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View Diary: Time for Liberals to Go on the Offensive, and Stay There (254 comments)

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  •  Seriously, I was thinking the *exact* same (31+ / 0-)

    thing earlier, especially looking at the front page here.  Aren't we pushing things forward anywhere?  CA? NY?  Let's start looking at our victories.

    There revolution will not be televised. But it will be blogged, a lot. Probably more so than is necessary.

    by AoT on Sat Apr 07, 2012 at 05:46:02 PM PDT

    [ Parent ]

    •  The Left has no clear governing philosophy to (28+ / 0-)

      rally around. We've been playing defense since the Ayatollah took Americans hostage, and we've surrendered virtually everything from the New Deal except Social Security.

      What we need is a governing philosophy, not just more programs.

      The diarist has stated well what it will take to turn this around, and we need to find the liberals with the backbone to say it like it is; to put the GOP's back to the wall and call its bluff.

      And unless we manage to do it now, this year, this election, I don't think it will happen for another generation or two. We'll be SOL by then, with a complete economic collapse.

      •  One more thing I want to know: HEALTH CARE FOR ALL (20+ / 0-)

        What is their plan to truly allow every single person in this country to be able to receive decent, comprehensive health care, without begging, without going bankrupt, without having to choose between food and medicine.

        * * * *

        Excellent diary.

        I have been looking forward to the day when liberals all hold their heads high, and proclaim:


        Yes, I want the politicians I support to be unabashed liberals. No more pseudo anything. No more Ben Nelsons and Max Baucuses pretending to be what they aren't.

        I WANT BARACK OBAMA TO PROUDLY DECLARE THAT HE IS A LIBERAL! (Well, at least after he's re-elected... this country is far, far too brainwashed right now. Too many people believe that liberals are dangerous communists who will take away everything from them. We need to educate people about the truth, and if all Dem candidates ran as proud liberals, rather than running away and repeating Republican crap about balanced budgets and austerity and evil unions and trickle-down and how taxes kill jobs and drill baby drill, that re-education would start to take hold. But it will take years, not weeks or months.)

        "But there is so much more to do." - Barack Obama, Nov. 4, 2008

        by flitedocnm on Sat Apr 07, 2012 at 08:39:20 PM PDT

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        •  So all Dems should run as proud liberals, (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          MartyM, MikePhoenix, George Hier, qofdisks

          Except Barack Obama because he can't win as a liberal in this brainwashed country?  Think you need to check your own laundry dude...

          •  I think Obama needs to be super strong on economic (6+ / 0-)

            issues, on tax fairness, on rebuilding our infrastructure, on support for main street, on JOBS, JOBS, and more JOBS.

            He needs to be incredibly strong on support for women and women's health.

            He needs to be very strong on labor.

            But if he comes out now, with oil prices being high, and says we're going to halt drilling, and halt natural gas exploration, and put all our money into green energy, he will be hammered so badly there is a good chance he'll lose, even though that's the right thing to do, and even though as well all know the price of oil has zero to do with the president's policies.

            If he comes out now for more restrictive gun laws, the NRA and the right wing will go absolutely apeshit. And many independents will waver. Even though that would be the correct, liberal thing to do.

            And, most importantly, "liberal" has become such a dirty word, and there is so much racism out there, that it would be a rallying cry. The dumb-shit right-wing nutjobs who might sit out Romney would be energized as never before if Barack Obama beat on his chest and declared himself to be the next coming of FDR.

            Yes, I fully appreciate the apparent contradiction in what I'm saying. Maybe I'm trying to to cut too fine a line. Politics is tricky. Maybe everything I've said is dead wrong. But my instincts say to be careful. As much as I dearly, dearly want to see a transformative Barack Obama, as much as I would LOVE him to be another FDR -- a) That's not who he is, and b) If he tried to do that now (as opposed to having done it three years ago), I'm afraid he'd lose.

            This has nothing to do with "my laundry", thank you for the unnecessary snide comment. It has everything to do with very much wanting to see a huge swing back toward liberalism in this country, but wanting even more not to give the right wing more ammunition that would result in disastrous Republican control of the White House less than a year from now.

            "But there is so much more to do." - Barack Obama, Nov. 4, 2008

            by flitedocnm on Sat Apr 07, 2012 at 09:41:13 PM PDT

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        •  Proclaiming pride is defensive. (7+ / 0-)

          Just be proud and it shows.

          Technology is a compromise: You can use whatever tool you choose, but be assured it will use you back.

          by Troubadour on Sun Apr 08, 2012 at 04:01:00 AM PDT

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      •  Maybe you don't have one; I have four. (10+ / 0-)

        A speech delivered by President Roosevelt incorporated the following

        In the future days, which we seek to make secure, we look forward to a world founded upon four essential human freedoms. The first is freedom of speech and expression—everywhere in the world. The second is freedom of every person to worship God in his own way—everywhere in the world. The third is freedom from want—which, translated into world terms, means economic understandings which will secure to every nation a healthy peacetime life for its inhabitants—everywhere in the world. The fourth is freedom from fear—which, translated into world terms, means a world-wide reduction of armaments to such a point and in such a thorough fashion that no nation will be in a position to commit an act of physical aggression against any neighbor—anywhere in the world. That is no vision of a distant millennium. It is a definite basis for a kind of world attainable in our own time and generation. That kind of world is the very antithesis of the so-called new order of tyranny which the dictators seek to create with the crash of a bomb.—Franklin D. Roosevelt, excerpted from the State of the Union Address to the Congress, January 6, 1941
        If you have a better place to start, knock yourself out.

        "There are many truths of which the full meaning cannot be realized until personal experience has brought it home." John Stuart Mill

        by kuvasz on Sat Apr 07, 2012 at 11:14:50 PM PDT

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      •  We have one (10+ / 0-)

        We just aren't so good at talking about it.  

        Give every American an equal opportunity to succeed.  Provide social insurance that everyone pays into to reduce the risks that the average citizen faces.  What consenting adults do behind a locked bedroom door is their business, not ours.  You break it, you buy it.  Don't make enemies faster that we can kill them.  People before profits!  

        I think I covered everything...  

        Under capitalism man exploits man, under communism the roles are reversed.

        by DavidMS on Sun Apr 08, 2012 at 07:11:51 AM PDT

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      •  philosophy not needed (5+ / 0-)

        The problem is not a lack of philosophy.

        The problem is that we are not pushing for change hard enough.

        Netroots Nation could be used to push back.

        Instead there just seems to be acceptance from Democrats rank and file whenever the elected Democrats take the wrong path.

        Until people on dkos decide to fight the Democrats, we will continue to have Democrats in Washington who put the people second

        by GideonAB on Sun Apr 08, 2012 at 10:12:13 AM PDT

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        •  I disagree. The reason we don't have change is (0+ / 0-)

          that there is no central, uniting theme to the "change" we seek that has been communicated. Thus, no critical mass of citizens to get behind the demands for change, and therefore the "leaders" of the democratic party aren't forced to stand for what they say they believe in.

          One can't just propose programs,programs, programs. There has to be an underlying understanding of reality that is different from the reigning one.

          The conservatives certainly have theirs: life is a zero sum struggle and if the poor or middle class gain, it must be at the loss of the wealthy. And since the wealthy are more deserving (by virtue of being wealthy), the poor and middle class should be allowed to die off. There is no such thing as society. It's all about individuals, and the survival of the fittest.

          Our counter to that would run something like this: each person is part of a community, and within that community are both rights and responsibilities. The government exists not to enrich the rich, but to provide a level playing field, to protect the rights of the weak against the strong, and to act as a mechanism for each of us to fulfill our civic responsibility to everyone else, by providing the services the community needs: transportation, defense, charity for the destitute, education of all children, and to guarantee equal opportunity to all.

          This world view manifests itself in all kinds of ways, most of which are a change from the way we now do things.

          The 19th century was marked by struggles over what it meant to be human, with the fight over slavery, and then the war between social darwinism and the social gospel. The 20th century became marked by the struggle between economic ideals: capitalism vs. Communism.

          This century the struggle is over what defines community: an atomistic collection of individuals, or an interlocking abundance of life dependent on and nourishing of one another.

          Statesmen used to be able to talk in those terms, and great things got done. That our politicians can't do that anymore says a great deal about the state of the republic.

      •  Many liberal ideals are socialist (2+ / 0-)

        Yes, socialist. Some socialism is good.

        But that's a big reason why Democrats almost never seem to say what they really stand for. If they make it explicit, a log of it is in fact socialism, and American and international corporate captains won't let that stand.

        Government and laws are the agreement we all make to secure everyone's freedom.

        by Simplify on Sun Apr 08, 2012 at 04:11:50 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Yes, and they were accepted in the mid-20th (1+ / 0-)
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          century because the pure capitalists realized that such things were needed to keep society together; and they grudgingly saw the need to keep society together in the struggle against communism.

          But now communism is gone, and the pure capitalists see no  reason, any longer, to concern themselves with society, with those who aren't of the 1%.

      •  It has not been the Democratic politicians (2+ / 0-)

        including our president.
        "we need to find the liberals with the backbone to say it like it is; to put the GOP's back to the wall and call its bluff."

        •  Then who, pray tell, keeps leading the charge to (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          to the rear? You've seen how much of the New Deal has been bargained away; how Unions morphed, in the public mind, from defenders of the worker to parasites (the GOP frame); how Democrats failed to oppose tax cuts for the rich and tax increases for the rest of us.

          If it's not democratic politicians, who is filling those chairs in Congress, the legislatures of the states and the governerships?

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