Dartmouth's Daily Blog
News, commentary, criticism and praise for the College on the Hill, enlivened with history, culture and travel when we feel so moved.
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The Democrat(ic?) Party
I was reading a recent CNN article when I got to thinking about just how much democracy there is the so-called democratic Democratic primaries. As the article makes clear in detailing America ‘s left-wing party ‘s rules for primary election, democracy seems not to be the ranking ideal, for good or ill.
First there is the issue of €œsuper-delegates, € former office holders and party officials who are free to vote for whomever they choose. Of these folks there are about 800. Rather than necessarily reflecting the popular choice, these delegates can simply vote their own conscience.
Second there is the issue that even €œpledged delegates € do not necessarily reflect the balance of popular vote either. In the Nevada caucuses, for example, Clinton won the popular vote by 6 or so points, yet Obama came away with 1 more pledged delegate.
To move from a discussion of the essentials of Democracy to the comparably petty realm of politics, there is the funny question of the name of the Democrat(ic?) Party. Hendrik Hertzberg gives an enlightening analysis of The €œIc € Factor in a 2006 New Yorker article. William F. Buckley, Jr. described referencing the party as €˜Democrat ’ amounted to €œinjecting politics into language. € With the Frank Luntzes of the world and their Words That Work (see the €œdeath tax € and €œpersonal retirement accounts €) it is becoming increasing hard to separate words and ideas (on the left and right).
Whether Democrat Party is folksy shorthand or an intentionally grating slur or a deeper comment about the true level of democracy in the Party, the Democrat(ic) primaries do not seem to be entirely democratic. Stay tuned for perhaps a future post about whether the Republican primaries should be considered democratic or, for that matter, republican.
August 14, 2013
Breaking: Of Crips and Bloods and Memories of Ghetto Parties
History repeats itself, first as tragedy and then as farce, or sometimes it just repeats itself. From the New York Times on November 30, 1998: At Dartmouth College, white students at a ”ghetto party” dressed…
June 25, 2013
Dean of the College Charlotte Johnson’s War on Students Part (2/2)
Part 1, Part 2 Today’s post again recounts the events that befell the Freshman. However, the content of the Hanover Police department report reproduced in this space yesterday is supplemented by information from my own…
October 18, 2009
When Love Beckoned in 52nd Street
We were at San Francisco’s BIX last evening, enjoying prosecco, cheese, and a bit of music. A full year of inhabitation in Northern California has unraveled to me no decent venue for proper lounging, but…
October 9, 2009
D Afraid of a Little Competish
So our colleague and Dartblog writer Joe Asch informed me that the D has rejected our cunning advertising campaign. Uh-oh. The Dartmouth is widely known as a breeding ground for instant New York Times successes,…
September 4, 2009
How Regents Should Reign
As Dartmouth alumni proceed through the legal hoops necessary to defuse a Board-packing plan—which put in unhappy desuetude an historic 1891 Agreement between alumni and the College guaranteeing a half-democratically-elected Board of Trustees—it strikes one…
August 29, 2009
Election Reform Study Committee
If you are an alum of the College on the Hill, you may have received a number of e-mails of late beseeching your input for a new arm of the College’s Alumni Control Apparatus called…
- The Dartmouth College Case
- 2007 Trustee Election
- Dartmouth Constitution
- Sunday Morning Sinatra
- The Indian Wars
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