Thoughts from a Yellow Dog Democrat living in Olympia, in the great BLUE state of Washington

I am a liberal because it is the political philosophy of freedom and equality. And I am a progressive because it is the political path to a better future. And I am a Democrat because it is the political party that believes in freedom, equality and progress. -- Digby

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

I ALMOST Agree with Reich

Robert Reich, my favorite DOL Secretary, has an article in the American Prospect where he expresses a GREAT "to do" list for Dems:

Cut the Alternative Minimum Tax so it doesn't slam the middle class, and roll back the Bush tax cuts for the rich.

Open Medicare to every American who needs affordable health insurance, and use Medicare's resulting huge bargaining clout to reduce drug prices.

Bar companies from deducting from their corporate income taxes any executive pay in excess of $1 million a year.

Raise the minimum wage and index it to inflation.

Reform Social Security by eliminating the ceiling on payments so people earning over $100,000 a year pay the same percent of their income as everyone else.

Raise fuel economy standards, eliminate subsidies to the oil companies, and use the money instead for basic R&D in non-carbon based energy.

Renegotiate the Kyoto protocols on greenhouse gas emissions.

And while we're at it, reaffirm the Geneva Conventions.

I like everything on his list -- BUT he recommends that we avoid trying to expose the malfeasance and nonfeasance of the Bush Administration -- find out who really knew what and when with regard to weapons of mass destruction, Abu Graahb, Katrina, payoffs to Abramoff, and all the other rot.

His reasoning:
There's no point digging up more dirt. Bush isn't running again. John McCain, the Republican's most likely choice to replace him, has distanced himself so far from the administration that no amount of dirt will soil him. Besides, the public and the media are already suffering from outrage fatigue. And the Democrats wouldn't be credible, anyway. It will be easy for Republicans to dismiss their efforts as more of the same old partisan bickering. The fact is, the public is sick of mud-slinging.

I'd love to see Bush and Cheney go down in flames but I fear the long term consequences of that path versus the short term benefits. I say let's take a higher road and not investigate the Administration BUT we MUST -- AT A MINIMUM -- do a thorough investigation and enforcement on all private companies that screwed us in Iraq and during Katrina with their no-bid, no-perform, no accountability contracts. The ones that didn't deliver, provided contaminated water to our troops, over charged, built shitty (literally) buildings in Iraq, drove empty trucks back and forth in Iraq just to pad the bill, didn't provide Katrina clean up as contracted, didn't show up with ice and transportation, had questionable accounting, unaccounted for missing cash, and so on and so on -- need to pay the American people back all the money they robbed from us. We cannot become accessories after the fact and forgive and forget this -- otherwise they'll just do it to us again and again.

Remember what Bush said during his first campaign -- "It's YOUR money!"


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