Getting Shafted for the Greater Good

Eleanor Clift reviews the Ohio 02 race and says bloggers done good. She also profiles Markos and his appearance with Joe Trippi at a "Reflections of a Blogger" forum here in D.C. (No, I did not attend. Got an invite, but didn’t go.) To his credit, Kos disavowed any leadership role, but this assessment from  him — out of Clift’s profile –  about what Dems need to do just doesn’t go down to well with me.

Moulitsas is opposed to the Iraq war but says that isn’t what drew him to Hackett. “It’s not about ideology, pro-war, antiwar, it makes no difference,” he insisted. “In the online world, we need Democrats to stand up, not be afraid of Republicans, not be afraid of the right-wing noise machine … We don’t care about ideology. We care that you stand up for the party and don’t run scared.”  He pointed out that bloggers backed Democrat Stephanie Herseth in South Dakota, who, he says, ran a Republican Lite campaign. “We’re pragmatic,” he says. If  candidates aren’t 100 percent on the environment or they’re kind of iffy on choice, progressives should overlook these differences for what Moulitsas terms “the greater good,” which is restoring the Democrats to a governing majority.

Sigh. It’s stuff like this that makes me want to fold my political tent, go home, and say to hell with all of it. Phrases like "the greater good" are usually my cue to bend over, because I’m going to be among those getting screwed for "the greater good."

It’s like the time I learned that Emily’s List was supporting an anti-gay candidate. (And yes, I think a potential vote for the FMA qualifies someone as anti-gay.) Or the time I learned about Barak Obama’s opposition to same-sex marriage. Sure, he was a better candidate than Alan Keyes, but it left me decidedly unispired about his candidacy. It also reminds me of the refrain we heard from Republicans who claim not to be anti-gay but voted for Bush in ’04: "it was for the good of the country."

Why is it that "the greater good" and "the good of the country" never quite seems to fully include me and folks like me, except somewhere out on the fringes of the "things we’ll get to later" list? It’s even more discouraging when Dems do it, because they’re usually doing it to get the support of voters who aren’t inclined to support my equality or let a candidate, once elected, move in that direction without paying a political price. If they’re succesful, it seems likely gay and lesbian issues will continue to get short shrift, as they drift just rightward enough to win more votes.

The talk that I often hear from progressive heteros on this is that my issues are just going to have to wait until a Democratic or progressive majority returns to power, and it’s likely they’ll have to wait some length of time after that happens. In other words, "not today, not tomorrow, or next year, or the year after that but somday…maybe…we hope." And maybe that’s the way things really are. Maybe that’s just a more pragmatic view. But it throws cold water on any "fire in the belly" I might have possessed.

I find myself less inclined to be much of a cheerleader for anyone who’s most persuasive argument is that the hope they’ll maybe get around to my issues someday, but for right now they’ve got to stay safe enough to accomplish the stuff that’s really important. It’s like their best arguement is "we’re not as bad as they are." Yeah, maybe. That might get my vote, if the pickings are that slim, but it won’t get much more than that.

Why should it?

(Oh, yeah. And if Kos utters one more iteration of his "I’m just just a guy with a blog" routine, I think my head will explode. I am just a guy with a blog. Kos is a "new media" mogul.)

Via TalkLeft.

About Terrance

Black. Gay. Father. Buddhist. Vegetarian. Liberal.
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2 Responses to Getting Shafted for the Greater Good

  1. ronn says:

    I totally agree with you T. I remember family members talking about the Mississippi Freedom Democrats who were told to wait, your issues will be addressed eventually. Why should I say no, my issues as a Black man must be addressed, but my issues as a Bi, Black man should wait years and years, if not for eternity?

    The Clintons and the DLC were the seeds of insidious movement and we’ll feel the repurcusions for years to come. I really don’t think I’ll have equality. Well, at least not in this country. Canada is looking better and better every day.

  2. aaron says:

    “Why is it that ‘the greater good’ and ‘the good of the country’ never quite seem to include me.” Wonderfully Langston-esque

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