The Fake Opposition Party

I wrote previously about the steaming failure of the Democrats to fight unprincipled Republicans on the hate crimes bill.  Judging by the comments, people see this as purely a Gay Rights issue.  That is not the case.  These things are always connected to the greater web of our political reality.  And that reality is that we do not have an opposition party.  We have a Republican straw man dressed in donkey’s clothing.  That is the Democratic party of the 21st century.  As we rise up to confront the Republican power grab, they step up in our stead and take a sound beating, leaving all of us bruised and bloody on the floor.

The Mahatma X Files on Why Pelosi Took Impeachment off the Table:

The current House Speaker has been nothing but an enabler as the CIA embarked on its euphemism of “enhanced interrogation techniques” such as waterboarding:

In September 2002, four members of Congress met in secret for a first look at a unique CIA program designed to wring vital information from reticent terrorism suspects in U.S. custody. For more than an hour, the bipartisan group, which included current House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), was given a virtual tour of the CIA’s overseas detention sites and the harsh techniques interrogators had devised to try to make their prisoners talk.

Among the techniques described, said two officials present, was waterboarding, a practice that years later would be condemned as torture by Democrats and some Republicans on Capitol Hill. But on that day, no objections were raised. Instead, at least two lawmakers in the room asked the CIA to push harder, two U.S. officials said.

There’s more on the Dem’s position on torture here:

Make sure to check Glenn Greenwald’s take on the Dem leaders’ complicity regarding torture. This part in particular is about as good as it gets from a mainstream liberal:

I wish none of this were true. I wish we had a genuine, vibrant opposition party. It would be indescribably beneficial if the rare, isolated and usually marginalized voices within the Democratic Party (and the even rarer and more marginalized voices in the GOP) were predominant. But they just aren’t. That’s just a fact that can’t be ignored. The Democratic Party in Congress is largely controlled and led by those who have enabled and affirmatively supported the worst aspects of the Bush foreign policy and the most severe abuses of our country’s political values.

I think our current party is a tragic mix of actual Democrats who fight, Republicans in Democratic clothing who lose on purpose, and power hungry thieves detailed in this piece of mandatory reading by Johnathan Schwarz:

Read this if you’re driven insane by the Democrats.

John Caruso of a Distant Ocean is pissed off at Medea Benjamin

Let me gently suggest that John, in his understandable frustration, is not perceiving this situation clearly. What he’s overlooking is that the Democrats operate according to the Iron Law of Institutions. The Iron Law of Institutions is: the people who control institutions care first and foremost about their power within the institution rather than the power of the institution itself. Thus, they would rather the institution “fail” while they remain in power within the institution than for the institution to “succeed” if that requires them to lose power within the institution.

These faux Democrats are doing so much to harm the country.  They are the reason voting for the Democrats is often such a painful proposition.

I am not sure exactly what to do about this situation, or if there is a catch-all solution.  I voted for Jim Webb last November, and with one exception I’ve been intensely proud of his efforts.  For a former Republican, the man knows how to fight the good fight.  So I think avoiding voting for Democrats altogether would be a mistake.  There are great Democrats out there.  The problem is in the Democrats who have settled into the upper rungs of the party apparatus.  The stodgy old fools who cling desperately to power at everyone else’s expense.  The Lieberman/Clinton Democrats.  What I think we need to do is begin an organized effort to shame and distance these politicians from the Democratic party.  Our party should live up to the promise of its platform, and be a powerful force for good in this country.  As long as we have Democrats who cave to the Republicans when we need them to fight, we will always find ourselves huddled in desperation, torn between protesting the cruel joke of elections and allowing a more overt evil into office.


2 Responses

  1. […] they certainly have not been. Here are the Democratic members of the Senate Homeland Security […]

  2. Oh great…..

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