Marc Cooper writes on the death of Progressivism
Marc Cooper has an excellent post on the dearth of rational response by a many Democrats/liberals/leftists/progressives to the recent election.
Usually, if you can't find me posting here you can find me commenting in Marc's excellent Blog. Marc is a liberal/progressive in the classical sense of the word and is damn worried about the state of the Democratic Party and their mental masturbation regarding the loss of the last election.
He links to The Nation in a forum in which some 17 authors post a brief (sometimes far too brief - those make sense) and sometimes brief (and still too damn long - the ones that are laughable) discussion of what went wrong and what can be done about it.
I took the time to read each of those articles and some made me think, but too many of them made me wince. Do yourself a favor and read all of them too. The Democratic Party seems hopelessly mired in a psychosis (temporary?) with paranoid ramblings regarding how those evil republicans stole again the election. Either that, or they ramble about the need to talk more about religion. That is part of the problem I think; too many want to talk about religion, not enough want to express sincere religious beliefs and scoff at those who do.
That is just one part of the problem however. In other posts, here, and here and here I talk about some of the issues. Michael Totten has a great compendium also here
As much as I hate to say it however, Marc says it better than I could hope to. Perhaps because he is a real journalist whereas I am just learning this trade. Take the following:
The real issue is that the agenda of "U.S. progressives" is really irrelevant if they continue to be an irrelevant political force. And right now, today, they are. As I wrote in an earlier column, when "progessives" has as their populist face two clowns like M. Moore and Al Franken-- then no wonder their deeper politics fails to resonate. Who are the great populist progressive rabble rouser pols of our time who can walk into a working-class venue anywhere from Detroit to Decatur to Mobile and get a standing ovations? Until you can name that person, American "progressivism" is merely a fantasy that exists only in the pages of The Nation and inside the class rooms of various Critical Studies departments.
Marc is absolutely correct, the nuts like Moore and Franken have hijacked the progressive side of politics and traded heart-felt (though I believe mistaken) positions for quick laughs, scurrilous lies and mean-spirited crap disguised as reasonable positions.
In the "comments" section of Marc's posting, you will find thoughtful responses by Michael J. Totten, by John Moore by a very thoughtful Frydek-Mistek from Czechoslovakia and by Josh Legere. And even a few bombs thrown by me! (Warning! Not all the comments are thoughtful or even useful.)
Now, you may ask why I, a conservative gives a hoot about the Democratic Party and Progressives in particular and any liberal/leftist position in general? Well, the answer is easy; a viable two party (or more) system is vital to the well being of this country. We have seen what happens when a single party holds power for too long, you get tin pots like Johnson, boondoggles like Medicare that may well end up bankrupting the country unless radically reformed, and other gosh awful results - crooks like Nixon as a response to the Johnson mismanagement of the Viet Nam war.
We are now in a position of Republican supremacy, and that worries me a bit. Oh, not that the radical lefties like Kennedy and Pelosi act like they have something stuck in their crop, but because when a single party dominates, only one set of ideas get promulgated. And, with a world wide war on Islamo-Fascism, that can be a disaster.
Be of good cheer however, as an optimist, I believe that eventually the Democrats will reject the Moore's and the Frankin's and get back to the concept of governance. When they do, we will all be better off.