What’s in the Label “No Labels” for America?

13 12 2010

Americans want political leaders to reach across the political aisle to get things done. Forty-seven percent said it is more important to compromise to get things done than to stick to their beliefs . . .
In several states the number of people registered as independents tops those affiliated with either political party. . .

No question that moving forward beyond pitched partisan warfare would be a good thing:

We have a dangerous dearth of credibility in the United States these days, and when no one has the confidence of a majority of Americans, there is fertile ground for con artists and demagogues.
And now, arguably the most serious challenge facing our country is figuring out how to have those discussions.

Yes, many scholarly calls to rise above partisan poisoning of the civic well have come to naught, and yes, JJ herself loved and lost with Sam Waterston’s post-partisan Unity08:

Who really believes either political aristocracy would run the government well for OUR benefit, rather than their own, then? If government runs the mechanisms that help US run IT — from voting machinery to schooling machinery — who’s the servant, who’s getting served, and who’s just getting served UP?

And yes, she has a great cautionary tale to tell, remind her later, about the recent unpleasantness between rival parties that destroyed the self-governing union of Real-Bearded Santas!

Nevertheless she won’t AUTOMATICALLY assume this new similar-sounding effort launching today will similarly fail:


No Labels.
Not Left. Not Right. Forward.
Put the Labels Aside.
Do What’s Best for America.

But Evan Bayh as its poster boy, seriously? — smiling down from his family’s health care fortune amassed at the expense of no-label Americans with neither fortune nor health care?

That brand of Corporatism (private profit at public expense) is “nonpartisan” only because it means to be the unilateral force running the country and controlling/exploiting everything and everyone. America can’t withstand much more movement toward THAT.

So come to think of it, No Labels might have a better chance of “success” than earlier nonpartisan efforts because behind the similar rhetoric, its underlying reality looks less idealistic, more calculated, plainly self-interested in rich-guy haymaking by any other or no name.

Removing all partisan bias may not be possible but is this really even trying? Just off the top of my head for example, “look for the union label” partisans literally have everything to lose from No Label! Billionaire businessfolk moving on overseas to evade any American obligations now that our natural and human resources have been strip-mined, not so much.

Meanwhile openly partisan groups like American Crossroads (GOP) and American Bridges (Dems) aren’t taking us forward either — not unless you count the first part of a head-on collision as technically racing forward for both sides.

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3 responses

13 12 2010
Nance Confer

“. . .plainly self-interested in rich-guy haymaking by any other or no name. ”

And this is news because? They thought of a new name? These people have no shame.

13 12 2010
JJ

It’s not just them, apparently. It’s human nature that in reality, sooner or later no matter our rhetoric, between the bad apples and the dubious barrels, our organizations and institutions and governments get pickled. Or something like that. Those Santas for instance — a story (appropriately) told on “This AMERICAN Life”:

Act Three. Santa Fight Club.
A tale of two Santas. There’s Tim Conaghan, a full-time professional Santa with a big belly and a real flowing white beard. And there’s Santa Nick—he too has a belly and real white beard.

But the story of Santa Tim and Santa Nick is not like most uplifting Christmas parables. Instead, it’s about two men, very much alike, who came to lead rival factions in a bitter Santa civil war, and came themselves to be arch enemies. Josh Bearman reports on the political schism that’s overtaken the Amalgamated Order of Real Bearded Santas. (27 minutes)

Song: “Get Behind Me Santa!”, Sufjan Stevens

14 12 2010
JJ

Speaking of labels, our Belgium-based friend Beta just changed the name of her homeschooling blog with a new post explaining why: Secular Family, Catholic School

Being a secular family in a catholic school has its own stories to tell.

. . .As always, life is in flux. . .

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