I recently asked, and have yet to receive an answer, as to what, or whom, exactly is "the left" in the United States today. So, I would like to know. Who, or what, is the American left?
Is it the traditional left - social democrats, socialists, and communists of various stripes?
Is it a more vaporous term, referring to anybody and everybody who is to the left, say, of Robert Byrd or Jim Webb or Steny Hoyer? Is Barbara Boxer "leftist"? Is Edward Kennedy? I had a friend of mine from Great Britain laugh at someone who called Kennedy a leftist, because in Britain he would be considered on the right-end of the Labor spectrum, less liberal than, say, Tony Blair or the current PM, Gordon Brown.
Who, or what, is the American left?
I consider myself liberal-leaning-leftist, although I hold certain ideas that would probably prompt some to move me much farther to the left. Yet, I hardly think of myself as either out of touch or out of the mainstream of American political thought. Indeed, I believe I am far more mainstream than, say, Rush Limbaugh or Sean Hannity, or even David Broder.