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Tue Aug 8, 2017, 09:58 AM

John Nichols: Socialism never went away, but now it's really back

When a thousand socialists from across the United States gathered in Chicago over the weekend for the biennial convention of the Democratic Socialists of America, DSA national director Maria Svart declared: “What we're seeing today is historic: the largest gathering of democratic socialists in an era.“

Since the 2016 election, Svart is delighted to report, “tens of thousands of democratic socialists have come together to build a future for this country in which everyone has the right to a decent job, a good home, a free college education for their children, and health care for their family. For years, we've been sold hope and promised change by Wall Street politicians — now we're taking matters into our own hands.”

DSA got a big boost from the surge of interest in democratic socialism that extended from the presidential candidacy of Bernie Sanders, who upended decades of right-wing histrionics and media neglect bordering on malpractice when he declared: "Do they think I’m afraid of the word? I’m not afraid of the word. When I ran for the Senate the first time, I ran again st the wealthiest guy in the state of Vermont. He spent a lot on advertising — very ugly stuff. He kept attacking me as a liberal. He didn’t use the word ‘socialist’ at all, because everybody in the state knows that I am that."

Far from being harmed by his embrace of the S word, Sanders benefited from the fact that he was not another apologist for a capitalist experiment that had produced market instability, cruel austerity and scorching income inequality. Young people, in particular, were excited about alternatives.

Read more: http://host.madison.com/ct/opinion/column/john_nichols/john-nichols-socialism-never-went-away-but-now-it-s/article_f9a220d2-7fb6-5ab0-8759-90c06133c04e.html

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Reply John Nichols: Socialism never went away, but now it's really back (Original post)
TexasTowelie Aug 2017 OP
yallerdawg Aug 2017 #1

Response to TexasTowelie (Original post)

Tue Aug 8, 2017, 10:20 AM

1. But look what happens when we get "more experienced" (pragmatic).

Over 36 hours this weekend, the country's largest anti-capitalist organization would vote to leave the Socialist International, a mismash of parties from around the world that DSA has been affiliated with since its inception in 1982; to support the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement against Israel (one Congress is now considering legislation to criminalize, a juxtaposition that delighted many delegates; and resoundingly affirm the push for universal, single payer health care as the organization's defining fight.

Given the chance to formally, and forcibly, extract themselves from any relationship with the Democrats, and promote a third party alternative, delegates in Chicago voted overwhelmingly against a call for the senator to establish his own. When faced with the question more broadly, a number of delegates and member observers I spoke to were openly skeptical. "We don't want to end up like the Green Party," one activist mused.

"As a historian and a movement person, I know that when people win, they are motivated, and when they lose, they are not motivated," said Maria Svart, DSA's national director. "So that's a big part of why we think it's really important to take that into account and be really pragmatic and realistic."

From: http://www.cnn.com/2017/08/08/politics/democratic-socialists-of-america-convention-2017/index.html

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