And so we come to the conclusion of the 2012 election. In nearly every state the result was as good as could be hoped for, and whilst democrats and women heaved heavy sighs of relief, the Right were left crying into their beer. The roots of this defeat lay in a multitude of small actions by Democratic party staffers, alongside the sweeping speeches and grand gestures by the leaders of the Campaign.
However if we look at the other side, we can see a variety of things that went tragically wrong. The party picked the wrong candidate, (Not that I’m saying that there was a right candidate). They concentrated too much on Advertising rather than their ground game. The coalition they built was too narrow. They alienated much of the press and media. Their new and shiny computerised GOTV failed spectacularly, leaving their election day staff confused and disconnected. None of which on their own was particularly a campaign killer, but put together all added up to failure with a capital F.
Of these causes several can be traced back to the incestuous relationship between the Republican party and the Murdoch organisation through its Fox News arm. For the last ten years this station has been seen as the voice of the party. Not directly like the Soviet Communist parties Pravda or Isvestia, but the place where the party higher ups had to be seen, and where message and attitude issued from. Presenting news with a conservative slant and message might seem superficially attractive in that it keeps the party foot soldiers on line and on message, but it is a mental trap. By viewing skewed information, the party faithful gradually became disconnected with the facts as they were on the ground. Their logical structures as to what the public in general wanted and would accept became detached from what the public actually would accept, and hence the election result in the end came as a terrible surprise. When all the information you are seeing is selectively chosen from a political point of view, you become to believe that everyone thinks like that. Your ability to filter out confirmation bias weakens, and pretty soon you find yourself heading down a blind alley
If all of your party workers are working from this information poor background, then they will chose a candidate who fits their information poor mind-set,, not someone who might effectively appeal to the wider population. To shore up your vote with the party faithful and enthuse them for the campaign ahead you then might as the candidate feel pressurised to pick a vice presidential candidate who panders to your supporters worst Economic insanity, forcing the party even further away from the chance to be elected. In any modern startegy, it's the low information competitor who is in trouble, and through Fox, the party is intentionally chosing to be that low information competitor.
As all of your supporters are getting their message mainly from a single TV channel, then your message will be tailored to that channels perceived bias and that will result in even more people excluded from that channels marketing demographic thinking that your party isn’t for them. Which shores up your oppositions vote, and strengthening their coalition of voters.
All of these things are a continuous process, the Republican coalition will gradually keep spalling off chunks of voters as they realise that they are part of the excluded other, while those inside the boundary become more acidic at the rest of the public.
Look at the Republican Party as Smeagol, and with Fox news as its ring, it’s well on the way to becoming an American Golum. Now is their opportunity to throw the ring into the fiery volcano.
Now over the other side of the Atlantic News International is in serious trouble, as has been documented a variety of people here http://www.dailykos.com/... a variety of Murdoch attached journalists are facing court dates for a selection of criminal activities, covering the hacking of peoples phones, and corruption and bribery, amongst other things. If you have not been following this you amy not realise that one of the things that has happened during this long drawn out process is that the Metropolitan police have handed over a cache of 30,000 documents to the FBI, and there are suggestions of action against Newscorp, Fox news owner under the Foreign corrupt practices act.
During the last year as the case has wound towards court dates there have been numerous people questioning why the DOJ has yet to appear to do anything. Generally answered by people saying it would be infeasible and look politically motivated to do this in the lead-up to a presidential election, and it could spectacularly backfire. However that excuse for inaction is now gone.
Now is the opportunity for the DOJ to act. and now is the opportunity for the Republican party to detach its remora and start looking at the real world. If not then a spiral towards further irrelevance is sure to happen as more of its positions are filled with people with a Fox News mindset, less and less in tune with the rest of the voting public. And as that happens the chance of separation become smaller and smaller as people inside the party more and more consider the Fox/republican way as the only way it has ever or should ever be.
If they have any sense then the senior members of the republican party will, as the DOJ acts, not scream and cry as their Fox security blanket is removed, but rather see this as an opportunity to move the party back towards the mainstream. Major advertisers may even do the party a favour by killing the station off as they see this downhill momentum commence, with the excuse of the on-going scandal as a reason to quit funding the station. Without this action on their part we can only see them throwing further billions away on increasingly desperate attempts to get your latest racist homophobe friendly lunatic into the white house every four years.
The Senior members of the party must recognise that the life raft they grabbed in Fox news at the end of the electoral good times, is in fact an anvil. It's time for them to let go and let it and Rupert Murdoch, Roger Ailes and the crowd of vacuous shills who grace its sofas and sets sink without a trace.