Wednesday, April 13, 2011

The Anti-Reagan, Government Can Work When Done Right

Since I've been on an Obama bashing binge of late, I will refrain today after watching the guy I voted for step up to the mic. I was impressed.  I liked what he had to say even though he was a bit short on details. What made me take notice is that for the first time in two-and-a-half years, he finally called out the Republicans for what they are. FINALLY! He even used the word "progressive" for team blue! He called the Republicans vision of America "deeply pessimistic." He continued, "The fact is, their vision is less about reducing the deficit than it is about changing the basic social compact in America. As Ronald Reagan's own budget director said, there's nothing 'serious' or 'courageous' about this plan. There's nothing serious about a plan that claims to reduce the deficit by spending a trillion dollars on tax cuts for millionaires and billionaires. There's nothing courageous about asking for sacrifice from those who can least afford it and don't have any clout on Capitol Hill. And this is not a vision of the America I know." Invoking Saint Ronnie's name within this context was brilliant in my opinion. The right still loves to wag him around like he should be mentioned with Lincoln.

"Just as we must find more savings in domestic programs, we must do the same in defense." YES! 47% of the world's spending on military is us. Our spending has doubled since 2001. He added, "We need to not only eliminate waste and improve efficiency and effectiveness, but conduct a fundamental review of America's missions, capabilities, and our role in a changing world." Is he suggesting that we shouldn't be the world's police? Stay with it Prez.

"But let me be absolutely clear: I will preserve these health care programs as a promise we make to each other in this society. I will not allow Medicare to become a voucher program that leaves seniors at the mercy of the insurance industry, with a shrinking benefit to pay for rising costs. I will not tell families with children who have disabilities that they have to fend for themselves. We will reform these programs, but we will not abandon the fundamental commitment this country has kept for generations. That includes, by the way, our commitment to Social Security. While Social Security is not the cause of our deficit, it faces real long-term challenges in a country that is growing older."I'm fairly sure Faux Newz will edit this part out. Wouldn't want their elderly viewers to hear this little tidbit. Beck, O'Reilly and Hannity will be doing some fancy editing tonight emphasizing when he said he won't renew Bush era tax cuts for the wealthy.

"Worst of all, this is a vision that says even though America can't afford to invest in education or clean energy; even though we can't afford to care for seniors and poor children, we can somehow afford more than $1 trillion in new tax breaks for the wealthy. Think about it. In the last decade, the average income of the bottom 90% of all working Americans actually declined. The top 1% saw their income rise by an average of more than a quarter of a million dollars each. And that's who needs to pay less taxes? They want to give people like me a two hundred thousand dollar tax cut that's paid for by asking thirty three seniors to each pay six thousand dollars more in health costs? That's not right, and it's not going to happen as long as I'm President."

"We cannot afford one trillion dollars in tax cuts for every millionaire and billionaire in our society. We can't afford it. And I refuse to renew them again," Good, that's what the majority of Americans want. It's going to be a messy fight, but if he holds strong and frames this correctly, and fellow Democrats don't wilt, people will line up behind him and take this country forward.

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