Is Waldman not referring to Dems like Mr. Clement and Mr. Cooper (who just voted against SCHIP)?
There is a whole generation of Democrats -- politicians, congressional staff, political consultants, and party functionaries -- who either started their careers or matured during the Clinton years, when the dominant Democratic strategy was one of triangulation, long before it was given that name. They spent their time worrying not about how to contrast themselves with Republicans, but how to contrast themselves with other Democrats.Waldman argues that the Democrats are going to squander all the public's readiness to hear how government can actually work (as it does with SCHIP and how it should with adequate infrastructure financing) and find themselves on the defensive if they do not make the case for constructive programs of uplift and repair.
The difference between progressives and conservatives in 2007 could not be more stark:
Progressives believe we're all in it together, while conservatives say we're all on our own and we're all out for ourselves. Progressives think government has to do the things markets can't do -- and when it does them, it ought to do them well. Conservatives are so blinded by their antigovernment ideology that when they get hold of government they turn it into a corroded mess of cronyism, corruption, and incompetence, a dilapidated whorehouse where the plumbing doesn't work, the paint is peeling off the walls, and everything is for sale.You should read this article just to see how Waldman shows how a junior high debater could "rip apart" Rudi Giuliani's abstract appeals that SCHIP is "socialized medicine."