Using Technology to Deepen Democracy, Using Democracy to Ensure Technology Benefits Us All

Friday, August 12, 2011

More, And Better, Democrats! -- A Monthly Reminder, and Tribute to Michael Harrington

From now on, at least once a month, through the struggle month to month toward what I fervently hope will be a second Obama term, through to a retaking and keeping of the House of Representatives by Democrats, through to a Democratic Senate majority without a filibuster and other rules effectively demanding a supermajority to govern at all, I will continue to re-post this quote by American democratic socialist hero Michael Harrington:
The best liberalism leads toward socialism. I’m a radical, but I want to be on the left wing of the possible.
I may be to the left even of many of the best Democrats in office, but they are the best available allies in office with whom we must struggle if we would push the United States in the direction of sustainable consensual equity-in-diversity, peer to peer. I never forget this, and I don't want my readers to forget it or deceive themselves or others about it either.


myst101 said...

Most older folks in this country--whether democrat or repug--have this visceral aversion to anything that smacks of socialism or "communism." It's because the older generations have been brainwashed by anti-communist propaganda of past decades. It's deeply ingrained in their psyche & always will be.

Once these older generations die off, I think we'll begin to get somewhere with such things as health care reform, ending regressive taxation, etc.

Dale Carrico said...

I agree with you -- but worry that climate change disruption and the global immiseration in the aftermath of postwar neoliberalism make it questionable if the world can wait long enough for the change you are talking about here. Radicals are always wholesomely impatient in the face of injustice and irrationality, but the specter of climate change refugees and overurbanized pandemic vectors is another thing altogether. Tick tock, people!

You know, I think many readers who get annoyed with my focus on the imperfect partisan and organizational tools actually at our disposal for progressive political struggle sometimes mistakenly imagine that I am less aware than they are or even unaware altogether of such looming large-scale environmental and developmental nightmares. I'm not, of course, it's just that I know the tools we have are the tools we have even if they are palpably inadequate to the problems we have.

I've already quoted Michael Harrington -- so here's another one from my archive of inspirational and heartening quotes. Donna Haraway points out that "there is always more going on than we know about." This reminds me -- and, believe me, I need regular reminding -- that we never know enough to be fully justified in feeling despair.