I was discussing in chat the other night with a friend about congress and the Wall Street and how we could get real financial reform, among other things. One of the problems that I see with our current political mess is that the people on the left have a major communication problem. Not only do most not know how to communicate their ideas to the general populace, but far too often their message is hollow and hypocritical.
How can one preach about financial reform and how the uber rich do not pay enough tax or get obscene compensation or play fast and loose with the money they have when you yourself engage in or those activities or secretly (and sometimes not so secretly) wish you could do so yourself ?
Those that are struggling to make it are not going to listen to some ones ideas if these ideas come from people who drive over priced BMW or Mercedes Benz SUVs, live in expensive gated communities and pull in 6 figure salaries and justify to the nines their right to do so. And when they do speak, they talk at people rather than with them and come of as preachy, arrogant and self righteous. Instead of honest gut level expression.
How can anyone talk about having a fair and just economy and society when they are not willing to make the sacrifices necessary themselves to bring it about. You have to be willing to walk the walk before you earn the right to talk the talk.
The big news now of course is Egypt and the Middle East. I wonder how many on the left would be willing to take the risks and put out the effort and make the sacrifices the Egyptians have these last 12 or so days for what they say they want ? How many would be able to communicate their desires in an honest, gut level way instead of some intellectual BS that sounds good on the surface but says essentially nothing.
The left and the Democratic party was strong up through the 1960s because it consisted of working people, blue collar and white collar, that were able to express what they wanted and were willing to make the kind of commitments necessary to bring it about. And tried to the best of their ability to live what they believed. Most had some humility and lived modestly. Not like Wall Street Wannabees or republicans in waiting.