To Be a Fighting Centrist

I am a Centrist. I believe the Democratic Party is a centrist Party. I wish the Democratic Party would fight for its centrist ideals. Like ending the the war in Iraq. Like not going to war in Iran. Like bringing balance to our tax system by reversing the extreme and radical Bush tax cuts. Like doing something about global warming. Like protecting equal rights for all Americans. Like protecting the right to choose. Like offering health care to all Americans. And so on. These Democratic principles stand in the center of American public opinion, held by a strong majority of Americans.

The Republican Party is an extreme party whose views are completely out of the mainstream of American thought. The views espoused by the GOP must be marginalized and beaten at every turn. It is because of this that I strongly dislike this view articulated by Sen. Hillary Clinton:

During this campaign, you're going to hear me talk a lot about the importance of balance,” she began, after acknowledging that the Bush Administration had gone too far toward deregulation in most areas. “You know, our politics can get a little imbalanced sometimes. We move off to the left or off to the right, but eventually we find our way back to the center because Americans are problem solvers. We are not ideologues. Most people are just looking for sensible, commonsense solutions.”

I think the views may be correct but it is poor politicking. Clinton needs to espouse her views on issues. Her problem solving views, not give silly buzzwords that implicitly relegate her Party to the extremes. It ignores that there is an extreme political party in the United States. The Republican Party. It ignores that there is a pragmatic, centrist problem solving party, the Democratic Party. This fight is not beyond politics. It is the CENTRAL political fight going on in this country. I wish Democrats, including Hillary Clinton would get that.

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  1. By the way, grandma Vera wasn’t always happy about that tendency of mine when we had our little political discussions.  She thought that it would come back to bite me one day and in a way it has.  Because I’m not a lawyer I didn’t understand until now the importance of all the facts and arguments being placed front and center before we attempt the next step of problem solving.  I believe that progressives are good problem solvers who understand that we can’t just lock into problem solving mode and then wait patiently for the Republican party to clarify what those problems are.  The Democratic party is STUCK in this pathetic “problem solving mode” where they spend all day trying to solve the problems that the Repubs actually create and sometimes only dream up……..problems that never had the oxygen to exist before the Democratic party got so stuck on being problem solvers and quit also being problem clarifiers and having the problems they point out also using some of the oxygen in the atmosphere that will sustain acknowledged problems!  It’s so frustrating sometimes and listening to Hillary go down that road one more time right along with Obama when he goes there just gives me a fricken military wife headache from hell.

    • pfiore8 on November 13, 2007 at 5:09 pm

    1. “I wish the Democratic Party would fight for its centrist ideals”… we have to get out of this monolith thinking. ‘the democratic party” is made up of US. our blind spot is thinking that this other god-like entity will save us. NO IT WON’T. we have to save ourselves. we have to stop seeing the democratic party as some living thing outside of ourselves. it’s simple. citizens have to take on the work of being citizens and exercising their power in this form of gov’t. if they don’t then the reagans and bushs take over.

    2. “The Republican Party is an extreme party whose views are completely out of the mainstream of American thought.”

    exactly. and if your statement is true, then the action of the Dems is beyond disturbing, but downright frightening. so we end up back at your first statement. why aren’t the dems making a power move against these people so outside the mainstream? because the dem party has itself become outside the mainstream

    everybody says blogs aren’t good for more than blah blah blah

    i think differently… we should use this town square to either take back the dem party or start another and get some well-known public figures who might, just might, really have a love of country and would be willing to put it on the line to break down all the complicated lies and get us back to some simple truths and make clear the work we all need to do

    i don’t think people will shy away from the work… actually, i think a sense of purpose would serve our souls. putting away the crap and living leaner might be more peaceful and rich… that’s what i think

    • Edger on November 13, 2007 at 5:12 pm

    Centrist??? Bah! It’ll never fly.

    I wish the Democratic Party would fight for its centrist ideals. Like ending the the war in Iraq. Like not going to war in Iran. Like bringing balance to our tax system by reversing the extreme and radical Bush tax cuts. Like doing something about global warming. Like protecting equal rights for all Americans. Like protecting the right to choose. Like offering health care to all Americas.

    You don’t like killing people, you ask for people to be much too reasonable, and to make much too much sense, and to care too much about other people, and to be much too concerned with constitutional rights.

    What a nut!

    You’re an extreme centrist. Kind of the opposite of wingnut.  😉

  2. The fighting part?

    This is what tears at me.

    I want to FIGHT to get our country back.

    I DON”T think it will self correct back to anything like a true Center, no matter what Hill or anyone else says.

    How do we unite The People to fight?

    I can only think of one thing that a large group of People will rally around to fight back, something that has the potential to get The People involved and fighting back.

    You aren’t going to like it! But it should make for some interesting discussion!

    It is taking me some time to write it because I want to be as carefully radical as possible….I think we need some extremism of our own to get the balance back…but I want it to be responsible radicalism.

    But it keeps coming back to one thong for me….finding ways to fight back.

    • Turkana on November 13, 2007 at 5:44 pm

    talks purple.

    our two leading candidates both play to the middle, despite the fact that the middle is now to the right of where the right used to be.

  3. To have a center you need the edges that surround the middle. The center is where it all meets. Reagan destroyed the edges and made the core rotten, he pulled the edges of the Democrats into the rights core by calling it moderate, by allowing the worst of people to be considered ‘values’ and be cultural virtues, rationalized institutionalized greed, prejudice, intolerance, became the center. The outlying edges became vilified, the former center became radical. I’m not a centerist I’m hard left always have been, but I see the edges as needed for balance, and working coalitions the center cannot be extreme. I want my Party back so I can go back to being a lefty again not trying to make nice with faux Democrats, who are only interested in defining the center that Reagan, created, and the Clintons defined.        

    • Tigana on November 13, 2007 at 5:50 pm

    It’s the permanent war economy. Because economics dictates everything, there is no real difference between the red and the blue. Heads it’s Skull, Tails it’s Bones. Ketchup is a vegetable, and Heinz-Kerry makes it, and all the Congresscritters own shares (/snark). Neither Hillary nor Obama voted against waterboarding, perhaps because their Sponsors told them not to.

    Once, America had to get rid of slavery as a source of income. Now we are going to have to get rid of the military-industrial complex economy. To replace these, we have to create new, healthy, clean, profitable industries. We also have to save the planet right now….Hello, Citizen Gore!  

  4. that I see is that there is no party on the left.

    The Republicans are on the right – extreme, far right and have pulled the Democrats to the right as well. Without a viable force on the left, I believe a centrist party will alway veer to the right because that is where the pull is coming from.

    During the Cold War, the pull from the left was from the Soviet Union. There is no viable leftward pull yet on American politics, however if South and Central America does shift left and with the growing Hispanic population in the United States, that may be enough of a leftward gravitational pull to keep the Democratic party in the center. But, without a leftward pull the Democratic party veers right because that’s where the Republicans are.

    Therefore, I favor not a centrist Democratic Party, but a leftist Democratic Party and pull the Republicans back toward the center. I would much prefer having a strong leftist force in American politics than the soft, squishy weak center.

  5. into the void of these streams. The center of what? Where are the lines that define the Democratic party? The Republicans offer clearly defined irrational lines that will fit nicely into any hateful ideas you might have and you don’t need to think. I think the problem you address to the net goes beyond it’s confines and addresses the central question to our problem what is the democratic party? Our role in changing the status quo as a party has been abandoned for the winning the accumulation of meaningless, murky political power for what? I will fight however to make the center be someplace that you would feel is acceptable, and then later smooth the edges to fit my center.  

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