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In Which Way Backward for the Democratic Party?

April 11, 2005

Open Letter to Howard Dean: Draft John McCain!

As astute Reverse Vote Swappers are doubtless already aware, time itself works differently within the confines of liberalism. On the one hand, it is apparently still too early for liberals to contemplate any strategy other than blind support for Democrats despite 100-plus years of constant failure and betrayal. At the same time, it is never too early to begin the careful process of triangulating for future losses.

Considering the fact that the 2004 election resulted in an Anybody But Bush pandemic amongst progressives which began in mid-2002 and is still not quite over, it is in the best interests of serious, pragmatic Reverse Vote Swappers to consider any measures that could potentially shorten the 2008 election cycle. After all, if history has taught us anything--Reverse Vote Swappers tend to be of the opinion, controversial in progressive circles, that lessons can indeed be learned from the study of history--it is that the election cycle pulls progressives away from real struggle and leaves them stuck in idiotic debates about how a John Kerry occupation of Iraq would be far superior to a George Bush occupation.

With this in mind, ReverseVoteSwap.org is calling upon Fearless Democratic Leader Howard Dean to save progressives from a repeat of Distraction 2004 the only way he can: by drafting right-wing GOP kook John McCain as the Democratic standard-bearer in 2008.

Dear Howard Dean,

For decades, Democratic candidates have tried nearly every conceivable strategy to attract the support of right-wing GOP kooks. Racism, war-mongering, abandoning labor, supporting attacks on gays and lesbians-- all these moves have been tried, yet still Republicans control every part of the US government worth mentioning. "I know, I know," I hear you screaming to yourself, "but what else can we do to emulate this right-wing menace?"

Researchers at a leading think-tank, the Project for a New American Reverse Vote Swap, have succeeded in unlocking one last, overlooked hurdle. Whereas conservative Republicans run openly as Republicans, the very word "Democrat" is a bit of an burden. Despite your party's best efforts to distance itself from the oppressed, there remain certain liberals hell-bent on spreading the illusion that your party is interested in carrying out a progressive agenda.

The solution, then, is simple, Mr. Dean: run a Republican candidate in 2008. In 2004, John Kerry demonstrated his willingness to continue Bush's murderous war, to abandon the environment, to attack gays and lesbians, and basically to bend over backwards to mollify right-wing and corporate interests. He is, however, still a Democrat, and that was perhaps his fatal mistake. Do not make it again, Dr. Dean! In 2008, a split ticket is your only hope for salvation! John McCain can and must run at the top. For veep, we suggest a Democratic unknown from a red state, such as Wyoming. Remember how popular John Edwards was before people knew anything about him? You might also look into the possibility of a vice presidential candidate known simply as "White male middle-aged Evangelical Democrat TBA." We are not sure whether or not this is constitutional, but we suspected that since your lawyers no longer are busy suing Ralph Nader out of his hard-earned ballot lines, some of them could figure this out.

By now, you are likely questioning the generosity of ReverseVoteSwap.org. Why would serious progressives, your sworn enemies, offer such valuable, unsolicited advice? A fair question! In this matter, we have a confluence of interests. You wish to put a populist gloss on your efforts to push the Democratic Party rightward, and we wish to minimize the amount of time wasted by progressives agonizing over the 2008 election. By drafting John McCain today, you will land a decisive blow in the struggle to make the politics of right-wing GOP kookery more central to your party, and you will also save the rest of us the pain of a long, drawn-out primary battle.

Consider your options carefully, and you will doubtless understand the correctness of our position.


Posted by convener at April 11, 2005 12:46 AM