This Ellis rant has me going and I wanted to keep it handy for the future. The lawyers do not like this decision by the public. The governor does not like his pet projects failing. How dare the public tell the government what to do. If we the public, to do not vote the way the vested interests or their protégés in positions of power want or get swatted down by the public, we are uninformed or worse, dumb. If the people in power or money do not want us to vote down their pet projects, they better get out their voters and not just rely on the paid advertising to coerce us.
We had the chance on election day 2012 to let 7 ill-conceived issues become the law of the land. The people of South Dakota even surprised me with the votes recorded. The worst of the worst went down to defeat. As Lewis responded, my faith has also been restored. These were primarily ALEC model legislation items defeated, excellent!
Now consider the failure of most of the Democrats. It was not a failure of the candidates by and large. It was a failure of the process the Dems have been using for many years. Believe or not, the deficit of registered Dems is not a big deal. The problem is the losing process the Dems have been pursuing. The lack of a long range cohesive vision to present the voters is showing. At some point the Dems have to quit being GOP-Lite and actually stand for something. The voters want and crave some vision to vote for and not just be against everything the MSM ‘reports’ out of Pierre and Washington. The voters want to be guided to the polls and they want to vote for something. How sad it is the Democrats did not even try to get out the vote with carpooling on the reservations. What a waste of great issues and great candidates by not physically supporting them.
So now we political geeks look forward to 2014. Do the Democrats look forward with trepidation or excitement? The party does not want to look to the past for inspiration on how to win in the future. The cool things like social media are not ever going to win elections. Social media is only for keeping your troops going, it will never win new converts. New converts only come by pressing the flesh in person. It has been proven by results for the last 34+ years of Democratic defeats, cool modern media processes do not win in a small vote state like South Dakota. When was the last time you saw a major grassroots, get out the vote effort in South Dakota run by the Democratic State Party office? Maybe 1974, probably 1972. We old-timers who know what it feels like to have a real Democratic Party in action are disgusted by the way the party was taken over by consultants and political hacks who pack up their ditty bags when they lose. They pack up the voter lists, the organization and the money as they leave the state. Look at the wasted effort spent on Obama for America. When they left the state to more fertile pastures, we in South Dakota no longer had any organization to continue the effort to identify, then get out the vote.
Look at the undercurrent of dissatisfaction presented by the voters of South Dakota. These voters could be educated and organized by the Democratic Party for a lot less than the ad buys recently made. These voters will turn out to the polls because the party kept track and helped them feel vested in the process. The SD Dems do not even try. When will they try? The cute saying Will Rogers was fond of “I don’t belong to an organized political party; I am a Democrat” doesn’t mean Democrats should not organize. It means Democrats are a coalition of many groups who are striving to be better. In my experience, Democrats by and large are not Kool-Aid drinkers, but people looking for the positive vision. The state party needs to quit wasting candidates, money and voters playing games.