Bringing Light to a World in Darkness

There is no political movement whose goals are more admirable, necessary, or virtuous than that of the Progressives. We fight the forces of war, ignorance, and greed with all of our hearts; many of us even understand that the survival of civilization, and perhaps humanity itself, may rest upon our shoulders during the next 100 years. And for better or worse, it will be up to us: we who, against all odds, are willing to fight for a better world. Unlike the generations before us, we will not allow ourselves to be content in handing our children a world shaped by ignorance and collective irresponsibility. Most every progressive understands this, on one level or another -- though most fail to remind each other of it often enough.

The life of a progressive is mostly one of suffering. The reason being that our minds are cursed with an unrelenting conflict between outer realities and our own inner ideals. Everyday, we endure wars between our limitless imaginations ,and our knowledge and acceptance of a tragedy which surrounds all of us; some call it "the real world". It is a ghastly affliction. But it happens to be who we are.
Most of us have tried, at one time or another, to run from our powerful spirits and minds. We've tried alcohol, drugs, sex, and a few have even resorted to suicide. Tragically, it's no suprise that such a dark world compells the brightest of its spirits to surrender and willingly extinguish their flames.

A lot has been said about bloggers, and the blogosphere; some call it a fad, others call it a revolution -- I think both positions start from the wrong place. A blogger is nothing more than a person who writes their thoughts for others to read. Period. To speak of bloggers or blogs as a whole is as foolish as speaking of books and authors as a whole.

A Call To Arms

Magnificent isn’t it? Over to the bottom left we have a blogroll with a picture of armed ruffians sitting atop a dead elephant. At this point in time, our less than two week old alliance finds itself at cross roads. Our first option, is to do what all alliances have traditionally done: watch the roll grow – like a plant – until it becomes a massive bean stock of discombobulated links. Give it a little time, and we’ll probably grow tired of it wasting the space it requires on our template. The alliances members will slowly begin to erase their blogrolls out of complete lack of interest. Eventually, the Progressive blog Alliance -- like the Liberal coalition, and its even lamer liberal webring compatriots – will wither into yet another wasteland that falls under our philosophy's name.

Another option is to only admit bloggers that meet certain standards of “reputation”, who are “sufficiently progressive”. I violently oppose that option. For one, such a system unnecessarily encourages factions and disagreements among us. Furthermore, as we our a politically charged outfit, we’d be required to agree on the meaning of political terminology. And how is that supposed to happen? Am I supposed to send out an e-mail asking you to anonymously answer the question: “what is a progressive”? If I did, most of you would probably just wonder what I hoped to gain from assigning the alliance an essay question.

Remember, we are progressives and leftists! We must remain forward thinking, open-minded, and – above all – willing to fight in the interests of the underdogs. It often amazes me that someone can feel so strongly about creating a just, equal, and free society, yet act as stingy as a freakin’ hard-core libertarian when it comes to giving someone a link. We must differentiate ourselves from the snobby attitudes of the liberal coalition (who, I suppose deamed me unfit to join their ranks), and alliance of free blogs. Both of those organizations maintain a perpetual attitude of, “this blogger isn’t established enough”, or “what sort of link/traffic benefits can I expect by allowing them to join the alliance?”

I on the otherhand, believe there is a greater reward in giving someone who shares our world view a helping hand as they climb up the slippery and overcrowded ladder of the blogosphere. I would gain more satisfaction from that, than winning additional rounds of blogosphere link-realpolitik . I say let members join with 0 links from 0 sources. Perhaps our support might encourage them! Perhaps they might have something to say if they thought people were listening. If you doubt my optimism, take a look at the first post that you ever wrote. Furthermore, think of the long term benefits of presenting ourselves in such stark contrast to the rest of the sphere? Remember, our philosophy requires our actions to be consistant with our words.

So I’ve gone ahead and made a few decisions.

The Error of the Electoral Collegiophiles

George F. Will recently asserted that the electoral college, like the constitution, "was not devised by, and should not be revised by, simple-minded majoritarians." Indeed, the electoral college was a brilliant 18th century solution to clusters of 18th century problems.There were three good reasons that the constitutional convention rejected the idea of direct elections for the presidency. First off, there was no method of communication that could sufficiently educate voters about presidential candidates. Secondly, our framers worried that the masses had neither the education, nor the refinement required to make prudent decisions. Thirdly, the implementation of national elections would have upset the balance of power among states. For example, direct presidential elections would cause the south to lose most of its political power. Under the electoral college, slaves couldn't vote, but could be still counted as 3/5 man when deciding the number of Representatives and electors for states.

Delusions of War

The very idea of a "just war" strikes me as oxymoronic. I'll conceed that wars are occassionaly fought out of absolute necessity. However, I remain unconvinced that necessity equals justice. The truth is: If you truly believe that all people are born equal, than you can never refer to a war as "just". Amongst the American public, I've identified roughly three different view points on war. These three views are not intended to be a label to pidgeon hole to others.

When Death is Just Another Re-run

It would seem that beheading videos have become passe. Though I've seen a few obligatory links to the recent videos; they've caused none of the euphoric excitement of four months ago. These days, a video of some poor man getting his head chopped off is received with a yawn. And why shouldn't it be? We all know their script by now:There will be about four guys in cheap black ninja costumes standing in front of a flag. One of them will spend about 6 min angrily yelling about something in another language. Often, his speech will be long winded enough to require him to read it from typed pages. Then, he'll yell something loudly in another language, and cut off kidnapped victim's head.

Rocking the Idiot Vote

Okay, its true: Nadar does speak out against
issues that most Democrats won't touch. His campaign speeches criticize
NAFTA, WTO, deregulation of the airwaves, and corporate welfare. And
yes -- he thinks we should have more than two parties. So, to recap:
Nadar talks and has opinions. He is also a shameless egoist who
exploits the idealism of young leftists, and old idiots.

Nader
claims that its "the Democrat's fault" if they cannot gain support from
the left-wing's most naive and stupid voters. Nadar says that Kerry
should "end the war in Iraq"," create a system of universal health
care", and enforce a "living wage" (which he left undefined). Indeed we
would all like to see Nader's dreams bloom into a world without war,
pollution, or poverty. Unfortunatly, those dreams are divorced from
reality.

Future Strategies for Progressives

To begin, all progressive minded individuals need to eradicate their faith in revolution, or as it is commonly called in the parlance of our times, "waking people up". Every time you think people are going to magically "wake up", follow this proceedure:
Go to the grocery store and look at the masses of dead-eyed, sleepwalkers contently waddling down the aisles. Those are your voters. Repeat the Following Mantra:Your political message is for them, not you.Your only Job is to turn your message into actual votes.If you think elections are won with reason, truth, or moralityThan dear lord my friend, politics is not for you.
The GOP and Karl Rove understand , and take advantage of this fact. As a result, those dolts keep winning elections. It's a sad fact that Republicans are yet to lose on account of overestimating the stupidity of voters.Notes on Language:Here's a few hints on crafting messages: don't bring up controversial social issues unless necessary. We should take back the language! Humor me, and contemplate the differences in your responses to these two sentences:
"It's a woman's right to have an abortion! We must stop these fundamentalists fromcreating their theological fascist regime!"

The Answer to One of Life's Great Mysteries: Why Everything On TV Sucks

For the sake of getting it out of the way, I will sum up my impression of the conventions in one sardonic paragraph:

If a high school pep rally and an infomercial had a baby, than it would probably look like the conventions. Beyond that, file any pundit or blogger that classified either convention as a solid "success" or "failure" under "T", for "transparent and partisan quack." Finally, its clear that we must hunt down all voters who were naive and gullible enough to be swayed by either of the conventions. When found, we should pay those feeble minded $1000 dollars to never vote again. Call me extreme, but I consider those voters to be the greatest threat to our great Republic. Remarkably, that's all I have to say about the conventions.

You see, whenever I analyze TV-age politics, I do this freakish thing called "thinking". Its a habit that worries me, as some experts believe that thinking leads to acne and growing hair on your hands. However, I nevertheless feel compelled to show the world the results of my dirty habit.

First off, I don't trust anything that a politician puts into a sound-bite. I don't care if they are Democrats, Republicans, or from our garden variety pack of third parties. I find all political "messages" and "themes" to be as inspiring and honest as the sales pitch of a door-to-door-$2000 -vacuum cleaner-salesman. Bush claims that he'll win the war on terror. Kerry claims he'll insure every American. Yet, until one of them appoints Merlin the magic wizard as their chief of staff, I'll go ahead and consider their promises to be as solid as wind.

Our Saving Pricniples

"Nothing of Importance This Day"- Dairy of King George III on July 4th 1776

America's independence was actually declared by the Continental Congress on July 2, 1776. However, Thomas Jefferson's document The Declaration of Independence was adopted on the July 4. In otherwords, this was a case where a document has overshadowed an actual event. By publishing those words, our founding fathers had effectively signed their own death warrants. Jefferson wrote that he intended the document to be a harmonize of the sentiments of the day. The Declaration was to be "an expression of the American mind," which was to placed "before mankind the common sense of the subject, in terms so plain and firm as to command their assent." Our founding fathers showed the sort of courage which bears repeating 228 years later. On the eve of Independence Day, John Adams wrote to his wife, "I am well aware of the toil, and blood, and treasure, that it will cost us to maintain this declaration, and support and defend these states. Yet, through all the gloom, I can see the rays of light and glory; I can see that the end is more than worth all the means, and that posterity will triumph." Upon signing the document, John Hancock joked, "There! His Majesty can now read my name without glasses. And he can double the reward on my head!" After signing the document, Ben Franklin reminded his friends, "We must all hang together, or assuredly we shall all hang separately."The abolitionist Fredick Douglass called the declaration our "saving principles". He reminds us today "to be true to them on all occasions, in all places, against all foes, and at whatever cost." Lincoln's words might chime our mystic chords of memory:

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