Thursday, December 11, 2014

Greider: How The Democratic Party Lost Its Soul

Avedon Carol at Sideshow points us to an article at The Nation by William Greider (bio, blog... I normally link to Wikipedia bio's, but the one for Greider is an irredeemable right-wing hit job) on How the Democratic Party Lost Its Soul. Here's an excerpt to give you the flavor:

William Greider
The blowout election of 2014 demonstrates that the Democratic Party is utterly out of touch with ordinary people and their adverse circumstances. Working people have known this for some time now, but this year, the president made the disconnection more obvious. Barack Obama kept telling folks to brighten up: the economy is coming back, he said, and prosperity is just around the corner.

A party truly connected to the people would never have dared to make such a claim. In the real world of voters, human experience trumps macroeconomics and the slowly declining official unemployment rate. An official at the AFL-CIO culled the following insights from what voters said about themselves on Election Day: 54 percent suffered a decline in household income during the past year. Sixty-three percent feel the economy is fundamentally unfair. Fifty-five percent agree strongly (and another 25 percent agree somewhat) that both political parties are too focused on helping Wall Street and not enough on helping ordinary people.

Instead of addressing this reality and proposing remedies, the Democrats ran on a cowardly, uninspiring platform: the Republicans are worse than we are. Undoubtedly, that’s true—but so what? The president and his party have no credible solutions to offer. To get serious about inequality and the deteriorating middle class, Democrats would have to undo a lot of the damage their own party has done to the economy over the past thirty years.

I couldn't have said it better myself. If Democrats want to keep the White House in 2016, they must do a great deal better than they did in 2014, and I don't mean just in the poll numbers. Democrats must give working Americans something real to vote for. Nobody gives a (bleep!) about Obama's "let us reason together" blather; they want jobs with middle-class incomes and benefits, and retirement plans adequate to live on. They want honest housing loans that do not get yanked out from under them like a cheap rug. No amount of flim-flam will turn working voters into Democrats if they don't get those things.

Another word to TPTB in the Democratic Party: Hillary ain't gonna cut it. Republicans have successfully undercut whatever virtues she may have. "Her turn"? FTS! No one owns a major party's support for a presidential run at this early stage. If Dems nominate Hillary, GOPers will run against Bill's sex life... you're right, that's grossly unfair, but don't count on that stopping today's Rethuglicans. They'll do it. And they'll win.

I am not yet committed to Sen. Elizabeth Warren, but if she chooses to run (no certainty at the moment) I am more than willing to hear what she has to say. Short of a miracle — and she may be able to work one — I am afraid the Dems have already lost it, two years out.

[SB wanders off muttering @#$%^&*!@#$%...]


  1. " Hillary ain't gonna cut it." Ain't that the truth! Take care my friend. peace Michael

    1. karmanot, it's good to see you out and about these days!

      Hillary is part of the good Democratic Party gone bad, or if not bad, at least absorbed into the Republican way of doing things, i.e., pay-to-play. For the sake of women's rights, I'll vote for her if I have to, but I think we must at least try to get a genuine progressive into the race, probably Elizabeth Warren.

      Some of us thought we were getting a progressive when Obama ran and said all the right things, but he hasn't backed up his speeches with comparable actions, damn it. I'm not quite ready to give up hope yet, but it's hard to keep hold of hope under these circumstances.



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