It's real nice to know that Bush is an incompetent fool, and that Republicans are corrupt and authoritarian. It's good to know that torture is wrong, and that violating the Constitution is, ummm, bad.... But it means nothing if you do nothing. And that, alas, describes most Democrats in the Senate.
So what the netroots wants from any candidate is a sign that he or she has guts. That he or she will fight. Nothing else matters without bravery.
That he or she won't just give in, constantly, as Congressional Democrats have all through Bush's reign.
The final thing the blogosphere, the netroots, looks for, is ideology. All other things being equal, they'll tend to prefer a progressive. But for now it's not that important.
First - acknowledge there is a problem.
Second - have the guts to fight it.
Third - realize that doing things the same, but smarter, isn't going to be enough.
Fourth - fight over what "doing things differently" will mean.
The US is a long ways from out of the woods. But the first step is finding leaders who are willing to face hard choices.
And that is the bottom line that the netroots looks for in its candidates. Not ideology - but courage.
Wednesday, July 12, 2006
"What the Netroots Wants"