September 09, 2016

I take it all back about pushing Socialists ahead of Greens

In a recent post about ranked choice voting, I said that, if I had the option in Texas, I might vote for some Socialist party ahead of Greens.

Boy, was I wrong.

Socialist Party USA (the largest U.S. socialist party) has a party platform looks like Occupy Wall Street on Quaaludes, or flower children embedded in amber. Among the nuttier "wants"? Unilateral disarmament, and NOT just nukes — all weapons. Public referendums on every declaration of war. Soldiers' unions.

SIX weeks paid vacation, which goes beyond even the nice four-five weeks of Western Europe. Social Security at 55 with $25K/year minimum.

Others I disagree with? Repeal the Hatch Act? Wrong; I do NOT want federal employees having partisan involvement. Yes, this hurts the "little guy" federal employee, but, unless one would say "Hatch Act doesn't apply below GS-7," a unilateral repeal is stupid.

Given that other socialist parties are even more minimalist than SPUSA, which has only four statewide affiliates in the nation, and most assuredly does not have more local elected officials than Greens, since the party's website doesn't even list local officials it's gotten elected, that's minuscule indeed. And, I busted Patheos blogger Dan Ariel for fibbing about that on Twitter, after mentioning in a blog post that he had created a strawman of his anti-Green stances. If SPUSA is that small, it means smaller Socialist parties aren't at all in play.

As I said on that previous post, Dan, lemme know when Socialists of any party conduct a ballot access drive in Texas like Greens.

Also let me know when socialists of various non-Communist stripes can quit splitting, quit renaming, and form one stable, unified party.

As for Arel talking about how long Greens have had to become more of a force? Socialist Party USA stem from the old Socialist Party of Eugene Debs and Norman Thomas, which self-destructed in the 1940s by opposing entry to WWII, after in the 1930s wanting to ape the Communist Party by admitting Trotskyites.

Also contra that claim? The SPUSA has run a prez candidate every year since 1976. Greens only since 2004 (there was no national level Green Party in Nader's 2000 run.)

More hypocrisy on that, via Twitter:
Yet, on his blog, he said part of the reason he was leaving the Greens is they had no chance at winning.

What a douche.

And if he means SPUSA is willing to look beyond the ballot box for a revolution, count me out unless things get more dire indeed.

Oh, and, as busted on Reddit, it's anti-GMO, as much as Greens, and has a presidential candidate who may be almost as pandering as Stein on the issue. That's in the platform. Also in the platform is opposition to radiation of food. So, I guess it opposes Rio Star and Ruby Star grapefruit, beer barley, and other foods created by mutagenesis as well as opposing radiation for food preservation.

Ariel knew about that when he said he was no longer supporting the Green Party on anti-science grounds.

Instead, after creating a strawman, he deserts for a party one-tenth the size, at best.

He also has claimed Jill Stein is a climate change alarmist for claiming Florida could face sea rise of 9 feet by 2050. That's on the high side, but the person who first claimed that? Renowned climate scientist James Hansen.

Meanwhile, this:
The U.S. must immediately return to participation in international agreements, such as the Kyoto Protocol, limiting carbon emissions, and accept a major role in worldwide efforts to control global warming.

Is the SPUSA's ONLY statement on the subject. That line could have been written by Democrats. 

As for Arel's lie that Socialists (not just limited to SPUSA) have more elected officials than Greens? Wiki says SPUSA has ONE. That's it. Smaller Socialists have no more, I'm sure. And, Social Democrats USA is an endorsing movement, it's not a party. It doesn't count.

And, created other strawmen. I've now blocked him on Twitter, but he claimed, even if sarcastically, not literally, that I was a Green Party Manchurian Voter. I'll return the favor and call him an SPUSA agent provacateur deliberately trying to undercut Greens from semi-withing.

As for his actual claim? Not at all. Contra Arel, I knew about Veep Ajamu Baraka's false flag conspiracy theory already. (At least Arel didn't falsely call him a Holocaust denier.) And, per my ranked choice link, I reserve the right not to vote. I've done that before, in the 2000 Presidential election, the 2014 Texas gubernatorial election, and other races.

I'll give Arel credit for one thing. He led me to read SPUSA's platform and realize just how problematic it is.

So, I could either vote for a party with known science problems, along with a presidential candidate with known science problems and a Veep with conspiracy theory problems, or I could vote for another party with known science problems, known science problems far worse than the Greens in the "dismal science" of economics, and a foreign policy plank that's simply clueless.

And a party that's one-tenth the size.

Even if the Greens, like SPUSA as Arel has (grudgingly?) admitted, need cleanup (and the GP does), it's still at a better starting point.

And, a condescending hypocrite doing some of SPUSA's flag-waving is a turnoff.

Democratic Socialists of America (not an actual party, but a movement/organization), on the other hand, freely admit to approaching a push for a more socialist America in a more pragmatic fashion.

Unfortunately, it's so pragmatist that, other than Nader 2000, it apparently won't step beyond the Democratic fold.

(Update, Feb. 19, 2018: This all said, at the same time, I reject The North Star's definition of socialism. Fair chunks of its argument against the DSA, like on issues such as nationalism and policing, look like undigested, regurgitated SPUSA nonsense.)

So, in what is a case of lesser lesser evilism, it remains the Greens for me. For now. I'm still not quite ready to stop voting for President, but I'm getting shoved more and more in that direction.

Also, if Arel's comment about not caring about elections has any other meaning, along with calls for a revolution, I'm generally with Gandhi and King on nonviolence.

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