Wednesday, August 11, 2010

The General Welfare

The far right has its "Contract On America," crony capitalism, tax cuts for the rich, social repression, and hatred of all those who don't fit its definition of "real" Americans.   The center has the moderate meanness of Austerity Now, the Blue Dogs dithering over whether the richest democracy in the world can afford basic decency, and its own slightly more respectable forms of crony capitalism.

The time has come to restate the Left Agenda.

What would it mean to actually fulfill the ideals of the American Declaration of Independence and Constitution -- to form a Republic of the people, by the people, and for the people, dedicated to promoting the General Welfare, securing the rights to life, liberty and pursuit of happiness of all its citizens?

What can we need to do to bring us closer to being one nation, with liberty and justice for all, in fact and not only in aspiration?

What is required to assure the rights and privileges of citizenship in the United States to all persons born or naturalized here, to guarantee to each one of us due process and the equal protection of the laws, or to assure that we never have an aristocracy?

How do we combine the moral imperatives of a democratic republic with the economic incentives of a market economy to create a society that works for all its members and not just a select few?  

This blog will post proposals -- mainly legislative, mainly Federal -- designed to help make the American dream a reality.  We seek a country in which
  • all those who are able to work can find decent jobs at decent pay, and those who are unable are not abandoned,
  • remembering what it is to be a stranger in a stranger land, we accept that we are our brothers' keepers,
  • the promise of universal citizenship, like the religious tradition of common descent from a common ancestor, motivates our politics and policies,the awesome power of the state is utilized to protect the helpless and end private oppression,
  • equal protection of the laws applies to all, and
  • basic decency assures that we never treat our fellow citizens as disposable tools to someone else's goals.

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