You have to admit some liberals are strange. Some get up on a soap box and that turns into their whole universe. One of the oddest of these ducks is the process liberal. You can tell one by it's call, "I'm not interested in the outcome, I only want the process to be honest,". And so it's time to rip out another weak plank from the platform of The Code of Liberal Ethics before someone else steps on it and gets hurt.
This might pinch some toes but Fred Wertheimer is the great example of process liberalism. Some of you know that I've got a bone to pick with him over his teaming up with Newt Gingrich to get Jim Wright ousted, ending the only real opposition that the Reagan-Bush administration ever faced. In the most supreme political irony of our age, Fred and Newt sank him over a BOOK DEAL that by Gingrichean standards was chump change. Even if Wertheimer's motives were pure, in theory, this act marks him as the archetype process liberal due to it's pettiness, the enormous benefit it brought to Republicans and the damage it did to Democrats. You remember, Wright was replaced by the tragically ungifted Tom Foley who obsessed over marble floors in the elevators and lost the house to Newt Gingrich. I don't believe that was what Wertheimer wanted but it wasn't any surprise when it happened.
Process liberals bask in their own purity knowing that they are welcome on any talk show in the country and will seldom be asked a tough question or get pinned down on anything they say. They go on and answer all of the reverently posed questions about the latest sins of Democrats. They predictably bleat out their dismay over these venial sins which, they decree, must carry the penalty of eternal damnation. In the process they sell out the real progressive agenda that doesn't end in process, it ends in results, in making peoples' lives better.
They say "the ends don't justify the means," on the rare occasion someone questions their judgment. But that phrase was invented to counter people who wanted to use means that involved killing people and doing serious injury. Dictators' ends don't justify their means. But the left in the United States won't start doing that, no matter what the temptation. The left will use the untidy and imperfect process of government to defeat Republicans' lies and theft. If there is some minor naughtiness involved it's a small price to pay for child nutrition, healthcare, jobs creation, Social Security and other such benefits to humanity as the notably impure Democratic majorities of the past have produced. Remember the "post office scandal"? Looks penny ante after Bush II, doesn't it.
The sentimental attachment we have for these process liberals is rather strange itself since they haven't produced much and they've prevented much good. That the Republican media values them isn't any surprise, it should be an indictment against them. They wouldn't be asked on if Republicans didn't like the results.