Let's read the whole big article. Some excerpts:
The sudden Democratic obeisance to the Netroots fills many in the party’s centrist cadres with despair bordering on panic—for they see the likes of Stoller and Moulitsas as “McGovernites with modems,” in the choice phrase of Marshall Wittman, a Republican apostate now ensconced at the Democratic Leadership Council.Typical nitwit Democratic attempt at a catchy phrase. I'm putting this on my list with "Stay and pay."
More than a few leading GOP lights agree, happily foreseeing the liberal bloggers’ leading the opposition down (okay, further down) the primrose path into lefty irrelevance. As Newt Gingrich put it bluntly in Newsweek, “I think the Republican Party has few allies more effective than the Daily Kos.”I've quoted that one before myself. It's the meme. Is it true?
[Many observers point out] that Kos and his allies see themselves not as ideologues but as pragmatists, aspiring players. And, indeed, time and again, Kos has declared that his main interest is in regaining power, by whatever means necessary. In his keynote at his Las Vegas convocation, he declared, “Republicans have failed us because they can’t govern; Democrats have failed us because they can’t get elected.” His mantra on other occasions has been “I’m just all about winning.”So Kos just wants to be the mechanism by which Democrats obtain power? There's no substantive content, just trust in this party?
[There is] utter disarray on display over money in the Democratic Party’s upper echelons. A little more than a month ago, a meeting between party chair Howard Dean and Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee chairman Rahm Emanuel broke out into a yelling match. The dispute centered on Dean’s insistence on a “50-state strategy,” with resources being invested broadly and with an eye beyond 2006, and Emanuel’s belief that cash should be funneled predominantly into races where Democrats stand the best chance of making gains. (Democrats must pick up fifteen seats in the House and six in the Senate to retake control of Congress.) The two men haven’t spoken since.Yeah, that goes on my list too. I never had a problem with that syntax though. I thought it was like get it together, man. You can say that to one guy. See, I'm sticking up for Democrats. Give me some credit!
As confused and conflicted as the Democrats appear on matters pecuniary, they are even worse when it comes to formulating a coherent governing agenda. For more than a year, there was talk on Capitol Hill of the need to devise some Democratic version of Gingrich’s famous Contract With America. Then, last month, the document emerged at last. On the plus side, the party had abandoned its previous slogan: the syntactically challenged “Together, America Can Do Better.”
On the minus side, the replacement was an object lesson in vacuity—“New Direction for America”—and the contents it framed turned out to be a shopworn list of vaguely stated Democratic goals—lowering the cost of college, lowering gas prices, restoring fiscal responsibility, blah blah blah—without any coherent vision, never mind firm programmatic commitments, to animate or back them up.Oh, they are so dismally uninspiring. Note the absence of national security substance in that. That's something Kos and others notice:
Observing that in recent polls 75 percent of Democrats say they favor withdrawing some or all of the troops now stationed in Iraq, [Matt Stoller at MyDD] wrote, “When the Democratic ‘leadership’ holds positions in contrast to the vast majority of self-identified Democrats, then what we have is not a division. That is, instead, a dislocation.”So depressing.
More than any other single factor, that dislocation has created the context in which Kos and his allies have found their traction.... Though they often pay a degree of lip service to a panoply of left-bent concerns, they are essentially single- (or, being generous, double-) issue activists: more than happy to wage the 2006 campaign as a referendum on the Iraq war—and on a generalized indictment of the Bush administration’s incompetence and mendacity. Their populist impulses are real enough, but they are wedded to no overarching set of policies, let alone an encompassing philosophy. They no more have a fully elaborated or articulated vision of what a 21st-century Democratic Party should stand for than do the hated members of the Washington hierarchy.