How do we even begin?
Dowd is clearly not dumb, but this tweet surely ranks among the dumbest in the history of ever. Especially coming from a former speech writer and campaign guru.
Here are seven questions I have for Mr. Dowd:
1. Why the flippancy?
I know Twitter’s hard.
Only 140 characters available to convey whatever is on your mind.
Here’s a rule of thumb: If you think you’ve captured the entirety of a complex subject in a single, cute tweet, you’re not being profound.
You’re being trite.
Besides that, to me, this your tweet was insulting.
2. Why the self-righteous posturing?
The tweet reminds me of Great Thoughts on Bumper Stickers.
You know the kind.
- “It will be a great day when the schools get all the money they needed and the Air Force had to have a bake sale to buy a bomber.”
- “COEXIST” (cleverly spelled out with each religion’s appropriate symbols)
- “What’s so funny about Peace, Love and Understanding?”
How do you manage to ignore long-standing, intricate controversy surrounding even the NEED for a minimum wage, or its impact on the economy? All of which you’re in a position to be thoroughly familiar with?
3. What is the message?
Is it that only shaming Congress will cause it to do what is so obviously the right thing to do?
Is it that Congress is doing such a poor job we need to punish it?
Or that Congress is unproductive and needs some incentives?
4. Why the assumption there’s common ground here?
Every one of these messages is based on a very specific—and biased—point of view.
Heck, MY point of view is just as biased.
Just as is the point of view of every person who read your tweet. Or any tweet.
I think there’s enough genuine, overlooked, common ground, we don’t need to universalize our own viewpoint and shame the slackers who apparently only disagree with us because they’re stupid, or misled, or nefarious in their motives.
We disagree in this country either in favor of or against the minimum wage.
And we all have good enough reasons that we need to begin showing respect for those who differ.
5. Who gives the Congresspeople their performance reviews?
Silly me, I always thought voters did that.
Or do you mean tips? Something we already do, by the way.
Only we call them bribes.
6. How do you define performance?
Just doing something? Even if it makes things worse? (What happens when they’re not even aiming at the target they claim they’re trying to hit?)
Number of laws passed compared with previous sessions of Congress?
Percentage of Progressive/Democratic Party agenda passed?
7. Have you ever been an actual conservative?
If you were, you’ve gone native.
This is what’s scary to me in today’s political environment.
People like Dowd pose as Republicans or even conservatives—depending on what it is Democrats/progressives/media most need them to be in order to continue the meme of conservative (or Republican) extremism, intransigence, or internal division.
It’s time for folks to start being honest about who they really are.
And who they speak for.