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November 08, 2004


If your inbox is anything like mine, it's been filled with a flurry of relfections on the election.  Some of it has been funny, some bitter, some inspiring.  I want to share with you a couple of standout paragraphs from a longer email I've just received from Lisa Andrews, whose day job is organizing at Climate Solutions, but who recently returned from an "election vacation" in Florida.

Amid all the questions about this election, I want to tell you this: we are at the beginning, not the end....  I am reading a history of the right's construction of their movement, from the think tanks to the nurturing and investment in conservative idealogues whose careers have been consciously networked and advanced in the media, on K Street and in corporations.

I am not daunted by the hugeness of what they have done. I am incredibly relieved to understand it, because like so many others, I have felt it but couldn't name it. I felt that there was a reason that they lied with impunity, divided so successfully, and have begun to win more, and win more determinedly....  Like so many others I felt the iceberg below the surface, and felt its force. Now, I can see it. It is big, but we can be bigger.

We have the capacity and the moral strength to be so much more than they are. They will always have hate on their side, and lies and anger, but they can never have love and hope and the truth.

Every great victory, seemingly impossible victories that have been won in this country, was won by love: abolition of slavery, the women's vote, civil rights. Each of those was a triumph of the same magnitude that we now look for.  And now, the path is cleared, because of this Bush victory.

Until now, the Democratic party has been beholden to corporations, trying to please big business while placating the base with token environmental, social justice and economic justice moves. An impossible task. Small wonder they've had no moral clarity, no spiritual authority. They believed they had no choice because corporations provided 73% of all campaign donations.

It is a new world. Business now has little reason to continue to make even token donations to the party without power, especially in light of the Bush White House's habit of tracking Democratic donors and denying access to anyone who contributes any amount of money to Democrats, even their own major donors.  The democrats are left with the base that can and must be future of our country.

Though I have little faith that the democrats will provide the boldness, cunning or integrity that is required, I strongly believe in the rest of the progressive movement. We could not fail to thrive in the load of manure that this administration has dumped around its own ankles, even if we lacked talent, money, grassroots power, intelligence and passion. We lack none of those things. We will take this country back with such a vengeance that it will not be undone for a hundred years, though it may take a decade or more to get there.

The future is ours. Only fear can defeat us.

Posted by Jon Stahl on November 8, 2004 at 03:04 PM in Miscellany | Permalink


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