Thursday, November 4, 2010

The Center Wrong

The Blue Dogs, as we progressives predicted, got what was coming to them. The center isn't always the right thing to do. It can in fact be disastrous.

Greg Sargent playing off of Joe Klein:

Klein's take is that the so-called "centrist" Blue Dog Dems suffered from an ideological aversion to government regulation and spending, which prevented them from recognizing that a bigger stimulus and stronger financial reg reform would have worked better in the real world. As a result, Klein notes, Dems lost big, with those very same Blue Dogs suffering heavy casualties in the process.

This is, of course, exactly what many liberals had been predicting would happen for at least a year. Yet Klein couldn't simply say he agreed with them or that they were right. Some hidden set of rules required that he also include a bit of lefty-bashing over some unspecified ideological transgressions that happened at some point.

That said, Klein really hit on the core point here. One of the mainstays of conventional punditry is that ideology is a sickness that only afflicts "extremes" on right and left. Here Klein is pointing out that liberals made the practical case, while centrists were the ones blinded by ideology. I'm glad he said it.


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