Moral hypocrites

The Catholic bishops hate Biden and love Trump. What a bunch of moral hypocrites. Much more could be said. Glad I bailed on this outfit more than a half century ago.

Buffalo’s socialist mayor

From afar India Walton seems like a pretty remarkable candidate. From what I read she made a firm commitment to bring a new form of governance to the city of Buffalo, making people and their needs – not real estate interests, not police – the foremost priority.

I don’t know how much her avowed socialist pedigree figured in her campaign and election. Probably on the margins and there is nothing wrong with that. But what I find interesting is that she had no hesitation not only to embrace socialism on election night when asked if she was a socialist by a local reporter but also the dexterity to give a quick and succinct – not long winded – rendering of socialism in her reply: “All it means is that I’m putting people first. People over profits. I’m representing the working class, the poor, the forgotten.”

I doubt if I would have answered the question this way years ago, but her reply captures, for me at this point in my political life, the essence of what socialist governance should be about, albeit with this addendum – robust mass participation and decision making – deep democratization – in the affairs that matter in people’s lives should be a distinguishing feature of socialism as well. I’m sure the new mayor would agree.

Urgency of now

The Biden agenda, which represents the beginnings of a significant break from neoliberalism – an ideology and practice that dominated the country’s political, economic, and ideological life for nearly 4 decades – should command the attention and receive the full support of the expansive coalition that elected Biden last year. The main task of this coalition, therefore, isn’t to “critique” or “push” or or “fine tune” the many positive legislative initiatives of the administration or to passively observe the clash that is taking place between the administration and Congressional Democrats on the one hand and Congressional Republicans on the other. Quite the contrary. Practical engagement in support of Biden’s domestic agenda should be the watchword.

Don’t think that the far flung, right wing authoritarian coalition is passively observing what is transpiring in the nation’s capital. From the right wing evangelicals to the right wing extremist media, they understand on a very practical level that the immediate imperative is to defeat – no crush – Biden’s agenda. Everything else in their view pales in comparison. Isn’t a similar urgency and practicality necessary on our side?”

Unstinting support

I would say the sprawling coalition – and progressive and left thinking people in the first place – should give unstinting support to the Biden administration’s agenda – infrastructure, voting rights, etc. The future of the country and the outcome of the midterm elections turn on the administration’s success in enacting its agenda this year and next. And the support should be active, demonstrative and neighbor to neighbor.

Other side of the dialectic

White workers accrue skin privileges in the form of higher wages and salaries, superior health care, access to quality schools and safer neighborhoods, promising job opportunities and promotions, longer life expectancy, and more compared to their brothers and sisters of color. I’m hardly the first one to make this observation in recent years. A legion of commentators have made the same point far better than me. But what goes unmentioned in many instances is the other side of this dialectic. Which is that neither racism nor white skin privileges, which are a product of racism, are an unalloyed blessing for white workers – politically, economically, culturally or morally.

Share This