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Posts Tagged ‘David von Drehle’

VAL 2016 | Donald Trump ser allt mer ut att kunna bli republikanernas presidentkandidat.

“He’s got the mo, he’s got the masses”, säger den politiska strategen Rick Hohlt. ”He’s attracting a new class of voters.”

Försöken att stoppa Trump har så här långt misslyckats. Inte minst för att han blivit smartare ju mer han har varit ute och kampanjat. “He knows when to push and when to back off.”

Men hans motståndare måste försöka göra något för att stoppa honom om man skall ha en rejäl chans att bli nominerad.

Enligt David Von Drehle på tidskriften Time har Ted Cruz plockat fram en gammal strategi som användes av Barry Goldwater redan 1964.

Men om denna strategi lyckas kan det mycket väl innebära att Cruz splittras och sänka möjligheterna för Cruz att bli president om han skulle lyckas bli nominerad.

The man is moving people, and politics does not get more basic than that. Trump is a bonfire in a field of damp kindling—an overcrowded field of governors and former governors and junior Senators still trying to strike a spark. His nearest rival, Senator Ted Cruz of Texas, has traction in Iowa among the evangelical bloc and—in contrast to Trump—is a tried-and-true Suite 3505 by F. Clifton Whieconservative. But with little more than half the support Trump boasts in the RealClearPolitics average of national polls, Cruz has a long way to go to show that he can move masses.

Cruz staffers, tellingly, have been studying a 1967 tome titled Suite 3505 as a playbook for their campaign. This F. Clifton White memoir, long out of print, tells the story of the 1964
Barry Goldwater campaign. That was the last successful populist rebellion inside the Republican Party, propelling a rock-ribbed conservative past the Establishment insiders–just as Cruz hopes to do. But this triumph of intramural knife fighting proved a disaster at general-election time. Goldwater suffered one of the worst defeats in American political history. It’s no wonder that GOP leaders are every bit as wary of Cruz as they are of Trump.

In short, the GOP has awakened less than a month from the Iowa caucuses and the New Hampshire primary to find itself in bed between a bombshell and a kamikaze. It’s a sobering dawn for a political party that seemed, not long ago, just a tweak or two away from glory.

Bild: Omslaget till boken Suite 3505 av F. Clifton White.

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VAL 2016 | ”Disintermediation” är ett uttryck som vi måste lära oss om framöver vi vill kunna förstå och tolka amerikanskt väljarbeteende.

Time January 18 2016

Enligt David Von Drehle på tidskriften Time är detta förklaringen till både Donald Trumps framgångar hos republikanerna och Bernie Sanders hos demokraterna.

Disintermediation betyder helt enkelt att väljarna har tröttnat på att låta partiernas toppar, media och olika ekonomiska intressen tolka och lägga tillrätta vad de skall tro och tänka. Man vill nu ha det politiska budskapet direkt från källan – utan mellanhänder, spin och försköningar.

Disintermediation är med andra ord en del av den nya tidsandan.

Von Drehle skriver:

Big Money, the supposed superpower of post–Citizens United politics, is a dud so far. Super-PAC bets by various billionaires have done nothing to fire up such candidates as former Florida governor Jeb Bush. Bush has filled screens in key states with millions of dollars in both positive and negative ads. The result: falling poll numbers. Touted as a front runner a year ago, Bush is mired in single digits and rang in the new year by announcing that he was scrapping a round of ads in favor of more ground troops in early-voting states.

Big Media too has been brought low. The collapse of Trump was predicted so often, so erroneously, in so many outlets that the spectacle was almost comic, like a soap opera that keeps killing off the same deathless character.

[…]

What if all of these groundswells are part of the same tsunami? By coming to grips with Trump, Republicans might begin grasping the future of presidential politics, as the digital forces that have upended commerce and communications in recent years begin to shake the bedrock of civic life.

Disintermediation is a long word for a seemingly simple idea: dumping the middleman. It came into use a half-century ago to describe changes in the banking business.

[…]

Donald Trump is history’s most disintermediated presidential front runner. He has sidestepped the traditional middlemen–party, press, pollsters and pooh-bahs–to sell his candidacy directly to voters, building on a relationship he has nurtured with the public from project to project across decades.

[…]

This can explain why Trump is unscathed by apparent gaffes and blunders that would kill an ordinary candidate. His followers feel that they already know him. When outraged middlemen wail in disgust on cable news programs and in op-ed columns, they only highlight their irrelevance to the Trumpiverse.

Indeed, the psychology of disintermediation adds another layer of protection to a figure like Trump. For members of an online network, the death of the middlemen is not some sad side effect of this tidal shift; it is a crusade. Early adopters of Netflix relished the fate of brick-and-mortar video stores, just as Trump voters rejoice in the idea of life without the “lamestream” media. Trump gets this: mocking abuse of his traveling press corps is a staple of his campaign speeches.

[…]

With disintermediation, the power to set the campaign agenda shifts from the middlemen to the online networks, and those networks, this year, are very angry. Here, again, Trump is far outrunning his rivals in seizing the momentum. Americans are unhappy about an economy that punishes workers, according to opinion polls and conversations with voters. They are tired of politicians who don’t deliver on their promises.

[…]

These voters don’t want someone to feel their pain; they want someone to mirror their mood. Woe to the candidate who can’t growl on cue. Perhaps nothing has hurt the Bush campaign–whose money and endorsements, lavished by middlemen, have fizzled on the launchpad–more than Trump’s observation that the former Florida governor is “low energy.” Translation: he’s not ticked off. Voter anger in this sour season is less a data point than table stakes.

[…]

But if Trump voters are angry, that doesn’t mean they’re crazy. You meet more state representatives and business owners at his rallies than tinfoil-hat conspiracy buffs. In ways, they are a vanguard, catching sight of a new style of politics and deciding early to throw out the old rules. Their radical democracy helps account for Trump’s uncanny resilience: the less he honors the conventions of politics, the more his supporters like him. They aren’t buying what the political process is selling. They want to buy direct from the source.

Tidskriftsomslag: Time, 18 januari 2016.

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USA | Idag ser ingen demokrat ut att kunna utmana Clinton om hon verkligen vill bli demokraternas presidentkandidat.

Time March 23 2015

Att Hillary Clinton har använt sin private dator som utrikesminister, och sedan försökt dölja detta, har dock ställt till det för hennes troliga presidentvalskampanj.

Frågan är bara om det permanent har skadat henne.

Kanske väcker detta ”Emailgate” minnena från hennes mans alla skandaler. Vill amerikanarna verkligen se ännu en Clinton i Vita huset?

David Von Drehle skriver i Time:

As a rule, these are words no politician wants to be speaking in the days leading up to the launch of a major campaign:

“What I did was to direct, you know, my counsel to conduct a thorough investigation …”

“I fully complied with every rule that I was governed by.”

“They were personal and private, about matters that I believed were in the scope of my personal privacy.”

As a rule, a candidate wants to take flight on outstretched wings of hope, not scramble in the dirt on the crabbed limbs of legal compliance. Every day spent saying “Trust me, my lawyer’s O.K. with it” is a bad day – and worse if she appears to be reading from lawyer-vetted notes.

As a rule, these would be dire, perhaps fatal, markers of a campaign crashing on takeoff. But in this case the politician was Hillary Clinton, whose carefully laid plans to unveil her latest presidential bid hit turbulence on March 10 as she fumbled her way through an awkward press conference in a corridor at the U.N. At issue: Clinton’s decision to ignore White House guidance as Secretary of State and instead conduct government business through a private email account hosted on her family’s personal server.

[…]

Along with her husband – the 42nd President of the United States – Hillary Clinton is the co-creator of a soap-operatic political universe in witch documents vanish, words like is take on multiple meanings and foes almost always overplay their hand. Impeachment can be a route to higher approval ratings; the occasional (and rare) defeat merely marks the start of the next campaign. Whatever rules may apply to them, the law of gravity is not one.

[…]

What doesn’t kill Team Clinton only makes it stronger. Will that be the lesson again? Hillary Clinton has a vast lead over any potential challenger for the Democratic nomination, and 86% of Democrats are ready to support her, according to a recent NBC/Wall Street Journal poll. Though her poor handling of the email issue has left party insiders unsure whether she learned anything from her slow-footed and wooden 2008 campaign, insiders don’t control elections. Voters do.

The veteran New York political consultant Hank Sheinkopf, a former adviser to Bill Clinton, is unsure. “These stories will reach critical mass and coverage as she gets closer to any announcement date,” says Sheinkopf, “and they will damage her because they offer a portrayal of someone who plays fast and loose with rules.” But Clinton stories have reached critical mass so many times before. And still, to borrow from Maya Angelou, they rise.

Läs mer: Om Clintons kampanjteam i Michael Scherers ”Go time for Hillary” i Time. Om Clintons krishantering i efterdyningarna av ”Emailgate” i Dylan Byers Hillary Clinton team woos reporters” i Politico

Tidskriftsomslag: Time, 23 mars 2015.

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USA | Tidskriften Time utsåg påven till ”Person of the Year” 2013. På femte plats kom republikanen Ted Cruz, Tea Party-rörelsens darling.

.Time 23 december 2013Time 23 december 2013.

David von Drehle skrev bl.a. följande om den ideologiskt motiverade senatorn som alla tror vill bli sitt partis presidentkandidat:

[Ted] Cruz—like his fellow Tea Party freshmen Rand Paul of Kentucky and Marco Rubio of Florida—appears to be eyeing a path blazed by his nemesis, President Obama, in which the Senate is just a pit stop in a grander race. Though Cruz disagrees with nearly everything the President believes in, he appreciates Obama as a political tactician. “I respect President Obama as a man of deep principles, who is clearly willing to pay a steep political price for those ­principles—as he is doing with Obama­care,” Cruz said solemnly as the December sun slanted through his office windows in a downtown Houston skyscraper. “I also believe those principles are wrong and harmful for the country.”

When it comes to tactics, however, Obama is “absolutely” a role model, Cruz said. In his Senate race against an overwhelming favorite, Cruz followed the battle plan laid out by Obama’s 2008 upset of Hillary Clinton. He even required his top staff members to study the campaign memoir written by Obama strategist David Plouffe.

But Cruz demurred when asked if he intends, like Obama, to skedaddle from the Senate at the first possible opportunity. He was happy to talk about the sort of candidate the Republicans should nominate in 2016. “Look back over the last 40 years. Every time Republicans nominated a candidate who ran as a strong conservative, we’ve won. Every time we ran as moderate, Establishment Republicans, we lost.”

[…]

If conservative theorists could build a cyborg in a lab vacuum-sealed against the slightest contamination by heterodox ideas, the result would be Rafael Edward Cruz. I say that because it is very nearly Cruz’s life story.

The lab was called the Free Enterprise Education Center. It was the creation of Rolland Storey, a wealthy Texas conservative who sought to identify promising young minds and mold them in an atmosphere of foundational conservative texts. Storey’s acolytes read Friedrich Hayek, Milton Friedman, Ludwig von Mises and Frédéric Bastiat. They memorized long passages of the Constitution and toured Rotary and Kiwanis luncheons dazzling audiences by reciting entire sections verbatim. They were like Spartans of the conservative mind, and Cruz was their Leonidas—winner of the annual speech contest four years in a row. (The topic was always freedom.)

[…]

George Will, the dean of conservative columnists, sized up Cruz and pronounced his background “as good as it gets.”

Democrats may harbor similar feelings, for they’ve made Cruz a favorite target, comparing him to the run-amok Senator Joseph McCarthy of communist witch-hunting fame. […] But Cruz is no McCarthy, who melted away in an alcoholic haze. No: Cruz is a more formidable foe, one built to last. He knows the difference between risk and recklessness, and his drink of choice is Dr Pepper.

Bild: Uppslag i Time, 23 december 2013.

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HISTORIA | I en bearbetad text från Rise to Greatness: Abraham Lincon and America’s Most Perilous Year finns en intressant beskrivning av Lincoln.

Harper's Weekly, 27 april 1861

Författaren David Von Drehle skriver i Time:

Of all the words a proud, ambitious man might use to describe himself, perhaps only Abraham Lincoln would choose strange. Yet there it is. In one of his earliest wisps of autobiography, Lincoln wrote that he was “a strange, friendless, uneducated, penniless boy” when he emerged from the backwoods in his early 20s to make his way in the world. Editors of Lincoln’s Collected Works found the word so perplexing that they added an r to transform him into a mere stranger. But the late David Herbert Donald, one of Lincoln’s most admired biographers, astutely recognized that the man meant what he said.

Strange can mean odd or quirky, and Lincoln was certainly that. His foes nicknamed him the Gorilla, which captures his long-armed, shambling animal strength. His hands and feet were enormous, and his brow was simian. Yet when he spoke, a high and reedy voice twanged forth incongruously. At one moment, he might be braying loudly over one of his own salty jokes, and at the next, lost in catatonic silence.

Strange can also mean unfamiliar, alien. This too is Lincoln, who never quite fit in. The youthful Lincoln was a rawboned genius on an uncomprehending frontier. As President, he was a self-taught rustic surrounded by the polished burghers of Eastern society. Magnetic, keenly sensitive, often able to understand others better than they understood themselves, Lincoln was nevertheless profoundly isolated. Perhaps the early deaths of his mother and sister steeped him in sorrow so thoroughly that he learned to prefer loneliness to intimacy. He “never had a confidant,” his law partner William Herndon wrote. “He was the most reticent and mostly secretive man that ever existed.”

Despite interviewing dozens of Lincoln’s associates in the months after his death, J.G. Holland, an early biographer, found himself stumped. “There are not two who agree in their estimate of him,” he wrote. One would say “he was a very ambitious man”; another would assert “that he was without a particle of ambition.” People said that “he was one of the saddest men that ever lived, and that he was one of the jolliest men that ever lived … that he was a man of indomitable will, and that he was a man almost without a will; that he was a tyrant, and that he was the softest-hearted, most brotherly man that ever lived.” The real Lincoln, Holland concluded, was the sum of his contradictions.

Bild: En sida ur Harper’s Weekly den 27 april 1861. Enligt uppgift står det i artikeln att bilden på Lincoln är första officiella porträttet efter att han lagt sig till med skägg.

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VALEXTRA | Inte oväntat är nyhetsmagasinen fyllda av eftervalsanalyser. Här är några om varför Barack Obama vann och vad som nu väntar.

For Obama, Survival Is the New Winning” av David von Drehle

(Time, 19 november 2012)

A subtle message about things to come may have been planted in the victory speech. The re-elected President, having proved that he can win by brawling and not just by floating on gossamer dreams, announced a new era of mature discipline — starting at home. Four years ago, Barack Obama delivered hope and change to his daughters in the lovable form of a brand-new puppy. This time around, all they got was a pat on the head. “Sasha and Malia,” he said before an adoring — and relieved — crowd in Chicago, “I’m so proud of you guys. But I will say that for now, one dog’s probably enough.”

Fortunate One av Daniel Klaidman

(Newsweek/The Daily Beast, 19 november 2012)

As Republicans lick their wounds in the wake of their electoral drubbing, they may be tempted to blame their woes on Obama’s luck. But that would be self-defeating. They’d be better off finding solace in the fact this is the last time they’ll have to run against Barack Obama, a man who is so skilled at both creating and seizing on good fortune. “Obama is a preparation freak,” says one member of his cabinet, who spoke on the condition of anonymity. “He makes his own luck.”

The Next Four Years: Obama’s Holding the Cards” av Joshua Green

(Bloomberg Businessweek, 12-18 november 2012)

At first glance, the results of the 2012 election look like a return to the status quo: President Obama was reelected, Democrats retained the Senate, and Republicans held on to the House. But don’t be fooled. The political dynamic of the next four years will be almost exactly the opposite of the last four. […] In Obama’s second term, leverage will shift to the Democrats on almost every issue of importance. And that shift has already begun.

Ledare: “Now, hug a Republican

(The Economist, 10-16 november 2012)

This newspaper endorsed Mr Obama and is glad he won, but he was lucky: lucky for the second time to have faced a less fluent opponent weighed down by his party’s trunkful of baggage; lucky that the American economy perked up, a little, just when he needed it to; maybe lucky even that Hurricane Sandy appeared when it did. Mr Obama fought an appallingly negative campaign and scraped a victory in both the swing states and the popular vote (which he won by only 2.4%, the lowest ever for a successfully re-elected president). The Democrats’ gains in the Senate stemmed largely from the Republicans choosing candidates of such tragicomic extremism that they might have been characters from a Tom Wolfe novel. And, above all, in the House the Republicans preserved their majority, feel vindicated and are spoiling for a fight.

Bild: Tidskriftsomslagen är Time och Newsweek den 19 november, Bloomberg Businessweek den 12-18 november och The Economist den 10-16 november. (Bloomberg Bussinesweek hade ett omslag med en åldrad Mitt Romney redo ifall han vunnit.)

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OBAMACARE | Omslaget “In Good Health” av Bob Staake syftar på att Barack Obama fick grönt ljus för sin sjukvårdsreform av Högsta domstolen.

– The New Yorker den 9 & 16 juli 2012 –

Läs mer: Jesse Wegmans “Explaining the Supreme Court Ruling on Obamacare” (The Daily Beast) och David Von Drehles “Roberts Rules: What the Health Care Decision Means for the Country(Time).

Se mer: The New Yorker har ett bildspel med fler av tidskriftens omslag med Barack Obama.

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