Archive for the ‘Social Security’ Category

Democrats Believe….

Sunday, August 5th, 2018

How do Liberals Escape from Wing-Nut Hell

Wednesday, May 28th, 2014

gop-vs-americaThere is broad disappointment among [Liberals] progressives at the outcome of several recent antics of the radical right teabagger extreme. From the debt ceiling deal to the near collapse of the government. How do you deal with zealots that are hell bent on blowing up the entire economy if they don’t get their way? So how do [Liberals] progressives escape from this wing-nut hell?

The last several years, European politicians struggled to avoid default that would lead their economies to collapse. Those who tried austerity as a solution, suffered damaging blows to their economies and encountered wrath from it people. Yet, in the United States, radical right extremists Republicans manufactured the same kind of economic crisis and threatened to blow the entire economy to hell if they didn’t get their way. They have sinse engaged in an orgy of austerity that has damaged our economic growth and killed new job creation.

Did their tactics work? Idiots who are reckless have a huge advantage when dealing with rational foes that act responsibly.

President Obama and Democratic leadership did a valiant job avoiding the worst features of the deal, but in the end the negotiation was only about the size of the ransom paid and the damage of its costs to our economy.

Other historical situations involving both Republican and Democratic Presidents ended more rationally when faced with difficult economic solutions. The deficit reduction deal between Ronald Regan and Democrat House Speaker Tip O’Neal in 1984 was 82% new revenue and 18% cuts in expenditures. Clinton’s deals that lead to large surpluses in the 1990’s was 62% new taxes – mainly on the wealthy – and 38% cuts. This deal was 100% cuts. But today’s teabagger extremists don’t deal in rational behavior or use logic.

The general consensus among economists is that the impact of the cuts of the ongoing Sequester is damaging the already-weak economic recovery. The deal included no short-term stimulus and extreme cuts in R&D that is allowing China to gain on the US in areas of new energy technology advantages that will lead to future economic world dominance.

It is interesting to note that Congressional cuts in Embassy protection lead to weak embassy security that allowed extremists attacks on the Embassy resulting in four deaths at Benghazi. A situation that was clearly created by the radical teabagger congress that Republicans hypocrisy attempts to use as political weapon against Hillary Clinton.

There were some bright spots in the outcome of the war of economic attrition but traditional logic does not apply to the teabagger faithful. Clear danger lies ahead for progressives.

Progressives must maintain a determined, relentless campaign to prevent the teabagger controlled Congress from making cuts in Social Security, Medicaid and Medicare.

The Paul Ryan budget shows us exactly where the Republicans want to go. The Republican budget would eliminate Medicare and replace it with a failed system of vouchers for private insurance that raises the out of pocket health care expenses of senior citizens by $6,000 per year. They would raise the retirement age for Social Security, and turn Medicaid into block grants that would eliminate the guarantee of health care for the poor, and nursing home care for seniors and the disabled. And they would do it all to prevent the rich from having to contribute to deficit reduction.

We must continue to refocus the political conversation directly to the issue that the vast majority of Americans really care about: jobs and fair living wages.

Progressives must get out the vote because Elections matter. If given the opportunity, the extremists will destroy Obamacare, Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, and the EPA. They will increase the war against women’s rights; continue the assault on science, and legitimate hate and intolerance.

The recent battles to close the government and threats to implode the economy must serve as a warning — a wake up call. The [wing-nut] Republicans must be stopped. They will outsource what remains of our manufacturing jobs, repeal Obamacare, eliminate all regulations on Wall Street’s greed, destroy unions and allow the wealthy to plunder what is left of America’s middle class.

If one doubts this, one need look no future back than 2007 when they tried the same failed economic recipe for disaster that cast the nation into near economic ruin and the worse economic downturn since the Great Depression.

Renaissance of Liberalism?

Sunday, December 23rd, 2012

Poetic, in this greed filled age of conservatism; liberal issues dominated the 2012 election. With stunning results, in an election where pot is legal and gays are free to marry. Who would believe that a African American who campaigned to raise taxes on the rich would win his second election in America by a majority? This feat has not been accomplished by a Democrat since Franklin Roosevelt’s second election in 1936.

In many ways, the recent economic situation in America mirrored the events of the Great Depression. And in this election, only 25 percent of voters identified themselves as “liberal” in national exit polls. 35 percent proclaimed to be conservative while 41 percent called themselves moderates. There was a three percent point increase in those voters who called themselves liberal.

Demography and democracy advanced the progressive political ideas by a majority of voters. Before the election of Barack Obama, liberalism has been silent in America for several decades.

Abraham Lincoln’s push to erase the original southern sin of slavery from the land was a liberal achievement. Teddy Roosevelt’s embrace of the income tax was a liberal moment. Other liberal causes include the Women’s movement in 1920, Social Security entitlements in 1935, and the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Other events such as the creation of national parks, and laws against child labor, poisoning the environment, and the more recent move to give most Americans access to health care are liberal causes.

This brings us to the fascinating self-portrait of America at the genesis of the beginning of second term of the Obama era. A war is ongoing where the center-left majority wants to restore some equality to the growing imbalance between the very rich and the rest of us. If President Obama can successfully lead this coalition, he will be remembered among the greats.

For this to be successful, this will involve raising taxes on the top 2% and reforming entitlements enough to ensure their continued success and sustainability. Obama will have to make the Affordable Care Act “Obamacare” work, address climate change or immigration reform and in the process, he can restore liberalism to greatness.

For at least a generation’s time, liberals in this country have been afraid to call themselves liberal, calling themselves progressives. One can argue why the left was cast into exile but the demonization of liberals by the conservatives’ relentless vile smear campaigns seems to be the most obvious reason.

Liberalism, in the purest form, is about expanding opportunity and human rights, while embracing science and logic. Liberalism created the entitlement programs, after the Great Depression, to protect the poor, old and the majority of Americans from failed Republican policies. Liberalism created the American middle class.

Liberals of the 20th century have had some amazing successes — regulation of monopolistic greed driven trusts, modernization of strong public schools, and ensuring a safe food supply.

The New Deal’s lasting legacy, Social Security, and its counterpart of the 1960s, Medicare, have allowed millions of American to live out their lives in dignity. These programs are now under attack by modern day conservatives driven by a vile agenda of greed, but now these programs are considered sacred by Americans of all political affiliations. Even the mislead teabaggers will fight you over their social security while they chant and rant against socialism.

Conservatism, in its desire to destroy social programs and entitlements have now lost its way. They abandoned fiscal responsibility in exchange for the Bush doctrine. Recently they have resorted to attacking women, rejecting science, demonizing immigration reform, restricting personal freedom, and adopting voter suppression laws in order to steal elections and/or remain relevant.

If you believe in science, technology, climate change, finding a path to citizenship for millions of hard-working immigrants, support strong public education and the right to marry the person you love, there is no place for you in todays Republican Party. Moderate Republicans are not welcome!

The neo-con wing of the Republican Party started a pair of disastrous unfunded wars that all but bankrupted the country in the wild west Bush era. And for leaders, the party put forth crackpots and wing nuts in 2012. The Republican Party is on its way of assuring its place as a regional party unless it adopts reasonable change. Talk of civil war in the Republican Party is discussed by TV political analyst and fills the dreams of modern day progressives and Democrats everywhere.

This election has created some strong possibilities for restoring liberalism in America. Obama has the unique opportunity to shore up a weakened middle class, address climate change and make the promise of health care expansion work. For now, the majority of Americans have Obama’s back. And should he succeed, the Democrats could enjoy a growing majority in the future.