The little thing: 73% of the vote is "far left?"
As a PS to that, we have an edition of our occasional feature, The Little Thing, which is when some passing reference, some little thing in a story that doesn't get comment, is what gets me.
It was in Swampland, a column about politics that's a regular feature of Time magazine, where reference was made to Bill de Blasio as having run a "far left" campaign for mayor of New York and he chose Bratton for police commissioner to be more "centrist."
Um, excuse me? He got over 73% of the vote! By any rational consideration, any rational sense of the meaning of the term, that campaign was the center, it did represent the center, it defined the center - and a fair part of the space to the right and left as well. How can 73% of the vote be the "far left?"
Is Time saying that the "far left" is that popular, at least in New York City? No, of course not. They are simply reflecting the conventional wisdom - the conventional stupidity - that the "center" is always and forever somewhere over on the right of where you are.
Unless you want to cut Social Security, you're "far left" - even though most Americans want to protect and even expand it.
Unless you want to cut Food Stamps, you're "far left" - even though most Americans are against that.
If you want to raise taxes on the richest, you're "far left" - even though most Americans want to do just that.
The list goes on and on. And now, applied to New York, if you want to crack down on stop-and-frisk, if you believe in court orders, if you don't want to worship at the altar of Wall Street, you are "far left" - even if you got over 73% of the vote.
Same as it ever was.