Tuesday, November 15, 2016
Dear People In Charge of the Democratic Party,
So, here it is. I have voted Democratic for my whole life – all fifty years of it so far. I am socially and fiscally liberal. I am Keynesian, Great Society thinker. The candidates I have supported have never made it out of the primary system…but I am used to that. It’s gotten to the point where I’m more numb than disappointed.
In the general elections during my lifetime, I voted for Clinton, Obama (twice), Gore, Clinton (twice) Dukakis, and Mondale. I didn't vote for Kerry because he was just too damn boring and uninspiring. [In retrospect, that was probably a mistake.] I didn't support any of these folks in the primary, and that's saying a lot because I'm born and raised in New Hampshire – where we get a heaping helping of presidential primaries.
Here is what I got to say to y'all right now while you're hiring high paid consultants to figure out what went wrong: Barack Obama broke a string of seriously boring candidates. Clinton was a return to white bread, corporate-lawyer type candidates. THAT is what happened.
Say what you will about Trump, but the one thing he's not is boring. He's interesting! Now, he's probably dangerous and mentally imbalanced - but he's interesting.
Find someone we can stand behind with enthusiasm! Find someone interesting without all the imbalance stuff. Find someone who is not afraid that every word has to be exactly right. Don't get all bottled up in one word (deplorable) losing the election. You lost the election not because of that one word, but because there was nothing to use to come back from. Clinton basically admitted to smoking weed and having sex in the back of a pickup truck. People loved it. He wasn't afraid. He had the courage of his convictions.
Dukakis didn't lose because of that tank ride. He lost because he was boring. Mondale: snooze. Gore - for heaven's sake his name even rhymes with "bore". That's almost as bad as that joke about Lou Gehrig not foreseeing himself getting Lou Gehrig's disease!
You lost 2016 to Donald doggam Trump. You lost to an orange manatee. A man who - in public - was condescending, rude and diagnosably antisocial, if not psychotic. Hell, for all I could tell, that was part of his game plan! That's who you freaking lost to! It’s like my Beloved Boston Red Sox losing to the Bad News Doggam Bears. Remember that old joke about John Ashcroft losing his 2000 US Senate reelection race to a dead opponent? If I were you, I would stop giggling about that now because Donald Trump just became your Mel Carnahan. [I'm not inferring Trump is dead. Please, role with a vibe for once in your buttoned up, boring-ass lives!]
So, listen. You've got 3 or so years to dig through your ranks to find someone with whom ‘Murica can relate. Someone who can withstand - even laugh off - a "deplorable" or two. Someone with power of conviction, a powerful persona and a personality. And someone who can do all that and manage and govern like Hillary could have.
Calm your indignant selves down: I'm not saying Hillary would not have made a good president. As time went on, I found things I really liked about her. [But I had to actively try to find them.] I found her to be a great listener and she didn't turn every moment in front of the cameras into a sound bite. If she was there with you, she was there with you, and that's an admiral quality in a politico these days. Even Bernie wasn’t as authentic in person as she seemed to be.
She's just a little too...Yale. A little too Goldman Sachs. A little too Gucci. A little too Mitt Romney. A little too Bill Moyers. You know what I mean? You hear what I'm saying?
Maybe we could find someone a little less Yale and a little more "State U".
Maybe we could find someone a little less Goldman Sachs and a little more Chevrolet.
Maybe we could find someone a little less Gucci and a little more Land’s End.
Maybe we could find someone a little less Mitt Romney and a little more Sarah Silverman.
Maybe we could find someone a little less Bill Moyers and a little more Trevor Noah.
It's a big doggam party. If you look, you'll find him or her. You will. Trust me, you will. But you have look like you’re thinking you’re going to find him or her – not like when you look for your keys even though you’re absolutely sure your wife took them. Not that kind of looking. Really, really looking.
And you have to be ready because when you find him or her, s/he is bound to have a few warts. You can’t take risk and be unscarred. That’s just true. S/he won't pass every sniff test. That’s OK. Have some faith in your people and in your ability to find people in your party.
Good luck. I’m rootin for ya. Seriously. We owe it to our country to be more effective than we are. Thankfully, we haven’t set the bar too high, lately.
Posted by Eddie Proulx