Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Clinton & the Dems Should Not Cede the South

A new wave of Dixie Democrats is re-awakening and they're not the same ole bigots of the past.

They may not be the most progressive left wing of the party either, but they're not the same ole southerners as the dinosaurs of the past. Change in the South tends to be more incremental.

Some people assume Edwards supporters will go for Obama. Based on what? In the FL counties that voted for Edwards, especially those bordering Alabama and Georgia, Clinton was a very close second. I've read reports that some polling data shows Clinton was the second choice for many voters who have voted for either Edwards or Obama.

I have also heard a retired vet of the U.S. Army Airborne Division say he would vote for Hillary because of his complete disgust and disillusionment with the republicans and the fact that he, his family and from what he could tell almost EVERYONE did better economically under Bill Clinton. So he would vote for Hillary based on that.

I also listened to John Grisham, the writer from Mississippi who lives in Virginia now. He explained on Charlie Rose last night why he supports Clinton and why in 8 years (after some 'seasoning' he thinks Barack would make a great president). I think Grisham also taps into a stream of some of the educated males of the south who see the economic disparities affecting their friends, neighbors, communities and are not so selfish like the Trent Lotts and old guard of southern white republicans.

Look at the Edwards votes in Florida. The Clinton campaign has no reason to cede any of the democratic voters in the South, including adult white males. Not everyone is an angry irrational reactionary; some are just workaday regular guys that are more pragmatic than ideological and who want the best for their families and friends.

We now know for sure (30+ years of hard facts and economic data) the republicans reserve the 'best' for all their rich cronies and to hell with the rest of us.

Let us not forget: Karl Rove, Tom DeLay, Jack Abramoff and the scores of corporate lobbyists sucking like the greedy pigs they are at the public trough these past 8 years. And don't forget about the $490,195,000,000 -- Yep, that's $490 BILLION (that we know about) spent on the illegal Iraq invasion. And that's only (what they've been forced to make public) about the war in Iraq -- not the concomitant costs here, elsewhere, or any of the costs associated with the war-dead or war-wounded.

Democrats can take back (a large part of) the south, they really can. But they sure can't 'play the race card' if they're going to do it. If they go there, they can forget about it.

Especially since mainstream (broadcast) media has proved they're in the hip pocket of the republican party -- after all, they're OWNED by corporate America and Wall Street, the very ones who are pillaging your and other's 401k and pension plans, stripping the remaining jobs of benefits wherever possible (except for the upper tiers), shipping your jobs overseas every day. The ones they decide to bring back, pay a lot less and have no benefits. You really think there's not a corporate agenda at work?

Bless John Edwards for raising some critically important issues and highlighting the economic disparities which have exponentially grown under the Republicans the past 30 years (interruped only by Bill Clinton's term in office) and which have accelerated under George Bush and Dick Cheney.

Your vote counts this year more ever. Probably more than any since FDR and John F. Kennedy. It's the defining vote of a nation to either kickstart into the 21st century or come to a dead stop in the 20th. A new future or the old past, that's what this election is about. I agree with Grisham when he said Hillary is ready to be President from day one. In eight years, Obama will be ready on his first day in office.

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