The Poorman's Contract on America vs. The House Democrats'
Let's start with the advance copy of the Democrats' Contract on America, which, in a daringly bold move, they might release earlier than expected. I'm tingling with excitement.
It can be summed up thusly: "Same shit, different election cycle".
1. "real security" for America through stronger investments in U.S. armed forces
Translation: we're not soft on defense, really! And we can prove it, by dumping even more billions of taxpayer dollars into the military-industrial complex.
2. benchmarks for determining when to bring troops home from Iraq
Translation: we're going to stay in Iraq for another 10 years, at least.
3. affordable health insurance for all Americans
Translation: if you have enogh money to afford Corporate Health Care, you'll be fine. If you don't, you're shit out of luck. No Universal Health Care for you.
4. energy independence in 10 years
5. an economic package that includes an increase in the minimum wage
Translation: we'll throw an extra 25 cent an hour to the poor slobs with no skills and to the teenagers.
6. budget restrictions to end deficit spending
Translation: we'll balance the budget by the time your grandchildren die.
7. universal college education through scholarships and grants
Translation: We have this totally new concept that says if you're in the top 5% of high school nerds you can get a scholarship. You don't think we're really going to pay for EVERYONE who wants to attend frat house keggers with tax money, do you?
8. funding for the No Child Left Behind act.
Translation: Bush has this totally awesome education program but it was poorly managed, kind of like the Occupation of Iraq. We'll manage it good.
There are a couple more points but I'm getting tired, as I'm sure you are, gentle reader.
Notably absent is any mention of protecting the collective American Uterus from the controlling hands of James Dobson. I guess that would be kind of indefensible after rubber-stamping not one but two Supreme Court Judges who will undoubtedly overturn Roe v. Wade.
Also gone is the concern for the Brown People of America. I guess we have to be EXTRA careful not to scare the Nebulous Beings of Centerland this time around.
Just remember, consistently Democratic-voting Women and Minorities: ignoring your vital concerns is the key to sweet, sweet victory and the furthering of our careers.
I have a new name for the Dems' "Let's sit on our hands" strategy: The Stranger. Think crappy car-theft movie, not French Existentialist classic.
The Poorman's Contract on [sic] America can be summed up thusly: When the Dems win in 06 and 08 they should be just as ruthless, demagogic and unfair as the Rethugs have been in the past 10 years.
1. Universal Health Care
The Poorman advocates this almost as a matter of pure demagoguery. A huge number of Americans will benefit directly and therefore will be Dem loyalists for ever.
But besides being a vote-getting no-brainer, Universal Health Care is also:
- The morally right thing to do. It is wrong for people to get sick and/or die because they can't afford health care in the World's richest country. It is wrong for people to get forced into bankruptcy because they got hit by an uninsured motorist while temporarily in between jobs.
- Cheaper for Society and for the Individual Citizen than Corporate Healthcare. When the US Government bargains with Pharmaceutical Corporations and Health Care Providers on behalf of ALL Americans, it has more leverage to negotiate lower costs than thousands of scattered rinky-dink HMO's negotiating individually. The increased amount Businesses and Individuals will have to pay in taxes will logically be much less than what they are paying now to the HMO's.
- Totally Doable. Um, hello? Every other industrialized nation in the World?
Bottom line: The Democrats, as they are today, will never enact Universal Healthcare. Not because, as might be reasonably implied from their conduct, they are too stupid to adopt hugely popular positions that would virtually guarantee them electoral victory (Like say, GTFO of Iraq, ASAP, for example). No, it's because HMO's and Pharmaceutical Corporations line their pockets with money. Cash is very motivational.
Impeachment is not nice. It's very aggressive and inevitably leads to strong emotions. The Sensitive Nebulous Beings of Centerland get totally freaked out by that partisan rancor. They start vibrating and burst into flames. Democrats definitely do not want this happening to the imaginary sensitive beings they have invented, and whose vote is the only one that counts in order to win elections. Or so they say.
The Poorman fails to realize that the Democratic Party's ENTIRE strategy is: "Vote for us, we're the party of Nice". Nice guy losers like Al Gore and John Kerry are not aberrations, they were selected and anointed by the Party leadership. They are the embodiment of Democratic strategy.
This is the clever strategy that forced the Congressional Democrats to sit on their hands while Bushco:
- murdered a couple of thousand US soldiers
- murdered tens of thousands of Iraqi civilians
- left hurricane victims to drown or dehydrate to death
- destroyed the US economy
...the list goes on
All this so the Democrats can say: "see, the Republicans are NOT NICE. WE are the nice ones". The guaranteed payoff is electoral triumph, you'll see.
This is just plain sleazy. And totally unnecessary if the Democrats would just adopt some basically decent positions on issues.
Der Gropenfuhrer is trying to do it right here in Galifuornia in a couple of weeks with a deceptively worded ballot initiative:
"Lissen to me now, Der Gropenfuhrer will not be redrawing the district lines himself, nein! It vill be a totally impartial group of judges! Vas is the problem? The current districts do not accurately represent the Vill of ze People, which is a Republican State Government for Galifuornia. The wrinkly alien creature that lives in my massive abdominals tells me the Vishes of ze People. Trust Der Gropenfuhrer. It worked for ze People of Mars, didn't it? "
Redistricting every 10 years based on the official US census makes sense. Anything else is a naked power grab. Also it's not nice. I agree with the Dems on this one.
4. Statehood for DC and Puerto Rico
Being a former resident of Chocolate City and a person who thoroughly enjoyed Carlito's Way, I'm all for it.
But the Democrats will never do this. Again, not because they're morons passing up a surefire electoral winner, but because CC and La Isla de el Encanto are full of of Dark People. The Sensitive Nebulous Beings of Centerland would get totally freaked out by the prospect of predominantly poor Dark People running wild in the hallowed halls of Congress.
Not that the Nebulous Beings are racist, they're just very sensitive, down-home, salt-of-the-earth folks. And apparently they're the only ones who vote. So the Dems have to do as they wish.
5. Restrictions on corporate lobbyists
A question for the Poorman and anyone else out there: do you know anyone who wouldn't like to have large piles of money handed to them?
The only way to eliminate corporate influence over US politics is to outlaw corporate contributions.
When the local ExxonMobil corporate officer hands piles of cash to whatever Nigerian Dictator is currently in charge, we call it corruption. It's the same damn thing in this country. We just call it a "contribution" instead of a "bribe".
We could hold a Survivor-style contest to determine the frontrunners in any given US election, then give them free and equal media time. The media and production companies could deduct 100% of the lost opportunity cost from their taxes or just donate it out of patriotic sentiment.
This is just what I could come up with on the spot. Americans are known for their ingenuity and creativity. We can git 'er done.
But the Congresscritters will never VOLUNTEER to give up piles of cash that come to them virtually free of cost, with the exception of a guilty conscience and millions of fucked-over US Citizens.
In case you haven't been keeping track, the Democrats will never adopt Poorman proposals 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5.