Thursday, October 14, 2004


Hertsgaard, Mark. "Left in the wings/The looming fight for the heart and soul of the Democratic Party". San Francisco Chronicle. 2004 October 10.

Fights over a political party's future are common after the party loses a big election. But John Kerry figures to face a fight over control of the party from fellow Democrats even if he beats George W. Bush on Nov. 2. Influential figures on the party's left wing are planning a long-term campaign to move the Democrats to the left, just as right-wing activists took over the Republican Party and moved it to the right over the past 30 years.
F*ck no! You're the loony bastards responsible for the marginalization of the American left for the two and a half decades before Clinton!
In the short run, the left-wingers are working hard to elect Kerry, even though they regard him as representing the party's cautious center. In the primaries, most of the left preferred Howard Dean, the former Vermont governor, whose populist, anti-war candidacy threatened to wrest the nomination from Kerry, to the horror of the party establishment. The left is uniting behind Kerry out of a widely shared conviction that a second Bush term would be an unmitigated, perhaps irreversible, disaster. "Four more years of George Bush would destroy the country," Dean said in announcing last summer that he would campaign hard for Kerry.
Aren't you the @$$holes who put Bush into office in the first place by supporting Nader? Yeah, I'm looking at you, Michael Moore. How about a little personal accountability, you fat f*ck.
To support its demands, the left will argue that Kerry could not have beaten Bush without its help. And it will have a point, on both ideological and organizational grounds.
If Bush wins on Nov. 2, the battle for control of the Democratic Party will probably come quickly. Leftists will argue that Kerry and the centrists forfeit any right to leadership if they cannot defeat the most vulnerable incumbent since Jimmy Carter.
So if Bush wins, the leftmost fringe of Democrats will try to seize control of the party. And if Bush loses, the leftmost fringe of Democrats will try to seize control of the party.

I had hoped that the Clinton administration marked for the American left a sea change from posturing to pragmatism. Then, I figured that four years of Dubya and, through their support of Ralph Nader in 2000, their accountability for that would have reinforced the lesson for any recidivists. Obviously f*cking not.

Hat tip: CenterFeud