Saturday, January 05, 2008

The Re-emergence of Populism

Populism has had kind of a funny, on-again-off-again relationship with the American people. It seems that it is a many-headed hydra, meaning different things to different people in the different times that it has arisen.

Speaking simply, Populism is defined as a political movement that appeals to "the people", positing a dichotomy between "the people" and the "others". Those others are the ones who seem to be amorphous, depending on the time and place of the Populist Movement.

That's why Huey Long's Populism can be so different from that of, say, George Wallace or that of Teddy Roosevelt.

What we've seen lately, starting in 2000 with the destructive -- yet normative -- campaign of Ralph Nader, is the rise of a new Populism.

And IMHO that is a good thing. It means that We The People are starting to wake from a long period of somnambulism and are seeing the need, the driving imperative, to take back our country.

And this time around, there's nary a trace of Populist Fascism in the works. We'll leave the fascism up to the Rethugs while we all form up here on The Left and take the necessary steps to reclaim our country.

So everyone, get involved, stay involved, and let your actions Speak Truth to Power.

1 Comment:

Unknown said...

Good post! Have you read any of David Sirota's pieces on populism? He did one recently about Huckabee and Edwards being Huey Long type populists. I can find a link for ya if you like ;)