I was sitting at my desk minding my own business when this article popped up on my screen. I get alerts when new articles hit the feed and this one caught my eye. I am not a fan of the far-left positions that Ms. Ocasio-Cortez espouses as I believe that she has neither the knowledge nor the intellect to grasp properly the positions that she takes. However….
     This article was not only enlightening but illuminating for a number of reasons. First, whether you like her or not, Ms. Ocasio-Cortez, to this point, seems to be walking the walk, even if her walk is a bit crooked from my perspective. She certainly has a point of view and is rather loyal to it, to the point of challenging the traditional order of things in her own party. In a period where both parties are willing to tear at each other for pride and power, her stance is either brave or foolish.
     Her willingness to challenge Speaker Pelosi and the traditional order of things is either going to blow up in her face costing her the seat she so obviously covets to push her agenda, or she is igniting a larger internecine war in the Democratic Party, one that is going to have but two outcomes. First to embolden those that were secretly anti-Pelosi, anti-Old Guard, and anti-Traditional to add their voices to her siren call. They will further crack the already fissured foundation of the democratic political landscape, as President Trump has done to the Republicans.
     Second, it will backfire on her, galvanizing all of the traditionalist Democrats under Pelosi’s control to rid themselves of this public relations, cultish following that she’s cobbled together so that some sense of law and order, under the auspices of Nancy Pelosi will regain control. The Democratic car seems to be sliding on the black ice of Ocasio-Cortez-Cortez, and only time will tell of anyone will gain control of it or if it will spin into the brick wall of far-left progressivism.
     This smacks of the Gracchus brothers of Ancient Rome challenging the Senate establishment for the restructuring of property laws so as to benefit the poorer classes represented by the Tribunes, elected by those same classes to argue in their support. The net result was that the establishment won, and both Gracchus brothers were killed for their activism. This certainly does not mean to suggest that Ocasio-Cortez should or will be assassinated, but her political future might be fated so if she continues to buck the system.
     All of that aside, there is another, and I think bigger issue that the article contains. There is a  “required” contributions expectation from members of both sides of the aisle to the re-election coffers of their respective parties. While fundraising is an enormous undertaking for anyone in political office (the efficacy of that for a later article), the fact that members are required to contribute a certain amount reminds me of required union dues, whether one is a member or not. It used to be called “fair share”, but since the Janus case (Janus vs. AFSCME), that “fair share” provision was struck down. No longer are workers who are working under a union negotiated contract but not union members required to contribute dues (even though said dues were a lesser amount than a full member).
     The party contribution, while voluntary, really is not. It’s an expectation. Further, it is on a graduated scale as well, with the top earner, Nancy Pelosi in this case, required to contribute more, in excess of one million dollars (to date, she’s contributed ($900,000)
      Ocasio-Cortez-Cortez’ contribution is much less, but still “required”. She, thus far, has refused on the grounds that candidates not following the party line are refused funds to help them challenge an incumbent member. Meaning, that while Pelosi would like to have “her” people re-elected, Ocasio-Cortez would like a much more progressive person elected and is therefore withholding her contribution to the party in order to fund someone running against the Pelosi choice that is more to her liking which means more progressive than the Pelosi candidate. In essence, Ocasio-Cortez-Cortez is openly supporting a democratic challenger to a seat already occupied by a Democrat supported by the establishment.
     There is no question Speaker Pelosi is unhappy, and many in the party are calling on Ocasio-Cortez to do the right thing and pony up, all in the name of unity. Better to control the House, or Congress, as a whole than divide it and possibly lose it, no matter where one falls on the spectrum of politics.
     Whether you like her or not, Representative Ocasio-Cortez-Cortez is certainly a woman who stands by her convictions. She is more than willing to take on the establishment in her own party and do it her way. She is bolstered by the fact that Bernie Sanders is also willing to blow the entire thing up for his vision, which is more akin to Soviet style Communism than anything else. In fact, they are working together and supporting one another, Ocasio-Cortez endorsing Sanders and openly working for his election this coming fall.
     The idea that once elected one is to pony up to support the party seems to be beyond the pale, while also working to fundraise for one’s self. It is a double whammy of sorts and further underscores the fact that money is the overriding factor in our electoral process, and always will be. What is fascinating is that Ocasio-Cortez is unabashedly challenging everyone. She has her own path, her own set of beliefs, and no matter what, is going to stick by them, actually walking the walk versus being absorbed into the netherworld of party politics as usual. Like President Trump, she is doing things her way, and her way alone. She will not be cowed, she will not be bullied, and she will do what she thinks is right come what may.
     On this score, she is gaining admirers. It may be her independence  as much as her politics that  draws her supporters to her, much like the Gracchus brothers of Ancient Rome. They were beloved by those that rallied to their cause, much like those that support Representative Ocasio-Cortez. The supporters of the Gracchi were rabid and willing to battle for them, much like Ocasio-Cortez’ supporters are willing to do. Eventually, some of the supporters of the Gracchi died in their support. Let us hope things never veer off the road that much in our own time.
     Americans still love someone with an independent streak, someone willing to buck the system. Add to that a certain amount of charisma, and the masses will tend to look past the politics and more toward the person, being seduced by their song rather than their message. We’ve seen this before, and as long as he body politic chooses for itself, will see it again and again. It is certainly fascinating to watch.
Here is the link to the article:  Ocasio-Cortez article