Interesting proposal to congressional progressives to form a new party!

   By Bill Willers

   Dear Representatives Kucinich et al.:

   There has never been a better time for the emergence of a strong third party as a permanent entity. Objective critics of the “system” have now understood that it is rotten beyond repair. Corporate “persons” rule in this two-party setup. “Reforms” are hopelessly inadequate. It should not be necessary to elaborate. What is necessary is revolutionary transformation rather than “change” as a mere campaign buzzword.

   As it is, truly progressive members of Congress who identify themselves as democrats are eclipsed – virtual nonentities really – by the Democratic Leadership Council which long ago took its place beside the GOP in the corporate sphere. Simply consider the media effort to “disappear” presidential candidate Kucinich following his unexpected strong showing in the first ABC “debate”, going so far as to cut him out of a widely-distributed photograph of the democratic presidential hopefuls, and then barring him from a future ABC “debate”. Members of the Congressional Progressive Caucus are allowed exposure primarily to the extent that they appear more “centrist” and “bipartisan”.

   Past efforts at anything “independent” or third party (e.g. the Green Party) have been grassroots efforts and failures for that reason. The only way for progressives to have a voice that can be heard throughout the country would be through a recognized Progressive Party, and that would have to emerge from within Congress – from within the Progressive Caucus, as well as the Congressional Black Caucus the values of which are so similar to that of the progressives.

   If a contingent of true progressives – that might include such representatives as Kucinich, Grijalva, Lee, Conyers, Baldwin – were to hold a press conference and announce the formation of a Progressive Party with platform to match, the earth would move. There would be a rush of support from progressives, the Green Party, unions, democrats who understand the betrayal from the DLC stranglehold, minority groups, independents seeking change and even from some “moderate” Republicans. And there would surely be renewed interest from the millions who have long since turned off in disgust over the systemic rot that has by now become utterly transparent…….


I fundamentally agree, that recent efforts to form new parties have been a failure is because they were grass roots. The republicans gained prominence more quickly because they cannibalized the disintigrating whig party for candidates. Abe Lincoln was a former Whig.

Put pressure on the progressives to quit the party. Then we will get more leverage on them and they will quit dismissing us. The party will already have elected members, so they can’t claim we are fringe.

I don’t believe a grassroots movement is possible with blogs like kos, anyway. I don’t think kos is grass roots. Kos is a partisan operative and a major player. Most of that blog is dominated by professional wonks, very closely aligned to known candidates. They are netwonks not netroots.


  1. n/t

  2. …. online, at that site, that the wonks don’t pay attention to the netroots.

    “The Importance of Plouffe”

    His entire op-ed is filled with common sense advice for Congressional Democrats many of whom aren’t going to listen to anyone in the netroots (which I define as the larger activist blogs) and quite frankly, the consultants that the netroots have elevated over the years. The difference between Plouffe and almost all the people who the netroots have pushed lately is that Plouffe has actually managed a winning presidential campaign and has an intimate knowledge of Congressional districts and races up and down the ballot.

    My impression of the author of this, for whatever it is worth, is that they must have been smoking crack.  Or just thinking like they had.

    If you’re a state party and you don’t get your shit together, well, get your shit together to do the field and communications support for Dems up and down the ballot. Same for individual Democrats who haven’t had a tough race in a few election cycles; make sure you are running hard.

    but I think a lot of its critics fundamentally misunderstand what OFA does and what it is designed to do.

    No, the longer we mere peons are exposed to OFA, the better we understand exactly what it is designed to do.

    and now for the part with the most infamous, unfortunate line:

    No bed-wetting. This will be a tough election for our party and for many Republican incumbents as well. Instead of fearing what may happen, let’s prove that we have more than just the brains to govern — that we have the guts to govern. Let’s fight like hell, not because we want to preserve our status, but because we sincerely believe too many everyday Americans will continue to lose if Republicans and special interests win.

    Whoever was uneducated enough to pen this part just pissed off every post menopausal liberal female in America, every male over age 50 with a prostate problem.  The problem isn’t cowardice,  it’s corruption of campaign finance and greed in your own political party.  Oh, and that bipartisanthingee.  Prez constantly cuts deals with the Repubs and then whines the liberals won’t support him as Republican donor money savages them ?  Team loyalty goes both ways.

    here’s more from the comments, in reply to somebody who said the DNC had abandoned Dean’s 50 state strategy.  

     The DNC has been in 50 states for months….

    …..One of the big myths is that the staffers the Dean DNC paid for in the states were a big help in federal races; that’s not true across the board.

    These are facts. If someone is telling you otherwise, they either have no idea what they’re talking about or are being dishonest. A lot of people in the netroots haven’t been on staff in a non-new media capacity in recent election cycles so are seriously out of touch with what is happening, and w/out the experience of being a staffer at HQ on a campaign in a non-new media capacity, they are unable to put into context the tidbits they hear.

    Ya huh.  Sure.  Out of touch.  Right- oh.  

    but there is a loud slice of the netroots that quite frankly won’t ever be satisfied with anything and continue to repeat the mistakes of liberal activists that we’ve been seeing for decades.

    The WH has been handholding and babying Congress. There’s been some tough love privately, but more of this tough love is happening publicly now.

    And on Marc Ambinder, a journalist

    He’s an idiot.  I’d pay to see him walk an urban Af-Am neighborhood and see how many people know who Joe Trippi is.  

    I’d like to see the author of these fine thoughts walk an urban African American neighborhood and see how many people think it’s okay to have a 50% unemployment rate, and no healthcare but that they can create out of taxing the healthcare benefits of the few who do have union jobs, but now there’s a really swell DNC poll consultant for the White House.

    “Netwonked.”   Ya huh.  

    You read it first at GOS.  I’m only repeating it here because the perps like to delete things after the fact.  Sounds like a shakedown coming to the ‘hood soon.

    I’d like my mandate back if y’all haven’t a clue what the hell to do with one.

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