To Be a Democrat or a Republican is to Be a Tool of the Democratic-Republican Party's Corporatist Agenda

Though the idea of a progressive-libertarian alliance is openly mocked in some quarters, and greeted with extreme skepticism in others, in recent weeks and months there have been a number of successful activist coalitions with this precise contour. At FireDogLake, Jane Hamsher provides a rundown of actions that have brought together liberal-progressives and conservative-libertarians. She writes:
  • Democrat Alan Grayson worked successfully this year with Republican Ron Paul to pass legislation to audit the Federal Reserve, with 317 cosponsors as diverse as Dennis Kucinich and Michelle Bachmann.
  • On December 3, the liberal Campaign for America’s Future wrote a letter to the Senate opposing the reconfirmation of Federal Reserve chief Ben Bernanke until such an audit has been conducted. The letter was signed by James Galbraith, Robert Weisman, Chris Bowers and myself on the left, and Grover Norquist, Phillis Schlafly, and Larry Greenley on the right. Financial blogger Tyler Durden and young organizer Tiffiniy Cheng joined them.
  • Also on December 3, conservative Jim Bunning joined liberal Bernie Sanders in placing a hold on the Bernanke nomination until the Fed had been audited.
  • On December 15, CAF again sent a letter to the Senate Banking Committee, asking them to delay the vote on the Bernanke confirmation until Audit the Fed received a stand alone vote in the Senate. It was signed by Matt KIbbe of Freedomworks, John Tate of the Campaign for Liberty, and Grover Norquist on the right, and David Swanson of AfterDowiningStreet, Dean Baker and Robert Borosage on the left.
  • On December 21, a letter was written opposing the mandate in the health care bill. It was signed by Bob Fertik of, Howie Klein of DownWithTyranny, Brad Friedman of Velvet Revolution, Tim Carpenter of Progressive Democrats of America on the left and Grover Norquist, Jim Martin of 60 Plus Association, Duane Parde of the National Taxpayers Union on the right.
  • On December 23, Grover Norquist and I sent a letter to Attorney General Eric Holder calling for an investigation into Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel’s conflicts of interest before the White House could lift the cap on the commitment to them from $400 billion to $800 billion with no Inspector General in place.

Hamsher concludes:
The individuals on both sides of the political spectrum who signed these letters agree on very little, but they do share both a tremendous concern for the corporatist control of government that politicians in both parties seem hell-bent on achieving.
The corporatist agenda of the ruling parties cannot be defeated within the confines of the two-party political order because the ruling parties are the representative organs for the corporatist interests of the so-called 'political class'. To maintain that the Democratic Party is the party of the people, as so many Democrats do, is as absurd as the assertion, common among Republicans, that the GOP stands for the nation's founding principles. The first principle of the Democratic-Republican Party is the principal of political patronage; their primary concern for the people is to ensure that we line up on one side or the other of the duopoly divide to reproduce the ruling order come election day. The motivations of the dwindling number of duopolist dead-enders, the rank and file of the Democratic and Republican Parties, are almost wholly reactionary in character, with each aiming first and foremost at depriving the other of political representation and agency. Arguably, this is a condition of possibility for the implementation of the corporatists' agenda. To be a Democrat or a Republican is to be a tool of that agenda. To support Democrats or Republicans is to support everyone's continued subjugation to that agenda.


Ross Levin said...

I am really hoping that some kind of populist, anti-corporatist movement emerges from things like this - not necessarily even a third party. Bill Moyers has actually been talking about something like this (although focusing more on the progressive angle of it) for the past few months on his show, which is very interesting.

d.eris said...

Me too. I haven't been following Moyers of late, though I did just read through one of your recent posts on his series. I don't see, though, how any kind of people-centered, anti-corporatist movement could exist that wouldn't stand in opposition to the major parties, as they are the representative organs of the corporatist movement.

Ross Levin said...

I think it could exist independent of any party, major or minor. It wouldn't have to be party-centered. It could support Republicans like Ron Paul and Democrats like Dennis Kucinich and oppose any Dems and Reps that wouldn't advance the cause.