Public Nuisance

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The first Republican president once said, "While the people retain their virtue and their vigilance, no administration by any extreme of wickedness or folly can seriously injure the government in the short space of four years." If Mr. Lincoln could see what's happened in these last three-and-a-half years, he might hedge a little on that statement.
-Ronald Reagan

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Sunday, December 21, 2003
The Establishment

Deaniacs take a certain delight in the belief they are being persecuted. Look at the comment threads at Kos or the Dean blog or here and this definitely shows as a recurring theme. The evil Establishment is out to get the virtuous Deanies and will blush at no deed, however foul, to stop them. Sort of like LOTR, which is a comparison made directly by a commenter on the Dean blog.

And yet Trippi today on This Week couldn't even say what that evil establishment consists of. As Tapped pointed out, the anti-Dean effort has really amounted to very little. Some nasty ads which seem to have been financed by unions, a few press releases from the DNC, and the criticism of rival candidates. Not what you would call an all out war. And the claim is even less impressive when you note that the most important member of the party establishment to take an active role in this campaign has endorsed Dean.

Although the DC party is dominated by evil cockroaches who are terrified by the fear that the Dean legions will soon destroy their parasitic power, some of them seem to be heroic leaders who struggle boldly for truth, justice, and the American Way. Although these groups could not be more distinct morally, they often are remarkably difficult to tell apart. The only sure difference is that the latter have endorsed Dean and the former have either endorsed or are assumed to be supporting other candidates.

The Deanies are very forgiving revolutionaries: all it takes is an endorsement to transform a kulak exploiter into a proletarian hero. Even a self-criticism can be entirely dispensed with.

Those endorsements are coming in greater number lately, which I suspect is, ironically, a symptom of the very failings of the party leadership that Deanies and other activists are justly irate at. Some of those endorsers may sincerely believe that Dean is the best candidate, but I suspect that others think he is a probable disaster and no more want to see him nominated than I do. The problem is that politicians figure they can help along their own careers by endorsing Dean and drawing on those volunteers themselves at a time of future need. For a careerist politician not overly concerned with the welfare of the party, a Dean endorsement is looking like a good move about now.

Note: Patrick e-mailed to complain that I was ascribing the Deaniac attacks on the alleged Democratic establishment to him. That was never my intention; I was referring to commenters such as Adamsj, Kathryn C, and Barry who responded to the linked post. But what I wrote failed to express that clearly.