Robert Reich: The Koch brothers, Karl Rove, the rabid Republican right, CEOs and Wall Street titans who want to entrench their privileges and tax advantages — all of them would like nothing better than for every progressive in America to throw in the towel.
Mark Naison: The fate of grassroots movements often depends on those who hold public office, especially those who control the power to suppress such movement through the application of armed force.
Mark Naison: If the Occupy movement’s showed us, in words and deeds, “This Is What Democracy Looks Like” those attacking the Occupations showed the world, albeit unintentionally “This Is What a Police State Looks Like.”
Mark Nathan: We need grassroots social movements of such force that it will reinvent what is possible in mainstream American politics. The Occupy movements have started such a process.
Randy Shaw: Progressive candidates develop a laundry list of public programs that energize the progressive base. But this agenda is seen as economically unrealistic by the business community and more moderate voters, who are then easily persuaded that the progressive mayoral candidate will increase their taxes to achieve their goals.
Randy Shaw: Yet Ronald Peters’ and Cindy Simon Rosenthal’s just-released book, Speaker Nancy Pelosi and the New American Politics , shows that Nancy Pelosi played a far greater role than is realized in reviving progressive politics after the disappointing 2004 defeats. Pelosi shaped the Democrats message, framed attacks on Bush and the Republican Party, maintained party unity and then delivered for progressives after becoming Speaker in 2006. Nancy Pelosi is not only the most powerful female politician in United States history, but she may also be the most effective progressive national elected official of her time.
Friday Feedback: Two nights ago some right wing acquaintances accosted me at a meeting and were chortling because they were pulling for Smith and thought he would win. I fought back saying that we need national healthcare, (medicare for all), the EFCA, and other really progressive policies to be enacted and implemented and that the rich should be taxed to pay for the changes.