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"America has two great dominant strands of political thought - conservatism, which, at its very best, draws lines that should not be crossed; and progressivism, which, at its very best, breaks down barriers that should never have been erected." -- Bill Clinton, Dedication of the Clinton Presidential Library, November 2004

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Wednesday, July 30, 2003


Really On the Road with Howard Dean

posted by annatopia at Wednesday, July 30, 2003 permalink View blog reactions
This is a follow up to Scott's earlier post. To quote reader cricket, who said in response to the original Suellentrop article, "My jaw dropped when I read this." Maybe there's something in the air on the McBus, but it seems like we might have a full-blown convert. Sure, the article drips with the usual snark and sarcasm, but it's funny. And the big plus is that it reflects the fact that not only is Dean able to work with the press, he's capable of charming them:

At this point in the trip, I’m in the midst of a full-fledged Dean swoon. Sure, I think he’s pandering on ethanol, his claim that he’s going to bring in 3 million to 4 million new voters to win the election sounds far-fetched, and his idea to raise $100 each from 1 million voters sounds perilously close to Orrin Hatch’s “skinny cat” flop from four years ago. But I like him anyway. Barring an implosion like the one McCain had when he attacked Pat Robertson in Virginia Beach, I think Dean has a real chance to win the nomination.

Suellentrop and Dean also had a conversation about NAFTA and fair trade, in which Dean expanded on his trade philosophy. Suellentrop puts Dean's theory in a nutshell:

Dean’s theory in a nutshell: The structure of wealth in the United States before labor unions resembled that in Third World countries today, so in order to create middle classes in the developing world, we need to bring labor unions to them.

This is accurate based on what Dean's said from day one, and it's a pretty sound theory if you look historically at the relation between economic and social development (I'm sure Gabriel will jump in if I'm wrong on this one). Dean told Suellentrop a story about a conversation with former Treasury Secretary Robert Rubin in which Rubin affirmed Dean's analysis of the current economic situation. Read it yourself - it's an interesting story - and then let's hear what you think about Suellentrop's portrayal of Dean on the campaign trail.


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About Nation-Building

Nation-Building was founded by Aziz Poonawalla in August 2002 under the name Dean Nation. Dean Nation was the very first weblog devoted to a presidential candidate, Howard Dean, and became the vanguard of the Dean netroot phenomenon, raising over $40,000 for the Dean campaign, pioneering the use of Meetup, and enjoying the attention of the campaign itself, with Joe Trippi a regular reader (and sometime commentor). Howard Dean himself even left a comment once. Dean Nation was a group weblog effort and counts among its alumni many of the progressive blogsphere's leading talent including Jerome Armstrong, Matthew Yglesias, and Ezra Klein. After the election in 2004, the blog refocused onto the theme of "purple politics", formally changing its name to Nation-Building in June 2006. The primary focus of the blog is on articulating purple-state policy at home and pragmatic liberal interventionism abroad.