A girl's gotta have her offline life, too, right? And while lately I've been guilty of indulging of late in a little too much of things apolitical, it always helps to have an ear to the ground.
My friends don't read Daily Kos. They don't really understand why I went to Chicago for a political nerd convention" and they were really surprised when I told them we got profiled in LA CityBeat for this campaign we are working on down in CA-42 for Ron Shepston. And even though they love me, they don't listen to my Political Nexus radio shows.
But you won't believe what I have been hearing. Because it sounds a lot more like drinking liberally than girls' night.
The mood in this country is changing: we all seem to know it and the dems' failure to realize the change has us beating our heads against a wall and calling them out.
Poll after poll shows that the American people will follow us--that they are looking for leadership and are finished with the status quo and more of the same. And they don't trust republicans further than they can throw them.
Yet even I was surprised how much had trickled through to the apolitical general public when some friends and I got together for Girls' Night.
As I said, many of my friends are not very political. Actually, that's an understatement. Some of my friends are not political at all. And yet on the same night I got the question, "what is a Democrat and what is a Republican?" (To be fair, definitions of both have gotten fairly schizophrenic over the last decade) I also got a bunch of comments that will blow your mind. Literally, within 30 minutes the conversation had turned directly to politics--of a form that would make freepers' heads explode. Here's some of what I heard from my apolitical friends that night:
9/11 was a conspiracy and there was a coverup. The towers were blown. It was set up weeks in advance and there were tons of other explosions around the DC area that were never reported because they just threw everything at the wall to make it a big event. One of the girls recommended In Plane Site and everyone said they would download it. (One girl watched it at work the next morning).
The US is on a descent into Fascism, but you can never trust the government anyway, so just know it is bullshit and keep chugging along. There was near universal agreement we were pretty much already there.
It is only a matter of time before our own government starts bombing American cities so they can blame it on an external enemy and solidify control at home. The first 10 minutes of centered on 9/11, the Bush presidency and the corruption of our government.
And of course they had all heard of Larry Craig and his footsie in the bathroom and they all nodded knowingly about that repressed "moral" hypocrisy crowd.
I was shocked. Not only were we talking politics, but this was the type of far out stuff that many of us do not believe belongs on the site and that would probably get you troll rated(and rightly so) for a bunch of fear mongering tinfoil-hat troll baiting. And yet, here were my girls bringing it up and agreeing with each other about how bad it was. But something else came up as well that was very telling: every single one of them brought up some version of the statement, "But the dems are no different and they will do nothing about it."
Senator Reid, I tried as best as I could to explain why you had caved on FISA and why you thought it was ok to make a deal on the last $200 billion Iraq supplemental. And I told them about Daily Kos and the Netroots and what we are fighting for and how we are trying to take back the Democratic party from the inside out. And that even if they weren't happy with Dems, even at their worst they are far less destructive than the Republicans. None of them had heard of the contract fleecing, in Iraq so I told them about the Rolling Stone article The Great Iraq Swindle. They all wanted a copy and made me promise to send it to them.
But they had a hard time believing that the Democratic party was going to do anything for them. And while they won't vote for a Republican, they aren't motivated to vote for a Democrat either.
But while I will talk about politics and economics for hours, they had had enough after about 25 minutes. As I launched into the subprime problem they decided it was just too depressing.
But it really stunned me that the topic came up and held sway for as long as it did, and that my friends were so decidedly negative on the current administration. They may not have had the facts on Iraq spending and signing statements and they didn't once mention Alberto Gonzales, but their minds are made up when it comes to this administration and their opinions of the government. The problem for us is, the jury is still out regarding whether Democrats will provide an answer. And we must do the hard work of educating our friends and family on the details and facts behind what they sense on an emotional and intuitive level.
The next day one of the girls sent me an instant message to tell me she had watched In Plane Site. Another friend sent out a YouTube video for everyone to watch about Larry Craig. I clicked the link--and it was none other than Cenk Uygur of the Young Turks. My friends don't have any clue who he is, but with the new media, they are stumbling all over my political playground and they have no idea. The general public is there, it is coming over to our side and they are even starting to play in our sandbox.
Oh, and my other friend just had her baby. She sent me an email to tell announce his name is "Marcus." It's a start...