Sure. The American Left, like the American Right, is a many-splendored thing. You fight among each other, and so do we.
But on both sides, there is a spectrum.
In one sense, furthest Left folks are the Leninists: the Progressive Labor Party, the Revolutionary Communist Party, the various Trotskyist groups, one of which has just done an ‘entry’ into the DSA. They’re actually old-fashioned Marxists who don’t despise their own working class. And, yes, they hate the Democratic Party and even Bernie. (Although one sect, the League for the Revolutionary Party, actually came out for voting for Biden.) But they have little direct influence. You have to read books in order to join them, and follow orders, which greatly limits their appeal to modern radical kids.
Then there are the anarchists or quasi-hemi-demi-anarchists of AntiFa and the Black Bloc. Many spoiled brats so far as I can see, who make up a strong argument for the return of conscription. Not bad at beating up Republican grandmothers, and very good for people like me who are working to get my side aroused and organized … but not a real threat in the long term.
Then there is the Democratic Socialists of America, who are also, in their leadership, old-fashioned Marxists … some of them from the Trotskyist tradition and quite anti-Stalinist. But they cannot resist the ‘identity politics’ which now characterizes the modern Left. And they have had spectacular growth in the last few years. I think they’re approaching 100 000 members. They recently took over the Nevada Democratic Party, causing a split there – the losers ran off with the treasury, apparently.
Their growth has attracted the attention of various Leninists, who are now boring from within. But the DSA leadership include some old bruisers who learned how to faction fight sixty years ago, from people who fought the Communist Party decades earlier, and who are not going to let some modern-day Trotskyites bust up their operation without a fight. Expect some fireworks there soon. [Those interested in sectariana need to Google ‘The French Turn’. Or go to Facebook and find ‘Leftist Trainspotters’. Or get on Louis Proyect’s Marxist email list. (He’s probably the best of the ‘orthodox’ but non-sectarian Marxist writers today. Understands the negative effects of anti-Fa’s antics, doesn’t want to dissolve into the Democratic Party, not for trying to build yet another Vanguard Party. And has a really interesting ‘comic book’ history of his time in the 1960s and 70s. And will tell you frankly why there must not be free elections in Cuba.]
The people who are actually destroying America are none of these. They’re the ones implementing Critical Race Theory thought contol in the schools and military, our core institutions. They would call themselves ‘progressives’.
I don’t actually know nearly as much about them as I’d like to. Just reading Truthout and Counterpunch and the Nation and similar voices of the more conscious ‘Progessives’ doesn’t give much of an insight (to me at least) to the thinking of the mainstream Progressive Left.
In particular, I don’t understand why the ‘deep state’ has so readily absorbed the Progessive outlook. I absolutely understood their alarm over Trump five years ago, and I shared it. But I thought that with Trump defeated, we would see a return to the Democratic Party of Obama and Bill Clinton. (Both are unfairly demonized on the Right. But if you think they were bad, you ain’t seen nuthin’ yet.)
But no. We see five star generals embracing Critical Race Theory. Soon we’ll have Marine rifle companies with transgendered platoon leaders, and a nice mix of nubile young women in the rifle squads to compensate. Should do wonders for unit cohesion.
So … although I sort of understand the rich tapestry of the Left, I don’t understand how the mainstream progressive identitarian Amerikkka-is-ugly-and-racist left has managed to seduce the ruling class and its agents.
And I’d like to. All proportions guarded, it’s like Lenin, in 1914, who was shocked when the Socialist International, having passed all sorts of nice resolutions over the preceding years about how the workers of their respective countries would never fight each other, etc… then turned on itself and became virulent patriots, with German Social Democrats bayonetting French SFIO members.
He eventually worked out an explanation which satisfied him: the working class was influenced by a ‘labor aristocracy’ which had been bought off by the proceeds of imperialism.
Anyway, if anyone can explain to me what has happened to America, I’d be very grateful.
This guy describes it well, but doesn’t know why it’s happening either: https://imprimis.hillsdale.edu/increasingly-unrecognizable-civilization/