Leftist “Extremism” and Liberal Abandonment

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Presidential primary season is still about a year off and already the punditry are in full throat. The right is, of course, prepping for a fight with Hillary Clinton, the prodigal lefty that never saw a “centrist” position she did not like, at least after running for Senate. I remember the Hillary that sought real health care reform in this country as First Lady, the woman who was not afraid of the words “socialized medicine.” She is long gone and we will never see her again. Properly chastised by her husband’s new-found pals in the financial industry, the same pals that led his predecessor and successor down the path to deregulation, the once anti-war Mrs. Rodham-Clinton embraced her inner chicken hawk as both a Senator and Secretary of State. We can be assured of a continuation of this under President Rodham-Clinton. Something we on the left will be expected to be grateful for because, you know, the alternative.

Well I can’t be grateful for that anymore. I know ideological purity can be taken too far in judging a candidate or a party. I was pretty enraged over the Green Party’s hammering of the WFP over the latter’s decision to endorse Andrew Cuomo. Sometimes you have to make the ugly choice, and sometimes you do get bit by it and hopefully learn. I believe the WFP has, but the Democrats have been veering right since before Slick Willy and show little to no interest in correcting that.

Sure they talk a good game on social issues. They are for hate crime legislation, except when they are not. They push for LGBT rights, except when they don’t. On economic issues though, they are consistently acting contrary to their platform. They talk about raising minimum wage, but drag their feet and give way to little, way too late. They talk undoing deregulation, but look to Wall Street fat cats to help them decide economic policy. They trash Republicans, rightly, for being eager to go to war but then seek a broad authorization for the use of force against a group that has yet to project any force beyond their region.

So we are stuck, once again, with the lesser of two evils and I cannot find that acceptable. Worse, I find it utterly reprehensible that I am reading on social media the ground work for blaming a Democratic loss in ’16 on the left. Discussions turn around to ’00 when Al Gore beat himself in what should not have been a close race that ended up being decided by the SCotUS. He ran away from any association with a generally popular President because he did not want to lose the other guys’ base. Never mind losing his own. It was his race to lose and lose it he did because he came off as a petulant punk in debates and did not tout the prosperity (at least from a big “C” Capitalist perspective) that we were enjoying under the aforementioned generally popular President. But no, it was Ralph Nader and the Greens fault for taking a handful of votes in Florida.

“The Left is too extreme” we are told by Democratic faithful “they want too much.” As if demanding we not throw the most vulnerable in our society under the bus in the name of “tax reform” or insisting we not put people in economic bondage just to take care of their health or education is some sort of extreme view. It is a sad state of affairs when the conservative parties in other prosperous nations are farther to the left than our supposed left-wing, but there it is and for wanting that to change we are branded naive at best and traitors at worst.

I won’t be so bold as to brand the Democratic faithful traitors. I will, however, call most of them cowards. So afraid of losing their privilege these people will twist logic like silly putty, insisting that in order to beat the Right we have to be the Right. They drop right-wing catch phrases like “fiscal responsibility” and “personal accountability” as readily as any Randian cultist from the Tea Party and then turn around and wonder why the disenfranchised in America are turning their backs on them. I for one do not blame the poor, racially oppressed, religiously abused, gender shackled masses for turning their backs on these folks. I blame the “liberals” for turning their backs on their ideas, and leaving these people, in a world where corporate media rarely lets them see the terms “Green,” “Working Families,” or “Socialist” in anything but the most unflattering light, if they see them at all, with little to no options. We need a populist uprising in America, and it sure as hell won’t come from the DNC.

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