On 10th Anniversary, Netroots Bummed That They’ve Been Marginalized


At one point, the Netroots, the bloggers and such on the Left, were a major force within the Democrat Party. That was a time when George W. Bush was in office, and Democrats wanted that cool, sweet money and support from people who intentionally decided to see how crazy they could be. Who constantly referred to W as a monkey, who wrote and said disgusting things about Bush, who were constantly calling for his death, etc and so on. And the Daily Beast has sad face story up about their slow, painful demise

Susie Madrak started blogging in 2001, just after Sept. 11, back when the country was hurtling head-first into war and the blogosphere was a mysterious frontier on the far edges of the Internet.

“It was infuriating,” Madrak recalled of the political moment that spurred her to start throwing her own commentary online. “I could see that they were fabricating the reasons for war. Blogging was what I did instead of throwing a brick through the window.”

Hmm, so David Freedlander starts off his story by featuring a 9/11 Truther and wonders just why the Nutroots is dying out as a political force?

But with another critical election two weeks away, politicians, political operatives, and even the bloggers themselves say the Netroots are a whisper of what they were only four years ago, a dial-up modem in a high-speed world, and that the brigade of laptop-wielding revolutionaries who stormed the convention castle four years ago have all but disappeared as a force within the Democratic Party.

The Dem insiders already have enough crazies (Stef Cutter, Debbie Wasserman Schultz, among others) and don’t need any more. But, that’s not really the real reason the Nutroots is on life support

But then came the wave election of 2006, and suddenly the presidency was in sight. But the Netroots, like most Democrats, were divided among Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, and John Edwards. During that campaign, the political blogosphere on the left became less known for sparking offline activism and more known for epic fights among those with divided loyalties.

To use the Left’s own talking points, the Netroots were racists, and broke for Edwards and Clinton, not that upstart Obama. And we all have to remember that Obama never forgets a slight and tends to hold grudges personally, hence, the Netroots has been marginalized by the Party.

There’s also been a movement towards the big corporate “blogs” like Think Progress and Talking Points Memo and a consolidation of blogs. The coherency of outrage against Bush has disintegrated to being blogs with no idea what they want. The “sheepleness” is no longer apparent. Some might say “hey, they seem similar to the Right-o-sphere”. Yes. But, the right side of the Blogosphere never really attempted to become a big force. There was never any real coordination amongst the blogs to push certain stories, nor to coordinate with the GOP. The Right side never pushed the same talking points as everyone else. When a big story comes along, there is no coordination, it’s just bloggers who are interested in the same story, hence the reason that Right siders tend to link others to provide other points of view. Lefties rarely linked each other.

“The downside to the growth of Daily Kos and the professionalization of our medium is that the small-time blogger is on the verge of extinction,” writes Moulitsas. “That chaotic cacophony of amateur online voices was beautiful while it lasted, though.”

You don’t find that on the Right. You still have big time bloggers on the Right, and the small fry (like me) still have a voice. More show up and raise their voice.

Asked if she hopes to keep at it, Madrak said: “Oh Christ, I hope not. I just turned 58. I have been out of work for four years. No one is breaking down the door to give me an offer. Until I have other options I have to keep doing this.”

Liberalism in a nutshell: give me instead of going out and doing the hard work. And she’s still going to vote Democrat, after being out of work for 4 years in the Obameconomy.

Crossed at Pirate’s Cove. Follow me on Twitter @WilliamTeach.

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