Finding Strategy: A Survey of Contemporary Contributions to Progressive Strategy (Excerpts)

Wolfgang Brauner and Charles Knight, PSSP Report #1, November 2006

Progressive Strategy Studies Project (PSSP)

"This report is motivated by our prior impression of an impoverished strategic discourse among contemporary progressives in America. The word ‘strategy’ is used frequently by progressives, and for the most part incorrectly. Many progressive writers and organizations use the term 'strategy' synonymously and interchangeably with ‘goals’ and ‘vision’ or simply with ‘policy’, often without addressing tactics and operations, much less resources and the likely response of adversaries. Other times ‘strategy’ is conflated with tactics or with plans of action. Tactics and plans are distinct subordinate aspects of a strategy, and pursuing them without a strategy will almost surely leave you well short of your goals."

"What strategies are there for moving effective progressive power from its present weak minority status in the social/political structures of America to a much more influential and consequential minority status (minimally) or to a lasting majority status (maximally)?"

"In the pages that follow strategies for winning elections (and often for winning Democratic Party power) are well-represented. This is not because the authors of this report are partial to these strategies, but rather because at this moment large numbers of people who call themselves progressives are focused on electoral politics, and a majority of them work within the Democratic Party . Ten years from now if right-wing conservatives are no longer dominant in Washington other sorts of strategic orientations are likely to come to the fore."