If the opportunity cost of engaging with Versailles is almost always too great -- and I think that it is, because the rot is all too evident* -- is there any reason (for me; or you) to blog about national politics and/or the legacy parties at all?
The access bloggers and the commentariat are perfectly capable of advocating powerfully for their legacy party of choice, for money, so why should I help them out for free? What value do I add by reinforcing the discourse of Versailles? For myself or for others? What value do any of us add? Surely there are more interesting things to blog about, where I can make a real difference?
Consider, again: Health care reform should have been a relatively tractable problem; the policies to follow are obvious, as soon as you look at the evidence. Yet Versailles didn't deliver on it. In particular, the Dems -- who a lot of us have been seriously invested in since, oh, 2000 -- didn't deliver on health care reform, after we gave them everything they claimed they needed to deliver change: The House, the Presidency, and 60 votes in the Senate.**
How much less, then, will the Versailles be able to deliver on less tractable issues like financial reform, lancing the boil of the empire, or climate change? Versailles will not be able to. In fact, Versailles gives not the slightest sign of even wanting to try.
So why invest time, or, if you have it, money with them? They're not investing in us. I've already turned off the teebee. I'm thinking I need to turn off Versailles as well; it's a closed system, it's stifling me, and I need to open the window and feel the breeze!
Readers, thoughts? (I'm not really asking this question for others; just for me.)
NOTE * As a friend of mine says, "It's not even good kabuki!"
NOTE ** Now they're telling us that they not only need 60 votes, but public pressure to change their own internal procedures. It's always something. An ever-receding possibility of somethings: If only we sign another online petition, buy another commemorative plate, "stand with" this or that "Hollywood for ugly People"-type celebrity today... Jam yesterday, jam tomorrow, but never jam today.
UPDATE On consideration, I should say that I don't want anybody to think that all the work we did on single payer, for example, was futile. Quite the contrary. It was not futile for us. At a minimum, we set the record straight and developed powerful analytical tools. More, we opened, or at least made visible, cracks in the Dem base (as well as the shoddiness of access blogging). At a maximum, we're at the start of a some sort of movement (though I'm not smart enough to figure out what kind). But we should consider going around Versailles, instead of besieging it or attempting to storm it. Let it rot, and fall off the vine.
UPDATE I might have killed off these:
What I'm really saying, thought, is that Versailles and its media organs have way too much of my mindshare. Even when I'm doing Kremlinology.