Doc Searls’s reflections on the New Hampshire Primary result
I like Doc and have been reading him for years. Here’s a extract from his thoughts about the troubles of Dean and the rise of Kerry:
“Meanwhile, there’s the matter of … the constitutional crisis that should have happened after the last election, but didn’t. Big Media would rather forget about it, but the voters won’t let them.
I was delivered that realization last night when I talked on the phone with another friend. She’s a republican, a historian and an astute political observer. She reads a lot of blogs, but she also watches a lot of TV. After telling me that ABC pretty much “apologized” for tendentious reporting of the “Dean Scream” (I just saw Diane Sawyer do a huge mea culpa on Good Morning America, offering excerpts of the same from CNN and Fox… no useful links on the ABC News site, of course) she offered something of a Unified Field Theory that explained everything from ABC’s apology to Joe Trippi’s resignation to the unexpectedly large support for Kerry by voters primary states who favored Dean in the polls only a few weeks ago….
This is a recall election, she said. Dean isn’t the angry one. If you want anger, look to the voters. There is an enormous resolve out there to recall George W. Bush. As we’ve seen in California, the country likes the straight burboun of direct democracy. The representative system failed in the last presidential election. Regardless of who won, the process was an ugly and unfair mess. Now voters see a barely-elected president with delusions of empire, preparing to keep the country in perpetual war, spending trillions in money the government doesn’t have… Meanwhile the country appears headed toward a one-party state, thanks in large part to gerrymandering that deeply perverts the very principles of representative democracy. A second term for Bush will also guarantee a republican Supreme Court as well.
With all that writing on the wall, neither the voters nor the democratic machine cares as much about who started the recall as they do about the recall itself — just like we saw here in California, where the recall started by Ron Unz was finished by Arnold Schwarzenegger.
This indeed makes the primaries a referendum on electability. These voters are realists. Some of them use the Net, but all of them watch TV. If the TV wants to put Kerry in the ring, then Kerry’s the man, for better or worse.
If the counter-revolution will be televised, these voters say, then the revolution will be televised too. The job now is to get Kerry in condition. Anyway, I kinda nodded along with all of this. It made sense to me. But the Net is still there, connecting voters in more ways than ever. And connecting governance as well. The Net is the people’s medium. It’s where understanding is produced as well as consumed. In the long run the Net, and the people who use it best, will win. I just hope I live to see it.”