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Wednesday, August 19, 2009

The Democrats Vs. the Tea Parties Day 15: the Marie Antoinette Democrats

Marie Antoinette was an infamous monarch that lived in luxury while the citizens of France starved. She has become synonymous with a politician that has lost touch with the citizens. Antoinette was not elected and wound up having her head chopped off. The current crop of politicians will not face such a harsh fate, however, the current crop of Democratic politicians appear to want to have their proverbial heads chopped off by their constituents. Democratic politicians everywhere continue to show condescension if not downright contempt for their voters. First, there is this now infamous video of Congressman Eric Massa in which he says this stunning statement.

I will adamantly vote against the interest of my district if I think what I'm doing is right for them




That is a stunning hubris and lack of touch with the constituency. Now, Massa was just recently on Fox News and proclaimed that he is against H.R. 3200. Massa is also for single payer. His ideology is not nearly as important as his attitude. We are in a representative democracy. Massa should not take a poll before voting. Yet, he simply believes he knows better than his constituents, and that is clear from his attitude.

In this video, Congressman Barney Frank shows a downright contempt for his constituents. He is condescending, rude, and arrogant towards them. He doesn't merely disagree with their perspective but rather he talks down to them.


Then, there is this New York Times story which claims that Democratic leadership is ready to end bi partisanship and push a bill through Congress alone.

Top Democrats said Tuesday that their go-it-alone view was being shaped by what they saw as Republicans’ purposely strident tone against health care legislation during this month’s Congressional recess, as well as remarks by leading Republicans that current proposals were flawed beyond repair.

Rahm Emanuel, the White House chief of staff, said the heated opposition was
evidence that Republicans had made a political calculation to draw a line against any health care changes, the latest in a string of major administration proposals that Republicans have opposed.


Try to put this into perspective. The town halls are the visible representation of the public's backlash against this bill. Yet, every poll points to the public's outrage over the bill. The House web site often goes down because so many people are emailing questions and concerns about health care. AARP lost 60,000 members since July 1 because of their perceived support for the bill. Every which way you analyze the situation the public is rejecting this plan in a total and complete way. Yet, the Democrats aren't merely determined to pass it but jam it through the legislature if they have to.

The good news is that all of this bluster actually makes passing a bill more difficult. There's no way the Democrats would ever be able to jam a bill through on their own. Moderates would revolt knowing that they would be voted out if they signed on to a liberal bill. By showing contempt for the voters, Democrats are putting themselves just a step above Antoinette. While they won't face a real guillotine, they will face a proverbial guillotine come the next election. Watch for participants in Frank's town hall to become media stars over the next few days. His contempt for his own voters will become a new branch in this story. I can only assume that he is in a very safe district however no politician can ever get away with such contempt.

More than that, having a party that shows contempt for the voters the way the Democrats have is politically suicidal. It isn't merely these three examples. Nancy Pelosi called the protesters "astro turfers". Harry Reid called them "evil mongers". The president has suggested they are part of the problem. Robert Gibbs suggested they are brainwashed by cable news. The administration and the Democrats are blaming their inability to find consensus on health care on the voters. They seem to forget that their jobs depend on the voters. Marie Antoinette never believed her life depended on the people. She found out the hard way how wrong she was. The Democrats will soon face their day of reckoning as well.

5 comments:

lisa said...

Unfortunately they don't care about representing the American people anymore. They think they are now our rulers not our representatives and they are so drunk with power they are blinded by it.
They think what they are doing is right? Actually thye are oing what is best for their boss ,who used to be us but no longer. We lost that privialge in 7 short months.

Anonymous said...

"The town halls are the visible representation of the public's backlash against this bill." A questionable proposition at best.

"Yet, every poll points to the public's outrage over the bill." Except the one that came out today showing the Tea Partiers haven't changed anyone's opinion about health care reform.

"AARP lost 60,000 members since July 1 because of their perceived support for the bill." Compared to the 1.5 million people who renewed their membership and the 300,000 new members who signed up since July 1.

"Every which way you analyze the situation the public is rejecting this plan in a total and complete way." Maybe if Tea Partiers are the only people you consider credible.

"Yet, the Democrats aren't merely determined to pass it but jam it through the legislature if they have to." You can thank John Kyl and Charles Grassley for that. Between Grassley's statement that he'd vote against his own compromise bill if the Republicans were opposed, and Kyl's statement that the Republicans would reject any health care reform that wasn't essentially written only by the Republicans, they have delegitimized the entire Republican Party as a player in health care reform.

"Watch for participants in Frank's town hall to become media stars over the next few days." All these agitators terrorising Democratic politicians and their supporters getting their 15 minutes of fame to spew their propaganda and you still think the media is liberal?

"I can only assume that he is in a very safe district however no politician can ever get away with such contempt." Massachusetts is one of the only states represented entirely by Democrats. Somehow I don't think they'll take offense to Frank talking down to a woman holding an Obama Hitler sign accusing Frank of collaborating with Obama the Nazi Dictator.

Your attitude betrays a belief that only conservatives matter or should matter in this country. If the 25-30% of Americans who still George Bush was a good president are angry enough to scream incoherently about Nazis and Communists in the hopes it will undo their mistake of staying home during the 2008 election because McCain somehow wasn't conservative enough than that is your liability. Have fun trying to make 2 + 2 equal 5 for the next 14 months.

mike volpe said...

Which poll is that exactly? The only poll that I know of regarding the protests had people by 13 points favoring the protesters. Either way, there is no poll that says the public wants this plan.

Behind every single one of these stories you make some comment that is not rooted in reality. Every poll says that overwhelmingly the public doesn't want this. It isn't merely the conservatives that don't want it but almost everyne that doesn't want it. You are attempting to deny reality and you can do that if you please, but it won't change reality.

Anonymous said...

Today's NBC/WSJ poll shows Obama with a 20 point lead over the Republicans on health care reform. It also shows 62% of those polled said the protests did not change their minds about health care. 16% said the protests made them more likely to support health care reform.

But remember, opinion polls are only relevant for gauging people's opinions. Hence, they're only relevant as evidence of people's opinions, not as evidence of facts. After all, today's Public Policy Polling shows 40% of Americans don't know Medicare is run by the government, and that 6% don't think Hawaii is part of the United States.

You'll have to forgive me if from the polling data I've read, I have no choice but to conclude that people only oppose Obama's health care reform when they either don't know what's in it or they think something's in it that isn't really there.

After all, NBC/WSJ showed 72% of Fox News viewers believe Obama's plan covers illegal immigrants, even though it explicitly denies coverage to them in the text of the bill.

mike volpe said...

Where is this poll? The only WSJ poll I know shows falling support for health care reform. What is your point again? If you cite a poll provide a link. The WSJ/NBC poll today was not a good poll for the president.