Thursday, July 29, 2004

"What do you want?"

Markos reports on the kind of crap we have to deal with with the dinosaurs in the party leadership. He was talking with the heads of the DCCC and apparently they would like it if we stopped supporting netroots candidates:

The DCCC has to make tough choices when deciding where to put its money. There are far more worthy races, and worthy candidates, than there is cash to go around. That's a brutal reality that no amount of wishing could erase.

As a filtering mechanism, the DCCC uses fundraising as a way top determine which candidates are working hardest. the typical "serious" candidate will spend 8-10 hours on the phone every day dialing for dollars. It's brutal work, and not something that every candidate will do.

Some of you who have donated to Richard Morrison in his efforts to oust DeLay may get a call from the candidate soon (reports have been streaming in). If you donated $10 in the past, he'll ask for $10. That's the kind of commitment the D-trip is looking for.

However, they are concerned that if the marginal candidates raise money online, then they don't need to do the hard work. In other words, raising an "easy" $40K for Ginny Schrader could act as disincentive to do the hard fundraising work that will get her to the $500K to $1 million she'll need to win the district.

Hence, it's best to let candidates flail, and the ones that can somehow manage to raise the early money -- those are the ones that we should be supporting.

Has the DCCC been taken over by The Shadows? What is this? Survival of the fittest? You must struggle first before we will give you attention. We won't help you out unless you don't really need our help. We won't loan you money until you show that you don't need it.

The logic is completely circular and is based on the idea that the only "serious" candidate is one who spends all their time raising money and that raising money is the only way that proves you are serious because it is what shows you are serious.

Around and around and around and around (and down the drain we go).

It's this kind of thinking that has gotten the Democrats in such a mess in the first place. What the DCCC needs to understand is that fringe candidates should be treated like micro-loan opportunities (need $100 to start your sewing business? No problem!) Low risk, but potentially high pay off if lighting strikes and a good long term investment that could produce even better candidates down the line.

You know something is fucked when the argument against helping candidates raise money is that doing so might make it harder for them to raise money. And then they wonder why people hate politics and don't want to get involved. What person in their right mind would want to spend 8-10 hours a day begging for money? Is that the kind of person we want leading us?


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