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Do Progressive Democrats have a problem with purity over pragmatism as Vic suggested in a current thread:

Moonbeam

Elite Member
Nov 24, 1999
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https://www.nytimes.com/2020/03/08/opinion/sanders-democratic-primary.html

This issue seems to me to be too important to be buried in another thread and deserves, in my opinion, more focused attention. I think it is critical that we look at the strengths or weaknesses if any of this opinion piece.

The contention of the piece is this:

"The biggest lesson is simply this: The American left doesn’t care enough about winning.

It’s an old problem, one that has long undermined left-wing movements in this country. They have often prioritized purity over victory. They wouldn’t necessarily put it these terms, but they have chosen to lose on their terms rather than win with compromise."

I would suggest as a counter to this point the youth vote, so vital to a Democratic win isn't interested in compromise, that they see compromise as the problem not the solution to anything and they won't show up to vote for a compromise candidate.

Now is that purity or is it a fact that so long as politicians compromise our Democracy will remain dead, owned by the one percent who own most of the wealth. You can call it purity if you want but I see moral outrage.

The sword of God is the empty bellies of the poor. A saying

Which candidate carries the torch of outrage?
 

[DHT]Osiris

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Dec 15, 2015
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If you define pragmatism as 'must get elected', then I guess so. I'd rather vote for a candidate more concerned with me than with winning, else I'd be a Republican.
 

ewdotson

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Oct 30, 2011
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I think there's a perfectly reasonable case to be made that the Dems don't care enough about winning, but singling *them* out for caring out purity over pragmatism? GOP politics have taken purity tests to ludicrous levels and, at least in the short term, it seems to be working out just fine for them.
 

Moonbeam

Elite Member
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I think there's a perfectly reasonable case to be made that the Dems don't care enough about winning, but singling *them* out for caring out purity over pragmatism? GOP politics have taken purity tests to ludicrous levels and, at least in the short term, it seems to be working out just fine for them.
So maybe winning and purity go hand in hand. I mean, you can't accuse the Republicans of being practical either.
 
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sandorski

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Oct 10, 1999
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I think there's a perfectly reasonable case to be made that the Dems don't care enough about winning, but singling *them* out for caring out purity over pragmatism? GOP politics have taken purity tests to ludicrous levels and, at least in the short term, it seems to be working out just fine for them.
Exactly. The Base of the Republican Party is highly motivated, because the Republicans give them what they want. The Democratic Party keeps telling their Base to shut up and accept whatever the Party does, resulting in a lack of motivation.


edit - Here is Kyle making the same point.

 
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IronWing

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Dems put accountability over public image which kills them when running against a party that has no standards but really great hair.
 
Dec 10, 2005
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Exactly. The Base of the Republican Party is highly motivated, because the Republicans give them what they want. The Democratic Party keeps telling their Base to shut up and accept whatever the Party does, resulting in a lack of motivation.


edit - Here is Kyle making the same point.

Progressives are not the only "base" of the Democratic party. It seems like Democrats just have a harder time threading the needle to appease a number of disparate groups that make up the party
 

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