Yeah, I was among those hoodwinked during Jerry Brown's campaign for the office of California Attorney General. I took him at his word that he would be the voice of common sense and temperance. But, Manhattan Institute's Walter Olson says lots of others were too, including the SAN DIEGO UNION-TRIBUNE.
The editors at the UNION-TRIBUNE 'fessed up in an August 10th editorial that they believed Candidate Brown when he put the knock on grandstanding state AGs such as the incumbent Bill Lockyer. Brown also derided Lockyer's public nuisance lawsuit of automakers for global warming.
Brown has not only continued Lockyer's lawsuit. He has set loose his staff of 1100 lawyers to apply AB 32 - CA's anti-greenhouse gas emissions bill - to just about everything. No surprise, last week it was revealed that Brown was considering running for CA guv again. Grandstanding is an understatement.
On the other hand, you can say that Brown was emotionally intelligent aka smart political pol to tell important constituencies such as the media what they wanted to hear. Not enough Dems do that, says Drew Westen in his new book "The Political Brain: The Role of Emotion in Deciding The Fate Of the Nation." Because they don't, emphasizes Westen, Dems lose elections more than they win them. Unlike the disciplined GOP Message Machine that plays directly to and on voters' emotions, Dems want to keep campaigning to a focus on the facts, on policy arguments and not on manipulating emotions. Brown won. He also won a whole bunch of other offices in CA.
Perhaps we can stop the Brown types before they get elected by figuring out what emotions they are tapping into and short-circuiting their ability to play with them. That could be called Emotional Outings. We can do that with humor on YouTube, our own blogs, interviews with mainstream media, and some juicy street theatre. Westen's next book will be on how to deal with Emotional Outings.