Unusual new Wes Clark Video at YouTube

There is a new Wes Clark video that is very unusual at YouTube. Instead of talking about a candidate, in this case Wes Clark, it speaks directly to Wes Clark. I hope this really does go viral. I feel it has a message that Wes Clark needs to hear.

The full channel name is YouTube/Polcampaign. There is only one video there at least for the moment. I will be putting this on my blogs. I hope other blog owners and members do the same.

This is not a 100% declaration of support for a Clark candidacy on my part. While most know I was heavily involved in the Draft and Campaign, I’m trying to keep an Open Mind for a couple of our declared candidates as they make their case. But I want to listen to Wes Clark too. I firmly believe he will elevate the campaign once in the game. And I think this video may help in that effort.

If Wes Clark again gets a firm demonstration of his built-in support perhaps it will impact his decision making. While most of us expect him to run, based on his own comments, I believe this is a time to demonstrate his support. Circulating this video is one easy way to make the support obvious..and elevate the campaign discussion at the same time!

‘The New Primaries’…a Disaster in the Making

[Originally published at The Political Dogfight as part one of four this is a slightly edited version.]

I seriously question the value of the new Primary System developed by the DNC then jumped on by other opportunistic states. February 5, 2008 looms large as a result of these changes.

David Brooks recently had a column about the advice he had for Republican candidates. It was his contention that all the primaries on Feb. 5, 2008 wouldn’t be the decisive ones. He still thought the traditional first three primaries would set the media tone. And he thought the Media tone would set the race on the first Tuesday of Feb.

While I don’t agree that the first three primaries will decide the race, and I don’t agree with Brooks in general, I think he is absolutely right about a slightly different topic: Media Tone

Think of the situation today as seen in the daily papers and on the news programs! According to them there are only 3 real candidates in the race: Senator Clinton, Senator Obama and John Edwards…and John Edwards is coming in a weak third in terms of media coverage. (Or his was until the unfortunate announcement of his wife’s recurring health issues.]

This issue of Media Tone/Media Noise is the real problem.

A few candidates are sucking the Media Oxygen out of the atmosphere and leaving other truly qualified candidates without the ‘free’ media (news) that they need to become more widely known. If this is happening to John Edwards think of the others.

Think of Joe Biden or Chris Dodd. Whether they are your favorites or not, they deserve to be heard and considered. Each of them has substantive experience and each is just as substantive as Hillary Clinton, Obama and John Edwards.

  (More on this topic another time: Rhetoric vs Substance and Goverance in the Election of 2008. )

Will candidates that aren’t getting the ‘free’ media of the Clinton’s etc., have even a fighting chance in 2008? Will they be able to raise the $25-$40Million they need by the fall? If they can’t will this silence voices that should be heard?

I think that forshortening the race does the country and the party a diservice. Now we have an Invisible Primary already in progress with people being labeled winners and losers….and it’s all in the media’s programming…..it’s pure Media Noise.

Since it has no actual voting today, this Primary, since it’s all in the Media and nowhere else, I call ‘The Invisible Primary’. And that Invisible Primary is in full swing.

I despair that we will again nominate people who seem great in short primary seasons,(Gore who was annointed and Kerry who came from nowhere in the most unusual Primary in memory), and then we saw they didn’t have an Authentic voice on the campaign trail! They didn’t know how to remove the Political Mask.

I believe that the American people hunger for an Authentic Voice, not the politicians mask that so many wear and use to speak. My desired outcome would be to have a nominee with an Authentic voice that is backed by large scale experience and augmented by roadmaps to tangible goals with benchmarks built in to those roadmaps.

Rhetoric, however seductive, will not win. Fundraising shouldn’t be a qualifier either for the nominee.

  This is Part 1 of more to come on ‘The Invisible Primary’. Stay tuned for more parts and metrics on the numerics of February 5, 2008.

LA-02: The Re-Election of Jefferson Was Predictable

Today we know that Karen Carter, by all accounts a good candidate, lost against ‘nearly indicted’ Congressman Jefferson.  And throughout the Blogsphere people with no experience in Louisana politics are stunned.

‘How could a man with $90,000 in his freezer, with staffers who have plead guilty still get elected?” Personally, I thought he would win all along. That prediction was based on my experience in LA-1.

Louisiana, based on my consulting with Stacey Tallitsch, a defeated candidate for LA-1 and a terribly good man, is the most unusual political place in America. One simple statistic will bear out my comment:

  After seeing their brothers and sisters die in Katrina and Rita,
  After seeing their city nearly destroyed,
  After the maladministration of help at State as well as Federal levels… 

In the election of 2006 not one incumbent in the State House or in Congress was replaced. Every single one that was in office when the disasterous decisions where made is still there enjoying the perks of office!

Do I understand this statistic? No. Even with nearly 40 of political experience I don’t get it! I can only say that I don’t have the live-in-New-Orleans experience to help me understand.

I hope we have some New Orleans citizens that can bluntly help us understand.  It is a mystery to me. Frankly, when I took on Stacey Tallitsch as a client I assumed this would be a cake walk! Who would keep the incumbents in office after such a tragedy? I was wrong.

The incumbent won with 88% of the vote and announced his run for Governor less than a week later. So LA-1 won’t really have a Congressman…only a candidate for higher office. And Stacey has a big campaign debt. I never would have guessed at the outcome.

And now Congressman Jefferson continues on his path.

I hope someone from NOLA can bring some light to all these things that are so hard for the rest of us to understand.

Let’s Help the Candidates That Gave it All and Didn’t Make It!

We, the grassroots, asked for a full slate of races for the 2006 cycle. In their enthusiasm a bunch of candidates jumped into races all over the US without the preparation that normally would precede such an effort.

Right now the average Congressional Race costs around $800,000 and our people raised, most of them….the real Grassrooters, a tiny fraction of that amount.

They fought hard. In some cases they came close even on the tiniest of budgets. Most of the candidates that came into the War….and that’s what a campaign is…a War…lost. Remember we only picked up 28 seats with a couple still in contest.

A bunch of these candidates ended their campaigns in debt. Some of them more serious than others. Since I had one candidate in the race I know his numbers and they aren’t pretty. I know two more than are more modest.

But the point is that these people came into the Field because we asked them to do just that…they came to the War and fought for our ideals and theirs.

Now I suggest we need to help them with their campaign debt. Many intend to make a run next time and it’s really hard to get your feet on the ground when you are still making payments on your previous campaign.

We can’t rely on PAC’s or Move On or anyone but ourselves.

I propose that the candidates with debt let me know that reality and then we can build an ActBlue page for the entire list. Like the Peace Team, a person could make a donation to the entire list which is divided evenly or directly to one or more individually.

But I think we owe it to these brave souls to at least try to help them retire this debt.

I would value communication from candidates at this address and thoughts from all on the idea.