Friday September 21, 2018

Always Forward with Education & Reason

FacebookTwitterYoutube
Newsletter
Feeds:
Commentary
Blue Jean Nation "An election without winners?" PDF Print E-mail
Commentary
Written by Mike McCabe, Blue Jean Nation   
Friday, 28 October 2016 14:18

sick-partiesThis election may end with both of the parties in splinters, leaving American politics more up in the air than it has been in living memory.


ALTOONA, WI - Someone will be elected. But it’s possible no one will win.

In a presidential election featuring the two most unpopular major party nominees ever, it looks increasingly likely that Hillary Clinton will become our next president. It’s just as likely that winning the White House will actually hurt the Democrats’ overall standing with the public.

Some hate Hillary. Some can’t stand Bill. Some don’t care for political dynasties and resent another Clinton presidency. Some despise Democrats in general. Some are turned off by how the Democratic establishment treated Bernie Sanders’ candidacy as an unwelcome intrusion and stacked the deck to assure Hillary got the party’s nomination. Some are just exasperated by the choice they were given, between two intensely disliked celebrities. Some are in an anti-establishment mood and see Hillary as the living embodiment of the political establishment. All will hold it against the Democrats for not showing any respect for these kinds of feelings.

There is a very real possibility either or both of the parties could splinter.

Today’s Republican Party has become an uneasy alliance of wealthy capitalists, the religious right and working-class whites. What these three factions want the party to be is very different, and keeping any of them satisfied without granting them their every wish is growing more challenging by the day. Lose any of them and the party’s governing majority across the country starts to crumble.

In cobbling together this fragile coalition of strangers, Republican leaders and right-wing media personalities created a monster that has gone on a rampage and is tearing their party limb from limb. Both Wall Street and Main Street Republicans have to be hoping and praying for Trump to lose. It will be hard enough to stitch the mangled body back together if Trump goes down to defeat. If Trump wins, it’s his party. That would be the death of it.

The Democratic Party has lost much of its blue-collar following and is now left with a composite of highly educated professionals, racial minorities and progressive populists. The party’s leadership clearly has cast its lot with the professional class, as evidenced by the favored status of corporate Democrats like the Clintons within the party, and has actively sought to snuff out populist impulses. The teens and twenty-somethings of the millennial generation — the party’s future — were outraged by what party insiders did to sabotage the Sanders campaign. Sanders won far more votes from millennials than Clinton and Trump combined, and these young voters will not soon forget how the skids were greased for Clinton. Minority voters are taken for granted, but young black millennials in particular appear to be increasingly questioning their elders’ loyalty to the Democrats. All of this leaves the Democratic Party vulnerable to upheaval or even disintegration as well.

All of this leaves American politics more up in the air than it has been in living memory.

— Mike McCabe

****

Mike McCabe is the founder and president of Blue Jean Nation and author of Blue Jeans in High Places: The Coming Makeover of American Politics. Mike wants to hear from you.
Blue Jean Nation, P.O. Box 70788, Madison, WI 53707
Email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
Phone: 608-443-6086
http://www.BlueJeanNation.com/

Last Updated on Friday, 28 October 2016 14:36
 
A Crucial Vote You Haven’t Heard About PDF Print E-mail
Commentary
Written by Matt Rothschild, Wisconsin Democracy Campaign   
Tuesday, 25 October 2016 09:09

mta-madisonMADISON - For a while now, I’ve been trying to interest reporters in Wisconsin in one of the most under-covered story of the last year: the fact that we now have 78 communities – second only to Massachusetts – that have voted overwhelmingly that they want to amend the U.S. Constitution to proclaim that corporations aren’t persons and money isn’t speech.

On Nov. 8, Wisconsin citizens in 19 more communities can express themselves on this vital idea. Check it out here:

A crucial vote November 8 you haven’t heard about

In another promising development on the reform front, Assembly Democrats held a press conference last week laying out their ideas for redoing the disastrous campaign finance bill that passed last fall. We’ve added a couple of our own ideas, as you’ll see here:

Assembly Dems point way toward reform

Meanwhile, we keep reporting on the role of big money here in Wisconsin.

For instance, we discovered that outside groups – from the left and the right -- are outspending the candidates themselves by a long shot:

Special interest electioneering groups outspending legislative candidates

We also found out that an outside group that was created for Gov. Walker’s failed presidential run is still bringing in money, including $100,000 from one New York company:

Who’s still donating big bucks to Walker’s presidential support group?

And we noted that the vast majority of Republican legislators received a 100% on their report cards from Wisconsin Manufacturers & Commerce:

WMC honors legislators in its pocket

I hope this info is useful – or at least mildly interesting – to you.

Talk to you soon.

****

Matt Rothschild is the Executive Director of the Wisconsin Democracy Campaign, a non-partisan nonprofit watchdog group now in it's third decade of working for clean, open and honest government and reforms that make people matter more than money in politics.
Wisconsin Democracy Campaign, 203 South Paterson Street, Suite 100, Madison, WI 53703-3689, 608-255-4260, http://www.wisdc.org

Last Updated on Tuesday, 25 October 2016 09:35
 
What Do Rigged Elections Really Look Like? PDF Print E-mail
Commentary
Written by John N. Powers, Wittenberg   
Monday, 24 October 2016 10:15

capitol-nightPower to draw new legislative district boundaries after 2010 election gave GOP 60% of State Assembly seats with only 46% of the votes and resulted in restrictive voter ID laws, environmental laws written by corporate lobbyists, John Doe changes to protect politicians and attacks on labor.

Read more...
 
Blue Jean Nation "So long Abe" PDF Print E-mail
Commentary
Written by Mike McCabe, Blue Jean Nation   
Wednesday, 19 October 2016 11:48

lincoln-walks-awayLincoln defined government as “of the people, by the people, and for the people.” We need Lincoln’s spirit now more than ever.


ALTOONA, WI - No dictionary ever captured the essence of democracy’s meaning better than Abe Lincoln did in his legendary Gettysburg Address. Lincoln defined it as government “of the people, by the people, and for the people.”

For a century and a half after the Civil War the Republican Party was the party of Lincoln. Today’s GOP, however, has separated from Lincoln and the relationship seems destined to end in divorce. Modern-day Republicans have rejected Lincoln’s commitment to equality as they flirted for decades before eventually jumping in bed with white supremacy. They also have renounced Lincoln’s idea of democracy. For years now the likes of Rush Limbaugh have been saying over and over again that America is a republic, not a democracy. And dittoheads across the country dutifully repeat the mantra.

It’s silly to argue over whether America is one or the other when we were so obviously intended to be both. The U.S. was set up to be a democratic republic. The republic the founders gave us also can accurately be described as a representative democracy or a constitutional democracy. The founders wisely and ingeniously struck a balance between majority rule by elected representatives of the people and protection of individual and minority rights by rule of constitutional law. To say we are a republic but not a democracy is to not only disregard the true meaning of these words but also to disrespect the founders’ delicate balancing act.

They understandably wanted no more to do with monarchy and sought to replace a king’s rule with democracy. But they also were rightly fearful of mob rule and felt the need to temper the democratic will with “inalienable” rights for individuals that could not be voted out of existence. They did a better job designing the system than we have done taking care of it. While some among us waste time bickering about whether America is a republic or a democracy, evidence mounts that we may no longer be worthy of either name.

At a time when the republic faced perhaps the greatest threat to its continued existence, Lincoln gave the country not only the perfect definition of democracy but also reason to believe a new birth of freedom in America was possible. In our time, all of us — whether Republican, Democrat, independent or something else — need to channel our inner Lincolns and dedicate ourselves to a new birth of democracy and equality. We need to figure out how to restore government of the people, by the people and for the people. We need to imagine an economy that is of the people, by the people and for the people and strive to make it so.

We need Lincoln’s spirit now more than ever. The party of Lincoln has waved goodbye to Abe. The rest of us need to summon him back.

— Mike McCabe

Last Updated on Wednesday, 19 October 2016 12:01
 
<< Start < Prev 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 Next > End >>

Page 81 of 111
Copyright © 2018. Green Bay Progressive. Designed by Shape5.com