The Democratic Party: Once the champion of the little guy, the working class, the downtrodden and the left behind (not in the fake religious sense like HBO’s “The Leftovers” but in reality, right here in 2017 Real America) is once again searching for its lost “soul.”  That a political party has a “soul” in today’s political landscape is at least arguable, and maybe just a laughable proposition at best.  If you recall, Republicans went through a similar process of soul searching following Obama’s second win in 2012.  What came of this effort?  A three or four page rendition of what Republicans stand for, what the party needed to change and where the future of the Republican Party lay.  The practical impacts, the changes the Party made in its do-over attempt?  Not a damned thing.  In fact, given their “healthcare” replacement for Obamacare proposals that will result from 20 to 30 million people losing their health insurance, stripping mandates for covering medical conditions from insurance policies, re-instituting non-coverage for pre-existing conditions, and, oh yes, defunding Planned Parenthood, the non-re-invention of the Republican Party pushed it even further towards the already extreme radical conservative trends they’d been following for decades.

So one could posit that the disaster that is the Trump/Ryan healthcare replacement effort provides a golden opportunity for Democrats to re-take the Senate and even the House (maybe) come the national off-year election in 2018 and the Presidential Election in 2020.  Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi have published something called “A Better Deal,” the title being a riff on Trump’s most famous publication (until his authorship of the Muslim Travel Ban) “The Art of the Deal”    [“A Better Deal” Text is here:]  “A Better Deal” is a one page, easy to read document.  These two positive aspects of the document are far outweighed by what I can only term the absolute vacuity of the text’s actual words.   Now, there’s nothing really wrong with restating where Democrats stand on the minimum wage or creating millions of jobs (as Trump has also proposed) but we all know what the Democratic Party stands for.  Hillary Clinton gave us a reasonably fulsome and extended lecture on this very same topic for over a year.

What we want, however, are not re-hashed political platitudes as wonderful as they might be, but solutions.  Solutions to the yawning gap between rich and poor in America.  Solutions to the stranglehold corporate America has over us un-rich folks.  Solutions to Climate Change.  Solutions to gerrymandering and voter suppression. Solutions to the continued shitstorm that is politics today.  Solutions to, yes, the plight of Rust Belters, although as to this last one, I have only lukewarm allegiance.  Democrats will not win if the only thing they do is to remind folks of what the Party once admirably stood for and the re-hashing of the universal platitudes that we all embrace already as liberals.

What the Democratic Party needs to do, first, is to find a solution to the current split between the Progressive/Liberal factions (the Bernie Bros warfare) of this presumably natural coalition particularly in the face of Republican radicalism.    What the Party needs to do is to field young, creative, bold and dynamic candidates – and to support them with MONEY– all over the country.  Even in deep Red Congressional Districts.   Schumer, Pelosi, Pence and the rest of the Democratic Establishment must divorce themselves from big money lobbyists who supply them with campaign funds but cause them to vote against our – us regular folks – best interests.   Democrats must stop kowtowing to the interests of the business community when their interests results in a worse deal for us regular folks.  The Democratic Party must be honest.  They must be honest with us, their constituents.  They must be honest about the issues we face as a nation.  These do NOT include transgender bathroom use, Planned Parenthood defunding or Trump’s illegal voters Commission.  This is not to say that Democrats should ignore such issues, indeed, we must continue to support and counter them, but they are not the main issues the country faces.  I would argue that the increasing radicalism of Republicans, the continuing assault of Republican states against voting rights, the Congressional weakening of banking regulations, scuttling of EPA regulations, the healthcare mess, gerrymandering, right wing dishonesty, - all right, let's just call it what it really is - LYING! - spring to mind.

Republicans and Trump have offered a virtual cornucopia of real world issues - not illegals voting in Presidential elections - to run against.  Frankly, I'm betting that America is getting just a tad tired of cutting taxes to create jobs as the only solution to creating jobs since it hasn't worked in thirty years and closing the wealth gap, also a thirty year phenom.  Witness the nationwide revolt against the Trump/Ryan Deathcare Act.   People understood that what the Republicans in the House and the Senate were offering as a replacement to Obamacare, was a shit sandwich that would hurt millions of Americans.  And they responded.   Or take the Trump's Tweeter ban on transgender people serving in the military.  Democrats might be tempted to jump all over Trump's unfathomable "reasoning" for this, but the issue that's enjoined is not some shoot-from-the-hip Trump policy (this is his "style") but the larger issue of the Constitutional rights afforded every single American whether gay, straight, lesbian, transgender or Latino, African American, Native American and any other "out group" one can name.  If the Civil Rights Act needs to be amended to include gays and transgender Americans so be it.  This is what Democrats should be about.

But the Dems "A Better Deal" doesn't grapple with what America would "look like" if we elected Dems to the House and Senate in 2108 and to the Presidency in 2020. There is nothing in this vapid document that might spark the imagination for "A Better America" rather than just a better deal than Trump, which, truth be told, is not such a high bar.

And while Trump has awakened a slice of Democrats and liberals who have apparently been comatose for the past three decades, Trump is not the issue.   His "policies" and those of the Republican enablers in the House (Paul Ryan) and the Senate (Mitch McConnell) are, whether they are announced via Twitter or through Executive Orders.  Trump is not nuts.  He’s not crazy.  He’s not unhinged.  These characterizations simply exonerate him from his very cruel and dumb actions.  Trump appealed to an ignored slice of Americana and they elected him.  It remains to be seen if Democrats attempt to re-engage these folks to the Democratic Party platform and if they do, if such an effort will be successful.  It might be.  Hillary Clinton was so damaged by thirty years of being slimed by Judicial Watch and the conservative media and Trump voters swallowed the "Lock Her Up" garbage whole.   But I’m betting they are not going to return to the Democratic fold.  They’ve been voting (Republican) against their own economic, social and political interests for so long now that it is unlikely they will suddenly see the error of their ways.  The error of their votes, let’s say.  To suddenly think that they will magically see the light is engaging in magical thinking.  And this is precisely what Republicans and conservatives have been engaged in for the past three decades.  We must stop it.  The Democratic Party must address this magical world of conservative fantasy directly and forcefully if they expect to win. 

There is simply no way to counter the "Fears About Cultural Displacement" or that "College Is A Gamble."  Democrats need not try.  It's useless. 

Have A Great Day And Let Dems Know What You Think!


Popular posts from this blog