The New Democrat Online

Friday, July 31, 2015

Grit-TV: Video: Richard Wolff: Bernie Sanders and Socialism

Democratic Socialist 
Grit-TV: Video: Richard Wolff: Bernie Sanders and Socialism

I guess I look at socialism like I look at conservatism. Not that they are similar, but that both have two competing factions in them. With conservatism, you have Conservatives, or Conservative Libertarians and you have Libertarians. And lets leave the Religious Conservatives and Neoconservatives out of this for the purpose of this piece. And with socialism, you have the Marxists, who are way out in left field. And is an ideology that has almost no power in the world now. And then you have the Democratic Socialists, or Social Democrats. People who not just believe in socialism and a democratic form of it, but believe that for socialism to be as effective as possible, you must have a sufficient private sector and private enterprise. To generate the revenue needed for the socialist state to thrive.

And Bernie Sanders and a lot of his supporters and before him lets say George McGovern in the 1970s, Norman Thomas in the 1960s, Henry Wallace in the 1950s and 1940s, all of these men are Democratic Socialists, or Social Democrats. People who are very democratic in nature and even believe in a level of both personal and economic freedom, but who believed that you needed a welfare state-run by government to see to it that no one was left behind. That everyone was taken care, that there was a social insurance system for people who go through tough times in the private enterprise economy. And to take care of people who are disabled and who simply can’t work at all.

In a democratic socialist system, you would have some industries that are nationalized as well. In the areas that Socialists believe everyone needs to have and be able to use at an affordable rate. Things like health care, education, health insurance, pension, energy, banking to use as examples. But by in the large the economy would be in private hands. People would not just own their own personal property, but could start their own business and run their business. You would even see large private business’s. Including automakers, telecommunications, media, manufacturing, all small and local business’s. But they would all be subjected to high taxes and regulations to see that no one has to go without. These being the differences between socialism and statism.

The Federalist: Staff: Remember The Moral Majority? Russell Moore Says It’s Over

The Federalist: Staff: Remember The Moral Majority? Russell Moore Says It’s Over

I hope the Moral Majority as a movement at least in the sense that it has any real political power outside of the Republican Party is essentially over and done with. It is a movement that still sees America in the year 1955. Even as the country is now sixty-years old and has simply developed and moved on.

Americans, tend to like their freedom and to be able to live their own lives. And generally now especially with younger Americans even in the Bible Belt, don’t have issues with things like multiculturalism and racial and ethnic diversity, homosexuality, women working out of the home, pre-marital sex, domestic partnerships that even produce children, immigration, gambling pornography and I could go on, but I’ll save you from that. But these are all issues that the Moral Majority has fought against at least since the 1960s and have even wanted government to get involved in and regulating with how consenting adults live their own lives.

What you may see now with whatever is left of the Moral Majority is a movement that tries to bring people to them. But leaves government out and tells people this is the best and moral way to live based on their religious values. And try to get people to adopt their way of life and lifestyle. But stop trying to get government to pass their values into law. And to educate people about what their movement is about. Because I think they are even realizing now and Russell Moore is an example of this that they no longer have much support outside of the Republican Party and have even lost support inside of the Republican Party. With the growing conservative libertarian movement that is made up of a lot of young Republicans now.

Thursday, July 30, 2015

The Baseline Scenario: Opinion: James Kwak: Friedrich Hayek Supported a Guaranteed Minimum Income

The Baseline Scenario: Opinion: James Kwak: Friedrich Hayek Supported a Guaranteed Minimum Income

Friedrich Hayek, supported the Guaranteed Minimum Income and Milton Friedman supported the Negative Income Tax. Good for them and the libertarian movement, because it shows that perhaps the least politically diverse political movement in America even has some diversity with some competing ideas in it. The Negative Income Tax by the way, would replace all public assistance programs for the poor and give people in poverty one check every month that would have all of their public assistance benefits every month in one check. Bill Buckley, a Conservative Libertarian was against that.

Now here are my issues with what is called the Guaranteed Minimum Income, or the Guaranteed Basic Income, however you want to put it. As a Liberal, I want everyone to be incentivized to do as well as they can in America so they don’t have to live in poverty. The best way to move people out of poverty is to supply quality education, job training and infrastructure in communities that come up short in these areas. So kids from these communities can get themselves a good education and so their parents can finish and further their education and get themselves a good job and get out of poverty all together. That is how you beat poverty. Education, job training, infrastructure and good jobs.

Once you take away the incentive like with a Guaranteed Basic Income for Americans to do well in life and do as well as they can so they and their kids don’t have to live in poverty, because whatever job they have, or if they choose not work, because their income is now guaranteed no matter how productive they are, you’ll see a major drop in productivity in America. And as a result a major drop in economic growth. Because companies are no longer producing the quality of products their customers are accustomed to. And as a result people aren’t spending the money they normally do. Which is a big part of our economic growth, consumer spending. Why? Because no matter what we are all guaranteed a minimum income that keeps us out of poverty.

The New Republic: The Long March to Medicare

Great Society?
The New Republic: The Long March to Medicare

The fiftieth anniversary of the most successful government health insurance program in the country, if not the most successful health insurance program period. No other health insurer has provided more health insurance to more Americans than Medicare. And perhaps to more people in the world than Medicare. My issues with Medicare is not that the program exists at all, which is the libertarian argument against it. Or that it is a government-run health insurance program. But my issues is with how the program was set up. And the reason why it was set up, is because that is the best that Democratic Congress with Republican help from the minority could come up with in 1965.

We are a huge country that is between two of the largest oceans in the world. And that is just the mainland United States and back in 1965 we were a country roughly one-eighty-million people or so. And today we are pushing three-hundred-twenty-million people. And yet we set up two new huge health insurance programs that are to be run by one central authority in this huge country. Instead of bringing in the states to run their share of this program for their state. Or to create one health insurer that everyone could be eligible for. Not forced on them, but have a new public health insurer that everyone could sign up for and pay into if they choose to. Along with putting money down along with their employer so they are guaranteed health insurance in their senior years.

The original Affordable Care Act of 2009-10 that was passed by the House of Representatives in fall of 2009 had a public option in it for Medicare. Meaning people under Medicare age could sign up and pay into Medicare before they retire and before they are 65. That amendment was taken out of the Senate in the early spring of 2010. So the final bill that was passed on March of didn’t have the public option in it. So Medicare is still the largest health insurer in the country if not world and yet it only covers seniors. The least healthiest population of the country and makes it very expensive to run and pay for. You give middle-age and young adults and their kids the option to be part of Medicare and you would see millions of Americans sign up for Medicare. Which would bring down the costs of Medicare, because you would have young healthy Americans as part of the program.

Yes Medicare has been a very successful program because it has guaranteed health insurance to millions of Americans who otherwise wouldn’t have had it. Or would’ve ended up moving to the poor house, or having to sell everything that has value to them in order to get health care in their senior years. But this program could be so much better and so much more cost-effective and not so top-down. And allow for middle-age and young adults to cover themselves and their health insurance through Medicare. As well as similar to Medicaid bring the states in and allow for them to set up their own Medicare program where all of their citizens would be eligible for instead of just their seniors. And we wouldn’t need a Medicaid, or a Children’s Health Insurance Program, because those customers could take Medicare. Which is a much better program anyway.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Politico Magazine: Opinion: Barney Frank: “Why Progressives Shouldn’t Support Bernie”: Why Barney is Wrong

Politico Magazine: Opinion: Barney Frank: “Why Progressives Shouldn’t Support Bernie”: Why Barney is Wrong

Just to be clear, I’m not writing this because I believe Bernie Sanders will ever be President of the United States, or believe he can even beat Hillary Clinton for the Democratic nomination. The second part, I’m not sure about, but Bernie’s chances of ever being President of the United States are somewhere between George McGovern and none. And if you don’t know who George McGovern is, you might be to dumb and young to read this. And I’m not writing this because I support Bernie Sanders for president either. Because I don’t and have already declared my support for Martin O’Malley. Who I believe is the only true Liberal Democrat in the race at least as far as what he’s actually accomplished.

I’m writing this, because I don’t want Hillary Clinton to get a cakewalk to the Democratic nomination. Without having to explain to Democrats why she should be President of the United States. Other than who her husband is and do you remember the 1990s and oh by the way she’s a women and would be the first female President of the United States. Every single U.S. President that we’ve had at least since 1976 has had to go through a real primary process and has had to introduce them self and explain to voters why they want to be president and what they would do as president. Barack Obama 2008, George W. Bush 2000, Bill Clinton 1992, Ronald Reagan 2000 and Jimmy Carter 1976. Why should Hillary Clinton be any different? What makes her more special than those future president’s?

This idea that Representative Barney Frank was making that if Hillary gets a real primary challenge in 2016, that will make her weaker in the general election against whoever the Republicans decide to nominate for president, assuming they actually make that decision, is at least borderline ridiculous and I could use stronger language than that. First of all, Hillary was the frontrunner not just for the Democratic nomination in 2008, but also expected to be the next President of the United States. But she ends up losing the Democratic nomination to a junior Senator named Barack Obama. So lets say she wins the nomination in 2008, she probably loses to John McCain in the fall. Because the issues that she would’ve had in the primaries like not knowing why she wanted to be president and not having a vision, would’ve come out.

Being the frontrunner, just means you’re the favorite going in. That you have the most support and best finances than any other candidate in the race. Similar to an NFL team expected to be the favorite to win the Super Bowl in the summer. But Super Bowls aren’t won in the summer. And presidential elections and primaries aren’t decided more than a year from the presidential election. At the end of the day the person with the best campaign, organization, finances and message and vision for where they want to take the country not just wins their party’s nomination for president, but is elected the next president. And then Senator Obama, simply beat then Senator Clinton in all of these areas in 2008.

A year from now assuming that Hillary Clinton is the Democratic nominee for president, I don’t want her to still be in her centrist independent experience matters shell that she was in just a couple of months ago before Bernie Sanders and Martin O’Malley started to give her some real competition and forced her to give some real speeches and take real policy positions. And not know why she wants to be President of the United States. If Hillary hasn’t figured that out by now and figure out how to communicate that to Democratic voters, well one she might have a problem, but two she’s running out of time to figure that out. The first Democratic presidential debate will be in August, or September.

Political primaries, aren’t about destroying the frontrunner and doing whatever you can to beat that person at all costs and dividing the party. They are a real competition to decide who will not only be the next leader of the party, but the next leader of the country. And in this case the most important job in the world which is President of the United States. This is not something that should be handed out to the person with best name ID, or who happens to be the most popular in the party in the beginning. Democratic primaries at least, make Democratic presidential candidates better. Because it forces candidates to deal with issues and even their own concerns early on. While they still have time to deal with them and fix them. The competition that Hillary is getting right now, will only make her better if she handles it correctly and successfully address’ it. And if not, then maybe she shouldn’t be the next Democratic nominee for president, because she didn’t earn it.

The Eagle Forum: Blog: Phyllis Schlafly: The Republican Cuckservatives

Take Back America From Who?
The Eagle Forum: Blog: Phyllis Schlafly: The Republican Cuckservatives

So I guess cuckservative, whatever that is, sounds to me more like some type of sexual insult, perhaps a shot at gay men, or something, but I guess this is the new term that Tea Party Neoconservatives use for Republicans who aren’t as far to the right as they are. I know, a cukservative is a shot from the Christian-Right against gay Republicans. Even though gays tend to agree with Republicans on economic policy. But what is a Republican, really. I know the answer to this, so I’ll share what it is. A Republican, is someone who believes in a republican form of government. And in a federal republican liberal democratic country like America, that means checks and balances and a country that is governed by a constitution. Not by religious institutions, or religious groups, regardless of religion.

The Tea Party wing of the Republican Party, that Democratic U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer calls the modern John Birch Society, is not new to the Republican Party. But what makes them different from the John Birhcer’s of the 1960s lets say, is that the Tea Party has real power and numbers. Even in Ronald Reagan’s time, the John Birchers were seen as a fringe group and people who lived in their own world and saw things that others didn’t see. And a lot of that had to do because they were on a different political planet. But post-Reagan and even the Bush’s, the Republican establishment is pretty weak. The GOP has a leadership void that we haven’t seen in either major political party since the Democrats of the 1970s and 1980s, when they were seen as way out in left field. Now Republicans are seen as way out in right field.

Back in the day, Republicans were Republicans. They believed in a strong vibrant private sector with a strong private enterprise capitalist economy. That government closest to home is the best government. That deficit spending is bad spending and that even included the defense budget, not including Ronald Reagan and George W. Bush. And speaking of defense, they believed in a strong national defense of course. But that was mostly about the national security of the United States, not being strong enough to police the world by ourselves.

Back in the day, women and even racial and ethnic minorities voted Republican. Why? Because Republicans didn’t push the social issues for the most part. It was Barry Goldwater who is famous for saying that a Conservative is someone who wants big government out of our wallets, homes, schools and boardrooms. But I guess Senator Goldwater would be called a RINO today, because he wasn’t with the Christian-Right on most issues. Women and minorities at one point voted for Republicans, because they didn’t make it harder for minorities to vote with bogus voter ID laws, or bash immigration and call non-Europeans immigrants Un-American and accuse them of coming to America so they can be on welfare and questioning their work-ethic and all of that. It was Ron Reagan that called America an immigrant nation.

I’m not a Republican obviously as a Liberal Democrat, but the people who I just described as Republicans the Barry Goldwater’s, Ron Reagan’s, Ron Paul’s even, are. The RINOS, are people who are only Republicans in Name Only, because we no longer have a Whig Party, or a Confederate Party, or a Christian Conservative Party, a Neoconservative Party. Where they would be more comfortable politically being a part of. Today’s RINOS, are only Republicans, because that is the only major political in America that would take them, instead of institutionalizing them, or trying to deport them. Today’s GOP is suffering from a leadership vacuĆ¼m. Which is what tends to happen to political parties when they spend a long time outside of the White House and when their last presidency didn’t go very well. Which is very similar to what happen to Democrats in the 1970s and 80s.

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Reason: Opinion: Steve Chapman: Martin O’Malley – Unknown But Not Implausible

Liberal With Results
Reason: Opinion: Steve Chapman: Martin O’Malley – Unknown But Not Implausible

I think Steve Chapman in his Reason piece makes some of the best points that I’ve heard about Martin O’Malley yet. His point being that O’Malley has already accomplished a lot of what Senator Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton say that they want to do. He’s the only Democratic presidential candidate with not just real executive experience, or a lot of it, but executive experience that has come with real positive results.

Raising the minimum wage in Maryland

Moving people out of poverty in Baltimore and Maryland

Improving education and investing more in it in Baltimore and Maryland.

Legalizing same-sex marriage in Maryland.

Outlawing the death penalty in Maryland.

Reducing crime in one of the biggest cities in America in Baltimore. And lowering crime in Baltimore faster than any other big city mayor.

Decriminalizing marijuana in Maryland.

Martin O’Malley, doesn’t have a record of fighting for progressive and liberal values. He has a record of accomplishing liberal and progressive goals based on those values. Here’s a former state governor that left his state with the best public schools in the nation. You can say you’re a fighter, right. But boxers like politicians are judged by their records. Anyone can fight a good fight and come close. But at the end of the day it comes down to what have you done for me lately. Did you accomplish what you set out to do, or did you fight a good fight, but still came up short. Martin O’Malley, has a clear successful record of accomplishing what Liberal and Progressive Democrats say they want.

What separates Martin O’Malley from Senator Bernie Sanders, whose been in Congress since the early 1990s and before that was a small town mayor in Vermont and even Hillary Clinton, who didn’t have a great record as Secretary of State and left that office with Benghazi on her plate, is that the Governor’s two main opponents are fighters and have fought good causes. But what has either one accomplished while they’ve been in office for such a long time. They are both big names and well-known and both have real pop culture appeal to them. But what have they done for anyone lately? With Governor O’Malley, he can answer that question clearly and give people a list of accomplishments. And yet not many Democrats have even heard his name yet.