Wednesday, October 24, 2012

It's Really NOT the Economy Stupid!

The election for President of the United States is days away and my message for voters and candidates alike is the same; It's really not about the economy. It certainly isn't for me and I would venture to say it's not for the vast majority of my voting friends and colleagues.

I believe the economy will continue to improve and even the most dedicated GOP voter must concede that most economic indicators are pretty much going in a positive direction. Unemployment is going down, housing starts are going up, GDP growth is stable or slightly improving and even the usually pro GOP investment community sees things trending positively (http://www.fa-mag.com/fa-news/12548-investment-managers-see-positive-economic-indicators.html) Could it be better? Sure. Could the Republican economic model work faster? Maybe. I don't think so, I think there's very little empirical proof that 'supply-side' or 'trickle-down' economic policy creates jobs or reduces debt.  It heavily benefits the wealthy and promotes unprecedented income inequality, but I'm not an economist and there's so much partisanship in Washington I don't think either sides theories can get fully implemented. I think Americans are tough, savvy and resourceful so regardless of which party gains control of our government I believe we will rebound economically and both sides claims of economic ruin if the other gains control are so much sound and fury. All that being said, for me it wouldn't matter if one side had a distinct advantage on the economic front, it's not about the economy.

I support the Democratic Party because of their stands on social and moral issues. The 'Liberal' view of the future for these United States is simply better, more tolerant, more inclusive and I do not want to live in this GOP's America. The Republican vision for this country is unacceptable to my sense of fairness and counter intuitive to my obligation to my children as citizens of the planet earth.

It's very simple for me and although there are many tenets of the Republican Platform that I find
reprehensible but I will mention just a few that make me, as a sane, rational, compassionate person run screaming from the Conservative party. They are the indisputable, entrenched positions of the Republican Party in this country and I believe an embarrassment to this nation.

1) The GOP wants to pass a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage. They want to permanently add to the defining document of this country a religious definition of marriage as being between a man and a woman.  I am not interested in living in a country that imposes restrictions on whom a person can love, that treats certain members of its citizenry as 'less than' just because of some archaic notion.  It is absolutely unacceptable to me to discriminate against a group of people or an individual based on who they share their bed with, period.  There is a separation of church and state in this country and banning gay marriage is 100% driven by religious edict and doctrine. There is absolutely no economic, security or any other reason to ban gay marriage aside from religious zealotry. Americans are better than that, my children deserve better than to live in a country that discriminates against its own because of some ridiculous idea that we are a Christian nation and need to adhere to Christian moral principals. It's discrimination pure and simple and this country is based on the concept of fairness and tolerance.

2) The GOP wants to overturn Roe vs Wade and ban abortion in this country. They have proposed personhood amendments, believe life begins at conception and want to eliminate Planned Parenthood. We've heard their members say there are 'legitimate rapes' and as recently as yesterday 'pregnancy caused by rape is God's will', well not any God I am interested in following. For a party that promotes 'individualism' and wants smaller government to propose over 300 pieces of legislation, by far more than any other issue on their docket, legislating a woman's body is not only hypocritical it's another demonstration of discrimination. Add the fact that the majority of the GOP, including VP candidate Paul Ryan, opposed the Lilly Ledbetter Act guaranteeing fair pay for women and you simply cannot argue that the Republican Party doesn't view women as something other than equal.

3) One of the more disturbing things to me about the Conservative agenda and something that I absolutely view as  treason against this country are their efforts at voter suppression. No less than 29 laws have been proposed in 19 states by conservatives restricting access to the voting booth. They have been struck down by the judiciary, including the US Supreme Court, time after time as being discriminatory to minorities, seniors, students and the poor.  Study after study has shown that voter fraud does not exist in this country in more than an infinitesimal amount (http://www.brennancenter.org/content/section/category/allegations_of_voter_fraud) All of the GOP efforts to restrict voting impact traditionally Democratic voting blocks from redistricting to restrictions on early voting. Since there is no evidence of voter fraud the only motivation for limiting voter rights is stop people that might vote for the other guys from voting. The GOP is undeniably trying to ensure that fewer Democratic leaning people get to vote and any attempt to deny that fact is quite simply a lie. This country is based on voting rights, on the right of its people, ALL of it's people, to elect people that represent them and on our ability to dictate to our government how we will be governed. Making it harder for people to vote is not anything our founding fathers would support and it's certainly not patriotic. When the motives are so obviously political, designed purely to grab or maintain political power by discriminating against other Americans I believe voter suppression to be a crime against the state.

I could add Republican obstructionism, environmental positions and other conservative tenets that make it impossible for me to support them but these top my list. They top my list because they demonstrate a platform of intolerance and discrimination separating us rather than uniting us. What happens to my money? That is the least of my worries if the Republicans are setting the moral compass for this country. That is why I will continue to do everything in my power to see that the current Republican vision of America remains just that, a vision it's not the economy.  Because if the Republican vision of this country is reality, then this is no longer my America and it's certainly not our America-it's theirs and I don't want any part of it.

1 comment:

  1. Bravo, my friend! It is not about the economy and when we act from our principals and vision we move toward a more just society that will right itself in all ways.

    ReplyDelete