This column was considered unfit to run in the Fillmore County Journal as a commentary article for the 11/5/18 issue.
I think I’ve made it pretty clear that I’m not too happy with the top brass in the Democratic party not choosing to run on a revolutionary economic platform that puts food on your table, jobs in your community, safe water in your tap, no-worry medical care, and so on… but I’ve got to say I am absolutely baffled by the strategy being taken by the Republicans. Not at the national level, of course, that’s stuff isn’t exactly hard to figure out, but the state and local approach by the GOP is just plain flabbergasting.
Flabbergasting? Does that count? Spell check says yes, so…
Jeff Johnson, what are you doing? Do you even know? Does your campaign? Both your website and signs I’ve seen around (and we’ll get to that later) claim that a vote for you is to “overthrow the status quo,” but last time I checked the GOP controls both the Minnesota House and Senate, so wouldn’t overthrowing the way things are result in DFL majorities in Congress? Additionally, I haven’t seen too many DFLers out there putting out particularly radical proposals, so what exactly are you proposing to overthrow? As if this wasn’t confusing enough, I later saw an online ad in the local paper saying, and I quote “Tim Walz wants to radically change Minnesota.” Mr. Johnson, wouldn’t overthrowing the status quo actually BE radical change? Is your campaign threatening to overthrow the radicals, who aren’t in power, and, um… start a revolution by keeping everything exactly the same?
Because let me tell you, Mr. Johnson, what overthrowing the status quo would really be: massive taxes on the wealthy, universal healthcare, guaranteed jobs, homes and income for everyone, and local co-ops as far as the eye can see where once stood mega-corporations… is that what the GOP wants? If you’re looking to overthrow the status quo, Jeff Johnson, I suggest you try socialism, because that’s the opposite of what we have now. Because that’s what your sign seems to say… and that sign does happen to be red, the color of socialism… what exactly is up your sleeve, Jeff Johnson?
And speaking of signs… you guys at the GOP really need to re-think your optics. I recently drove to the cities for work, and there was at least a 1:5 ratio of DFL to GOP signs on massive, empty pieces of land, horse farms, or McMansions with four or five new cars out front… none of which are places a guy like me making 30k a year is able to even rent. If you’re looking to sell yourself as the party of the little guy, this ain’t a good look. At this point, putting GOP signs in your lawn might as well be the same as wearing a top hat and monocle, especially when Minnesota Republicans are quoted as saying they’re scared that immigrants are going to take their fancy cabins they spend a quarter mil on and only live in a couple of months out of the year. Where’s YOUR toy house, peasants? I guess you just didn’t work hard enough like I did when I inherited the money to buy this cabin… and now, thanks to the Estate Tax cut, I can pass on even more money to my kids so they can buy bigger cabins!
But don’t think I’ve forgotten about the local level: Greg Davids, what is up with your newspaper ads? All these lame, non-specific policy points and saying they should vote for you because you’re the name everyone knows… why on earth are you taking pointers from the Hillary campaign? Because, last I checked, running ads like that didn’t work out super well for her. Just saying “this is who has been in power” is not only the sort of thing Hillary said in 2016, but it’s also the exact opposite of what Jeff Johnson’s signs are saying. What gives?
This is some really weird messaging, you guys. I’m really not sure what’s going on at the GOP these days: I mean, it’s not like you’re completely bankrupt on ideas that will actually help regular people, and all your policies only seem to make the rich richer, so you try to cover your campaigns in slogans that mean nothing and, weirdly, disprove your other slogans… that can’t be the case, right? Because if that were the case… why would anyone vote for you tomorrow?