Kucinich Questions the Legitimacy of the Two-Party System

Democrat-Republican party government represents a grave threat to the people and Constitution of the United States.  If you support Democrats or Republicans, you are the problem.  Dennis Kucinich reflects on the debt negotiations between the White House and Congress:
There is a massive transfer of wealth from the American people to the hands of a few and it's going on right now as Americans' eyes are misdirected to the political theater of these histrionic debt negotiations, threats to shut down the government, willingness to make the most vulnerable Americans pay dearly for debts they did not create.  These are symptoms of a government which has lost its way. And they are a challenge to the legitimacy of the two-party system. 
Of course, the two-party system lost any legitimacy it might once have had some time ago.  The fact that individuals such as Kucinich, who recognize this simple fact at least to some extent, continue to affiliate and identify with the major parties is a direct challenge to their legitimacy as critics of the two-party state and advocates for the American people. The quote above is transcribed from the video below:

19 comments:

TiradeFaction said...

I appreciate someone in Kucinich's position has enough balls to even bring up we have a closed off two party system, but I agree, what's he still doing hanging out with the Dems? I suppose it's a money thing, after all I can't blame him in this economy. But I don't like the message he sends to progressives, that you can stick with the Democratic party, even after they sell you out the river..again and again.

David Weller, OSL said...

Another answer is currently being undertaken by the Agenda Project. They have grouped, and is organizing to a limited extent so far, a large, vast array of progressive NGO's in Washington. These non-profits include Common Cause, Public Citizen, OMB Watch, Taxpayers for Common Sense and many more.

How much synergy in progressive activism they can muster as one unit is hard for me to say right now, but the Agenda Project is just one of several large "outside the duopoly" movements charging forward as we speak. Perhaps, some grouping of these movements may prove even more strong.

DLW said...

I'm reminded of the movie Amen about the Nazi SS officer who documented the Holocaust and later died for his efforts to get the pope to tell the world about it. At one point, a "believer" friend of his refused to help him because of the fact he was a part of the SS.

Folks can work to change the system from both within and outside the two party system. Both types are probably needed to succeed.

dlw

DLW said...

I read Erica Payne's "The Practical Progressive: How to Build a 21st Century Political Movement, " It tended to try and aggregate Progressives into a big coalition with emph on those orgs who were the top in their area of interest/expertise.

The goal is to build up a liberal infrastructure, but the underlying goal is also to reestablish a Democratic party machine that would need its progressive activists/leaders to stay in power.

These are not the people I'd anticipate who'd want to handicap the rivalry between the two major parties and enable LTPs to collectively influence the sorts of policy issues arise in our country. But that doesn't mean they can't do any good...
dlw

d.eris said...

Isn't there also some progressive coalition that is building up to a protest in early October?

TiradeFaction said...

@d.eris

Isn't there always some progressive org out to "protest" something?

I forgot who exactly said that, but the only impression protests leave is on the grass ;)

TiradeFaction said...

@DLW

I think we need a mutli pronged approach, not unlike your point that we need to diversify our electoral systems.

Protests on the other hand I'm pretty skeptical of.

Leonidas said...

LOL Dennis the Menice complaining that the 2 party system is not progressive enough.

Maybe he is upset because the olive sandwich he had for lunch bit him back or something.

DLW said...

@TF
You can't be an LTP advocate and not believe in a multi-pronged approach. However, the question is, given how our current system marginalizes us, can we afford to take as much of a multi-pronged approach right now? Or should many of us put our shoulders behind the reform most likely to make a multi-pronged approach work in the future.

dlw

TiradeFaction said...

@DLW

I don't really see a dichotomy between organizing for institutional changes versus organizing for specific (or a set thereof) policy changes. Both can be worked towards I believe.

DLW said...

@TF

Here's a tennis analogy. It's like the diff between a forehand and a backhand. We inevitably tend to use one more so than the other. If our left hand (organizing for institutional change) is weak, the natural tendency is to favor the right hand(organizing for our preferred policy changes). However, this is the opposite of what it takes to improve our game, since our opponent will consistently hit the ball to us in ways that we need to use a back-hand to hit it back. But if we were to favor our left hand to get it stronger then this strategy would no longer work for them and they'd have to hit the ball more often to our right side. As such, by working on our weaker hand, we paradoxically get to work more on our stronger hand down the road.

And this is why we shd suspend our multi-pronged tendencies to focus more on strategic, as opposed to perfectionistic, reforms of the way the institutional rules are killing our democracy!

dlw

TiradeFaction said...

@DLW

I wouldn't exactly call working on preferred policy changes "perfectionist", that's a bit of a strawman I think.

But I agree working in favor of institutional reforms makes sense since said reforms could allow for easier adoption of desired policy changes. But that doesn't mean I'll abandon the former for the latter in every circumstance. I evaluate it on a case by case basis, sometimes the former is more viable, sometimes the latter is.

DLW said...

the term perfectionistic refers to those who want to make US constitutional amendments to root out the influence of $peech or end legal corporate personhood... It does not refer to policy activism and was meant to explain what I mean by "strategic".

And I could never make you do anything, nor would I want to make you do anything. I'm saying that there is such a thing as following the fucking logic and reassessing our priorities as a result and that is why I advocate for folks to major on pushing for institutional reforms.

dlw

TiradeFaction said...

@DLW

I'm not promoting (federal) constitutional amendments.

"I'm saying that there is such a thing as following the fucking logic and reassessing our priorities as a result and that is why I advocate for folks to major on pushing for institutional reforms."

Wow you're touchy!

DLW said...

@TF, I never said you were. My point was to clarify for others what I meant by strategic.

The implications of the use of Logic can be very inconvenient. Me, I get touchy because I believe too much is at stake to waste much time and energy ranting against the political duopoly, or pushing for utopic schemes or to encourage a thousand flowers bloom. Folks will do the right as they see the right, but we must come together and reason to build up shared understandings of what needs to be the priorities for making our democracy work again.

dlw

TiradeFaction said...

@DLW

I get it, you're angry people aren't paying you (or your proposals) much attention. Sucks I know, but that's life.

DLW said...

Such is the nature of internet activism where the barriers to entry are low and invite a polyglot of activists emotionally invested in their specific viewpoints.

dlw

Cox said...

"Such is the nature of internet activism where the barriers to entry are low and invite a polyglot of activists emotionally invested in their specific viewpoints."

Like you?

I've seen many posts of yours in my time reading this blog, D.eris is too kind to you, you really should spam your bullshit elsewhere.

DLW said...

Yes, Cox, like me...

dlw

 
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