Home | About | Donate

The Democratic Party Must Finally Abandon Centrism


#1

The Democratic Party Must Finally Abandon Centrism

John Nichols

It is easy to dismiss the “Come Together and Fight Back” Tour that this week will take Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders and Democratic National Committee chairman Tom Perez to eight cities in eight states this week as mere political theater. But this tour has the potential to finally begin redefining a Democratic Party that is still struggling with its identity after the disastrous 2014 and 2016 election cycles.


#2

The author may have forgotten to mention our perpetual wars. Many Democrats will be disappointed at this omission. Am I right?


#3

Sorry John. The Democratic Party is not going to change. There is far too much big money in keeping things the way they are for them. They just want to browbeat us into falling back in line. Well, not this time MoFo's. We have finally seen the light and are leaving in droves, hopefully joining me in the Green Party. The disaffected Berniecrats are taking it over and changing it to effectively compete and take down the Democratic Party once and for all. Send them the way of the Whigs. It is going to take awhile, and will involve splitting the vote three ways for a few cycles, so be patient, we're not going to win right away, but in the end we will have one major party that the rich and powerful cannot control. #Demexit 2017!


#4

"They're saying the right things..."

As the posters before me on this article have stated, we have heard this all before, for decades.

I really love Bernie, Perez, not so much, but in the end, Bernie chose unwisely to support the NeoLiberal party establishment which supports the United States 'Empire.'

Maintaining 'Empire' is good for corporations and the super rich, however, it's destructive to our Planet, our People, and Peace. It is killing any semblance of what used to be our Democracy.

No, the Democratic Party is never going to give up Money in Politics or Empire.

I say, F#€K them and the donkey they rode in on.

This country passed up on a huge opportunity to support the Green Party in 2016. Too many Americans are stuck in believing Billionaires and Corporations can actually represent their best interests. It's clear to see they cannot.

The Duopoly will only bring more Death and Human Suffering to this world of ours through their insistence on massive benefits for the super rich and Empire maintenance.

We must coalesce around a party representative of the 99%. This is Democracy's last best hope.


#5

Democrats must start impeachment on Trump! They are normalizing him with their willingness to act as if his administration is legitimate.
Impeachment will put out all the fires and if Dems don't have the guts, the people must stand up and demand it now.
There are mulitiple reasons right now. We don't have to wait for the deep state, we have the power to force impeachment from our reps and senators.
Resistance isn't working, impeachment will.
Start now.


#6

The Democrats' tune: Dough Ray Me.

And Ray and Me don't count unless we have lotsa Dough.

How's that for economic populism, yo?


#7

You are right. I'm disappointed by a lot of things with the Democrats, but not to the point of giving up on them. I think giving up on them as genedebs has done is a perfectly fine choice though. It is also perfectly fine to support third party some of the time, the Democrat other times (depending on who the democrat is).

If Democrats want to convince the people overall that they are working for them and not just for the corporations they need to not just do some tours (that I and most will probably never get to see), they need an organized trove of information that everyone can review online (and contribute opinions to as well). This should include past performance metrics - what legislation have they supported that was for us and how well did it work? Last time I looked at the DNC site for citizen input, it was out of date - hire some decent web developers already.


#8

The party does need to change. It must become dramatically more militant on economic issues. Democrats cannot simply say “no” to Donald Trump; they must provide a clear and coherent progressive populist alternative to the “billionaire populism” of a president who never was—and never will be—committed to advancing the interests of workers, farmers, small business owners, students, and retirees.
(I thought worth repeating) Centrism democratically serves the most people and ideology.
Moderate republicans could stand up to their leaders.

Sanders should consider a Carbon Tax; overdue, taxes pollution, funds clean up and restoration projects, funds alternative transit, for instance, we need a new paratransit vans with low-floor boarding and low-emission hybrid drivetrain for our seniors and disabled. GM and Ford still profit from their 1970's technology.
The basic schoolbus is 1950's tech. Hybrid drivetrains can triple effective mileage and minimize pollution.


#9

A carbon tax is a perfect opportunity for Democrats to present an idea that can be good for the Earth and the economy and they can find plenty of business leaders to speak for it as well. Cap and Trade was the dumb idea and I hope that dies completely. Single Payer is the other thing that if set up correctly, many business leaders will get behind - no large or small company wants to be bothered with details that have nothing to do with the product they are creating.


#10

The Dems won't abandon centrism until they abandon Wall Street campaign bribes.

Direct Online Democracy


#11

Centrists Must finally abandon the democratic party and support a new left,a socialist revolutionary left(like Venezuela's Chavez)and accept the demise of the capitalist system that didnt bring about much more happiness than the communist one.
We need new ideas,and equality,in sharing the world.If we can share resources and wealth equally with everyone else on the planet,there will be much less war and violence,crime and death...
But the weapons dealers and the defence contractors dont want that!!!
The big corporations that steal resources of weaker societies dont want that!!!!!
So maybe we deserve to be blwon to pieces ,all of us,just because we couldn't convince the greedy idiots of us,that they are committing suicide at the same time that they are killing us.
Stop hoping you will achieve happiness by stealing other peoples resources especially when you dont need them to survive but only to get richer.Otherwise ,you are not a democrat,you are one and the same with those who exploit and use you .


#12

And get full on Neo-Con and Theocrat and Koch Bros. Stooge Pence as president? You got to rethink this strategy. Pence can give a coherent speech and plan a strategy and find the right tactics to implement his agenda. You're talking about jumping from the frying pan into the blast furnace.

Some respond to this when I've said it other places that they propose impeaching Pence too.

And get the string puller of Pence's puppet strings Paul Ryan in charge? That's about the worse case scenario I can imagine.

STOP this infantile diversion of impeachment and start organizing around policies.


#13

...and...

I do not trust John Nichols. First he thinks HRC ran as a progressive. I hate that Facebook meme that has Steve Elliott's Stranger/Narrator from The Big Lebowski saying "You Must Be a Special Kind of Stupid" because the Stranger doesn't say things like that at all, he's a positive person who appreciates not demeans. But in this case I guess Nichols thinking this about HRC running as a progressive and putting it in an article means that he must be a special kind of stupid, or worse, thinks we're a special kind of stupid to buy his garbage.

I don't care what anyone says: Perez, Sanders, Nichols, or Clinton. It's what they DO that matters. When push comes to shove Nichols consistently promotes and supports the Neo-Liberal, Imperialist, Democratic Party and its Clintonista elites. He is just an apparatchik. What is this then? IT'S THE FIRST PHASE OF SHEEP DOGGING.

Phase 1: Speak the language of progressives you hope in the end to sheep dog and talk a big deal about promoting their agenda in order to convince them you are really one of them and share their agenda.

Phase 2: Refuse to actually speak out and call the Neo-Con, Neo-Liberal elites and their candidates what they really are during intra-party nomination campaigns.

Phase 3: In the actual campaign promote the Neo-Con, Neo-Liberal elite nominee to the progressive base that, hopefully, you've convinced to trust you as one of them.

Phase 4: If the elite wins, forget about the agenda you acted like you supported in phase 1. However, if the elite loses, then loop back to Phase 1.

But even in this Phase 1 they refuse to speak out against the real core issues that make the party Neo-Liberal and Neo-Con, as some others in these comments have already pointed out. (And my 'they' includes Sanders, I'm afraid.) These core issues are the policies that keep the rest of the progressive agenda off the table in Phase 4.

What are they?

The core issue preserving the Neo-Liberal control of the party, the issue that Sanders said was the core issue in the Primary, but now has simply abandoned to 'go along to get along,' is getting corporate money out of politics. Until the party does that it has no hope of being a progressive party and those who call for it to be, but simply abandon this issue, are hypocrites, liars, and playing us for that 'special kind of stupid.'

The core issue tied to the party being Neo-Con (or they prefer saying "Liberal Interventionists) is supporting the American Imperial Project, all its overseas adventurism in the name of humanitarianism, the Empire's foreign bases, and the obscene spending to accomplish all this.

So I will, borrowing a phrase a guy I knew in the 70s liked to use, 'call crap' on Nichols, Perez, and Sanders.

Go peddle your phase 1 sheep dogging somewhere else you party apparatchik.


#14

Fat chance! The "Democrats" REFUSED
to impeach Cheney, Bush et al for
torturing, and lying us into 2 wars with
death tolls into the MILLIONS!
Could anything be more serious than
such genocide?
Maybe the destruction of Democracy,
and life on the planet as we know it, which are also on the agenda.

WHY did the "democrats" refuse to impeach Cheney, Bush et al?
So that they could do the same things
now in SEVEN countries, and continue
the attacks on our Constitutional Rights
with the NSA, FBI, CIA etc.

What should the "Democratic" party do?
It should be itself: the DEMAGOGIC, "good cop" CORPORATE party.

What should WE do? Recognize reality,
and build a MASS NON-CORPORATE
party. The Greens are non-corporate,
and JUST NEED YOUR HELP to become
a MAJORITY party.

TIME TO GET OFF THE DIME. gp.org


#15

I'd consider adding this addendum to Phase 4 above:

If you win, blame the hippies you tried to woo in Phase 1 for unrealistically demanding ponies when they hold you accountable for campaign promises (most transparent administration ever, public option). If you lose, blame hippies for insufficient loyalty (abandoned Hilary), speaking up too much about liberal policy and thus scaring moderates away (wanted free stuff, Black Lives Matter was abrasive), and especially blame them for not understanding that incrementalism is the best they can hope for (single-payer will never happen).

Rinse and repeat.

Also, your posts are always a great read.


#16

I just received a fundraising solicitation, cleverly disguised as a survey, from the DCCC, a Democratic Party support group.
The "survey" DID NOT EVEN INCLUDE in its listed categories of top issues any of the real top issues:
(1) Our insane war and weapons budget, or
(2) Control of the party by the Corporations, or
(3) Climate Change
This is what is wrong with the Democratic Party
Until they change, which is very unlikely, they will never win elections.


#17

Small donor campaign financing, open primaries and no super delegates. Those should be non-negotiable. Until I see those happen I am staying outside the DP.


#18

Unless you are seeing things I don't know about, most of the Bernie folk are deeply involved in non DP progressive movements. I am sure that some Berniecrats are joining the Greens, but I dare say the bulk are going toward alternatives to the party system.


#19

As much as I think the Democrats are hopeless, the republicans have led the agenda for almost 37 years since Reagan. Their agenda seems to be to destroy any hope and opportunity for anyone who is not a millionaire or billionaire. They are despicable and must be taken out of our government if it is to survive. The Democrats must reform and there should be other options available but I think number one is to get rid of the republicans and anyone who acts like them. They have virtually destroyed a government that serves to benefit the public with one that serves the elite and special interests.

All incumbents of the democratic party need to be evaluated as to whether they are for a government for the people or if they are for one that is against the people. If they are against, they are the next on the agenda to be removed. The people must rise up and show what they are for. I think that a lot of Democratic politicians perceived the country as right winged and republican and to survive ended up catering to the right wing and centrist agenda. The ideal situation would be to eliminate the republican party, create viable options that would be competitive with the democrats and help to keep them in line or to reform. If we don't let the political class know who is in charge of this country - we are doomed. I hate to be hopeless but the agenda of the elite and federalists have gotten so far that I'm not sure what can bring the country to a place for the common good.


#20

The right wing funded by elite interests have set the whole agenda for the last 35 years if not for the whole history of the country. We have essentially been brought back to the robber baron state of the late 19th century. Our government has been outsourced to private interests who only have profit not service as their main agenda. So many of the taxes we pay go out of our hands into the government and out to contractors who are connected with the administration in power. Sure - it happened under Democrats as well - but I don't think anything like under Reagan, W. Bush and Trump.