Friday, July 01, 2005
Fasten Your Seat Belts
If you don't think you've witnessed new media change politics yet, this is the time to start paying attention.
Within an hour of the announcement of Justice O'Connor's retirement, the blogs (namely, Daily Kos) were filled with speculation that -- all in all -- had the mainstream media beat in its depth. Keep in mind that the media have been preparing for this day for years -- note that all the slick graphics reading "A Change on the Supreme Court" were ready to go. And yet their analysis was still very easy, even weak (I'm saying this having witnessed CNN's coverage and perused the sites of some major newspapers). While the MSM seem to be a bit caught a bit off-guard by an O'Connor retirement (and not a Rehnquist retirement, as was expected by everyone including some prominent senators and the White House, according to Red State), the blogs were able to adapt quickly and with depth. See Kos or Red State.
And action on the blogs is the least of what we're about to see...
I know People for the American Way have a myriad of ways people can "act now" before there's even a nominee to fight (I'm all for preparedness, but doesn't this exacerbate the perception of Dems as obstructionists). Currently, they're using a $10 and 10 pitch, asking for $10 donations and the names of 10 friends. At the very least, they should be boosting their mailing list quite a bit during the impending battle.
More interestingly, though, they have set up a Mass Immediate Response system that will send breaking news and action alerts to your cell phone and e-mail. I'm sure the other side of the aisle has some similar programs. If you're passionate about this stuff, or if you're just interested in seeing what strategy these groups have developed, I'd recommend signing up.
On a related note, Bush has said there will be no nominee announcement before July 8. So, this has a lot of time to stew around in the blogs. This is sure to spark some fun conversation around the BBQ this weekend. There will be fireworks, indeed.
UPDATE: I tried to post this around 1 p.m., but Blogger was down for some reason...could it be an overload of people weighing in? Yeah, probably not. But wouldn't that have been an interesting piece of trivia.