Monday, August 04, 2014

Political parties

The prospects for our two major political parties are unpromising. In the case of the Republicans that is surely an understatement. The elections later this year will prove a Pyrrhic victory, if that, for the small gains the Republicans are likely to make will further retard the necessary task of reforming that strange organization.

In my view, things are inauspicious for the Democrats as well. Barring some event that is now impossible to predict, Hillary Clinton will be our next president. She has shown little interest in domestic affairs, where our most pressing problems lie. Instead, she will probably devote most of her energies to addressing foreign countries, seeking to meddle in their affairs - ostensibly for their own good. These efforts will not be of the old military-attack model - hard power - but soft power, through the invocation of the neo-Wilsonian doctrine of the “right to protect.” Most of these interventions will produce little positive effect, except further to deplete our resources of energy and treasure.

The Democrats are counting on shifting demography to ensure their hegemony. However, managing the various interest groups - unions, academics, LGBT people, ethnic groups, and so forth - will prove a continuing challenge because the aspirations of these groups do not coincide. At present, these conflicts are masked by the need to resist the Old Guard, still perceived, not incorrectly, as the oppressor. Once that need fades, though, the conflicts and disputes will become more overt. Pressure points are too numerous for me to cite in this posting - though I may return to this theme later.