The Republicans hate the powerless, the Democrats hate the Republicans, unfortunately for the Democrats the Republicans can vote, so we get enormous turnout elections where not much happens.
Hatred apparently calls up an opposing counterforce of nearly perfect equality, certainly to within 10% by the election results I was watching last night. So hating the powerful is good ethics but bad tactics. We knew that.
The best way forward I can see is to concentrate on building local structure, and I don’t mean just “political” structure. Without real products, a political structure is just a bunch of people on Facebook talking about what they talked about the last time they met in a coffee shop.
The politics of hate simply can’t work for the left — the proof is right there in the numbers of last night. Every person who votes against perceived Nazism in the Trump administration brings with them one person who doesn’t perceive the Nazism and is a bit irked by the whole ordeal. I’m not saying the politics of hate are “wrong” or “right,” though I personally find them deeply distasteful and incredibly destructive. I’m saying, “Look at the numbers, this can’t work.” You can’t win a race based on “oh yeah at least I’m not the incumbent,” the pivot point of the system will nullify that.
Maybe when MLK said “Hate cannot drive out hate, only love can do that,” he was just giving some hard-won elections advice. Maybe it wasn’t a religious thing; maybe he was about to say “Look! I have the numbers! They printed them in the paper, in neat little columns!”
What do we do? The politics of “love,” I don’t even know what that was supposed to mean. I don’t know what the the opposite of hate is supposed to be. I think love is the natural process of human beings getting to know each other.
I do think there’s a different type of politics that has been abandoned. It’s the politics of “what’s in it for me.” Since we can’t make people angry to get our political results, and maybe we should never have been, we have to bribe them. What’s in it for me? What do I get out of y’all’s cool new political structure? I know you can’t make the orange man on TV go away, what do I get?