“Today we completed one pledge and we began another," says Rep. Marsha Blackburn of Tennessee: "Many months ago House Republicans committed and pledged to listen to Americans all across this country… We kept that pledge, and it allows us to make another. The Pledge to America starts with the preamble that reminds us that every American citizen is endowed with certain rights from their creator. When our government charts a course that endangers those rights, the people have the right to demand a new agenda from their government."
"This election is more and more shaping up into a contest between the Exhausted and the Enraged," writes Northeast Corridor Conservative Peggy Noonan, once again almost grasping the spirit that animates this Army of Davids. As we wrote last summer, "Tea Party to Peggy Noonan: It's not rage, but disgust!" This time, the former Reagan speechwriter and author of the transcendent "thousand points of light" decided to listen instead of pontificate. Her telephone conversation with Rep. Marsha Blackburn of Tennessee is a revelation:
But Rep. Marsha Blackburn of Tennessee suggests I have the wrong word for the Republican base. The word, she says, is not enraged but "livid" …
There are two major developments, she says, that are new this year and insufficiently noted, but they're going to shape election outcomes in 2010 and beyond.
"The question is which is to be master," as we blogged the other day, and Blackburn is taking no prisoners:
First, Washington is being revealed in a new way.
The American people now know, "with real sophistication," everything that happens in the capital. "I find a much more knowledgeable electorate, and it is a real-time response," Ms. Blackburn says. "We hear about it even as the vote is taking place" …
The Internet isn't just a tool for organization and fund-raising. It has given citizens access to information they never had before. "The more they know," Ms. Blackburn observes, "the less they like Washington."
It's that effervescent disintermediation of the powers that be via the internet that we are forever flogging here. Blackburn closes in for the kill:
Second is the rise of women as a force. They "are the drivers in this election cycle," Ms. Blackburn says. "Something is going on." At tea party events the past 18 months, she started to notice "60% of the crowd is women."
She tells of a political rally that drew thousands in Nashville, at the State Capitol plaza. She had brought her year-old grandson. When the mic was handed to her, she was holding him. "I said, 'How many of you are grandmothers?' The hands! That was the moment I realized that the majority of the people at the political events now are women. I saw this in town halls in '09 — it was women showing up at my listening events, it was women talking about health care."
Blackburn casts the "rise of women as a force" in terms of "the Rage of the Bill-Paying Moms," and she's right as far as what Noonan calls "a change in national thinking regarding the role of the individual and the government." But don't discount what may be an even more fundamental dynamic at play: "Girls just wanna have fun."
Update: Instalanche! Thanks for the spelling correction, Professor. :D
Message To Peggy Noonan: Girls Just Want To Have Fun.
Update II: Michelle Malkin "Buzzworthy" link! They just want to, that's all!
Update III: Cubachi links:
SISU: Must read.
Update IV: James Nicholas of What the …?! links:
Boy, do they ever. And few of 'em have more fun than Sissy Willis, whose blog SISU is about as fun as it gets here in blog land. Her latest post is a "once more into the breach" attempt to communicate with Ms. Peggy Noonan, and by my stars, she and candidate Marsha Blackburn of Tenessee seem to have succeeded.