Monday, December 29, 2008

Groupthink Watch

Yglesias flags an article about how MoveOn membership, mysteriously [per article] or unsurprisingly [per M.Y.] finds its priorities lined up with Obama's. Frankly I find this worrying, esp. the grassroots deprioritizing of gay rights, & would be more than a little put out if we horse-traded gay adoptions etc. for evangelical support on global warming. Obama's choice of Rick Warren suggests a slightly excessive willingness to triangulate on culture; he needs to be checked and balanced from the left and the libertarian center, a task that the general admiration for our Audacious Leader makes harder.

(Just to be clear: I think Obama's priorities are good politics and a wise investment of political capital. But political capital must be spent as well: otherwise, you end up with higher ratings and fewer accomplishments than you should.)


Mobutu said...

My friend Jenny M. turned me on to your blog.

I think whatever horse trading might exist with the evangelicals makes sense from a utilitarian standpoint. Obama's people are good at the numbers, and looking at them, it seems clear that legitimizing gay marriage and adoption is an inevitability as the elderly generation dies out. Meanwhile, Global Warming is a concern that threatens Americans and all peoples of the world, irrespective of political standpoint. While I agree that it's lamentable gay rights have seemingly been put on a back burner, I can see the sense in trusting in a tide of polling certitude on one issue to parlay enthusiasm for a current one that has universal relevance and is not hindered by a specific demographic group that can be written off in nearly a decade.

Perhaps I am being optimistic, though.

Either way, nice blog.

Zed said...

Oh, as I said I think it's a reasonable set of priorities for Obama to have. I just think it's unhealthy for grassroots activists to align their priorities with the government's, because it lets the government triangulate and drift rightwards. Btw, your blog's hilarious.