Partinost at work

Netroots Nation recently gave Barack Obama’s Presidency a ‘thumbs up’, according to Roll Call and Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research:

Despite their grousing about the administration during the Netroots Nation conference, liberal activists and bloggers are relatively happy with President Barack Obama’s performance.

A straw poll conducted by Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research showed that 80 percent either approve or strongly approve of the president more than a year before voters head to the polls to decide whether he deserves a second term. The results broke down to 27 percent strongly approving of Obama and 53 percent approving “somewhat.” Thirteen percent said they “somewhat disapprove,” and 7 percent strongly disapprove of the president.

The poll of 519 people was conducted via iPad in the Minneapolis Convention Center on Thursday, Friday and Saturday.

We should give thanks to Apple for giving the world the iPad! I wonder, though, what the Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research poll would have revealed had the poll included participants using different gear. An inclusive poll might have exposed the frustration present at the convention, frustration that some reporters noticed and wrote about (see this, this, this, this, etc.)? Perhaps. It also might have shown a common awareness among the activists that the situation of the moderate left is now untenable. As one_outer pointed out:

The unofficial theme of this conference was of a movement at a crossroads, with a choice between our most deeply cherished principles and our understandable concern in accidentally empowering an insane and openly fascist Republican Party over a corrupt, ideologically conservative, and fully propagandized Democratic Party.

Same as it ever was, same as it ever was….

It is typical for the left in the United States to feel compelled to vote for the “lesser evil” candidate, which, for the left, is always a Democrat, even though participating in the Democratic Party in some way means working within and for the political machine. To make myself clear on this point I must point out that this political machine necessarily includes the Republican Party as a constitutive element. The two parties support each other. Moreover, the goals of this machine appear in the work of its apparatus. As one_outer noticed: “These professional political types are well on their way to full commodification of progressive politics for their own gain, as the elite gatekeepers of progressive votes, volunteer hours, and wallets.” They are brokers, and they trade in money, votes and flesh. They are not populists. Nor are they interested in promoting political accountability. They are interested in machine politics, such as the politics practiced by the professional political types found at Netroots Nation. This politics is intrinsically bipartisan because it must be bipartisan if it is to work at all, according to Walter Karp and Robert Lafollette (Karp, 1993, p. 31). And a fully commodified progressive politics would affirm machine politics as a matter of course. When the Golden Rule of politics is operative, those who have the gold make the rules. The holders and hoarders of this gold will not often be found at places like Netroots Nation.

For the left in general, the path is and has long been clear: It must abandon the Democratic Party if it wants to accomplish anything worth having.

This article can also be found at Fire Dog Lake

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