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Archive for the ‘Democratic Party’ Category

THE SECOND STEP: FORGET THE DEMOCRATIC PARTY

Posted by G.A. Matiasz on November 13, 2016

My alter-ego, “Lefty” Hooligan, would no doubt say “Fuck the Democratic Party!” I’m not so belligerent because I’m not at all sure whether the Democratic Party should be abolished, ignored, embraced, reformed, or rebuilt from the bottom up. Nor am I as certain as my ultraleft counterpart that bourgeois political parties or even revolutionary parties have no role to play in bringing about social change, let alone social revolution. The whole issue of electoral politics is highly problematic from a number of perspectives, so I think it best to put aside the Democratic Party in discussing what is to be done in the wake of Trump’s win and the Republican Party’s victories.

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What I am certain about is that an active and engaged mass social base is needed in order to take the next step, whether that is forming a progressive, labor or revolutionary party, building an extra-parliamentary opposition, or attempting radical reforms or even social revolution. The two necessary components to an effective, vibrant mass social base are lively autonomous social movements and independent street politics based on direct action. And crucial to any mass social base with agency in my estimation will be an organized and organizing working class committed to direct action in the streets. Combine these two components, and true social power begins. I can endlessly debate the need for extra-parliamentary politics; what is absolutely necessary are broad, non-parliamentary social movements in the streets.

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Posted in black bloc, capitalism, Democratic Party, direct action, labor unions, life | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Hey Kids! Here’s Presidential Candidate and Old Jewish Man Bernie Sanders’ 1987 Folk Album!

Posted by G.A. Matiasz on September 3, 2015

Heeb Magazine broke this story, and it’s reprinted here:

Hey Kids! Here’s Presidential Candidate and Old Jewish Man Bernie Sanders’ 1987 Folk Album!
Yo Semite August 30, 2015

Bernie Sanders is having a pretty great summer. The crotchety senator from Vermont is not only riding a wave of popularity unmatched by anything in his career thusfar, but according to recent polls, his presidential campaign is, amazingly, improbably, starting to close within striking distance of Democratic dauphin, Hilary Clinton, herself. While some might attribute Sanders’ newfound political relevance to his thoughtful, nuanced, policy positions, or his grassroots efforts to appeal to a wide, untapped liberal base. I have another theory.

America loves a folk musician.

Oh, you didn’t know? Bernie Sanders once released a full album of American folk standards. Yup. The (admittedly, unlikely) next president of the United States is a bona fide folker.

Sanders’ album, “We Shall Overcome” was release in 1987, while Bernie was still mayor of Burlington, VT. According to Seven Days, a Vermont-based independent news site:

Todd Lockwood, a Burlington-based author/photographer/musician, remembers sipping coffee at Leunig’s Bistro one morning in 1987 when he came up with the idea of recording then-mayor Sanders at his White Crow Audio studios. (Phish recorded early albums there.)

“I’m not sure where it came from,” Lockwood said of his brainstorm. “I thought, ‘You know, there’s an idea.’”

On a whim, he called the mayor’s office — he didn’t know Sanders — and left a message with a secretary. Before long, he got a call back — Sanders wanted a meeting.

“I was surprised he said, ‘Yes,’” Lockwood said. “When I first went to his office he said, ‘I have to admit to you this appeals to my ego.’’’

Sanders gave Lockwood a list of songs, mostly from Woody Guthrie and Pete Seeger, he would be willing to record.

How does it sound? Judge for yourself:

Originally, Sanders had planned to sing each song himself, but that went right out the window after he actually, well, started to sing. Mel Torme, he ain’t. Instead, his singing voice allegedly ended up sounding exactly as you’d probably expect coming from a crotchety Jewish member of the Vermont Progressive Party – Not, uh…not so great.

Still, if you’re interested/brave enough, the full album is available for purchase on amazon.

Posted in Democratic Party, democratic socialism, life, music, politics | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

I call bullshit!

Posted by G.A. Matiasz on October 16, 2013

The Beltway budget melodrama rolls on to its predictable and dreary end, with both sides now split over increasingly small differences. None of this is worth a partial government shutdown, much less the risk of a debt default, and both sides are looking like losers. Let’s get it over with.

“The Debt Denouement,” Wall Street Journal, 10-15-13

BULLSHIT!

I call mutherfucking bullshit!

This isn’t a matter of “everybody’s at fault here, let’s dole the blame out equally and move on.” One side, and one particularly tiny faction of one minority party is disproportionately at fault here. The fucking Tea Party loonies of the loser Republican Party, which capitulated to them, is to blame here. I’m no fan of the sad sack Democratic Party, which has its fair share of nutjobs. But the idiocy here cannot be evenly apportioned.

My wife watches the fictional TV drama “Hostages.” It’s a show about a shadowy cadre of heavily armed quasi-government spooks who attempt to force a famous surgeon to assassinate the president of the United States by proxy by taking her and her whole family hostage. Well, it turns out that the son is dealing pot, the daughter is having sex with a “bad boy” boyfriend, the husband is having an affair, yada, yada, yada. Everybody in the family has their dirty little secrets, and they’re all morally culpable to a degree. But they’re being held hostage, damnit! There’s no equivalency between the sordid lives of the family members who are being held hostage, and their thuggish, murderous hostage takers!

I’m making a no-holds-barred analogy to US politics here and now.

WANTED FOR CRIMINAL ACTIVITY: HOSTAGE TAKERS!
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Posted in "Hostages", debt ceiling limit, Democratic Party, Democrats & Republicans, Federal Government, Federal government shutdown, government sequestration, hostage taking, John Boehner, politics, Republican Party, Tea Party | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »