Why the Personal Can't Always Be Political

A slightly provocative title, if one knows one's recent US history (hint: a reference to the women's movement from the 1970s), but really, my diary has nothing to do with feminism or woman's issues. Rather, I'm talking about the rather recent debates that have been roiling Kos since Barack Obama's post. My basic point is this: because of the nature of the US political system, that what one wants ideally from a politician can very rarely be achieved on a national level in its entirety. As such, one frequently has to be able to separate what one believes personally from what one supports politically to achieve success on the national level. Allow me to elaborate.

Basically, I have many views - or at least am open to many views - that I would never demand a national politician in the Democratic Party support. For example, I think all drugs currently deemed illegal should be decriminalized. I think at the very least marijuana should be. But I know this is not a position that could achieve mainstream support in the current incarnation, and would be electoral poison were a Democratic Presidential candidate attempt to run on such a platform. This does not mean I abandon my beliefs. But it does mean I am realistic about what can be achieved through the political process in the short term.

Simply put, it strikes me that many people here are so heavily invested personally in the political process that they aren't able to do so. And I think the reaction to Obama as well as all the hyperbolic rhetoric about the SCOTUS nominees demonstrates this. I think an argument can be made for the Dems opposing both Roberts and now Miers, as well as the sagacity of Reid's decision on the filibuster compromise. None present the Democrats with "good" options, except maybe the filibuster compromise, but even here I think the Democrats - had they chosen to gamble, which a more uncompromising would have represented - could have ended up in a worse position. Thus, Reid's decision was not a "sell out"; neither are (were) the votes on Bush's SCOTUS nominees. He took his calculations based on what he thought were the best options, both short term and long term, given the circumstances he found himself. And based on his actions more generally since he became minority leader, I am confident he did so because he has the best interest of the political and policy goals of the broad center-left coalition that is the Democratic Party at heart. The political is by definition an arena of limited possibilities: and the Democratic Party's are trying to make the best out of limited set of options.

To put it another way, in many countries, governments are formed by coalitions after elections. Probably most democracies function this way: Germany, Italy, Israel, Australia, New Zealand, and currently, Canada represent a short list of nations governed by coalitions. Superficially, the US isn't. But, I would argue, de facto, that it is, and that the superficial unity of the major parties makes people demand "purity." But in reality, the Democratic and Republican Parties are grand coalitions in all but name, whose only distinction from the ruling governments listed above is that the coalition forms before the election campaign begins, not after. Now I think there are strong arguments to be made that the coalition style governments above are more democratic and more responsive to people's needs. But, also, a counter argument can be made that they are much less stable, and accordingly, much less effective. A quick glance at Italian politics since WWII would tend to suggest this. But I digress. The point in all this is is that by choosing to participate in the Democratic Party, you have chosen to participate in a coalition. And by definition, participation in such a coalition means you aren't always going to get your way.

I'm sure we all have our issues that are currently "off the radar" or, alternatively, "out of the mainstream." My comment about drug laws serves as just one example. The point is that unless I want to give up on electoral politics on a national level, I know - a priori - that I "can't always get what I want," and that I cannot define myself and my well-being and happiness on whether or not the Democratic Party closely mirrors my personal beliefs. Because its not going to. All I can hope for is to be a part of a coalition - the Democratic Party - which is going to move the country in ways that more closely reflect how I think than the alternative - the Republican Party. And at this point in time, I'm pretty damn sure the last sentance is true.

If you want the personal to be much more closely mirrored, you need to do so on an activist or advocate at the local political level. Talk to your neighbor or acquaintance about what you believe and why you believe it. Form a union (God knows we need more). Join a third party in a local election. Vote for more left wing or "unorthodox" candidates who have a chance. Campaign for public transport. There are many, many things one can do.

But when it comes to national politics, it is simply not realistic to expect similar things. To become president in such a large country, you need the votes - to even have a chance of having your views represented - of many people who might think very differently and have a very different set of "personal" beliefs or priorites than yourself. In short, you need a coalition. To ignore this fact is to doom yourself to frustration and perhaps, even worse, to be detrimental to the causes you support in the first place.

Tags: Democrats (all tags)



Two different situations
The reaction to Obama was a reaction to the sense by a lot of people over at D Kos that tghe left flank of the party was once again being dumped on. I think the criticism there is valid.  It wasn't about the personal. It was about strategy and a national agenda. Maybe it's because I read a lot of what people said- but other than a vocal minority, most people made very valid criticism of the sense that Sen. Obama was pulling a Sista Soulja moment with D Kos by a) painting too broadly with one brush and b) not making the same critique of the right flank of the party. For one, I think people would like to hear the leadership make similar comments to say Biden who came out to attack his own party members. I don't think that's a personal request. At least to me, it seems like one designed to build the party.

I do, however, agree with the S Ct. People right now are operating on little, if no facts, and formulating opinions and courses of actions based on nothing more than their fears and personal believes. For example, the statement such as "she's evangelical, and therefore, she is bad." The next statements normally being she should be opposed for this reason.

These are two fundamentally different things that you have placed together that aren't really the same arguments at all.

by bruh21 2005-10-03 07:27PM | 0 recs
How true
My cute adage about this subject: "Any democratic society containing two or more people is necessarily based on compromise."

T-shirts, anyone?

by Blank Frank 2005-10-03 07:31PM | 0 recs
you are correct, but
in my view, we continue to argue about things that miss the point

we need to show people their political options in ways they can understand in terms of their everyday life

to do that, we must organize a party

while every politician is a free agent (and, believe me, that is how they see themselves on Capitol Hill), then politics will always remain personalities rather than policies

only when the politicians have to defend a party position will they care what the party stands for.  I have ideas about some practical, and simple ways to organize a party

but as a first step, someone, somewhere has to record and comment about what the parties stand for in an organized way.  we must actually record, and keep records, of what the parties do in Committee.  what they do on the budget.  Big picture, but also in telling detail

that is a starting place where bloggers could band together and begin to organize the information and make it available to the public and press.  Credibility, not advocacy, will be key to that project

it is not about personalities.  it is about policy

by jwp26 2005-10-03 07:49PM | 0 recs
Re: you are correct, but
I don't disagree.

My problem is with people who expect a kind of "Hail Mary" pass strategy of running uncompromising lefties for office at a national level and expecting this is how you achieve the long term solution you (and I) both want.

by Ben P 2005-10-03 07:53PM | 0 recs
Re: you are correct, but
Honestly, I find that people want to think that politics is somehow different than real life.  And they want to talk differently.  As if touched by holiness or wisdom.

Life is chaotic.  Sometimes the right thing to do seems obvious, sometimes not so obvious.

If people would just talk to each other in a relaxed, adult tone, then they would have more credibility.  And, ultimately, persuade more people.

Don't get me wrong.  People largely believe what they want to believe.  It is not all about sweet reason.  But there is no reason to alienate everybody by using a tone of self-righteousness.

Too many people think Liberals (like me, generally) are wild-eyed and impractical.  Actually, most liberal policies are common sense, and the Conservative policies are the most impractical disasters imaginable.

But Cheney has this tone of the understanding Uncle that he puts on the public.  While we go around yelling.

For Pete's sake, at a minimum, let's stop yelling.

by jwp26 2005-10-03 08:14PM | 0 recs
Re: you are correct, but
swing a 3 iron the right way, the ball goes 210 yards. Cheney has a good management style. When I talk to people in the back of my mind there is a thought: "If this person were authorized to spend my money, what would I tell him to do... if he already had it in his hand and it wasn't coming back.."

That settles me down quickly. I have alot of conservative friends, and even a radical right to life libertarian and I love them all. They are nice people at the core.  And yes on the other end of the spectrum I know people that are so left they even started communist parties in other countries. Again, just nice people.

The achilles heel of the democratic party is that its vocal minority are really narcissistic and narrow minded. A broad movement of libertarian democrats in the party - that moves farther than the fascist GOP and away from K Street to Main street - thats a big leap for both parties.

Both Dems and GOP are cutting deals up there, power is getting centralized and the Fed is getting bigger and bigger each passing day. Torture has been used on innocent civilians. Posse Comitatus is under fire. So call Patriot Act does away with the 4th amendment and now we have George W Bush's personal lawyer endorsed by Harry Reid as  an arbriter of constitutional rights....

Think about this. They really do have your money and they're spending like drunken sailors.

What do you do with the drunken sailor?

by turnerbroadcasting 2005-10-04 05:18AM | 0 recs
Re: you are correct, but
I don't think that there's a single person with any political sense that would subscribe to characterization  you've written above: not a single person would expect "uncompromising" politicians -- certainly not "lefty" politicians -- to win national office.  

I agree with the first commenter above, bruh21, I think you've confused some issues that are simply and utterly unrelated.  

by bedobe 2005-10-03 10:53PM | 0 recs
Placating the extremists
There are two forces on politicians. One is the centrifugal one you point out--to be "mainstream" and form coalitions and compromises, there's a restorative force to the center.

There's another centripetal force, though. It serves the interests of the extreme views within a coalition to be always about ready to bolt the coalition. (Witness Nader voters in 2000.) Unless a politician placates those with such views, he or she is in danger of having another effective party form alongside him or her. Balancing the need to produce results through compromise and the constant cry for more extreme positions is a difficult job.

by gregbillock 2005-10-03 09:27PM | 0 recs
Unlike the Religious Right...
I can't just make myself believe the entire package of issues that a particular party is running on.  I see no real problem with debating issues that are important, even if the Party you want to win is not in line with all of your ideas.  Groupthink is not something I have an interest in and it seems to be what people are pushing for lately.  It's a kind of "let's all protest the same way and get behind the candidates no matter what, etc."  
It's worthwhile for a political party to decide which issues are important to them, but they have to do that based on what those who intend to vote for them are demanding.  They are the ones who have to balance issues and votes, not me.
There are a few deal-breakers for me in terms of voting for a particular party.  Or one, at least:  The Fucking Bogus War In Iraq (note name change).  If the Democrats think they are getting my vote without calling for a pullout from there, they have eaten the brown acid.
by steve expat 2005-10-03 09:28PM | 0 recs
These lectures really aren't helping
I think this comment largely misses the point of what left Democrats are saying. Take the vote on the bankruptcy bill for example.  Opposition to that bill is hardly "outside the mainstream," yet many Democrats voted for it anyway. Why? Was a "yes" vote really necessary to keep those Democratic congressmen who voted for it in office? Or were they just listening to their campaign contributors?

Now multiply that several-fold: labor-backed congressmen who voted for CAFTA; the abject failure to offer any kind of leadership or coherent alternative policy on Iraq or foreign policy in general, and so on.

The issue is not that the left so much wants Democratic politicians to toe the line on every single issue. But on issues that are critical to a progressive revival, like stopping obscene corporate giveaways that have no rationale other than to keep the contributions rolling in, they expect our folks to be on the side of working and middle-class people.

If, as a party, Dem pols would stand up and show spine on those sorts of issues more often, I bet you would find much more tolerance of individual deviations on various issues.

by tgeraghty 2005-10-03 10:03PM | 0 recs
Fair enough
The issue is not that the left so much wants Democratic politicians to toe the line on every single issue. But on issues that are critical to a progressive revival, like stopping obscene corporate giveaways that have no rationale other than to keep the contributions rolling in, they expect our folks to be on the side of working and middle-class people.

Maybe these are the key issues for you, and I largely stand with you on the issues you cite. But this isn't what I'm talking about here.

I don't disagree with you on the Bankruptcy Bill. CAFTA's more complicated, however. The Iraq War was a mistake and I thought so at the time. I've opposed it since '02. But I do understand why the Dems voted as they did - this doesn't mean I agree with or excuse their votes. But  for many of them, political calculations of one sort or another were there. Do you really think that voting against the Iraq War was a winning position - politically - heading into '02? In the wake of 9/11? With Bush still polling in the 60s as a "popular wartime president"?

I'm really tired of these arguments in which people continue to talk past each other. There is a difference between short term and long term strategy. And filibustering Roberts or Miers is not practical either way. Nor is telling the middle 5% of the political spectrum to fuck off. We shouldn't create politics specifically catered to their needs, but we can't simply ignore them either.

by Ben P 2005-10-03 10:14PM | 0 recs
Re: Fair enough
Yes, CAFTA is complicated, and its' possible to make a case for it. But the working class folks we desperately need to join us in a anti-Republican coalition sure as hell aren't clamoring for it.

On the Iraq war, voting for it certainly hasn't been a winning position. Prescient arguments against the war were available to anybody who was interested at the time. You're damn right I think the Democrats would be in a far stronger position now had more of them opposed the whole thing on principle from the beginning, or even if more of them had simply asked tough questions about the ever-shifting justifications and flimsy evidence offered by proponents, rather than roll over and give Bush his war, which is what happened. Now the Dems are essentially complicit in it, which was basically Bush's winning argument last fall and a big reason why they are afraid to offer any kind of alternative policy now.

So maybe political calculations were there, but they have turned out to be lousy ones. Why should anybody listen to the Bidens or Liebermans of the world about the alleged political strategy behind these votes? They are terrible at political strategy.

by tgeraghty 2005-10-03 10:40PM | 0 recs
The thing about Iraq
To varying degrees, I think a number of Dems really did (I don't think very many still do, however) buy into the whole neocon worldview. I think a number of other Dems voted as they did for political calculation, a number of others did simply because they bought the intelligence/nat. security angle.

However, while I think your point about Iraq last fall is in part correct, I also think that the opposite approach probably wasn't quite yet enough. I think not enough people had turned on the war last fall to make this a winning strategy. The bottom line was that the politics of Iraq aren't really "rational," in ways I think that fervent supporters and opponents haven't ever really understood. The American public backed Iraq purely as revenge, as a "statement of purpose" in the wake of 9/11. The sense that Afghanistan "didn't quite seem like enough." It was purely a "lets kick some ass" thing. Now people - or at least a key segment who have this kind of world view - have been sated or now realize the thing was prob. a mistake. But nevertheless, Bush could more convincingly play (esp. last fall, when the post-9/11 mood still had life) the part of "ass kicker" to John Kerry - partly because of a narrative about the two parties and foreign policy that stretches back to the Vietnam War.

The reason Bush won is really very simple. He made enough people doubt Kerry would "do what it takes" to defend the country. It has little to do with actual policy and a lot to do with subconscious visceral emotion.

by Ben P 2005-10-03 11:10PM | 0 recs
Re: The thing about Iraq
While I think there is a lot of truth in what you say about the politics of Iraq, I also think the problem goes deeper than that.

It's not just that people think that Democrats won't defend the country from external enemies, althought that may be part of it.

It's really a deeper sense that Democrats don't have any fixed principles; they'll say anything they think you want to hear to get elected.

It's as if Democrats are seen as the ultimate in unprincipled political calculators.

And I think that feeds into questions about whether Democrats allegedly have the spine to defend the country ("if they won't stand up for themselves . . .").

And, in the end, I'm not really troubled by all this back and forth, as nasty as it may get sometimes, because I think it's essential to working out exactly what it is we believe in, what our values are, how far do we want to go in terms of policy, where will we compromise and where should we draw the lines in the sand that won't be crossed.

But before we decide where and when to compromise, I think we need to do more work on deciding just what it is we believe in. Otherwise we are little more than those political calculators that many Americans seem to think we are.

by tgeraghty 2005-10-03 11:40PM | 0 recs
Re: The thing about Iraq
Both of you have made very good points.  Ben is right that we need to think about long- and short-term strategy.  You are clearly right about the need for Dems to get back to fundamental principles like fairness, opportunity for all, sustainability and privacy that the Party can run on, tailored to local conditions.  People need to understand the need for coalitions, for winning elections, before we have the power to enact what needs to be done.  We just don't have enough elected Democrats in Congress to be able to jettison any of them right now, nor do we have enough voters on our side that we can afford to alienate any groups that are realistically available to us.  

Politics is the art of the possible.  It isn't a fantasy game.  It is ultimately about getting in a position to enact more beneficial policies to alleviate suffering and help the country be a better place.  It isn't about winning or feeling good or vindicated or kicking ass.  Those are George Bush politics, not our politics.  And as I have said before, you must be what you seek, practice what you want now, or in getting what you think you want you will find that you have lost what is most important.

by Mimikatz 2005-10-04 08:52AM | 0 recs
in terms of pure politics, you're right. But the Dems didn't back it except for a few folks whose districts would have benefitted economically.
by Ben P 2005-10-03 11:11PM | 0 recs
What have you been smoking?
Were are turning into a facist state and the Democrats are playing like the Washington Generals to the Harlem Globetrotters.

We are not talking about protecting illegal drugs were are talking about basic human rights. A women'a right to her own body and in 2007 it looks like African Americans are going to lose their right to vote with the non renewal of the Voting Rights Act... welcome Jim Crow laws... and now they will have the SCOTUS to back up all of their IDEOLOGIES.

They are already preparing for their extreme ideologies... Indiana is formulating a bill "The Crime of "Unauthorized Reproduction"
New law will require marriage as a legal condition of motherhood"

So while the right is intent on forcing their medevil ideologies on the country the DLC/NDN is telling Democrats to give up theirs... go figure.

by Parker 2005-10-03 10:37PM | 0 recs
Who are you kidding?
Simply not realistic to expect similar things

The GOP are delivering to their base a THEOCRACY which is against everything the US Constitution stands for and you have the freaking nerve to say the Democrats should not expect to be given basic human rights by the Federal government.

This is the most ridiculous disgusting thing I have ever heard...Go tell Simon Rosenberg to shut the hell up... and I can tell him where to shove his "think tank".

What is so vile is that your type of Democrats aligned with the DLC/NDN who sell your owm mothers for a lobbying contract... now how personal is that.

by Parker 2005-10-03 10:51PM | 0 recs
Re: Who are you kidding?
You sound hysterical. Take a step back, and take a deep breath. You are doing no one - the left, the blog community, yourself - any good.
by Norcal Lib 2005-10-04 04:55PM | 0 recs
The party matters
"Join a third party in a local election," you say.  This is why the democratic party is where it is today.  Its that simple.  

It doesn't matter if it is the local, state of federal level, party does matter.  Rightwing republicans now this.   They understand it perfectly.  40 or 50 years ago they began a fight within a party they did agree with on many issues.   But they organized - at all levels - and they raised money, and they developed candidates, and they tested messages, and they never waivered and they never gave in.  They were (are?) the political version of 'Terminators'.

Today the rightwing controls Congress and the White House, and the Surprem Court.  They got there by developing a powerbase within their party, not by supporting third party candidates.

I think some democrats need to take the long view and see what it really takes to build a lasting majority.  Then they need to decide if they are up to the challenge.

by dpANDREWS 2005-10-04 05:26AM | 0 recs
Dead on
I was just talking to a friend of mine who goes to school in Canada and we were having this exact conversation.  She was talking about Canadian coalition politics and I was telling her that the two American political parties are coalitions as well.  This is a point that has to be understood.  I also think that a lot of people on the web could use a course on rudimentary political tactics.  While I believe in standing up for what you believe in I don't believe that you can just run full bore into people and expect them to get on your side.

It's make me think of the Socratic argument about courage where Socrates is told that one can only be courageous by charging into the thick of battle.  Socrates counters that a potential retreat from battle could lead to a later loss by your enemy and thus could be equally courageous.  Those who wish to consistently smash heads and rabble-rouse should consider the merits of retreating to gain ground.  (and I don't mean this in some kind of dlc way, think more like sun tzu)

by ECLE 2005-10-04 06:05AM | 0 recs
It's Not About the Personal: It's About Leadership

I wrote the following in response to those that criticized the feedback that posters at DailyKos offered Sen. Obama after he submitted his diary. I think that many have missed the substance of what those posters were trying to say, and believe me, I think that they -- as do I -- understand very well the cliche that "politics is the art of the possible," and so on. Moreover, no one with any political sense is advocating that Democrats must be rabid partisans in their opposition to Republicans; all that people want is for Dems to, as I put it: I want elected Democrats... to provide affirmative/concrete leadership in crafting a Democratic brand/message that we can rally behind.

Please read on and let me know your thoughts on what I write below:

Senator Obama & a Great Day for Democracy

I first posted this as a series of comments in response to diarists dismayed at the welcoming that Senator Obama received from what's been affectionately described as the "rabble" over at DailyKos .

I've been heartened by what I've witnessed in response to the Senator's diary; because it's been a great exercise in democracy, 21st century style.

Senator Obama has not been dismissed nor belittled in the more thoughtful responses/diaries; and, if he is truly interested in hearing what Americans -- all Americans, not just what insiders consider "Average Americans" -- have to say, than am sure that he and his staff appreciate much of the feedback earnestly submitted by this group of Americans.   Moreover, Senator Obama's main message, that we should act with "civility" and not-throw-the-baby-out-with-the-bath-water over one vote, is hard to dismiss out of hand and to argue against -- I mean, it's just plain commonsense, though rather innocuous and lacking substance.  And, while the Senator's advice and gesture are appreciated, at this point, it simply is much too little and much too late.  In stead, this group of Americans demand and need more from their elected representatives.  Here's what I believe the "rabble," Americans all, is looking for -- at least this is what I want: I want my elected Democratic representatives to more stridently advocate Progressive principles and to provide affirmative/concrete leadership in crafting a Democratic brand/message that we can rally behind. It's that simple.

Now, in the marketplace of ideas, competing brands/messages arise frequently and, eventually, one vision wins out.  However, for this to occur, there must be enterprising salesmen/political leaders aggressively presenting their competing visions, and the public then decides which brand/message obtains their support.  However, because the marketplace of ideas is often saturated with products, salesman/political leaders must be assertive and aggressive in presenting their product.  It is in this last part of the process that we, Americans, feel the Democratic sales force has failed on.  The Democratic party sales team is, it appears, content in picking up the scraps from the failures of the dominant Republican brand -- even as that brand is showing clear signs of overexposure, unsatisfactory customer support and an incapacity to meet the American public's demand for real leadership.  And yet, rather than mounting an aggressive and glossy ad campaign to attract customers and to invigorate the Democratic brand, the Democratic sales force is content with mediocre gains at the margins.  To illustrate, look at what Apple did when it was on the brink of extinction: it innovated, brought new products/ideas to market, presented an integrated marketing strategy for its entire line of products (from the iMac to iTunes to the iPod), and it aggressively saturated the market place with vibrant glossy ads and well honed message -- going so far as to open stores, something a lot people criticized -- presenting Apple products as the alternative to the bland Windows beige PCs.  (By the way, am a Windows user.)  Today Apple enjoys economic success, has seen its market share rise and it continues to drive innovation and ideas in the PC industry, often setting the standard -- even as Windows based systems collectively have market dominance.

Again, I urge understanding, the response to Senator Obama has little to do with partisan purity or orthodoxy... it is more simple than that... it's as basic as expecting our elected Dems to stand up to the bully and to give voice to our frustration.  Am sure we all understand and appreciate how the vast majority of the grassroots -- my self included -- are simply tired of hearing about comity and so-called moderation when we (Democrats and Progressives collectively) have been taking it on the gut since the Gingrich Revolution, through the Clinton Presidency, the post-2000 elections, the charges against our patriotism during the 2002-midterm elections, the Iraq debacle and the Swift boating of John Kerry.  And, yes, this list doesn't even begin to record the grievances against the Republican party... not by a long shot. Remember, recent polls confirm that we, Progressives and America at large, want and expect the Democrats to stand up to the Republican party.  And, as to the charge of "obstructionist," you know that it -- and worse -- will be made, because that's what Republicans do, have done and will do... so let's not be surprised when they react exactly as expected.

Moreover, a lot of the responses to Senator Obama have been extremely thoughtful, and if he and his staff have any sense -- which am sure they do --, they'll find a lot themes to adopt and messages to fine tune.  The DailyKos community has done the Senator a service, which am sure he appreciates -- it is, after all, a two way street... he "spoke," and we responded -- democracy at work.

Remember, it is the role of elected officials to hear their constituents and to represent them.  Now, this is how it's supposed to work in theory, I understand.  In the real world, the people are supposed defer to authority... at least that's how it works.  Well, I say, why not let theory win out for once... why not let OUR elected representative hear how it really is... how we feel... and how WE want more than innocuous calls for "civility" and to not-throw-the-baby-out-with-the-bath-water.  After all, it's supposed to be By the People, For the People; and not, From Elected Officials, For Elected Officials.  We, here at DailyKos and across America, We are the people... today we've seen democracy in action... we've gathered in the 21st century version of a democratic forum and aired our concerns and aspirations to an elected Democratic official that honored us by opening dialogue.  The people, hopefully, will have been heard and OUR representative and OUR democracy will be the better for it.

by bedobe 2005-10-04 10:31AM | 0 recs
Big tent

I've grown weary of the bickering going on at Kos, which is especially demoralizing when we should be concentrating on the implosion of the conservatives just one year into Bush's second term. Much of it is their own doing, and we should be helping the right wing along in its demise. Instead, much time is taken up by food fights, with the people throwing the most food saying it's healthy.

Maybe my view is archiac, but the big tent concept of the Democratic Party means you are afforded the opportunity to come in an express your view. Centrist to fringe left. Doesn't matter. Come, express yourself, and see if you can find and build support for your ideas.

One problem, as I see it, is the many Kos posters who enter the tent thinking their views MUST be accepted by virtue of the purity of their principles. They are simplying unwilling to consider any view other than their own.

I think Obama has a blind spot, but I would never treat him the way many in the Kos community did. That was shameful.

by Norcal Lib 2005-10-04 02:51PM | 0 recs


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