2008 Election Manifesto: Voting Your Conscience isn't Wasting Your Vote, Part II

(Editor's Note: This is the second part of a three-part series. To read the first part in the series, please go here. To read the final part in the series, please go here.)

by Jeff Siegel

Guess who wrote this: "We believe that economic growth generated in the private sector is the prerequisite for opportunity, and that government's role is to promote growth and to equip Americans with the tools they need to prosper in the New Economy." That would be the Democratic Leadership Council (DLC). Hardly inspiring progressive oratory, is it? I love the bit about the role of government, which sounds like a high school guidance counselor.

Contrast it with this, from a fellow who knew a thing or two about progressivism: "There are in the body politic, economic and social, many and grave evils, and there is urgent necessity for the sternest war upon them. There should be relentless exposure of and attack upon every evil man, whether politician or business man, every evil practice, whether in politics, business, or social life." That would be the 26th president of the United States, the Republican Theodore Roosevelt. Not very Obama-like, is it? But what did TR know? All that approach did was get him elected in 1904 with 56 1/2 percent of the vote, and 27 percent of the vote in 1912, when he ran as an independent and finished second. Bill Clinton, the darling of the DLC, never passed 50 percent in either of his victories.

And Clinton wouldn't have made it either time if progressives like me hadn't held their noses and voted for him. Which I won't do again. Ever. I'll vote for Ralph Nader. I'll vote for the Libertarians, who at least want out of Iraq. But I won't participate in this charade, where Democrats say it's OK to bail out investment bankers but tough luck for working people who are belly up on their mortgages. And if anyone asks me why I'm wasting my vote, I have a better question: Why are they wasting theirs?

(To read this series from the beginning, please go here. To read the next part in the series, please go here.)

(Political graphic by El Serracho!; you can see more of his graphics at the blog Guys from Area 51. This graphic is made available through a Creative Commons License.)

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