To the Point

There comes a time in every epoch when pragmatism simply evolves into extreme acquiescence and surrender to the forces of apathy and do-nothingness, a guarantor of the status quo in all of its easy, democratic criminality--its fortress of greed. You could line up all the pols in the U.S. in a straight row and examine them head to toe and not find a single man or woman capable of admitting, never mind ending, the corruption of their vocation--Buddy Dooley

Friday, February 17, 2017

Beyond the Democrats

This reflexive defense of the recent status quo is bolstered by inertia, especially at the top of the party. The House Democratic leaders—all septuagenarians—were easily re-elected to their party posts. In the Senate, New York’s Chuck Schumer took over from Harry Reid as minority leader, as long planned. The big outside money is flowing to the same operators (Guy Cecil and David Brock) and the same big institutions (the Center for American Progress, Priorities USA) as before. If Representative Keith Ellison’s effort to head the DNC is defeated, the party structure itself will remain largely in the hands of those who eviscerated it (or their designees). Not surprisingly, these longtime party leaders are invested in what was accomplished under Obama, eager to defend it against Trump’s calumnies, and intent on returning to power under similar terms.

But this reflex ignores an uncomfortable but inescapable reality: Trump is in the White House in large part because of the establishment’s failures over the past decades. What economist Paul Krugman once called the “long depression” features a slow recovery that has not benefited working people. We remain mired in endless wars. The country’s inequality is more extreme, its insecurity more widespread, its institutional racism still entrenched. Money continues to corrupts our politics. Senator Elizabeth Warren got it exactly right when she addressed the Progressive Congress strategy summit on February 4: “Our moment of crisis didn’t begin with the election of Donald Trump. We were already in crisis…. Men like Donald Trump come to power when countries are already in deep trouble, when economies are already deeply flawed, when people in those countries begin to lose hope and look for someone else to blame.”--RB

A writer who gets it.

So rare these days.  I hear Hillary is gearing up for a last run for the Queendom.  Maybe Liz and Bernie won't endorse her next time?  Or am I dreaming, hoping against hope?


TS

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