Home | About | Donate

The Divisive Center vs. The Unifying Left


The Divisive Center vs. The Unifying Left

Peter Bloom

Bernie Sanders shocked the mainstream establishment this week by appearing on a Fox News Town Hall. Even more surprisingly, he was triumphant on a station most known for its fervent support for Trump and extreme Conservatism. In the citadel of right wing media he effectively and convincingly promoted progressive policies such as medicare for all. Even if only for a night, he showed that a left wing agenda that promised to address people's real economic and social problems could unify the country in a common radical purpose.



history brief



Neera Tanden and David Brock are going to fight this tooth and nail. This is a power struggle not just a question of the best strategy.



This is all nothing but Bread & Circuses unless our farcical election system is overhauled. The next President will be whoever our ruling Oligarchy wants him/her to be. Until then, the Left, Right and Center masses will scream, yell and punch each other in the face for the amusement of those in charge and afterward, it’ll be business as usual.



Yeah, kind of silly to say this. If those in power were indifferent to who takes power they wouldn’t throw as much money and resources to guarantee who gets actual power. If they win, yes, things will go on as they have in recent decades, but no need to think that will be the case. And besides anyway, with what is coming for us in regards to the environmental crisis, we better at least try to take actual power. When it hits the fan, if the right is in charge, it is going to be brutal.



In truth, it appears to me that the radical centrist would much prefer to keep the radical right in power than to allow the moderate left to take the White House. While they call for unity they are strategically and intentionally dividing the Party. That looks to me like an all out attempt to say it is either the radical centrist or we’ll go for another 4 for 45.



Given the reaction of the Faux Noise crowd, maybe Bernie can build a coalition of progressives and centrist Republicans who think Donnie is danger. Tell Chuckles and Nancy to stick their Wall St. party up their backsides.



“For Centrists the goal is bringing the country together in support of the status quo…”

This is another in a long, long line of endlessly wrong articles refusing to call the Democratic party right wing, and pretending that “centrism” in the U.S. is not in fact, very far to the right of center. Then there was this awful bit:

“Even if only for a night, he showed that a left wing agenda that promised to address people’s real economic and social problems could unify the country in a common radical purpose.”

Sanders is a centrist on the Western political spectrum. If he’s left wing, it’s not by much, and his voting support for right wing foreign policy surely counterbalances that. There is nothing remotely “radical,” either, about his policies, either on the Western spectrum or in light of the fact that every one of his major policy proposals has majority support among the electorate. Oh, and Nancy Pelosi just returned from ‘negotiating’ with the donors who own her, to report that we can’t have any of those things. Sorry.

“A common radical purpose” in this context is one of the more absurd turns of phrase I can recall. Please, CommonDreams, find more writers who don’t allow the Overton Window to substitute for objective judgment on policy and position.



Gotta love Jimmy. Even when he’s light on facts and history, his heart’s in a good place.



…and the “new” Dem Primary scam is another example.

Super Delegates (aka Lobbyists, Corporate and Party elite) cannot vote on the 1st ballot but can on the second ballot. With 19 candidates on the first ballot, it’s guaranteed that no one will win on the first ballot. Bringing us right back to the Status Quo.

Ok for the benefit of the contrarians, Lets say 9 drop out before the first ballot. Same result

1 Like


Eighty percent, 80%, of Pelosi’s campaign contributions came in amounts over $100,000, says one report –https://www.ineteconomics.org/uploads/downloads/Ferguson-et-al-Tribes-and-political-money-final.pdf ------- Only Mitch McConnell had a higher percentage, 90%. The candidate with the lowest in big donations was Sanders, only 4%. Big money wins elections. The top 1% own more than the lower 92%. This is not a democracy.



I see that there is a sort of tit for tat here now that it is obvious that the right-wing Democrats are in the minority, but it does not really work.

The trouble is not that the corporatist and authoritarian rightists that Bloom and others mysteriously refer to as “centrist” are divisive. They just have nothing to do with representing any of the rest of us. The reasons that we do not support them are mostly the same reasons that we did not support GWBush and do not support Trump.

There is not any unity in this; they are just part of the opposition.

1 Like


Dr. Bloom is having trouble placing people on a linear left, right and centrist diagram. He calls Sanders a Social Democrat which puts him more in the center.

I suspect a major paradigm shift is occurring that Socialists don’t like to talk about: the discarding of the premise that Socialists believe the means of production should be owned and controlled by the workers. That concept is no longer espoused by very many on the left.

In the end it makes Dr Bloom’s attempts at creating a left right centrist mapping of positions impossible.



Greetings, A fine read, clear points. As a sort-of centrist it was good to hear and think about the thoughts from a Sanders supporter. I’m not sure the belief in Sanders as a unifier is well founded. There are a lot of people on the conservative side who are not going to just sign on to the plan. You’re more likely to get us on your side than those folks. In part it is common for people to fear the risk that comes with being transformative. Let’s just hope we can get rid of the knucklehead we have in there now. My other complaint is ideological consistency. I prefer to see people who think, as opposed to those who know the line.



It is refreshing to hear from a voice who thinks the Social Democrats are in the center. That would bring the libertarians all the way around. We’re going to need three dimensional diagrams soon. Kind regards,



Agreed. And a fourth dimension since over time people change their minds.



I think the author assumes that the “great divide” is soley between the Republicans and the establishment Democrats on one side and the Progressives and the Democratic Socialists on the other side with the latter group being the representative of the all left in its entirety.

I challenge this assumption and line of thinking. Not all those on the left support Bernie Sanders and/or Democratic Socialism. I know of at least three groups on the left that due not support Bernie Sanders or Democratic Socialists.

  • (Marxist) Socialists
  • (Marxist) Communists
  • Anarcho-Socialists

Why don’t these three groups support Bernie Sanders and the Democratic Socialists? Because they advocate an agenda of reforming capitalism to make it kinder and gentler … not abolishing capitalism in favor building a bottoms-up, fully democratic socialist society which the productive components are owned and managed by the workers and other community members that puts people and the planet over profit.

  • What do you think the chances are that Marxist Socialists, Marxists Communists and Anarcho-Socialists (as a group) will vote for Bernie Sanders or any Democratic Socialist?

  • What do you think the chances are that Progressives or Democratic Socialists (as a group) will (or would ever) vote for a Marxist Socialist, Marxist Communist or Anarcho-Socialist candidate?

The “Unifying Left” is delusional.