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   EDITORIAL: There'll Be No Joy In Saying "I Told You So"

EDITORIAL:

The Problem with the Democrats

Well, the election is over, and Democrats are making moan. If only they’d look in the mirror: they’d see they bear a lot of responsibility for the sorry shape their party is in, not to mention this nation.

But so far, Democrats have no unifying vision for social progress in a fiscally sensible way. Democrats need to use the best thinkers to develop a new societal vision and plan, making use of best practices in the best run countries. And they need to use War College (and Maciavellian) methods to successfully compete with Republicans, organizing their efforts like the RNC and Heritage Foundation 'networks' do so well.

The “vision thing” needs to include healthcare's out-of-control costs and the uninsured. Highest-profit, un-regulated healthcare that Republicans want is definitely NOT the answer. So Democrats vision thing needs to include socialized healthcare, but with controls limiting malpractice liability as well as limiting health and insurance industry profits.

Plus the vision thing must include much better regulating of all interstate "infrastructures" to avoid boom-bust business cycles. Recent telecom over-building resulted in huge debt and bankruptcies that have seriously damaged our economy, trashing retirement investments of millions of people in the process.

To call this "creative destruction" and be proud of it is the hallmark of stupid capitalism. (Note that, by comparison, the partially socialized countries in Europe and Asia avoided similar debt, and more of their citizens have broadband Internet at half the cost!)

Democrats also need to get a grip on "Free Trade" before we import ourselves into ever-greater unemployment. Two billion low-wage people in Asia (a third of the world's population) suddenly began competing with the US for jobs. Now we have to manage job transition to protect domestic employment levels in well-chosen business sectors.

And let's not forget the rapidly growing crisis of pollution and the environment, and the wrong-headed oil-centric Bush-Cheney 'plan'. We have to plan our way away from oil use! Our priorities should be conservation through greater efficiency of vehicles and electric motors, renewable energy, and alternative energy for combustion engines - including hydrogen. Europe has recognized these as their focus for the future, and we should too.

Instead of strategizing and communicating the most important problems and solutions to the public, the Democrats have ceded issues and discussion to Republicans. Democrats just say “me too” to the Republicans and to the public. This is a huge strategic error.

Yes, the election of 2002 is a wake-up call. But remember: 80% of those eligible to vote in this election did not vote for Republicans. A whole lot of people are dissatisfied with both major parties.

There’s plenty of outreach and fence-mending to be done, but there’s potential for positive change and growth in public involvement. And if it doesn’t come from the disappointing Democrats, and doesn’t come from the Bush neoliberal Republicans, it just may come from other sources: the Greens, Constitution Party, Libertarians, Democratic Socialists of America, Natural Law Party, Reform Party, or (horrors!) Communist Party.


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This story was published on November 9, 2002.
  
NOVEMBER 2002
LOCAL NEWS
·NEWS BRIEFS
·CALENDARS:
· Hearing and Speech Agency to move to Seton Business Park
· Homewood Is Again ‘At Home’ on Charles Street
· Nonprofit Umbrella Group Calls for Increased State Support to Address Housing Crisis
· Legal Service Providers in Financial Crisis
· Poll Shows Marylanders Want Environmental Protections
ART & ENTERTAINMENT
·Book Review: LBJ at His Best and Worst
·Entertainment ‘Hot Picks’
·Book Review: War and Globalization by Michel Chossudovsky
SPEAKING OUT
·EDITORIALS:
·LETTERS
·Islamophobia: The New Menace
·Can God Bless America? Only if We Repent
· An Open Letter to America from a New Zealander
·Open Letter to Mayor Martin O'Malley and the Baltimore City Council
· Open Letter to The Economist Magazine
· Open-Ended Ballot Questions Deserve Defeat
· Why your vote won't matter
·The New Black Codes
· Muslims First, Citizens Second
·The Silent End of Memorials?
·US & Iraq: Who's Deterring Whom?
·Words of Wisdom from Arundhati Roy
·BATCH #4: Responses to the “Open Letter to America from a Canadian”
·The Politics of Low Attendance
·Guns! Guns! Guns!
·Nonprofits Sponsor Roundtable on Religious Persecution and Refugees
NEWS MEDIA CRITIQUE
·Media Shortchange Coverage of State Legislatures
·A Free Press, but for Whom?
·Times, NPR Change Their Take on DC Protests
·Miller (held over): In the Wake of 9-11, the American Press Has Embraced a ‘Demented Caesarism’
NATION & WORLD
· Harvard Study: Does Your Vote Count? Depends on Where You Cast It.
· Sonar and Marine Life Don’t Mix
· Human Rights Watch Faults US for Backing Afghan Warlord
· Logging Bill Before Congress Is Called “Political Armageddon for Forests”
· U.S Financial Aid To Israel: Figures, Facts, and Impact
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