Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Richard Klein Explains It All For You

Why Progressives Fail

Those active for social reform have to forget about the electoral cycle. They have to forget about what the lunatic Right is doing as much as possible and concentrate on what they themselves are in process of accomplishing. They need a compact reform agenda (yes, bullet points and not more than ten of them). They need a defined activist strategy, no matter how large the difficulties or time horizon appear. They need to build genuinely activist organizations with specific plans to achieve a core set of goals. And they have to reclaim militancy as a word, and deed, of pride. If they do those things, they will make real progress, and moreover they will be ready when the moment comes for breakthrough amongst the wider society.

There you have it. That's it in a nutshell, but please read the whole thing. I don't agree with everything Klein has to say, but on the whole, he has defined and clarified the basic problem of "progressives" -- especially on the internet -- and in the section above he provides exactly the necessary remedy (which I conveniently paraphrase):

Focus less on electoral politics (and the media maelstrom surrounding it) and more on what one is trying to accomplish. Focus less on maintaining the status quo and more on developing and working toward a vision for the future.

It's simple, it's direct. And unfortunately, it's as distant from 'progressives' today as it has been for ages.

We know what to do. Why don't we do it?

October can't come soon enough.

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