Skip to main content

Perhaps the PDA should grow some backbone itself

The Progressive Democrats of America (PDA) has quite a following within the peace movement. However, I am critical of their hostility to supporting progressive anti-war third-party candidates in the general election cycle.

Here is my recent letter to them:

I believe Kevin has this right. PDA's unwillingness to support independent or third party anti-war candidates against a more corporate/"middle-of-the-road" Democrat in the general election in many ways effectively makes them a tool of the status quo. I admire many involved with PDA, but I think they need to realize the political terrain underneath them is shifting.

I asked a couple of them two weeks ago if they would endorse the candidacy of a friend of mine who is vehemently anti-war and calling for Bush's impeachment. They replied no, as this person is running a a Republican. Never mind that she's running as a Republican in an open primary against the incredibly corrupt Roy Blunt. So there you have it. Should we continue to pursue the path of partisanship in our loathing of Bush, or should the political discourse widen and become more inclusive when the anti-war movement goes to the polls?

I could make the argument that party labels mean less and less these days. You have "progressive" Kwesi Mfume saying that it will probably be OK to bomb Iran, you still have many Dems supporting the Patriot Act and continually funding the war with billions and billions and billions of taxpayer dollars. The Democrats are tightly married to corporations. The Democrats are often scared of their own shadow, despite the growing support for the anti-war movement. However, they are great at giving tepid lip service and going on about how Bush bungled the whole affair.

The Democrats also tend to take minorities and gays for granted. But how many of them really support gay marriage? How many of them are really trying to stop gentrification? Look at the orgies between the elected Democrats and developers right here in D.C.!

The PDA has consistently called on their party leadership to grow some backbone, and it hasn't -- just more meaningless lip service. So maybe PDA now needs to do the most courageous thing itself and leave the party. Again, I do not mean to disrespect people who have worked very hard on this cause, I simply want to intensify this important discussion.

Comments

Anonymous said…
backbone? You mean cluelessness about the real political strategy?

What has any third party movement done? Here is a response from one PDA activist to this letter that was found on the blogs: http://spidel.net/blog/?p=638
PeteinDC said…
Third parties are here to stay. They have helped shape and direct political discourse several times during the history of this nation.

I am proud to be Green and will remain a Green. But I politely responded on that blog. It was a well crafted essay, but it didn't get at the heart of why millions of progressives choose not to vote in general elections.

Believe me, I won't be surprised if the Democrats still don't regain some control via the mid-term elections.

I am simply asking progressives to read the 10 key values of the Green Party. Change does not happen over night. But we are foolish if we really think the PDA will reshape the corporatist DNC.

Popular posts from this blog

Steve Mihalis, a great friend and man of peace

May we all take up the cause as Steve did, and perhaps more importantly in the *manner* that he did.

I spoke with Steve by phone a week before he passed. He was in a whole lot of pain and the drugs were not helping. I forced back tears, as I was talking with him. The conversation was too brief, as was the time I knew this great guy. As I ended the conversation, I said "Steve, you know what? There's a whole lot of us in D.C. who love you." He just responded that he loved all of us, as well.

I had been arrested with Steve a handful of times, as we resisted the empire's wars and its unjust detaining and mistreatment fellow human beings. He always arrived in DC with a smile and open arms for a hug and a kind word, or two, or three.

Steve never had an unkind word for anyone. He became very involved with the National Campaign for Nonviolent Resistance over the last four years, and that's how I got to know him better.He always provided this wonderful source of positive ene…

A Proposal for We The People to Institute Positive Change

Hello sisters and brothers, subjects of the United States Empire, it has become clear the elected representatives on Capitol Hill no longer truly represent us and our best interests, but rather are serving their elite major campaign contributors. They serve the interests of the extreme rich and large corporations, certainly not the average American worker, student, or retired individual.

In order to improve our government, we, a collective of dedicated social justice activists, propose three demands to those who have power to legislate within the Federal Government. We list those demands here, and will then discuss how to make sure they pass into the law of the land:

1) Universal single payer health care, something that nearly all other developed nations of the world already possess for their citizens. We, as human beings, have a right to good health and to never be financially crippled in this pursuit of our own well-being. We demand that Congress pass House Resolution 676 and a Sen…

Civil resistance intensifies to evil policies so far this year

In honor of Independence Day, I was originally going to write a piece talking about the loss of our republic to the military-corporate empire we live in now, but I thought I would just save myself the additional frustration and post Max from Baltimore's report on civil resistance actions and trials thus far this year! Thanks Max...

Thanks to all of you who were able to risk arrest or to support such protests against the Iraq War. Let us continue to take the risks of peace. This list of appeals, arrests and legal cases is not all-inclusive. Please send additions, corrections and updates to mobuszewski at verizon.net. Included are arrests and pending cases in 2008.

JULY

20—[WDC] The government was to file a brief in response to the one filed on Dec. 29, 2007 by Mark Goldstone on behalf of Beth Adams, Ellen Barfield, Michelle Grise, Sherrill Hogen, Kathryn McClanen, Joan Nicholson, Max Obuszewski & Eve Tetaz with the District of Columbia Court of Appeals. They are appealing co…