What would the Democratic Party be today had Henry Wallace succeeded with his Progressive Party and they became the official third-party in America? And not just a third-party, but in actual competition with the Democratic and Republican parties. Unlike the Libertarian Party today, which is probably the largest third-party, but not much of a threat to either major party. And maybe had Teddy Roosevelt and Henry Wallace succeeded, the Progressive Democratic Socialists in America would have their own home. And not basically represent the Far-Left of the Democratic Party, but the actual mainstream of a major party.
Similar to the New Democratic Party in Canada, or as I call them the Social Democratic Party of Canada. Or even Progressive Democratic Party of Canada, with the Liberal Party there representing the Liberal Democratic Party in Canada. I’m a Liberal Democrat myself and I don’t use these terms to be insulting, but descriptive. The New Democratic Party in Canada which is a Democratic Socialist Party by their standards as well as ours. Is considered mainstream in Canada. Even though for the most part they’ve been the third-party. But they’ve always had considerable representation in the Federal Parliament, or at least recently they’ve had for the last twenty years or so.
Progressive Democratic President Harry Truman, tried to pass the Fair Deal in the 1940s. Which would be round two of the New Deal. Or round three after the New Deal and Great Society, if today’s Occupy Wall Street, or Coffee Party movement, the social democratic wing of the Democratic Party had their way. Making America’s version of the welfare state. Perhaps twice, or three times the size it is today and trying to make America look like Europe. With things like single payer health insurance, perhaps a national health care system with national hospitals. Universal pensions, universal public education, with the Federal Government taking a much larger role in funding our public schools. If not running them all together. Perhaps outlawing private schools. Universal higher education, so everyone can go to college that’s qualified for it. Perhaps nationalizing the banking system.
I mean the New Deal was considered radical in the 1930s and the Great Society was considered radical in the 1960s. But the Fair Deal, whether it came from Henry Wallace, or the modern Henry Wallace social democratic movement, would dwarf both agendas in America. Making our social insurance system a hell of a lot bigger than its today. And our taxes as hell of a lot higher than they are today. And this is just how it relates to economic policy and with a lot more regulations and taxes for our economy as well. Had Progressives, continued to push the idea of a Progressive Party which is what they would’ve called it when it started back in the Teddy Roosevelt era in 1912 and after that, maybe they’re a major political party today.
The Progressives had Henry Wallace in the 1940s and had they kept it going, Democratic Socialists would have their own party to call home today. And perhaps they would’ve left the Democratic Party. And Dennis Kucinich, Bernie Sanders, Ralph Nader, the Progressive Caucus and many others, would be in the Progressive Party today. Instead of representing the Far-Left of the Democratic Party today. But Franklin Roosevelt sort of co-opted parts of their agenda in the 1930s and the rest as they say is history.
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