The Widdershins


Posted on: June 30, 2017

Warning:  Be prepared to hate this post. How do I know? Because I hate myself for writing it.

Let’s back up a bit. Even before DYB’s brilliant post this week, I planned on writing about messaging. Here’s where the hate peeks in – for science respecting, policy loving “libruls”, digging deep for understanding is the mother’s milk of informed, dispassionate inquiry. I’m about to advocate something striking at the soul of that mantra – overly generalized statements aimed at evoking an emotional response.

Democrats are horrible at messaging. We are great at policy. We suck at capturing the voter’s imagination and allowing it to soar. Rethuglicans, courtesy of Frank Luntz’s rich fertilizer, are quite good at it. Think death panels, but with some truth behind it.

What blasphemy causes this change in my love of policy nuance? Simple. Democrats are whistling past the graveyard while Rethuglicans continue to foist the unmanageable brokenness of the health care and pharmaceutical industries back at Obama. Attitudes have no chameleon characteristics, they don’t change themselves.

Through adept Rethuglican messaging, Obamacare is now shorthand for every conceivable health care problem. Democrats did nothing to combat it. Now Democrats have an opportunity to change the debate. Without wading into the psychology of it, why aren’t Democrats messaging like this:

  • The ACA was nicknamed Obamacare because President Obama and Democrats cared about people. This President and Congress don’t care about people. It isn’t Trumpcare, its TrumpDontCare.
  • Since laws are supposed to fix inequities, in Republican-world it must be equitable to take away health care from 22 million people so a million rich people can get a tax break.
  • When you turn a Trillion Dollars worth of health care into tax cuts someone is going to have to come up with the difference or do without a Trillion Dollars in health care.
  • If you haven’t heard about a ban on a Dow pesticide linked to harming babies’ brains, don’t worry, there is no ban. Likewise, there’s no proven link between Dow contributing a million dollars to the Trump inaugural and Scott Pruitt meeting with the Dow CEO prior to nixing the ban.
  • Forget Kim Jong Un, the most dangerous man in the world is Mitch McConnell with $200 Billion to buy votes to hurt 22 million poor Americans.
  • If the Rethuglicans have their way, by 2036 if you need a nursing home bed, you better not out live your savings.

Essentially six statements with none of the juicy wonkiness we love around here, but lots of emotional punch to energize and anger. Why someone isn’t messaging this emotion is beyond me. Perhaps if the opportunistic wannabes so focused on climbing over Nancy Pelosi spent more time thinking about the Party instead of themselves, such messaging might have a chance.

Politically a wedge must be driven between der Trumpenfuhrer and the pitchfork/torch wielding Rethug base. Otherwise, chances for taking the House in 2018 and impeachment are severely diminished to the point of impossibility. The most potent antidote for this mad Trumpkin affection is convincing these hordes the clamorous Yam doesn’t care about them and their plight. The beauty of it is simple: He doesn’t.

This health care debate could reinvigorate the Democratic New Deal covenant. What is apparent is that the liberal caricature of conservatism isn’t a caricature at all. It is reality. This admission against interest is courtesy of Marc Thiessen, a Dubya speechwriter now writing for the Washington Post’s op-ed page:

Paying for a massive tax cut for the wealthy with cuts to health care for the most vulnerable Americans is morally reprehensible.

If Republicans want to confirm every liberal caricature of conservatism in a single piece of legislation, they could do no better than vote on the GOP bill in its current form.

But at what point do we admit that this isn’t the liberal caricature of conservatism? It’s just … conservatism.


What is so aggravating is forfeiting stimulating intellectual discourse for bumper-stickerisms. While offensive to the very core of my being, if it will rid us of the orange pariah eroding the dignity of the United States, I can live with it. What we have going for us is the truth, TrumpDontCare.

What’s on your mind today?

h/t Quixote for TrumpDontCare.

110 Responses to "TrumpDontCare…"

Sorry Prolix haven’t read the post yet. But…

@1, no worries D, you aren’t missing much. Here’s Matthew Miller who I have found to be quite reasonable in his tweets. He’s a former spokesperson for the Dept. of Justice.



Something is getting ready to happen. A 3:00 a.m. tweet from Holder telling the FBI to “be strong” is pretty ominous.


@4> Lordy! Where is the exit?? I want to get off! Driver! Let me off the bus!

18 USC 872 is extortion by an agent of the U.S. government.


North Carolina Board of Elections says “No.”

@6, add that to the growing list of all the other illegal stuff he’s done. The emolument examples alone must tally several dozens. The Rethugs don’t care. I want the mills of justice to grind faster.

Prolixious — I respectfully disagree that the Dems don’t have a message. Our candidate won the popular vote. Trumpcare is wildly unpopular. Trump’s negative ratings keep rising. Calls to vote “No” flooded the Capitol switchboards during the House hearings, and to a lesser degree the Senate version. “Stronger Together” is a clear message, and has more, well, togetherness about it and more oomph than does the tepid “Make America Great Again” which implies disregard for America today.

Trump voters are strongly motivated by racism and misogyny. We’ve seen several analyses, linked to on this blog by several of us, that looked at groups of voters and issues which were strongly identified with. Working class whites, even in rural areas, who are strongly motivated by economic issues, voted for Hillary.

There is a certain percentage of Americans who will never be moved by messages of fairness, equality, and good fortune for all. They are moved by fear, hatred, and pushing others down so they are comparatively elevated. Even in FDR’s time there were factions opposing him.

It’s true that Dem infighting is a character flaw, so to speak. And pandering to Sanders is a huge mistake. Those are issues do, unfortunately, distract from the Democratic message.

Work to stop or at least minimize voter suppression would increase Dem election victories. Another focus needs to be a concerted program to increase voter participation. These are two areas where the Dems could potentially increase the number of Dem voters. I believe focus on those problems would aid the Dems far more than would catchy slogans, though we want those also.

Minnesota is also a NO.

Luna, I think Prolix is saying that Democrats have a message, but are not good at messaging. That’s what I tried to discuss on Wed too. Problem is that messaging the message frequently means working extra hard to break through the walls the media erects for its own money-making purpose. The accusations made against Hillary and all Democrats – all the way through and after Ossoff – is that Democrats/Liberals have no message beyond “Trump is bad.” That is a lie. Democrats have a great message, Clinton had a message for every issue under the sun. But the media didn’t cover it because policy bored them. And Democrats continue to let media and GOP define its message, which is often a completely inaccurate representation of what the message is. It’s about messaging. GOP – think “pro-life” – is great at defining the argument and creating catch-phrases. They’ve been good at it for decades. Democrats, I think, try to appeal to people’s brain, not hearts. GOP goes for the emotional jugular. But humans are emotional beings and we respond to GOP’s hysteria (“death panels!”) and think Democrats’ appeal to reason is booooring (message? What message?) Democrats need to start appealing to people’s emotions. We saw this a bit with Dump’s Deathcare bill. Democrats started saying “This bill will kill people!” and GOP clutched their pearls “Oh that’s a terrible thing to say! Waahhhh!”

Well, too bad! Keep saying it because it’s true. GOP Deathcare is going to kill grandma! Start defining GOP agenda by appealing to people’s emotions because it’s the only thing we understand and remember.

GOP is great at playing the victim and it works every damned time. They are the biggest con-artists around. How do we stop them, or at least use their techniques against them? Or adopt the techniques? I don’t know…but we can’t keep doing the same thing over and over expecting different results. Something needs to change in how Democrats/Liberals approach policy and the GOP. And I think it’s time to take the gloves off. I’m glad Obama is gone because he was part of the problem with his “holier than though/can’t we all just get along” nonsense. He was doing that in the age of McConnell, one of the most evil men this country has ever had. We needed 8 years of kicking McConnell in the teeth, not appeasing him, as Obama did. So now here we are. How do we kick McTurtle and the rest of his sycophants in the teeth??

@10, Luna, your comment proves my point. You are exactly right in everything you say. I agree with you, but Luna my friend, we are the outliers. We are not normal. Most people don’t follow politics this closely. What’s even more unusual is that even within people who follow politics, those who understand policy is an even smaller subset.

For a long, long time I believed truth would win in the end. Well, I’ve been waiting for 30 years since the Raygun shining city on the hill. It ain’t gonna happen until we translate the policy through effective messaging.

All your suggestions are good ones about voter suppression. There are dozens of well-funded organizations battling voter suppression. We can talk about it from the mountaintops, but it does not capture emotion. It doesn’t drive people to the streets. It does not invigorate the way a simple slogan, “death panels” did. You say “Obamacare” to just about half the population and there is a visceral reaction that drives them to the streets.

All this doesn’t mean we don’t have a message. It means we aren’t capturing the voters’ imagination. We can turn out a parade. We can light up switchboards. That is not enough. Sustainable scaleability is the goal.

The GOP as it currently exists must be decimated and eradicated from the political landscape. The tactics started and honed by Newt Gingrich must be stopped.

Look at it like this — there is no smarter political tactician alive today than McTurtle. He is going full bore ahead in the face of 17% approval of this abortion of a health care bill. Do you think he would be doing that if he feared the backlash? He does not fear the ability of the Democrats to capitalize on this travesty.

Effective messaging is the key to it.

Here’s the dirty little secret. It’s easy to figure out how to do the right thing. The truth reveals it itself with enough hard work and science. What takes genius and more than a little talent is making it simple. That is what Frank Luntz and Lee Atwater have. The genius to capture voters’ imagination and let it run. That skill and talent is rare and that is what I’m trying to describe.

Anyway, I fully expected people to not like this post.

Who are the good Democratic messengers today?

And Prolix, I love the post! I think it’s an important subject. It’s the “what do we do now” topic that everyone must understand to move forward.

@12, DYB exactly. You explain it better than I do. Obama was part of the problem. He couldn’t allow himself to appear to be “angry” because it would affect his personal “brand”. Look where that got us.

His cool intellectualism lost the Dems the Congress because he couldn’t be seen as emotionally invested. McTurtle and the GOP knew that. There were no consequences for them going over the top.

Dems continue to fall prey to the media’s feigned outrage at calling balls and strikes. Rethugs don’t care. They are willing to take the strikes because out of the people who might listen to both sides, only one or two percent will actually care. On balance, they win by being able to motivate their hordes of mouth-breathing torch wielders.

In traditional communication theory, Dems have logical appeal and source credibility. We lack the emotional appeal. We have the logos and ethos, but we lack the pathos.

@14, D, I kept trying to think who are the good messengers while I was writing this? I agree with everything Nancy Pelosi says, but she’s horrible at messaging. I like Corey Booker and Chris Murphy, but they wallow around in the minutiae. Schatz and Kamala Harris seem to have promise, but I’m not sure of them yet. Kirsten Gillenbrand comes closest to being able to grab hearts.

Then you look at the “communications professionals” for the Democrats. They are horrible at the messaging. They are always explaining and not grabbing attention. They chew around on their words and end up being like me — using too many words instead of grabbing imagination. I think Jennifer Palmieri is awful. She wasn’t effective for Hillary.

The latest on the Mikagate, it was Jared Kushner who delivered the threats: apologize to Dump or Enquirer writes a hit piece on you.

@17> I agree on all of those. They all talk too much, try to explain too much. Which is great in theory, give the info. But in reality people tune out. We have the facts, but people want a soundbite. Gillibrand has had a few moments that registered. All the Democratic strategists need to get it together and figure this out. They need John Dingell! His Twitter is strong with pithy and funny messages. That’s really what they need to do to practice, tweet more. 140 characters or less, get your point out. Philippe Reines is good, but it’s not what he does for a living.

Or the party needs to hire people like Lauren Duca, she’s the Teen Vogue writer who has made so many waves with her political posts.



@19, Schatz is learning twitter and he admits he’s doing it to learn how to motivate. Yes, Lauren Duca is able to break through. Or maybe the DNC just needs to hire YOU. You could do both the messaging and the visualizing through the editing.


@20, Jason Kander seems to understand messaging.

What is so aggravating is forfeiting stimulating intellectual discourse for bumper-stickerisms

K.I.S.S. – Keep It Simple Stupid

How ’bout a simple graphic image of a hospital with scrolling info (a la Star Wars) showing the cuts to A.C.A./Medicaid and then cut away to a simple picture of a headstone (mournful church bells tolling in the background) with “And THEY talked about death panels”.

What? 15 seconds tops? Stretch it to 30 seconds.

The Dems could also run some 30 second ads on the economic factors of the demise of Obamacare – loss of hospital jobs. Rude Pundit did a nice piece on that.


@22 > Yep, the Susan Sarandon wing of the Democratic party didn’t take a lot of thing into account…

@27, and we have another candidate for DNC messaging guru. Why can’t people who are paid to figure this stuff out think like you do?

@31: Nah, but really it doesn’t seem difficult to do. Another might be a graphic of the Yuge tax cuts with “Here’s what they want” over it and again maybe the headstone and “Here’s what you get” or something like that. And don’t mention Trump! Make it generic “Republicans” and maybe a photo of McTurtle. LOL

Holy smokes, I am way behind on the thread. Great post Prolix!

I don’t think a snappy message is going to win over Rump supporters, what will get their attention is when they lose their healthcare, medicare and medical.

Until the rubber meets the road, they will continue to deny their voting mistake.

We have never set the bar so low for a President before, and I have little faith that any combination of words is going to change those that voted for BigRump.

I do hope I am proven wrong.

Speaking of Trump (were we?) who would have thought it would be he that makes lil Mika a sympathy figure?

OTOH, she and schmoe played with fiyah and they got burned.

28 Prolix
June 30, 2017 at 2:48 pm

Yes, even some of us political junkies are having a hard time keeping caught up on all the $hit that has been hitting the fan. And we are only getting some of the details that are being leaked to the public.

The Washington Post, and Maddow are doing a more than fantastic job!!

21 states now resisting Kobach commission.

Just a dash of a little good news, every now and then to try and keep hope alive. 😉

@35, thanks Shadow.

You are right, the 20% that are hard core Trumpkins are not reachable. We need to message the Independents and the soft center right contingent.

Our message is right, it is just packaging it with the right flare to capture the imagination of voters.

The hard-core Trumpkins really don’t care what Dolt 45 does. He could do and say anything. It won’t move them. They know he’s a turd, but he’s their turd. They are lost souls.

@36, someone said today, I think it was Brian Fallon, “When Mika and Joe say that Trump has changed, he hasn’t. He’s just turned his venom on them. That’s what has changed. Now they have to have a reason to fight back and justify their sycophancy prior to the election.”

In my book that checks out.

@40: and justify their sycophancy prior to the election

And they have been in complete denial over that.

I rarely agree with Ross Douthat about anything, but I wholeheartedly agree with this:


Our SoS is a Republican — the only one elected to statewide office between 2012 and 2016. However, she was endorsed by the state teachers association and is reputed to be in the mold of one of those rare really moderate Republicans.

Just saw that WA is not releasing the requested info. Will call anyway and commend this!

Here’s some messaging. The media will drown even the best messaging with “But her emails” or the equivalent in 2020.

Heh, here’s a good definition of the Repugs:

OT, but fabulous (in a scary way):

39 Prolix

My guess is that some of the 10% that voted for MassiveRump are BernieBros that would never vote for an intelligent woman. I think the only thing that can reach them are free giveaways, like free rent, school, food and pot. Bernie just offered free college, healthcare and pot, no snappy message there.

I also have seen that some supporters that hated Obama for the color of his skin, wanted someone that would reverse his policies and existence…turning them around would take another white male, IMHO.

Prolix, enjoyed your post, and also all the comments. Am in a rush today but hopefully get back later tonight. Happy Friday everyone!

Was it yesterday we were talking about the CA single payer bill? Even The Intercept calls bullshit on the alt-left.

@42 Haha same here! I’m glad someone with a big microphone calls them out on that. They were one of Dump’s favorite shows for a long time. There’s a reason for that….

@46 > Yep, some people understood Clinton and her message just fine… Those who didn’t were listening to something else and had their prejudices amplified by the media. Which remains in denial about their role (see: Morning Moe and Mika.)

@4, Prolix: Rachel had a segment last night entitled,”Repubs already working to discredit Trump Russia Probe.” She referenced an odd request to the FBI re FISA warrants from Grassley and Graham of the Judiciary Committee. The request has been posted on her website. She said the Judiciary committee appears to be gearing up to challenge the basis for the Russia probe, which they suspect is the Steele dossier, rather than pursuing obstruction (via Comey Memos) which would logically be the focus of that Committee’s investigation. I tried to copy the video but blew it. Another “watch this space” because the Repubs, both in the Senate and in the conservative media, are “trying to stop this investigation in its tracks” by attacking the FBI.


@53 catscatscats> Yep, I saw that too about Grassley and Lady Graham. I’m not surprised about Grassley; I am a little surprised by Graham. He’s gone full-Trump. What reason would they have to see FBI warrants? And does FBI have to provide them? Wouldn’t they be interfering in FBI business? Do they have authority? What did Maddow say?

@55, DYB I will try to post the clip below, it’s only about 6 mins. My take is that the grassley request is unusual and if the FBI complies it will be disruptive to their investigation, revealing info they weren’t ready to disclose, possibly debunking the reason for the probe if it it is solely based on the Steele dossier, which I doubt. She seemed convinced that the Repubs were taking another tack to derail the Russia probe and put an end to it. See if this clip helps, assuming I copied it correctly.

Maybe our messaging problem is we’re too damn positive. Stronger Together and Love Trumps Hate is just so… cheerful. Even tho’ Make America Great Again sounds positive, it has the negative undertone that we are not right now. I just don’t think Dems have ever wanted to get down and wallow in the mud. I like the VoteVets type message that Democrats are for working families and would add Republicans are for Wall Street. They can’t deny they just voted to dismantle Dodd/Frank.

But mainly our messaging can’t get past the media. I agree that a lot of the Dem’s spokespeople need to change course. Some are terrible.

Did anyone throw Jason ChapAss a going away party today? Maybe his buddy Trey. Who’s going to replace him?

Cats, so they want to know the info the FBI had to convince a FISA judge to grant the warrant. I don’t know if it’s all about the dossier, but parts of that dossier have panned out exactly as it said. Plus, Steele was a reliable agent. Now that Susan Rice has agreed to testify in July, we’ll start seeing that ‘unmasking’ pot stirred. It’s just ridiculous to say that she did something wrong by asking for ‘unmasking’ of names of Americans caught scheming with Russian operatives. If the National Security Advisors were not allowed to know, why bother having any intelligence agencies at all? They can’t do anything about it with the WH’s go ahead.

Was today Chafeass’s last day? I don’t know if Gowdy is better or worse or if it’s the same shit.

New WSJ article, late tonight. That idiot Smith, who was looking for Clinton e-mails, in addition to Flynn, also listed Bannon and Conway as campaign contacts. Though both Bannon and Conway deny involvement. (Also, I wish they’d stop saying “Clinton delete” the e-mails. She didn’t sit there in front of a computer deleting 33,000 damned e-mails!)


It does irritate me every time someone says our voting systems were not hacked, since no one has bothered to check. When Jeh Johnson was testifying did anyone ask him if they had bothered to check? (Can’t copy and paste an excerpt for some reason)

And presumably in response to the WSJ article, Benjamin Wittes says “more is coming” tonight.

Here is the article from Lawfare:

The Time I Got Recruited to Collude with the Russians

The money shot is the 5th paragraph from the bottom. The author says that the efforts by Peter Smith were “on behalf of the campaign” from his viewpoint, not of an independent actor.

The author is a computer security expert who is rather assiduously laying a predicate for not having been involved in any of the monkey business leading up to this by the Russians or Guccifer 2.

This thread is really interesting. She details the date of the Peter Smith article is Sept. 7, 2016, the next day is when garden gnome and Beverly Leslie body double, Jeff Sessions meets with Kislyak in Sessions’ office. It is also the day Dolt 45 told a Russian news crew he didn’t think Russia was behind the hack. She also connects some dots I had forgotten. Mueller has subpoenaed documents from “Flynn associates”. Those associates had been hired by the Trump campaign for things like weaponizing influence, but no one at the campaign would say exactly why he had been hired. Hmmmm…

This is getting closer and closer to a point of irrefutable conspiracy.


@65: Interesting read.

I don’t know how many careful analyses I’ve read about How The West Was Lost — I mean how the election was lost — that came to the conclusion trying to flip voters is useless. What wins elections is your side turning out.

Notice that the voter suppression efforts are aimed straight at Dems.

So not only do we have the voters who have to work and have trouble getting to the polls, we’ve got the suppression, and we’ve got the vague messaging on top of it all.

I suspect part of the poor messaging is that the Dems seem to be atrocious at strategy. Exhibit A: they keep trying to flip voters — which doesn’t work — instead of having some rousing tubthumpers that gets their own people out.

Not only do we need messaging, we need to target it to what works.

We do have one massive advantage. Our bumperstickers can be true. They don’t have to be a con job.

And I love the TrumpDontCare slogan!

Bingo — every time the dots are connected a little closer, Kellyanne Conjob has to take another bite out of a big old turd sandwich. Bon appetit Kellyanne.


@68 quixote> You said: “they keep trying to flip voters — which doesn’t work.” Bingo bingo bingo! That’s one of the best observations. Democrats keep trying to flip voters. Republicans don’t do that. They just invigorate their base with things like “gay marriage” and “abortion,” etc. They don’t try to change anyone’s mind to their side. They are just really good in bringing out their own voters. Democrats keep making the mistake of thinking a right-winger will come to the liberal side because it’s good for him. That’s a waste of time, as decades of elections have shown. This is the big reason I think Democrats are wasting their time on those rust-belt white working class coal miners. Let them go. You won’t make them believe the liberal cause. Instead make sure those who are your natural allies come out to vote – and don’t have their votes stolen! They are the majority!!!!!!!!!

The Smith – Conway connection is strong. They keep trying to downplay it. Nope, won’t work. They go waaaaay back.

@68, quixote, thanks. I troubled over Trumpdoesn’tcare or TrumpDontCare. Honestly, I liked TrumpDontCare better, but I kept hearing my 4th grade English teacher.

So if I have your blessing, I will officially change it to TrumpDontCare.

You are 100% correct. We Dems have truth and at least a plurality, if not a majority, on any issue. It is about motivation and that is one of the key byproducts of effective messaging. We aren’t going to flip the pitchfork crowd. Ever. In large measure the pitchfork voting crowd are much like cicadas, they only surface about every 17 years.

Speaking of turn out…


@74> Yep.

Good messaging from Kamala:


Prolix, you’re talking about messaging and you’re worrying about your English teacher? Or me for that matter? Did you read your own post? 😛

Seriously. It’s a bumpersticker. It’s got to be $VARDontCare! 😀

Although maybe I’m not as bad at this stuff as I’m pretty sure I am. Just bumped into an article by Tomlinson, , about speaking Republican. And she says the same thing I’ve been trying to say: don’t talk about poor people. Repubs don’t care. Tell them it’s forty cents out of their personal paychecks and boom. You’ve got ’em. (Well, she puts it differently since she’s too professional to be that contemptuous.)

Josh Marshall located the old NYTimes article that links Smith with Conway’s husband (also David Brock, Linda Tripp, Paula Jones, troopergate and Ken Starr.) I hope Brock has something to say about this.

“someone at home in new jersey” he says, while he was reaching out to the Russians.

We were ahead of the curve. Dan Savage talks about messaging. If you don’t have time to watch the entire clip, start at about 5:30. He specifically talks about messaging at 8:20.

GAgal @57:

“But mainly our messaging can’t get past the media.”


Prolix, you’re always ahead of the curve!

Prolix, I didn’t hate your post. However I do disagree with the premise that the Dems need better messaging.

* All the best messaging in the world won’t do it if the MSM is focusing on emails.
* Dems in 2016 did have good messaging. MSM drowned out most of it. Folks who know how to read thru the BS, like black women, and other people with brains, got the message just fine.
* A certain percentage are racist misogynists who we don’t want to appeal to and never would get anyhow (we’re not greedy and crooked enough).
* I’ve seen graphs already showing the $$$$ which the upper-income people get, and the -$ for the middle class and everyone else with even less money. The simple, powerful graphs are out there — they’re just not getting publicity.
* Voter suppression in the form of Kobach’s slimy program meant at least 600,000 people were NOT able to vote. Usually because the first and last name matched someone else’s, even though the middle names were different. Lots of Latinx and A-As, especially.
* Undoing voter suppression would have given Dems the electoral college by a comfortable margin in 2016.
* Let’s go a) fight voter suppression, and b) get the apathetic folks scared or fired up into voting.

–signed, a former marketing copywriter. (Really.)

@86, Amen, Luna.

Prolix, I LOVE this post. I have been saying this for 16 years, since Bush v. Gore. Gore won the popular vote and the Republican Supreme Court and Florida state government gave it to Bush. That was the first time the Republicans stole an election. They’ve been able to do it every election year since, with the exception of Obama and his mostly disastrous presidency. I talked about it on Monday too. It’s been “Messaging week” at TW!

#86 – Luna, yes, BUT. Point b at the end is key. WHY did Obama somehow get around the fraud at the heart of every Gooper win sine 2000? It was the messaging. “Hope. Change.” And what did that message do?

1) Broke through the media wall.
2) Excited people to turn out, including the Independents and millennials who didn’t vote before.

As someone implied above, the messaging that works is the messaging that acknowledges the frustration that so many tens of millions of people are feeling with the government. So, there is that acknowledgement, and a promise of something better, in “Hope. Change.” It’s terrific branding. It’s vapid and shallow, but it worked.

I adore Hillary, but “Stronger Together” is not good messaging. I never thought she or her campaign were good at it. “LoveTrumpsHate” is actually much better, but, what it tells people is “Elect me and you’ll be standing up for our shared values.” That’s powerful, but if you’re not already energized by Hillary, it’s not going to get you there.

As for Joe and Mika, it’s just like the horrible mass shooting at the Republican softball game. Republicans have ignored every other mass shooting in the country and refused to pass any common-sense gun control laws. All of a sudden, it affects THEM, and Republicans have this whole hand-wringing kumbaya moment for one day. Then, they turn it into a referendum on how people need more guns, and it’s all business as usual.

The same thing happened with Joe and Mika. The madman in the WH was suddenly mean to them, and they suddenly cared. They felt perfectly fine about helping elect a traitorous, mentally unstable con man and sexual predator to the Presidency, until he mentioned Mika’s facelift. What a disgusting pair of hypocrites. They get zero sympathy from me.

83 | Prolix
July 1, 2017 at 2:07 am
Good clip.

The Savage/Maher clip was very interesting, and added more pertinent info to the discussion. I used to think that the Dems should win over the wwc in the red states, but I’m coming around to the idea that its a waste of time and money. Obviously, they should fight gerrymandering and really up their “get out the vote” campaigns. And I really wish they’d get tougher about everything. Taking the high road has gotten us nowhere.

Regarding the messaging, I think you’re all right. Obviously, the media gave far more time to Donald Dump and his screeching harangues. That is a huge problem, their right wing bias. Now I always thought that Hillary gave more than enough info about her plans and that they were amazing. But we’re the tiny minority that gives a shit and takes the time to read them. Apparently the majority needs catchy slogans and creepy commercials to help them decide their vote. So apparently messaging is a necessary nuisance, and “Stronger Together” was lame. I also thought “Hope & Change” was lame, btw, but I’m not the target audience.

Anyway, I think the party needs to get some creative, funny, hard-hitting, newsworthy messaging going, and for godsake, toughen up. Sue anyone and everyone for slander/libel; get in the faces of the idiot media (it sounds rude, but for some reason, people remember that more than politely talking about your platform); and target all of the democrats and maybe non-voters who lean liberal. You might change some reds in the process, who knows, but focus on getting the non-voting libs to the polls.

I think they also need to focus on voter suppression, but that’s another issue.

@88, with all due respect Madamab (I do love you and this site), I don’t think messaging won Obama either the nomination or the GE. He was inexperienced and unqualified for the job, at least in comparison to Hillary and he was untouchable due to his skin color and his backstory. He was another cool dude celebrity, youngish, Oprah-backed, who cared more about his image and his legacy than he did for our country and its people. But the media, the voters and the DNC ate the hype up with a spoon. Didn’t care that he had no substance, no real accomplishments or original thoughts.

Also, didn’t I read somewhere that any Dem would have won after two terms of Bush II? Obama was a very well timed, well positioned anomaly IMHO and his Hope Change message was just more snake oil but in a much prettier, conscience-soothing package. If Hillary had won the nomination with Obama as her VP, how do you think 2008, 2012, 2016 and 2020 would have gone? Do you think she would have done anything about the attacks on the VRA, voter suppression and gerrymandering? What would the Dem party have looked liked? Of course we will never know and the Repubs would have crucified her but I think she would have accomplished a lot more than Obama did as Prez, especially when she had Congress behind her and I think her approval ratings would have been high when she rounded out two terms. Hell, we might have had at least a public option if not single payer on its way by now and Putin in his place.

In the end, Obama got around the GOP fraud because he was a bright shiny object offering his own kind of bread and circuses for the masses and the GOP had nothing shinier. And from whom did the GOP exact its pound of flesh during Obama’s two terms? Hillary. Obama was teflon thanks to the fanboy media.

We were a nation of squirrel watchers in 2008 and we still are. If 45 doesn’t kill us, I hope he at least makes us stronger (together), wiser and better informed.

I agree wholeheartedly about Joe and Mika. You reap what you sow.

I wonder if Obama had been a middle aged woman, if the Hope and Change slogan would have been such a winning strategy. He was groomed by the Dem party from the get-go.

Since we are mainly debating a slogan that would have moved the needle for Hillary in 2016 and made the media pay more attention to her than waiting for baited breath over every tweet and full campaign speech…does anyone have a slogan that might had done the trick?

Prolix’s video at 83 has a good example of how using the slogan, ‘Marriage Equality’ worked better than ‘Gay Marriage’.

Obama ran after eight years of George Bush. Katrina, people catching on about the wars, Wall Street meltdown, 27% approval rating. Hope and Change was not just a slogan. It was pretty much a given. Hillary didn’t have that ‘luxury’ after 8 years of Obama. And the media absolutely slobbered over Obama. Then and now.

Plenty of racists had been simmering about a black man in the White House and with Trump it came to a boil. He was right down their alley.

Stronger Together may not have been an effective slogan, but at least it was true. And inclusive. It’s so hard for me to understand why so many Americans had a problem with that.

‘Stronger together’ not only included Hillary supporters from 2008, but Obama supporters that didn’t vote for her. Also it was for Independents and moderate Republicans and all women.

It wasn’t as snappy, but it was honest. Sad thing is, honest and hardworking seems to have no value in an election. The media wants drama, swooning, brash, and ‘exciting’ to draw attention.

Yikes! Can one of you front pagers take down my post that wasn’t suppose to go up until tomorrow? I’m not finished wit it and I’m having real trouble. Be back shortly!

@96 Never mind! Got it!

GAgal, do you still need to reschedule it for Sunday? It did publish.

@98, Never mind I see you got it fixed.

Oh and btw, Can one of you front pagers you should have said other front pagers because you’re one too you know. LOL

Yes. For Sunday. I put it in the trash but it’s back. But I’m not finished with it.

Just checked and it’s back in draft status so you’re good.

Corey Lewandowski says of Trump (commenting about the Morning Joe tweets) “He’s the Ernest Hemingway of Twitter”.

*eyeballs roll out of my head*

Corey sure hasn’t read much and I doubt he has ever read Hemingway with that comment.

Yeah, this sounds like BigRump all right….

“There is nothing noble in being superior to your fellow men. True nobility lies in being superior to your former self.” – Ernest Hemingway

This guy is good too even though it’s speculation. Until we know more…

@103, nice quote!

Regarding the messaging issue, for those of us who love Hillary, “Stronger Together” is fine. The catchy messaging is needed for those who don’t pay daily attention to politics, as Prolix wrote in his post.

GAgal, looking forward to your post!

GAgal @104, interesting clip!

Assuming I didn’t screw it up again, I have a lazy weekend post scheduled for 1:00 pm tomorrow. If I’m late, y’all know what to do… 🙂

Cats, no worries. At chatblu used to say, we are not an echo chamber. We are all Dems and Hillary fans, but there is room for disagreement in families. 😃

That being said, Obama’s message perfectly matched his moment. Hillary’s didn’t. Because she’s Hillary, she still beat Drumpf by about 3 million votes. Other Dems will need a lot more messaging help in order for us to take back the House in 2018.

@105 & 108, “Stronger Together” is a statement of fact. Coming from Hillary, of course it was fact. “Hope and Change” is aspirational. Of course, coming from Obama it wasn’t fact, but as MB says, “It captured the moment.”

This is the important part — dissecting slogans isn’t. We can analyze the problem by saying — it’s the media, it’s Fox, it’s the Rethugs, but that isn’t going to make it stop. Politics is a full-body contact sport. No one will give us a win. We have to take the win. No one will give us points on our argument, that’s Debate Club.

Although it is not what any of us like, we have to take our exemplary policy, and sublimate it to the politics of winning. The rules have changed and Democrats are still playing by the old rules. Dolt 45 burned the old rule book and then took a crap on the ashes. I’d be satisfied if we just burned ours.

A most excellent new post upstairs.

Comments are closed.

Keep Up

Atrocities Documented:

What the F*ck Just Happened?!

Victories Won:

Your Victories Against Drumpf!

Wanna Be A Widdershin?

Send us a sample post at:

widdershinssubmissions at gmail dot com

Our Frontpagers


I’m ready. Are you?

Blog Archive

June 2017
« May   Jul »

Kellyanne Conway’s new job

Take the kids to work? NO!

That moment when *your* pussy gets grabbed

You go gurl! h/t Adam Joseph

“The” Book

Nice picture of our gal

Time till the Grifter in Chief is Gone

Hopefully soonerJanuary 21st, 2021
22 months to go.

Mueller Time!

Wise Words from Paul Ryan


Only the *best* politicans bought by the NRA

Marching for their lives

Perfect Picture

Rudy: oh shit the pee tape IS real!

Need Reminders?

Never too early to shop for Christmas

“Look this way”

Manafort’s Jail Photo

Indeed who?

Trump spam

IOW Dumb = Happy?

Simply Put


Awrite! Here’s your damned wall

Dems are coming for ya