Inappropriate sharing, incomprehensible ramblings, uncalled-for hostility: yup, it's a blog.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

The Loneliness of the Long-Distance Blogger

Greg yells this at me quite a lot: "But you're a progressive!"

What he means when he yells this is that I should stop bitching about progressives' bitching. Usually, when he yells this at me, it means I've gone off on a tangent about how progressives are whiny, tantrum-prone dumbasses refusing to see beyond their immediate needs. Which means we've gotten into another political-based discussion about how bloggers and pundits for "our side" consistently blame Obama for not making the Earth spin backwards, reversing time and altering political history.

As I've said--and have said for nearly a decade--the main goal of voting is not to keep one's party in power for legislative reasons; the main reason of voting is to control the Supreme Court. Any liberal law passed by a liberal majority can be undone with appeals to the Supreme Court.

This wasn't always how it worked, of course.

Warren Burger, for instance, was a conservative. When LBJ managed to pass the liberal-inclined civil rights act... well, let's just say that if the act was passed today, current Chief Justice Roberts would find a way to overturn it. Until a few years ago, being a justice meant putting aside political ideology. Now, at least for the right-leaning justices, it's an absolute must to toss precedent out the window in favor of ideology.

Progressives want everything changed immediately ("But you're a progressive!" Greg yells at me). Which is not how change happens--change comes by way of a focus on a singular goal, not by a broad sweep of the hand and a declaration that change has occurred. It's not pleasant, but that's how it is. Change: slow. Ideology: quick, but passing. Change: Civil rights. Ideology: McCarthyism.

The Democrats face a slaughter in November. Why? Certainly not because they've failed to do the things they promised to do--they passed health care, they passed extensions for unemployment, they ostensibly extricated us from the quagmire of Iraq, they keep pushing major legislation down the pike and into law, while starting talks between Israel and Palestine, while moving forward on gay marriage and gay soldiers, while, you know, progressing. Half-assed, certainly--no public option, for instance, and too cautious on gay rights--but it's movement forward.

The slaughter in November is more about the progressive base whining than it is about the Democrats' ability to get shit done. John Aravosis, for instance, is absolutely apoplectic on a regular basis about how DADT and DOMA haven't been repealed, and this apoplexy taints his opinion of Barack Obama's administration. Each day, I check out americablog.org, and each day I wish I hadn't.

It'd be nice if Obama and Democrats had forced thru a public option for health care, and repealed DADT and DOMA. Really. I wanted them to do those things. But the fact is, any movement on any of those very noble and grand concepts would be undone by the Supreme Court--not because of reason but because of ideology. All it'd take is one health care worker or one soldier to file a lawsuit, and whatever legislative action done to advance the idea of decent health care or decency towards homosexuals would be undone by Scalia, Thomas, Roberts and... that other guy. Alito. Then progressives would be stuck not only with a legislative failure but a legal hurdle, stuffed and mounted by the Roberts court, to undo with many more briefs and motions.

Democrats are facing a slaughter in November. Really. Not because Republicans have ideas or direction--they're pretty much done as a party--but because there's no enthusiasm among democratic voters. And the reason there's no enthusiasm is because progressives are spoiled, angry, reactionary people who think two years of Obama should've undone 8 years of Bush/Cheney, and petulantly refuse to participate in the political process.

Bush/Cheney. Please consider that duo. Please consider the things we lost during their reign: personal freedom became a luxury, gay rights became a joke, corporate interests took precedence over individual rights, religious tolerance became more vital than secular development (unless it involved Muslims, in which case religious tolerance took a back-seat to Christian fear).

Remember George H.W. Bush crying--actually crying!--because of his son's dishonorable management of the Oval Office?

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