“Something important is happening, and in the long run it will matter a great deal,” N.Y. Times columnist Paul Krugman posted on 6.15. “Ever since Ronald Reagan’s election in 1980, Democrats have been on the ideological defensive. Even when they won elections they seemed afraid to endorse clearly progressive positions, eager to demonstrate their centrism by supporting policies like cuts to Social Security that their base hated. But that era appears to be over. The Democratic Party is becoming more assertive about its traditional values. Why?
“Part of the answer is that Democrats, despite defeats in midterm elections, believe — rightly or wrongly — that the political wind is at their backs. Growing ethnic diversity is producing what should be a more favorable electorate; growing tolerance is turning social issues, once a source of Republican strength, into a Democratic advantage instead. Reagan was elected by a nation in which half the public still disapproved of interracial marriage; Hillary Clinton is running to lead a nation in which 60 percent support same-sex marriage.
“At the same time, Democrats seem finally to have taken on board something political scientists have been telling us for years: adopting ‘centrist’ positions in an attempt to attract swing voters is a mug’s game, because such voters don’t exist. Most supposed independents are in fact strongly aligned with one party or the other, and the handful who aren’t are mainly just confused. So you might as well take a stand for what you believe in.”
Bernie Sanders, Bernie Sanders, Bernie Sanders…a tough old buzzard who doesn’t mince words or fuck around.