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Out of bondage

By Owen Paine on Friday May 27, 2011 01:41 PM

"Working people need a party of their own", or so sez a spirited commenter at AFL-America's blog.

While reading comments over there recently, under brother Trumka's dire public threat to end all reflexive union sacrificing of "dues sweat and tears" at the altar of the Demo-party.. -- the shameless half-century of piecard Stockholm syndrome -- sure enough, I ran into a hailstorm of like chitter. In summary: "We need to form a third party...NOW!"

What a rallying cry that is, boys and girls. First among sequels to be wished into existence to sublate the Judas goat Democrat racketeers. Specifically, we need a union propelled labor party.

With this as topic, do I hear the ritual SMBIVA "Ho hum"? But honestly, mates aren't we all tempted by thirdness? My favorite: some poor benighted soul even naively suggests we look to perfidious Albion for a model -- yes, the party of Blair and Brown! We even get the Machiavel's dream: "...Labor should infiltrate both parties and take up seats until Labor is strong enough to build its own polical party." I don't buy it. Why bother building a toy class party -- in fact, why bother to build a party of electoral success of any kind? Why waste the time and treasure when you can run just about anyone you want in the general election as an Indy?

"Why else -- to build something lasting, something permanent, Paine!"

Really? Permanent? Like what -- the populists... the Debs socialists... the Greeeeeeeeen party?

Why not simply jam into the democrat big-tent primary scrum? That oughta both get your feet wet and splash some mud on the face of professional Democracy.

Now before Father Smiff, who hates a primary even worse than a Whig, sinks his fangs into my fetlock, I hasten to add that you enter the primary bearing a solemn "sore loser" pledge to fight on, a la Joe the Lieberskin, if the votin' majority of the local party base, in an act of unspeakable self-disgrace refuses to back the one true pwog candidate -- namely, you.

We have, till further notice a twofer ballot box system, in most places, and so far as I can see, that suffices as a basic electoral structure, for whatever electoral politics are worth -- that is, so long as outsiders fail to worship insiders and troublesome resolutes continue to pee through the tent flap as early and often as possible.

Comments (4)


We also have a finite life. So why not just commit suicide now, if we're limited by mortality and death is eventual?


Al Schumann:

Of course we all know the history of jamming into the scrum, and of third parties too, for that matter. Owen, your take on premature party-building and the farce of electoral contests remains solid, as far as I'm concerned. There's not much to be said for pursuing either of them—until the activity involved is the tip of an iceberg.


Al! You have been much missed.

Al Schumann:

I've been in the deepest, darkest heart of America, bringing the refusenik gospel to the poor benighted natives.

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