Using Technology to Deepen Democracy, Using Democracy to Ensure Technology Benefits Us All
Wednesday, June 06, 2012
The Wisconsin recall will definitely fire up the fascists, who now think they have evidence that in a post Citizens-United environment they really can buy their way into control of a secular multicultural nation that prefers equitable outcomes to their heartless plutocratic monotonic police-state, and they have a more plausible narrative hook going in to November than they would otherwise have with the Rmoneybot. I do hope Democrats don't fall into a self-sabotaging self-recriminating despair over this. The righteous intensity of progressive anger against Walker was not matched in needed independents who were split between dislike of Walker and dislike of recalls in principle, the kids were out of school and so many ferocious anti-Walkerites were away for the summer, and the choice of Barrett as his opponent really did turn an insurgency into a re-run to the detriment of the recall narrative: all of this was known, and the recall was always a gamble and never a sure thing, reviled though Walker was and remains (not to mention, and we will soon find out, actually possibly indictable), and the gamble didn't pay off. These things happen. The elevation of Democrat John Lehman to the state senate wrests control of the upper chamber from the Republicans, and though this will be described as a non-event by the GOP, since the senate is in recess for the rest of the year and re-districting will likely return the Republicans to control before it is back in session, the fact is that this really constitutes an indispensable insurance policy ensuring Walker and the Republicans can no longer call special sessions to ram more evil through while the gettin's good. Exit polls still showed strong preferences for President Obama come November, and far from justifying the triumphalist narratives Republicans are spinning from this result (which are predictable, and turnabout is fair play you know, we would certainly have done the same), if anything Wisconsin looks to be moving steadfastly away from being a swing state at all to a solidly Democratic one. That is hard to see with a Recall Hangover, but it'll still be true when Democratic heads stop spinning.