Tuesday, December 28, 2004


DLC: We Gotta Placate the White-Flighters!

Over at Donkey Rising Ruy Teixeira explains again (here and here) why the DLC's much-touted Exurban Republican Voter Upsurge is largely mythical, and how, if anything, the exurbs nationwide are less Republican than they were under Reagan. The DLC, of course, is pushing the we-gotta-placate-the-exurbs line because they want to argue that we must ignore our base voters: Urban, multi-ethnic, socially AND fiscally liberal men and women. In the Greenberg report on Minnesota's exurbs, which are populated to a large extent by white-flighters from urban areas in and out of the state, we find this little passage:

... Moreover, residents outside of metro areas, in particular, perceive that increased immigration is draining resources from public schools and other services, and that immigrants appear to shun integration. All of this takes place in a partisan environment where politicians appear not to be addressing the state’s most important challenges – the rising cost of health care and the quality of public education. These concerns are strongest in exurban areas, where residents are trying to escape the perceived challenges of urban living – poor public schools, increasing racial and ethnic diversity, crime, and a high tax burden. Here, we find the greatest skepticism about government and the role of immigrants in society, and the greatest reluctance to make a public investment in helping the disadvantaged or in public services more broadly.
"Placating the exurbs" means placating racists who don't want their tax money going to help people whose skin tone is darker than theirs. Even if this really would get us votes, is this something we really want to do?
In Oregon Dems did well both in the urban areas and exurban areas. I think some local 527s (The Oregon Bus Project) played a big role in the success in the suburbs and exurbs.

The DLC can screw itself. They are narrow minded bastards who have been losing elections for us for too long now. Time to kick them out and look at the new progressive philosophies that are emerging in the West.

Sid, from New Frames
This just goes to show something fundemental about the problems facing our country today:

We've never gotten over or past the legacy of the twin sins of racism and slavery in our country's past.

Until we do, we're doomed to perpetual, willfull ignorance of the elephant in the living room no one wants to talk about.

Our country has a racist past. That is something we must confront and face up to and not "pretty over" as some might suggest.

White people enslaved another race of people (the Africans that were brought here against their will) and conquered, brutalized, and marginalized another group of people (the First Nations people, of which I am one) in their 500-year history of contact with this hemisphere.

White people have been in the catbird seat for so long, they (or most of them at least) can't imagine it being any other way or that other races of people are "equal" in their eyes.

We need look no further than the "coverage" in this country's mainstream media of the South Asia tsunami disaster for evidence of this attitude.

Tens, perhaps in the hundreds, of thousands of people are dead in the worst sea disasiter in over a century, caused by the biggest earthquake since the 1964 Alaska earthquake. Because the great majority of those victims are a) brown, and b) Muslim, Buddhist, Hindu, or other, non-Christian faiths, the media here gives the disaster hardly any coverage at all. It's all about the few plucky American tourists who managed, against all odds, to survive this.

I'm sure the Made-for-TV movie scripts about this disaster are being written even as we speak and the survivors are being lined up to be interviewed on "Today" or "Good Morning America" but for me, I find it frankly disgusting that our country can't seem to give a rat's ass if the victims happen to be nonwhite.

To be sure, there are plenty of white people who are quite well enlightened about what's going on (I'm quite sure that Phoenix Woman is in that number), but most people aren't.

That is, until white people become the minority in this country, an eventuality that is coming sooner than most white people realize.
NPR and PBS have actually done a pretty good job. The News Hour last night spent almost the entire hour on the tsunami.

The BBC has done a better job though. On their site they have an ongoing update, almost like a blog.

But, overall, you're right about the bias and racism. If this disaster would have been any place else broadcasters would have interrupted regular programming and done 24/7 coverage, like after 9/11.

Sid from New Frames (http://www.newframs.typepad.com)
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