Between the extremes, fertile ground for moderate politics

Call to ease partisan discord
is refreshing

I’ve enjoyed Diane Hessan’s op-eds all along. She has been very objective in her analysis. Her most recent piece really nails the basic problem (“It’s my (political) party and I’ll cry if I want to,” Opinion, Dec. 4). Her 400 subjects agree on a lot. As for me, I think her analysis of Republicans on the ground is solid. I’ll bet she was on point with Democrats too. It’s always made sense to me that people mostly wanted the same thing, and at least this poll agrees.

Sadly, it seems to me that the center has been deemed off-limits for everyone lately. Now we must pick a side and embrace every plank. Few of us can do that. I can’t. I want tougher immigration laws and enforcement, but think a wall is silly. For several reasons, I’m all for a single-payer health care system, but I opposed Obamacare because it solidified insurance companies’ grip on the market.

I think both parties need to ease up a bit on everything so that the center can emerge, because if it doesn’t, we’re either doomed or, well, we’re doomed.

Stephen R. Tarbell


Democrats have compromised
their values by moving toward center


After reading Diane Hessan’s “It’s my (political) party and I’ll cry if I want to,” I was left wondering what is so extreme about single-payer health care or, for that matter, preserving the natural beauty of our national parks and other wild lands. I’m also left wondering who benefits from “centrist” rhetoric, and just what “progress” will be achieved by moving “toward the center.”

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The Democracts in past years have compromised their values by moving more toward the so-called center.

For example, Hillary Clinton has yet to meet a war she doesn’t like, and both she and Barack Obama supported so-called free-trade agreements largely written by and favoring elite multinational corporations at the expense of local and national ordinances that ensure safe working conditions and protect air and water quality. Furthermore, President Clinton’s misnamed “welfare reform” and “three strikes and you’re out” policies discriminated against minorities that his wife referred to, in veiled terms, as “predators.”

Contrary to Hessan’s thesis, many people are behind Bernie Sanders’ proposals. Many want our natural treasures preserved for future generations to enjoy. There’s nothing “extreme” about these voices.

Dana Franchitto

South Wellfleet