At This Point, I Could Get Behind an “Eyes on your Own Paper” Party

The “Eyes on Your Own Paper” party would be like the Libertarians but with less “I am a Rock, I am an Island” sing-alongs.  Ha, can Libertarians even have sing-alongs?

Probably not.  Okay, let’s say “I am a rock; I am an island” sing-alones.

Anyway, I tease because I love.

The one thing I’ve been mulling over after my trip to Memphis and my discussions with various folks is that there is a loose consensus on the ground about what Democrats should be focusing on (see LWC for more).  I have talked to folks from all over the state and they want more jobs, better education, accurate health information, lower infant mortality, safer neighborhoods, etc.  And they want Democrats to run as Democrats, to know what we are and what we stand for and to run strong on that.  And for politicians who consider themselves Democrats but don’t subscribe to some of our core beliefs to be able to articulate why and for that “why” to be something other than “Because if I was for blah, blah, blah, I couldn’t get elected.”

I don’t know how many more Come-to-Jesus meetings we can try to have in this state when it comes to the Democrats.

But let me try one more time.

If you read a lot of across-the-board bloggers (which I do) and you talk to a lot of women in this state (which I do), you know that there are a core group of concerns that most women in this state have–how is food getting on my family’s table? Is my family safe where we live?  Are my kids and/or the kids in my community getting the best education they can?  Are people getting a chance for the best life they can or are they getting screwed over by forces much larger than them?

If the Democrats aren’t better on on issues that liberal women care about than Republicans, what argument do I have to insist that liberal women keep voting Democrat?  If both sides think the State owns us, then why stay loyal to Democrats?

I mention this because I don’t want you to miss the other implication of they cyberbullying bill–this is a bill that should have been researched and proposed by Democrats.  Which party is all about trying to take intent into account?  Which party is supposed to be concerned with sticking up for children?  Which party in the rest of the country is clued into the internet?

It’s not the Republicans.

But here’s what’s going to happen.  Republicans have elected powerful women to the State Legislature.  And they have signalled to the hard-core Right their willingness to fight against the basic rights of women, so it’s very difficult to attach to them that pesky feminist label.  And now you see them starting to write and pass legislation that appeals to women.  That, frankly, seems targetted to appeal to women.

If neither party is going to stand up for the fundimental rights of women to control their own bodies, why shouldn’t women voters drift to the party that puts forth legislation that addresses our concerns?

Don’t get me wrong.  I don’t like it.

But it doesn’t take a genius to see what’s going on and to wonder whether the State Democrats are going to clue in.  If the Republicans woo the votes of most of Tennessee’s women, there will be a wilderness so wild I don’t see how the Democrats come back from it.

8 thoughts on “At This Point, I Could Get Behind an “Eyes on your Own Paper” Party

  1. Pingback: TNGOP Making A Play For Women : Post Politics: Political News and Views in Tennessee

  2. Isn’t that Simon & Garfunkel song meant to be ironic?

    Seriously, though, B., have you considered that you might need to redefine what it means to be a Democratic politician? I know what it means to be a Democratic voter; it’s a lot like being Charlie Brown the placekicker with Lucy as the holder. But I think that definition holds only because Democratic voters seem to be content with their illusions. This dynamic isn’t confined to Tennessee, either. If Democratic voters insist on offering one-way loyalty, why should they ever expect they’ll get better results?

  3. that definition holds only because Democratic voters seem to be content with their illusions.

    To the contrary, I think it holds because Republicans are so adept at proving themselves to be the least palatable option. Every time you think the GOP have reached the bottom of their creepy agenda, they manage to dig out a crawl space under their all-time low.

  4. Sam, don’t go wrecking my perfectly good jokes with the truth. Anyway, I think Democrats are struggling to find ways to get some loyalty out of Democratic politicians. At least here in Tennessee.

    Andy, true enough. But you know a lot of folks so answer me this, doesn’t it seem like, no matter where you go in the state that Democrats on the ground have very similar ideas about what being a Democrat means? I really don’t understand why our elected officials don’t then.

    Also, I want to report for the record that ordinary Democrats who deal with Chip Forrester say that he’s easy to get a hold of and responsive. For what that’s worth.

  5. I know I’ve said this so many times it’s getting boring, but seriously – did it escape everybody that TN’s highest ranking woman Democrat was Kurita? While the GOP has a woman in Congress, their chair has been female, their last chair was female, women don’t get passed over for committee chair jobs, etc. Why is it that Dems are so stuck on this issue?

    I really don’t think they’ve realized, yet, how badly they’ve messed in their nest with this SJ127 business. Even the blue haired biddies that make up many of the women Dem organizations in the state are agin’ it. If not for themselves, then for their daughters.

    Seriously, they’ve just got nothin’ at this point. They’re not doing anything to advance women’s economic interests, they’re doing nothing about the sorry statistics on our access to capital and bupkus about the fact that 14% of our Legislature is female.

    If you’re not furious, you’re not paying attention, in my world.

  6. But you know a lot of folks so answer me this, doesn’t it seem like, no matter where you go in the state that Democrats on the ground have very similar ideas about what being a Democrat means? I really don’t understand why our elected officials don’t then.

    That’s the thing: they do know. They very much know. But there’s another needle that they’re trying to thread – talking enough of a “good game” to get yellow-dogs to turn out, but not so much as to shut down the spigot of dollars. (See: Chip Forrester for the counter-example of how this works.)

    Populism isn’t a profit center. It’s not a matter of “don’t understand.” It’s a matter of “won’t understand.”

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