“I was a Republican until they lost their minds”
July 31, 2006, 3:09 pm
Filed under: candidates/campaigns/elections

Gotta love Charles Barkley. LINK.


Tactical brilliance
July 31, 2006, 3:07 pm
Filed under: candidates/campaigns/elections

Jake Tapper of ABC interviewed the Republican National Committee’s comm director over the weekend who said that R congressional candidates would defend themselves against Ds by saying that Democrats would raise taxes.

You have to admire the tactic, in which they win coming and going. Spend the country into a record deficit on the things you want– and then accuse those who want to fix the deficit of being tax raisers (which benefits you, too). Um, is there another way of cutting a deficit?

(Oh, right, cutting spending. How’s that going, guys? )

Memos. Yeah, that’s the ticket.
July 31, 2006, 2:49 pm
Filed under: candidates/campaigns/elections, handlers

From today’s WaPo, a story on the so-called Atlas Project:

“…This fall, the three founders, as well as a few full-time staffers, will begin studying election results from the past two presidential races in the 12 to 14 states likely to provide the margin of victory for the next president.

The group will then travel to the battleground states to interview elected officials, campaign operatives and key activists to learn about winning in these critical states.

The third leg of the project will be a broad polling and targeting operation. Three prominent polling firms — Garin Hart Yang Research Group, Penn Schoen & Berland and Brilliant Corners — will conduct the surveys, while Copernicus Analytics will analyze demographic data so political messages can be crafted to reach very small constituencies.

Finally, the group will draft memos focused on the individual states and based on everything they have learned…”

Steve Rosenthal, one of the three founders of the project, goes on to be quoted

“In the heat of an election, it seems we’re always playing catch-up,” Rosenthal said. “Our goal with this project is to bring together the best strategic thinkers — the innovators at the state and national level — to learn from what’s been done over the past several elections.”

We’re always playing catchup for a reason; operatives like Rosenthal largely ignore innovators– unless they’re Republicans– and end up fighting the last battle, not the one they’re in. This project as described just continues that tradition, sadly.

Kinky Friedman for TX Governor slogan: “How hard could it be?”
July 31, 2006, 12:35 am
Filed under: candidates/campaigns/elections, writing/language

WaPo profiles him here.

Soda or pop?
July 31, 2006, 12:26 am
Filed under: writing/language

I’m late to this, natch, but I love it anyway.

Liberals Gone Wrong, Part I
July 31, 2006, 12:11 am
Filed under: candidates/campaigns/elections, handlers was established in the heat of the Clinton impeachment, pioneering online organizing and fundraising tactics. But they’ve become foolish.

Old example: organizing against layoffs at the Tribune Co. newspapers late last year. See Jonathan Weber’s recounting here. (Disclosure: I’ve worked for Weber in the past.)

New example: They’ve mounted TV ads against a slate of Republican house members, including the an R representing a D seat in Connecticut. See them here. (link is to a contribution page– click on “ad” in the upper right quadrant of the page. These ads are a classic example of where liberals (and their consultants) go wrong– being shrill, over-the-top, and downright wrongheaded about symbolism (a red hand really has to do with stealing, and none of the incumbents are accused of theft!). Design Observer has a detailed deconstruction here.

This is the kind of stuff that makes people hate politics. And liberals getting symbolism wrong–over and over– makes me hate liberals.
UPDATE: Great book on the topic: Danny Goldberg’s “How the Democrats Lost Teen Spirit.”

Aaron Sorkin’s Studio 60 “cold open” is up on youtube
July 30, 2006, 9:45 pm
Filed under: TV/Movies

Here. UPDATE: Nevermind, Youtube took it down.

A draft of the whole pilot script is here.

Netflix (in a deal with NBC) will release the actual pilot next week.