a political and social term that refers to ideologies and movements favoring or advocating changes or reform, usually in a statist or egalitarian direction for economic policies (government management) and liberal direction for social policies (personal choice). Progressivism is often viewed in opposition to conservative ideologies.When leftists label their ideology as progressive, they imply that people who don't share that space on the spectrum (specifically conservatives) are somehow "regressive" or opposed to progress. This of course is nonsense - most modern political ideologies believe in progress, but they have different visions of what progress means.
Case in point - Toronto City Hall. "Progressive" Mayor David Miller announced on Friday that he would not seek a third term in 2010.
"Toronto is a progressive city, with progressive values," Mr. Miller said, appealing for citizens to stay on the same course once he leaves office. "The next election will be hard fought, but if those with progressive values come together behind a new champion, work hard and fight hard, you can elect that champion."
to which potential conservative rival John Tory responded:
"I don't know what a progressive candidate means in his lexicon, I just know that the city is looking for a different kind of government and better results from their government, and I hope they get that after the next election, whoever the mayor is."
Commenting in the National Post, Kelly McParland had this to say about the mayor's progressivism:
One of the most frustrating things about dealing with left-wingers is their imperviousness to reality.
They see what they want to see, believe what they want to believe. They declare themselves "progressives," consigning everyone else to the reactionary bin, "progress" meaning adherence to whatever their personal agenda dictates. Their faith in their own moral superiority is bulletproof. Logic need not apply. Because they're progressives, see?
Thus Toronto Mayor David Miller could announce yesterday he plans to step down at the next election, having achieved everything he set out to achieve.
What likely won't penetrate this shield of self-congratulation is the Toronto many Torontonians see. The Mayor's achievements have come at the price of ever-more precarious financial machinations. The budget has grown from $6.7-billion to $8.7-billion, accompanied by annual crises, shortfalls and pleas to Queen's Park to save the city yet again. Contingency reserves have been pilfered, fees and surcharges ratcheted up, a convoluted new trash collection system instituted, accompanied by monster bins and garbage control technicians skilled at discovering arcane reasons why this week's trash doesn't qualify for their attention.
McParland concludes: "I love the left. They're bulletproof."