i'm not an extreme leftist*. point me to ppl in america that are further to the left than i am that have the same political clout as, say, teabaggers or libertarians (hint: you can't because there aren't any)
Delhommeys right. people who think we have anything actually leftist in this country have never traveled to other countries. In the mid 90s I spent May First watching the Communists have a freaking giant parade down the main street in Frankfurt Germany.
Today we had like 25 protesters at Duke and they were all split on what they wanted to protest, then went back home to watch Dancing with the Stars.
No left? Geez a few minutes of reading this board disproves that theory.
the left lacks the political clout to influence policy. further, the democratic party would be considered a conservative party in most other developed nations. pretty much the only thing the left can do politically is mock the stupid fugs who think ppaca is socialism or that obama is at all interested in redistributing wealth, or take to the streets and get beaten by police/shot by counterrevolutionaries.
i can see how this can come as a shock to someone who is totally ignorant to the fact that barack obama is another in a long line of neoliberal presidents; a president who is called socialist because he has the audacity to not want to gut social services QUITE as much as republicans, though significantly more than any actual socialist ever would.
additionally, the bulk of the internet "left" are actually milquetoast liberals who will quickly tell you that they're "not some sort of socialist or something crazy" because they are in fact centrists who will always tolerate capitalism so long as overt discrimination isn't codified into law (because then they start feeling a little guilty about the systemic discrimination and exploitation that accompanies capitalist society)
here phil ochs explains the american "left":
there is hardly anything extremist about this. the "extremist left" was silenced decades ago