It was NOT Frank Chopp who "gave" us a higher minimum wage indexed to inflation. It was a movement of unions, religious people, and community organizers who gathered tens of thousands of signatures in a state-wide initiative to the ballot. It passed by a vote of the people. (Response to @44).

With "supporters" like @44, Chopp doesn't need enemies.

I don't buy in to the "great man" theory of history. It's movements of many people that make change, a fact articulated by Sawant and Spear and many others.
Raku vs. Fnarf is one of the most hilarious displays Total Internet Crank Overload that have ever graced these fine digital pages. I can actually hear the gaskets blowing.

Each wielding equal measures of strident narcism, self-righteousness, and cluelessness. It's like a Portlandia sketch. Only better.
It's movements of many people that make change, a fact articulated by Sawant and Spear and many others.

I sincerely hope you appreciate the absurdity and irony of this sentence.

For fuck sake Sawant and Spear both have ridiculous campaign material that looks like it's ripped off of a fucking Che Guevara poster.

Christ. Talk about cults of personality.
Hey #95, there is no "binary".

The class between the working-class (the 99%) and the capitalist class is the petit-bourgeoisie.
The petit-bourgeoisie are the "lower", the numerically-larger, part of the 1% (in an industrially-'advanced' capitalist society like in the US).
The petit-bourgeoisie is the class which simultaneously both robs (employs workers) and is robbed (by the capitalists by way of commercial rents, mortgages, price-gouging and so on).

And the capitalists themselves are a tiny numerical minority within the 1%.

In answer to your specific questions:
A "full-time employees with company pension plans (they do still exist) coming from a fund which holds a range of investments including shares in publicly traded companies" is working-class.

A "small business owner who works 60+ hours a week in the shop she owns, who also employs five other people" is a member of the petit-bourgeois class.

The key is the unique and specific relationship to the means of production.

We can and will win over many of the petit-bourgeoisie to the workers' struggle for socialism.

We see a tiny glimpse of that already in the magnificent, largely-successful Seattle $15 minimum-wage fight: the growth of small-business-owners' support for $15Now, once they saw our seriousness, after Kshama Sawant proposed that they but not big business be granted a 3-year phase-in.

Dump the Elephant, Dump the Ass! Build a Party of the Working Class!

You're right, I don't think there's any doubt that Chopp has shifted his policy efforts to serve a wealthier constituency.

While the 43rd is unwaveringly deep blue on social issues, I think it's also glaringly obvious that the voters there have shifted to the center on economic issues-- particularly ones that might directly affect their own salaries and property values (all politics is local, and all that).

Dan Savage is probably the poster boy for the shift in the district-- screamingly lefty when it comes to personal liberty, but tipping into outright libertarianism when it comes to government economic policy.
@105 sorry robotslave, but you're wrong here.

The 43rd rejects every Tim Eyman initiative by among the highest margins in the state (1st or 2nd always). We voted for income tax at the highest rate in the state. We vote for levies, bonds, car tabs, property taxes.

And, we delivered for Ksahma Sawant in a huge way. She won overwhelmingly in large parts (the dense parts) of the 43rd (link posted below). And as a PCO in the 43rd, I can tell you that many of them ignored the endorsement of Conlin and voted for Sawant.…

It is not just on social issues, but economic ones as well.

And as far as social issues go, how do you explain the fact that Chopp has either been silent on or actively worked against one of the most important social issues of the day (drug policy/criminal justice reform)?

Again, I don't necessarily think Spear is the answer, but Chopp is clearly not carrying the mail.
@104: I'm impressed. I haven't heard anyone use the expression "petite-bourgeoisie" unironically in over thirty years.You quaint devotion to a 19th-century model of political economy is adorable. (Though you should check your spelling - la bourgeoisie is feminine so you need to make sure petite agrees with it in gender. Wouldn't want to look ignorant as well as outdated now, would you?)

As to your analysis... you are somehow squeezing your petite-bourgeoisie into the one percent? In the US, in 2012, the top 1% of income earners made over $384,000 per year. If you believe the average small business earner is making that kind of money, I suggest you get out more.

But please, continue to explain things to us. I do enjoy nostalgia, and you are the classic rock radio station of political economy.

@104 If I was some rightwinger troll intent on creating a sock-puppet account to discredit anything remotely positive about socialist philosophy — that sock-puppet would be identical to you.

Empty slogans. CHECK. Tedious buzzwords. CHECK. Rhetorical cudgels. CHECK. Lazy generalizations. CHECK. Strawman arguments. CHECK. Lack of nuance. CHECK. Stridency. CHECK.

You got it all, baby.
Re: rent control, it never ceases to amaze me how progressives are quick to slander economists, the majority of whom oppose rent control, as being "corporate lackies". Yet at the same time they laugh at right-wingers who ignore climate science in a similar fashion. Way to be intellectually honest.
Hey #51, your statement "Since Spear is not running as a Democrat (stupidly) ..." is really what's stupid, when you think of it.
The whole point of JESS SPEAR's, Kshama Sawant's, Socialist Alternative's and $15Now's campaigns is to build a workers' party and mass movements independent of the capitalists and their Democratic-Republican two-headed snake.

Wow #107, we'll try not to let your rich praise go to our heads!
Actually, the spelling "petit-bourgeoisie" is the one that has been in use in English since long before our birth.
Maybe because it's less prone to being misconstrued: "Petite bourgeoisie? Do you mean bourgeois types who are really petite in build? Petty bourgeoisie? But aren't all bourgeois petty, grasping, mercenary?"

Once again, a social class is a group of individuals having a specific and unique relationship to the means of production.
Regardless of how much, or how little, money they make.
A capitalist in Burkina Faso might make less than you, nevertheless they're a capitalist and you're a worker.

Here's a question for you: Are you voting for Jess Spear in August and November? Are you joining, funding, and advancing her campaign, making it your very own?

Hey #108, do you have examples for your assortment of asinine assertions? More importantly, answer the points raised -- if you don't, you're proving that you have no answer.

Dump the Elephant, Dump the Ass! Build a Party of the Working Class!
I support Jess Spear if only because of the fact that State Legislature needs to be shaken up. Chopp hasn't done that and Chopp won't do that because he's a Democrat. If you're a progressive that still has faith in the Democratic party, you're being fooled my friend. Beyond that, Chopp's clout in the Senate would only be relevant if he brought pork barrel money back to the district. Correct me if I'm wrong, but he hasn't done that.

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