This is a classic case of disruption. And until the Democrats recognize this, change their strategy, they’re doomed. Talking about the popular vote is no different from record labels saying customers preferred CDs in the era of Napster. Trump won with a new playbook appealing to a broad swath of the public and until the left wing wakes up and adjusts its plan it will not succeed.
Then there are those who think it’s the same as it ever was. That shenanigans were employed and all the markers pointing to a sea change don’t apply, because politics never changes, wrong. First we had Brexit, then we had Trump, now people are laughing at the World Economic Forum, the elites lost control, and now they keep circling the wagons whilst telling us they’re right and one would laugh if it weren’t so scary.
Clayton Christensen tells one to beware of servicing the same old audience.
The Democrats decided to appeal to Wall Street and Silicon Valley and took for granted that minorities would vote for them, believing the disadvantaged had no other choice.
Christensen also says the disruptor is laughable at first, inadequate, but it keeps getting better until it triumphs. Donald Trump is laughable, and he continues to be, but he appealed to people who felt they were not being listened to and they voted him into office.
Who were these people?
The left-behinds. The ones who used to have high-paying blue collar jobs, the ones who used to be in unions. And you can say a vote for Trump is worse for them, but they were ready to upend the table to get attention, because no one was listening to them.
And the response from the left wing elite?
They’re idiots! The left wing cannot stop denigrating the Trump voter, at the same time blaming it all on someone else. All those stories about the advantaged voting for Trump… The Donald won because of Ohio, Michigan and Wisconsin, where jobs are scarce and there’s economic depression, not that this was unknown, for years touring acts have avoided the Ohio Valley, because people don’t have enough money, they just went where the bucks were.
The left wing went where the bucks were.
And ran the wrong candidate.
The establishment is always blindsided. Blame Debbie Wasserman Schultz. Blame the entire Democratic Party apparatus. They couldn’t see the disaffection with Hillary, they couldn’t see the Bernie Sanders groundswell. People wanted anybody but her, and they didn’t want Joe Biden, they wanted an outsider. To this date the Dems can’t admit they’ve lost touch with their base. Once again, the disruptor is imperfect at the advent, Bernie was too old and a socialist and…that didn’t stop him from almost getting the nomination.
And then Trump kept rolling over his competitors. How come no Democrat got scared, why did they think this could never happen to them?
And in the general election, the Democrats played by the old rules. It’s all about the ground game, which Trump didn’t have. You play civilly, while Trump is bloviating everywhere. It didn’t work, now what?
You can print the truth in the “New York Times” all day long, it won’t make a difference. It’s not that people didn’t know about Trump’s faux pas, they didn’t care! The right wing has decimated the reputation of the “Times,” however unfairly. But to think it can be resuscitated…
The move to make MSNBC a left wing outlet, to compete with Fox, was a masterstroke. The only problem is television does not control the debate. The internet has been here for decades, and the left wing, although it features numerous blogs, has been left behind.
Did you read any of Hillary’s tweets? Spoken like a robot from “Westworld,” only with less personality. Everybody’s addicted to their phones and the left is oblivious.
The Donald knew it was all about immediacy. With his Twitter account. Direct access to millions. And what do the Democrats do? Laugh and complain!
He’s on to something here folks. Where is the left wing Twitter account everybody is talking about? It doesn’t exist. The Democrats are like a rock band in the age of hip-hop. Remember Geffen Records? Toast of the town and then death when it wasn’t in black music.
And the left is just waiting for the musicians to wake up. But Trump knows they never will, that they do not matter, that they’re business people, with less acumen than he has. Today’s artists color inside the lines while he’s all over the place, kinda like Van Halen with the brown M&M’s. You want a story that can spread, even if the truth is contrary to what the public believes.
And Trump knows it’s about star power. Anybody in the music business will tell you it’s less about talent than star power. But the Democrats ran Hillary Clinton because it was her turn? It’s like trying to get Donnie Wahlberg to number one today, it just can’t happen. Times change.
So how did the music industry reverse its fortunes?
First of all, it denied there was a problem for a decade, blamed piracy on its audience, unaware of the perspective of consumers.
Consumers were sick and tired of overpaying for one good track on a CD, when they got an alternative, they employed it. But the fat cats in the industry thought they were entitled to the CD paradigm forever. They didn’t even use Napster, they didn’t understand its advantages. The left wing refuses to walk in the Trump voter’s shoes. All the Democrats can do is cross their arms and say Trump voters are idiots, not understanding that they’re worried about their jobs and sick and tired of the left wing playing to special interests that don’t include them. And this applies to all of Washington, the average person thinks the government is both corrupt and ineffective, that’s why they went for an outsider, why Trump overran all his competition. Where is the outsider on the left? Well, there’s kinda one, Elizabeth Warren, who is not afraid to bark back and takes no prisoners, but just like the Republicans, the Democrats are scared of her, do not rally around her, they let her stand on her own. And she’s 67. Who is next?
And then Steve Jobs got the music industry to take a risk, with the iTunes Store.
No one is making the Democrats take a risk, they continue to live in an echo chamber.
And then came Daniel Ek and Spotify. Illustrating that disruption always comes from the outside.
The young Democratic voter demonstrated this, by supporting Bernie, but he was ignored. But he will rise again. In a party that does not want to hear his message.
And, of course, it could be a she too. But there you go again, Democrats. So busy playing by rules most don’t care about that you’re marginalized.
Human rights are important. As are gender rights. Everybody should be protected. But if this is your main message, you’re screwed. Everybody was lining up with hosannas that we would finally have a woman President. Sometime, we will. But Hillary was a bad candidate. The public had no problem electing a black man, it’s the person, not the color or the gender. But it’s easier to blame it on sex than look at the real issues.
The Democrats are a rearguard party that have lost touch with their principles. They used to be for the working man, the downtrodden, their goal was to lift everybody up. Now they’ve left these same people behind, and they turned on them.
This is not about fake news. This is not about the Russians. Why the left refuses to look at itself, I do not know. Instead of reading the “New York Times” they should be studying business, the aforementioned Clayton Christensen, then again, the “New Yorker” famously printed an article saying disruption does not exist.
The truth is the rich have gotten richer and jobs are disappearing and it’s only getting worse. And the disaffected are not looking for platitudes, but solutions. And the left wing is proffering few.
Yes, Obama passed health care. Yes, if it disappears it will be to the detriment of millions. But the person working for a living just can’t make it here anymore. Kinda like that James McMurtry song, wherein he catalogued the travails of the working class. Once upon a time that was a left wing number, but now “We Can’t Make It Here” is the story of the right. How they’re working at Wal-Mart without any upward mobility. Meanwhile, the elite Democrats are laughing at them.
But the people who elected Trump do not see him as an elite. They know he’s flawed, but they’re counting on him to make change. Look at the voters, not the man they put in office. And know that there’s nothing wrong with protests, stand up for your rights, but you’ve got to admit you played it wrong and start over employing today’s tools, getting ahead of the populace.
But the Democrats refuse to do this.
By Bob Lefsetz
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