First Published in DelawareLiberal on August 20, 2014 by ProgressivePopulist
Do you dread opening your daily newspaper and internet news source
each morning like I do? Ferguson, Wilmington, Iraq, Syria, Afghanistan
and countless other hotbeds of conflict, hate and destruction. And
America is at the center of it all.
We've managed to build a
society that is earning us both disappointment and hostility across the
continent and the globe. About the only undisappointed and non-hostile
are the very few reaping the very rare but enormous economic benefits
from the version of capitalism we are practicing as a nation. And
protecting as a government.
The research I read tells me
mainstream people, foreign and domestic, look upon America with
skepticism and distrust and certainly do not buy the myth of American
exceptionalism with the possible exception of those exploited people in
this hemisphere whose local economies pay them so little they view our
minimum wage jobs as a way out of their dire poverty.
hostility we're experiencing was not created by President Obama. It is
a function of post WWII foreign and economic policies built by multiple
generations and bi-partisan consensus. Decades of economic
exploitation and corporate plundering, with military interventions to
protect those interests and the repressive foreign regimes we've bought
off to support our endeavors are the causes of the ravaging fires in the
middle east and immigration crises from the south of our borders.
domestic focus on protecting our corporate interests at the expense of
addressing the interests of our mainstream population and resulted in a
massive increase in domestic poverty, joblessness and racial conflict.
Where there is no current conflict, there is endemic hopelessness.
here's where the Democratic Party can make a huge difference. The
Party can be a key vehicle for solutions by departing from the
incrementalism it has been timidly offering as solutions to problems
requiring much bigger thinking. Many of the big ideas are marinating in
the policy prescriptions of the progressive movement within the Party.
is the time for the Party and its candidates to offer reforms on both
our domestic and international fronts and start the national
discussion. Virtually no national discussion is currently underway in
spite of the very obvious state of crisis our nation is in. The DNC,
our State Party organizations, President Obama and the Congressional
Democrats can and should be facilitators of this discussion through
neighborhood, internet and national leadership forums and meetings. It
can start with this mid-term election and continue through the 2016
Here's an outline of some of the agenda as I see it:
Climate policy, racial conflict and reparations, a redefined
immigration policy, increasing electoral participation and trust,
corporate regulation and discipline, restricting corporate domination of
public policy and legislation, consumer rights, workers rights, full
employment, fair wages, rebuilding the commons, fair share taxation,
priority economic growth sectors, modernizing the Constitution,
Foreign: Climate collaboration, no war policy,
re-thinking military facilities, restraining corporate interference
with foreign societies, relationships with oppressive regimes, fair
trade, international corporate reform, reforming a dysfunctional U.N.,
prosecuting state crime and world criminal justice.
our Delaware DNC delegates and Congressional delegation might agree that
patch work solutions are not getting us where we need to be and get on
board with ambitious initiatives to reform and revolutionize our
If the task is perceived as too challenging,
then help us retool to retire the myth of American exceptionalism and
work to build a smaller, more modest and humble empire.