Friday, October 22, 2010


The youth vote is being targeted in a big way by the administration again.  The obvious pandering to the various voting blocks in the past week has been pretty blatant.  But the war being waged for youth votes is beyond belief.  (Although the fact that Illinois hand delivered ballots to prisoners comes pretty close - are the cemeteries next?)

Last week, President Obama did a town hall meeting in conjunction with MTV, BET and CMT.  Hopeful participants had to give their political point of view and a headshot to be considered.  He will also be appearing on Mythbusters and The Daily Show.  After all, nothing says 'presidential' like satire.  No doubt the stoners watching the Daily Show will get a kick out of seeing him on the show, but don't expect them to get off their sofas on Nov. 2nd to vote. In the vernacular, they tend to 'flake out' a lot.   As for the Mythbusters episode which will air Dec 8th but was recorded recently, ironically enough the myth has already been busted.  But, true to form, Obama is simply not one to admit when something didn't work, and so it's deja vu all over again. 

Trying to grab their attention on tv isn't enough for this oh so desperate party.  So now they are resorting to actually raiding Cincinatti high schools for (hopefully) voting aged kids to take to the polling place to vote, give them sample ballots for only democrat candidates, and then an ice cream afterwards (at least it's not cigarettes this time) for their contribution to the cause.  Did they get a pat on the head, too?  How about a participation ribbon - we want to make sure everyone feels really good about the choices they made, now don't we? 

Needless to say there is a lawsuit pending on that one, but there are also four more high schools targeted for GOTV efforts next week, too.  Shameless.

There has also been a flurry of campus speeches as well, but none of it seems to be doing the trick.  Attendance at the rallies has been good, but the numbers look bad for the party in power.  Many of their followers are disillusioned by the reality of Hope and Change and are more interested in getting a job than furthering the Pelosi/Obama agenda.  As for me, I'd just like to know how much all this campaigning is going to cost. 

Considering how focused on the halcyon days of the '60's and '70's the party is, they must surely be thinking about the last time the youth were seriously disillusioned.  The Nixon-era ripples must be in the backs of their minds.  Surely they are seeing how things are trending, knowing there is a chance of generational defection.  They have a hardcore base, to be sure, but they have seriously overestimated their numbers.  Only 18% of the electorate self-identify as liberal.  As opposed to 54% conservative and 27% for moderates.  They can't afford to lose any more liberals off the reservation, so they are desperately trying to ride herd on them.  And therein lies the identity politics rub: it's hard to unite groups that are steeped in division.  It is time consuming, if nothing else, having to address each individual group in their own setting.
Until recently, one of the largest democrat voting blocks, both for turnout and reliability, has been women.  That they are slipping there, too, is making them redouble their efforts with the youth voter. And so they are pulling out all the stops to woo back the youth. Even to targeting high school kids and plying them with a field trip/day off and an ice cream.  So what if a few laws are broken in the process?  As our good buddy Saul says, the ends justify the means




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