Thursday, August 02, 2007

Well deserved pat on the back to a conservative

Via Memeorandum I saw Bryan York's article at the National Review entitled "The Vast Left-Wing Establishment." I clicked through thinking there might be a possible expose on the vast e-mail networks of left-wing bloggers including the evidently new and nefarious one run by Ezra Klein to disseminate four year old Isreali newspaper stories that tricked me yesterday.

Instead I was pretty pleasantly surprised by reading a pretty interesting and I think reasonably accurate assessment of the structural dynamics and growth pathway of the online and open left, liberal and progressive activist base from a conservative perspective.

And just look at the people who are coming to visit YearlyKos: Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, John Edwards, Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid, and many others. That’s an impressive lineup from anyone’s point of view — the kind of turnout one would normally see for a major Democratic constituency, like a big-labor organization or the NAACP. YearlyKos has attracted virtually everyone who is anyone in the Democratic establishment.

Mr. York makes a highly salient points including the fact that within six years of its start, the lefty blogosphere, or at least its netroots section has forced itself to the table for a good number of discussions. That is a pretty impressive piece of organization and power attainment by a disparate network of primarily excluded decision makers and activists whose traditional role in the party was to shut up, dial up, walk up and vote. Some of the article is a well deserved self-pat on his own back, but even between swings, it is good:

Two years ago, I wrote a book, The Vast Left Wing Conspiracy, about the emerging establishment, beginning with the pioneering netroots organization

Just before the book came out, in April 2005, Moulitsas wrote, “Quite frankly, [York] is about 2 - 5 years too early on this. We ARE building a Vast Left Wing Conspiracy to rival the $300 million conservatives spend on theirs every year. But we are but a seedling at this point. Not very ‘vast,’ in other words.” ...

In the book, I wrote that the 2004 election might turn out to be a turning point for Democrats, the moment when activists began rebuilding the liberal movement....

Democrats stand a good chance of capturing the White House next year. If they do, it will be because they were ready; the whole point of building the Vast Left-Wing Conspiracy was to create a structure that would be in place to exploit the errors of the other side when they occurred. And Republicans have supplied the errors:

I'll mildly dispute the power of the netroots, of which I self-identify as a member despite seldom reading D-Kos anymore, as the most probable Democratic nominee, Hillary Clinton, is the least friendly to the netroots among the top three Democratic candidates, and the progressive and open left still has not been able to build the CW building institutions that are available to indoctrinate new Democratic Reps and Senators unlike a nexus of DLC friendly organizations, but I agree that a good deal of the success in 2006 and 2008 will be built on previous organizational and motivational efforts of a revitalized liberal movement.

No comments: