MOLA:42’s Guide to Core Democratic Values
There aren’t any.
Standard Disclaimer: My opinions are my own and not necessarily those of the…
Yeah, I guess I’m being just a bit vague.
Last week I used the phrase “Core Democratic Values” several times in comments here and elsewhere concerning the Humboldt County Democratic Central Committee taking leave of its collective senses; I admit I was wrong.
Let me explain myself with a story…. (Oh God! another STORY…)
When I was quite young every couple of years our family would bundle into the station wagon and drive south to Oakland to visit my Grandma’s House (A GRANDMA story? Have you no shame?). It seemed odd to my eight or so year-old self that every time we visited her she lived someplace different.
But no matter where she was living; on the living room wall on the left hand side would be a picture of Franklin Delano Roosevelt, on the right a picture of John F. Kennedy (later replaced with a picture of the assassinated Kennedy brothers) and in the middle… a portrait of Jesus Christ.
Now that’s a Democrat.
Her husband always liked to show off his Hi-Fi system every chance he got. He’d pump that puppy to full volume and we would watch the pictures dance (and things fall off the shelves).
“You hear that?” he’d yell at the top of his lungs. “Listen to those magnets! This baby has got some powerful magnets!”
That may explain why Grandma had to move every year or so…
Anyway, my parents were also liberal Democrats; as am I.
MY Core Values mean a lot to me.
But one needs to look at how the modern two-party system came into existence to realize just how silly it is to say my (or any) Core Values apply to any political party.
During the days of FDR, or for that matter even the days of my own youth, beliefs meant nothing in party politics. The Democratic Party in the “Deep South” had the intensely conservative “Dixiecrats”; some very liberal Democrats were in the northeast and everywhere else had folks all over the ideological map. Yet everyone was (supposed to be) happily gathered together under the same party.
It went back to the Civil War; Democrats were the Confederacy in the South; in the North the main anti-war movement was mostly the Democratic Party (or “copperheads” as they were called, a type of poisonous snake). After the war both groups had just one thing in common; they hated the Republicans passionately and that kept the factions of the Democratic Party locked together for over a hundred years.
For instance the Dixiecrats despised FDR; but at least he wasn’t a Republican.
The Republicans of course underwent a similar evolution. The Republicans liked to stuffily style themselves as “the Party of Business” (despite Republican President Theodore Roosevelt being known as the “Trust Buster,” a breaker of predatory corporate monopolies).
Party membership had more to do with common goals and less to do with ideology; it was mostly a matter of what political “Machine” you were a part of or the region where you were born. Things were simpler then, less decision making was involved.
Might explain why voter numbers are falling.
All this led to interesting photo ops such as: The bullies standing in the entrances of “Whites Only” schools “bravely” fending off African-American children were Democrats while a Democrat President “convinced” them to move aside (backed by Federal Troops).
All of that began to change when Republican Karl Rove and company came up with what was known as the “Southern Plan.” They lured Deep South Democrats into the Republican fold by pointing out the pro-Civil Rights and slightly left-of-center leaning of the Democratic Party demonstrated the Dixiecrats were no longer properly appreciated.
But changes were brought about that the “Southern Plan” schemers did not foresee. Shed of the Dixiecrats the Democrats moved more to the left. Burdened with the Dixiecrats, the Republicans were dragged to the right. There wasn’t much left of the middle.
Something else also happened.
In the “old” days ideological poses naturally gave way to doing “business”; but not as much now. How do you (a congress member) explain to your Tea Party constituents that in exchange for your vote for “Obama Care” you got a sweet deal for the Government Widget Contractor in your district?
This on the surface sounds good; less “pork barrel” corruption as congress members are not as able to sell their votes for “deals” that favored their communities (otherwise known as “bi-partisan support”).
However, a direct result is now we have two parties that can no longer speak to each other to reach consensus; whose sole aim is to get their man or woman in office and get their opponents out; playing to their “bases” to the exclusion of getting anything accomplished.
That is all the two party system ever had to offer… each party existing solely to get its own into office; toys for those who like to play political games. Neither the Democratic nor the Republican Party ever dealt seriously with their own ideologies: After all, “ideology” and “electability” are mutually exclusive concepts.
So if Matthew Owen (AKA “Matthew in the Middle,” local wheeler-dealer for the Right) wants to take over the local Democratic Party that’s his business. If the local Democratic leadership is fool enough to go along with him then that’s their business.
Middle Matt only wants the local Democratic Party because it has the infrastructure to get his candidates elected. The Humboldt Democratic Central Committee wants Middle Matt because he provides candidates that can win. They deserve each other.
The rest of us Democrats are of no account.
“Core Democratic Values”: It seems I wrote on behalf of something as real as the Easter Bunny and Santa Claus; I must turn my back on a beloved childhood fairy tale I believed in all my life.
And that is why when I complained that Core Democratic Values were being ignored… I was being an idiot.
Standard Disclaimer: My opinions are my own and not necessarily those of the Tuluwat Examiner. I am not on the Staff of the Tuluwat Examiner. I don’t even know who these people are. On the other hand… they don’t know who I am either. I could be standing behind them in the grocery store checkout line. I could be driving the car next to them on the freeway. I could be the guy who slurps his soup at the next table, the guy constantly blowing his nose in the next cubical or the guy staring at them on the bus.
I walk among you…