Tuesday, January 20, 2004

Barbaric Yawp
I have been waiting to see reaction to Howard Dean's screeching speech to his supporters last night in Iowa, and here's a summary. If you haven't heard it, Dean was trying to fire up the troops by listing the states to which he is going to take his campaign. His voice shredding and breaking, he concluded the remarks with a kind of strangled cry--half Roger Daltrey on "Won't Get Fooled Again," half stepped-on cat. I heard the soundbite this morning and instantly thought, "Uh oh." It sounded like the man was melting down. Little things matter more now, when the expectations game is the reality and the time frames are compressed. The widespread derision he's enduring today doesn't help with Dean's job one--finishing first or a close second in New Hampshire.

Recommended reading: This article, albeit long, is a must: It's Robert Kuttner of the American Prospect on the road to permanent one-party, anti-small-d-democratic rule--we're already on it.

Also, you can take back 45 minutes of your life tonight by learning real State of the Union here. And also here--although the latter, from Atlantic Monthly, will take more than 45 minutes to read. But the good thing is that you won't have to look at and listen to Bush. And in both cases, the information will be both accurate and truthful.

And finally, a friend checks in from Iowa with his caucus experience. His experience is not especially dramatic--it's not like John Kerry himself came over and asked for his support (or like Howard Dean screeched at him)--but it's worthwhile because it's a tale of real participatory democracy, more real even than going behind a curtain and casting a vote (or declaiming away in a blog, to be sure) because you literally must stand up and be counted.

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?