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For years I've considered myself a Democratic Socialist. I first discovered the Democratic Socialists of America back in college and a lot of what they said made sense. Plus I had a lot of admiration for democratic socialist politicians and initiatives around the world (i.e. Michael Manley and the People's National Party in Jamaica and the kibbutz system in Israel). So I was surprised when I downloaded the "Where We Stand" publication of the International Socialist Organization. As I read it, I began to realize that I really didn't agree with a lot of their key issues (such as the producers of goods {workers} owning the industries and services they create).

So I decided that before I go on too much further, I should perhaps take some sort of political quiz to see where I stand. I was quite surprised that the political party that is most closely aligned with my own values and beliefs is the Green Party. Quite a bit of a surprise to me, since I hardly consider myself to be either an environmentalist or a pacifist.

Digging a little bit deeper, it seems that the Green Party and the Socialist Party, USA do have some ties; with several prominent members of the Democratic Socialists of America backing Ralph Nadar in his 2000 presidential bid. I've also heard some people refer to some Green Party members as being "watermelons"; green on the outside, but "red" on the inside (having a socialist core).

It also puzzles me that Libertarian came up as the next closest political party that agreed with my beliefs...even over the Democratic Party. Unlike the Green Party, I do have previous exposure and knowledge of the Libertarians. I dated several Libertarians...and my current boyfriend also has strong Libertarian leanings. In my experience, Libertarians are like Republicans who either aren't so socially bigoted; or simply don't care about social problems at all. This is definitely not me. Yes, I want the government to stay out of the media; I abhor censorship; I support the right to own firearms (I see what outlawing guns can do by watching Jamaica succumb to violent crime). And yes, I firmly believe that the government has no say in private affairs such as drug use and sexual behavior. But that's pretty much where I draw the line. I'm not an isolationist. I feel that having a strong military is important and yes, if a country is committing genocide somewhere, we should be able to step in and do something about it. I support a strong federal government; as long as that government is concerned with protecting its citizens and providing infrastructure, health care, food and shelter options, and education.

Ideally, I should be a Democrat (and in our two-party system...that is what I am registered as). However I am (like many other Democrats I'm sure) very disappointed in the modern-day Democratic Party in the US. It seems to be the party where anything goes. Major Democratic leaders are easily swayed by big business and capitalists. There is a weak stance on or total avoidance of moral issues. I mean I support the idea that homosexual couples should be afforded every legal right as a heterosexual couple. But have a civil union...don't have a marriage. Don't try to blot G-d name and the idea of religion out of our civil landscape. No, I don't want prayer in schools....but let's keep his name on our money. Let's not feel ashamed of religion and G-d just because we are progressive liberals. And finally I greatly oppose the fiscal irresponsibility of the party; to tax people first then be accountable for it later. To perpetuate ineffective programs and processes. To be an enemy to small business and entrepreneurship.

So getting back to socialism, it is pretty easy to stand up and say that you are a socialist (although I must admit, it is easier here in Southwest Pennsylvania, than it was in Southeast Florida). However it is much harder to live as a socialist...especially in a society that is not. Let's face it; this is America. It is in our beloved culture that the disadvantaged pull themselves up by the bootstraps and make success happen for them. We love the rags to riches stories; more so than the stories of massive charity and social reform.

I also am not blameless. I've worked since I was 15 and have always had it in my mind, "I either work...or I starve". And that has kept me going. Yet all around me are people who are younger than me, sitting on their porch and watch me go out to work and come home every day. They live in a stand-alone house and I do not. They have newer cars, and I do not. They have plenty of food in the fridge and new clothes and I do not. I work hard for my wages, but lose 25% to taxes. It's very hard...facing this every day. Seeing people who do not work live lifestyles comparable or even better than what I am living. Yet something in me tells me it is the right thing to do. Not everyone has had the opportunities that I have had. Everyone does not have the fortitude and tenacity to earn a college degree. Just because they are lacking in those areas (or any of the plethora of others), does not mean they should starve and be homeless.

No, I would much rather fight the urge to look down my nose at others and work alongside of them, together, to collectively make my neighborhood, my country a better place. We could be great...if we could just come together.

So any ideas would be greatly appreciated. Which political party would you suggest for me?


Which Political Party Suits Me The Best?

11%3 votes
29%8 votes
14%4 votes
11%3 votes
18%5 votes
0%0 votes
14%4 votes

| 27 votes | Vote | Results

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Comment Preferences

  •  Your poll is silly (0+ / 0-)

    Because it doesn't offer a "I don't have any interest in belonging to a party" option.

    "Given the choice between a Republican and someone who acts like a Republican, people will vote for a real Republican every time." Harry Truman

    by MargaretPOA on Fri Sep 06, 2013 at 03:31:12 AM PDT

  •  Democrats, the only party with a chance at power (4+ / 0-)

    The others aren't political parties in any useful sense.  Well, except the Republicans.  

    You know, I sometimes think if I could see, I'd be kicking a lot of ass. -Stevie Wonder at the Glastonbury Festival, 2010

    by Rich in PA on Fri Sep 06, 2013 at 03:51:42 AM PDT

  •  You don't sound like a Socialist with your (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    views on gay rights, so-called "morality". And Republicans are the fiscally irresponsible ones, not Democrats.  I dunno.  Your choice.

    tell mr. godot I'm walking the dog

    by chicago minx on Fri Sep 06, 2013 at 04:10:24 AM PDT

  •  Let's not keep god on our money (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    chicago minx

    1) if you believe in that stuff, associating a deity with "Mammon" should be deeply shameful and the antithesis of what you profess to believe in
    2) Perverting "E Pluribus Unum" was a stupid ass reaction to godless Communism.  There's nothing wrong with "Out of Many, One" in fact it's inspirational and aspirational -- it doesn't divide people like the oligarchy loves to do.

    Obama: self-described Republican; backed up by right-wing policies

    by The Dead Man on Fri Sep 06, 2013 at 04:10:42 AM PDT

  •  ummm... (5+ / 0-)
    I mean I support the idea that homosexual couples should be afforded every legal right as a heterosexual couple. But have a civil union...don't have a marriage.
    So, you'd like "separate but equal"? How has that worked out in American history?
    Don't try to blot G-d name and the idea of religion out of our civil landscape.
    Please indicate to me exactly which Democrats are advocating this, and how. I'd like to see some links, please.

    "When I give food to the poor, they call me a saint. When I ask why the poor have no food, they call me a communist." --Dom Helder Camara, archbishop of Recife

    by JamesGG on Fri Sep 06, 2013 at 04:19:49 AM PDT

    •  Official vs. Non-Official Stances (0+ / 0-)

      The Democratic Party does not officially try to blot out religion. However, many liberals that I personally encounter (so take that for what it's worth...) hold a lot of disdain for religious observance...especially when done and spoken about in the public sphere. It is as if tolerance means ignorance. You can worship G-d...but do it privately and quietly!

  •  Marriage is a Government Institution Not Religious (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    chicago minx, highacidity

    That's why your pastor cannot marry you except "by the authority granted me by the state" as s/he says in pronouncing you married.

    Marriage is about property, economics, contracts and rights not God.

    And only the government can divorce you.

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Fri Sep 06, 2013 at 05:06:07 AM PDT

  •  Why do you object to same-sex marriage? (0+ / 0-)

    Do you want to nullify the same-sex marriages that have been granted in states that currently recognize same-sex marriage?

    Shop Liberally this holiday season at Kos Katalog

    by JamieG from Md on Fri Sep 06, 2013 at 08:34:11 AM PDT

  •  your party (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Sandy on Signal

    Forty years ago, Randian millionaires, Dominionist Christian fanatics, and John Birch style loonies didn't have a party. Today, they're running the Republican party. A big part of their strategy was infiltrating and taking over the party from the bottom up, starting with very local positions like city council, school board, etc. Join your local Democratic party in a humble role, and start pulling it leftwards.
    I believe that under our current political system, nationally there is no function for any party but the top two. The only question is whether the one with a majority is going to be the more conservative one or the more liberal one. If you want to change our national politics, you can either work within this system, or wait until things get so bad that we're ripe for a revolution, or actively try to make things worse in order to hasten that day. In my opinion the last option is abhorrent because revolutionaries are right less often than they think they are, just like the rest of us. That's why I'm a reformist and a gradualist. Evolution gets it right by taking a very long time.

    •  Great Suggestion (0+ / 0-)

      Yes, your suggestion is most likely what I'll end up doing formally. I like having the ability to vote in primaries! It is just tough to be a "member" of something, yet have them fall short of the mark time and time again and not really represent your political priorities. The modern Democratic party has taken on a "macro-political" as opposed to "micro-political" position; where they support and implement grand plans and laws and deals. In the meantime, the average Working Joe's problems grow worse and worse every year. Reagan had his Trickle-Down economics theory. But the Democrats have a Trickle-Down sociology theory. They don't encourage or empower change on a local level. They don't see the forest for the trees; and realize that if the populace was empowered, then things would improve.

  •  personally I am beginning to think (0+ / 0-)

    What is in a party?  A Platform?  Well ...I think we should be electiing sane people to congress.   To our local govrnments.   American did not always have parties.   What was Washington?    We wouldnt have all that big money if everyone was independent and just voted for whoever was for equal rights...Civil rights and leaving the consitution in tact.
    It would be a way to get things done without party bosses .IMo.

    We the People have to make a difference and the Change.....Just do it ! Be part of helping us build a veteran community online. United Veterans of America

    by Vetwife on Fri Sep 06, 2013 at 06:23:19 PM PDT

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