Wednesday, November 17, 2010
Wise advice for Democrats that they’ll never take, of course
by Larry Geller
If only there were a way to do it. Perhaps Obama will provide good enough reasons on his own, during the next two years that he has.
The above is but one of the suggestions in Smith’s article, What to do now (11/3/2010), which is a compendium of what Democrats or perhaps progressives might choose to do if they’re smart.
So forget it, right? They show few signs of being smart.
I don’t have much faith that Congress will suddenly turn over a new leaf. Quite the opposite. But some things need saying. Sam Smith has a pretty good list of what Dems need to do, and I recommend reading the complete article.
Cherry-picking just a few of many that I would endorse:
- Economic issues must be placed at the top of the list and solutions should be direct and easy to understand.
- Pick no more than a half dozen easily understood issues and fly them at the top of the pole. The right has been doing this for years - .e.g gay marriage and abortion - but the Democrats haven't seemed to notice. Key standard: pick programs that do the most for the most.
- Revive the labor movement. As demonstrated by the war on public schools and their teachers, Democrats - including liberals - have turned their backs on unions (except when they need them at election time). How often do you hear Democratic politicians pointing out facts about union workers such as
- Union workers earn 30% more than non union workers
- 80% of union workers have employer-provided health insurance while only 49% of non union workers do.
- 68% of union workers have defined benefit pensions while only 14% of non-union do
- Work for public campaign financing
- Push for instant runoff voting and laws that permit fusion politics, i.e. candidates able to run on two or more party lines. Fusion politics played a key role in building the strength of the Populist movement. It was so successful that the Republicans and Democrats managed to put an end to it in all but eight states.
Edit: Just saw this tweet:
And then this one:
The Paycheck Fairness Act, which would help provide equal pay for equal work, is supported by 84% of the populace, passed the House and is supported by a majority of Senators—and didn’t pass.