Progressives Look Like Unmoored Conservatives

Rasselas

Moderator
Feb 2010
71,572
48,680
USA
This opinion piece expresses perfectly why I'm on the liberal side of the liberal vs progressive debate: https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/the-far-left-is-taking-a-page-from-its-opponents-playbook/2019/09/19/4e9344f2-db1b-11e9-a688-303693fb4b0b_story.html

Liberals seek market-based ways to ameliorate the problems created by capitalism, using research and evidence to make sure their choices are informed by reality. Current progressives (like their opposites on the conservative side) just dream big and then attempt to implement their policies based on wishes and ideology.

For most of the past decade or so, the Democratic Party has had a relative monopoly on a valuable political resource — expertise — as Republican politicians worked to discredit any independent source of accountability whose findings proved inconvenient to their agenda.

If the Congressional Budget Office said Obamacare repeal plans would leave more people uninsured, the CBO must be lying or wrong. If independent forecasters said tax cuts wouldn’t pay for themselves, they must be biased or stupid. If scientists predicted that GOP policies would worsen climate change, those scientists must somehow be trying to make a quick buck.

Trust us, Republican officials said: We know better than the experts.

By contrast, Democratic leadership — especially under Barack Obama — was pretty good about trying to achieve progressive goals in efficient, evidence-based ways. Rather than fiats, Democrats relied whenever possible on market-based mechanisms and tweaked incentives.

[....]

So here we are. A significant contingent of the 2020 candidates is promoting bigger and bolder ideas — yes — but also worse ones. Ones that actual experts clearly played little to no role in crafting, because we know what experts have to say about them.

The far left, in other words, has been taking a page from its opponents’ playbook. Experts don’t agree with us? Research, evidence and math prove inconvenient? Just trust us, they say. Our plans do everything we say they will.

Now where have we heard that before?
Why is it that when the right puts up a Nixon, the left trots out a bunch of McGoverns?
 
Mar 2012
58,641
40,150
New Hampshire
This opinion piece expresses perfectly why I'm on the liberal side of the liberal vs progressive debate: https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/the-far-left-is-taking-a-page-from-its-opponents-playbook/2019/09/19/4e9344f2-db1b-11e9-a688-303693fb4b0b_story.html

Liberals seek market-based ways to ameliorate the problems created by capitalism, using research and evidence to make sure their choices are informed by reality. Current progressives (like their opposites on the conservative side) just dream big and then attempt to implement their policies based on wishes and ideology.

Why is it that when the right puts up a Nixon, the left trots out a bunch of McGoverns?
One of my adult kids fits into that progressive camp. Fixates on what I think are "ridiculous proposals" that while on paper might sound great, but realistically would never ever pass. They dont seem to understand how government works. They feel snap my fingers and its done. Free everything. When the "normal liberals" in our family suggest otherwise they just scoff that they are corporate owned.

Its a very purist thing too, like in 2016 it was progressive or bust. Never would vote for Hillary since she was a corporatist. If you dare say that they caused Trump, the answer is "good now we will get our agenda passed sooner, because people will vote for anybody but Trump and they wont pay attention to policy." That sort of is like the tea party in 2010, people voted for them without looking at proposals and then after they won they realized they were loons.
 
May 2012
70,010
14,104
By the wall
One of my adult kids fits into that progressive camp. Fixates on what I think are "ridiculous proposals" that while on paper might sound great, but realistically would never ever pass. They dont seem to understand how government works. They feel snap my fingers and its done. Free everything. When the "normal liberals" in our family suggest otherwise they just scoff that they are corporate owned.

Its a very purist thing too, like in 2016 it was progressive or bust. Never would vote for Hillary since she was a corporatist. If you dare say that they caused Trump, the answer is "good now we will get our agenda passed sooner, because people will vote for anybody but Trump and they wont pay attention to policy." That sort of is like the tea party in 2010, people voted for them without looking at proposals and then after they won they realized they were loons.
Not wanting the government to spend money makes you looney.

Gotcha.

You are definitely a progressive.
 
May 2012
70,010
14,104
By the wall
No I am party less these days. My spouse who is more of a traditional democrat feels he might be soon as well. The fringes seem to be running the show in our social media world.
You may not belong to a party officially but you still do.

If you think being a fiscal conservative is looney you definitely fit into a group.
 
Feb 2011
17,041
6,084
Boise, ID
This opinion piece expresses perfectly why I'm on the liberal side of the liberal vs progressive debate: https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/the-far-left-is-taking-a-page-from-its-opponents-playbook/2019/09/19/4e9344f2-db1b-11e9-a688-303693fb4b0b_story.html

Liberals seek market-based ways to ameliorate the problems created by capitalism, using research and evidence to make sure their choices are informed by reality. Current progressives (like their opposites on the conservative side) just dream big and then attempt to implement their policies based on wishes and ideology.

Why is it that when the right puts up a Nixon, the left trots out a bunch of McGoverns?
My hope would be that if an alleged progressive were to win, that they would break their campaign promises for lofty, unspecified and unsupported populist progressive policies and finesse an explanation to the American people as to why the more established expertise-based policy goals your post/link refers to still accomplish the stated intent and underlying goals.

But the more fiery the rhetoric, the more of gamble that seems. I'm thinking about Warren and Sanders in particular.
 
Mar 2012
58,641
40,150
New Hampshire
My hope would be that if an alleged progressive were to win, that they would break their campaign promises for lofty, unspecified and unsupported populist progressive policies and finesse an explanation to the American people as to why the more established expertise-based policy goals your post/link refers to still accomplish the stated intent and underlying goals.

But the more fiery the rhetoric, the more of gamble that seems. I'm thinking about Warren and Sanders in particular.
Whats interesting, is even up here in New England, the home of Warren and Sanders, I hear some democrats expressing concern that they are so close to the top. They too arent sure they can win and if they do win, they fear another tea party like group rising and wiping them out in 2022. Yet they still have so much support. I guess it could be that some fear Bidens age but I am not sure their popularity. Is it all kids being polled? I just dont see a lot of people over 50 supporting them over someone like Biden, Buttigieg, Booker or Klobuchar. They all seem steadier and more stable and can appeal to a wider electorate.
 
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Jan 2012
1,037
358
SoCal
This opinion piece expresses perfectly why I'm on the liberal side of the liberal vs progressive debate: https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/the-far-left-is-taking-a-page-from-its-opponents-playbook/2019/09/19/4e9344f2-db1b-11e9-a688-303693fb4b0b_story.html

Liberals seek market-based ways to ameliorate the problems created by capitalism, using research and evidence to make sure their choices are informed by reality. Current progressives (like their opposites on the conservative side) just dream big and then attempt to implement their policies based on wishes and ideology.

Why is it that when the right puts up a Nixon, the left trots out a bunch of McGoverns?
I'm not sure I fully buy into the claims about liberals but with regard to my friends I simply say this....hit some singles before trying to hit grand slam homeruns.

If you can't fix a pothole, I'm not going to trust you with my health if I get cancer.

I keep saying this to get them to focus on current services that are not being effectively delivered when the demands are...GO BIG!

Trump is really very close to latching on this concept. He keeps hitting harder at the problems in blue cities and blue states.

I just got to spend a week in South Carolina and Georgia. If I were to grade the roads there both city streets and freeways I'd put SC at about 92-93% and Georgia at about 89-90% all while they enjoy gas that I saw in a range from $2.03-$2.21 per gallon.

California roads and freeways often feel like they were subject to bombing in a war. I'd grade most of them in the 50-60% range while we pay $3.69-$3.89 per gallon. The money is being stolen and the services are not delivered.

This is true in area after area and service after service. So liberal and progressive friends... just go hit some singles... if my kids can't use the park because it is run down or full of homeless people, you don't get my support for universal health care or a green economy. If you can't manage what you've been given, you don't get even more to handle.
 

Babba

Former Staff
Jul 2007
77,151
68,454
So. Md.
This opinion piece expresses perfectly why I'm on the liberal side of the liberal vs progressive debate: https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/the-far-left-is-taking-a-page-from-its-opponents-playbook/2019/09/19/4e9344f2-db1b-11e9-a688-303693fb4b0b_story.html

Liberals seek market-based ways to ameliorate the problems created by capitalism, using research and evidence to make sure their choices are informed by reality. Current progressives (like their opposites on the conservative side) just dream big and then attempt to implement their policies based on wishes and ideology.

Why is it that when the right puts up a Nixon, the left trots out a bunch of McGoverns?
I, personally, am a progressive but I'm too pragmatic to buy into the free everything idea because I'm a political junkie and have studied politics for years I know what's realistic and what isn't. I like a lot of what Warren proposes but some of it is simply impractical. And Sanders is hopeless. While Hillary is very moderate I thought her proposals were practical in that they could realistically have been passed. Would they have gone far enough to satisfy me, probably not, but they would have been improvements over where we are now.

I have a sister who is one of those who votes impractically. She votes for people who have impractical ideas that haven't a chance in hell of being enacted. I agree that we have to find a way to universal health care. I agree that we need to stop forcing people into crushing debt just to get an education. But no matter what the idea it has to be paid for in a realistic way. Of course she calls me a moderate corporatist. :rolleyes: