"If the Democrats can’t take the Hill now, they deserve to go the way of the Whigs... the Democrats’ message is murky. In the Senate, they decry the Mexican fence, then more than half of them vote for it. They label the Iraq war as a mistake, then vote $70 billion more for it. They object to Bush’s torture bill, yet flinch at a chance to block it in the Senate... It was that kind of profound indecision on a moral issue (slavery) that led to the demise of the Whigs before the Civil War."Indeed. I'm registered as an independent, but I end up voting democrat as the only viable opposition party against the republicans, who are by far the greater of two evils.
Maybe partisan politics is changing in America. In the time since I've been blogging and monitoring politics more closely (since about June 2004), I've seen a lot of dissatisfaction among democrats. The "Kerry betrayal" of 2004 (when Kerry conceded while there were thousands of absentee votes yet to be counted) clinched it for many of us: the democratic party, we were harshly reminded, could not be depended upon to represent the interests of Progressives - we who are proponents of human rights, civil rights, social justice, fiscal responsibility, and sensible national defense. Sure, they have done some good things, but they also put us in Korea and Vietnam and kept us there, and many of them seem to acquiesce to the repukes so often it's embarrasing.
Similarly, I have also been noting a lot of dissatisfaction among self-described "conservatives" for many months, maybe a couple of years, toward the republican party. True, most of them describe their problem by proclaiming that Bush is too liberal (I swear, they actually believe that). But nevertheless, stupid dissent is still dissent. Dissatisfaction seems to be the rule among party (ex)loyalists today.
There are lots of alternative political parties. The 21st century is still young... maybe we'll see a change in our lifetime. After all, it has happened before.