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put up or shut up - what the hell is your vision for the Democratic Party?

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welshTerrier2 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-08-05 11:51 AM
Original message
put up or shut up - what the hell is your vision for the Democratic Party?
Dean said this ... Edwards said that ... Kerry got a "D" ... Hannity blah blah blah ...

What the hell is our message? What the hell is your message? What the hell is the Democratic Party's message?

Here's your quiz for today ... please state and argue for what you consider to be the top 3 ISSUES for the Party and the top 3 VALUES ... make your case; don't just make a list ...

as a special treat, if we get a really good response today, tomorrow we can spend the whole day wasting our time talking about the earth-shattering Jackson trial or photoshopping some pictures of bush looking like a chimp ...

let's quit wasting time and start mapping out a clear vision for the Democratic Party ... if you think one already exists, fine ... post it here with your top 3 issues and your top 3 values ...

here's my little essay:

here are the key ISSUES i think the Party should be battling followed by the underlying VALUES the issues convey ...

ISSUES:
1. out of Iraq - with bush in office, the policy is insane ... it has failed and cannot succeed ... staying, regardless of how well-intentioned some may be, does not make sense with bush in power
2. our country is being run by corporations ... an article in today's Guardian (http://www.guardian.co.uk/climatechange/story/0,12374,1 ... ) shows that our government is being run for and by mega-corporations ...
3. our elections process is totally poisoned by big money and lacks integrity ...

VALUES:
1. central to our platform should be a call to renew our great American democracy ... the ideals on which this country was founded have been polluted by commercial interests ... we need to return the country to a system where the individual citizen is served by government; not a system where the largest corporations and their wealthiest shareholders pervert the national interest ...
2. we need to understand that our nation, and all nations, will be lifted up when we act like good global citizens ... we should build alliances to strengthen our ties to all nations; not just those who serve the interests of trans-national corporations ... our greatest strength is in the alliances we build; not our military power ... today the US is an exploiter; we should value friendship and cooperation instead ...
3. we need to recognize that unrestrained market capitalism should be valued less than ensuring a reasonable life for our citizens ... valuing the "free market" above all, as republicans have done, diminishes our entire culture ... we become two societies rather than one ... families are not able to sustain themselves no matter how hard they work ... our environment becomes polluted ... worker safety declines ... product safety declines ... retirement security declines ... health security declines ... when we let the greedy have more and more freedom to exploit others, our society declines ...

well, that's enough for starters ... perhaps Lakoff and his reframing movement has a case to be made ... but without a commitment to the right policies and the right values, the Democratic Party will remain in a coma ... i'm afraid they still don't see what needs to be done ... hopefully this thread can make a difference ...


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acmavm Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-08-05 11:54 AM
Response to Original message
1. Simply put: The Democratic Party. The party of truth, justice, and
liberty for all. We really DO care.
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welshTerrier2 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-08-05 11:57 AM
Response to Reply #1
2. the pledge of allegiance as a platform?
do you think that will be a sufficient and an effective message?
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WLKjr Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-08-05 12:18 PM
Response to Reply #1
5. we don't just talk about change, we make change happen
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Sir Jeffrey Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-08-05 12:12 PM
Response to Original message
3. Here's mine...
Number one issue: Universal Health Care...none of this "we're going to cover x number of kids with x number of dollars" crap. Poll after poll shows UHC is a winning issue that cuts across party lines. After all, "we all get sick".

Number two issue: End the war in Iraq. I have a friend/marine getting ready to go to Iraq this fall. I asked him what he thought it would take to get us home. He said "probably if the US went bankrupt, we could go home". It was chilling to hear this from a strong conservative marine getting ready to go into that clusterfuck. I asked him what he thought we could do aside from that. He said "Pull our troops out, send in highly trained operatives and let them infiltrate any terrorist groups. Then, instead of Fallujah massacres we'd see a building blow up one day that actually kills insurgents...or we'd see five or six insurgents die of food poisoning one night".

Number three issue: Um, one and two would be enough. No need to bog down two winning issues with a third minor one.

Values...shouldn't we just worry about the issues and let RWers be the party of moralistic hypocrisy? It's kind of hard for a coalition party like the Dems to impose any value system that would operate successfully on a national square. Our shining value would be the right to self-determination for all citizens and countries...I suppose we could frame our issues with this one value.

I vote for keeping shit as simple as possible. After all, many of those we're trying to reach are too dumb to see that W is a fucking evil bastard.
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Tommymac Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-08-05 12:16 PM
Response to Original message
4. Simple.
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Darkamber Donating Member (507 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-08-05 12:30 PM
Response to Original message
6. We are the party of the people..The true culture of Life
The GOP seems to rule via fear, but we offer much more.

Democrats are really concerned about the people...the working people, the poor people, the small business men, the elderly, the children of our nation.

We are concerned about Education and health care and providing help to small businesses and strengthening the middle class.

This nation is the greatest with a strong and large middle class. We are losing our middle class.

Democrats support raising people up and giving all a chance for the American dream.

Helping people is what is the true culture of life is about. Being Anti-abortion is not supporting a culture of life.

And if you ever run into a anti-abortion person, ask them flat out. Ok...abortion is illegal. How will enforce the law? Will young girls be given government issued birth cards when they must give birth by ex-date or they will be thrown into jail? Will you force a 13 year old rape victim to give birth to the child or throw her into jail? Will you provide the money to the social system that will be needed to provide support for all the unwanted children that children will give birth do? That isn't a culture of life. Don't let them change the code words.

Democrats believe in the true culture of life.

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Sgt. Baker Donating Member (186 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-08-05 01:00 PM
Response to Original message
7. my 3 things
1.Alternative fuels. We need to very serioulsy expand research and development for alternative renewable fuels. More efficient solar cells would be awesome. Maybe something that can generate energy from tides.

2.Immigration and jobs. We need to get more strict on illegal crossing of our borders. Offer work visa's etc... to those willing to go through the proper channels to work and live in the US. Help those who want to become citizens do so. And stop outsourcing jobs to other countries.

3.Environment. Protection of the environment is one of my most important things. Protecting our national forests from logging, mining, and other development including the building of roads because that is always the beginning of the downfall of the area. Kill the healthy forests initiative. It does nothing that it said it would. We were told they would clear the brush near residential areas but instead they are clearing brush from our national forests. Removing habitats for small animals, insects and fungi as well as robbing the ground of nutrients from the fallen rotting trees. It also allows the forest floor to get hotter than it normally would which actually helps start forest fires.


I would also like to say that I do not believe a complete instant pullout from Iraq would be good right now. As much as I would love to see it happen I believe it would only make things there worse. It would leave the interim government open to being overthrown by the insurgents. Possible civil war and worst case a new government under sharia. We do need to change our strategy there but it is not the time to completely pullout. We need to focus more on Iraqi social issues instead of constantly attacking those who get in the way. Making sure the citizens have basic utilities, food, water, and power. Our military needs to embrace humanitarian efforts instead of fighting and destroying everything they come across. Help create jobs so the country can become self sufficient.

Please don't alert my post for not fully supporting the pullout of troops. Reply and tell me why I am wrong for thinking the way I do. I can't learn unless someone explains it.

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welshTerrier2 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-08-05 01:26 PM
Response to Reply #7
12. no problem ...
first, i would just observe that you didn't specifically include a foreign policy plank ... that seems to be in line with what the Party is currently doing but i think it's a HUGE mistake ...

secondly, i would never "alert" on your perfectly reasonable post ... i disagree with you but you're more than entitled to your opinion ... you asked why i think you're wrong for opposing the instand pullout ... i'm glad you asked ...

i believe bush is very intentionally engineering the instability in Iraq ... he was told by many top military strategists BEFORE HE INVADED that he lacked sufficient troop strength to quell an expected post-invasion insurgency ... he has still been told that more troops were needed ... he was told that the only way to stabilize Iraq was to get the reconstruction projects going to make life better for the Iraqi people ... $9 billion of reconstruction funds are missing ... no reconstruction has taken place ... but somehow, we're able to secure just enough of Iraq to build the world's largest embassey for US diplomats and we're able to build 14 permanent (they prefer to call them "enduring") military bases ...

your goals and even your strategy MIGHT actually make things better in Iraq IF bush wasn't in power ... none of the things you called for have happened; none of the things you called for will happen ... the American people have had enough of this occupation and Democrats want to stay in Iraq and let bush continue with more of the same ... it just doesn't make any sense ... how much worse and how much longer are you willing to wait? if US troops are killed at higher rates would you call for withdrawal? if we're still in the same Vietnam-style quagmire in one year, five, ten will you call for withdrawal? when we exceed $300 billion, $500 billion, $1 trillion in budget outlays while our national deficit sky-rockets will you call for withdrawal ...

with the Democrats in power, perhaps one could make a legitimate argument that we have a "military role" to play in Iraq; with bush in power, it's just plain crazy ... Democrats need to stop supporting this occupation ... the US military presence is clearly making the situation much worse; not better ... can anyone deny that?

we have a huge obligation to help the Iraqi people; occupying their country will never succeed ... OUT NOW followed by UN and US backed humanitarian support is the only way ...
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Hell Hath No Fury Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-08-05 01:10 PM
Response to Original message
8. As a lifelong Democrat...
Edited on Wed Jun-08-05 01:11 PM by Hell Hath No Fury
I would say that the core three issues should be:

Civil Rights -- complete civil rights for all Americans (and world citizens)
Justice -- social, political and economic justice for all Americans (and world citizens)
Environment -- a clean, livable, sustainable environment for all Americans (and world citizens)

All the important issues effecting our country -- be it choice, gay rights, NAFTA, drug sentancing, war, corporate control, oil -- flow directly and naturally from those three points.

The Dems have to stop being their own worst enemy. They need to stand up proudly and declare clearly and succinctly what is right, what is just, and convince Americans why our approach is superior to the GOP's way of doing things.

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SemperEadem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-08-05 01:11 PM
Response to Original message
9. my answers
Edited on Wed Jun-08-05 01:13 PM by SemperEadem
Issues:

1. Regaining the White House, the Congress and/or the Senate. Nothing can be done until we are back in the majority with the votes to override vetos and thug uncooperation.

2. Ending our involvement in the Iraq war and sending our children back home to their families in one piece. The war is illegal, it wasn't sanctioned by the UN, there are no weapons of mass destruction and Hussein, while a menace, wasn't a part of al Qaida or Bin Laden's den of iniquitors. The perpetrators of 9/11 have still not been caught and there seems to be no interest by the * admin in catching them.

3. Throwing the book at those responsible for the voter fraud issues that had its head during the 2004 election. Every vote should count, and those involved in voter intimidation should be thrown in a federal pen for the rest of their natural born days for what they do is tantamount to treason against the constitution.


Values:

1. ALL people matter, no matter how much they've got in the bank or how much land they own, what color their skin is, where they were born, who they worship, who they love. If you dont' have to pay for another person's maintenence, then you have nothing to say about how they conduct their lives within the confines of the law.

2. Universal health care. If corporations are crying about having to insure its workers, they should be behind UHC. Let the corporate lobby turn on the insurance lobby and fight it out amongst themselves.

3. The church and the state are separate. Period. If that means this is a secular society, at least in a secular society, all can worship as they please. In a theocratic society, your religion is chosen for you, is sanctioned by the state and heresy can be allowed to rear its ugly head once again.
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MadHound Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-08-05 01:13 PM
Response to Original message
10. My vision is that the Democratic party will go the way of the Whigs
And the Greens take over as the representative liberal party in the nation. Call me bitter and cynical, but I'm fed up with corporate controlled Dems, and I honestly don't see any possible way that corporate lucre and corporate control can or will be extracted from the Democratic party.

The Greens on the other hand take no corporate cash, and their values and platform are much more in line with my vision.

Prove me wrong, please. I've worked hard, donated rafts of money, and been a lifelong Dem since I worked with the McGovern campaign when I was eleven. Yet the party has influenced to an ever enlarging degree by corporate lucre, and has as a consequence moved ever further rightward. Whereas my political stance was once considered fairly normal for the Dems, I'm now considered a left wing freak in a party that I can no longer call my own.

And I really see no hope for change within the Democratic party. Dean, despite his position and fight, will be stifled. Too much money and corporate influence is at stake, and any such signs of dissent will be quashed. This has been going on for decades now, and I've seen this pattern before. Dean will be kept around long enough to raise a buttload of cash, and then he will be kicked to the curb before '08 in order have a more corporate compliant leader take his place. Hell, if Dean keeps exhibiting this amount of spine, he'll probably be taken out before the end of the year. After all, these corporate controlled Dems are pretty spine adverse.

So go ahead, call me the enemy, traitor, what have you. But quite frankly I think that you folks are riding a sinking ship while the dance band is still playing. I would rather devote my energies to something more satisfying and productive, like building up a real peoples' party.
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RUMMYisFROSTED Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-08-05 09:35 PM
Response to Reply #10
16. So much fear of (real) change. It's so...so...so...
Republican.
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theboss Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-08-05 01:15 PM
Response to Original message
11. I miss the vision we used to have
1. We believe that all Americans can thrive and that the government's job is to provide them with the resources they need to achieve success. We believe that government has a legitimate role in protecting and preserving the welfare of its citizens.

2. We believe that America is the greatest force for good in the world and we need to work with our friends and allies around the world to protect liberty.

3. We believe in equal justice and equal protection under the law for all Americans regardless of race, creed, color, religion, or orientation.

4. We believe in protecting our environment in order to preserve the health and welfare of ourselves and our children.
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killbotfactory Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-08-05 01:31 PM
Response to Original message
13. my issues
1. Universal Health Care - Every other civilized nation has it, we should to. You don't have to pay the cops to come investigate when your a victim of a crime, it should be no different when you are a victim of a disease or illness.

2. Shut down Guantanamo - It's a mockery of justice. Either charge the prisoners or let them go. Our founding fathers started a revolution to stop this kind of injustice. Shut it down.

3. Exit Iraq - If you don't care about the oil, and you aren't going to stay there forever, stop building permanent bases and stop squating on the oil. The country will never accept being a US colony, and any misguided neocon moron who thinks otherwise should be punched in the face.

Values:

Fair trade - If country X can build a better widget than country Y, fine, but it should not be at the expense of human rights, political freedom, or the environment. Tariff's should be adjusted to counter balance any unfair advantage a country has in regards to the US. Part of the proceeds should go into a fund to help alleviate the costs of reform for any country that wishes to reform.

Environment - You shouldn't be unnaturally poisoned by the air you breath or the water you drink or the food you grow. Period.

Civil Liberties - Get the government out of your bedrooms. End the war on drugs, it is a vicious waste of money and is only around so that the government can scare you into taking away your civil liberties and allowing laws you otherwise would never tolerate, as well as being a major cause of violent crime.
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faithnotgreed Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-08-05 01:36 PM
Response to Original message
14. welshterrier2: i agree with your 3 top issues. sadly
Edited on Wed Jun-08-05 01:39 PM by faithnotgreed
we have to choose iraq and AGAIN people are losing jobs health coverage their lives and the government could care less how they treat the earth. people have to choose between food and medical care etc but we have no choice but direct resources to fight against this travesty of a war.

but i do agree. iraq/corporate control of our nation/bbv
maybe not in that order. but we need a plan to talk about to americans. a plan that conveys the depth of our character - not all the squabbling

have we learned nothing?
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Pepperbelly Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-08-05 09:16 PM
Response to Original message
15. I'm thinking that the lunch bucket issues are about to resonate...
Remember the 25K that GM is laying off? It is but a drop in the bucket. They have cooked the unemployment numbers to levels comensurate with pre-9/11 2001. But how much of that decrease is due to people actually getting jobs?

I know of no industries (by that, I mean the people who work within) that are smug about their future.

Lay that alongside the broken promises on pensions, the perpetually underfunded agency that is supposed to step in when these assholes default, the attempted wall street smash-and-grab of SS with Bush's wholehearted cooperation, and the HUGE federal debt that grows and grows and grows ...

I think the lunch bucket can be pushed.
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RUMMYisFROSTED Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-08-05 09:44 PM
Response to Original message
17. Somesuch:
1. Universal Health Care.
2. Free Education.
3. Corporations cease to be "people."


(The issues will take care of the values, I think)
1. Equal Rights, period.
2. Protection for the poor and disadvantaged.
3. Your body, your choice.


The Golden Rule.
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LuPeRcALiO Donating Member (587 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-08-05 09:46 PM
Response to Original message
18. Top 3 issues: 1) SS + UHC; 2) Environment / Alternative fuels; 3) Jobs
Values:

1) SS + Universal Health Care: guarantee decent health and retirement for every US resident;

2) Environment / Alternative fuels: end ruinous dependence on foreign oil, sever ties to Saudi Arabia and withdraw from Iraq and all other ME misadventures;

3) Jobs: do whatever it takes to stop hemorrhaging jobs overseas.
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Mich Otter Donating Member (887 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-08-05 09:50 PM
Response to Original message
19. This is some of what I want...
I posted this in another message but, it sure applies here:

--We need a national health care system to provide insurance for all Americans. We are getting sicker in this country from all the pollution and the working conditions we have to put up with.
--We need an education system that covers everybody as far they can go with their education. Many people, such as Bill Gates for instance, are able to learn enough about a subject to develop new technologies and create new jobs.
--America ought to be setting the standards for how to treat people right. We ought to never face being ashamed of how our military and government treat people. We need government officials who are required to disclose what they are up to, except in those cases where security is honestly involved.
--We have a lot of improvement to be made with child care, providing for our seniors, establishing public transit, getting our judicial system to function honestly, creating jobs, insuring our food supplies are safe, getting the best quality done on our airplane repairs, getting quality done on our roads, bridges and buildings.
--The financial institutions and corporations in America need to be closely regulated to protect our investments in them. Many communities are providing tax breaks for companies that may go belly-up due to internal fraudulent practices.
--Any consenting adults, (or turtles, if they can give consent), ought to be welcomed to marry.

This is some of what I want politicians to speak to and act on to get my support and vote. I sure haven't seen it so far.
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tinfoilinfor2005 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-08-05 09:50 PM
Response to Original message
20. America: Of the People and For the People Once Again.
Back to the basics is the only way this nation can survive.
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Lexingtonian Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-08-05 09:54 PM
Response to Original message
21. Democrats....
Edited on Wed Jun-08-05 09:56 PM by Lexingtonian
the people who will enforce your 14th Amendment rights.

Against the Christian Wrong.
Against overreaching Administrations.
Against corporate greed.
Against real terrorists.
For the falsely accused.
For those wrongfully discriminated against.
For those cheated by their superiors.
For those who hate being a colonial underclass.

Democrats. The Party that abides by the Constitution.

Democrats. Government of the People by the People, for the People.
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Hidden Stillness Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jun-09-05 02:35 PM
Response to Original message
22. A General Kind of Statement of the Overwhelming Problem
I think rather than doing a Top 3, I would just combine it, as the total situation of domestic-global economy/corporate takeover of other processes/redistribution of wealth to the rich/sinking standard of living/government abdication of responsibility to its people, etc. I think it has to be explained together, or people will not get how threatening this all is. To make it coherent, it would be told more as a generality, and tied together as a theme, keeping in mind that people are already living this horrible life. Described, not "framed" and manipulated. If you have ever read a transcript of a Roosevelt "Fireside Chat," you will get something of an idea; those things, which were noted for being very friendly, warm, low-key, and casual, were actually hugely informative and well-explained. You can really understand an issue by reading one--very specific, yet told like a good story. The Roosevelts, after all, WANTED people to be educated, and believed they already were. Maybe told this way:


Somewhere along the line, the Democratic Party lost itself, lost its true meaning by trying to keep up with Republican corporate fund-raising, because if we hadn't, we would always lose. The problem, as we all know now, is that those corporate donors are Republicans by nature, they are on the same side, and they actually make a united enemy to everything we need and want, and all the help people need. When the richest capitalists and the whole investor-class are on the same team and all fighting against what the people of this country need, then there is disaster, and this is actually not a free country anymore. You already know that, by suffering it; the only hopeful news is that we official Democrats finally know it too. Last year and this, most of our donations were small amounts from individual people, not corporations. Now, at last, we can cut the strings they always attached to every single donation they ever made to anybody, and fight them.

The economy only prospers for everybody when Democrats are in charge, basing the whole operation on the needs and experiences of the middle class, which then helps the poor; they are, after all, only one paycheck away. There are enough Government programs to help with the problems and even tragedies of life--loss of a job and its income, injury on the job and negligence of your employer, which you won't have to face alone if there laws and Government agencies fighting for and with you, medical bills you can't pay, discrimination at work and the denial of a job, home, bank loan or anything else you actually qualified for, but were denied. Where do you turn for help, when there is no government? Now you turn to the Government, and find only more capitalists and oil executives.

Every interest the corporation has is against what democracy is, and against even the people that corporation hires or serves as customers. They want to pay the least amount of tax, needed to make a civilized country run, the lowest wages to its own workers, deliberately forcing them into poverty, then leaving it to the government to make up for the shortfall, pollute and leave it to all of us to clean it up, and as we all know now, are actually traitors to their own country--in a heartbeat--as they pick up and move all operations anywhere in the world on the chance of getting slave labor; with no more "Let's Stick Together" allegiance to this country than al Queda has--but with no consequences. After all, they claim to be hunting bin Laden, but who is hunting the Bushs, bin Ladens corporate partners?

As a matter of fact, when was the last time the entire Bush Administration or the Republican Party even addressed the problems of the American people, our own country--do they even live here? What are they doing--what, of any kind of problem, have they solved? They have absolutely no interest whatsoever in the non-rich people of any country, not even us. When they do take any approach to anything, they do what a corporation would do: everything is secret, then when we want answers, they launch a sales campaign, with hired mouthpieces; all they do is lower taxes on rich people and rip apart government programs and laws that help people. They have changed so many laws, secretly, that redistribute the wealth of your country to their rich people, that you would never be able to track down all the regulations that they have killed, even just recently...


Anyway--it would go on and on that way, giving more specifics, which I didn't really do here, but always with the tone that we are the people (as "the Democratic Party" used to be the same as "the people," the ordinary/majority, as opposed to Republican Bankers, etc.), and we all know what they did to us now, and how they will always, only, dupe and trick you--they have no interest in helping you. (The whole attitude has to be--this is a small, isolated group of rich capitalists, the same plague that societies have had since the beginning of time; and we together are the mainstream population.)
When our Party was turned over to the corporate DLC, etc., it became disaster--NAFTA, GATT, union busting not prosecuted, aid programs cut--(all these things should be admitted)--but now that group is gone, and there is still time to get our country back, and we know what we have to do. We should not consider ourselves "superior" or as if we "accept all people"--I know how you attack as a mob, then go to the effort to censor, Soviet-like, anyone you don't like, while your own hysterical hate stays on the thread. (I am NOT referring to WelshTerrier2.) We need to help those who need it, and get off the bullshit routines.
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