Two points you brought up Jeff that i thought are worth responding too.
"Most of that, however, is generational work. It is tedious, expensive and slow moving. You're talking about changing a couple of centuries of ideas that people take for granted. You're talking about changing the thinking of millions of people all at the same time."
Not so. It was the boomers who, as a generation, reversed gears and elected Reagan and all that it represented. Reagan was a turning point, in my book, that ushered in a trove of right wing grift and faux freedom language. Even his own age demographic didn't support him. So how does your generational theory square a rejection of Keynesian economic theory and labor movement struggle being rejected in one generations time? Why is it incrementalism for liberal progressives and death of a thousand cut but 'revolution' for conservatives Jeff?....
"In the end, what Republicans do is capitalize on this and use it to their advantage. This time, that gambit didn't work as well as they hoped. This time, a lot of very liberal committed soldiers found their way into Democratic Party seats.
You may want to tip your hat grudgingly to acknowledge that. But I could be wrong wink"
An embryonic number of committed progressives were elected to congress Jeff but it was not due to the institutional structure of the Democratic party. Instead it was mainly do to the long hard work of street level organizing, canvassing and get out the vote efforts on behalf of committed volunteers backed by separate funding sources than the customary traditional 'dialing for dollars' DNC. One could also request you tip YOUR hat to these progressive grass root efforts that got this small group of progressives elected to congress as well as many more down ballot victories. Victories that were won in regions that the upper class DNC had walked away from and written off as hopeless. That should be telling you something in and of itself about the DNC makeup and direction. Don't equate progressive victories to the upper corporate party leadership.