Well, look at this: I did read and am now linking to a NY Times op-ed column, because I agree with it and have been saying this for sometime, only not as well. David Brooks today debunks the power of netroots and endorses of the power of the center and Hillary Clinton’s dominance of it. That’s why Bill Clinton still holds a special spot in the admiration of many — because we respect the center. He writes:
The fact is, many Democratic politicians privately detest the netroots’ self-righteousness and bullying. They also know their party has a historic opportunity to pick up disaffected Republicans and moderates, so long as they don’t blow it by drifting into cuckoo land. They also know that a Democratic president is going to face challenges from Iran and elsewhere that are going to require hard-line, hawkish responses.
Finally, these Democrats understand their victory formula is not brain surgery. You have to be moderate on social issues, activist but not statist on domestic issues and hawkish on foreign policy. This time they’re not going to self-destructively deviate from that.
Both liberals and Republicans have an interest in exaggerating the netroots’ influence, but in reality that influence is surprisingly marginal, even among candidates for whom you’d think it would be strong.
My fear is that commentators equate the internet with netroots and will try to marginalize the large, large tree above those small roots.