March 21, 2007
Et Tu Brutae?
By Professor Emeritus Peter Bagnolo
WHY THE DEMS ARE NOT SUCCESSFUL IN PRESIDENTIAL CAMPAIGNS OF LATE AND WHY LOCALS LOSE WHEN THEY QUITE OBVIUOSLY SHOULD HAVE WON. MORE, WHY WE SHOULD NOT BE SO EAGER TO SEND ANYONE WHO IS NOMINATED TO CONGRESS, REGARDLESS OF PARTY, WITHOUT FIRST MAKING A FEW SIMPLE TESTS OF THE CANDIDATE.
We has been had!
Alas, the movement to stop the war and block the next has gone the way of all such things left to those who wish to rule, the route of betrayal. The greatness of the reluctant candidate, and the reluctant warrior is still the sign of nobility, which we all miss from the Greatest Generation of WWII veterans. MoveOn.org has sent out emails to its members asking them to support the Pelosi betrayal-Her third in just these few months. They have apparently bought into the Neo-con philosophy that we are all as stupid as they think we look. The candidates took our money, our labor, our time, and our hopes and then ignored us. It reminds me of something... what was it? Oh... yes now I remember, the timidity, Wimpiness, the idiocy of whomever was behind the scenes and Minor-minded the 2000 and 2004 Presidential elections. The elections of 2000 and 2004 were a prime example of those who were campaign directors for the Democratic Presidential Candidates, practicing far above their competencies, a rather common practice these days. Now days regardless of education or lack thereof, intellect or lack thereof, experience or lack thereof, common sense or lack thereof, everyone is an expert at things about which they know nothing. Everyone wants to assume leadership, regardless of qualifications or lack thereof. We live in an age of instant gratification and instant expertise. The campaign recently of Tammy Duckworth against the patronizing, truth-twisting campaign of Peter Roskam, displayed the difference between amateur pussycats and unprofessional, ungentlemanly, less than truthful, professionals. Truthfulness aside, Professionals, regardless of morality, usually win.The Duckworth campaign, if it was not run by amateurs, was then run by super-conservative, anal-retentive, dispassionate, apparently less than qualified, over-under-achievers, who closely guarded their candidate from receiving winning information from professional winners. They were a perfect example of why a candidate should thank his/her friends and keep them out of the campaign unless they are proven winners... hers were, quite obviously, by the outcome, if not the management of the campaign, not. People practicing above their competency, again ended up where their lack of knowledge always ends up and belongs, losing. Duckworth was an ideal candidate. A courageous, intelligent, veteran, whose disability did not make her bitter, but whose handlers, should have, for they would rather hug their positions at the top of a house of cards, than step aside and let those who know how to win show them how to win. There are always those who prefer in a race, to be an unqualified Admiral, in-charge, commanding a losing, sinking ship, than a follower of a knowledgeable Admiral whose ship floats and races to victory. Lead and sink rather than follow and win, an old story. Her campaign direction, unfortunately for her and for those of us, who live in her district, closely mirrored that of the Democratic Presidential campaign Direction of 2000 and 2004, mixed messaged, timid, weak and amateurish. It was a poor representation of a woman of courage and fortitude and obvious strength. We needed her, but she was shipwrecked before she was launched. I predicted her fate as soon as I saw the way in which she was being positioned and as soon as I had experienced the impossibility of trying to reach her to set her on the winning path.
Next time the Democrats want to try to win in a Republican area, they should contact those who know how to win, instead of those whose only interest is in being the campaign Mis-Directors. There is a reason why the Democrats cannot win often in my county and it has less to do with the wealth and conservatism of the area than of the lack of understanding how to win in such an environment. I have run in my lifetime only two elections. In 1980 (and 1984) in Conservative, middle class, Republican, community, which went almost 3-1 for R. Reagan, who swept the nation and the state of Illinois with few exceptions. I took a Democratic Candidate for Mayor, won the mayoral seat, and reversed a 7-1 Republican Aldermanic advantage in the face of the Reagan Tornado. There has never been a Republican majority since in that city. The Democrats learned well how to win. I did not run a conventional campaign, but I got even the publisher of the local Republican Newspaper to support my candidates. The favorites all lost in a slaughter. I moved out of that community a few years later and retired from active political campaign direction to write. I came from a long line of political and union campaign winners, but only took up the fight out of frustration with the status quo in that community. We ran a clean campaign against those who did not, but we let no advantage slip by. We answered every challenge with a stronger one and our strategy never wavered, but our tactics were immediate and overwhelmingly convincing, and novelty of novelties, we were honest and truthful, We won by about 20%, against a Republican machine that swept the surrounding suburbs. Had the Democrats taken each of the suggestions in 2000 and 2004, which I and my limited staff, and I am sure, many others sent them, they would have won, but the Wimpiness they displayed, the almost unprecedented lack of knowledge, of competency, of courage, or foresight, of adroitness, of prophetic vision, and their lack of reflexive, immediacy in tactics, that had they won, not only would I have lost my last minute, friendly lunch bets against them, but I would have been astounded. After the election, they displayed the same poor vision. They showed cowardice, Wimpiness, lack of foresight even in the face of all the predictions we made to them about what would follow if they allowed the Iraq attack, if they passed the Patriot Act, and the Military Commissions Act of 2006, was scary. Some even admitted that they signed those bills without even reading them and one admitted they seldom read bills on which they voted, that alone proves that fools and brigands were elected even among those we supported. They are pissing away our sacred heritage for MONEY and prestige? The lack of courage and foresight, the timidity proved no accident, or anomaly, they are showing the same timidity again. Whomever is planning their strategy is a fool or perhaps worse, a mole from the Right, or a minion of the god worshipped by the Bushites, Satan, either one of those or the god of impotency and incompetence, Elmo, the Diminutive, Or Teeno, The Tiny. The Republicans supported, corrupt, evil, insensitive, avaristic, people who won, we supported amateurs, who hired amateurs to run their campaigns, who lost, and we also elected those whose word is quite obviously not their bond, who have ignored our will. One clue as to whether or not you should donate or support a candidate or an organization is whether they respond to your concerns. Do they have a contact button on their website which includes an email address to the actual candidate, or the executive, or is it just a site which orders you to write letters to candidates and asks for money? I no longer do anything for people I cannot speak to, and guess whom others and I, have been unable to speak to in Illinois, go ahead, guess? Guess whose handlers are now showing anal retentiveness? Who are fending off new ideas? Then guess who I wanted to support but after encountering his "Handlers," am not, in Illinois? The attitude of the "handlers" already tells me what kind of president we would have if we supported him. Take, please, this advice, grab the reins and call your own shots, control your own destiny. Don't buy anything from a website that has no contact phone numbers and email addresses and don't donate to any website that has no contact phone numbers and email addresses, and don't support any candidates that do not return your calls or emails, or who rudely refuse to respond to questions or ideas. We need to be more selective and if we see candidates whose campaign staffs are obviously without a clue, we need to look elsewhere for candidates to support. Even as I punched the Duckworth button I knew it was a vote wasted, as I fought to help Gore and Kerry the same dread prophetic reality dawned upon me. We were fighting two battles in each election 2000 and two 2004, one against the Hun, and the other against the "Handlers" of our candidates. Maybe next time we should all vote for the Third Party candidate, and then maybe they would get that message... on second thought, maybe they would not. What do you think?
Professor Bagnolo has majored in: Cultural Anthropology, Architectural design, painting, creative writing. As a child prodigy, abed with polio for almost two years, he was offered an opportunity to skip three grades at age 8.
Later He was a recipient of an Art Institute scholarship at age 11. In college he won a Ford Foundation Fellowship in Anthropology, architecture and in Painting as well as a merit scholarship in art, and was appointed to a Graduate Research Assistant position. He holds a triple bachelor's degree in Painting and Drawing, Anthropology, Architectural Design Advertising. MA's in Cultural Anthro, Illustration and more.
After being tenured he taught; architecture, anthropology, advertising, painting and drawing, entrepreneuring and Creative Profit Making. He produced a star-studded Music festival, had a radio talk show in Chicago, and cable TV show. Now, an early retiree from Teaching, he paints, writes, and pursues other ventures.
The above bio harvested from the comments of Deans, colleagues, students, clients and collector's.