The politician was charismatic California Congresswoman Maxine Waters. She visited Connecticut three times in recent weeks to shepherd Ned Lamont through urban black neighborhoods to build support for his ultimately successful challenge to three-term Sen. Lieberman.Waters walked in on the celebration and manic keyboard-clicking going on in the "blogger" room at the Sheraton, a room separate from the more sedate, supposedly neutral "media" room for mainstream press reporters. A cottage industry of local Connecticut and national liberal bloggers sprang up around the Lamont campaign. It built the early support, helped frame the message, elicited thousands of volunteers and donors, and dogged Lieberman's every step.Upon Waters' approach, the blog room erupted in cheers. Then a hush spread among the bloggers, excepting for the clicks of digital cameras."Do you know what you have done?" Waters asked them. "You have upset the status quo, for real. You have given me faith that change is possible."Her parting message: "Keep on blogging! You're gonna change the world!"
We are happy to see that Waters has caught up, so to speak, with a fresh new website and outlook on digital life. We got worried there for a second and hope that this will encourage her staff to keep their political storefront updated on the regular. An inactive website does nothing but reflect an inactive representative and advocate ...
On blogging: yeah, we heard, it's all the rave. Everybody and their cousin is into it. That's all good, cause it makes the world a little smaller and transcends those bitter racial, social, and economic lines. It also gives everyone a voice to which an elected official should be held accountable. To some degree, it's very encouraging to see all these cats blogging. But, to a certain degree, we're a bit cautious about it (even though we do it, too). Will old fashion, eye-to-eye, in-your-face, trust-factor campaigning get replaced by a distant, removed and remote control political machine? There is the danger of some bizarre twist to this, as though blogging may evolve into something we might regret. You now have a situation where some fast-typing, blog-happy, lap-top-potato jock and his/her band of blogging misfits will determine from afar who is the best representative for a district, state, city or county that they don't live in.
And, there's still that impression that blogging - like the modern American political landscape - is still grossly dominated by the two partisan juggernauts and their usual ideological pimp show. It's bad enough the body politic is already distant, removed and remotely controlling.