Clippings: “The Action We Need Now” (Aug. 25, 2018)

————————————–QUOTE OF THE DAY———————————————–

“Shall a man who has practiced corruption, and by that means procured
his appointment in the first instance, Be suffered to escape punishment
by repeating his guilt?”

-George Mason at the Constitutional Convention, on the applicability of
impeachment for election fraud (not just offenses committed in office)

(Thanks to Richard Adler for sharing this quote)
—————————————————————————————————————–

The Action We Need Now. There’s a medieval saying: “The Excellent is
the enemy of the Good” and it applies to our political challenge in the Resistance:

“The only democratic protection from the assault of authoritarian strongmen,
then, is to persuade the people to vote against them. But the most active members of
the Resistance are often surprisingly uninterested in helping opposition parties win. In
Poland, for example, the influential Committee to Protect Democracy explicitly eschews
any involvement in electoral politics. Similarly, in the United States, many members of
#TheResistance are so hostile to the Democratic party that they do not see it as a priority
to help the opposition win back Congress in 2018 or take the White House in 2020…

Even in circumstances where opposition parties are deeply flawed, this is the
wrong approach. In the end, the only safe bulwark against the populists is to keep them
far from the halls of power. Though it may be unfashionable for activists to campaign for
a mainstream party, joining a political movement that has a real hope of success at the
polls remains one of the best ways to stand up for democracy.”

From “Dystopian democracy—and how the brave fight back,” a review and
interview with Yascha Mounk, author of The People vs Democracy, in The Economist at:
https://www.economist.com/open-future/2018/08/21/dystopian-democracy-and-how-the-brave-fight-back

I agree with Mounk that hostility to the Democratic Party is the wrong approach,
but I personally believe he is far too pessimistic in characterizing the Resistance this way.

(Thanks to Jim Bowen for sharing this article with me)

Obviously, there are difference among Democrats. For more details here,
see “Progressives versus the establishment: An updated score” at:
https://www.brookings.edu/blog/fixgov/2018/08/09/progressives-versus-the-establishment-an-updated-score/?utm_campaign=Brookings%20Brief&utm_source=hs_email&utm_medium=email&utm_content=65102088

What Should Congress Do? Conservative analyst Max Boot has a blunt
answer to this question and has advice for voters in the next election. The voters, he
believes, must say to this Congress what Oliver Cromwell said to the Rump Parliament
in 1653:

“Ye are a factious crew, and enemies to all good government. . . . Ye are grown
intolerably odious to the whole nation. You were deputed here by the people
to get grievances redressed, are yourselves become the greatest grievance. . . .
Go, get you out! Make haste! . . . In the name of God, go!”

(From “Trump is an illegitimate president whose election is tainted by fraud” at:
https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/global-opinions/trump-is-now-an-illegitimate-president/2018/08/22/d1c9271c-a613-11e8-97ce-cc9042272f07_story.html?utm_term=.4cc6aa58ac72

See also E.J. Dionne’s comment on the real question: Can he survive?
See “Trump meets his real enemy (Article attached) at:
https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/can-trump-survive/2018/08/22/b453d91e-a629-11e8-8fac-12e98c13528d_story.html?utm_term=.dc7ff83dac2a