Democrat and Independent Thinker..."The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. But no price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself." -Nietzsche

Commenting on many things, including..."A government more dangerous to our liberty, than is the enemy it claims to protect us from." - Keith Olbermann

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Stop Cannabalism!

I'm very confused about the terms being bandied about in the Party. I don't understand the usage of the words "Centrist", "Liberal", "Progressive", "Left", "Right of Center", and on and on and on. On a number of influential blogs, "Centrism" seems to be attacked on every level and with a vehemism previously reserved for Republicans.

I think it's sad, really. The Democratic Party seems genetically engineered to attack and destroy itself. We should have one opponent, the other Party. I don't expect to agree with every other individual in the Democratic Party and I don't expect them to agree with me. I refuse to attack them for it, though I will state my disagreement when I find it appropriate.

Overall, I believe the Democratic Party's duty is to impose an attentiveness to the good of humanity on capitalism. I don't believe in absolute communism. I believe capitalism is the best route to a just and healthy society but must be tempered, sometimes severely, but by and large benignly, if carefully guided and supported by the will of the people. I believe that some socialist-inspired programs must be provided by the government, for the welfare of the people as a whole. This would include Social Security, public education, and universal health care. Inasmuch as this may curtail capitalism interests, so be it.

I actually took a test at The Political Compass and was surprised to find that I was a Libertarian Leftist, being left on economic issues and libertarian on social issues. I always considered myself to the epitome of the center. I was pleased, however, to be placed in the graph in nearly the exact position as Gandhi, and extremely close to Nelson Mandela, and the Dalai Lama. So, I must be doing something right.

Still, there has to be a middle road with elements of almost every political philosophy incorporated into the path to avoid society swinging too far towards any single one political philosophy. History has proven them all to be unworkable in their extreme manifestation.

To me, that has always meant centrism and pragmatism.

prag·ma·tism (prgm-tzm)
1. Philosophy A movement consisting of varying but associated theories, originally developed by Charles S. Peirce and William James and distinguished by the doctrine that the meaning of an idea or a proposition lies in its observable practical consequences.
2. A practical, matter-of-fact way of approaching or assessing situations or of solving problems.

cen·trist (sntrst)
One who takes a position in the political center; a moderate.
Marked by or adhering to a moderate political view: "The deep pool of centrist opinion in the country, that essential guarantee against violent political upheavals, is being dangerously shaken" New York Times.

cen·trism (sntrzm)
The political philosophy of avoiding the extremes of right and left by taking a moderate position.
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As someone who had read three dictionaries, one set of encyclopedia's and the complete works of Shakespeare by age 12, (not that you'd ever know it now having had so much sucked out of my brain by this disease) I've tended to stick with the legitimate definitions of words. However, reading in message boards, I've learned that Richard Perle has somehow tinged the word "pragmatism" beyond all acceptance by self-described liberals (not sure how), Centrists are empty headed, and Centrism is vacuous compromise for the sake of compromise.

I don't know. I just don't get it.

I would like for the new Congress to get all the things done that I want them to get done immediately, like (and in no particular order) universal healthcare, overturning the Military Commisions Act, reinstate posse comitatus and habeas corpus, raise the minimum wage substantially, ensure the greatest generation gets every and any damn thing it pleases in reward for saving the world, increase tariffs to impose fair trade, fully fund superior education for every student regardless of age, race, location or any other damn thing, stop the genocide in Darfur and every other damn place immediately, completely revamp election laws and procedures, abolish money donations from lobbyists, secure our ports and our borders, increase immigration quotas, solve the ILLEGAL immigration problem by engaging all possibilities such as citizenship for some with penalties, deportation for some with no questions, and fines for corporate exploiters, free the country from oil dependence, develop smarter methods of providing domestic security, abolish domestic surveillance without warrants, engage in the peace process in the middle east, rebuild the Gulf Coast, and, last but absolutely not least, withdraw from Iraq and establish a reasonable and workable foreign policy.

Oh, and impeach Bush after he blocks all of the above.

That's what I'd like to happen. And probably more. But, you know what? I live in reality and I know that they cannot do it all by January 30th. I know that compromises will have to be reached. I won't get everything I want. Other Democrats won't get everything they want. Some of us won't get anything we want. And some things we might get only if we take the White House and maintain our lead in Congress come the next election. Or the election after that. Or the one after that.

Compromise IS in the Constitution. Compromise IS the Constitution, insofar as the establishment of the three branches of government is in the Constitution.

I understand that some elected Democrats might seem like weasels to me, or backstabbers or traitors, or like downright idiots. Even so, the most disagreeable Democrat is preferable to me to the most agreeable Republican. Because, at core, I know that despite some evidence to the contrary, that Democrat is more likely to believe that corporate interests must be reigned in to some degree, even if a minor degree, for the good of the people. And I know that the Republican believes that all business, any business, is good business and good for America. I want that Democrat to do whatever he has to do in his elected position to please his constituents, the people in his state or district who cast their votes for him. I don't expect the good Democratic congressman from, I dunno, Kalamazoo, Michigan, (if there is one) to please me down here in Greenville, SC. I want him to please the folks in Kalamazoo, Michigan. Even if what he does makes me sputter and flush with frustration and irritation.

Grow up, Democrats. Quit whining. Quit name calling. Quit alienating every other Democrat, elected or not, who disagrees with one or more of your pet concerns or your preferred method of meeting an objective. Unite. Stop navel gazing and simultaneously attempting to find the splinter in the eye of your fellow Democrat while ignoring the log in your own, to paraphrase a well known book. Unite and fight the good fight and know when to compromise to achieve an achievable and reasonable move forward. But, above all, unite. Unite. Unite. Unite.

Or as my Daddy would say in his day, quit flapping your jaws. You're stirring up a hurricane.


colorado bob said...

Demo .... Thanks for the link to TYKO. I'll add you to the Friends of TYKO on my link list.

Here's yer ATTA GIRL ....

And I'll put you in my Far Away Folks File here:

Colorado Bob

You'll like this one :

Floating Fat Heads


BlueKat said...

Thanks muchly, Bob!