Functional Form

Avoiding side-effects since 2004.

Sunday, August 06, 2006

Missing the point completely yet again.

The traditional media's analysis of the CT senate primary as an instance of "liberal blogs dragging the party to the left" seems to ignore the fact that current polls reflect a majority opposition to the war. If blogs are dragging the Democratic Party anywhere, they're dragging it to be more in line with the sentiments of the majority of the country. What the Washington establishment (both politicians and journalists) need to realize is that Internet activism is a fundamentally new phenomenon. The people whose voices are now being heard online are nothing like elitist left-wing interest groups of the past. New technology is bringing about a new paradigm that still confuses politicians and pundits. Ordinary individuals are more empowered than ever before to share their ideas and communicate with one another without intermediaries. This power to communicate has never existed, and the old guard can't see a revolution taking place right in front of their noses because they still can't wrap their minds around the implications of that power. They try to interpret new realities within old frameworks, and naturally fail to produce relevant insight. It is not the 1970s. History is not repeating itself. Until pundits begin to address Internet-based power as a fundamentally new force on the social and political landscape, they will continue to misinterpret events.