Quite an interesting article, words of truth spoken. It seems polarised politics on both sides is coming apart in some ways . . .
-read onThe American left is at a crossroads ? and it's history repeating
No matter how you look at it, it's clear that politics is changing in America ? the word 'crisis' has become a go-to description for many commentators.
Spectators have fixated on a war within the Republican Party, triggered by Donald Trump's presidency.
But as we dwell on Mr Trump and the divided conservatives, a parallel war is being waged on the left ? one with perhaps even more profound implications for the future of the nation.
The failed presidential bid of democratic socialist Bernie Sanders exposed a rift in the left, and at stake is nothing less than the future direction of the Democratic Party.
But history shows sitting at an existential crossroads is a familiar position for the left: for two centuries a concoction of ideological and social currents has repeatedly led to its rise and fall.
The socialist left
Throughout the 19th century, progressive causes, like the anti-slavery movement that helped trigger the Civil War, were driven by Christian radicals within the Republican Party.
In the post-Civil War period, the traditional left, inspired by the burgeoning socialist movements of Europe, and writers like Karl Marx and Robert Owens, was focused on the unity of the working class.
This style of progressive politics was kept in perpetual infancy by the bloody conflicts between unions and industrialists, who were often in league with the US state.
It was also hindered by the failure of the union movement to establish a labour party ? as had occurred in every other industrialising nation.
A socialist party, under the charismatic leadership of Eugene Debs, emerged in the early 1900s but had only mild success in an electoral environment hostile to third parties.
During the Great Depression of the 1930s, when the arteries of commerce were clogged with 5,000 bank failures, the simmering socialist currents within the American left came to boil.
The businesses that didn't fail entirely retrenched and contracted, leaving 15 million people unemployed.
A drought saw more than half a million farms lost, and hunger spread across the continent.
A suffering class of American workers, often under the leadership of the Communist Party and riddled with socialists, was unionised at unprecedented levels.
The trade union movement exploded, growing from 3 million members in 1933 to 15 million in 1945, demanding better wages and grievance procedures on the job.
This pressure found its political face in America's longest serving president, Franklin Roosevelt, and his New Deal program.
It was the beginning of the welfare state