"Our Karl Rove is the blog you should be glad that Democratic strategists don't seem to listen to"
-- what they're saying on Republican blogs

Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Democrats: The Nation Needs a Holistic "Putting Things Back on Track" Party, not an "Anti-War" Party


As you've seen in the latest polls, "W" is down, congress is down, and -- sorry -- you are down as well.

Considering you have little direct responsibility for what the majority party is doing to our country, this poor showing is still completely your failing. Why? Because you should be seen as the only hope for the country to get out of the quagmire that "W" and the 'Pubs have gotten us into. Yet, you're not. And you're running out of time to change deep-seated brand perceptions for the '06 elections.

The press seems intent on calling people pro-war or anti-war, and that's just a trap. You need to introduce a new persona the debate -- a persona that redefines the lines.

Do not get stuck in the pro or anti-war lines any longer. Make your side the "Getting Things Back on Track" side.

Americans are generally of the belief that Bush and his colleagues have made a mess of things, but at the same time, they don't want to see Democrats just stand up and point fingers (see Gallup polls).

Instead, focus on how your platform -- putting things back on track -- is about just that. Make "Democrat" synonymous with putting things back on track -- the feeling that Democrats have the logic, facts, and insight to analyze the situation and make the necessary changes to regain America's footing in the following areas:

The Iraq War
- Internationalize and legitimize the peacekeeping mission and political stewardship
The War on Terror Organizations
- Get our sights back on al'Qaida before they strike us again
- Not just regaining old jobs, but creating new, better jobs for Americans
Gas Prices
- Display America's global leadership by convening an international Fossil Fuel Summit to ensure gas prices once again become reasonable

Stand on these four pillars, own these four pillars, and embody these four pillars. Only through consistent adoption and communication of this go to market strategy will you begin to sway public opinion to start trusting your party to run America once again.

Rudy Giuliani said it best at the RNC Convention in 04...

"Neither party has a monopoly on virtue. But I do believe that there are times in our history when our ideas are more necessary and important for what we are facing."

...and the time is now for solemn, rational, fact-based leadership that Democrats are naturally more attuned to than the ideological Republicans in place today.

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Rove to Democrats: Extreme Left Does Not Beat Extreme Right


It started out fine enough, when an anti-Bush mother-of-a-dead-soldier decided to stage a mini-protest outside of "W's" ranch in Crawford. The first few days went really well; Cindy Sheehan got a lot of press, sympathy, and gave a face to the negative side of the war effort.

Now, however, the Sheehan protest experience is rapidly deteriorating due to the hijacking of her cause by a bunch of anti-war/anti-Bush groups, which causes a strategic problem: Democrats need the money and votes from Liberal Activist Groups (yup, that's LAG), yet you also need to steer clear of them because they are a burden to your attempts to recapture the respect and dignity of the vast Moderate Majority of Americans.

Sheehan started out with a very effective message and campaign. But like fruit flies to a rotting banana, the LAGs glommed on, pimping her out to prostitute for their more divisive and angry agenda. The net result: At best, a much less sympathetic figure of Sheehan has emerged. At worst, a complete backfire of what was a very effective campaign.

MoveOn.org, Michael Moore, and other "brands" are just as unpopular with regular Americans as radical conservative groups. The difference is, the radical conservative groups hide behind a church steeple, which most people respect and utilize as part of their spiritual lives. MoveOn.org and Moore are not attached to people's daily spiritual endeavors, so these institutions don't have the same ability to gain sympathy or empathy from Americans.

It's time for tough-love with the LAGs. Treat them as they are: very important base-warming institutions. Feed them enough to keep the base warm, but do not overfeed them, because the Moderate Majority will reject their anger and venom (unless, of course, "W" screws things up even more, in which case we're likely to go back to 70's-style liberalism thriving in America).

Senator Biden is striking the right tone now on Iraq. Don't worry about presidential politics now -- focus on 2006, and go speak with him before speaking out. Get on his message, and take better advantage of the awful mess this administration has gotten itself into through blind faith and ideological hubris.

Wednesday, August 03, 2005

Rove to Democrats: It’s Time for Recess!

Schoolyard bully-cum-President George W. Bush always liked recess. In school, recess was the time to recover from the constant droning by teachers about liberal activist topics like biology, chemistry, and physics. It was also the time when he could put his real talents to good use: he could corral like-minded folk and bully the rest of the class by utilizing the time-tested tools of intimidation, fear, and tests of loyalty.

I'm sure you remember the schoolyard bully in grade school. Well, now he's President. And, in case it wasn't clear to everyone, he's still playing the schoolyard bully role in his current job. But instead of hiding behind teachers that turned the other cheek because his daddy was an Important Person, he now hides behind a gang of talk show and new media activists that provide him cover.

And here we are, once again, observing our Bully-in-Chief utilizing his favorite period: recess. By using congressional recess as a loophole strategy to appoint people to key positions in government -- positions designed to be approved by our democratically elected representatives -- he is once again playing schoolyard bully during recess.

Sure, most presidents use recess appointments strategically. To say that Bush is alone here is unfair. But what is very clear is that, as usual, Bush is taking an established precedent and blowing the doors off of it and magnifying his vision of consolidated executive power.

George W. Bush appointed John Bolton during recess because he could not get his pick past America's representatives in a high-profile set of hearings. So, in essence, "W." decided that Americans were wrong, and went around us to put the guy he wanted in the post anyway.

Is this "Democracy on the March?" No. It's the schoolyard bully during recess.