Sunday, December 21, 2008

Mike Duncan Utterly Unqualified to be Republican National Committee Chairman

Since his appointment as Chairman of the Republican National Committee in 2007, Mike Duncan has led the Republican Party to the most spectacular national political defeat in Modern American History. To call the Republican National Committee campaign efforts under his leadership disastrously inept is to be charitable to him.

The party’s 2008 Presidential nominee, John McCain, was thoroughly trounced by a Democratic opposition that was agile, well organized, focused, and technologically savvy. We also lost a significant number of seats in both the Senate and the House, where we were already a minority.

Inexplicably, Mr. Duncan apparently seems to believe that his dismal performance of failed leadership in the 2008 election recommends him for another term as RNC chair. Let's face it, his DNC counterpart, the maniacally screechy Howard Dean, just knocked his block off, and Mr. Duncan apparently still fails to realize his own culpability in this debacle.

How else can you explain Mr. Duncan’s recent announcement that he is declaring himself a candidate for another term as RNC Chair, despite the fact that there are already five other candidates in the race, all of whom are eminently more qualified than him to lead the party out of its recent failures?

There are a few who defend Duncan’s leadership. They claim he is a good manager of resources. This argument sounds to me like recommending the captain of the Titanic, had he survived the tragedy, to captain the very next transatlantic passenger ship voyage on the grounds that the kitchen of the Titanic did not once run out of rolls during the entire voyage... at least, until the ship sank in the icy waters of the North Atlantic.

Immediately after the election losses, a spate of grass roots efforts grew up, literally almost overnight, to resurrect the Republican Party, this time around based on true principles of conservatism and an understanding and skill in the use of technology to communicate the conservative message. The first, and arguably the most recognized of these efforts, the Rebuild the Party movement, was launched by Patrick Ruffini, who set forward a detailed action plan for the party just days after the election loss.

Other movements, such as Smart Girl Politics, and the #dontgo movement, and the New Republicans, are also spurring the growth of grass roots movements, as well as the group of which I am the co-founder, Top Conservatives on Twitter, which at this moment has over 1,500 members and is growing fast.

There are tens of thousands of netizen warriors working to rebuild the conservative movement and Republican Party this very moment.

I personally set forward a Plan to Rebuild the Republican Party, but I am but one among thousands.

Energy abounds within the conservative grass roots movement. Our organization, which goes by the Twitter search acronym #TCOT, has already set forward a plan to reclaim Congress for Conservative Republicans in 2010.

The awful truth of the matter, which we must acknowledge plainly and honestly, is that Mike Duncan is the #1 technological laggard, and it is time for him to get out of the way so the grass roots conservative movement can now lead the Republican party back to victory.

We’ve been tracking Mr. Duncan's committment to technology here, and the truth is, he's not even making an effort, unlike his five opponents.

Therefore, this evening I am calling on Mike Duncan to immediately withdraw his candidacy for the position of Chairman of the Republican National Committee. I know that he is committed to conservative principles, and I am telling him plainly and directly that the very best thing he can do to advance the cause of conservatism and the Republican Party is to take this personally uncomfortable step right now.

I am making this call for his withdrawal as an individual grass roots conservative Republican activist, who was elected statewide as a Tennessee Delegate to the Republican National Convention in 2008. I speak only for myself, but as co-founder of #TCOT I can say with complete certainty that my views represent the vast majority of the #TCOT community. With the exception of a few of his announced supporters who have recently joined our group, I would hazard to guess that my view may well be unanimously supported by the rapidly growing group of 1,500 conservative activist “netizen warriors”

The 168 members of the Republican National Committee will be voting on January 28-29, 2009 to select a Chairman for the next two years, and I am asking every member of the #TCOT organization who agrees with my views on the necessity of Mr. Duncan's withdrawal to communicate directly and through the use of their blogs with these 168 members.

You can contact these 168 members here.

In addition, you can tell me if you agree with my call for Mike Duncan to withdraw immediately from the RNC Chair Race by taking the online poll on this topic, which you can find now at the #TCOT Report.

I am publicly calling for Mr. Duncan's immediate withdrawal from the RNC race for 2 reasons:

1. The mere fact he has announced his candidacy, in light of two years of the most spectacular failure in American political history indicates how utterly disconnected he is from the real world of technology and engagement in which the rest of us live.

2. Apparently, some RNC members – among those 168 who will be able to vote for Chair Jan 28 are equally disconnected from reality and may be considering a vote for Duncan. This is hard to believe, and points to the importance of immediate corrective action.

The conservative and Republican grass roots movement are likely to ignore the RNC if Mr. Duncan is elected Chairman in January. Frankly, it will sound the death knell of irrelevancy for the RNC. The old guard at the RNC blew it big time. It's time for the failed old guard to step out of the way and let us in the grass roots movement lead now.

I note that Mr. Duncan apparently has recently and belatedly endorsed the Rebuild the Party Platform, but based on his performance of the past two years, I am convinced that he does not comprehend how to implement this platform. It looks to me like he is just checking the box.

Others in the press have recently noted that Mr. Duncan isn't up for the job. Here’s what Shawn Steel had to say in Politico yesterday:

“Duncan has been the Invisible Chairman, installed in January 2007 by Karl Rove to be unobtrusive — a mission he has carried out brilliantly. Many, if not most, Republican leaders and activists don’t know who he is. For example, when Duncan was a guest recently on the Hugh Hewitt Show, the radio host asked Duncan why this was the first time this RNC chairman had ever asked to come on the show and address millions of his fellow Republicans.

Duncan couldn’t give an answer other than he’d been busy for the past year. I suppose that’s one way to look at it. Another way is he hasn’t provided the kind of leadership the Republican National Committee needs in this day and age.

Despite his wraithlike RNC chairman, Duncan is slightly favored for reelection as chairman at the end of January. It should be cause for alarm when the chairmanship front-runner is a “Mike Who?” under who’s watch the GOP suffered its worst drubbing in decades.”

You can read the rest of the article here.

The opposition, also, apparently, is gleeful at the possibility of Mr. Duncan maintaining the Chairmanship of the RNC. Here’s what Yuna Shin recently said at the Huffington Post.

“This morning, NPR's Steve Inskeep interviewed the chairman of the Republican party, Mike Duncan, who is trying to hold on to his chairmanship despite the massive GOP loss in November. The most interesting part of the interview wasn't anything Duncan said.

Rather, it was Duncan's long silence when asked about the perception of the GOP as the party of exclusion. His silence spoke louder than anything that he had said in terms of how incapable the Republican Party still is of recognizing what it did wrong and what it needs to do in order to gain Americans' trust.”

The rest of that article can be found here.

In light of this overwhelming evidence, I humbly request that Mr. Duncan honor my suggestion that he withdraw his candidacy immediately. At #TCOT, all our actions are based on the concept of servant-leadership, a concept that is well articulated
here by James Dickey, the #1 Top Conservative on Twitter.

I believe that after Mr. Duncan has read this article, and thoughtfully reflected on how he can best serve the Republican Party and the conservative movement, he will recognize it is his duty to withdraw from the race for the Chairmanship of the RNC immediately.

A Plan to Rebuild the Republican Party Despite the Brain Dead Luddites Who Run It

Many grass roots conservative activists have set forward a plan to rebuild the Republican Party. Patrick Ruffini led the way with his Rebuild the Party group, which set forward a plan of action within a few days of the disastrous November 2008 election.

Here's my personal analysis of what went wrong in 2008, and what has to change for Republicans to succeed in 2010 and 2012.

A Plan to Rebuild the Republican Party Despite the Brain Dead Luddites Who Run It

George Bush lost his way when he abandoned policies of limited government and fiscal conservatism in a number of areas, ranging from the unprecedented pharmaceuticals entitlement program to No Child Left Behind. John McCain lost the 2008 election by mismanaging Sarah Palin’s post-convention introduction to the American voter, supporting the ill advised, pork filled $700 billion financial services industry bail out, and most importantly, failing to convey a clear conservative message to under 30 voters using state of the art 21st century communications tools and the language of imagery and symbolism they understand.

A detailed analysis of the election results shows that it is the 8 million vote majority among under 30 voters, who chose Obama over McCain by more than a 2 to 1 margin, that gave Obama his overall 8 million vote majority and a 52% to 46% win. Projecting the demographic trends forward to 2012, Leahy shows that unless Republicans can win with these under 30 voters, Obama’s margin in 2012 will grow to 54% to 44%.

I recommends a six step program that will lead to Republican success in 2010 and 2012.

(1) Return to conservative principles of limited government, lower taxes, and fiscal conservatism

(2) Frame this conservative message in the symbolism and imagery that will be persuasive to voters who are now between 15 and 29 years of age.

(3) Communicate this conservative message to all voters, but especially voters now between the ages of 15 and 29 using state of the art 21st Century technologies.

(4) Contest all 435 House of Representative elections and all local elections in 2010 and 2012.

(5) Kick the Rinos (Republicans in Name Only) out of the party, and rein in the Rinkos (Republicans in Name Kind Of).

(6) Engage every Republican of every age in growing the party through action, not talk. This will require the establishment of a technologically integrated web based communication network that connects every Republican County organization in real time with the State and National organizations. Young, forward looking, visionary leadership at the very top of the Republican National Committee is required for this. Technology and communication innovators like Patrick Ruffini and Erick Erickson should lead the way, not tired old Rinkos or Brain Dead Luddites.

There are several obstacles that must be overcome to succeed with this program. He begins by showing that we are still a Center-Right country, but that Republicans must acknowledge certain truths. The failure to do so will limit the effectiveness of his six part plan.

These truths are:

(1) The mainstream media is officially and permanently an arm of the Democratic Party.

(2) The nation is now comprised of a productive minority made up of small business owners and middle class and upper-middle class workers, who must constantly protect against the encroachment on their rights from the tyrannical majority, which consists of the half of all Americans who pay no income taxes, unions, bureaucrats, and Fortune 500 executives who benefit from public aid.

(3) There is no such thing as bi-partisan cooperation. Every political action taken by the left and the Democrat party is designed to defeat and humiliate the right and the Republican Party. Only vigilance, strength, and devotion to principle will yield any benefits for the productive minority.

The Republican Party needs to be a Big Tent, but the right kind of Big Tent. The "Big Tent Fallacy" which claims that shifting away from true conservatism will attract members of the tyrannical majority is a dangerous falsehood that should be rejected. The "Big Tent Maxim" should be that we welcome those from any group into the Republican Party who embrace the core principles of true conservativism.

(4) Only Republican leaders who are charismatic, adept at communicating symbolically using state of the art technologies, and unwaveringly committed to conservative principles will succeed.

The Netizen Warriors at Top Conservatives on Twitter

Since the days of Ronald Reagan's vision of America as the "shining city on a hill," conservatives have been motivated to create an ideal version of our country.

Of late, we've lost our way.

Too many conservatives are looking backwards to the "Glory Days" of those great leaders who are no longer with us. They lived in a different world, with different technologies and a different citizenry.

It serves no purpose for us to wail and bemoan our recent misfortunes, as we try in vain to relive that which will never be again.

The path to re-establishing a limited government, one that is responsible only for those elements of the common good which we cannot provide for ourselves will not be shown by political leaders who live in decades past, nor by “talking heads” comfortably assured of their own intellectual superiority. Those who are interested in telling us what they think, but not hearing what we know, cannot lead; they can only stand in the way.

Limited government will be re-established through the independently undertaken but voluntarily coordinated efforts of hundreds of thousands of netizen-warriors just like you and me. Unlike the CEOs of auto companies and mortgage companies begging to be bailed out of financial debacles of their
own profligacy, the netizen-warrior approaches the task of righting our nation with the humility of servant leadership.

From that community servant leadership comes the moral authority by which other likeminded netizen-warriors will collectively work to return our country to the principles upon which it was founded.

It is upon these principles of modern day netizen warriorship that we have founded Top Conservatives on Twitter.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Ford Motor's Head of Social Media Pioneers Public Dialogue with Conservative Grass Roots Movement

In my role as co-founder of Top Conservatives on Twitter, the Twitter based grass roots organization of conservatives dedicated to action projects that will return conservative Republicans to a majority in Congress in 2010, I was on one end of a fascinating two way public conversation that caused a bit of a stir in the blogosphere yesterday.

We had just completed one phase of Operation Fight The Bailout (our 1,200 plus members sent a thundering herd of Bailout Rinos as Facebook "gifts" to the 32 House Republicans who voted in favor of the Auto Bailout bill this past week, and were savoring the rejection of the bill in the Senate the next day, when Ford Motor Company's new Head of Social Media, Scott Monty, entered the #TCOT tweet stream.

You can read the rest of this article in my column today at Red County

Thursday, December 11, 2008

#TCOT' (Top Conservatives on Twitter) sends Facebook "Bailout RINO" Gifts to 32 House Republicans

Bailout RINO
Yesterday, the 1,000 plus members of Top Conservatives on Twitter launched a thundering herd of "Bailout RINO" Gifts to the 32 House Republicans who voted FOR the Auto Bailout, which had passed earlier in the day by a significant margin.

Today, the Senate failed to garner enough votes to bring the Bailout Bill to the floor.

Coincidence ?

RINKO--Republican in Name Kind of (Half Republican, Half RINO)

Hugh Hewitt and Top Conservatives on Twitter Combine for Social Media Broadcast Innovation !

Hugh Hewitt, by far the best up and coming conservative talk show host in the country, combined yesterday with our own growing conservative group on Twitter, Top Conservatives on Twitter to deliver an innovative simulcast of his live radio program and "Town Hall Tweeting" on Twitter.

To watch the dialogue again today from 4pm CST to 7 pm CST, go to Enter "#hhrs" and search. You will see the live "tweet stream" from Hugh and his great producer Duane as they comment on their interviews with top guests !

Thursday, December 04, 2008

Tennessee Republicans Reward RINOs ?

Conservative Talk Show power house Steve Gill says Tennessee Republicans are rewarding RINOs.

Click here to read my column in Red County on that topic.