Sunday, July 11, 2004

Enter the Dragon (Here and on Line 32)

Am I alone in thinking that the great problem of the left is not political but ideological? While Ehrenreich or Nader or Chomsky can score rhetorical points against the powers that be and turn out the usual crew of protesters, what are they offering as a coherent alternative to business as usual? What the heck is democratic socialism—or whatever—in the 21st Century? Acting as if a mass outbreak of virtue and compassion will solve our problems just doesn’t cut it.

I'm not writing this to carp. I keep looking around for a confident voice on the left that has something to offer but theoretical nuance or petit bourgeois moralizing. I'm not sure I'd buy into a fresh radical point of view, but I'd sure like to hear one. Capitalism itself seems to work much better when it is challenged and checked by a credible counterforce with serious ideas. Which probably requires the emergence of a group or class of people with a vital interest in changing things and some idea of what they want.

Incidentally, I don't have a clue what the title of this bit means either.

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