The Opposite of Identity Politics
Many, if not most, people at c99p are fed up with the Identity Politics (IP) hijacking of the Democratic Party. Here is an article that succinctly lays out what is wrong with IP and what the worldview of the downwardly-mobile white working class (WWC) is:
The author begins by stating that which is obvious to all except corporate Democrats:
attempting to achieve a democratic majority by multiplying victim minorities is doomed to failure.
The bulk of the article is a statement of WWC values, goals, and attitudes. With only four paras to snip, I can't do this short article justice.
What the WWC does
the white working class (largely) keeps our power lines working, our buses running, our sewers functioning, our trucks delivering goods to market. They also empty our bedpans, take our X-rays, watch our children, and respond to our 911 calls. Without them, the American Dream that they are increasingly excluded from could not exist. But there is virtually no public depiction of their plight. Not that these workers want the pious solicitude offered to the poor. They don’t. They simply want to earn a decent life for themselves by working, as they used to be able to do.
How the WWC do their jobs
there are sharply divergent attitudes between professionals and the working class. ...Professionals value sophistication, “thinking outside the box,” and creativity, all of which are primary values for getting and keeping a job if you’re an order giver. But matters are quite different for order takers. Their lot is to fill rigid, highly supervised jobs that are monotonously repetitive. Medical technicians, factory workers, bus drivers, construction workers, truck drivers, orderlies, nurses, and cashiers cannot “follow their bliss”; they have to develop the stability and dependability to support their families. Furthermore, to adopt an attitude of creative risk-taking would be evidence of “having an attitude,” which just gets one fired. For the working class, the goal is developing the iron will to do a detested menial job for forty years without complaint. Self-fulfillment is simply irrelevant.
What the WWC values
While professionals move in an increasingly secular world, working class whites are proud of their Christian morality and deeply resent being depicted as ignorant homophobes...in working class communities being a stay-at-home wife is a sign of elevated status and a much sought after luxury, not evidence of a backward attitude towards sex roles...working class people resent professionals but not the rich. Becoming rich is assumed to be the result of hard work, whereas professional wealth is regarded as the product of dubious entitlement, and professionals themselves are seen as phony and snobbish. So working class people tend to dream of self-employment as the only route to wealth that doesn’t involve forfeiting one’s character.
The corpo-Dems IP strategy is blaming the victim
As anthropology professor David Harvey reminds us, it is “all too easy to blame the victims for what happens when capital leaves town.” But whatever workers’ flaws are taken to be, “it is preposterous to claim that these can account for the total devastation of industrial regions that had for generations been the backbone of capital accumulation.” For destruction on this scale we can only thank “the neo-liberal counter-revolution of the 1970s.”
While I think I have snipped all the major points, I encourage everyone to read the whole article. Without once mentioning it, the article is all about how IP has silenced class warfare. The article really does make one see the WWC's side of the argument without any leftist terminology at all. Especially the shit job situations they face. It reminds me to go back and read the late, great Joe Bageant again.