Rachel Maddow says the Democrats were going to lose because they were brave enough to put policy before politics (never mind that their policies were their politics). Which was mighty big of them. Next time, one hopes, the liberals will be smart enough to put their politics first. Will Maddow hold Obama, Pelosi and Reid accountable for being so foolish?
No, she spends 15 minutes, some with "historian" Michael Beschloss, showing how typical yet brave such behavior is. She points out many things liberals were able to get done.
Like passing a healthcare bill. The same bill that her colleague at MSNBC, Keith Olbermann, spent twelve minutes in December decrying because it was a watered-down mess of compromised horribleness. He also hoped it wouldn't pass. It is rare indeed when Mr. Olbermann and me agree on anything politically, even if our varied means don't jibe with out common ends.
They also passed that stimulus bill that, not to put too fine a point on it, hasn't worked. Again with the strange bedfellows, Paul Krugman and I are in complete agreement. Of course, he thinks it hasn't worked because it wasn't big enough and that the Democrats were destined to lose because they weren't bold enough (here and here). I, on the other hand, come down on the side that the idea of spending your way in hopes of ending a recession is pretty stupid. Mr. Krugman also thinks that historians will look at the election of 2010 as a "catastrophe for America." We'll see.
So the Democrats lost because they sacrificed themselves in order to do great things, putting their policies before their politics (and a nice religious metaphor). Yet the great things they accomplished weren't great at all because they were bastardized by politics (a nod to Thomas Friedman's desire for autocracy). So they lost because they were bold. And they lost because they weren't bold enough.
I think they lost because they did exactly what they said they were going to do. I'm not necessarily happy that the Republicans won, but I'm pretty jazzed up over the fact that the Democrats lost.