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The Democratic Strategist

Political Strategy for a Permanent Democratic Majority

Inconvenient Truth

In case you’ve missed it, there’s an increasingly toxic conflict going on in the blogosphere between Markos Moulitsas of Daily Kos and Jason Zengerle of The New Republic. Without going into the numbing details, suffice it to say that Jason leaked some Kos comments from an off-the-record blogger email exchange about the brouhaha over Jerome Armstrong’s supposed conflicts of interest and then accused him of trying to silence discussion of the issue, and Markos responded about like you’d expect him to.Personally, I’m not supportive of all the follow-the-money innuendo being aimed at lefty bloggers in recent days. I don’t like these kind of ad hominem attacks when David Sirota aims them at anybody who dares disagree with him, and don’t like it any better when the arrows are being fired towards the left instead of the center-left. But unfortunately, instead of just barbecuing Zengerle, Markos went ballistic on his employers:

[Th]e New Republic betrayed, once again, that it seeks to destroy the new people-powered movement for the sake of its Lieberman-worshipping neocon owners; that it stands with the National Review and wingnutoshpere in their opposition to grassroots Democrats.

He goes on at considerable length to mock TNR as a “dying” institution (which in Kos Speak presumably ranks it a bit above the “dead” DLC), just before encouraging readers to write letters to the allegedly moribund journal complaining about Zengere. But just as Markos picked a bad time (shortly before an annual meeting that will attract record numbers of state and local elected officials from around the country) to declare the DLC dead, he picked an especially bad day to label TNR a self-conscious organ of the Right Wing Conspiracy. After all, TNR just posted an article by its editor-in-chief, Martin Peretz, endorsing Al Gore for president in 2008. As regular readers of Daily Kos know, Gore has become the runaway favorite for 2008 among Kossacks. Inconvenient but true, eh?I had an immediate mental image of Markos and Marty sitting uncomfortably together on an Al Gore campaign bus (perhaps emblazoned with signs reading “Re-Elect Gore To A Third Term”) rolling through rural Iowa a year or so down the road. That’s probably cynical of me, but I gotta tell you, if Gore does run it looks like he’ll have the most incongruous set of supporters since Mo Udall and George Wallace both endorsed Jimmy Carter in 1976.

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