Moderate Progressive Politics

We would, though, like to suggest that in some key areas, the people who are defining themselves as the progressive wing of the Democratic Party — identified with Sens. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) — are embracing principles that are not genuinely progressive.

Specifically: They want to enlarge government entitlements and hand out the benefits as broadly as possible — free college, free health care, expanded Social Security — regardless of need or available resources. They emphasize redistribution over growth. And their ostensible protection of American workers leaves no room to consider the welfare of poor people elsewhere in the world. On all three counts, we think that the higher moral ground and the smarter policy lie elsewhere.

Take free college, a key plank of Mr. Sanders’s presidential campaign. Generally two arguments are offered for making such a benefit universal. One is political: If everyone gets a benefit, everyone will press Congress or state legislatures to keep funding it. The other is moral: This is something society should do. We don’t make the wealthy pay tuition for high school; why should college be any different?

Our answer — we would argue, the progressive answer — is that there are people in society with far greater needs than that upper-middle-class family in Fairfax County that would be relieved of its tuition burden at the College of William & Mary if Mr. Sanders got his wish. In an era of constrained resources, is the nation serious about helping the “left-behinds” in small-town America, whose plight President-elect Donald Trump supposedly championed? How about the mothers and children who remain trapped in multi-generational poverty in our biggest cities? Government programs should benefit those who most need the hand up.

The same is true of Social Security. You can expand benefits for everyone, as Ms. Warren favors. Prosperous retirees who live mostly off their well-padded 401(k)s will appreciate what to them will feel like a small bonus, if they notice it. But spreading wealth that way will make it harder to find the resources for the vulnerable elderly who truly depend on Social Security.


Folksonomies: politics liberal progressive

/education/graduate school/college (0.630509)
/law, govt and politics/legal issues/legislation (0.517375)
/law, govt and politics/government (0.465879)

Social Security (0.947239 (negative:-0.713624)), Moderate Progressive Politics (0.856199 (positive:0.458261)), Mr. Sanders (0.833469 (neutral:0.000000)), smarter policy lie (0.813579 (neutral:0.000000)), free health care (0.809335 (positive:0.564095)), higher moral ground (0.800262 (neutral:0.000000)), free college (0.797786 (positive:0.498782)), President-elect Donald Trump (0.795279 (neutral:0.000000)), wealthy pay tuition (0.786963 (neutral:0.000000)), Bernie Sanders (0.687929 (neutral:0.000000)), Democratic Party (0.640783 (neutral:0.000000)), key areas (0.638203 (neutral:0.000000)), progressive wing (0.637255 (neutral:0.000000)), Elizabeth Warren (0.635207 (neutral:0.000000)), government entitlements (0.630091 (positive:0.498782)), state legislatures (0.626293 (neutral:0.000000)), Prosperous retirees (0.624390 (positive:0.444492)), available resources (0.621911 (neutral:0.000000)), ostensible protection (0.619884 (negative:-0.631220)), American workers (0.619703 (negative:-0.631220)), small-town America (0.619388 (neutral:0.000000)), key plank (0.619196 (neutral:0.000000)), presidential campaign (0.616053 (neutral:0.000000)), poor people (0.614143 (negative:-0.631220)), tuition burden (0.612833 (neutral:0.000000)), multi-generational poverty (0.611514 (negative:-0.587091)), progressive answer (0.608033 (neutral:0.000000)), small bonus (0.607360 (positive:0.573447)), high school (0.606493 (neutral:0.000000)), greater needs (0.603606 (neutral:0.000000))

Bernie Sanders:Person (0.820110 (neutral:0.000000)), Social Security:FieldTerminology (0.682564 (negative:-0.713624)), Elizabeth Warren:Person (0.593406 (neutral:0.000000)), Democratic Party:Organization (0.433408 (neutral:0.000000)), Donald Trump:Person (0.387038 (neutral:0.000000)), Fairfax County:StateOrCounty (0.383871 (neutral:0.000000)), Congress:Organization (0.380117 (neutral:0.000000)), College of William:Organization (0.371321 (neutral:0.000000)), presidential campaign:FieldTerminology (0.368616 (neutral:0.000000)), President-elect:JobTitle (0.360163 (neutral:0.000000)), America:Country (0.356335 (neutral:0.000000)), Mary:Person (0.293928 (neutral:0.000000))

Poverty (0.974742): dbpedia | freebase | opencyc
Donald Trump (0.725845): website | dbpedia | freebase | opencyc | yago
Wealth (0.666369): dbpedia | freebase | opencyc
Want (0.572979): dbpedia | freebase
Ivana Trump (0.535237): website | dbpedia | freebase | opencyc | yago
United States (0.533805): website | dbpedia | ciaFactbook | freebase | opencyc | yago
Health care (0.523858): dbpedia | freebase | opencyc
The Progressive (0.520828): website | dbpedia | freebase | yago
Hand (0.517308): dbpedia
Fred Trump (0.513560): dbpedia | freebase | yago
Vermont (0.511616): website | dbpedia | freebase | opencyc | census | yago | geonames
Social security (0.510793): dbpedia | freebase | yago
Need (0.499504): dbpedia | freebase
New Democratic Party (0.496088): website | dbpedia | freebase | opencyc | yago
Argument (0.495432): dbpedia | freebase
Federal government of the United States (0.493837): website | dbpedia | freebase | opencyc
Progressive education (0.493240): dbpedia | freebase
Progressivism (0.492738): dbpedia | freebase | opencyc
Employee benefit (0.490579): dbpedia | freebase | opencyc
Fairfax County, Virginia (0.474599): geo | website | dbpedia | freebase | yago

 What does it mean to be progressive?
Periodicals>Newspaper Article:  Editorial Board, (November 14, 2016), What does it mean to be progressive?, Retrieved on 2016-12-27
  • Source Material []
  • Folksonomies: politics