At 0 & 15… Daily Kos Says "It's All About Winning"
In an interview with the Washington Monthly liberal blogger Daily Kos, Marcos Moulitsas, says “It’s all about winning” and shows no remorse for his outrageous comments in June 2003 about the murdered American contractors in Fallujah:
I hate Washington,” says Markos Moulitsas Zuniga… When Moulitsas says Washington, he’s not talking about Bush’s Washington with its pitched partisan camps and pay-to-play ethos. He’s talking about Democratic Washington: the liberal Ivy League mandarins, consultants, and wonks, many of them refugees from the Clinton administration, insiders whom he believes have run the Democratic Party and the progressive movement into the ground, by valuing compromise over confrontation. To him, it’s not that these people have the wrong values or priorities. It’s that they are failures. Moulitsas’s career to this point has been a bet that enough other people share this very precise, nearly sub-articulate animus. I hate Washington.
And yet there he was, just after the 2004 elections, in the ornate Lyndon B. Johnson room of the capitol where he’d been invited to give Senate Democrats a post mortem on what went wrong. The party had just lost its third election in a row, and his audience, a self-flagellatory group at the best of times, was feeling glum and a little bit desperate. Moulitsas told the assembled crowd that they, the establishment, had mismanaged party strategy for too long and that he, Markos, had a better plan.
Senator Harry Reid consults regularly with “part-time sage” Moulitsas (although Kos refutes this):
This record, combined with the sheer vigor and clarity of his online manifestos, has brought Moulitsas, a 34-year-old Californian whom nobody had heard of until three years ago, to the attention of the Democratic establishment, first as a resented adversary and now, increasingly, a kind of part-time sage, an affiliate member. Every third week, Moulitsas has a standing phone call with congressional powerbroker Rep. Rahm Emmanuel (D-Ill.), and he talks regularly with Senate Democratic Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.).
But to Moulitsas, who proclaims that he is not ideological at all, it is all about winning:
…though he can match Michael Moore for shrillness, the most salient thing about Moulitsas’s politics is not where he falls on the left-right spectrum (he’s actually not very far left). It’s his relentless competitiveness, founded not on any particular set of political principles, but on an obsession with tactics —and in particular, with the tactics of a besieged minority, struggling for survival: stand up for your principles, stay united, and never back down from a fight. “They want to make me into the latest Jesse Jackson, but I’m not ideological at all,” Moulitsas told me.
“I’m just all about winning.”
Daily Kos raised more than $500,000 to assist the campaigns of fifteen candidates. None were elected. But, Kos has an explanation for the constant drilling democrats are getting at the polling stations. Kos believes the liberals lose elections because they don’t have an opportunity to be heard:
Republicans, he believed, had a “noise machine,”—a coalition of coordinated advocacy and opinion media outlets that pressured the mainstream media into reporting, and repeating, GOP-friendly spin. “The simplest fact about American politics,” he told me, “is that Republicans have a noise machine and we don’t.”
The orgins of the famous and outrageous “screw them” line repeated so often on Little Green Footballs is discussed during the interview:
In June 2003, after television cameras caught a cheering, thousand-strong mob in Fallujah dragging the charred, dismembered bodies of American contractors through the streets, Moulitsas linked to the reports and said of the contractors: “I feel nothing… Screw them.” The declaration, gleefully seized on by right-wing bloggers, provoked weeks of controversy.
When I asked Moulitsas recently how he felt about the episode, his mouth stretched into a smile: “Vindicated,” he said. The media has recently begun to question the role of American contractors in Iraq, he pointed out, which was the point all along.
But, Kos is not an idealogue!… his “moderate view” on the Fallujah contractors is shared by a majority of Americans!
*Redstate wants Hill staffers to volunteer to give Kos the exposure he deserves on Capital Hill.
* Charles Johnson at Little Green Footballs is asking Democrats to please, please give Kos that lead role in the party that he so richly deserves.
* Ace of Spades is not impressed with the pure uncaring maliciousness of the self-described a-hole.
* Decision ’08 has the highlights and lowlights from the article.