The Watering Hole; Thursday March 19 2015; “The Most Dangerous Woman in America”

Earlier this week a link to “The Most Dangerous Woman in America” popped up in my email inbox. I immediately assumed ‘she’ had to be either Hillary Clinton or Elizabeth Warren, and was surprised to see, when I got to the link, that she was instead a woman I’d never before heard of, a woman by the name of Kshama Sawant, a Socialist who first sat on the Seattle Washington city council in January 2014 and is up for reelection this year. The article describes her as one who has, during her just over one year on the council,

“. . . helped push through a gradual raising of the minimum wage to $15 an hour in Seattle. She has expanded funding for social services and blocked, along with housing advocates, an attempt by the Seattle Housing Authority to allow a rent increase of up to 400 percent. She has successfully lobbied for city money to support tent encampments and is fighting for an excise tax on millionaires. And for this she has become the bête noire of the Establishment, especially the Democratic Party.

With a resumé filled with such populist accomplishments, she’s “become the bête noire of the . . . the Democratic Party”??? WTF?? The article continues:

The corporate powers, from Seattle’s mayor to the Chamber of Commerce and the area’s Democratic Party, are determined she be defeated, and these local corporate elites have the national elites behind them. This will be one of the most important elections in the country this year. It will pit a socialist, who refuses all corporate donations—not that she would get many—and who has fearlessly championed the rights of workingmen and workingwomen, rights that are being eviscerated by the corporate machine. The elites cannot let the Sawants of the world proliferate. Corporate power is throwing everything at its disposal—including sponsorship of a rival woman candidate of color—into this election in the city’s 3rd District.

So apparently it’s not only Republicans that are underneath the corporate thumb, but Democrats as well? How disgusting is THAT??

I followed the link to her website and found this, her own synopsis of her accomplishments:

Dear friends and neighbors,

We have officially completed a year in office and what a year it’s been!

• Thanks to our hard-fought 15 Now campaign, we passed the historic $15 minimum wage in Seattle.

• To crack down on rampant wage theft in our city, we won additional funding for the new Office of Labor Standards.

• Together with indigenous activists, we established Indigenous Peoples’ Day.

These and many other victories have shown what is possible when we build movements—we can overcome resistance from the political establishment and its corporate backers to improve ordinary people’s lives. We should celebrate our successes, and then build on them to win even bigger victories.

I hope you will join with me. Let’s take our city forward and make Seattle affordable—for all.

Solidarity!

Kshama Sawant

OK, NOW I get it! NOW I understand why even the Democrats want her out of there. It’s because her accomplishments and agenda are UN-AMERICAN (!) because they favor the worthless bums in the lower and middle classes and NOT the filthy rich of the upper crust! Wow, suddenly it all makes perfect sense. IT’S THE MONEY!😯

Back to the original article; its author (Chris Hedges) describes Sawant as one who “is as intense as she is articulate.” He continues,

Sawant, born in India, is a leader of the Socialist Alternative Party. She holds a doctorate in economics from North Carolina State University and before her election to the City Council was a professor at a community college. She knows that there will be no genuine reforms, let alone systemic change, without the building of radical mass movements and a viable third party.

“A viable third party” is undoubtedly Hedges’ key phrase. But is it possible? Speaking for myself, I had huge hopes that when Barack Obama was elected in 2008 together with a Democrat-controlled House and Senate, the chances were very good that we as a nation could finally overcome the middle class disaster wrought by decade after decade of “elite” control. I was wrong. There are far too many “elite” buggers on both sides of the aisle, and too, with a Supreme Court already over-packed with justices owned by those same “elites,” the consequences were predictable. The once loud and proud voice of ‘We the people’ is now under the firm control of the monied “elites,” and there it shall remain until the bums are tossed. It’s also clear that the only way we’ll ever accomplish same is through a mass movement that makes no claim to either the Republican or Democratic Party philosophy of money-based power. A third party? Maybe, but not really necessary. The real task is to elect people like Sawant to public office at all levels, including Congressional and Executive. In Sawant’s words,

“The idea that things have to get a lot worse to have some sort of awakening and bring about an alternative to this corrupt and defunct corporate political system is inaccurate. What we need is a big surge for an independent working-class political alternative while people are experiencing a sense of confidence, after decades of bitter defeat. . . .

“We have to provide a place for people looking for something different, especially the younger generation. Any presidential campaign cannot be run as an end in itself. That will dishearten people. People know what is going to happen in 2016. It is going to be Hillary Clinton or some Republican. Our campaign needs to be a launching pad for something bigger. It needs to be about building a mass movement, a viable radical alternative. This is what is happening in Greece and Spain.”

The concept of returning this nation’s government to “We the people” — to retrieve it from the oligarchic and fascist entities which have worked diligently since Roosevelt’s death in 1945 to further enrich and empower themselves at the nation’s expense — is a most intriguing concept. The possibility that a vibrant surge of the working class embedded in a Socialist movement could actually serve to revitalize the Constitution and a functional Democracy beggars the imagination.

Count me in. Anyone else?

OPEN THREAD

40 thoughts on “The Watering Hole; Thursday March 19 2015; “The Most Dangerous Woman in America”

  1. Pingback: “The Most Dangerous Woman in America” | Frugalchariot's Blog

    • Yay Neil! Though he never replied to my calling him out on Pi day for shoddy math… Still the coolest man alive (sorry Bill Nye)

    • If Charleston was to be nuked, the proof that it didn’t happen is every bit as clear and obvious as was the proof that Hiroshima and Nagasaki WERE nuked.

      Similarly: the proof that the questioner is nuts is the same as is the proof that Sick Rantorum is nuts, both of which are every bit as clear and obvious as is the proof that Obama is NOT nuts.

      QED

    • Ok Fat Boy, fook off then and take Ted “Stinkypants” Nugent with you and Insannity too all those who promise much and deliver nothing.

    • Just to remind everyone, the official Russian story is that a Ukrainian SU25 shot it down…..this report destroys the Russian alibi.

  2. Nice post Fru about the scary lady making things happen in my fair city. They are afraid of her – the US two-party system is rotten at its core, whether its Sawant or Howard Dean, corporate America will come for you to protect itself.

    Not sure about her comments on Greece, though, the new lads there have some odd alignments and friendships.

    • Thanks TtT. I’d never heard of Ms. Sawant till I read Hedges’ post the other day. I was impressed, then not surprised that she’d be seen as “dangerous,” then very surprised to learn that it was “Progressive” (yeah, right) Dems that wanted her out. But the more I dug, the closer I looked, the more I liked what I was seeing. The link to the Socialist Alternative Party was most enlightening — on their website’s front page they list their goals, each of which would make Scott Walker shit himself, each of which I agreed with completely. I’m guessing I must be (shhhh!) a Socialist at heart.

      As for Greece, I’m not terribly familiar with the details, but they have so far managed to realign a lot of European ‘thinking’ on some issues, esp. on money/Euro matters. Maybe I’ve read it incorrectly, but it sounds a lot like an evolving Greek ‘leftist’ politic has at least laid the groundwork for some progress. Guess we’ll have a better handle on it maybe a decade down the road. Time will tell.

      • The new Greek leftists seem to have taken the road, along with a number of EU far-right parties of being Useful Idiots for Vladimir Putin. “The enemy of my enemy, e.g. Angela Merkel’s control of the bailout, is my friend” kind of thing.

        Yes, if you think Kshama Sawant is talking sense… then you might be a raving pinko socialist (h/t Jeff Foxworthy)

    • That’s our TtT! And true to form you’ve chosen well to break the self-control phrase!

      • I think Obama should let the UN resolution about illegal settlements fly right on through (especially since the other 14 members *all* voted to approve)

        Now that would be a c**kpunch that would bring tears to Bibis eyes (and a huge wave of the ‘vapours’ and pearl-clutching on the right-hand side of Capitol Hill)

    • The “Complete Works” of Emily Dickinson typically lists some 1775 poems, give or take a few depending on who’s doing the compiling. Fascinating that oh, so MANY of them were written on whichever scrap of paper she had in front of her, be it napkin, envelope, whatever.

      I often wonder what she might have done if she’d had a keyboard. Probably tossed it on the woodpile, but maybe — well, y’ know.😉

      Genius is genius nonetheless, as she proved over and over and over again.

      Oh, and once someone — anyone — has read and absorbed her poetry, there are her letters — a book as thick as of her poetry. Hard to believe she was a recluse.

      My favorite of her “summations”:

      The earth has many keys,
      Where melody is not
      Is the unknown peninsula.
      Beauty is nature’s fact.

      But witness for her land,
      And witness for her sea,
      The cricket is her utmost
      Of elegy to me.

    • I’m sure he’ll do a fine job in the demolition phase. The renovation phase, I’m not so sure.

  3. No surprise since the democratic party sold out to Wall Street and the corporations during the Clinton years. I’m just surprised that the democratic leadership hasn’t put a leash on Elizabeth Warren yet. Unless of course she is all part of the illusion.

    Eventually, thanks to the broken and corrupt, bought and paid for two party political system, redistricting and of course Citizens United, in the future we will most likely see less and less true progressive or populist voices in local, county, state and federal governments.

  4. So Rachel Maddow had a segment about the delay on the vote to confirm Loretta Lynch as the next AG. Rachel pointed out the only other lengthy delay concerning the confirmation of an AG, which was Edwin Meese who was awash in questionable ethics and business dealings overseas.

    Maddow proclaimed that unlike Meese, Lynch’s record was impeccable. She had Wall Streets favorite senator Chuck Schumer on the program to defend Lynch. Funny who both Maddow and Schumer left out Lynch’s involvement and handling of HSBC case and the deal they received.

    I just don’t trust MSNBC anymore. Weeks ago Ed Schultz was beating the war drums against ISIS. Telling his viewers we need boots on the ground and likened the ISIS beheadings to the ovens used during the holocaust. Of course big Eddie was also for the Keystone Pipeline before he was against it. (After drawing heat from his viewers).

    • Lynch is Black and that makes the Repugnants head spin.
      Never mind she’s well suited for the job and should have been in long ago.

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