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American Extremists goes viral

Well done!

The post itself is a long-winded version of the process dodge, but never mind that.

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malagodi's picture
Submitted by malagodi on

yea yea yea.

and all of that without ever suggesting that the most powerful forces constraining the Presidency are outside of - in a different division than - the governmental departments.

yea yea yea.

and all of that without ever suggesting that every government's #1 role is protecting the means of wealth production.

At what point does policy change become impossible without regime change?

Jessica Yogini's picture
Submitted by Jessica Yogini on

would vote overwhelmingly to make the financials pay the price for the mess they made but all the major parties offer only variations of "what the financial elites want is what they get".
The disconnect between the political systems of all the advanced economies and their people is stunning.

And the Jeopardy question is
"At what point does policy change become impossible without regime change?"

Valhalla's picture
Submitted by Valhalla on

and as he points out, the comments are really good. No one's buying Bernstein's baloney. Which is a far cry from the way comments were running at Salon during the glory days of The One.

lizpolaris's picture
Submitted by lizpolaris on

'went viral?' Truly, how is it that this fine cartoon, as opposed to others, can be declared to be viral? What criteria did Bernstein use in order to say this is true? I blame my age for not understanding what this is, after all this time on the internet.

danps's picture
Submitted by danps on

he writes

If you're an activist interested in effecting policy change, it certainly matters quite a bit where you should devote your own limited resources, and if they are to be effective your choices should be based on a good understanding of the system you're trying to affect.

But then he goes all Obama Obama Obama and descends into self-parody ("To be an effective activist, one must answer those questions as accurately as possible -- and there's simply no way to do so if you believe in fairy tales about the presidency, such as the idea that all policy outcomes should be attributed to the preferences of the man in the Oval Office.")

Activism is a two way street. Like-minded individuals organize to advocate for what matters to them, but the system Bernstein writes about isn't some mechanical device that runs under its own power - it's a bureaucracy run by people. And the second part of the equation is responsiveness to public sentiment.

DC has been overwhelmingly indifferent to (or contemptuous of) public opinion for years now. So lots of activists have turned their attention to state and local issues, and finding success there. Washington obviously can still have a huge impact on our lives, but we don't have the means to affect its course at the moment. So fuck 'em. Ignore the place and its people entirely.

The ones from there who are ostensibly in favor of liberal policies will benefit from this activism closer to home, but in a secondary way and not a primary one. Bernstein pays lip service to that in passing, but he clearly seems more interested in covering Washington and national issues, and doing so as a personality-driven soap opera.

Some of us have lost patience with that and are turning their efforts to initiatives that show more promise. That means turning our attention away from the capitol for now. That it also reduces the chances of seeing condescending lectures from the likes of Bernstein about How The World Works (see Klein, Ezra ["they are not the state of Ohio"]) is a nice little fringe benefit.

Jessica Yogini's picture
Submitted by Jessica Yogini on

attention and is being spread around by people with no connection with its creation, people beyond its normal range.
If you see something from American Extremist here, that is not viral. If you get a link to it from someone who normally does not read Corrente or VastLeft, then it has gone viral.
As far as I know, there is no official criteria for how wide and far something must be spread in order to be considered "viral".
"Viral" is also something of a Holy Grail for PR and advertising: to have people broadcasting your message for free and usually with greater credibility than if you spread it yourself, ideally spreading it in such a way that it does not even look like PR, advertising, or propaganda.

Submitted by lambert on

Out to Salon and then to Lawyers, Guns, and Money. And I get links in from DU.

Not universal, but definitely spreading.