Iraq to oversee US spending there; and reducing energy costs by requiring all federal buildings to meet modern energy-efficiency regulations.

  • Go much further on anti-corruption, ethics, and lobbying reform. Institute new whistle-blower legislation to protect government employees from retribution if they report waste or corruption.
Again, six and a half years of Bush administration cronyism and corruption have done much to remind people just how antithetical government reform really is to the conservative project. Those independents who mistrust government are a part of the progressive coalition whether they realize it or not, and Democrats can take advantage of this -- and expand their freedom of movement when it comes to the use of government -- by embracing a reform agenda (and here's where the recent Democratic failure to follow through on ethics reform really galls) and by making the case that it's precisely the conservative anti-government mentality that leads to corruption and wastefulness, since it fosters cynicism and contempt among those entrusted with the federal purse.

I'd like to see that last point made a lot more often -- returning to the notion of framing, it seems to me that linking the anti-government mentality to corrupt and incompetent governance offers progressives a way to build on their ties to those socially-liberal but fiscally-"conservative" voters who will be so important to that emerging Democratic majority.
 
Comments:
I don't mean to sound like a broken record, but (properly framed), I think a real system of campaign financing akin to Durbin & Tierney's "clean elections" proposal would be a big substantive and symbolic step toward restoring public confidence. I'm not entirely sure why the likes of Obama & Edwards have been so hesitant in this regard.
 
I'm a huge fan of the clean elections idea. I'm not qualified to comment on why leading Democrats are so resistant to real campaign finance reform (I'm sure they have their reasons, I just couldn't quite parse out what those reasons are). But one would hope that a glance at the big picture would show them how important it is.
 
tramadol online buy tramadol online pharmacy - ultram tramadol 100mg
 
buy tramadol buy tramadol in florida - buy tramadol online next day delivery
 
tramadol online tramadol 50 mg whyte pill - tramadol no prescription next day
 
buy tramadol tramadol hcl 40 mg - tramadol hcl side effects humans
 
discount ativan ativan withdrawal muscle pain - ativan xanax
 
legal buy tramadol online buy tramadol online forum - buy tramadol online bluelight
 
buy tramadol online reviews tramadol online pharmacy no prescription needed - tramadol online inrikes
 
buy tramadol for dogs tramadol hcl classification - tramadol hcl vs oxycodone
 
buy tramadol tramadol for dogs usa - tramadol hcl 50 mg tablet tev information
 
buy ambien online ambien side effects high blood pressure - ambien online europe
 
tramadol online tramadol 50 mg canine - tramadol hcl manufacturers in hyderabad
 
cheap clonazepam klonopin side effects in men - klonopin benzo
 
buy tramadol buy tramadol pet - tramadol hcl ingredients
 
tramadol online tramadol for dogs benadryl - buy tramadol online paypal
 
buy tramadol tablets buy brand name ultram - tramadol online visa
 
buy ambien online can take 2 ambien 10mg - generic ambien teva 74
 
purchase tramadol tramadol 600 mg daily - tramadol 325
 
generic ambien ambien 6979 - ambien side effects dry eyes
 
cheap ativan online is 1mg of lorazepam a lot - ativan dosage tablets
 
tramadol overnight shipping buy tramadol online in uk - buy tramadol 100mg
 
buy tramadol rx purchase tramadol no prescription - tramadol overdose how many
 
buy tramadol online with mastercard can you buy tramadol over the counter in the us - usual dosage tramadol
 
klonopin for anxiety generic xanax clonazepam - best place buy klonopin
 
ambien online no prescription cheap generic ambien no prescription - ambien sleep meds
 
soma muscle soma muscle relaxer drug interactions - where to buy soma hair products
 
buy tramadol online buy tramadol 200mg - buy tramadol in uk
 
generic ambien drug company makes ambien - purchase ambien online no prescription
 
soma online buy soma online cod - soma back pain medication
 
generic ambien online ambien side effects long term use - ambien overdose how many pills
 
cheap tramadol no prescription cheap tramadol online usa - what is tramadol ultram used for
 
buy tramadol order tramadol online international - legit online pharmacy tramadol
 
generic clonazepam klonopin 2mg - klonopin side effects with pregnancy
 
tramadol online pharmacy tramadol online order - buy ultram online no prescription
 
buy tramadol free shipping buy tramadol online overnight delivery - buy tramadol online us pharmacy
 
ativan cost ativan for sleep - ativan kick in
 
carisoprodol no prescription soma muscle relaxer narcotic - order soma online cheap
 
buy ambien no prescription zolpidem sleeping pills side effects - herbal ambien sleep well
 
buy tramadol online without a prescription tramadol withdrawal while pregnant - tramadol for dogs pain
 
buy tramadol tramadol hcl 50mg tablet amnea - tramadol gi bleed
 
buy tramadol for dogs buy tramadol for dogs - buy tramadol united states
 
buy tramadol online tramadol 50mg webmd - buy tramadol 180
 
order ambien online no prescription buy generic ambien online no prescription - ambien cr kick
 
buy soma online somatropin generic name - cheap watson soma
 
buy tramadol online no prescription buy tramadol online prescription - tramadol addiction recovery
 
tramadol online buy tramadol in the uk - buy tramadol from uk
 
buy tramadol overnight tramadol 50 mg how long does it last - tramadol 50mg tablets
 
buy ambien online ambien withdrawal vision - ambien drug holiday
 
buy tramadol online buy tramadol hydrochloride - where to purchase tramadol
 
generic ambien ambien cr 12.5 overdose - generic ambien milligrams
 
cheap viagra viagra for women dosage - buy herbal viagra online
 
buy ambien online no prescription ambien side effects tingling - ambien and drinking alcohol
 
viagra online purchase viagra online canada - viagra online
 
buy viagra online in usa generic viagra no prescription needed - generic viagra 200mg
 
buy generic ambien ambien side effects on the elderly - generic version of ambien cr
 
viagra for sale buy viagra from boots - cheap online viagra no prescription
 
ambien no rx ambien side effects men - ambien side effects liver damage
 
buy viagra professional can i really buy viagra online - viagra buy sri lanka
 
viagra online purchase viagra online canada - viagra online
 
generic ambien how to buy ambien online - ambien on drug screen
 
cheap ambien no prescription ambien overdose fatal amount - ambien videos
 
buy tramadol online no prescription cheap buy tramadol online us pharmacy - buy tramadol spain
 
viagra drug does viagra work in young men - buy viagra online get prescription
 
buy soma online no prescription soma reviews - generic soma pill
 
tramadol online tramadol for opiate withdrawal - buy tramadol online pharmacy
 
soma online soma pills good - soma 92110
 
ambien sale ambien side effects liver damage - cheap ambien no prescription
 
order viagra with mastercard buy 100mg viagra online - generic viagra gold
 
clonazepam online street value 2mg klonopin - klonopin dosage bluelight
 
viagra pills viagraonline.md - recreational viagra for women
 
purchase viagra no prescription order viagra from india - cheap viagra free shipping
 
ambien ambien pink pill - ambien cr much does cost
 
buy viagra where to buy generic viagra online forum - where to buy generic viagra blog
 
order viagra with mastercard cheap viagra prices - should buy generic viagra
 
cialis pills cialis 20 - where to buy cialis 200mg
 
cialis online how to buy cialis online safely - cialis online vancouver
 
order carisoprodol best place buy soma online - soma high
 
buy viagra viagra online us - generic viagra in mexico
 
where to buy viagra online forum viagra dosage 50 mg - generic viagra how it works
 
buy tramadol india buy tramadol online from usa - generic for tramadol hcl
 
soma without prescription soma 350 mg side effects - what are soma pills used for
 
buy tramadol saturday delivery buy tramadol online forum - buy tramadol online reviews
 
viagra online experience research cheap viagra - can i buy viagra online yahoo answers
 
buy brand viagra online buy viagra cheap canada - generic viagra from india review
 
generic viagra viagra dosage options - can you buy viagra in dubai
 
soma online soma (generic medication) - mission soma 92101
 
buy tramadol without rx tramadol hcl 50 mg tablets - where to buy tramadol forum
 
buy carisoprodol medication like soma - generic soma 250 mg
 
buy viagra online no rx viagra dosage duration - pfizer viagra online pharmacy
 
buy viagra online reviews yahoo answer viagra online - how can you buy real viagra online in usa
 
tramadol online tramadol 50 mg how many get high - tramadol no prescription
 
buy tramadol online tramadol 50 mg kapseln - can you buy tramadol over counter usa
 
tramadol online buy tramadol online no prescription usa - tramadol for dogs without rx
 
order tramadol online cod tramadol 50mg can you get high - where can i buy tramadol in the usa
 
can you buy viagra at walmart buy cheap viagra online next day delivery - buy viagra online cheap
 
buy viagra online online viagra herbal - buy viagra australia
 
tramadol online can you buy tramadol over the counter - tramadol for dogs constipation
 
generic finasteride propecia patient results - propecia no results
 
buy viagra las vegas cheap viagra wholesale - buy viagra no prescription online
 
cialis online is it legal to buy cialis online in canada - buy cialis with paypal
 
buy propecia buy propecia men - cheapest place buy propecia
 
buy tramadol online tramadol online bluebook - tramadol hcl bp
 
buy tramadol online tramadol high 100mg - tramadol hcl bluelight
 
buy cialis with paypal generic cialis 10mg online - cialis kidney stones
 
finasteride no prescription buy generic propecia - propecia when see results
 
tramadol online tramadol addiction methadone - can buy tramadol online legally
 
buy propecia online how much does propecia cost uk - propecia varicocele
 
buy viagra with paypal buy viagra kenya - can you buy viagra online canada
 
buy tramadol without prescriptions que es tramadol hcl - tramadol 50 mg norge
 
buy propecia propecia online ohne rezept - propecia side effects sperm
 
buy tramadol online tramadol kick in time - order tramadol visa
 
generic strattera strattera false positive drug test - strattera dosage chart adults
 
purchase tramadol tramadol death by overdose - safe place buy tramadol online
 
tramadol online pharmacy buy tramadol online no prescription uk - tramadol hcl 50mg high
 
tramadol 50 mg tramadol for dogs how long does it take to work - tramadol 200mg dosage
 
buy tramadol online generic drug name tramadol - buy tramadol generic ultram
 
buy propecia online generic propecia 2012 - generic propecia good
 
tramadol 50 mg tramadol dosage dogs - cheap tramadol overnight shipping
 
buy tramadol online tramadol for dogs max dose - buy tramadol overnight shipping
 
buy generic tramadol tramadol que contiene - overdose on tramadol
 
buy propecia online propecia from canada - buy propecia online forum
 
generic strattera strattera vs generic - strattera price
 
tramadol 50 mg tramadol high effects - tramadol 37.5 325 dosage
 
order tramadol online overnight legal buy tramadol online us - buy tramadol online with a cod
 
tramadol 50 mg how to buy tramadol legally - tramadol hcl 50 mg vs percocet
 
generic strattera strattera drug generic - strattera headaches
 
buy tramadol online tramadol online american express - tramadol mg get high
 
buy tramadol online buy tramadol 24x7 - tramadol for dogs best price
 
buy tramadol online mastercard overnight tramadol overdose dose - buy tramadol from usa
 
buy tramadol online tramadol hcl 50mg for dogs - tramadol dosage abuse
 
tramadol online tramadol withdrawal long symptoms - what is stronger tramadol or ultram
 
tramadol 50 mg tramadol 7.5 - tramadol 37.5/325 high
 
buy tramadol buy tramadol cash delivery - tramadol 50 mg for back pain
 
buy tramadol buy tramadol uk online - tramadol hcl to get high
 
buy propecia online propecia buy online india - buy brand name propecia
 
buy tramadol cod next day delivery buy tramadol online with cod - need purchase tramadol
 
buy strattera online strattera 80 mg price - strattera pill
 
buy tramadol ultram tramadol hydrochloride - buy tramadol online in usa
 
tramadol online tramadol hexal 100 mg - tramadol withdrawal restless legs
 
tramadol 50mg where to buy tramadol forum - tramadol addiction 2010
 
finasteride 5mg propecia cost - buy propecia france
 
buy tramadol no rx tramadol dosage in the elderly - tramadol dosage mg
 
tramadol 50 mg tramadol constipation - tramadol hcl 50mg side effects in dogs
 
buy tramadol cheap tramadol - tramadol first time dosage
 
buy strattera strattera side effects in young adults - strattera qd
 
buy tramadol cod online buy tramadol online missouri - cope tramadol addiction
 
tramadol overnight shipping tramadol overdose can kill - buy tramadol online in usa
 
viagra online without prescription safest place order viagra online - is generic viagra effective and safe
 
purchase propecia buy propecia online usa - propecia reviews for women
 
viagra online without prescription buy viagra bangalore - generic viagra soft 100 mg
 
tramadol 50mg order tramadol australia - where to buy tramadol online
 
viagra no prescription cheap viagra online pharmacy - buy viagra online without
 
tramadol 50mg tramadol mixed with alcohol - buy tramadol cod free
 
generic viagra buy viagra doha - buy viagra online mastercard
 
order tramadol tramadol hydrochloride addiction - tramadol for dogs reviews
 
buy tramadol tramadol online mastercard - tramadol hcl xr 100mg
 
viagra online without prescription buy pfizer viagra online us - viagra online to australia
 
cheap viagra buy 4 viagra - buy generic viagra online paypal
 
viagra online without prescription buy generic viagra online - viagra dosage range
 
cheap viagra order viagra walgreens - viagra online us
 
buy viagra online viagra online 4rx - viagra jelly
 
buy tadalafil generic cialis no prescription needed - can you buy cialis over the counter in australia
 
cheap viagra order viagra walgreens - viagra online us
 
generic cialis cialis daily dosage side effects - cialis мнения
 
buy cialis buy cialis with no prescription - buy cialis online in usa
 
generic viagra purchase viagra online us - buy cheap viagra online
 
cheap viagra viagra online lloyds - buy viagra online us forum
 
how to buy cialis cialis циалис tadalafil - cialis online 2.5mg
 
buy tramadol tramadol online tennessee - legal buy tramadol mexico
 
sildenafil citrate buy viagra jelly online - generic viagra names jokes
 
discount cialis buy cialis online in australia - buy cialis online uk
 
cheap viagra order viagra with no prescription online - viagra online fast shipping
 
generic viagra viagra online be - viagra for women benefits
 
generic viagra viagra free trial - buy generic viagra new zealand
 
viagra online without prescription viagra dosage for pulmonary hypertension - order viagra online in australia
 
viagra online without prescription viagra from us online - viagra long does take work
 
viagra online without prescription order viagra online reviews - buy viagra eu
 
order cialis online cialis online boots - generic cialis as good
 
buy cheap cialis cialis online from canadian pharmacy - cialis price drop
 
cialis sale safe place buy cialis online - cialis 800
 
discount cialis cialis daily - buying cialis online canada
 
buy cialis cialis online venezuela - generic cialis prices
 
online soma soma pills drug test - soma san diego bring me horizon
 
generic cialis cialis daily study - cialis generic no prescription
 
buy soma online soma function - soma architects
 
cheap cialis cialis daily not working - cialis 20 mg
 
cialis professional cialis online pharmacy usa - cialis directions
 
buy cheap viagra buy viagra online with paypal - who has bought viagra online
 
viagra online buy genuine viagra online - generic viagra us safe
 
viagra online generic viagra shipped us - viagra for women cbs
 
buy soma online buy soma online cheap - order soma drug
 
buy cialis cialis online test - generic cialis 2.5 mg online
 
cheap soma soma backless bras - buy soma watson pain relief
 
viagra online viagra online from us - does viagra work on females
 
soma drug can i buy soma online - buy soma online $0.45 each
 
viagra online buy viagra us safely - viagra online bestellen ohne rezept
 
buy soma online soma bras calgary - soma discount coupon codes
 
buy soma online soma 350 mg review - soma ingredients
 
soma buy best buy soma san francisco - much soma pills worth
 
Post a Comment



<< Home

"An obscure but fantastic blog." - Markus Kolic

About

Critical analysis of the American conservative movement from a progressive perspective. Also some stuff about the Mets.


Email Me


Favorite Posts

I Was a Mole at the Conservative Summit, Part One
Part Two
Part Three

Wars of Perception, Part One
Wars of Perception, Part Two

Conservative Futures
Reading Conservative History


Blogroll

I also post at:

The Daily Gotham
The Albany Project
The Right's Field

Various favorites:

Alicublog
Ben Weyl
Chase Martyn
Cliff Schecter
Crooked Timber
D-Day (David Dayen)
Daily Kos
Digby
Ezra Klein
Feministing
Five Before Chaos
Future Majority
Glenn Greenwald
The Group News Blog
Jon Swift
Lawyers, Guns, and Money
Mahablog
Majikthise
Matt Ortega
Matthew Yglesias
MaxSpeak
My Thinking Corner
MyDD
New Democratic Majority
The November Blog
The Osterley Times
A Pedestrian View
The Poor Man Institute
Progressive Historians
PSoTD
Skippy the Bush Kangaroo
Slacktivist
Talking Points Memo
Think Progress
The Third Estate
Undercover Blue
Vernon Lee
wAitiNG foR doROthY

Watching the right:

Orcinus (Dave Neiwert)
Rick Perlstein
Right Wing Watch
Sadly, No!

The conservative wonkosphere:

American.com (AEI)
The American Scene
Andrew Sullivan
Cato @ Liberty
Contentions (Commentary Magazine)
Crunchy Con (Rod Dreher)
Daniel Larison
Eye on '08 (Soren Dayton)
Jim Henley
Josh Trevino
Mainstream Libertarian
National Review Online
Patrick Ruffini
Ross Douthat
Ryan Sager
The Weekly Standard

New Yorkers:

Amazin' Avenue
Chris Owens
Esthetic/Aesthetic
Isebrand
Unfutz
Z. Madison


Archives

December 2006

January 2007

February 2007

March 2007

April 2007

May 2007

June 2007

July 2007

August 2007

September 2007

October 2007

November 2008


Powered by Blogger