A former “Left” blogger

Back at the end of January, I decided to leave one of the more prominent “left” blogs.   While it seemed to be a “sudden” decision,  it was actually the culmination of a long process of disillusionment.   Mind you, I didn’t become a conservative.  What I am is a pragmatic liberal.   That is, I’m reality based, and more interested in accomplishing something, rather than adhering to a philosophically ideal  construct.  It’s one of the things that’s made me direct more than a little scorn against the Tea Party groups and Republicans.   That said, I’m not excusing various people (and groups) from the “lefty blogs,” either.  They’re just as prone to forget reality, or to decide that purity is more important than results as the far right are.

I ran into this during the healthcare reform debates.  There was a sizable crew at Daily Kos and Firedoglake who were arguing vehemently for “killing the bill.”    Why?  Because it wasn’t perfect. You see, they wanted single-payer healthcare, and no compromises.  Since this bill wasn’t it, or even their “fallback” of a “public option,” it was (to them) fatally flawed, and should be canned.  I got it.  Really.  I understood why they felt the bill was flawed, heck, there were points where I agreed with them on the flaws.  Where I had a problem with them was that they had no fallback for failure, or what they did have didn’t even come close to matching political reality.   How did I know that?  Because I actually flat out asked them in a number of their diaries, and received no answer.  So I posted my own diary, challenging them to show me the plan – and they couldn’t.

If that had been the only cause or battle, I very likely would have stayed around.  The problem was that it wasn’t.  There was no legislative initiative that didn’t meet with their scorn.  They’d label it a “failure,” and proceed to rend their clothing and moan about the betrayal.  There were various threats of retribution issued (“primary them!”),  along with statements that it would be better to lose elections than it would to keep certain Democrats in office.  A recent example was the financial reforms passed by Congress.  No sooner did it pass – literally – there were bloggers on the left posting diatribes about what a failure it was, how bad it was, and how the President had “sold out” to Wall Street.  It’s apparent that none of them have an understanding of governing, but they do have an ideology.

Once again, I’m seeing them in action.  The President’s Press Secretary made some comments about the “professional left.”   The whining, screaming, moaning conniption fits that followed from the same groups would have led one to believe that he had mortally offended one of the key demographic bases.  The reality check?   They’re not.  They’ve been griping since the beginning, and while they’re noisy, they are not the base.  They’re not even representative of “liberals.”

It’s nice to have ideals, but at the same time, one must take reality into account, and deal with facts.  Not what you may want to believe, but what is.  That was my problem with them.  I have ideals as well, but I also have a strong pragmatic streak.   I’ve had enough experience in life where the “ideal” is the “not going to work.”    I’ve had my own share of run-ins with people who tout their ideal when it doesn’t match the reality, and it has made me more than a little skeptical of people who have a “perfect solution” to a long-standing, complex problem.    I also like to paint a win as … a win. It’s not a loss.    So I’m not a blogger on the “left” anymore, because I’m an adult.  Maybe someday they’ll grow up, but until then, I’d rather not put up with it.

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8 Comments

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8 responses to “A former “Left” blogger

  1. NYCO

    Yeah, but you’re assuming that Daily Kos was ever about “left blogging.” It was (and is) a large cyber-containment area for naive novice politicos. Kos did a bangup job of rounding up these people, convincing them that the Scoop framework (where everyone could have their own promotable “blogs” on Daily Kos) was the best facilitator for “the netroots,” and then he and his friends just bundled and harvested the small donations eagerly sent in by the sheep. It was a great racket for a while, and a lot of politicians remained interested in this revenue stream even after the big candidates fell out of love with it. You have described one of the ways they keep the sheep well herded – carefully orchestrated campaigns of outrage.

    BTW, there are always new sheep trickling in to the Kos operation, so your departure will probably be no more noted than mine was several years ago (although I still have a username there, and a ridiculously low UID. I could get on there right now and say nothing but “Apples, bananas, rhinoceros” and people would be going “Shhh! Listen to her! She’s 407!” which sadly shows the mentality.)

    • It wasn’t just Daily Kos. 🙂 But there are certain communities there that will miss me, and I do hold the distinction of having had a rec list diary with a sizable number of troll ratings on the tip jar. I just thought it was so typical the way they all had the vapors today.

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  3. I know why you left. But sane voices are so sorely missed in what is characterized as the lefty blogosphere. I still post on the big orange, as you know, but I have stopped wasting my time arguing with obvious baits and people who don’t want a serious discussion (which is a whole lot).

    I do like your blog though. I like reading it. 🙂

    • You have a lot more patience than I do. “Tolerates fools gladly” is not one of my character traits. I do notice that you drive them nuts with your continuing use of facts and reason.

  4. Norbrook, for the short time I’ve been reading your blog I must say that you are the most common sense, reality thinking liberal I have ever interacted with.

    You’re worth listening to and having discussion with.

    Thanks.

    • Thank you. 🙂 I’m not the only one out there. A number of us packed our tents and left various sites a while back. I enjoy your blog too – and yes, sometimes you do provoke some thinking on my part. 😛

      • CTDem

        Hi Norbrook, Deaniac – I just arrived through FB. “Another” was before CTDem on the orange. Thank you for an excellent “diary” (whatever the articles are called here:))