There IS a dime’s worth of difference
By Thomas McKelvey Cleaver / The Rag Blog / July 5, 2010
[On June 30 The Rag Blog posted an article by Tom Cleaver titled “The Texas Greens: Making a Deal With the Dark Side” about the recent controversy concerning the allegedly Republican-directed and corporate-funded petition drive to get Green Party candidates on the Texas ballot for the upcoming fall election. Tom here elaborates on his contention, disputed by some of the Greens and their supporters, that, even from a progressive perspective, there is much more than a “dimes-worth” of difference between the Democrats and Republicans.]
In answer to those who might have disagreed with my previous post about the political immorality of the Green Party, ask yourselves if this is the America we’d like to see after the November elections:
According to the Republican leadership, their first priority would be repeal of the health care reform act. Yes, it’s not anywhere close to perfect, and on more than a few points, it’s not even good. I would remind all of you, however, that when Social Security first passed in 1935, the only jobs covered were those “traditionally” held by white males, and not even all of them. However, by the time I got my Social Security Card in 1958, pretty much everyone was covered.
The Medicare Act that passed in 1966 was a shadow of the program that exists today. In both cases, what happened was progressives got their foot in the door, and then proceeded in the following years to work to amend the law and expand coverage. Right now the GOP plan is to repeal and if they cannot do that, to refuse to fund the Affordable Care Act, something they can do if they gain control of the House.
Their second priority would be to reduce regulation of business and industry beyond where it is already. To the Republicans, the problem in the Gulf of Mexico is not that BP has wrecked the environment for the coming century, but that the government regulated the oil industry at all. They want MORE of what caused the problem, and they’ll be happy to apologize to the oil companies for anything done against their interests.
The same is the case with Wall Street reform, which they characterize as “using a nuclear weapon on an ant.” Their plan is to keep everything as it was before, all the programs and policies that led to the greatest financial meltdown since the Great Depression.
Their third priority would be to kill any environmental legislation that attempts to deal with climate change, which they say is a “liberal plot” to destroy capitalism. They would also take away the authority of the Environmental Protection Agency to regulate greenhouse emissions.
They would gut the Endangered Species Act, some would destroy the EPA, and “drill baby drill” and “dig baby dig” would be the policies of the day. The result 50 years from now, when the “tipping point” has been passed and profound change is irreversible, would be a “revolution” for sure, but not one I think anyone would want.
Their fourth priorities would be to start legislating choice out of existence, and to not only maintain current restrictions against gay people, but to further criminalize the state of being gay. (Think I am kidding? The GOP-dominated Montana legislature right now is debating a bill to make homosexuality a felony.)
I think we can see what they would do to education in the current follies of the Texas School Board.
So, for those who think there isn’t a dime’s worth of difference between the Republicans and the Democrats, welcome to Republican World.
I am sure there are those (my wife included) who will say I am being an alarmist, that the necessary majorities won’t happen this November, but all it will take is 39 seats changing over in the House (and they only have to win by one vote in each) and the Reaction begins.
Whatever happens, this election is going to be close, and the decisive races — whichever way they go — will be by razor-thin margins. Remember the last six years of the Clinton presidency, with the Republicans in control of the House? That will be a Sunday school picnic, compared to what will happen this time. I’ll be happy to be proven wrong on November 10.
Still, I am not convinced that there is any difference between the two sides of the same political gang of corrupt crooks.
In response to the evil designs you imagine might happen if the republican side were to win seats, I offer those things that the democrat side promised under the banner of hope that have not happened.
An end to the stupid, unnessary wars have only been extended beyond any reason.
As to re-illegalizing gay people that you imagine, Don’t Ask or Tell has done that for millions and despite promises, still opressed gay people.
Because of inaction on campaign promises, thousands of our cousins from the south are in danger of further opression.
Promised “public option” health care has turned in to a gigantic windfall for insurance corporations.
I could go on but you all know the score, corruption 100, people 0.
As always I encourage everyone now planning to vote for their side of the dime, not too.
Not voting will send the strongest message to both sides of the dime.
Don’t be a sucker again. DON’T VOTE!!!
The issue is not that there is no difference, some difference, or a lot of difference between Democrats and Republicans.
The fact is they both take huge amounts of corporate donations, which has a massive impact on their policies.
The other fact is, the Green Party, the Libertarian Party, independent candidates, and other parties all have the right to form and run for office.
However, time after time, the two major parties work diligently to block their participation, to the harm of the American people.
For more information about the Green Party, what we do, and what we stand for, visit my blog at http://www.darylnorthrop.com/
The difference between the Democratic and the Republican wings of the Republocrat Party is in what they say they’re going to do. The Dems say they passed “health insurance.” Sure they did. They frittered away the public option long before they surrendered that particular battle in public; what they did is to require Americans to buy policies from the same corporations that have been mismanaging – for enormous profit – the insurance dollars people have been spending up to now.
The Repugnicans don’t want national health insurance at all; the Dems don’t want effective national health insurance. The only difference I see is cosmetic: we, the people of the US, wind up getting screwed either way.
The Dems have been playing the role they’ve been paid to play – pretending to be an alternative to the misrule of the George II administration. Actually, they’re doing as little as possible, leaving all that administration’s Constitution-busting laws, findings, and signing statements completely intact.
Look closely, folks: Obama and the rest of the Dems make a very pretty curtain, fluttering impotently in the breeze, and looking just bright-shiny enough that most people don’t look behind it. Those who do look back there see the same old power structure.
Whether we’re talking about a war on two fronts (which as a former Army officer, I know is insane) or a re-upped “PATRIOT” Act, the Dems’ version of government holds very little real difference from the Reps’ version.
So yes, the Democrats use very different-colored smoke in front of their mirrors. But behind the smoke, and behind the mirrors, you’ll find the same corporate-controlled corruption on both sides of the aisle.
Reagan’s “Zero Tolerance” put twenty times as many people in county jail nationwide. Travis County went from 276 inmates in 1978 to twenty thousand by the late eighties. Of course, whites were largely unaffected except for the massive costs of jail building with resultant loss of funding for public schools.