"More and Better Progressives"
Democratic Underground is obviously a site that focuses on electing Democrats. Orange State makes no bones about electing "more and better Democrats". Other "progressive" sites are
as much about opposing conservatism and Republicans as supporting Progressives, and generally default to "vote for this Democrat, (s)he is progressive."
Conservatives have found common ground between anti-abortion fanatics, tax protesters, "smaller government" "libertarians", and (paradoxically) MIC supporters and war hawks.
So, in light of the fact that uniting progressives is like herding cats, how do we elect more and better progressives? Where do we start? Is that even the proper way to frame it? How about "which issues would you support?", instead?
This clip of Bill Maher spent most of the day on the Kos rec list and on docudharma. Bill is exactly right, ""We have a center-right party and a crazy party..." The Democrats are the new Republicans, while the Republicans are left with just the whacked out far-right dominionist religious freaks. What he leaves out is why.
As I've been watching the health care "debate" it struck me. The fact is, there's no "debate". Seventy+ percent of Americans want some form of public option. If we can't get what we WANT, why would we accept ANY old health care bill the kings in congress deem to pass? It will only favor the insurance companies, who already have too much money and power, anyway. They'll just use it to gather even more money and power for themselves. Instead, let's recognize that our problems run far deeper. The underlying problem is that it's us against congress (plus the insurance companies, corporations, and big banks that put them in office).
We need to get the money out of politics.
Think about it. If Max Baucus couldn't take money from the insurance companies, would he be shilling for them? I suppose it's possible. But, in light of the fact that 72% of Americans want some form of public option, isn't it logical that if Max had to worry about courting VOTERS instead of MONEY it would be less likely?
Then, 10 or 20 years from now, when the last of the corporate shills have been purged we can go after (try not to gasp) SOCIALIZED MEDICINE instead of just a "public option" that the corporate shills will be trying to weaken from the moment it's passed.
We won't have "take(n) our country back" until my next-door neighbor has the same equally credible chance to be elected POTUS as yours does.
We (they) won't have that as long as the cost of a Presidential election is a billion dollars, and a reasonable cost for a national senate/house seat runs in the millions.
One idea: As part of the disclaimer at the end of EVERY political ad, make the candidates list who they're beholden to. "I'm Senator Timbuk, and I not only approve this message, I want you to know that the insurance industry paid for it." Give "30-second soundbite Americans" something to think about.
Of course our current corrupt congress will never pass such a law on their own volition, but once we lose the health care debate maybe people will be pissed off enough to demand it?
Another: Don't fund/support/work for candidates, work for issues. The "60-vote veto-proof majority" in the Senate is a joke. "Blue dogs" aren't guaranteed votes one way, the progressive caucus aren't guaranteed votes another way. Take "the Nader attitude" to congress (but never at the Presidential level ... the electoral college doesn't allow it). Call your Senator or congressman and tell him/her if (s)he doesn't vote the way you want you're going to work to defeat them, THEN DO IT. (Conversely, if they vote the way you want SUPPORT THEM.)
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