Tuesday, December 5, 2006

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The Campaign for America's Future... and its enemies

In what I am convinced is a plot to make me reject Brink Lindsey's efforts to get libertarians and liberals to kiss on the first date, I was sent the following press release:

More than 100 leaders, speaking for dozens of progressive organizations, assembled today to organize a campaign to back major portions of the House Democrats' early legislative agenda. The attending groups represent an expansion of a regular meeting of progressive leaders known as the "Tuesday Group." Organizers said support for key elements of the agenda represents a down payment on a more ambitious agenda for change promised by the new majority in Congress.

More than 40 groups, led by Americans United, U.S.Action and the Campaign for America's Future, met to outline plans to press House and Senate members to vote for a minimum wage increase, negotiating for lower drug prices, student loan interest rate reductions, and a repeal of tax benefits for the oil and gas industry to pay for public investment in alternative energy sources. These agenda items are part of House Speaker-elect Nancy Pelosi's agenda for the first 100 legislative hours of the House next month.

The groups devoted almost their entire meeting to building participation and momentum for the coalition effort, known as CAN - Change America Now. The campaign is growing as groups turn their post-election attention to moving an immediate agenda, which they see as a down payment on a larger agenda for creating an economy that works for working people.

"Democrats ran the most populist elections in memory," said Robert Borosage, co-director of the Campaign for America's Future and a co-chair of today's Tuesday Group meeting. "We need to make sure the Democrats deliver on their promises, and that the 100 Hours Agenda is just the first step in creating an economy that works for working people. The 100 Hours Agenda gives Democrats a chance to show that we support positive policies for change, and we're not just against the Republican agenda." (emphasis added)

I should add that I do think the Campaign for America's future is likely correct in its assertion that "Democrats ran the most populist elections in memory." For support, click on this Stan Greenberg analysis of the midterm exit polls, as well as Public Citizen's report, "Election 2006: No to Staying the Course on Trade."

posted by Dan on 12.05.06 at 07:12 PM


Although in theory I am with you, in practice I am hard pressed to refute the following:

I mean, in theory unbalanced benefits of any given policy would effect a positive effect across the entire economy, but it doesn't work out that way. does it?

If I were forced to give a simplistic definition of globalization, I'd call it the normalization of barriers to entry.

posted by: foolishmortal on 12.05.06 at 07:12 PM [permalink]

My HTML skills apparently suck, so I will include the link intended to follow " the following" in the previous post in plain text:

posted by: foolishmortal on 12.05.06 at 07:12 PM [permalink]

What do you mean, rejecting kissing on the first date? Didn't you come out for Kerry and Obama last time around?

posted by: William Sjostrom on 12.05.06 at 07:12 PM [permalink]

Dan, the fact of the matter is the President's domestic agenda stalled after 2004 because he focused on a libertarian ideals: social security reform and immigration reform. Besides Iraq, the foreign policy issues that hurt him and Republicans the most were the Dubai port deal and free trade.

The fact is he has done arguably as much for libertarians or more than for social conservatives yet many of you are completely disloyal.

If you want, go to Democratic party. While the intellectual firepower will be missed in the Republican party since many GOP-leaning academics are of the libertarian mindset, the overall loss in vote will be minute.

Libertarians have an unrealistic view of how government works (since many have never worked in it) and seem to believe that "perfect is the enemy of the good." While I have some libertarian inclinations, I am tired of libertarians griping all the time.

If you actually advocated for you viewpoints rather than criticizing Republicans for not advancing it (even though they do), you might actually get somewhere. Over 80% of the American people want a raise in the minimum wage, most people want direct negotiations with drug companies, less trade, universal healthcare, and no private social security accounts.

The Republicans have taken a beating for standing against many of these things and then libertarians have the nerve to contemplate jumping shipping. I would enjoy seeing how much better you do with Democrats.

posted by: Ian on 12.05.06 at 07:12 PM [permalink]

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