The Carpetbagger Report » Blog Archive » Sunday Discussion Group: "Over the last fifty years or so, we have become a nation of primarily selfish, isolated, fearful (or bored), purpose-less, tasteless, non-passionate and uncompassionate, artless, incurious, brain-dead consumers, unaware of any past, willing to bankrupt any future, i.e., perfect targets for what (little) the GOP has to offer.
"This isn't just an abstraction. Most of us have our own house in our own cul de sac, our own (individual) car(s), our own rooms, our own TVs, our own iPods plugged into our own ears, our own cell phones, our own cubicle or office, our own computer, our own water bottle, in-home laundry, private baths/toilets, shopping for anything over our home computer. We are not required to share anything with anyone anymore and, partly from that, we have forgotten how to stand in anyone else's shoes.
"The Democratic Party used to see election as the means to realizing many worthwhile goals, most of which required the power of government to enforce or to amass the wherewithal for achieving. Many of those massive, transformative goals have already been achieved. We seem to have shrunk away from follow-through on the rest and on recognition of any new ones.
"Getting elected has become much more expensive and demanding of the time and attention of candidates and party officials. The GOP has always had a corporate goose to lay its golden eggs, and labor has basically collapsed. Still, these are just excuses. What's lacking are the kinds of GOALS the party used to proclaim, even foolishly, always with hope and a call for common sacrifice … large-scale, transformative goals for the downtrodden, for nation and the world. Without those, we have become, and will continue to be, only a poor (in several senses) version of the GOP.
"The only significant Democrats I see on the national scene at the moment are the ghosts of Kennedy/Johnson, the hopes of Barack Obama, and the reality of Cindy Sheehan."
Wow. Thank you, Ed Stephan.
A useful reminder that the ascent of the Republican Right has not been a flash in the pan, and has not been unrelated to the decline not just in the fortunes of the Democratic Party, but in its strength, as well. The advent of Bush was the culmination of some long term trends, which are not likely to be swept away in any political storm. (But, we'll see. We live in hope.)