In the first paragraph, we begin with a wry joke, acknowledging that the way this accelerated media age allows no respite at the end of one election cycle before proceeding headlong into the next is a mild form of platform abuse that is unkind to media consumers. It will be followed by a quick pivot, acknowledging our intention to proceed headlong into the next election cycle anyway, because it is a fundamental part of "driving the discussion" and "establishing the narrative."
In the next paragraph, we shall sum up the events of last night's election, casting it as a set of fundamental changes that forever alter the expectations going into 2012. The party that primarily lost last night has a set of new headwinds, typified by the trendlets whose importance we have magnified, above and beyond a discussion of the fundamentals that have been baked into the results since the beginning of the year. (Any mention of the massive unemployment crisis shall be in the abstract -- we have no intention or desire to get heavily invested in the lives of ordinary Americans, least of all those who are poor or have no job.)
This shall be followed by a paragraph featuring anonymous statements from unnamed "strategists" from the winning party. To avoid saying anything definitive that we may later have to answer for, we shall blend one anonymous statement understating the victory and one anonymous statement overstating the victory.
We shall also give the losing party an opportunity to speak to last night's events, and collect the sort of anonymous quote from a hack we have on speed-dial who can be reliably counted on to provide the sort of disingenuous, half-hearted, pleasant sounding spin that is always collected from election-year losers.
Here, we turn our attention to the 2012 electoral field in earnest and generically suggest that the wide field that last night's winners shall feature in the upcoming primary season is a semblance of the strength shown last night, as opposed to a deeply-confused process where people with very little hope of winning higher office temporarily earn a disproportionate share of media attention before settling into their destined role as also-rans.
Here, we shall find, among other things, a furtive attempt to suggest that someone like Tim Pawlenty or Rick Santorum might be the sort of man to capture the imagination of a nation.
With a deep and dramatic breath, the next paragraph will deal exclusively with a particularly nettlesome Discovery channel reality teevee host whose entree into the 2012 race is constantly being speculated upon. We acknowledge here that others have asserted that that particularly nettlesome Discovery channel reality teevee host has a built-in cult of personality and an intriguing potential path to victory.
Because the particularly nettlesome Discovery channel reality teevee host is the sort of person who garners many clicks through Search Engine Optimization, there will be a second paragraph dedicated to the subject, in which we acknowledge the generic hopes of the rest of the GOP that she might somehow be thwarted from participating in the upcoming election.
(Pending editorial input, the author shall consider in advance a way that he can work the particularly nettlesome Discovery channel reality teevee host into the lead paragraph of this piece -- if not the headline -- in anticipation of being asked to do so in order to maximize the potential Search Engine Optimization and "win the afternoon.")
Here we turn our attention to last night's losing party and the occupant of the White House, because if we come off too definitive about their diminished fortunes, we'll risk missing out on planting the "comeback narrative" that we anticipate will, at some point, bloom.
Having set this up, the next paragraph will feature anonymous quotes from White House staffers expressing a fatigued confidence in their fortunes. Additional strategists will reaffirm the disingenuous loser-spin from seven paragraphs ago, and expand upon it by suggesting that the winners from last night might "overplay their hand." This will be backed up with oblique references to Clinton-era showdowns.
A more pugnacious anonymous strategist shall suggest that the opportunity to fight more directly with the opposition party will "clarify" the White House's position and "inspire" his base. One might wonder why the losing party doesn't just set out to lose these sorts of elections as part of this cunning strategy.
Because we must leave out no possibility, we shall pivot in this paragraph and generically wave at the possibility that the occupant of the White House may face some form of opposition in the primary. This is something we acknowledge because it keeps coming up at cocktail parties we attend (Sally Quinn could barely stop yammering about it to listen to Quinn Bradlee's wedding vows, for Pete's sake) and we would like to continue attending those cocktail parties, so we mention it here.
That's followed by a "bringing it all back home" paragraph, where we vague it up even further to allow for all possibilities. Here, some fusty over-quoted academic or historian shall provide both ballast and the first attributed quote of this feature. Some variation on, "Remember, a lot can happen in two years," would be a welcome quote here.
The concluding paragraph will cycle back to the original point made about the way the accelerated news cycle and our lust for broad narratives forces us to turn our attention immediately to the next election season, crafted in such a way that it demonstrates our utter obliviousness to the fact that we are actually indicting ourselves.
[Just below the article copy, include a "Related" link directing people to the article that originally inspired this piece, as a half-assed way of apologizing to the author of the original concept for stealing his idea and debasing it.]
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