“Progressive” Means Never Having to Say You’re Sorry (part 2.)

Part 1.                    Part 2.                    Part 3. 

This will have to tide you over until I can quit spitting coffee out of my nose from Peduto’s silliness in the city paper.

I’m not sure what contemporary US politicians are attempting to say when they declare themselves to be “progressive”. The center has moved so far to the right, that today, Barack Obama would be bashing that pinko, Richard Nixon, as being “unpatriotic”.

What then is the basis for declaring oneself “progressive” and still function as a cog in Pittsburgh’s , old timey, 19th century, Democrat patronage machine? I’ve eliminated every other possibility, except that self-described “liberal” Bill Peduto is “progressive” because he is willing to accept kickbacks from outfits not controlled by his relatives. What else could it possibly mean?

Would Mr. Peduto “support the arts” if the economically disadvantaged areas of his district were not colonized by artists flush with subsidies, to make the neighborhoods more appealing to developers?

Is it “progressive” to support IMF and World Bank-style, neoliberalism, by invoking Act 47 and surrendering the City to a cadre of suburban lawyers?

There are also internet rumors of Peduto, alleged “antiwar credentials”, I’m not sure what that’s supposed to entail at theBill Peduto gets his ‘antiwar credentials’ City Council level, but he is a “Patriot Award” recipient.

But the realm of privacy and civil liberties is where Peduto proves he is qualified to play with the big boys. A hallmark of self-described “liberal” political activity is the exhibiting the courage to draft, and even vote for, the crucial “symbolic, non-binding resolutions” when the pressure is on. In 2004, Peduto bravely stood with other City Council members across the US, as well as junior high student governments, and passed a symbolic, non-binding resolution against the USA PATRIOT Act, essentially a legislative bumper sticker. In the real world, however, Peduto, was all too happy to lend his vote to install a federally-funded, citywide surveillance system. I’m sure that the “good old boys” wanted to use a local contractor to spy on us, but Rhode Island based Live Wave Inc. was probably the “progressive” choice. Fair trade, organic, carbon neutral, robotic spy cameras perhaps?

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