View 727 Thursday, June 07, 2012
I was going to write a short piece on the Republican ground game in Wisconsin, but Karl Rove has done that in this morning’s Wall Street Journal, and it’s worth your time. In a Blue State, the state in which the Progressive Movement was born, the Republicans got more of their people to the polls than the Democrats despite the bussed in out of state union poll workers. The recall result was so decisive that there was, apparently, little fraud – although there’s evidence that there are “undiscovered” boxes of mail in ballots which will now conveniently be forgotten, since there aren’t enough to change this landslide.
The important message is
The recall contest was expected to be close. A Democratic pollster had the race at three points just a few days out. GOP tracking surveys showed the contest tightening as well. Yet Mr. Walker won by 172,739 votes, up from his 2010 margin of 124,638 votes. http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052702303665904577450533294600706.html?mod=googlenews_wsj
This was a maximum effort mission for the unions. You may be sure that the Democrats played their best ground game in this election, which, after all, they launched because of the governor’s actions on collective bargaining by public employee unions. Maximum effort, and they lost.
What this should mean to the Tea Party and other Republicans is that the kind of politics described in Mr. Heinlen’s Take Back Your Government is still relevant. Much of the book is out of date (and the book is out of print, alas) but his point was that it is still possible for citizens to be part of self government.
Of course self government requires citizens willing to take part in self government. That has always been the problem. Historically, when it was far less important who held public office, you could get by as things deteriorated until citizens had had enough and organized a “good government” movement to “turn the rascals out;” the politicians would sigh, retreat a bit, wait patiently for the googoos to find that government is time consuming and often boring, and come back in.
The new system in which public employee unions donate money to politicians who then vote raises, pensions, medical care, and other goodies for public employees looked impregnable, and perhaps in places gone as far as California (where for instance the prison guards are paid great sums while the courts hold the state prison conditions to be intolerable, this in a state where it costs 4 times as much per head to keep a prisoner as it does in other states), but not all states have gone that far. Wisconsin clearly hadn’t.
It was a bad mistake for Romney not to have been on the victory platform with Governor Walker, but it wasn’t a crippling one, and Romney is trying his best to make up for it as political strategists consider the implications of the Wisconsin election.
What’s important here is that the war is not lost. It is possible to reverse the trend. For a while, at least, you can take back your government. The key is to be involved. The ground game is still the most important game in politics. There have been historic elections decided by one vote per precinct. It’s tougher now – but in this upcoming election the stakes couldn’t be higher.
And we can win.
Robert A Heinlein’s "Take Back Your Government!" is available as a Baen eBook, for $5. I have it on my Kindle. The link is http://www.baenebooks.com/p-1154-take-back-your-government.aspx.
If you order it, you can download it in many reader formats, without DRM, including an RTF file, which can be loaded into many word processing programs.
The Boy President, Bill Clinton, is now being excused for some of his remarks because he is 65 years old. http://www.newser.com/story/147603/team-clinton-shut-up-bubba.html
I have this mail:
That, as it was, the voter turnout was 119%, and yet we won. Imagine the slaughter it would have been if ONLY THE TRUE VOTES were counted? One per valid voter? Try to imagine the truth.
But I have no idea what it means. Does anyone have actual data? My speculations about boxes of uncounted votes are pure speculation based on past history: when votes are close, somehow there are always uncounted ballots.
© 2012, jerrypournelle. All rights reserved.