CommunityFDL Main Blog

The Broken Message Machine of the Democratic Party

Jonathan Alter argues that even though ending the funding for the Iraq war will not find soldiers on the battlefield who suddenly run out of bullets, that's the perception that most Democrats are facing from their constituents.
The question that naturally arises is how did this happen? Why would Americans, who overwhelmingly want a forced end to the war, favor every measure for achieving that other than de-funding? How did it happen that — to use Alter's formulation — "Americans have been convinced" of a patent falsehood: that de-funding would "endanger the troops"?
And yet exactly this nonsensical notion was permitted not only to take hold, but to become unchallengeable conventional wisdom in our public debate over the war. The whole debate we just had was centrally premised on an idea that is not merely unpersuasive, but factually false, just ridiculous on its face. That a blatant myth could be outcome-determinative in such an important debate is a depressingly commonplace indictment of our dysfunctional media and political institutions.

But the real reason this happened is because Democrats not only allowed it to occur, but eagerly helped it. As much as anyone else, even leading anti-war Democrats such as Carl Levin and Barack Obama continuously equated de-funding with a failure to "support the troops."

The Democratic message machine is horribly broken (and Obama in particular seems incapable of opening his mouth without repeating Republican talking points).   But perhaps this is in part because Rahm Emanuel, as Democratic Caucus Chair, is in charge of Democratic House messaging.

Check out the YouTube above and watch Rahm doing his job.  

Anybody see a problem? 

(Thanks to John Amato at C&L for making the above clip) 

Previous post

The Organized Church's Complicity in Evil and Sin

Next post

Can't Quite Face the Snark...

Jane Hamsher

Jane Hamsher

Jane is the founder of Her work has also appeared on the Huffington Post, Alternet and The American Prospect. She’s the author of the best selling book Killer Instinct and has produced such films Natural Born Killers and Permanent Midnight. She lives in Washington DC.
Subscribe in a reader