How To Lose Your Next Fav Political Campaign
A step-by-step guide to getting your ass kicked (again).
This is part 1 of a 3-part blog. This is the easy part. Part 2 will examine the voter registration numbers for CA-04, and Part 3 will share some ideas on how you can win your next fav political campaign.
If you haven’t figured it out by now, I don’t know what to say. Learning how to get your ass kicked in your next favorite political campaign is as easy as looking at the many zombies of campaigns past sinking their dirty infected teeth into young, healthy campaigns, and stating the obvious:
Zombies are bad for us.
But, maybe I’m oversimplifying. Let me break it down into ten totally non-sarcastic steps:
Step 1: Sit on your hands and wait for your party leaders who have been at the helm for a million-billion years to decide when it’s time to get busy with stuff.
Step 2: As you make your way into the primary, poo-poo all the exciting and different candidates, and focus your time and money on the person you think is the “safest” given the demographics of your district. That’s the person who meets some imaginary mathematical check-boxes inside your brain, and has the most appeal for those fictional people we call “Moderates.”
Step 2.1: Pick an exciting candidate, and watch the party spend the months leading into the election rebranding that person, making them palatable to those imaginary moderates.
Step 2.2: Pick an exciting candidate, but then lean back in relief and comfort as you watch your local Democratic Party pick someone else on your behalf to win the primary through their central Democratic committees. (Note, this is what always happens in every single primary, and who they pick is always determined by ONE thing: Whoever has raised the most money.)
Step 3: Help your local Democratic club out by giving them some money to hand over to a highly-regarded (expensive) polling firm. The money will be used to survey people in your district so the party leaders can figure out what the real issues are because it can’t be as obvious as what you already know: Healthcare, jobs, dead trees, water, education... (This list is specific to CA-04, but every district has a short list of well-known issues.)
Step 4: Read this uber-retro, 2002-looking email from the DCCC about a “MASSIVE loss” and send them a big wad of cash from your retirement. Wait just a few hours, then read this PANICKED follow-up email from Nancy Pelosi who is literally begging for money. Buy yourself some hope by sending the DCCC an even bigger wad of cash from your retirement.
Step 5: Repeat steps 3 and 4 every fucking day, forever, into infinity because long after your dead and buried, these godforsaken emails will continue to flood the Interwebs in search of your email inbox.
Step 6: Bite on the GOP’s (Russia’s) manufactured and mass-produced bait, and respond to your son-in-law’s, father’s, neighbor who shared a Breitbart article on Facebook that he got from his good friend Dave in Kansas (Dimitri in Moscow). Spend HOURS AND HOURS doing research online and post a carefully-worded, 18-page manifesto that soundly refutes the article using data and real facts. Get called a “snowflake.” Change zero minds.
Step 7: Nod in agreement with the strategy of framing your candidate’s campaign as a referendum on the Trump administration. Relish the sweet, sweet taste of Schadenfreude as the president repeatedly embarrasses the GOP with a relentless stream of incoherent late-night tweets. Rub the noses of your conservative friends in his excrement.
Step 8: Delight in satisfaction at the illusory 1.763952% gain in some poll after a crazy-expensive ad buy paid-out to iHeartRadio who, in turn, sends that big pile of cash over to their besties in the GOP. ❤️️ It’s like “The Circle of Life” meets “The Trials of Life” all framed in an episode of “Mutual of Omaha’s Wild Kingdom.”
Step 9: Walk over to check the mail along with your pooch and, joy of joys, discover a giant card stock monolith with your gal’s photo on there, and all kinds of generic bullet points about how awesome she is. (You know it’s bad, but you figure the mailer isn’t for you. It’s for those people.) Try not to think about all the paper and chemicals used to print the thing, or how much CO2 was released to get it to your mailbox. Seconds after being extracted from your mailbox, you are relieved to discover a timely, green-minded opportunity for reuse! ♻ 🐩 💩 🌎
Step 10: Continue to believe that the only way your gal can win the election is to try and change people’s minds, and “GOTV!” Participate in phone banking, calling strangers and reading a script some paid party strategist wrote for you. Spend days walking around someone else’s neighborhood, knocking on the doors of strangers, and engaging in awkward conversations about something very personal and rarely talked about, even with friends and neighbors.
That’s pretty much it. When she gets her ass kicked in the general, you will cry and lament, and you will wonder “What more could we have done??” Experts will tell you that her campaign needed more money. That’s a hot, steamy load, of course. Of the $60 MILLION spent in the GA-06 race, Ossoff had a nearly $8M advantage. The fact is, NO AMOUNT OF MONEY WOULD HAVE EVER PUT OSSOFF OVER THE TOP. Spending more money on the same, old, crappy playbook gets us the same, old, crappy result. Every. Single. Time.
You want to get money out of politics? Here’s a start… get YOUR money out of politics.
In my next post, I take a hard look at the voter registration numbers to help us better understand what we’re up against. Following that, my third post in this series will share some ideas on how we can avoid getting infected by zombies.