Friday Feedback: Progressives, Stop Kvetching

istock_000001483014xsmall.jpgFridays the LA Progressive features a comment that was particularly noteworthy. This week we are featuring a comment submitted by highwayscribery, commenting on “Kagan in Context: Shafting Progressive Values,” by Norman Solomon. Here’s highwayscribery’s comment:

This editorial could be cut-and-pasted into a flyer from the 2000 Nader campaign.

And we know what happened there.

Stop kvetching because in 13 or 14 months progressives haven’t gotten all they wanted. What you did get was numerous, immmediate reversals of Bush environmental policy, a pledge to get out of Iraq and Afghanistan in a discernable period of time, the biggest infusion of public works money since the federal highway system was built, and a complete makeover of our nation’s image into something more wholeseome and organic on the world stage.

Take a look at your credit card bill for this month and wonder at the disclosure of information now required and consider the protections you now have from these banking pirates.

And then there is a little thing called health care reform. Or have we already forgotten? The president went to the mat on that one, and it’s going to cost him. On this issue alone he should enjoy our further indulgence.

The president has not exactly been given carte blance to govern by the Senate opposition, nor were circumstances favorable to a bundle of progressive projects.

Finally, he was not, like his predecessor, going to govern merely for the people who voted for him. That does not serve the whole country.

Learn from past mistakes. Have a memory. You may not be getting everything you want, but a presidency should run eight years and be judged en toto.

As I did a few weeks ago in this forum, I urge progressives to be thankful for what they have, things they didn’t two years ago. And I preach tolerance for conservative Democrats and the swearing off of “challenges from the left,” which carry the scent of Tea Party purity tests during a complicated election season.

We need these people to maintain governing majorities and to prove that a progressive force can still be a moderate and malleable one.


  1. timoburke says

    I’m always impressed when this site offers contrarian positions for consideration, as this one. I honor Progressives for keeping the Liberal Flame alive during so many dismal GOP years of rule, but so many seem so childish in their petulance that Obama was expected to magically “make” the Blue Dogs + Lieberman vote for a strong Public Option.

    What’s so disgusting is the only way to actually move legislation in the Progressive direction, is to attain MORE Liberal Dems in this Nov’s elections — but with so many Liberal and Progressives pouting and burying themselves in State and Local issues, the very success this Nov which would give us more of what we want, seems unlikely unless everyone wakes up out of their dream world and gets a move on.

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