For the first time, I’m seeing important folks explicitly agree with what I’ve been saying for years. According to The New York Times:
So the question is: what should such a campaign consist of? I think it’s got to have at least three features, and I’ll list them in order of specificity:
- A catchy name.
- A PR-friendly format.
- Positions and proposals.
The catchy name that’s being bandied around is “America Can Do Better.” Honestly, I think the Democrats Can Do Better: this name is still an indirect attack on Republicans, and that’s going to get folks thinking about Republicans, and we want them to be thinking about Democrats. What would be a catchy name? Maybe “Democrats: A New Hope,” or something. Words to include: Hope, Democracy, Everyone, New, Together. That sort of thing.
PR-Friendly format. I’ve said it before: I think the Contract with America was a brilliant format. A slogan, a 12-point (I think) proposal with one sentence per point, a brochure with a paragraph per point, a book with a chapter per point, and a set of legislative bills. Beautifully constructed. I don’t think the Democrats are likely to improve on this format; they should copy it for themselves, unless there’s a great reason not to do so.
Positions and proposals. Here’s the meat of the thing, and here’s where I’d like the debate to be (unless folks get more interested in the points above). What proposals should go into the contract? I’m thinking there needs to be a mix. These are in no particular order.
-How to deal with poverty
FOREIGN AFFAIRS PROPOSALS:
-Supporting human rights
-Building free and fair trade
-Reducing certain sorts of weaponry (landmines and nukes, e.g.)
There’s the twelve areas I’d focus on. What do y’all think: different areas? What would you put as proposals in these areas?
Republicans, of course, are welcome to participate in this debate. However, I’d appreciate it if your participation were constructive: mocking Democrats for being a bunch of losers, or throwing out obviously conservative (or satirically unproductive) proposals, is not constructive. Think of this as a chance to brainstorm about a winning strategy for the Democratic party.