On Thursday, the Senate voted 89-10 to make 14 of the 16 provisions of the Patriot Act permanent (they were allegedly “temporary” when first passed). 35 of the 44 Democrats in the Senate voted for making the Patriot Act permanent. “Yes” voters included such liberals as Ted Kennedy, Barbara Boxer, Dianne Feinstein, Hillary Clinton, and Barack Obama.
How progressive are the nine Democrats who voted against the Patriot Act? Consider that last May 10 every single one of them voted to approve the Bush Administration’s request for funding for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Pathetic, aren’t they? Congressional Democrats aren’t even pretending to object to the neocon agenda any more. When even alleged liberals like Boxer and Kennedy vote for the freedom-hating Patriot Act, well, it’s time to replace all of them with those who will genuinely represent the people. The people clearly are opposed to the war, the spying, and the erosion of liberties while the multimillionaires in Congress are not. It’s a class thing.
The ruling class is moving sharply rightward while the people continue to move to the left. The pendulum is swinging leftwards again, a new period of radicalization has just started in the country.
In six months or a year, Democratic leadership will pretend they were for the changes all along and try to co-opt the movement. Remember this vote. Remember their complicity.
Be one of the tens of thousands protesting on March 18. Not only does it send a message (yes, they most certainly are listening), it’s fun and exhilarating to be with thousands of others marching for the same cause. Makes you feel better too, when you see how many of us there really are.