The Battle and the War
Posted by Heather Hurlburt
Over at the Democratic Strategist, a new webzine showcase for progressive minds like Ruy Teixeira, Bill Galston and others, I'm involved in a roundtable on that hardy perennial, "whither Democrats and national security?"
Here on our non-partisan site, it's just a useful opportunity to recall that, however much foreign policy gets pulled into elections these days, the results mirror the public's views on issues and priorities through a glass darkly at best. Really producing a broadening in public thinking -- or rather, giving the public a chance and a voice to express the broader views that emerge in deliberative polling or town hall exercises -- requires a kind of progressive and bipartisan activism that's rather different from election-time talking points.
--making the effort to weave diverse bits of activism into a common narrative -- for example, the relationship among AIDS, poverty and security, or among oil prices, global warming and the innovation economy -- and then referencing that narrative whenever possible;
--committing to talk about foreign policy in ways regular folks can relate to, and starting where they are, not where we wish they were;
-- and committing to talk to regular folks about foreign policy all the time, not just in election years.