In addition to being characteristically twitty and substance-free, Dowd's column is also an occasion for her to promote vicious memes about Democrats. And that's the nature of Dowd's power, her special gift: even though she plainly isn't knowledgable (or even well-informed) about politics or public policy, she is a very, very talented crafter and promoter of successful memes, or images, about politicians and political parties.
Here's Dowd's opening paragraph:
There was a touch of parody to the giddy Democrat takeover this week: Nancy Pelosi indulging her inner Haight-Ashbury and dipping the Capitol in tie-dye, sashaying around with the Grateful Dead, Wyclef Jean, Carole King, Richard Gere, feminists and a swarm of well-connected urchins.This is how Dowd portrays Democrats: ridiculous, San Francisco-based, childish, unserious, self-indulgent, beholden to feminists and movie stars and stoners. Needless to say, Dowd's opening paragraph is entirely gratuitous and totally substance-free -- but it sets the stage for any discussion of Democrats by Dowd: first, they must be ridiculed.
After the ritualistic mockery, Dowd makes stuff up in order to promote the idea of Democrats-as-hypocrites:
This is pure, unadulterated bullshit. The Democrats did not campaign on a blanket promise to "govern with bipartisan comity." Rather, Pelosi and Congressional Democrats explicitly campaigned on a promise to enact new legislation to "drain the [GOP] swamp" within the first 100 hours after assuming control of the House!
The first act of House Democrats who promised to govern with bipartisan comity was imperiously banishing Republicans from participating in the initial round of lawmaking. Even if Republicans were brutes during their reign, Democrats should have shown more class, letting the whiny minority party offer some stupid amendments that would lose.
Was Maureen Dowd actually unaware of the Democrats' 100 Hours pledge? Or did she know about it but choose to misrepresent the facts instead, to conform them to the vicious spin she was promoting? And which would be worse, rank incompetence or gross dishonesty? For what it's worth, the Democrats' 100 Hours platform was hardly a secret -- here is an excerpt from an AP article by David Espo published in the Washington Post on October 10, 2006:
WASHINGTON -- Franklin Roosevelt had his first hundred days.To summarize: Maureen Dowd misrepresented the facts -- just invented her own facts -- in order to portray the Democrats' fulfillment of a clearly-articulated campaign promise as hypocritical and lacking in "class." Could Maureen Dowd possibly be a bigger hack?
House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi is thinking 100 hours, time enough, she says, to begin to "drain the swamp" after more than a decade of Republican rule.
As in the first 100 hours the House meets after Democrats _ in her fondest wish _ win control in the Nov. 7 midterm elections and Pelosi takes the gavel as the first Madam Speaker in history.
Day One: Put new rules in place to "break the link between lobbyists and legislation."
Day Two: Enact all the recommendations made by the commission that investigated the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.
Time remaining until 100 hours: Raise the minimum wage to $7.25 an hour, maybe in one step. Cut the interest rate on student loans in half. Allow the government to negotiate directly with the pharmaceutical companies for lower drug prices for Medicare patients.
Broaden the types of stem cell research allowed with federal funds _ "I hope with a veto-proof majority," she added in an Associated Press interview Thursday.
All the days after that: "Pay as you go," meaning no increasing the deficit, whether the issue is middle class tax relief, health care or some other priority.
Here is Dowd's concluding line about Nancy Pelosi and the Democrats:
Now that's rich! Maureen Dowd -- vacuous, vicious and utterly indifferent to the truth -- thinks that the Democrats suffer from some sort of "disorder."
Perhaps the Democrats’ power-shift into overdrive is a neurological disorder, or neuropolitical disorder.