I'm quitting the Democratic Party. They have taken me for granted and/or ignored progressives and liberals in favor of some non-existent middle ground one too many times.
I will always be a liberal and a progressive. I marched for the ERA in the 1970's and I believe in the Constitution of the United States of America. I'm against the theory of the Unitary Executive and in favor of the Bill of Rights. When I can afford it, I'm a "card carrying member of the ACLU."
I am no longer a Democrat.
There have been many signs over the last years that the Democratic Party was being controlled by corporate interests who were driving it further and further to the right in an attempt to capture some "center" that doesn't really exist. Rahm Emanuell is just one symptom, as is Nancy Pelosi's taking impeachment "off the table" and Reid's unwillingness to push harder for Inherent Contempt charges in the Senate.
The Senate vote on 20-Sept-07 to demean and debase MoveOn.org (an organization that I generally support, though I've had my differences with them over their strange positions on Election Reform) was the last straw.
For 22 Democratic Senators to believe they needed to ride roughshod over the First Amendment in order to look "strong on the military" was a pathetic and weak move. This from a leadership that couldn't even get a bill past a filibuster, but didn't seem to want to do any filibustering of their own when they were in the minority? I wasn't impressed. The Military Commissions Act and the NSA Spy Program wouldn't even BE laws if the minority Democrats had the same level of cohesive resolve IN SUPPORT OF THE U.S. CONSTITUTION THEY PLEDGED TO UPHOLD that the Rethuglicans are showing towards its destruction.
So far, since November 2006, I don't think the Democratic-controlled House/Senate has produced ANYTHING of importance that hasn't been vetoed by Bush or negated by a signing statement. Nobody in the Rethuglican Administration has been held accountable for any of their criminal actions, and we are on the brink of a war with Iran that could destroy stability in the middle east and make America the most hated nation on earth for the next two generations simply to feed the ego and vile of the neocons who are running parts of our government.
The fate of our nation and perhaps even the world hangs in the balance as maniacs and criminals control our government and destroy more and more of our historic institutions with each day they hold power, AND THE DEMOCRATS DO NOTHING BUT BIDE THEIR TIME AND "KEEP THEIR POWDER DRY."
I give up. The system really IS broken, and the people I always thought would be my heroes have shown themselves to be sell-outs and weak-willed corporate cronies.
I am no longer a Democrat, but that doesn't mean I've decided where I will put my support.
I can't be a libertarian, because while I support hemp growing/smoking and free sex, I do believe that with membership in a civilized society comes some responsibility to every member of that society, and that means paying my taxes in fair amount so that we can invest in our mutual needs and grow as a nation and a people.
I can't be a communist or socialist because I do believe that there should be room for people to be rewarded for their work and original ideas and creativity (although I also think they can be progressively taxed after a threshold of wealth has been reached), and mostly I don't trust THIS government (or probably any other ever again) to take ownership of much of our society's property or to control who can own guns.
I can't be a rethuglican, because they have shown a willingness to support party over country without thought to the consequences, and I can never forgive any of them for that and would never join them in that demented viewpoint.
So, let me know when the new party is formed.
The party I give my allegiance to must support the Constitution of the United States of America, fairness, freedom, and openness. It must be inclusive and non-judgmental. It should appreciate our role as just ONE country among a planet of countries and not believe that we have some god-given right to rule the world. It must support the rights of ALL people to live in freedom and practice religion and sexuality as they wish, so long as doing so doesn't hurt anybody else. They must believe in PUBLIC ownership of PUBLIC airwaves and resources, not corporate control of them.
Until then, I'm holding my breath and hoping that somebody else on this planet will choose to hold the Rethuglicans in power in the USA accountable for their actions, because it is clear that our own government is merely going to enable them through January of 2009, and probably continue most of their sick policies thereafter, whichever party is elected to office, assuming that elections are even held.