It would be easier to pay off the national debt overnight than to neutralize the long-range effects of our national stupidity ~ Frank Zappa (12/21/1940 to 12/4/1993) an American composer, electric guitarist, record producer, and film director.
The exchange below recently took place on a "moderate" blog I frequent. A progressive blogger that my "followers" most likely have heard of, LORD TRUTH 101 (what Joe Kelly called himself at the time), made an observation, and a Conservative blogger who frequents said moderate blog responded. BTW, the Con blogger (a guy who doesn't actually have his own blog) refers to President Obama as "Obie"... a term of endearment, I'm sure...
LORD TRUTH 101: I'd love to see real progressive policies enacted. Alas; the Right's propaganda machine is too powerful. The sheeple need their daily fix of lies.
Rusty Shackleford: just what do you consider "real progressive policies?" You guys continue to bitch and moan about Obie being too centrist yet you never ever say what these progressive wonderment cures actually are.
LORD TRUTH 101: Single payer national health insurance that takes the burden of health insurance expense off business. Leaving Iraq and Afghanistan. Actually enforcing labor law and safety regulations ... We've had 40 years of supply side nonsense that led to a 14 trillion dollar deficit. Your answer is keep doing the same thing. You're nuts dude.
My 2 Cents: I believe the most important thing we need to do is pass some serious campaign finance reform legislation. Without it the Republicans will just continue to buy the elections (Something they have been doing for some time, but made much worse by the recent Citizens United SCOTUS decision). Key to accomplishing that feat includes re-electing President Obama to a second term - so he can appoint 1 or 2 more Supreme Court justices - which will tip the balance of the court back to representing the people, instead of the wealthy and corporations.
Return to pre-Reagan tax rates (when the top bracket was 70 percent). Slash the military budget. Withdraw from Iraq and Afghanistan. Medicare for everyone (The health insurers should be put out of business). Lower the Social Security retirement age - this will free up jobs for younger workers and thus lower the unemployment rate.
End privatization - anything the private sector can do a profit the government can do for less. Withdraw from NAFTA and the WTO. Bring manufacturing back to the US using tariffs and the tax code (penalize, not reward companies for shipping jobs overseas). Go after rich tax cheats who hide their money overseas. Pass Employee Free Choice legislation and abolish so-called "right to work" laws - this will put more money in the hands of workers (more of whom will be able to negotiate for fair pay) and stimulate the economy through the resulting increased demand (DEMAND drives an economy, not supply. Supply side economics IS nonsense).
In short, I agree with my esteemed colleague LORD TRUTH 101 - people who vote conservative because they think the Con policies will work ARE nuts. We've been following them since Reagan was elected and they clearly haven't worked. What they have done is make the rich richer and everyone else poorer. Which actually was their goal - so actually they did work, just not for the majority of us.
See also: The big lie: Attacking the Debt is Good Politics by Steve Kornac, Salon 11/11/2010
Dead Link Notice (9/25/2014): The blog of Joe Kelly (AKA Joe Truth, AKA "Truth 101", AKA Joe Hagstrom) is no longer accessible and any link to it (above) now displays a error message that says the blog is "open to invited readers only".