Wednesday, June 15, 2005

Lay Off Howard Dean!

What do you get when you cross a firey, outspoken DNC chair with a bunch of arrogant, angry, hypocritical Republicans? A lot of Howard Dean bashing, that's what. The GOP can dish, but it surely cannot take it in return. They've come to expect us on the Left to be like frightened sheep. A bunch of wimps who'd rather make nice-nice with the Right than stand up and fight the good fight. So it comes as no surprise that Republicans--those in politics, the media, academia--are "shocked" and "outraged" by Dean and his rhetoric. He's an "extremist" they say; someone who's "out of touch with mainstream America." Well, if these are the standards for which we judge our politicians, then that disqualifies about 90% of the Republican leadership today. Bush, Cheney, Delay, Frist, Santorum, Coburn, Lott, Rove...these guys wrote the book on extremism. Howard Dean pales in comparison. But they don't like it one bit when someone like Dean takes aim squarely at the GOP's faults, lies, deception, manipulation, screw-ups and cover-ups. No siree. The Right thinks it has a lock on all that. But are they really trying to convince us that former national and local party leaders such as Lee Atwater, Ralph Reed and Ed Gillespie never ratcheted up the partisan rhetoric and tossed the occasional inflammatory comment? Never sucker-punched the Left? And what about current RNC chair Ken Mehlman? He's surely not in the midst of a lovefest with the Left either. I guess there really is no end to the Republicans' hypocrisy. True, Howard Dean plays rough. And that's exactly what this party needs right now. He stands for something, and he's not spineless like so many in our party. Let the Republicans bash him. It only shows that they're afraid of him. Afraid of his ability to fire up voters and raise funds. Maybe if there were a few dozen more like him in Washington we'd win more elections. Andy

1 comment:

James said...

One of the things that is missing is a united front from the left. It's been the same in the UK for years. Blair briefly built a progressive-left consensus but then shifted to the right pretty quickly. Now the left spends too much of its time arguing about how to dislodge the centre-right consensus that it was complicit in establishing. A figure like Dean is not only hard for the right to understand, but also difficult for the left to engage with constructively in a political culture used to in-fighting!