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View Diary: An ideological realignment driven by demography (130 comments)

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  •  No one is ever prepared to give up power (1+ / 0-)
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    The real question is how strong their position is vis a vis those who want to take it away from them. US politics is shifting leftward, for various reasons, and the further to the right anyone is, the more power they're going to have to give up. Centrists are further to the right than progressives, so I can't see how they get to keep all their power. Look at what's happening to Blue Dogs and ConservaDems. And progressives are getting better at politics.

    We're not going to have a Sweden-like social democratic nirvana here any time soon, but the days of low taxes for the rich, deregulation and social conservatives dominating politics are over. The real question is how far to the left we'll move.

    "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

    by kovie on Sun Nov 25, 2012 at 11:38:08 AM PST

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    •  Conservatives in the Democratic Party (0+ / 0-)

      They hold a lot of money and power.

      So, I see a future in which they will use that to retard any changes (e.g., rule changes to make it harder, packing leadership rules so new voices can not break through, etc).

      I am not as hopeful as you are.

      I think the electorate will be more left of center than right of center with things like Medicare for all becoming more possible (although not certain), but I also think the two-parties have acted in concert to prevent any real change from the corporate interests that control politics, and I don't see them changing or  allowing change to occur.

      My guess is that they will put a series of trojan horse candidates or hollowed out policies that look the part. The problem is that neither will have any impact on the situationf or voters in the long term, and I also believe that overtime it will lead to greater voter apathy. I am not convinced this will mean better outcomes to the left other than in rhetoric. BUt we will see.

      •  And this is how to challenge their power (0+ / 0-)
        I think the electorate will be more left of center than right of center
        We've gotten so used to losing on the left that we've forgotten how to win, and in democratic politics there is and has always been only one way to do that, political pressure. If we can leverage the increasingly left-leaning tendencies of voters to pressure centrists and Repubs, then that's the ballgame. They can keep their valued spots on MTP and Morning Shmoe so long as on policy, they yield.

        Every far-right nutjob they nominate in the GOP makes it easier for us to elect a Dem. Every centrist Dem who votes with Repubs becomes more primariable. The politics of the nation are shifting our way. We just need to know how to exploit it.

        The Reagan era is over.

        "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

        by kovie on Sun Nov 25, 2012 at 12:34:11 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  And on cue (0+ / 0-)

      I read this after posting here

      CA is an example of the demographic future.

    •  Centrism is not ideologically coherent. (1+ / 0-)
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      This is both a boon and a curse for conservatives and liberals.

      Oh, there are some centrists who have their curious blend of positions as what to them is a principled move -- sadly, Obama is one of them -- but most of our centrist politicians are so out of political opportunity.

      If you want to keep centrists from defecting, just take measures to ensure that what you're doing won't get them kicked out of office. The Blue Dog Caucus by and large didn't defect because they're secret conservatives; they defected because Wall Street was turning on Obama and stimulus/Obamacare was unpopular in their home states.

      If you want to figure out the behavior of ideological centrists (who are few) and opportunistic centrists (who are many) observe how they act and talk after an election. Reid and Durbin are examples of the latter, Obama is an example of the former.

      •  We need to stop being so nice and eager (0+ / 0-)

        to make friends and cut deals. Politics is how you get the best policies passed, period, and which way you have to make it happen. As the saying goes, if you want a friend in politics, get a dog. We need to politically pressure anyone who refuses to go along with progressive politics into going along.

        "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

        by kovie on Sun Nov 25, 2012 at 12:36:03 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

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