Being stuck at one stage in the OODA Loop also means that they are not looking for new actions that might actually be effective. The obvious play right now, faced with a relatively unpopular president whose agenda is bogged down in Congress and who is prone to frequent fits of foolish impulsiveness, is to make yourself seem like the opposite—not the opposite in terms of ideology, but the opposite in terms of seriousness and self-discipline. The play is not merely to go for the center, adopting an agenda that can appeal to some Republicans. The play is to appeal to reasonable people who want something they can support other than blind partisan loyalty.
Instead, Democrats are cocooning themselves in slogans about “resistance” and “persistence,” trapping themselves in a purely reactive approach to Trump. I have suspected for a while that Trump’s election seems to have broken something in the Left, and I think I can finally put my finger on exactly what it is. He so thoroughly seems to confirm all of their fondest caricatures of the Right that they think he excuses them from having to react objectively and thoughtfully to new facts, or from having to understand the actual arguments, ideas, and attitudes of anyone who disagrees with them. This means that they’re not figuring out how to appeal to anyone who is not already with “the resistance.”