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What Opposition Party?
by Dave Lindorff
Email: dlindorff (nospam) yahoo.com
29 Sep 2005
Modified: 09:14:20 AM
The leading lights of the Democratic Party are hiding in the shadows on virtually every important issue, avoiding taking progressive stands on anything of consequence. Handed every conceivable opening by a corrupt and incompetent ruling party, they are refusing to offer an alternative. Roosevelt must be rolling in his grave.
Iraq War going to hell, with U.S casualties approaching 2000 dead and 25,000 wounded, at a cost of $200 billion and rising.
Poverty in America on the rise in a period of supposed economic growth.
Republican Party a cesspool of corruption.
White House being investigated for outing undercover CIA agent.
Abortion rights under serious threat and civil liberties on the chopping block, with the Supreme Court being packed with right-wing judges.
New Orleans, just drying out from disastrous flood, being raped by White House-linked corporate pirates and scam artists.
Budget deficit topping half trillion dollars.
Gas and heating oil crisis looming, while oil companies reap record profits.
Bush poll numbers hit historic low as even some Republicans abandon him as an incompetent.
Oh yeah—all this and global warming and the end of human life as we know it.
Man, if you were an opposition politician looking to make a run for Congress next years, or for president in 2008, this would be a magical time.
But where’s the opposition?
The media tell us that the leading candidates for the Democratic nomination for president in 2008 are Hillary Clinton, Joe Biden, Bill Richardson and maybe John Kerry.
What all these people have in common is their deafening silence on all the issues of importance facing Americans and America.
Not one dared show her or his face at the record demonstration against the Iraq War held in front of the White House last weekend.
None has spoken out on the Republican corruption scandals.
None has called for a public program to hire all the displaced of New Orleans to put them to work rebuilding the destroyed city. Instead, they are allowing Bush and the Republican Congress, with the acquiescence of Louisiana’s corrupt local Democratic Party, to bring in speculators and the same profiteers who have been sucking up the reconstruction money in Iraq.
None has offered a plan to attack the U.S. deficit and the hollowing out of the American economy.
None of these “leading opposition candidates” has even taken any kind of strong stand on global warming—for example calling for a tax surcharge on low-mileage cars and trucks and strict limits on carbon emissions by power plants plus a crash program to develop alternative energy sources.
The truth is that when it comes to the Democratic Party, the purported opposition party, there is no there there. It no longer exists.
You’d think the sorry experience of the last two presidential campaigns, where two Democratic candidates, Al Gore and John Kerry, ran spineless, uninspired campaigns that managed to avoid taking a progressive stand on any critical issue of the day, and predictably went down to defeat, dragging Democrats in Congress down with them, would have been a lesson: political cowardice and wedge issue pandering has no future.
Yet here we are five years into the Bush presidency, with Republicans imploding on their own greed and ineptness, and the Democrats are still afraid of their shadows.
Unless someone comes forward soon with an inspired progressive agenda, it’s probably time to let the Democratic Party go the way of the Whigs.
Simply letting the Republicans flounder will not win a single election, much less the race for the White House.
It used to be said that pulling the lever for a third party candidate was wasting your vote. These days, voting for a Democrat is wasting a vote.
For other stories by Lindorff, please go (at no charge) to: www.thiscantbehappening.net