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Further down the thread you're urging me to consider context when judging politicians. You're failing to do so with Americans. It is a much more right wing society - I don't mean political views here, but in practice.

Who is more left wing, the person pushing for higher payments and 'reform' of a universal health care system, or the one pushing for expanding government provided health care in one dominated by the private sector. What about raising taxes on the wealthy in the name of fiscal responsibility and social justice, or lowering them in the name of economic efficiency. To take an example, I'd say that Clinton was to the left of Schroeder, even though by some objective measuring stick he wasn't.

In any case you're wrong about American liberals not believing in government services. There's unanimous support for universal health care as the top domestic priority, and most in would prefer single payer. That many of them are debating what would be possible in practice given the magnitude of the task of the wholesale restructuring one seventh of the economy, and what sort of compromises would be acceptable doesn't change that. We only number some twenty to thirty percent of the population - a significant number, but we're in a two party single member district system. Either we make deals with the moderates or we might as well give up.

You're also ignoring the extent to which the mainstream of American liberals has shifted left since 2000, and degree of preoccupation with poverty, insecurity, and inequality that hasn't been seen since Mondale's landslide loss.  

by MarekNYC on Thu Jan 11th, 2007 at 08:35:56 PM EST
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