March 04, 2005

Shove It, Michael Moore!

Tim Dickinson, a former (as of, like, a few weeks ago) editor at Mother Jones, is kicking off his posh new Rolling Stone gig with a piece on Good stuff. Speaking of which, I know there are a lot of calls for mainstream Democrats to disavow and distance themselves from MoveOn, so as to prove their "centrist" bonafides. Or whatever. But this seems silly. Even if a politician—say, Hillary Clinton—did want to distance herself from MoveOn, clearly the best way to do it wouldn't be to insult them herself. That has a "the lady doth protest too much" air about it. No, the smart thing to do would be to (secretly) piss MoveOn off enough so that they distanced themselves from her. That would be more credible.

Same with Michael Moore. John Kerry could've taken the liberal hawk advice and bashed Moore for thinking that pre-Saddam Iraq was a peaceful place and for opposing the 2001 Afghanistan war. But that would've been lame and unconvincing. It would've been much better to get Michael Moore to bash John Kerry for a) thinking Saddam Hussein was a terrible person and b) supporting the invasion of Afghanistan. Rowrrrr! And instant street cred for Kerry.

Now the downside to dragging MoveOn into all this is that I don't think MoveOn has particularly repugnant views on anything. They opposed Iraq but okay. There aren't going to be any more really divisive foreign policy issues of that nature for a while, and I bet MoveOn and, say, Joe Biden (or Peter Beinart) will agree on most substantial matters over the next four years. So what needs to happen? Here: Someone with millions or maybe billions of dollars needs to set up some lefty front group with obviously noxious views on national security that then spends money insulting the Democrats for not adopting those very same noxious views. Roll the ads: "John Kerry, hawk bastard that he is, supports increasing pay for our child-killing Marines." Or whatever. That's how the Democrats start getting tough!
-- Brad Plumer 3:25 AM || ||