Monday, July 02, 2007

Conversations on Independence

Another good post on the Post by An Ordinary Person and Politics in America:

If the Post, Kaiser and Harvard really wanted to get to the heart of the matter on the phenomenon of Political Independents I would urge them to actually start talking with Independent activists and reformers who are trying to change the System. Hey it’s not hard to find them. I only started this blog two months ago and I’ve made plenty of contacts and spoken with many of these types of people.
I agree. Kinda makes you wonder, doesn't it?


Anonymous said...

I wouldn't trust the corporate media as far as you could throw them....

jeff roby said...

It's not a matter of trusting them. In fact, the Washington Post article was a breakthrough. Rather than treating independents as just swing voters, as Jackie herself has decried, the article attempts to understand independents in their diversity. As one of the writers points out in a later discussion, "the premise of this project was that all independents are not alike.” In particular, it distinguishes those fed up with the system as an emerging group, distinct from swing voters, eclectics, “closet partisans,” and those who have simply given up on politics.

No, the article was not written so that the Post’s evil corporate masters could promote independent politics. Rather they see independence as a threat that must be taken seriously, beyond one-shot candidacies like Perot’s. Of course they didn’t interview Jackie Salit, and your indignation is appropriate.

But as a tactical matter, the response to mainstream elements should be to embrace and take further, not to snippily reject, unless you revel in your isolation. And frankly, I think that this blog should look harder at the actual diversity of independents, rather than to claim diversity while making statements to the effect that “independents this” and “independents that,” as though anyone could speak for independents at this historical moment. We’ve got a good head start in the race for the soul of the independent movement, to the extent that it has coherency. But the race is far, far from over.