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Tweaking Level 1 of the 12 Point Platform

Here's the existing wording:

I. Stop the Bleeding

  1. A living wage
  2. Medicare for all
  3. Tax the rich

I wonder if we might toughen up compliance by adding some numbers in there. Something like:

I. Stop the Bleeding

  1. $15 an hour minimum wage
  2. Medicare for all
  3. 91% top rate for the 1%

I thought of trying to reframe "Medicare for all" as "Medicare for the 100%" but maybe not. Readers?

No votes yet


PunchnRun's picture
Submitted by PunchnRun on

Are you trying to produce a timeless document or one that is particularly pertinent and topical today? The reason I ask is that specifying $15.00 may seem a good pay rate today, but in five years it may be worth far less, Ignoring inflation is how we got to this point. It might be better to state what a living wage will pay for rather than state an absolute amount. And providing for a cost of living escalator fails when perceptions of what "living" is change.

Chances of this having impact in the next few months are slim, and I think you certainly want this to survive a couple of election cycles, so some more timeless language seems in order. Or perhaps some description of what one should be able to afford on this "living wage."

In that vein, if a living wage should allow one to support a family, does that include saving for putting children through college? $15.00 doesn't put you in game. Do you bump your demanded minimum wage? Better to recognize that some things ought to be available to all. Education, being an infrastructure investment, ought to be available based on desire and perhaps ability to benefit from it. We already admit to that principle but only to the extent of providing for free education up to grade 12. I think we know that this economy does not value the education that stops at grade 12.

I'd say that our society seems to hold to some assumptions that are obstacles to this philosophy. But now I digress into areas that have been hazardous to the health of others of similar mind.

Submitted by lambert on

I guess we trade immediate impact for the long haul. That said, the massive suckitude of $10.10 totally ticks me off.

danps's picture
Submitted by danps on

I thought the same thing. The amount for a living wage will change over time. Maybe the platform does too - annual updates, for instance.

As for tax the rich, similar thing: timeless or time stamped? I think timeless propagates better, but also leaves room for appropriation ("$10.10 is a living wage!"), so beware that.

Going back to the days of overhead projectors, maybe we present it in a transparency sheet model: First sheet is the abstraction (in, say, red):

Medicare for All
A living wage
Tax the rich

The sheet that layers on top of that adds detail (in, say, blue):

Medicare for All
A living wage ($15/hour)
Tax the rich (Eisenhower rates)

I'd frame that last one with reference to a previous time and not just as a number. It sends the message: we've done this before - it's not so radical!

Submitted by marym on

Elements for overlays for Medicare for All (to distinguish it from just extending current Medicare to everyone).

HR 676; comprehensive coverage; no premiums/co-pays/supplemental insurance

nihil obstet's picture
Submitted by nihil obstet on

Peace and land.
Every man a king (Share the wealth).
The four freedoms.

A vision, not an invitation to amateur wonkery.

nihil obstet's picture
Submitted by nihil obstet on

I rather like the metaphor of a ship of state: the citizens decide where the ship goes, but the politicians/public staff do the navigation. It would be different if we all met in the agora every day and hashed out policy, but we don't. Get to the details too quickly, and that becomes the arguing point, so that we never promote the vision. Everyone should have the means to a decent life; opponents will be happy to argue about exactly what the minimum wage ought to be because they can introduce all kinds of other details. Then you end up with things like the ACA addressing all the details each in isolation.

It's not that I care about whether amateurs devise slogans -- it's that I think that citizens should state their goals. It's not just propaganda; it's social blueprint.

Submitted by lambert on

... your slogan approach tells the caption of the ship "Head for America!" The 12 Points tell the caption "Head for New York at x knots on this course." Which is more useful?

PunchnRun's picture
Submitted by PunchnRun on

Overhead transparencies model; helps focus, and the progression of slides transitions from high level to high granularity. Reminds me of the old meeting agenda template: to ________ in a way that ___________ so that __________. The progression high altitude to low helps avoid the appropriation (so aptly stated, couldn't formulate that expression though something like it was lurking in my background) and lets you have a top level that remains timeless while implementation details (later slides) change with circumstances.