maybe yes, maybe no

Steven Welzer
2 min readSep 17, 2022

https://www.nytimes.com/2022/09/17/us/american-democracy-threats.html

We hear quite a bit along the lines of: “American democracy has never faced a threat quite like the current one.”

Worst times. Most dangerous times.

MAGA proto-fascist?

Maybe.

But if you read commentary from earlier periods (like, going back to the beginnings of writing five thousand years ago) a case could be made that foreboding kvetching is endemic to human existence.

There are extreme phenomena. It’s hard to tell in real-time which noxious stuff will turn out to be extreme-extreme, really dangerous to life and limb.

Maybe MAGA. Maybe not.

* * * *

The above article says: “The causes of the threats to democracy are complex and debated among scholars.”

Here’s a simple one: The country is too big.

The article mentions: “The increasing concentration of Democratic voters into large metro areas.”

Those “blue” metro areas dominate economically and culturally. The “red” areas feel marginalized and are resentful.

If I was a red I would be advocating secession.

(Interesting factoid: For a while Kirk Sale had moved to South Carolina to try to talk up that idea among the states that will forever be disrespected under the current sorry setup. Unsurprisingly, he didn’t make an awful lot of headway. The real solution for them, secession and re-localization, is almost unthinkable within the context of our modern civilization. (That’s why bioregionalists talk about “new imaginaries.”) Unlikely that denizens of the fly-over states will suddenly go green. Unfortunately, they’ll just continue to wither and resent and pray.)

* * * *

The article quotes a professor: “When you have one side gearing up to say, ‘How do we stop the enemy from voting?’ that is dangerous to a democracy.”

Well, that’s what you get when there are effectively just “two sides.”

The United States is the only duopolistic democracy. Both duopolist parties suppress alternative parties.

* * * *

So: It’s too big. It’s too stuck in old ways. Break it up:

https://theanarchistlibrary.org/library/leopold-kohr-the-breakdown-of-nations

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Steven Welzer

The editor of Green Horizon Magazine, Steve has been a movement activist for many years (he was an original co-editor of DSA’s “Ecosocialist Review”).