Why Progressives Never Get the Big Wins
The recent post on Daily Kos by Jed Lewison, criticizing Jane Hamsher, is a great example of how progressives shoot themselves in the foot and help ensure that our side loses the big battles.
Jane is doing something extremely brilliant here. The people on the "tea party" right are angry – they just are angry about the WRONG things. Jane is directing their anger to the right things – the fact that corporations and industry lobbyists have taken over both parties, and the public gets screwed in the process. What she is doing is incredible, and the Beltway and the current political establishment are right to be nervous.
Unfortunately, as always – we have people on the left like Jed Lewison shooting their own down – just like what has often happened to Howard Dean, Dennis Kucinich, Glenn Greenwald, Matt Taibbi, etc. They have often been criticized for trying to fight harder. This is partly why progressive activism has failed in a big way over the past year.
The first mistake that the Daily Kos community made was endorsing a PERSON (Obama) rather than progressive positions. Now they’re busy trying to defend themselves from the fallout of their mistake. They feel obligated to defend Obama as if he can do no wrong. I think these people need to wake up; Obama has never been a progressive. Right off the bat he voted wrong on FISA before he was even President. He has continued the Bush administration’s atrocities on torture, escalation of war, the financial bailouts on the backs of the American people, and now the healthcare insurance handouts also on the backs of Americans. It’s pathetic that people are so blinded by their love for Obama (just like Bush apologists were for Bush) that they’re willing to sell out what they claim to stand for.
The healthcare bill is not a step forward – it only reaffirms the power of the insurance companies, criminalizes citizens who don’t pay into the system, and also takes several steps backwards in women’s rights. If this is what the Democratic party is all about, I’m not sure I’m a Democrat anymore.
I think Kossacks like Jed and the rest of the Jane Hamsher critics need to decide – are they PROGRESSIVES, or are they simply DEMOCRATS? Are they about progressive ideas that will help move this country forward, or are they about a political party? It appears to me to be the latter. Either that, or they simply like being in an abusive relationship with Obama, Rahm, and team.
I was pretty turned off personally from the way Daily Kos endorsed Obama so quickly, but I was willing to give Obama a chance. Heck I thought – maybe I’m wrong and Obama will really bring about progressive change. Well a year later, I’m convinced I was right all along – it was the Kos community that was wrong. And now they have explaining to do to really gain any credibility back. Until then, I’m going to do all I can to support true progressives like Jane Hamsher, who continues to show her bravery and fight for what is right.