Conservatives' response is a preemptive "nah, nah, can't hear you!" They contend that no matter how big progressives may win on Election Day, this is nonetheless a center-right nation.This is an extension of the conservative philosophy whereby ideology trumps reality, anecdote over outcomes. If they keep beating this drum, they expect that it will become the truth. That methodology has worked in the past. The trouble is, we, as a nation, are finally awake to this myth-making. And the press is on to it as well.
Indeed, a LexisNexis search shows this poll-tested term — "center-right nation" — is lately among the Punditburo's most ubiquitous Orwellian buzzwords. From a Newsweek cover story by conservative dittohead Jon Meacham to a Wall Street Journal screed by former Reagan speechwriter Peggy Noonan to a Politico.com diatribe by former Rudy Giuliani aide John Avlon, the "center-right nation" phrase is being parroted with the propagandistic discipline of Cuba's Ministry of Information.
"As the Republican ticket continues to run against the very idea of progressive politics, they are sowing the seeds of the post-election realignment narrative," writes The Atlantic's Marc Ambinder, adding that a McCain loss in such an ideologically polarized contest means "Democrats can justifiably claim that conservatism itself has been rejected."
That would be the very mandate for "direct, vigorous action" Roosevelt described in his 1933 inaugural address. Should a President Obama try to capitalize on it, he will have nothing to fear but fear itself.