What often goes underappreciated is MLK’s unusual strategic depth, tactical flexibility, and sense of political realism. All of which are needed today!

Warren the “capitalist”

To say that Elizabeth Warren is a capitalist strips the word of its meaning; in a similar vein, to criticize her for her attachment to “markets” is something that many socialists could be criticized for as well.

A good read

I found this article discussing the clash of Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders insightful. Here is an excerpt:

“What has been exposed here are some of the complicated, painful, difficult dynamics that have kept women from the presidency for the country’s entire history. Among those dynamics is the chilling fact that talking in any kind of honest way about marginalization becomes a trap for the marginalized. To acknowledge the realities of running as a woman — the double standards, the higher bars, the demands for likability and relatability in a nation that mostly only relates to and likes dudes; the need to be authoritative but not hectoring; to be smart but not a know-it-all; to be cool but not fake; to be warm but not a mommy; to be maternal but not too soft; to have the contours of your life, from your breasts to your skin-care routines to your maternity leaves, treated as foreign and weird and maybe counterfeit by a political media that’s never had to take this stuff seriously before; to be honest but not actually tell the truth about any of this stuff because you’ll sound like a whiner — is a trap. You will be understood as trying to leverage the bleak unfairness of it all to your benefit: as if you are the one to enter the arena with the advantage of getting to cry “Sexism!” and not with the multiple disadvantages of … sexism.” (The Third Rail of Sexism, Rebecca Traister)

The center?

Some notions of the political center or moderates, which, if taken too seriously by too many, can have very negative consequences:

1. It’s reducible to political moderates in the Democratic Party as well as higher ups in the DNC. Not the case. It’s a mass trend with considerable resonance across the country.

2. Its politics are frozen. No, they change under the impact of economic, political, and cultural shifts. The center today isn’t a carbon copy of the center of yesterday; too much has happened, not least the crash of 2008 and the discrediting of a mode of accumulation and the associated politics that engineered it. No Democrat in the current presidential primary is saying that we should stand still or pin our hopes on unfettered markets. Each of them advocates reforms, including the expansion of the public sector and public goods. Some obviously more than others.

3. It can’t defeat Trump and the authoritarian right on its own. Actually, that is true. But neither can the left. If we could, we would have done it long ago. For now and the foreseeable future, we’re codependent, even if the relationship is at times fraught and quarrelsome.


Better … but not yet a level field

To say that Hillary won the popular vote in 2016 shouldn’t be cited to minimize or, worse still, dismiss the claim that women have a steeper climb to the corridors and chambers of political power than men due to sexism and misogyny. Similarly, to assert that more women are in Congress today than in the past isn’t an adequate rebuttal either.

Things have changed for the better in some ways in recent years, but the playing field isn’t level yet. We still live in is a gendered world. Another way to look at Hillary’s presidential run is to ask: Were it not for sexism and misogyny would she, not Trump, be in the White House?

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