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View Diary: On Productive Political Discourse (80 comments)

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  •  Speaking for myself only (9+ / 0-)

    I have been majorly disappointed in this administration, despite several oft listed accomplishments, because there has been no real forward movement in everyday people empowerment, economically, environmentally, or in our foreign policy. It all seems weighted toward protecting big business, from banks and energy companies to the military, which have shown themselves time and time again to NOT be the change we seek, and at all helpful to the causes of life, liberty, justice, and sustainability for anyone but themselves and the fat wallets they sit on. Nothing new there.

    That hope for change that this administration ran on, with full color posters, got squashed and I find it perfectly acceptable for people to let it be known that they are not fooled by palliative speeches, and relative to the state of the nation as a whole, pretty minor policy changes.

    I think that for a lot of people on this website, which I find to be pretty well informed, there is no longer much hope (beyond a few more recent bright lights) for our party as it stands today to effect a cure or even begin to move in that direction, and the first steps towards moving away from bad policy for people is to point it out over and over and over until there are enough people in agreement with the WRONGNESS of it all to begin to make it right. That has been proven to work FOR people FOREVER and I'm in favor of letting people speak those truths without the awful attempts to shut them down through snide comments, baiting, and outright attempts at character assassination that I often see here.

    •  There was so much less hope for our party (0+ / 0-)

      in 2004 than there is now.

      I think it's childish to expect everything to turn on a dime and frankly I think those who use the opportunity this space provides to express their personal disappointment rather than looking for more ways to go forward are missing the point of political activity --it isn't about me, it's about all of us.  Politics doesn't exist to make us feel good or bad, it exists to give us opportunities to do something.  Expressing disappointment is passive by definition, it accepts victimhood.

      In 2004 we were horrified and victimized and we responded by trying to do something about it.  How can we organize?  How can we express our points of view more persuasively?  How can we swing more votes?  Stuff like that.  Not much of that any more and what there is is mostly buried under endless reports of the idiocy of wingnuts (well, duh! like we don't already know that) or

      to point it out over and over and over
      how we're being betrayed or sold out or whatever (what a shock, politicians are basically whores).

      I don't know about you, but I suspect we all have friends in real life who constantly express negativity (going eeyore at every opportunity) and we either get depressed and feel hopeless when we listen to them or just tune them out after awhile.

      Pointing out wrongness isn't that productive among a group of people who know there's a lot of wrongness around, it's mostly just depressing.  If we see our goal as trying to build something, we need to actually build not just make lists of how not to build.  There's a huge fundamental difference between the two.

      •  I stopped right here (0+ / 0-)
        I think it's childish to expect everything to turn on a dime
        Would you liked to try again?
        I'm willing to listen.
        •  stopped right there? (0+ / 0-)

          If you aren't willing to read, you aren't actually willing to listen are you?

          read the rest and we can have a conversation

          •  I am 55 years old (0+ / 0-)

            I've been on my own since I was 14, have raised two children alone, I've worked varied careers with all sorts of people that taught me all sorts of things, I'm well read, I keep up as well as I can with current affairs and I simply refuse to be referred to as either being a child wanting her dessert now, or supporting others that you peg as such, in response to my comment.

            Anyway, I have to go shower and get stuff done.
            Maybe later.

            •  I think any of us at any age (0+ / 0-)

              has room to grow more.  When we stop looking for ways to grow, I think we start dying.

              Just curious if you ever fed your kids by pointing out the food that wasn't there, if you ever got a better job by complaining about the one you had as opposed to going out and finding a better one.

              Have a good day

      •  Hope (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        inclusiveheart, 3goldens

        First of all, I would disagree with your claim that there is more hope for the Democratic party today than in 2004.  The past five years have eradicated any hope that life will get better for most Americans.  The people overwhelming elected Democrats to change course.  That they have continued the inequitable economic policies of the republicans and refused to bring any of the wrongdoers to justice has left many people hopeless.  This has been my experience and it has been supported by a number of polls.  So, feel free to offer an opinion of the current state of "hope," but please refrain from stating it as a quantifiable fact.  That is solopsistic.  And one of the tendencies around here that cheapens the discourse.

        I raised the question to you upthread about your position, but I see that you don't like to hear complaints about this administration and are using unfounded and inflammatory rhetoric to disguise your disdain for complaints (childish?).  Bringing out the duty old trope that people who complain must expect "things to turn on a dime" is the kind of argumentation the diarist is, I believe, arguing against.

        In order to "build something" collectively through this venue, we would need a consensus on what to build.  That is the hang-up.  There are essentially two schools in these parts- those who rail against the current admin's regressive policies and those who defend the party regardless of its policies.  It is impossible to find common ground (except on rare occasions) because these groups have two distinct goals.  If a policy position makes the admin look bad, one group tries to diminish the policy concern (see, eg, the demonization of FDR and the New Deal).  The policy group is unwilling to subordinate policy to party loyalty.  

        As for pointing out problems being depressing, on this we can agree.  These are depressing times, as we watch the social safety net being torn into shreds, as certain players in our society are above the law (too big to fail or to prosecute), as Democrats turn their knife to SS while equivocating to the public (chained CPI is not a cut- Pelosi et al.).  However, I believe progress requires that we acknowledge and confront these depressing problems as a first step.  Fostering awareness of the problems is an important step.  Ignoring them to focus on some issue/action that can bring immediate gratification is a selfish approach IMO.

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