Drudge Retort: The Other Side of the News
Saturday, November 18, 2017

Last week more than a dozen socialists won office around the country after taking inspiration from the 76-year-old Vermont firebrand.

Democrats won off-year elections across the country last week for many reasons, but let's pause for a second and give Bernie Sanders some credit. Among the historic victories Democrats earned in Virginia, New Jersey, and elsewhere were a handful of out-and-proud actual socialists who won local office. It could be a precursor to an upsurge in leftists scoring bigger wins in next year's midterms, but it's both a validation of Sanders and proof that the movement he built during the heated 2016 primaries isn't going away anytime soon.

Advertisement

Advertisement

More

Alternate links: Google News | Twitter

Other than Sanders himself, the most powerful socialist in America might now be a 30-year-old Marine vet named Lee Carter, who unseated Jackson Miller, one of the Republican leaders of the Virginia House of Delegates. He decided to run after he injured his back while working in 2015. "The treatment I got at the hands of my former employer, and at the hands of the Virginia's worker compensation commission was so horrible that I thought, I can't stand for this, I have to step up," Carter told me over the phone.

But he also took inspiration from Sanders's 2016 presidential campaign, he explained, which he saw as "a concrete example of how taking a strong inclusive message of economic empowerment can motivate people who have never been that interested in politics before to get up and get involved.

Carter attributes his nine-point victory to his campaign's ability to inspire the formerly uninspired. "We were going out with a strong economic message and talking to people at their doors, and telling them that there's a reason to believe that this election can make your life better in real measurable ways," he said. "We were able to get folks who have become disillusioned with the political process, people who vote infrequently, people who don't vote at all, typically, to go out there and stand in line at the polls on a 40-degree, rainy, miserable day."

Carter is one of the 15 members of the Democratic Socialists of America who were elected to local and state government last Tuesday. (Full disclosure: I am also a member of the DSA.) The DSA's success indicates a shift in the way Americans understand socialism -- it was not too long ago, in a pre-Bernie Sanders America, that "socialist" was a smear, used against Obama by his adversaries. But Sanders embraced that label, and to the terror of conservatives, more and more Americans are OK with saying they support socialism -- and, apparently, voting for socialists.

Vanessa Agudelo, a DSA member who won a seat on the Peekskill, New York, City Council last Tuesday, told me she "was very much inspired by Bernie Sanders and the movement he created."

Comments

Admin's note: Participants in this discussion must follow the site's moderation policy. Profanity will be filtered. Abusive conduct is not allowed.

"Carlina Rivera, a Democrat elected to the New York City Council from Manhattan, joined the DSA last April, while she was campaigning for her seat. "[I was] looking for their endorsement, to be very honest," she explained, but when she began to attend meetings, she found a very supportive community.

"When you're talking about running for office and campaigning, people are already trying to tell you that your ideas are too radical. You're not even elected yet and people are already saying, You know you're never going to get that done," Rivera told me over the phone. She found that DSA members encouraged her to stick to her convictions, and proved that there are many people who want to see leftist ideals enacted on a legislative level.

Fifteen socialists winning relatively minor offices is a long way away from seizing the means of production, but it's hopefully the beginning of something larger. Carter, who like many socialists wants a federal single-payer healthcare plan, told me that in the meanwhile, he wants to "step up and do it at the state level," as well as advocate for Medicaid expansion. "Medicaid expansion is step one, it's a very very important one. It's also important to recognize going into the fight that it is not the end goal," he told me."

#1 | Posted by PunchyPossum at 2017-11-18 09:14 PM | Reply

It's going to have to end up socialist, when the robots start to do all of our work and we have to retire.

It costs about $250,000 to raise, feed, clothe, educate and care for a Westerner. But his industrial value is over $1 million dollars.

It is perhaps possible that we can use Muslims and others as slaves, but when has that ever worked out? I mean, just read the Roman history of slavery. "One free man is worth ten slaves", according to their own philosophy.

#2 | Posted by HeliumRat at 2017-11-18 09:58 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

"I guess we'll have to watch it on the internets" - Corky

#3 | Posted by SheepleSchism at 2017-11-19 12:32 PM | Reply

All this revolutionary stuff going on. Thanks Bernie.

#4 | Posted by BruceBanner at 2017-11-20 01:06 AM | Reply

"socialist revolution" + "happening very slowly" = "Fabian Society"

The Fabian Society is a British socialist organization whose purpose is to advance the principles of democratic socialism via gradualist and reformist effort in democracies, rather than by revolutionary overthrow. As one of the founding organizations of the Labour Representation Committee in 1900, and as an important influence upon the Labour Party which grew from it, the Fabian Society has had a powerful influence on British politics. Other members of the Fabian Society have included political leaders from countries formerly part of the British Empire, such as: Jawaharlal Nehru, who adopted Fabian principles as part of their own political ideologies. In the Middle East, the theories of Fabian Society intellectual movement of early-20th-century Britain inspired the Ba'athist vision. The Middle East adaptation of Fabian socialism led the state to control big industry, transport, banks, internal and external trade. The state would direct the course of economic development, with the ultimate aim to provide a guaranteed minimum standard of living for all. Michel Aflaq, widely considered as the founder of the Ba'athist movement, was a Fabian socialist. Aflaq's ideas came to fruition in the Arab world in the form of dictatorial regimes in Iraq and Syria.

en.wikipedia.org

"The line between fascism and Fabian socialism is very thin. Fabian socialism is the dream. Fascism is Fabian socialism plus the inevitable dictator." - John T. Flynn

#5 | Posted by MUSTANG at 2017-11-20 08:04 AM | Reply | Funny: 1

Oh please Mustang. Trump is redistributing wealth. He is unilaterally deciding trade.

The things you say to fear are being done now.

Changing the courts guarantees that the changes will be very long lasting.

#6 | Posted by BruceBanner at 2017-11-20 08:30 AM | Reply

#6 Can you find one sentence you wrote that has anything to do with my post? Quit whitesplaining.

#7 | Posted by MUSTANG at 2017-11-20 08:45 AM | Reply

"led the state to control big industry, transport, banks, internal and external trade. The state would direct the course of economic development, with the ultimate aim to provide a guaranteed minimum standard of living for all."

Good example - Donald walking into American businesses and commanding the glow to run their business.

Another - Donald turning his rabid followers against peaceful protest for human rights.

#8 | Posted by BruceBanner at 2017-11-20 10:01 AM | Reply

The fear of socialism is that people who generate wealth would be forced to support those who don't.

Trump and the conservatives are doing just that.

They are taking money from the wage earner and consumer - who are responsible for 71% of our economy - and are giving it to people who do nothing. The people who inherit money, who just take a percentage of transactions, who are simply landlords.

#9 | Posted by BruceBanner at 2017-11-20 10:26 AM | Reply

#5 | Posted by MUSTANG

What I take from your post is that the theory of Fabian socialism has been used to get people to follow those who really didn't plan on implementing it properly anyways. It's just a tool to tell people what they want to hear to gain power, no?

So that means two things to me.

A. People in general like the notion of socialism, in practice if not in name, because their government is actually doing something to benefit them using the resource pool they contributed to. And that doesn't have to mean free stuff, welfare or handouts. In other words, it's a popular idea or set of ideas that is often overshadowed by its past abuses.

B. How was Trump's campaign not similar to that? He promised the world to his voters, just not under a "socialist" moniker, and told them their lives would improve by his using the government to assist them. And he's done none of it while in some ways acting like the tin pot dictators your link sites as the reasons for socialism being bad.

#10 | Posted by jpw at 2017-11-20 10:30 AM | Reply

Advertisement

Advertisement

#10 I honestly think they don't see it yet. Good explanation.

#11 | Posted by BruceBanner at 2017-11-20 11:14 AM | Reply

#10 Actually, my post was a simple 2+2=4. The PREMISE of the article is that Sander's socialist goals are being advanced in slow increments. I simply pointed out that socialism being advanced in small steps was the platform of the Fabian Socialists - and then provided examples of how poorly Fabian Socialism has fared using real world examples.

Brucie didn't like what he read and made a weak attempt at deflection with the old "Trump is doing it tooooooo" saw, and you got sucked in. EVERY political candidate makes a crapload of promises and then accomplishes very few of them. That is different than successfully implementing your promises and having the country devolve into a dictatorship as a result.

#12 | Posted by MUSTANG at 2017-11-20 12:11 PM | Reply | Funny: 1

Actually, my post was a simple 2+2=4.

Well, no it's not because there's no agreement that Bernie's policies being enacted actually equals 2.

I simply pointed out that socialism being advanced in small steps was the platform of the Fabian Socialists

Which is BS. You're smearing it in a typically shallow and intellectually dishonest fashion.

and you got sucked in

BS. I called it as reality is presenting it. Trump is failing at what he tries and he isn't trying to live up to campaign promises.

EVERY political candidate makes a crapload of promises and then accomplishes very few of them.

Usually because the realities of the job make it impossible to do so.

With Trump, it's because he never meant to fulfill them. The ------- even openly admitted it once he won. MULTIPLE TIMES!

You can act as if he's normal all you want but he's not and you're just being intellectually dishonest doing so.

That is different than successfully implementing your promises and having the country devolve into a dictatorship as a result.

Except a Trump dictatorship wouldn't occur because he fulfilled his promises.

Did you not get, at all, the point of my post?

He LIED to get people to vote for him and is now actively dicking over 99% of those voters with the policies he's enacting in place of those he promised them. He's just lying some more and telling them that the giant dicking over that he's passing is what he promised and what they want.

The only way that you can possibly still support Trump is either by having zero standards to judge him by besides he's an R or you're a shill/POS who thinks they'll benefit from his garbage policies.

#13 | Posted by jpw at 2017-11-20 11:24 PM | Reply

#13 | POSTED BY JPW

That was one of the more long-winded and non-specific "rejoinders" I've seen in a while.

You should have just said, "Nuh Uh!!!" and saved a bunch of keystrokes.

#14 | Posted by JeffJ at 2017-11-20 11:32 PM | Reply

That was one of the more long-winded and non-specific "rejoinders" I've seen in a while.

If you don't see the logical fallacies in his posts then it's no surprise you think my post amounts to "nuh uh".

The same biases hiding his garbage logic from your recognition would lead you to misrepresenting or not comprehending my post.

#15 | Posted by jpw at 2017-11-21 01:11 AM | Reply

Comments are closed for this entry.

Home | Breaking News | Comments | User Blogs | Stats | Back Page | RSS Feed | RSS Spec | DMCA Compliance | Privacy | Copyright 2018 World Readable

Drudge Retort