I’ve burned through quite a few hours this weekend—since Friday, in fact—writing a piece which, I’ve just realized, parallels much of what University of Texas/Austin Professor Emeritus Walter Dean Burnham and UMass/Boston Political Science Professor and Senior Roosevelt Institute Fellow Thomas Ferguson published this past Wednesday, over at Alternet.org: “Americans Are Sick to Death of Both Parties: Why Our Politics Is in Worse Shape Than We Thought.”
Their article is now, easily, at or near the top of my personal list of the most important pieces about our country’s politics (and socioeconomics) that I’ve read all year. I'd say it's second in import only to French economist Thomas Piketty’s bestseller, “Capital in the Twenty-First Century,” which is almost as lengthy as “War and Peace” (Ferguson’s and Burnham’s article is a mere 2,500+/- words).
Kossack Phoebe Loosinhouse covered a part of this story in her great post, currently on the Rec List, “The Dems Check Engine Light Just Came On,” as you read this. But, when you revisit it with Burnham’s and Ferguson’s analytical overview—the additional stats they provide in their narrative give readers much deeper and far more stunning historical context, to say the least—they powerfully explain that what happened in this year’s mid-term election was not just about Democrats: “It likely heralds a new stage in the disintegration of the American political order.”
Think about who's just stated this. Then, read it again...
[The results of the 2014 mid-term elections] “...likely heralds a new stage in the disintegration of the American political order.”
–University of Texas/Austin Political Science Professor Emeritus Walter Dean Burnham
UMass/Boston Political Science Professor and
Senior Roosevelt Institute Fellow Thomas Ferguson
December 17, 2014
Perhaps more importantly, while Ferguson and Burnham approach their conclusions from an extremely well-annotated, (political) scientific standpoint, the fact of the matter is that they are echoing many of the most recently-published sentiments of Rolling Stone’s
Matt Taibbi, as well as The Intercept’s
Glenn Greenwald, among others, from this past week; as you’ll soon realize, further down, below.
When all’s said and done, everything you’re reading here confirms the guidance of Democratic Party pollster Stan Greenberg, about whose work I’ve written a post, which I've referenced many times since, over the past few years.
If nothing else, I hope this post makes Democrats (at least) think real hard about what the hell they’re doing; meanwhile, many (again, no links; no need to call out anyone) have already opted to become stenographers for the Democratic Party status quo’s “inevitability meme,” at least when it comes to our country’s 2016 presidential politics.