|WHAT THE DEMS NEED NOW IS ANARCHY, SWEET ANARCHY.|
|The Democratic Party is looking for a new leader, someone who can help the party climb back into the ring. On February 12,447 people you don't know who serve on the Democratic National Committee elected this leader -- former Democratic presidential|
candidate Howard Dean. And while he's not the puppet they'd hoped for, he does somewhat fit their profile: a white man who has managed to keep his nose clean throughout a semi-successful political career and can fundraise till the cows come home.
The general goal of the DNC in electing Dean was to bring the party back into relevance. The problem is that the Democratic Party has hit up this demographic before, and it hasn't proven to work yet in this millennium.
These 447 yay-hoos should have taken the opportunity to shake things up, and not just by choosing a "radical" candidate like Howard Dean.
What the Democratic party needs is an anarchist.
I know what you're thinking: Someone who rejects all forms of government would be LEAST likely to want to get involved in political parties, the most nauseating aspect of that which they reject. No doubt it would take some persuasion. But after seeing firsthand the leadership and organizing abilities of an anarchist organization a few weeks ago at President Bush's second inauguration, the time and energy of convincing an anarchist to take over the Democratic Party would be well worth it. The case can be made in a mere four points.
#1. Anarchists Get Results.
A blogger for VillageVoice.com wrote on Inauguration Day that there was a "vibe of hope and optimism" on the streets in D.C. While that phrase is obviously off the mark, considering the reason blocks upon blocks of people turned out was to mourn the midway point of a presidency, there definitely was a palpable feeling present -- a vibe of there's nothing left to lose -- and it was amazingly collective.
It was the kind of atmosphere that can only come from a massive demonstration. And it was all the more enjoyable because the protest had been pulled off by such an unlikely group -- an anti-government organization known as the Anarchist Resistance. Earlier in the day, a smattering of 50-60 women dressed in varying amounts of pink and 1950s secretary business attire gathered to proclaim their idle threat to "Fire Bush." Later in the afternoon, a contingent of radical LGBT youth put on a clever and scathing skit questioning the motives of the mainstream gay rights movement in their fight against and sometimes cooperation with Bush, drawing an audience of 30-35.
Neither of these groups managed to rustle up a large enough crowd to warrant attention from the police or, what would be better, the media. It was the anarchists' parade, from Logan Circle to McPherson Square, which did both, boasting thousands of anti-Bush participants and creating a noticeable stir. It turns out that anarchists, while they are very against the organizing of a government, are very much for the organizing of themselves. The Anarchist Resistance put up a Web site, set up a hotline, sent out mass text messages, passed out cards with information about legal support in the case of arrest and even had volunteer medics with makeshift fabric red crosses safety pinned to their backs roaming around the demonstration.
If the anarchists brought the Democratic Party back to power, think of the kind of meet-ups, fundraisers and inaugural balls they'd plan. These anarchists could make a killing at event planning or party promotion, for those hosts who aren't concerned about a guest limit.
#2. More Action, Less Talk.
When anarchists plan a protest, they don't mean necessarily mean chanting with signs. (Although that's part of it.) They mean storming barricades. Other organizations waste time and resources on bullshit intra-movement politics, rendering themselves less effective than they ultimately could be. There are fights over funding, fights over coalitions, fights over what leader gets to speak first at a protest event, fights over whose celebrity sponsor gets to hold how big of a sign in a march for which everyone's big ego wants to get credit.
And once these things are decided after countless intra-movement coalition meetings, then comes the harder question: What should the speakers say? What should be printed on the signs? What slogan should be spread across the celebrity's boobs? When it comes to these decisions, the women's movement over-analyzes, the gay movement over-politicizes and the black movement doesn't know whether to hire Bill Cosby or P. Diddy as their spokesman.
Anarchists don't get bogged down with messaging like these other political movements. They know there's no time. The Republicans have gotten good at slapping any title or phrase that passes the muster of a middle-American focus group onto a piece of legislation or culture war. The Democrats aren't good at the blatant mislabeling of their agenda, so they should give up and move on. This is another area in which liberals could take a cue from anarchists. When they're at loss for words, anarchists find that a middle finger usually gets things across.
#3. Anarchists Are More Hardcore Than You.
Perhaps because they don't believe in our government, anarchists also don't fear our jails. They see a sniper on top of a federal building, and instead of seeking cover, they yell, "Don't jump!" They listen to bands with names like "Queer Fist." They season their food with pepper spray. But let's put it to a test: would you stand feet away from dozens of police in riot gear, call them neo-nazis, and add in a "F*ck you!" just for kicks? No you would not, my friend. And by "you," I mean "I."
Fearlessness is exactly what the Democratic Party needs, not apologists like so-called peace candidate John "I voted for it before I voted against it" Kerry or pro-choice Hillary "I for one respect those who believe with all their heart and conscience that there are no circumstances under which abortion should be available" Clinton. Do you think an anarchist would be at all intimidated by Frist, Hastert or even President Bush himself? And while just the sight of Karl Rove makes children cry, if anyone can take him on, it's someone who considers a confrontational attitude a priority in their ideology.
#4. Anyone Can Get Behind Anarchy.
You can read over the bullet points of anarchy and still be confused about what anarchists stand for. That's kind of why it works. Most Democrats aren't going to be able to find a problem with the anarchists' platform, considering a lack of platform is really their whole schtick. Left-wing nut jobs to moderate blue dogs, reminiscent of that one time they got drunk and came this close to getting a tattoo, will be intrigued and happy to think that there might be a NEW playground bully on the Hill, and that bully will be on their side! The only Democrat who probably won't like the idea is Joe Lieberman, but he's not a real Democrat anyway.
It's starting to sound good, isn't it? Being united by an anarchist and feeling in step with a mass of democrats while out of step with The Establishment. An anarchist leading the party will enable the left-leaning part of the country to get back into politics, their sense of inconsequence replaced with a sense of badassness. The Democratic Party will experience the freedom and exhilaration that middle-American, middle-income, middle-aged citizens get when they break out and do something unexpected that shocks their family and co-workers. And out-of-step, rebellious, nonconformist anarchists will get a tingly feeling, too, out of this marriage of anarchy and democratic principles, when they are surrounded by their new army of like-minded rabble-rousers as far as the eye can see.
Ashley Glacel, a self-proclaimed expert on bullshit intra-movement politics, damns the man by updating her personal website during work hours.