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Tue Nov 18, 2014, 07:12 AM

 

A Platform to Affirm Fundamental Human Rights

Last edited Tue Nov 18, 2014, 12:25 PM - Edit history (1)

First, let's thank Eleanors38, WillyT, and EEO for their help in creating this platform.

Please review this list of 6 Fundamental Rights:

1. The Right to Live
The fundamental right of an Individual

2. The Right to Equal Justice
Every civil liberty is built on this principle

3. The Right to Equal Opportunity
Personal growth is a basic human need - we must provide a level playing field

4. The Right to a Strong Social Safety Net
The measure of a civilization is how it treats its weakest members

5. The Right to Responsible Government
Government must be responsive to the Common Good

6. The Right to True Democracy
The fundamental right of a Society

The principles compiled and categorized below, as collectively voiced by this Group, are offered as some means by which our Fundamental Rights can be protected.

[hr]
A Platform to Affirm Fundamental Human Rights

  1. Right to Live

    • Abolish the Death Penalty

    • Food-Water-Air-Environment

      • Strengthen Environmental Protections/Regulations

      • Abolish Fracking

      • Protect ANWAR

      • End Subsidies for big Agro Companies

    • Shelter

      • Affordable housing

      • Foreclosure Protections

      • Regulate Property Tax Seizure

    • Health

      • Medicare for all/Single Payer

      • Treat Drug Addicts as Patient, not Criminals


  2. Right to Equal Justice

    • Marriage Equality

    • Immigration Reform

    • Wage Equality

    • Restore habeas corpus

    • Sovereignty over our bodies

    • Sovereignty over our identities


  3. Right to Equal Opportunity

    • Living wage

    • Free Higher Education

    • College Debt Jubilee

    • Strengthen Union Protections

    • National Jobs Corps

      • Rebuild our Roads & Bridges

      • Rebuild our Telecommunications & Power Grids

      • Rebuild our Dams, Levees, & Waterways

      • Rebuild our Public Schools, Libraries, Hospitals, & Community Centers

      • Rebuild our National, State, & Local Parks


  4. Right to a Strong Social Safety Net

    • Protect Social Security

      • Repay the Debt

      • Increase the Cap

      • No Chained CPI
      [/il]
    • Expand Medicare/Universal Health Care

    • Expand SNAP (food stamps)

      • Children

      • Elderly

    • Protect Public K-12 Education


  5. Right to a Responsible Government

    • Taxes

      • Tax US Corporations that off-shore jobs

      • Tax Capital gains as regular wages

      • Expand tax credits for small-business start-ups

      • Expand the Earned Income Tax Credit

    • Spending

      • Top to Bottom Overhaul of Defense Budget

      • End No-Bid Federal Contracts

      • End Subsidies for Big Oil, Big Agro, and Big Banks

      • Invest in Renewable Energy Resources

    • Oversight

      • Restore the Glass-Steagall Act

      • Restore Fairness Doctrine

      • Return to Trust Busting

      • Mandate an Aggressive, Populist Justice Department

      • Classify Internet as a Public Utility

    • Environment

      • Strengthen the EPA

      • Acknowledge and act on climate change

  6. Right to Democracy

    • Constitutional Right to Vote

      • Restore All Elements of the Voting Rights Act

    • Abolish Citizens United

    • Abolish Corporate Personhood

    • Campaign Finance Reform

      • No Foreign donations

      • Publicly Funded Elections

    • End Electoral College

[hr]

Your comments, corrections, and additions are encouraged...

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Arrow 45 replies Author Time Post
Reply A Platform to Affirm Fundamental Human Rights (Original post)
demwing Nov 2014 OP
Erich Bloodaxe BSN Nov 2014 #1
merrily Nov 2014 #23
Erich Bloodaxe BSN Nov 2014 #2
merrily Nov 2014 #24
sabrina 1 Nov 2014 #33
merrily Nov 2014 #34
sabrina 1 Nov 2014 #36
merrily Nov 2014 #37
Erich Bloodaxe BSN Nov 2014 #3
merrily Nov 2014 #25
Erich Bloodaxe BSN Nov 2014 #4
merrily Nov 2014 #26
Erich Bloodaxe BSN Nov 2014 #5
demwing Nov 2014 #7
Erich Bloodaxe BSN Nov 2014 #10
merrily Nov 2014 #27
Erich Bloodaxe BSN Nov 2014 #6
KoKo Nov 2014 #11
rhett o rick Nov 2014 #42
merrily Nov 2014 #28
merrily Nov 2014 #30
Prophet 451 Nov 2014 #8
Enthusiast Nov 2014 #9
L0oniX Nov 2014 #17
N_E_1 for Tennis Nov 2014 #12
Enthusiast Nov 2014 #20
N_E_1 for Tennis Nov 2014 #31
sabrina 1 Nov 2014 #38
Thespian2 Nov 2014 #13
Cosmic Kitten Nov 2014 #14
F4lconF16 Nov 2014 #15
L0oniX Nov 2014 #16
F4lconF16 Nov 2014 #18
demwing Nov 2014 #19
F4lconF16 Nov 2014 #22
Scuba Nov 2014 #21
merrily Nov 2014 #29
NYC_SKP Nov 2014 #35
Scuba Nov 2014 #39
merrily Nov 2014 #32
Kalidurga Nov 2014 #40
demwing Nov 2014 #41
rhett o rick Nov 2014 #43
rhett o rick Feb 2015 #44
sabrina 1 Feb 2015 #45

Response to demwing (Original post)

Tue Nov 18, 2014, 07:33 AM

1. Shouldn't the right to live also mean

no executions by the state, and far stronger restrictions on the use of lethal force by law enforcement, with an automatic violation of such rights being levied EVERY TIME police (or corrections officers) kill someone, whether 'justified' or not? Also no assassinations of either citizens or non-citizens, and far more stringent limits upon the justification for military use of lethal force overseas. Ie, no more 'war for oil' or to improve the fortunes of war profiteers, but instead ONLY for the purposes of ending existing violence that is resulting in deaths overseas?

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Response to Erich Bloodaxe BSN (Reply #1)

Tue Nov 18, 2014, 12:48 PM

23. No more serial drone murders!

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Response to demwing (Original post)

Tue Nov 18, 2014, 07:37 AM

2. (I'm also postinf separate comments for 'separate' ideas, so responses can also focus on those items

individually.)

Under 'water' in the right to live, it seems, given the California drought, that the state should prioritize the water needs of humans before those of corporations, especially in times of drought. People should be able to drink without having to buy back water at incredibly inflated prices that bottled water companies have mined out of distressed aquifers. Maybe below certain levels, companies should lose the right to continue to take water from aquifers.

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Response to Erich Bloodaxe BSN (Reply #2)

Tue Nov 18, 2014, 12:49 PM

24. Certain resources should belong to all Americans. Things like water should not be privatized.

..

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Response to merrily (Reply #24)

Tue Nov 18, 2014, 01:58 PM

33. I agree with that. Nationalize, never privatize, maybe we need a Constitutional Amendment

for this, as it is so important an issue, life sustaining resources, such as water.

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Response to sabrina 1 (Reply #33)

Tue Nov 18, 2014, 02:05 PM

34. Exactly, but I was not referring only to life sustaining resources

For example, the air waves supposedly belong to us. That's why the FCC gets to regulate them. But NBC, to name just one, has made trillions on its license. How much out of that went to the US Treasury, though? Truman thought oil under US ground should belong to all the people. As I sit here, exhausted already from other things, even though it's relatively early in the day, I cannot come up with an all inclusive list.

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Response to merrily (Reply #34)

Tue Nov 18, 2014, 03:09 PM

36. Yes, of course, I agree with that. Reregulate Wall St and the Media.

Nationalize HC, and yes, the American people do own the oil they are profiting from and we pay for.

I imagine if the profit was taken out of oil, we would be well on our way to alternative energy sources.

Money truly is the root of all these problems.

FDR, eg, expressed the opinion that no Military Contractor should be allowed to make outrageous profits from wars. He was fearful it might encourage wars that were only for profit.

All this really is so simple. It should not be hard to get things in place that are reasonable and for the benefit of the people in general.

But MONEY is making sure people do not even EXPECT fairness anymore. They are creating a beaten down population willing to live off the crumbs they are thrown and be grateful for those crumbs, and we have plenty of morons ready to keep sending that message.

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Response to sabrina 1 (Reply #36)

Tue Nov 18, 2014, 03:12 PM

37. Exactly. The love of money really is the root of all evil



It was already a truism in Biblical times and the 1% have kept working at it for thousands of years.

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Response to demwing (Original post)

Tue Nov 18, 2014, 07:41 AM

3. Under 'right to equal justice', the glaring missing part

is the lack of reference to the incredible racial disparities that are on display in law enforcement, from 'stop and frisk', 'broken windows', and other racial profiling tactics, to increased arrest rates for minorities,heavier penalties/higher incarceration rates/longer sentences.

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Response to Erich Bloodaxe BSN (Reply #3)

Tue Nov 18, 2014, 12:52 PM

25. I think equal justic covers equal treatment of minorities.

If any group is treated more harshly than any other group by any part of our "justice system," it's neither equal nor justice.

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Response to demwing (Original post)

Tue Nov 18, 2014, 07:45 AM

4. Under social safety net

Major donut hole - we take care of kids, we take care of elders, but we ignore our adults in poverty? We need programs to create government jobs in communities with high unemployment, since obviously the private sector is failing to address such. And government help in matching candidates, especially long term unemployed, to jobs in their areas and skillsets. (this sort of ties to 'equal opportunity'.)

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Response to Erich Bloodaxe BSN (Reply #4)

Tue Nov 18, 2014, 01:00 PM

26. Politicians don't even mention the poor anymore. It's shameful. And yes, jobs are needed.

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Response to demwing (Original post)

Tue Nov 18, 2014, 07:49 AM

5. Under taxes,

The earned income credit is nice, but does nothing for the unemployed. It also is dependent Won factors beyond employee control. Up to a point, it increases with wages, but employees don't set their own wages. What if instead, we did away with the 'standard deduction', and replaced it with a 'standard credit'?

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Response to Erich Bloodaxe BSN (Reply #5)

Tue Nov 18, 2014, 08:01 AM

7. Please understand

 

This list was based on a compilation of three threads. We undoubtedly missed some core components, which is why I categorized what we had so we could more easily identify what we missed

I added Abolish the Death Penalty as an obvious miss, but am going to wait a bit and do another large edit as more holes show up. THANK YOU for the awesome feedback- keep up the flow!

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Response to demwing (Reply #7)

Tue Nov 18, 2014, 08:28 AM

10. I do,

you just asked for feedback, so I tossed mine in I also tried to avoid my own socialistic biases and stick to items that were still congruent with societies running the entire spectrum from capitalistic to socialistic. The one about limiting corporate ability to extract water was the closest I came to injecting socialism

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Response to Erich Bloodaxe BSN (Reply #5)

Tue Nov 18, 2014, 01:08 PM

27. Counter proposal: If a better welfare system were in place, it would supplement incomes of

of anyone getting less a week or a month than a certain amount, regardless whether they are unemployed, underemployed, sick for a while or whatever. Also, I'd like to see this be needs based. For just one example, actors making tons of money are considered unemployed between movies or, during the summer, when their TV show is not filming. I don't think, for instance, Johnny Galecki, whose net worth is estimated at $245 million, should get a payment out of anyone's tax dollars because Big Bang Theory does not film 52 weeks a year.

Granted, that is an extreme example.

I also think people making a good annual salary for a time have an obligation to save for a "rainy day" rather than spending every penny they make. If there is a needs based system, that could be taken into account.

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Response to demwing (Original post)

Tue Nov 18, 2014, 07:58 AM

6. Lastly, under right to democracy,

I see nothing that addresses gerrymandering of districts.

Also, national elections should follow standards set by the federal government, not by states. All presidential races, federal senate and representative races should be able to be 'vote by mail' for all citizens, and requirements for number of voting booths and polling place locations should be based upon population density and last few cycles of turnout - if people are forced to wait in line for an hour or more in any cycle, enough additional machines or polling places must be added for the next two cycles so as to reduce wait times to under an hour based upon the prior turnout levels.

voting day should be a holiday, and, in fact, the act of voting should confer a tax credit, printing out a receipt with a unique id that citizens can input when filing. (and with the aforementioned 'standard tax credit' rather than standard deduction, everyone should be filing anyway.)

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Response to Erich Bloodaxe BSN (Reply #6)

Tue Nov 18, 2014, 08:37 AM

11. I'd add Federally "Expand Early Voting Opportunities in All States..."

and establish a Federal Fund to help states who feel they don't have the money to pay for the expansion or will use that as an argument. Fund could be established with a check off donation on Tax Form if we could make it mandatory that states expand "Early Voting Nationally." We already had that for matching funds for Presidential Campaigns but no one used it in 2008 or 2012 so they donated the money to some charity or something.

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Response to KoKo (Reply #11)

Wed Nov 19, 2014, 10:51 AM

42. I would put that under "a right to free and fair elections" which IMO should be added.

 

Hi KoKo

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Response to Erich Bloodaxe BSN (Reply #6)

Tue Nov 18, 2014, 01:23 PM

28. Agree with all of Reply 6, except for the tax credit for those with jobs.

People should not get the day with pay unless they vote. And, if a paid day off from work is not enough to get working people to vote, they can stay home as far as I am concerned. It's a privilege in my book.

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Response to Erich Bloodaxe BSN (Reply #6)

Tue Nov 18, 2014, 01:29 PM

30. Great job, Erich. Thank you.

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Response to demwing (Original post)

Tue Nov 18, 2014, 08:13 AM

8. bookmark for self n/t

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Response to demwing (Original post)

Tue Nov 18, 2014, 08:28 AM

9. Protecting the General Welfare should be the primary role of the government.

Any action that compromises the general welfare should looked at with a critical eye.

Easy examples would be foreign entanglements, weakened net neutrality or the TPP. These compromise the interests of the general population while rewarding a few influential wealthy connected.

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Response to Enthusiast (Reply #9)

Tue Nov 18, 2014, 10:02 AM

17. +1

 

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Response to demwing (Original post)

Tue Nov 18, 2014, 09:06 AM

12. Don't know where this would fit in....

End "for profit" prisons. Getting profits out of incarceration may end many other social injustices.

Edit to say ... "Limit" instead of "end"

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Response to N_E_1 for Tennis (Reply #12)

Tue Nov 18, 2014, 10:19 AM

20. "End" is fine with me. Otherwise we may discover we have a slippery slope.

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Response to Enthusiast (Reply #20)

Tue Nov 18, 2014, 01:40 PM

31. To clarify...

I posted before my coffee really hit and was rushing off to work.

Should have stated "Abolish "for profit" prisons.

Changed the word end to limit in the second sentence.

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Response to N_E_1 for Tennis (Reply #12)

Tue Nov 18, 2014, 03:13 PM

38. Our system of justice should never be up for sale and for profit. End privatization of

Prisons and return to a system of rehabilitation rather than the brutal system Reagan and his profiteers installed, leaving us with the highest recidivism rates in the world.

So I'm for ending rather than limiting.

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Response to demwing (Original post)

Tue Nov 18, 2014, 09:27 AM

13. k & R

Right to Democracy
Add: Make election day a Holiday. Abolish use of voting machines.

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Response to Thespian2 (Reply #13)

Tue Nov 18, 2014, 09:52 AM

14. ^^^^^ YES!

A national holiday as BIG as 4th of July.
And paper ballots

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Response to Thespian2 (Reply #13)

Tue Nov 18, 2014, 09:53 AM

15. +1

Making election day a holiday would be especially helpful with youth turnout, as they are the ones that tend to hold jobs that they can't take time off of (though we see that more and more at all age levels).

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Response to demwing (Original post)

Tue Nov 18, 2014, 10:00 AM

16. Can't hurt to examine international human rights laws as well.

 

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Response to demwing (Original post)

Tue Nov 18, 2014, 10:12 AM

18. I would like to see some action taken to address

The two-party system as well. Though I realize this is a site dedicated to Democrats and supporting Democratic principles, I think we have to recognize that the two-party system currently in place does not foster democracy. We need to address that and abolish the system.

A good start to that is ending the electoral college and creating publicly funded elections. That said, more drastic steps need to be taken to protect the right to choice of a candidate. As I said in another thread posted here, if I can't vote for a socialist candidate for fear of losing my vote or electing a Republican, then I don't have a vote. I don't have a choice.

This is why I would like to see instant-runoff voting procedures instituted at the national level, with states being forced to follow those procedures, as suggested upthread. Voting for a candidate you don't want to prevent someone worse from winning means you no longer have a vote, or at least not one that matters in a meaningful way. Instant-runoff voting (where you select candidates in order of priority, and if your first choice does not garner enough votes to win, then your vote goes to your second choice, then a third, etc.) will address this. We need to add this or something similar to our party platform, or we will see any gains we make over the next 5-10 years eventually eroded again.

There are fundamental changes to our elections system that we must support, or we are only providing the illusion of the Right to Democracy. Despite being one of the two parties in power in the two-party system, we must be willing to relinquish some of that power to preserve democracy.

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Response to F4lconF16 (Reply #18)

Tue Nov 18, 2014, 10:16 AM

19. how would you work that into a party reform platform? /nt

 

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Response to demwing (Reply #19)

Tue Nov 18, 2014, 12:30 PM

22. I would start by making it so that national elections

Are governed by federal standards instead of state standards. Perhaps by giving the FEC the power to create and enforce elections standards for national elections?

To be honest, I'm not really sure how it would best be done. Hopefully some of the other members of this board with more knowledge and experience can suggest something. I just want to call attention to it, as II think it's something we can't forget about.

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Response to demwing (Original post)

Tue Nov 18, 2014, 11:02 AM

21. A couple fine points ...

 

Under health, I believe it should read "Medicare for All" (rather than Medicaid).

Under equal justice - legalization of cannibus for recreational use.

Under Democracy - paper ballots, hand counted, in public, cameras rolling.



Thanks to those who put this great list together.

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Response to Scuba (Reply #21)

Tue Nov 18, 2014, 01:29 PM

29. +1

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Response to Scuba (Reply #21)

Tue Nov 18, 2014, 02:56 PM

35. Rather than "legalization of cannibis for recreational use"...

 

Last edited Tue Nov 18, 2014, 06:08 PM - Edit history (1)

...which seems a to be a bit of a niche interest, might we not broaden it to be more inclusive?

There's a lot of over-regulation of organics and homegrown foods and homeopathic materials, and maybe some principle addressing those could then include recreational weed.

Or, we need to add the freedom to use natural organic goods as we see fit for personal consumption.

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Response to NYC_SKP (Reply #35)

Tue Nov 18, 2014, 05:59 PM

39. +1

 

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Response to demwing (Original post)

Tue Nov 18, 2014, 01:42 PM

32. As a woman, I am uneasy over having "Right to Live" be item one, unless there can be

some clear distinction between that and the RW anti abortion movement that euphemistically dubs itself right to life. (I say this as someone who is inalterably opposed to violence, war, the death penalty, etc.) I guess it's covered by "sovereignty over our bodies," but it was still a shocker when I saw it.

I'd also like to see something that underscores that government's compliance with the Bill of Rights is NOT voluntary. If we have any right only so long as government sees no need to take it from us, then we don't really have that right. That is sort of related to equal justice, but I don't think it is directly covered by it.

Great job, though, for those who created the contents of the OP and everyone who commented on this thread.

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Response to demwing (Original post)

Tue Nov 18, 2014, 06:39 PM

40. I agree with most the items on the list

not sure about ending the Electoral College though. I am not even sure I like the idea of states splitting their votes. If every other item under section 6 came to fruition then it would be a moot point anyway, because more people would vote and that would favor people who promote progressive causes.

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Response to demwing (Original post)

Wed Nov 19, 2014, 09:03 AM

41. I'll do an overhaul on the list tonight

 

so please review the suggestions and get in your change requests.

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Response to demwing (Original post)

Wed Nov 19, 2014, 10:57 AM

43. I like this. I recommend you update with edits and note that it's a work in progress.

 

Also, I would like to see some prioritization if possible, maybe separately. And a listing (separate) of which organizations are working on what.

Another idea, possibly related, we need to start working on a rewrite of the Democratic National Platform based on the above, leaving out sections like "distributing democracy around the world" or however, they currently say it.

Great work here demwing.

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Response to demwing (Original post)

Mon Feb 16, 2015, 10:27 AM

44. Excellent work. There is a Populist Movement underway as we have seen with the many, many protests

 

across the country. But the movement lacks organization and coordination. Someone needs to develop Goals, Strategy, and Tactics for the movement. What you have here is an excellent start for Goals. Next step is prioritization and then develop strategies and tactics for attacking the goals.

I would like to see us rewrite the Democratic Party Platform using this as a basis.

On edit: I didn't realize that I said essentially the same thing back in Nov.

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Response to rhett o rick (Reply #44)

Tue Feb 17, 2015, 12:44 PM

45. Lol, that just shows how consistent you are Rhett!

I like the idea of demanding EVERYTHING that we SHOULD have rather than just reacting every time something, like SS, is under attack.

The OP is an excellent compilation of things that any civilized society should expect.

I would add that Military Spending should be limited to only what is needed for National Security.

The current Military Budget is outrageous.

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