What T___p, Putin, Farage and Doug Ford represent isn't "populism"...it's "patriarchalism"

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Ken Burch Ken Burch's picture
What T___p, Putin, Farage and Doug Ford represent isn't "populism"...it's "patriarchalism"

The term "populism" has been widely misused of late.   

Actual populism simply means being a leader who does what the people want.  

It involves having a sense of the common good, and a basic desire to make life better for the many, if not all.

At its worst, populism, in some cases(such as in the U.S. in the 19th Century) has pandered to bigotry...but that pandering doesn't define the idea, and it's entirely possible(and has been done by people like Jim Hightower in Texas in the Eighties and Nineties to Hugo Chavez at his best) to have a populist politics that is free of bigotry and demagogy.

What people like D___d T___p, Vladimir Putin, the near-fascist leaders of Hungary and Poland, Doug Ford, and the increasingly psychotic Rodrigo Duterte represent is not "populism" in the true sense.  Their politics are not about doing what the people want-they are about punishing one part of the people to appease the unjustified resentments of another part of the people.  They are about a rigid fixation with "order" at the expense of all other values.  They are about the notion that a nation needs to be led by a strong, harsh, inflexible "great father" figure, who is seen as all-knowing and infallible; the rest of the population are expected to see themselves as "the children", who can never have any say in the decisions that affect them, but must simply obey, in exchange for a beautiful, delusional myth of "national greatness".

Therefore, since they aren't technically fascist-these leaders go through the motions of having elections, allow a nominally independent press, and have not as yet ordered mass executions, I propose that we label their ideology as "Patriarchalism".  "Patriarchalism" suits the words and deeds of these figures, and allows the rest of us to reclaim the term "populism" to mean what it was always meant to mean:  the empowerment and liberation of ALL of the people.

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Quote:
I propose that we label their ideology as "Patriarchalism".

That seems unnecessarily "genital" obsessed.

Also, really, I never personally thought that "populist" meant "beloved of all the people".  I always took it to mean "popular enough with enough of the electorate to get elected".

Notwithstanding false nostalgic memories of that politician who was beloved by EVERYBODY that time, even the most "populist" politician will have critics.  They're popular with some but not with others.

Pondering

I agree with Ken. What we are seeing is fake populism which is why it is sometimes used as a pejorative term. Genuine populism is tough to come by. 

voice of the damned

Actual populism simply means being a leader who does what the people want.  

It involves having a sense of the common good, and a basic desire to make life better for the many, if not all.

So, if "the people" want a return to capital punishement, any politician who supports that "has a sense of the common good, and a basic desire to make life better for the many, if not all"?

Because that would seem to follow, from combining the two characteristis of populism, mentioned in your quote above.

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Quote:
Genuine populism is tough to come by.

Populism isn't partisan.  It's whatever the people (the electorate) like or are ready to support.  And speaking only for myself, I tend to think of it as including those things that people might WANT but that cannot necessarily be rationalized.  Like "buck a beer".

Pondering

voice of the damned wrote:

Actual populism simply means being a leader who does what the people want.  

It involves having a sense of the common good, and a basic desire to make life better for the many, if not all.

So, if "the people" want a return to capital punishement, any politician who supports that "has a sense of the common good, and a basic desire to make life better for the many, if not all"?

Because that would seem to follow, from combining the two characteristis of populism, mentioned in your quote above.

We have checks and balances to make sure radical changes like that have to pass through many tests before becoming law. We have a  Charter of Rights and Freedoms which is the supreme law of the land. 

But, if the majority of Canadians wanted capital punishment back enough to fight for it for years, yes it should happen. I believe the "no" side would win but democracy can't only apply if you like the answers. 

JKR

Another term that can be used to describe politicians like T___p, Putin, Farage and Doug Ford, could be "demagogue."

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Demagogue

Quote:
A demagogue or rabble-rouser is a leader in a democracy who gains popularity by exploiting prejudice and ignorance among the common people, whipping up the passions of the crowd and shutting down reasoned deliberation. Demagogues overturn established customs of political conduct, or promise or threaten to do so.

Demagogues have appeared in democracies since ancient Athens. They exploit a fundamental weakness in democracy: because ultimate power is held by the people, it is possible for the people to give that power to someone who appeals to the lowest common denominator of a large segment of the population. Demagogues usually advocate immediate, forceful action to address a national crisis while accusing moderate and thoughtful opponents of weakness or disloyalty.

Ken Burch Ken Burch's picture

JKR wrote:
Another term that can be used to describe politicians like T___p, Putin, Farage and Doug Ford, could be "demagogue." https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Demagogue
Quote:
A demagogue or rabble-rouser is a leader in a democracy who gains popularity by exploiting prejudice and ignorance among the common people, whipping up the passions of the crowd and shutting down reasoned deliberation. Demagogues overturn established customs of political conduct, or promise or threaten to do so. Demagogues have appeared in democracies since ancient Athens. They exploit a fundamental weakness in democracy: because ultimate power is held by the people, it is possible for the people to give that power to someone who appeals to the lowest common denominator of a large segment of the population. Demagogues usually advocate immediate, forceful action to address a national crisis while accusing moderate and thoughtful opponents of weakness or disloyalty.

"Demagogue" also works.

Ken Burch Ken Burch's picture

Mr. Magoo wrote:

Quote:
I propose that we label their ideology as "Patriarchalism".

That seems unnecessarily "genital" obsessed.

Also, really, I never personally thought that "populist" meant "beloved of all the people".  I always took it to mean "popular enough with enough of the electorate to get elected".

Notwithstanding false nostalgic memories of that politician who was beloved by EVERYBODY that time, even the most "populist" politician will have critics.  They're popular with some but not with others.

The "genital" emphasis(I'd have said "male supremacist"), is something I stand by.  What people like T__p, Putin, Doug Ford and Duterte represent is a deeply masculinist notion of politics and society.  Look at the fixation all of them have with the idea that there's a conspiracy to "feminize" men and to "feminize" life.   It's why it ties in to the Jordan Peterson/Men's Rights Alliance view of things.

And I didn't use the phrase "beloved of all the people" to describe populism.  I did use the phrase "doing what the people want", but to clarify, meant that in(in describing the kind of positive populism I was trying to define) acting in a way to make most people's lives better in social and economic terms-in the U.S., it has meant things like standing up to the big banks, supporting small farmers against agribusiness, encouraging the establishment of public utilities and co-ops.  It had some characteristics that seemed to echo social democracy, but was pitched towards people who weren't comfortable with identifying with the Left, largely due to the equation in the U.S. of any form of the Left with "Communism". 

Pogo Pogo's picture

BC has a number of what I term populist leaders. Dave Barret, WAC Bennet and Bill Vanderzalm -minus the crazy- come to mind.  The term to me means that the platform is meant not just to speak the electorates needs (say like Alan Blakeney, or Bill Bennett), but also connects with the electorate on an emotional level.

Ken Burch Ken Burch's picture

Pogo wrote:

BC has a number of what I term populist leaders. Dave Barret, WAC Bennet and Bill Vanderzalm -minus the crazy- come to mind.  The term to me means that the platform is meant not just to speak the electorates needs (say like Alan Blakeney, or Bill Bennett), but also connects with the electorate on an emotional level.

Fair enough.  The intent of true non-patriarchalist populism is to give the voters a sense that the party or the party leader seeking their votes not only presents "policies", but actually cares about them on a personal level.  In and of itself, there's nothing wrong with that, and any party seeking the votes of an electorate should actually care about the electorate as people, should actually validate people, recognize their worth and honor the best of what people are.  

This is another reason why politicians like T___p/Putin/the Fords/Duterte claim to care about the people, but actually see the people, the electorate, the citizens of the jurisdictions they rule or feel they are entitled to rule, as pathetic, irrelevant scum...they are simply able to convince enough of the electorate(aided, in the case of Putin, who has become more of a uncrowned, de facto tsar than a simple head of state, with the use of the coercive power of the state security regime and a vote-counting system solely under his own control) that they "love" the people and know what is best for them.  

The difference between populism and patriarchalism is that the populist means it when she or he says they seek to change life for the better for the many...the patriarchalist is able to fake that commitment on the stump and before the cameras.

Populism is not the same as fascism, or the same as demagogy.  It can be as sincere and positive-if not more than-bland, passionless, mundane, stubbornly non-transformative "liberal democracy".  

But it is not a term that should be applied to those it is applied to today in Washington, Moscow, Europe, or Queen's Park.

Michael Moriarity Michael Moriarity's picture

My idea of an archetypal populist is Huey Long. He came from a relatively prosperous family in a very poor area of northern Louisiana, which voted for the Socialist Eugene Debs in the 1912 presidential election. He had a very colourful career before entering politics as a traveling salesman and gambler, then later as a litigation lawyer who sued the wealthy on behalf of the poor. On the other hand, he was extremely corrupt, and didn't even actually complete law school. He cared about the "little man", but he also wanted the best of everything for himself. He was a popular U.S. senator, and was about to challenge FDR for the presidency from the left when he was assassinated in 1935.

Randy Newman has done a version of the Huey Long campaign song Every Man a King, and also Newman's own take on Long, Kingfish.

6079_Smith_W

Not quibbling with the term, but it is interesting that the person who really started it (in its modern incarnation, anyway) was Mrs. Torture.

Though the first American to get into the White House using it was Andrew Jackson.

And a slightly different strain, but what about Trudeau the Elder? It doesn't get more macho than "Just Watch Me".

voice of the damned

6079_Smith_W wrote:

 

And a slightly different strain, but what about Trudeau the Elder? It doesn't get more macho than "Just Watch Me".

Plus, he portrayed himself as very anti-elite during the Quebec referendum, and later the Meech and Charlottetown Accords.

"Who wants more, power, Barbara? The politicians want more power. Not the people. We know that no one is better than anyone else. But the politicians want more power for themselves etc etc"

Ken Burch Ken Burch's picture

voice of the damned wrote:

6079_Smith_W wrote:

 

And a slightly different strain, but what about Trudeau the Elder? It doesn't get more macho than "Just Watch Me".

Plus, he portrayed himself as very anti-elite during the Quebec referendum, and later the Meech and Charlottetown Accords.

"Who wants more, power, Barbara? The politicians want more power. Not the people. We know that no one is better than anyone else. But the politicians want more power for themselves etc etc"

I assume the irony of his words utterly eluded him.

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Quote:
The "genital" emphasis(I'd have said "male supremacist"), is something I stand by.  What people like T__p, Putin, Doug Ford and Duterte represent is a deeply masculinist notion of politics and society.

OK.  I guess I thought you were trying to replace "populist" outright, but I don't disagree with applying "patriarchalist" to the cases you mention.

Personally, I prefer the term "the People's Strongman".  They're not just old-school chauvenists and manly men.  They need to periodically pick bar-fights to show their supporters that they're ready to smash a bottle over the heads of the enemies of the people, too.  And there's LOTS more examples of that than just the four you mention.

Ken Burch Ken Burch's picture

Mr. Magoo wrote:

Quote:
The "genital" emphasis(I'd have said "male supremacist"), is something I stand by.  What people like T__p, Putin, Doug Ford and Duterte represent is a deeply masculinist notion of politics and society.

OK.  I guess I thought you were trying to replace "populist" outright, but I don't disagree with applying "patriarchalist" to the cases you mention.

Personally, I prefer the term "the People's Strongman".  They're not just old-school chauvenists and manly men.  They need to periodically pick bar-fights to show their supporters that they're ready to smash a bottle over the heads of the enemies of the people, too.  And there's LOTS more examples of that than just the four you mention.

1) I was never trying to replace the term "populist"-just to point out that it's a form of politics that, while not totally sufficient for the project of creating a democratic and inclusive society-we need some form of decentralized, libertarian socialism for that-has done at least as much good as bad, and should not be applied to the type of politicians we're discussing here.  

2) To me, one of the worst things that comes of equating people like that type of politician with "populism" is that it sets up a false narrative in which the only way to defeat "populism" is by putting dismissive, detached, center-right "technocratic" figures, the sort of politicians who will simply carry out the corporate austerity agenda in all situations; it creates the implication that ANY form of politics based on connecting with the actual material and, yes, emotional needs of the population is inherently suspect and probably doomed to end up in some sort of dictatorial mess, that the only way to avoid that outcome is to have an elitist politics in which ordinary people are automatically disregarded and, yes, an "elite" is assumed to know what's best for all.

It creates a dangerous situation to imply that any politics that is responsive to voter wishes and seeks to validate ordinary people in any meaningful way is, essentially, evil.

2) Yes, there are many, many other "patriarchalist" leaders in the world today.  

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Quote:
it creates the implication that ANY form of politics based on connecting with the actual material and, yes, emotional needs of the population is inherently suspect and probably doomed to end up in some sort of dictatorial mess

Can you expand on the "emotional needs" of the electorate?  Maybe that deserves its own thread, but I'd like to hear more about those.

Ken Burch Ken Burch's picture

Mr. Magoo wrote:

Quote:
it creates the implication that ANY form of politics based on connecting with the actual material and, yes, emotional needs of the population is inherently suspect and probably doomed to end up in some sort of dictatorial mess

Can you expand on the "emotional needs" of the electorate?  Maybe that deserves its own thread, but I'd like to hear more about those.

By that, the voters need a visceral, perceivable sense I'd say most people have that those who lead the government actually care about us, actually want to hear what we have to say, actually value our existence and don't see us as simply pawns in their game.   This need, as I see it, calls on us as activists, and should call on the parties who seek power in electoral politics to challenge what Robert Kennedy referred to as "the inhumanity of institutions".  

Doug Ford is a cynical reactionary bastard, but he led his party to victory because he sounded(yes, it was bullshit, but from him it was persuasive bullshit) as if he was going to be the sort of political leader who did offer such validation.

Why can't the Left combat that by choosing leaders who actually DO care about and make a point of validating and valuing the people whose votes the Left seeks?  Why not lead with actual empathy?

That's what Jeremy Corbyn does as the leader of the Labour Party in the UK...a party now four points ahead of the Tories in the latest poll, a lead that would be much larger if his own party's right wing wouldn't keep undermining him and wasn't still trying to remove him as leader so they could replace him with a Blairite).  It works for him.  It worked for Tommy.  

And I'm not sure why being older and experienced means so much to you.  Mulcair was older and experienced, and he lost half the party's seats.  David Lewis was older and experienced, and HE lost half the party's seats(including his own) by forcing a snap election for no real reason in 1974.  Tommy was great in Saskatchewan politics when he was younger and passionate; when he became the first NDP leader in 1961, he was older and experienced and the results of that were mediocre at best.

 

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Quote:
By that, the voters need a visceral, perceivable sense I'd say most people have that those who lead the government actually care about us, actually want to hear what we have to say, actually value our existence and don't see us as simply pawns in their game.

OK.  Do you feel that -- regardless of whether you agree with those parties or feel the same as their supporters -- winning parties have done this?

alan smithee alan smithee's picture

Nigel Farage looks like he sucks dog shit through his nose. And Boris Johnson looks like a villain from Scooby Doo.

This brand of 'populism' is just to embolden the fascists who've been hiding under their rocks for the past 60 years.

I hope the good people of Ontario enjoy their choice. Nobody to blame but themselves. But you're next, Quebec!

WWWTT

I’m probably the first and only communist here at rabble babble that will comment in this thread. 

Western democracy is a joke to start with. Adding these terms like populist and debating with them back and forth makes that little voice in the back of my head say “own it!”

Why don’t you posters just admit it, your democracy produces a bunch of shit ass useless good for nothing overpaid garbage waste of time unmemorable politicians? 

Populism is just another lame ass excuse for a system that’s going no where. 

I give it 3 years and and the media will move on to the next lame ass excuse to divert attention away corporate control. And the wannabe intellects will fall for it!

Cody87

Ken Burch wrote:
Their politics are not about doing what the people want-they are about punishing one part of the people to appease the unjustified resentments of another part of the people. 

This is fantastic - concise, scathing, and accessible. Did you write it or is it a quote from some well-known person?

Asking because I will surely make use of it in the future.

Ken Burch Ken Burch's picture

Mr. Magoo wrote:

Quote:
By that, the voters need a visceral, perceivable sense I'd say most people have that those who lead the government actually care about us, actually want to hear what we have to say, actually value our existence and don't see us as simply pawns in their game.

OK.  Do you feel that -- regardless of whether you agree with those parties or feel the same as their supporters -- winning parties have done this?

I wasn't claiming that that's what every winning party in the history of electoral politics has done-there have been different things that led to electoral victories in different eras.  And it's not as though it has to be "every party that ever won has done this" or else nothing.  What I'm saying is that that has pretty much been what most winning parties in most elections in recent histories have in some way done.  Is there something you object to in the idea that political parties, especially progressive political paries need to convey a visceral sense of empathy with the voters?  Why does that seem to bother you?

For progressives, "soundbites", detachment and a cold "professionalism" doesn't work anymore-if they ever really did.  "Respectability" doesn't work anymore, if it ever really did.  We lose if we come off as dismissive centrist technocrats or bureaucrats, focused on managerialism "effeciency" and coming across as "safe" above all else.

 

6079_Smith_W

@ WWWTT

Don't take this as anti-communist rhetoric. Joe Zuken was one of the best city councillors my home town ever had, even if he resorted to slumming by taking part in western democratic systems.

But if westerners are supposed to "own" populism does that mean you get to own all the abberrations of the system you support?

... including more than a few macho populists, since it isn't something exclusive to democracy. If anything authoritarian, fascist and revolutionary movements have more, IMO.

lagatta4

How about Juan Perón?

voice of the damned

lagatta4 wrote:

How about Juan Perón?

Wasn't his whole schtick that he was an elitist hardliner, but benevolently brought down to the level of the people by his bountifully compassionate  wife?

(Mostly going by Lloyd Webber here.)

6079_Smith_W

It's still a bullshit appeal to Das Volk, and Blut und Erde. Regardless of how he got there.

No, this isn't exclusive to western democracy. In fact a lot of criticism of the west uses those exact same tropes.

In fact, if this is going to be spun as a flaw of democracy, what are you saying, that people can't be trusted to govern themselves, and need a strong leader?

 

voice of the damned

6079_Smith_W wrote:

It's still a bullshit appeal to Das Volk, and Blut und Erde. Regardless of how he got there.

If that's addressed to my comments on Peron, I wasn't trying to exonerate him of anything. I just thought Lagatta might have been speculating how his image meshed with the idea of "patriarchalism", and I'd say that it IS patriarchal, although with a feminine element that wasn't present in most fascist leaders.

Of course, patriarchialism and feminine elements aren't mutually exclusive, at all, as anyone familar with Catholic iconography can tell you.

6079_Smith_W

It is. Not saying you are wrong, but just underscoring that it is still more of the same.

progressive17 progressive17's picture

The populists are doing well because it serves you right! 

WWWTT

@ 6079 Smith

you wrote 

But if westerners are supposed to "own" populism does that mean you get to own all the abberrations of the system you support?

Actually are you referring to how the west have used their revisionalist history to demonize some communist leaders? 

Heres a compromise, I’ll own anything communism comes up with, including Xi JinPing, and supporters of western democracy can own Trump Justin and Ford. But hey if you want to move the goal posts around....

6079_Smith_W

Well, no. I'm talking about events like the great leap forward, which probably wiped out 50 million people. That number is a Chinese estimate, not a western one.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_Leap_Forward

Just one example. There are several more.

Look WWWTT, I'm not actually trying to pin it on you, or communism. And you trying to lay this all at the feet of democratic systems when there are examples that are at least as bad elsewhere doesn't make much sense either.

 

lagatta4

Yes, I certainly think of Peronism as both patriarchal and "populist" in the sense of creating the illusion of being on the people's side.

Argentina is most certainly a Western country, though even the more affluent South American countries are afflicted with dependency and neo-imperialism. Old joke that Mexicans came down from the Aztecs, Peruvians from the Incas, and Argentineans from the boats.

Patriarchy isn't only male dominance over females, but also older men dominating younger men, hence the "father figure".

Ken Burch Ken Burch's picture

WWWTT wrote:

@ 6079 Smith

you wrote 

But if westerners are supposed to "own" populism does that mean you get to own all the abberrations of the system you support?

Actually are you referring to how the west have used their revisionalist history to demonize some communist leaders? 

Heres a compromise, I’ll own anything communism comes up with, including Xi JinPing, and supporters of western democracy can own Trump Justin and Ford. But hey if you want to move the goal posts around....

Would you at least agree that no state should ever do anything like the purges or the Cultural Revolution again?  That socialism and communism should never be again be used as a pretext for brutal repression, but should instead be about human liberation, about giving the global multicultural working-class majority DIRECT control of the means of production(i.e., the workplace in any manifestation of its existence)?

 

Ken Burch Ken Burch's picture

voice of the damned wrote:

lagatta4 wrote:

How about Juan Perón?

Wasn't his whole schtick that he was an elitist hardliner, but benevolently brought down to the level of the people by his bountifully compassionate  wife?

(Mostly going by Lloyd Webber here.)

And that this somehow led to Che singing show tunes.  

Peron embodies the duality of some populist rulers.  Thanks, Lagatta.

progressive17 progressive17's picture

Ken Burch wrote:

WWWTT wrote:

@ 6079 Smith

you wrote 

But if westerners are supposed to "own" populism does that mean you get to own all the abberrations of the system you support?

Actually are you referring to how the west have used their revisionalist history to demonize some communist leaders? 

Heres a compromise, I’ll own anything communism comes up with, including Xi JinPing, and supporters of western democracy can own Trump Justin and Ford. But hey if you want to move the goal posts around....

Would you at least agree that no state should ever do anything like the purges or the Cultural Revolution again?  That socialism and communism should never be again be used as a pretext for brutal repression, but should instead be about human liberation, about giving the global multicultural working-class majority DIRECT control of the means of production(i.e., the workplace in any manifestation of its existence)?

 

Communists will never answer this, as the ends always justify their means.

Ken Burch Ken Burch's picture

progressive17 wrote:

The populists are doing well because it serves you right! 

Who are you referring to by "you" there?  Nobody on this board is responsible for any of the decisions that have alienated voters from the NDP or other "center-left" parties.  If you want to say it serves the political class right, that's likely a fair observation.   But not people who are part of this thread.  What are you enraged at US about?  We weren't the ones encouraging the Left to de-emphasize class and economic equality.

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

Any politician who says he knows the will of the people is speaking in broad generalities. I know the will of the people, they want the government to deliver on the bottom two tiers of this pyramid. Most people don't care what ideology you are expounding if they believe you can deliver the goods. Con-men/populists promise the people not just the bottom two but all of them.

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Interesting.  I'd suggest that:

1.  "Incels" would love the government to deliver on Tier 3.  Specifically, sexual intimacy.

2.  Transpeople and the non-binary would love the government to deliver on Tier 4.  Specifically, self-esteem, respect by others.

3.  Probably everyone would like the government to deliver on Tier 5:  morality, creativity, spontaneity, problem solving, lack of prejudice, acceptance of facts.

FWIW, I wish Matlow didn't include "morality" under "safety".  That really doesn't help.

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

Mr. Magoo wrote:

3.  Probably everyone would like the government to deliver on Tier 5:  morality, creativity, spontaneity, problem solving, lack of prejudice, acceptance of facts.

That is what the real "populist" claims to be able to deliver. Personally I think that our institutions are not capable of accomplising that task no matter how you periodically shuffle the chairs in our parliaments.

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

TBH, I kind of scratched my head at "spontaneity".

But I think populists do try to deliver on morality, or it's to their peril.

Doug scored big with the whole walk-back of sex education.  I think he could have told voters "...and, I'm going to tax you $1000 and I'm not even going to tell you what for", and as long as he agreed that children shouldn't learn that masturbation doesn't have severe religious penalties or that homos are people too, he'd have done fine.

Pondering has, many times, claimed that the electorate primarily cares about "the economy".  I think they care about the afterlife more.  It's the only plausible way to explain why someone who with their spouse earns about $55K a year and lives paycheque to paycheque, would vote Conservative.

progressive17 progressive17's picture

Ken Burch wrote:

progressive17 wrote:

The populists are doing well because it serves you right! 

Who are you referring to by "you" there?  Nobody on this board is responsible for any of the decisions that have alienated voters from the NDP or other "center-left" parties.  If you want to say it serves the political class right, that's likely a fair observation.   But not people who are part of this thread.  What are you enraged at US about?  We weren't the ones encouraging the Left to de-emphasize class and economic equality.

You the talkers weren't. But the lurkers were.

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Quote:
You the talkers weren't. But the lurkers were.

I have no doubt that babble has plenty of lurkers.  Some times I'm thinking of them more than a babbler when I reply to that babbler.

But it's a bit rich to assume that those lurkers who we never hear from believe or support this or that.  By definition, they don't tell us what's on their minds.

Ken Burch Ken Burch's picture

progressive17 wrote:

Ken Burch wrote:

progressive17 wrote:

The populists are doing well because it serves you right! 

Who are you referring to by "you" there?  Nobody on this board is responsible for any of the decisions that have alienated voters from the NDP or other "center-left" parties.  If you want to say it serves the political class right, that's likely a fair observation.   But not people who are part of this thread.  What are you enraged at US about?  We weren't the ones encouraging the Left to de-emphasize class and economic equality.

You the talkers weren't. But the lurkers were.

Is it actually possible to TELL what the lurkers were calling for?  If they're just lurking, we have no way of knowing what they support of what they do in other situation, as far as I can tell.  

WWWTT

Ken Burch Smith And others

china has had many famines before in the past. But western propaganda makes damn sure to not let a good old fashioned wide spread famine go to waste!

https://monthlyreview.org/commentary/did-mao-really-kill-millions-in-the-great-leap-forward/

when I visited chairman Mao traditional home near the city of Changsha in Hunan province there was literally thousands of people there that day to pay their respects. Really easy to see through bullshit when you’re able to speak Mandarin in China 

but back on topic

i haven’t read anything yet in this thread that would suggest the term populist or whatever is anything like some kind of anomaly? If anything maybe the corporate media is trying to spin certain leaders in a light that can discredit them on a moments notice, all the time maintaining the status quo. 

progressive17 progressive17's picture

It is Schroedinger's lurker. You won't know if it is a capitalist sellout until you open the box, by which time it is dead.

Ken Burch Ken Burch's picture

WWWTT wrote:

Ken Burch Smith And others

china has had many famines before in the past. But western propaganda makes damn sure to not let a good old fashioned wide spread famine go to waste!

https://monthlyreview.org/commentary/did-mao-really-kill-millions-in-the-great-leap-forward/

when I visited chairman Mao traditional home near the city of Changsha in Hunan province there was literally thousands of people there that day to pay their respects. Really easy to see through bullshit when you’re able to speak Mandarin in China 

but back on topic

i haven’t read anything yet in this thread that would suggest the term populist or whatever is anything like some kind of anomaly? If anything maybe the corporate media is trying to spin certain leaders in a light that can discredit them on a moments notice, all the time maintaining the status quo. 

I wasn't talking about the Great Leap Forward, though.  It's more about the Cultural Revolution.  What possible need was there for what happened then?

6079_Smith_W

I was talking about the great leap forward, which in great part had to do with government policy. But we could just as easily talk about the cultural revolution. Or how about the Khmer rouge. Or the kim dynasty, or stalinism. Again, this is not just something that happens to western democracies.

Ken Burch Ken Burch's picture

6079_Smith_W wrote:
I was talking about the great leap forward, which in great part had to do with government policy. But as men said we could just as easily talk about the cultural revolution. Or how about the Khmer rouge. Or the kim dynasty, or stalinism. Again, this is not just something that happens to western democracies.

More to the point, there never HAD to be things like that in the process of constructing socialism, nor did what those methods produce ever actually bear any resemblance to what socialism was supposed to be-which, more than anything else was democratic control of the workplace, and over the wealth created by the workers and democratic and non-repressive equality in all aspects of life.  

6079_Smith_W

Yes, though it is no more a natural part of democracy. Yet it does occur in all systems.

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