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View Diary: This Land Called America (Warning! Heavy Graphics) (240 comments)

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  •  I'm a lot more crtical now than I was... (6+ / 0-)

    27 years ago.  I thought that the Reagan years were bad.  We had a president who, in his first term in the WH, mistook his only black cabinet member for a mayor of a big city (presumably one w/ a large minority population).  He was re-elected in a landslide, so that we could have a president who was really out to lunch.

    As bad as things were then, there was no unitary executive, no signing statements, and no dismissal of the Geneva Conventions as "anachronisms."  Reagan never had majorities in both houses.  His proxy contra war in Nicaragua, as bad as it was, was child's play compared to Iraq.

    It occurred to me during my deep despondency after the 2004 elections that, what we've seen since 1980 is much more in line w/ historical norms than the events of the mid-30s to the mid-70s were.  Trump, Lay, Ebbers, and Welch are the spiritual heirs of Rockefeller, Carniege, and Mellon.  Rove proudly claims to be the spiritual heir of Mark Hannah.

    Yes, there have been abolitionists and union organizers and civil rights leaders and antiwar activists over the years.  These heroes, however, have generally not tended to have the sway over long-term historical trends that the figures cited in the preceding paragraph have had.  Labor was able to somewhat level the playing field w/ capital for about 4 decades.  Capital has, otherwise, generally owned the playing field during most other eras.

    Kossacks should always recall that the period of labor's ascendancy was the sole era of Dem ascendancy.  It is virtually impossible to have a strong Dem party over the long haul w/ a weak labor movement.  There is no historical precedent for such a combination.  I've never understood why that basic fact is so easily forgotten by far too many Dems.

    Thanks, as always, for a bang-up job, OPOL.  My only quibble is that, during the '68 Dem Convention, Ribicoff openly attacked "Gestapo tactics on the streets of Chicago" during his McGovern nominating speech.  Plenty of people spoke about the beatings of the demonstrators.

    Other than that, you've given all of us ample food for thought.

    Some men see things as they are and ask why. I see things that never were and ask why not?

    by RFK Lives on Sun Apr 22, 2007 at 05:10:07 PM PDT

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