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nellie On January - 17 - 2010

ProjectPOV is the corner of PlanetPOV for members who want to collaborate on projects, such as letters, articles, or blog posts to make available to other members to circulate outside the website. Any PlanetPOV author can participate in creating or joining a project.

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Some possible areas for collaboration:

The Legislative Record

Stories about the accomplishments of the current administration never get enough coverage. The democratic congress has brought important changes to the nation this year, as has the president. The public needs a reminder. As well as a reminder about how much of this kind of legislation is ignored when Republicans are in charge.

There has been so little coverage of what congress is doing that Republicans are getting away with saying that the Democrats can’t get anything accomplished. And this is such an easy talking point to refute. What might be more difficult, but more interesting, is to talk about how some of the new legislation passed this year has affected, or will affect, real people. Those stories are very powerful. And really give us a sense of accomplishment.

2010 Elections

The article I wrote on The World According to GOP was my first stab at documenting the GOP record. Bito brought up a very important next step, which is to look at the legislative record of GOP candidates up for re-election this year. I think we could do the same thing for Democrats—to look at what these people actually accomplish in office, and try to spread the word about this, try to get people to talk about this.

In terms of posting to progressive sites (see Quick Posts), it would be very helpful to have a good grasp on the electoral landscape—the incumbents, challengers, primary challengers, safe races, and potential turnovers—with a good understanding of the players and their records. One thing that helped tank McCain’s bid for the presidency was the rapid exposure of Sarah Palin’s weakness as a candidate, and the poor judgment McCain exhibited in selecting her.

Senate Races
United States Senate elections, 2010
For Senate GOP, 2010 Losses on Top Of the 2008 Losses
Senate seats in play
2010 Senate Races Present Rewards, but Higher Risks for Democrats

Media Review

Cher has done major work on Objective #2—exposing corrosive media. I know we tend to concentrate on HP when we talk about outlets that distort the record and discourage the base, but I think there are other outlets we can look at, such as AP and CNN.

A Rashomon summary and analysis of media headlines—developed so expertly by e’cat—would be a very persuasive aspect of this analysis. We could also compare headlines and content w the various Democratic and GOP talking points to see which sources are likely to be balance or to lend support to one side or the other.

Arianna Huffington recently appeared on Keith Olbermann’s Countdown, trying unsuccessfully to draw a false equivalency between Obama’s terrorism approach and the failed Bush strategies. Keith was having none of it, and kept pressing AH to discuss the idea that the Christmas terror incident may not have been an accident.

What was striking about Huffington’s commentary was not so much how anti-Obama it was, but how inaccurate it was. Please see e’cat’s article, “It’s not just the politics,” for further discussion of HP and accuracy.

Accuracy can be a centerpiece of the media objective rather than negativity or bias, since accuracy is a neutral issue and bias can be perceived as subjective.

As part of this effort, we might want to look at people who are routinely called upon by the media to present the progressive perspective, and comment on whether these pundits are serving the progressive cause. It would also emphasize the constructive aspects of this project to point out people we would like to see have more exposure in the media—for example, Nate Silver of FiveThirtyEight.


If you have good resources for this section that others might find useful, please post them in the comment section and they will be added to this list.

Categories: ProjectPOV

4 Responses so far.

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  1. bitohistory says:

    nellie, I left this in o/t, but I want to put it here also. What do youthink?
    Anyone?
    I think that this is going to be one of the major themes for both the WH and the rest of the Democratic Party! I hope it is! I want it to be emphasized “with Vigah”! (sorry JFK-FDR)this is a good story wwith some good links!

    http://thinkprogress.org/2010/01/24/axelrod-on-filibuster/

    The graph alone speaks volumes. I don’t know how to do the HTML markup for

  2. bitohistory says:

    I will start to do some investigation on the records, but I would like some suggestions on whom to start on with a search. Suggestions anyone? Open seats? Swing states?


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