Third Party & Independents Archives

What to do, what to do

I have reservations about voting for Kerry. I had reservations about voting for Nader in 92, 96, and 2000 as well. I did vote for him, however. My problem is not with Kerry himself, but rather with the Democratic Party as a whole. The democrats are no longer the liberal party that they once were. Democrats largely are. The Party is not. The party has recast itself as Republican Lite.

The DLC adopted a strategy of moving as far to the right as possible on economic issues in order to attract big business dollars. This has served to alienate the working class while failing to bring in the volume of cash they had been hoping for. The Party seems to have taken the attitude of "What're you going to do, vote REPUBLICAN?" when it comes to their traditional base of unions, blue collar workers, progressives, and minority groups. More and more the answer is "No, we're just not going to vote." Blue collar workers, the "real Americans" that the Republicans so publicly idolize while privately raping them, tend to be more moderate or conservative on social issues, and with economic issues off the table there is no reason for them to support the Democrats.

Clinton was the epitome of this strategy. He moved as far to the right as he could without registering as a Republican, and spoke all manner of heartwarming platitudes about the common man, while bending over backwards to do every favor possible for big business, usually at the expense of the common man. I don't think that Kerry is as charismatic as Clinton, but I think he would be a far better President than Clinton was. Kerry and Edwards are hardly the heirs to the passionate leaders of progressivism that brought us the 8 hour workday, the end of child labor, the end of company towns, National Parks, Civil Rights, and so many other advances made in the first half of the 20th century. All the Democratic Party offers to counter the fiscal conservative/social extreme conservative model of the Republicans is fiscal conservative/social moderate. So that's the range of political thought in this country now?

Politics in America is rapidly becoming a battle between moderate conservatives and the far right. If you are a centrist or a liberal, you are not a welcome participant in most instances. The earnest if moderate populism of John Edwards is truly a shock. That the media is trying to brand Edwards as a Marxist, much as they did to the fiscal conservative and social moderate Howard Dean, is not at all surprising. There are fewer voices to the left of center on the national scene than there were 100 years ago. My options are to vote for an Independent who will not have any real effect on the election, vote for a Green who will not have any real effect on the election, or vote for the lesser of two evils.

Posted by rev_matt_y at July 14, 2004 11:56 AM