There seems to be a lot of emphasis on party lines this year from the democratic side of the house. I hear a lot of words used interchangably that are perhaps an oversimplification of the voting public this year. Liberal is equal to Progressive. Neoconservative is equal to Conservative. With barriers falling all over the place, everyone is tagged and labeled and stuck in a box. Yet somehow noone talks about how Reagan Democrats and Obama Republicans are basically the same group of moderates who lead to landslide victories in American presidential politics.
The quality of political analysis on the left and right is just plain sad with a few notable exceptions such as Keith Olbermann and Bill Moyers.
I guess that brings me to the area of Assumptions and how I see them being as damaging on the left as they have been on the right. The democratic party rises in popularity across the political spectrum. It is incubment upon those long-time party members to mind their manners and recognize that some of their guests might be a little shell-shicked from the ass kicking the neoconservatives have given the republican party faithful for 40 years.
It is helpful to remember that “liberals” are supposed to be the empathetic ones in our system.
There is a huge shift in American politics right now. It is happening on the left and the right. The vast silent majority in the middle, asleep for too long, is starting to look for solutions to the problems we can no longer ignore. They have all had different labels during their lives. Some may have even been registered as a democrat, an independent and a republican at times in his life.
Hell, some may have even joined the republican party as recently as a month ago, because it is the party on its way out of power that is easiest to change. The hysterical mob mentality among some democrats for the taking of republican heads didn’t help make the democrat’s case either. I was done being an independent and identify with a more measured approach to crafting solutions. O believe in stronger state governments as originally called for in our Constitution. The smaller the budget, the less the corruption. Evolution, not Revolution.
Republicans come in all shapes and sizes.
As do democrats, making their job even harder. They must continue to push for a very progressive agenda in a dividedcountry and from within a party not too long off the corporate teat. The democratic party isn’t nearly as innocent in our decline as their marketing might suggest.
For independents, I would say pick a party and drive it toward instant run-off voting mand progressive change. That is the only way we get a new political system – change it from within. The time to sit on the fence is long past. we only win with numbers.
The GOP is more in need of moderates than the democrats. Independents seem to be a little more open minded as well and more solution focused, which is what we need to convince mainstream republicans that a progressive party is possible. Not only possible, but invevitable given the republican party’s rich past and roots in our very founding.
Both democrats and republicans must continue to change their parties to refelct the enormous challenges we face. Both parties must be well managed and forward thinking if we are to succeed. It isn’t enough for just the democrats to succeed. One pary rule still leaves half the country on the sidelines. We can still work toward common goals, though with different methods or from a different point of view.
There is no reason why the fight between democrats and republicans can’t be over tactics and not long-term strategic goals. We can craft a future that has republicans and democrats arguing over who is most progressive and has the most sustainable policies. That means progressive on both sides of the political spectrum need to focus on changing both parties from within and give each other enough space to make the transformation possible.
NEWS FLASH: Please note that most republicans who support Obama don’t buy into the same silly Limbaugh talking points and will be happy to debate policy details all day long if you lay off the personal attacks that “all republicans” are this way or that.Most Americans don’t vote, so no party has a majority of anything except people who are hurting and haven’t really paid attention before this year.
We have a huge influx of new voters on the left and right which will reshape the electoral map this year. It also can’t be seen by polls because the “likely voter” card is played over and over, missing a huge swath of this year’s likely voters. Right now, good manners and a gracious welcome from the democratic party will go a long way toward making the current trends in the republican party continue in the right direction.
Please be understanding if the republicans you stumble across are still shaking off the programming and need to be convinced despite their wounds. Human psychology is always messy. It may take some genuine success on the part of an Obama administration to really get the changes to take root. It will certainly take patience on everyone’s part if we are going to fix this country and not drive it deeper into dustbin of history.
It is essential that we get this right to ensure our survival as a species, let alone as a nation.