The kind of political strength that I believe the Left needs is mainly a matter of intellectual confidence, verbal assertiveness, and interpersonal courage. All those capacities are easier to develop and exert when a positive vision, and not merely negative critique, is in place to inspire people to action. Salon, in cooperation with the Roosevelt Institute, has begun a new series to explore how progressives can shape such a vision for the economy.
Meanwhile, George Monbiot at the Guardian, one of the more uncompromising and clear-eyed green writers on the web (with the exception of his endorsement of nuclear power), discusses how timid politeness on the Left enables the flourishing of conservative misinformation, paranoia, and disconnection from reality (i.e. insanity), all to the detriment of the United states and the world.