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Rants and Raves


Yesterday’s post on George Lakoff elicted a pretty strong response from San Francisco political consultant and all around great guy (okay, yeah and he’s an advertiser, too) Jim Ross. It was so good, it’s worth sharing. Ross, as many of you know, was one of the many folks who worked to elect San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom so he knows a thing or two about “progressives.”

Thank you….For taking on Lakoff. The guy is the spokesperson for the Doormat Democrats. The liberals that have so much white liberal guilt that they can not stand up for themselves. He is in such vogue right now because he is part of the nexus. There is a whole world of deep liberal activists who don’t know how to win and I think are a little scared of what they will do if they win. The problem is people gave these doormat democrats $30 million last year, which was wasted on navel gazing, self absorbed activities and not used to move voters. The reason why Democrats keep losing national elections is people like this who are trying to tell us how to communicate with people like this. The Democrat’s audiences are not a bunch of liberals in Marin, San Francisco or Berkeley. But people living in trailers in rural Ohio, Oregon, New Mexico, Michigan and a thousand of other places around the country. Until we can talk to these people in a way that matters to them we will continue to lose.
We should not go to George Lakoff seeking guidance but to the record store, or iTunes and listen to the stories of the people in swing states. They are telling us what the want and what they want to hear, we just need to shut up and listen.

Ross’s points were underscored by this Joe Klein’s column, “The Benetton-Ad Presidency” in Time. It’s not available on line* but here’s the part that stuck with me:
…Bush’s plainspoken, easy-going manner does have policy implications. It send a clear message of acceptence to the new immigrants. “My father met the President,” says Bobby Jindal, a young Louisiana Republican and the first Indian American to be elected to Congress in nearly five decades. “He’s a building contractor and he was working on hurricane repair in Florida. Jeb Bush and the President came to his site one day , and he took pictures with both. The picture with Jeb was standard meet and greet. With the President, it was completely different: The two of them are standing there, with their hands in their pockets, laughing about something like they’re best friends. My dad is wearing his baseball cap, and I asked him why didn’t take his cap off and show some respect. ‘I forgot he was the President,’ my father said. ‘He just seemed like a regular guy.’ A lot of immigrants like my dad just simply feel comfortable with the man.”
Klein goes on to make the point that it’s not just immigrants who the Republican party is courting as if they were seniors looking for prom dates. Bush’s cabinet is more diverse – ethnically and by gender – than any in history. Unlike a lot of politicians, Bush seems to like people. Here’s Klein quoting Texas Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison: ” ‘He doesn’t talk to a woman as if he’s talking to a woman. He doesn’t trivialize or condescend. He never condescended to Ann Richards when he ran against her for Governor. Women notice that.’ ”
*Editor’s complaint: When, oh when, is Big Media gonna find a way to let sites like this one send them more subscribers? How come I can’t link to this story which might encourage folks who don’t subscribe to Time to do so? Huh?

Share  Posted by Chris Nolan at 3:52 PM | Permalink

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