One of the biggest struggles those concerned with the state of politics in this country have is figuring out where exactly to direct their anger, and where to direct their energy. If you take some time to survey the left in America, you'll see quite a wide range of opinions on what everyone should be doing and whom they should be fighting.
At the time of publishing, there are for example, thousands of Americans gathered on grounds outside the Senate in D.C to protest Trump's latest iteration of his disastrous health care bill. The left is also pushing hard for investigations into Trump's ties to Russia and his painfully obvious attempts to obstruct justice when he fired James Comey. This all makes sense from a strategic point of view -- attack Republican vulnerabilities, and fight hard to preserve basic health care rights for everyone. There are of course many other issues to rally around, but when democracy and health care are under an all out assault, you must figure out where best to direct your forces.
There are however, elements of the hard left that are spending every ounce of their energies going to battle with the "Democratic Establishment" who supposedly lost the election to Donald Trump, and are apparently responsible for the sorry state of the left in America. One of the biggest players in this small, but incredibly vocal minority is Cenk Uygur who took to twitter to immediately blame "The Establishment" for losing the Georgia Special Election this week, and claiming only candidates he endorses can win:
Yes, you read that right: if Ossef -- who came incredibly close to unseating his Republican opponent in an extremely conservative state had been given the green light by Uygur and the "Justice Democrats" he would have won!
Where is Uygur's evidence for this? He has none of course, but as with everything he believes, as long as he says it loud enough to the Young Turk's 80 million Youtubers, it will become true. It is worth noting that Hillary Clinton thoroughly trounced Bernie Sanders in the Georgia primaries last year, winning in every county of the state bar one. But then facts generally don't sway Uygur, who is so dedicated to the cause that he rarely lets evidence or reality get in the way.
The hard left's analysis of liberalism in America is not without merit, and generally speaking I agree with much of it. I strongly supported Bernie Sanders in the 2016 election and felt his platform (and voting record) was better than Hillary Clinton's. It is true that the Democratic party has moved to the right over the past three decades, beginning with Bill Clinton and his "Third Way" politics. The Democrats have also largely abandoned unions, and have kowtowed to corporations almost as much as Republicans have, most nauseatingly on Wall St. These are important issues for sure, and ones that the party must grapple with particularly as the technology is about to replace millions of jobs in the coming years. While I want the same things as the hard left, above all else, I'm a realist and believe in doing what is possible, not preferable.
It seems to have escaped people like Uygur that there are infinitely more pressing issues at hand -- issues he seems to believe will magically disappear once Democrats fall inline behind his own strict definition of liberalism (but remember, no purity tests!). Rather than work towards unifying the Democratic Party and urging his rabid army of fans to direct their energy towards getting Trump out of office, they are so intensely focused on proving "The Establishment" wrong that they have apparently forgotten who they are ultimately fighting against, and what they are ultimately fighting for.
While Uygur and his ilk are busy slamming moderate Democrats, the Trump administration and the Republicans are busy gutting health care, passing giant tax cuts for the rich, dismantling public education, and ripping up international agreements to protect the environment. The Bernie left might want single payer health care, free college and a return to 1960's Democratic values, but they are living in a country that just elected a reality TV star who believes climate change is a hoax and all of America's problems stem from Mexican immigrants.
This isn't really about Uygur or The Young Turks so much, but about ideologues in general and the people who feed their militancy. We are living in unique and dangerous times, and those with an attachment to reality and most of all, sanity, need all the help they can get. Defeating Trumpism is going to require the Bernie Left and moderate Democrats working together. This is something Sanders himself has advocated and is continuing to work for, along with the likes of Keith Ellison and Elizabeth Warren. Uygur and his cohorts would do well to pay attention to the actions of the leaders they are supposedly supporting, rather than castigating other liberals they disagree with. It's a waste of time and only helps Trump and the Republicans keep winning.