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  • Tuesday, June 28, 2005


    Notes from a Dark Age

    There are plenty of single issues of importance and interest to progressives. What I find worrying is the lack of unifying philosophy and broad principles.

    It's easy to focus on a particular issue, to see the outcome of the particular struggle as being emblematic of a wider struggle. I certainly don't propose abandoning such issues but I wish I saw more overarching expressions of principle that hung together.

    I've seen some of this sort of thing over on Democratic Underground but I still find them too locked into a oppositional perspective, a "Bush and Republicans bad! We could do much better" attitude. But I don't see the politics they offer as being very philosophically different than the Republicans. Before anyone shouts at me, of course there are basic differences between the two. But beyond the sloganeering, the capsule descriptions of basic values, I find the differences more of jockeying for position than implementations of core beliefs. I still find the most radical Democratic proposals to be rather mild variations on a theme.

    Perhaps it is the nature of the US political system that eventually dilutes and makes bland all proposals. So what happens then? We come to rely instead on the charisma of leaders. I shouldn't have to point out why that it a bad idea. The cult of personality inevitably leads to abuse.

    I just wish for once I could see a truly democratic political philosophy of action rise up and be ascendent.

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