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View Diary: The Left Drops the Ball (244 comments)

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  •  I've got some pretty strong feelings about (6+ / 0-)

    the left blogosphere and its "intelligencia". But I won't go too deep into that right now other than to say that the same things that prevent the Real Professional Left (DNC, DSCC et al) to get on board prevent the online supposedly True Left from signing on. Many are not activists. They are the folks who, in college, loved to talk about injustice but rarely actually organized or participated in rallies. It's academic and a fun mental exercise talking about this stuff. But you need acwhole different constitution to get off your ass and back it up with action. When i was in university, I called them "The Illustrious And Distiguished Members of the Gon-do Club". Always talking about what they're "gon(na) do" but amazingly never actually doing anything. I never saw the talkers at the rallies. I stopped looking for them eventually.

    On another note: i posted a diary earlier with some concrete ideas about how to get things fixed. Not all of it makes sense but it'd be a good starting point for, shall I say it? Discussion. (irony)

    I've become re-radicalized. Thanks a lot you bunch of oligarchical fascist sons-of-bitches. But once again, I have no choice. Bring it the fuck on.

    by mdmslle on Sat Oct 01, 2011 at 11:07:55 AM PDT

    •  I don't think we're thinking of the same people (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      I would include: David Graeber, Chris Hedges, Stiglitz, Jared Bernstein, Paul Krugman, Mike Konczal, etc. People with potentially useful expertise to offer and who have been consistently alligned.

      And good for you with the specific suggestions. I'm updating to include.

      Thousands of years ago the question was asked: 'Am I my brother's keeper?' That question has never yet been answered in a way that is satisfactory to civilized society. ~ Eugene V. Debbs

      by PlutocracyFiles on Sat Oct 01, 2011 at 11:37:33 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  A wide spectrum. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        alizard, DawnN

        Hedge's agedna long term is different from Krugman's as I see.  One seeks a more radical transformation; the other a essentailly a reform capitalist/social democrat who may appear more left than he is because our nation's rightward move over the last 30 years.  Krugman and Stiglitz are more "mainstream" overall.

        A coailition involving these folks would be relatively broad based.

        Say Wall Street is occupied for day after day, where does it go next?  Not being critical, just wondering how to translate people on the street into change.  Arguably, it raises consciousness and radicalizes more people.  That, in itslef, is good.  Ibn addition, the pilots joining and other folks joining is very good.  

        Wish this had happened in 2009.  

        Anyway, very good diary.

        More jobs equal less debt, even our kids can understand that.

        by TomP on Sat Oct 01, 2011 at 11:51:13 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Correct, but their goals are irrelvant (4+ / 0-)

          They will NOT be determining goals. They can be useful in providing background and expertise if its needed.

          I've stumbled on something discussing this - namely, I think I worry about not having ideas ready if they're needed. That's how the Left gets hijacked - the Right has think tanks, etc. ready with whatever they need.

          I would like to see the Left getting things together that could be useful. I would like to see the Left providing information. It's just information - it's not decisions, it's not pushing an agenda (or, if it is, it should be rejected).

          Thousands of years ago the question was asked: 'Am I my brother's keeper?' That question has never yet been answered in a way that is satisfactory to civilized society. ~ Eugene V. Debbs

          by PlutocracyFiles on Sat Oct 01, 2011 at 12:14:51 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  Historically speaking . . . (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          TomP, DawnN, orlbucfan

          Either it peters out as it goes on and fewer and fewer people show up and eventually it gets too damned cold over the winter and it fizzles.

          Or it grows and grows.  And law enforcement gets nervous, so they send more and more enforcement in to harass the demonstrators.  They start to claim that merely occupying space and breathing air is against the law and round them up and take them off to prisons.

          Then you have another fork.  Either the demonstrators say, "okay, we got a rise out of The Man" and quit.  Or they come right back.  For every one that gets taken to jail, others come out of the woodwork.  This is more likely to happen if one or two innocent people get killed, and less likely to happen if a couple dozen are killed at once.  There is a certain calculus of individual survival that goes into these things.

          If larger and larger groups of demonstrators KEEP showing up, the rulers reach a point where they can no longer effectively rule unless they get rid of the demonstrators.  So they have to either throw some bones to the mob, or send in the army.

          If they throw bones, it's very important for the mob to have strong, tough leaders who can negotiate a real deal.  In the absence of good leadership, random assortments of dissatisfied people can be bought off for little but symbolic gestures.

          If they send in the army, then you have another fork.  Does the army shoot?  In most cases, it does, especially if it is a professional, mercenary force working for pay.  However, if it is predominantly lower-class troops with families experiencing the same problems causing the protests, then it is likely to go over to the protesters.  At that point, the government falls and you call it a revolution.

          This progression assumes that it remains nonviolent throughout and no mass breaks of discipline occur.  Violence makes it much more likely that troops will both be called in and will remain loyal to the government, shooting demonstrators.  If large-scale violence IS attempted, it must be sudden, overwhelming, and successful enough to scare the government into immediate capitulation, like storming a lightly-guarded prison (the Bastille) by a mob of thousands with no warning while the guards are half-dozing in the heat of late afternoon.

          Sum of a decade's worth of research, for what it's worth.  Successful revolutions start this way.  But 90% of successful beginnings never go anywhere.

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