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April 12, 2011


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Obama has managed to neutralize the Left like no one else could have. Even when the R's lose, they win.

Now u write about leaders making terrible deals and compromises but in ur prior post u credit Obama for one of those...honestly, now I am mystified.

U make me think there's some unintentional victim blaming here. Corrente, for ex, gets some credit for being vocal from the margins but then is somehow blamed for not being more transformative, despite the reality that they are marginal in the broader left debate. This may not b ur point, but before u start pounding on ur keyboard again, this is what is coming thru to me.

For the larger blogs, I can't speak as well to those, which is why I don't use them as my own examples. But I think u would b well served by being more precise in ur writing generally like u r in this post.

I agree with a lot of jinbs critique that followed my query about yelling in the last post. It is the reality that as activists we will struggle with what is desirable v. what is achievable. I think u have a tendency to prefer the achievable as u see it and then express frustration with those w/ less appetite for pragmatism. I also am not sure what ur expectations for good, promising ideas are. I do have a similar impression to jinbs that quite a bit is dismissed pretty quickly.

I have more thoughts but can't deal with typing any more of this on my phone! More later.

I don't mind the piling on... but seriously, this is not about me or my take on things; my point - one which we've had head nodding agreement on in the past, is that the left is fractured, paralyzed, and generally not accomplishing what needs to be done. I don't think that's wildly controversial, or mistaken. Secondly, I think a good example of what's not happening is that lefty blogs - many of which began with a great deal of energy and promise - have devolved into a bifurcated system of establishment embracing, mainstream successes, and less impactful outliers. I don't have an expectation of "transformative" (whatever that means), so much as "taking action" more than "finger pointing." I don't think it's crazy or unreasonable to be frustrated and expect more. As J says - and I completely agree - Obama has effectively neutralized much of the energy on the left. I don't expect miracles. I do think if we want to see change, surely more change than we've seen, then there's a duty to take action. We, as lefties, are not doing a great job of living up to that call. Like that or not, agree with me or not... but don't blame me, alone, for what's not happening here.

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