December 28, 2006

Edwards Speaks Truth to Power

True, like other national candidates under that have to contend with the potential of unwarranted corporate media feeding frenzies, Edward has to be cautious about what he says. However, unlike most candidates, he is the best at speaking truth to power.

Edwards is a populist in the finest tradition described best by Lawrence Goodwyn. This is a tradition of true participatory democracy, contrary to negative connotations placed on the word "populist" by some historians (the chairs of which were probably funded by plutocrats).

The policy underpinnings of populist movements rest on an understanding and appreciation of economic forces. It isn't a sterile view of economics as the center of the world, rather it views economics in its proper role relative to other social aspects of our world, family, self-respect independent of monetary standing, appreciation of natural wonders, artistic expression, genuine compassion. The spirit of this view is what Martin Luther King would later call a “sense of somebodiness.” It views economics as an engine that can enable social aspirations, not as an end in itself.

One of the greatest taboos in society today is to challenge corporate globalization, founded on neo-liberal, free market, Washington consensus economic theory. Edwards has taken a stand in opposition to corporate globalization. He knows it is a naive view of economics at best, and a cynical power grab of the worlds resources by a plutocracy at worst. Evidence suggests the later is true, though many half-informed peopled are enamored by the supposed theoretical underpinnings of free market fundamentalism, such as the notion of comparative advantage, introduced by David Ricardo.

By challenging this taboo subject head-on, Edwards is speaking truth to power. If for no other reason, Edwards deserves the distinction of being called a true leader.

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