Here we are, at the bitter end of the caucus madness, and I'm more than a bit peeved at how some of "our" bloggers are characterizing the imminent Iowa Caucuses. I read The Carpetbagger Report every day, and was especially upset by some of the acrimonious responses by commenters today at this post. (You can read my comment at the end of the thread, if you're interested.) Will Rogers once famously said, "I'm not a member of any organized party, I'm a Democrat," and unfortunately, this thread only goes to prove his point once again. Aren't we united in our desire to end this illegal regime? Don't we all want to end the domination by corporate interests, bat-shit crazy wingnuts, asshats, theocrats and the like? Are we united at all? Sometimes I really wonder if we can really mount a movement to take back the truly democratic ideals we all claim to espouse. And when I see folks on "our side" attacking Iowa for being first in the nation, I can only shake my head at what's wrong with these resentful people?
Yeah, we do like the attention for a little while, but we take our responsibility seriously. Much has been made in the MSM about the relatively few people who actually take part in the caucuses, yet they rarely acknowledge that these very people have the best interests of the nation at heart, and do their best to do what they see as best for the country. Of course we put up with the inevitable characterizations as "fly over country," "bumpkins" and "hayseeds" ... we're used to that. That doesn't mean that we are given a greater say in things (I don't think so!) than other states are, when all is said and done.
Yes, the system surely appears to be broken, but it's all we've got at this point ... so do we make lemonade or just walk away and grumble? Do we work harder to make it more inclusive or do we just bitch about it? Well, for one, I will work within what we have established at this point and work for future reforms. That's all we can do.
IF we are allowed to have a real election in 2008 (which in itself is a dubious proposition, given the current power elite), we need to make our voices known loud and strong to oppose the status quo. That's all that any individual can do, and if we do it in a way that is different from the "primary" system, then let us do it our way. If you don't like it, then tune out and STFU. Just remember that when your states report "Primary Returns" we'll be sitting here applauding you for spending 2 minutes in voting booth marking a ballot, remembering how we went out on a cold January night to spend our time off work, trying to send a signal where we think this country should move forward. If you don't like the message, then do what you can where you are to change it. Attacking Iowans as 'elitists' is a futile tactic, because even we don't ascribe that importance to what we do at the caucuses. We're just ordinary folks who turn out to express our best chance choices. If you're locked into regional stereotypes, then I pity you. If resentment so drives your opinions, then do something locally to make the difference where you are.
I would have so much more appreciated not being bothered throughout the holiday season by incessant phone calls, but thanks to states like FL, MI, SC and others, that was not to be. I don't mind so much, but I do resent the Iowa Bashing. We're good people here, and if you can't figure that out by now, then take your beer into the corner, cry crocodile tears and STFU!