Labels, as all customers uncover, are simply packaging. And reality in packaging is nearly a contradiction in phrases. The aim of packaging is to make a sale, not admit the reality.
The political group that calls itself “No Labels” is an ideal instance. Its title, recreation, and declare all are poll-driven and message-centered. The billionaire-funded group praises bipartisanship as an finish in itself. Now it’s toying with working a third-party candidate for president — peddling West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin as a “centrist,” working on a manifesto entitled, inevitably, “Frequent Sense.” The manifesto presents up a collection of poll-driven, rigorously crafted coverage positions, wrapped in fairly paper and designed to promote.
If there have been reality in packaging, “No Labels” would name itself “No Clue.” It appears perversely blind to the fact we face.
America faces extreme, simultaneous challenges — what lecturers name a “polycrisis.”
They’re urgent and obvious. Local weather change threatens existence itself, with extreme climate already savaging lives and communities. Excessive inequality corrupts elections and subverts first rate authorities. The million plus lives misplaced to COVID have uncovered our damaged public well being system. Our infrastructure is dangerously decrepit. Our well being care system is solely unaffordable. Systemic racism continues to mock the promise of equal justice below the regulation. We’re taking over each China and Russia, whereas preventing limitless wars attempting to police the world, a mission even our army, the most costly and highly effective on this planet, can’t afford.
We’ve got guided missiles however misguided management.
How does “No Labels’ Frequent Sense” tackle these challenges? Principally by ignoring them. On local weather change, they fear not concerning the excessive climate however concerning the value of oil, wanting an “all the above” vitality coverage that polls properly however totally fails to deal with the disaster.
On excessive inequality, they are saying nothing. On infrastructure, they reward Joe Biden’s infrastructure act (whereas preposterously attempting to take credit score for it), with out speaking about how it’s however a primary step to what’s wanted. On well being care, they provide conventional nostrums that gained’t offend insurance coverage corporations and Huge Pharma — and gained’t take us any nearer to inexpensive and complete well being look after all. Systemic racism and even the Supreme Court docket’s assault on civil rights goes unmentioned.
They embrace the unimaginable mission of policing the world, calling for much more cash for the army whereas demanding deficit reductions. That places Social Safety and Medicare on the chopping block, which they suggest however don’t admit, promising to not lower the advantages of these already or close to retirement. Fifty-five and below look out.
Their treatment will not be new concepts, however “bipartisanship.” Bipartisanship polls properly, however take into account coping with a Republican Celebration that overwhelmingly believes that the election in 2020 was stolen, that Donald Trump is harmless, that “wokeness” is the best risk to America, that taxes ought to by no means be raised, that we spend an excessive amount of on training and too little on the army, that voter suppression and political gerrymandering is an crucial, that weapons must be free and girls’s our bodies must be regulated.
We already endure from the overwhelming bipartisan help for giving extra money to the Pentagon, regardless of the very fact that it’s the biggest supply of waste, fraud and abuse within the federal authorities. There’s a bipartisan consensus to not transfer to Medicare for All, which is the one method for People to have good well being care they will afford. There’s bipartisan help for the “all the above” vitality coverage that’s contributing on to accelerating and catastrophic local weather change.
Their potential presidential candidate presents not new management however enterprise as regular.
Joe Manchin, who grew wealthy within the coal enterprise, primarily makes use of his Senate seat to guard subsidies to coal and massive oil, and to impede funding in renewable vitality. He embraced the filibuster to dam electoral reform to restrict huge cash in politics.
“Frequent sense”? No, simply extra political nonsense. “No Labels”? No, simply no clue and no method out. Billionaires have the cash to create a celebration. Pollsters and message gurus can work out find out how to package deal it. Venal politicians can check to see how they will revenue from it. However don’t fall for it. That is simply one other beltway bandit con job that the nation can’t afford.