I've been having this discussion with my Republican Party friends and officials in December. It's about the Occupy movement, big labor and the DNC. It's about a vision I'm sensing of impending doom for the Republicans... I'm starting to see the "we are the 99%" yard signs in our conservative county.
"Are You With the 99%?
Or the 1%???"
Now, I listen to Rush and Hannity when I can in my days - I'm a huge Rush fan but I am getting more and more unhappy with Sean for leaning on the likes of Rove, McCain and the establishment R's to prop up his guest roster. I swear he doesn't get that he's losing the conservatives over this. Anyway, back to my discussions.
The other day Hannity was doing a monologue in response to a Democrat caller. He spent a lot of time trying to explain what the Dems are going to do with the narrative in 2012. The Democrats are going to use "politics of personal destruction" in 2012, because they don't have a record to run on, etc. etc. with Obama as the offender in chief. All true, but my vision is far, far worse for what is awaiting the Republicans in the great debate of 2012. This, I believe, is what the Occupy movement was for all along.
The left didn't miss the lessons of 2010 and the rise of the tea party. Oh, no. In fact, their leaders went to work to create their own counter movement. The rollout of the "OWS" activities in New York were likely planned a year ago. In fact, I would wager my reduced paycheck that there exists a calendar of events and media buys for each week until November 2012. To say that the funding and manpower is there is a vast understatement. If you're not reading LaborUnionReport you should be - see this post as just a taste of what is in store for the Republican Party in 2012: http://www.redstate.com/laborunionreport/2011/11/19/ows-hijacked-occupycongress-next-steps-on-unions-agenda/
The more I dwell on it, the more I am profoundly impressed by the sheer brilliance of the "we are the 99%" tagline. The upside for the left is off the charts awesome - let's consider:
a) There's no way to counter it without being hammered as a defender of the "1%"
b) It provides pseudo-moral cover for almost ANY outlandish behavior to suppress or intimidate
c) It satisfies the herd urges of the blue collar democrats (you know, your neighbors in the 60s/70s who were in a union etc)
d) It satisfies the counter-culture urges of the "protestor class" extant in all our urban centers
e) It forces those on the right to go out of their way to avoid being painted as elitists while attempting to refute it
I'll think of more as I go.
I recently had lunch with our county chairman and in the course of our chicken wraps brought up my concerns that our party is blithely headed into the hurricane without developing a counter-narrative. His helpful rejoinder was to say that he has heard that the Dems plan to have 2 union-paid "volunteers" at every polling place - that the time off has already been negotiated. Umm, thanks I replied and we ate our wraps in silence for a minute.
The Republican Party needs to develop a counter narrative. Like, yesterday. My wife is currently absorbing Frank Luntz and commented that we need a "Let's Roll!" or "Morning In America" sort of narrative that:
a) Is irrepressibly optimistic - no room to naysayers here
b) Completely ignores the "99%" narrative as outdated and divisive
c) Can be used right on down the ballot to insulate every Republican from Occupy attacks
d) That insistently lays out a clear and understandable limited government, pro-trade and bill-of-rights oriented plan
e) Most importantly, includes a compelling call to volunteerism at the polls in 2012.
The Republicans simply don't have the machine to compete with Labor and we're going to need a powerful message to bring people out - where are the tea party rallies anymore, by the way? Have you wondered that? The only rallies I'm seeing are the "protester class" out there being manipulated (and probably enjoying it) much to the satisfaction of the evening news folks.
With the establishment right fighting to suppress conservative values in the presidential primary and insisting on offering up a one-dimensional "Obama is a failed president therefore we deserve a chance" narrative, the party is apparently oblivious to the windup leading to the "we are the 99%" haymaker about to be unleashed from Obama's "organizing for America" machine. And I'm getting worried.
--- Another must-read from LaborUnionReport - a well researched presentation on the threat from the union left and how to counter it: http://www.scribd.com/doc/73380421/Become-A-Force-Multiplier-Five-simple-tasks-for-American-Activists