Democrats & Liberals Archives

Abramoff Is A Symptom Not The Problem

Are we to believe that the United States government is still the same Representative Democracy our forefathers envisioned so many years ago? There are some of us who feel that the United States government is failing to represent those who vote in favor of those who pay for influence.
Those of us who speak out against our corrupt and morally bankrupt government are accused of lacking the patriotic spirit to stand for America during the “War on Terror.” We are constantly reminded that 9/11 has changed this nation. The changes that I continue to see have nothing to do with 9/11 or patriotism. The changes being made to this nation are primarily to benefit the wealthy 18% of the citizens of the United States and to usurp the rights, financial stability and civil liberties of the people who do not fall into that category.
Our government has become a tool for large corporations who disregard environmental and social issues in favor of their bottom line.


This is our government serving the people:

Our government officials, in an attempt to save $40 billion over five years, cut programs to low-income seniors, poor college students and families that are having a difficult enough time making ends meet. I thought the Republicans, who dominate Congress were the party of "family values"? Where are the Democrats?

Our government cuts money needed for child support payment enforcement. Wouldn't you think the Republican dominated Congress, who claim to be" pro-life", would want these little lives they want to save to have financial support from both parents? Where are the Democrats?

Our government officials want to include provisions to the bill that would delay certain supplimental security income payments for people who are poor and disabled. This is compassionate conservatism? Once again where are the Democrats?

Our government officials want to cut funding for college financial aid. "No child left behind" until you want to achieve the goal of a college education. Where is the public public outrage from the Democrats?

All of this while the Federal Government is giving tax breaks to the wealthiest Americans.
These are the same officials that have had to duck and dodge scandal after scandal recently. Those of us who speak out against the government are bad Americans, not the corrupt government officials who sell their influence to the highest bidder and waste our tax dollars by inserting "Pork" projects for friends and associates in every bill that passes through the house and congress.

They are spending hundreds of billions of our tax dollars and thousands of human lives are being lost in a war thats' main causation was a series of manipulations of the American people by those who we voted into office.
This same federal government plays on peoples fears of terror attacks to continue this manipulation in an unprecedented attempt to diminish the voice and freedoms that so many before us have fought and died for.
The federal government is allowed to ignore science so that those corporations who pollute our world can continue to do so with impunity.
Our government can openly support torture, eavesdropping on it's citizens, media propoganda and the wholesale dismantling of our civil liberties and we are supposed to line up and be good little patriots?
We must reclaim our government not apologize for it. We must show those who control the government that their wealth is no match for our numbers. If all of us speak up we will be heard. If we allow this government to continue to fall back on the "partisan" excuses that have plagued this administration and are constantly used by many members of congress and the senate, they will not change. We must make them change. We must rid ourselves of this form of Democracy and bring back the Democracy that represents the American people, not just those with wealth whose greed and lack of respect for anything other than money have purchased and changed our government.


Posted by Andre M. Hernandez at January 3, 2006 11:39 AM
Comments
Comment #110132

Andre, you rock!

“Where are the Democrats?”

They’ve been hijacked by the “Democratic Leadership Council”, better known as Republican Lite. This is the problem. Those who truly stand on the Left side of the isle know we need a true opposition party that is actually comprised of Liberals.

Posted by: Adrienne at January 4, 2006 12:28 PM
Comment #110144

yes, liberals and progressives who are not afraid of those labels but instead proudly proclaim their allegiance to changing the status quo for the better of all.

Posted by: macsonix at January 4, 2006 1:22 PM
Comment #110161

Well, the republicats and the democans, oops, a little freudian slip there, the republicans and the democrats are all getting richer, and the non-politicans get poorer. Where is OUR outrage? We do not need the democrats to speak for us, we need to speak for us. We need a grass roots group to get together and put together a viable ticket on an independent party. A real candidate, NOT Ralph Nader. We need someone who will speak up for the little guy, someone who understand the need to balance the needs of the environment with big business, the need to balance a budget (!), the needs of americans that cannot make it on their own and are not raping the system like some rich that we all know and hate. A candidate, that understands that we need to do something about the greenhouse effect sooner than later, a candidate that can work with the rich as well as the poor. And we need that candidate to come out of the woodwork soon!
toni

Posted by: Antonia Reed at January 4, 2006 2:19 PM
Comment #110196

Great post- all perfectly true. The Problem? “they’re all dishonest bums, except my guy/gal” One party control is not helping matters, in my opinion.

Posted by: Steve Miller at January 4, 2006 3:45 PM
Comment #110214

Antonia,

I agreed with you until you started bringing the environmentalist religion into it.

Otherwise I would have suggested you checking out the Libertarian party, but now I think you are going to have to settle on the Green party until some other party who clings to that religion comes along for you.

Posted by: Rhinehold at January 4, 2006 4:28 PM
Comment #110219

I agree that the two party system is not working. However, I am not sure that forming a grass roots (sic, another political party) is the answer. I live in Florida where there are currently something like 18 registered political parties. How can any of us hope to make a difference when the whole system is being dilluted by all these self-interest parties? I see nothing wrong with focusing on building a stronger Democratic party, however any such effort would have to embrace those of us whose ideaology can be defined as somewhere between centrist and leftist! If in order to be “accepted” by the party “faithfuls” one need be identifed as being an ultra leftist, the party will lose the support of many disenfranchised democrats. I recently changed my affiliation from Independent to Deomocrat because I was tired of being left out of the process. If I an snubbed because my beliefs fall more in line with Bill Clinton’s than John Kerry’s or John Dean’s I would feel that I had wasted my time and energy. But that is just one man’s opinion

Posted by: Rich Schmelke at January 4, 2006 4:37 PM
Comment #110241

I personally think that a sudden and nationwide exponential increase in the number of viable political parties would greatly and positively affect what passes for representation in DC and in the state capitals. How can two parties, with very few discernable differences, who are both in bed with mammoth corporate interests possibly serve the will of so many millions of people?

Posted by: macsonix at January 4, 2006 5:26 PM
Comment #110242

oh, and by the way Rhinehold…it’s not a damn religion. It’s scientific fact that’s agreed on by an overwhelming majority of experts. Of course you may not agree with this if you were one of the experts present at Uncle Dicks’ Secret Energy Summit.

Posted by: macsonix at January 4, 2006 5:29 PM
Comment #110249

Yes, where are the democrats? This is a good question and has been a good question. how long will people stand back and say they are democrats, maybe the third time a republican steels an election! Intelagent human beings will start to realise the democrats are as much to blame as the republicans, it’s time for a third party!!!

Posted by: Fred at January 4, 2006 5:46 PM
Comment #110255

max:

I personally think that a sudden and nationwide exponential increase in the number of viable political parties would greatly and positively affect what passes for representation in DC and in the state capitals.

The problem is that if you get an exponential increase in the number of parties, you won’t get the viability that you want. It’s hard enough to introduce just ONE more viable party into the mix.

Look at what has happened recently: Clinton beat Bush 41 in some measure because of Ross Perot siphoning off votes. Bush 43 beat Gore in some measure because of Nader siphoning off votes. In neither case was there any real danger of the third party winning the election. Instead, it played a spoiler role only.

What we need is a viable third party. The only place I can see such viability coming from would be in the political middle….say perhaps a party of McCain, Lieberman and the Senate’s gang of 12 who banded together to head of the filibuster/nuclear option issue. Not to say that will happen, but I see more viability in the middle than on any fringe, which is where I see the Greens and the Libertarians.

Posted by: joebagodonuts at January 4, 2006 6:21 PM
Comment #110304

Wow, was I invoking an environmental religion? What I was trying to say is that the libertarians are mostly what I am about, but they don’t get out there with a real candidate. And the Green party can’t stand having someone represent them that has to deal with big business.
But I do understand that having too many parties dilutes the system, and I have to put away my plan for that. I just can’t stand the fact that there is no REAL difference between the democrats and the republicans. That was why I had said a grass roots effort to…I dunno. Maybe shake one of these existing parties up! to make someone realize that we (the general public) want real choices in 2008.
I could not stand voting for McCain. That man lost me when he sucked up to Bush after all the underhanded whispering that the Bush Campaign did to him. They attacked him for his temper, his lack of stability (oh yeah, that’s what we’re getting with Bush, for sure, stability, uh huh!), his wife, his supposed illegitimate child…wow, and now he is kissing Bush’s a**. Can’t stand that!
Come on, people. Let’s all stand up and say ENOUGH! Let’s say, we are disgusted by what is happening. And maybe more of the same, but with a different mascot, is not what we want.
What is happening with Edwards?
toni

Posted by: Antonia Reed at January 5, 2006 12:26 AM
Comment #110307

The Democrats are not missing now nor have they ever been. They are fighting with all ther might against this Republican conservative neo-con governmental perversion that has come to full power with Bush. The stark reality, however, is that Democrats are a small enough minority in both Houses that they cannot accomplish anything by themselves. They are limited only to speaking out vehementy against the decisions of the majority which they continuously do. In the Senate, on rare occasions, they have have been joined by the few moderate Repblicans there to pursue and enact beneficial and honorable objectives.. In the House bi-partisan support is a lost cause. In both houses the Republican leadership has deliberately kept Democraats out of the loop because they have the power to do it.

If a change is truly wanted then enough Democrats must be elected so that they have majority control of at least one of the Houses of Congress, or better yet, both. Without that happening the Government will continue to be controled by the Republican Conservatives who are devoid of any Social, ethical or moral conscence and the secret and evil agenda of Bush will continue with their full support to the detriment of America and her people.

Posted by: Richard at January 5, 2006 1:10 AM
Comment #110310

The development of a viable 3rd party most certainly is a good idea and inject some much needed vitality in Congress. Unfortunately, it is a virtual certainty that it will never happen The truth is that there is much more agressive dissension, lack of trust and unwillingness to work together between them than between the Rep’s and Dem’s. If you are a progressive and vote for a non electable third party insted of an electaable Dem much closer to you views than the Rep.,in reality you are not voting for your convictions, but, in fact, voting Rep. and directly against what you believe by subtraction. For all that it is denied ,it was those 90K Nader voters in Florida most of whom would have voted Dem otherwise, who voted for an unelectable candidate, it what cost Gore the Presidency. Had their votes been Dem, even with all the contrived irregularites by the State Rep.’s, there would never have been any election doubt because Gore would have had gotten an unquestionable majority of the votes and been elected President.

The Dem’s have lost their vitality not because they are all “Ultra” left, but because they have abandoned those Populist ideals, which are always Liberal and Progressive, that made them great. In additon they have allowed the use of certain “hot” words: abortion, creationalism, faith, national security, to name just a few, to be substituted as defining epithets of party ideals which is total misrepresentation and false. Unless and until these problems are aggresively confronted and solved, Dem’s have an uphill fight.

Posted by: Richard at January 5, 2006 2:11 AM
Comment #110346
The only place I can see such viability coming from would be in the political middle….say perhaps a party of McCain, Lieberman and the Senate’s gang of 12

JBOD, that’s pretty good. But what I think is more likely is that a DLC Democrat will take the center (sorry Adrienne).

If Democrats want to win, we need to capture the center like Clinton did. I’m a DLC guy in that I believe it’s possible for the government to support business AND provide a secure social safety net. It’s not a zero-sum game.

The best thing Democrats can do is run a DLC Democrat and capture the center — after all, what are the far left going to do, vote Republican? Vote for a liberal third party candidate that ensures a Republican win? Not this time.

BTW, Richard is absolutely right that Democrats haven’t gone missing.

Posted by: American Pundit at January 5, 2006 10:15 AM
Comment #110354

Some People…

NCLB is an attempt to eliminate public schools in the long run, in the short run it is designed to transfer money to private, charter and religous schools. NCLB encourages churches to take federal money to tutor public school children.

President Bush consistently underspent what was authorized by Congress.

Environmentalists? Amazingly to me, as a Christian I believe that this earth is a gift from God. I cannot undertand how the conservative-religous right would treat such a gift with such contempt! If I passed an heirloom down to my children and they treated it this way I would not be happy!!!!

I am an older student (46 y.o.) and during the last election the college Republicans were running around pasting signs say Bush cared about college students and would increase Pell Grants by $345 or some such garbage. Big deal. Where is it?

Comapssionate Conservativism I have waited for for 5 years. My conclusion? It is compassion for no bid contracts in Iraq to a certain company.

As far as the Conservatives believe, life begins at conception and governmental interference should end at birth. They only care about the intervening 9 months.

Posted by: Darren7160 at January 5, 2006 10:30 AM
Comment #110363

somebody explain to me how an infusion of perhaps five or more various new, truly viable, truly funded political parties (in the European model: think Labor, Libertarian, Tories, etc.) wouldn’t take care of the third party as spoiler effect mentioned above.

Posted by: macsonix at January 5, 2006 10:49 AM
Comment #110391

AP:
“But what I think is more likely is that a DLC Democrat will take the center (sorry Adrienne).”

Will take? That is who has been running the Democratic Party for a long time AP — and they’re getting very poor grades in Congress from average Americans as a result.
Let’s take just one example: The Bankruptcy Bill — do you really think that the majority of those on the left can approve when their Democratic representatives vote for a bankruptcy bill that was written by the credit card companies? No sir, they recognize it for exactly what it is — corruption. A vote that had been bought. Being sold out by their own party.
Why do you suppose that so many people have been turning away from the Dems and choosing to vote Reform Party (Nader) or for the Greens? Because a lot of people on the left no longer recognize the Democrats as people who are willing represent their interests, but instead are going gladly along with the corporate buy-out of America.

“If Democrats want to win, we need to capture the center like Clinton did. I’m a DLC guy in that I believe it’s possible for the government to support business AND provide a secure social safety net. It’s not a zero-sum game.”

I believe it’s possible too, but that it is a fine line that must be walked in order to protect the interests of both the American people and Business. The trouble is, a long time ago they stepped over that middle line, and it is clear that they have done so not for the good of their constitutents, but because it’s a real good way to allow Big Business to fill their election coffers in exchange for their votes.
Why do think I like Howard Dean so much? Because he is both fiscally conservative and socially liberal (things I very much approve of), and he realizes that taking too much money from corporations has been undermining the whole purpose of the Democratic party. That’s why he believes in raising most of the money the party needs from the very people whose interests they’re supposed to be protecting. And he is proving that those small amounts can quickly add up and be just as effective as taking giant chunks of campaign money from corporate fat cats. He knows it’s no good for Democrats to have their votes bought, and he knows that doing it his way might allow them to continue to walk that fine line protecting the interests of both the people and encouraging business growth — without having to fall off on either side.
These DLC folks don’t agree. They’ve been doing nothing but make concessions to business at the expense of average Americans (like NAFTA and CAFTA for example) but most liberal voters strongly disapprove of those agreements because they’ve hurt the nation — and they are turning away from the Democrats as a result.
Just my opinions — and I am painfully aware that there are many Dems, like yourself, who aren’t in agreement with me.

Posted by: Adrienne at January 5, 2006 12:16 PM
Comment #110419

Adrienne,

“The Bankruptcy Bill — do you really think that the majority of those on the left can approve when their Democratic representatives vote for a bankruptcy bill that was written by the credit card companies? No sir, they recognize it for exactly what it is — corruption. A vote that had been bought. Being sold out by their own party.”

Excellent example!

The Democrats can get their message across to the American people. They could go on television and go over every destructive decision this administration has made. Every hurtful bill or funding cut that the republicans have voted for.
Why don’t they?
Why is it that so few Democrats speak up that the right can label Clinton, Pellosi and Dean the “handfull of partisan liberals that always bitch about something?” Where are the rest of them?

Posted by: Andre M. Hernandez at January 5, 2006 1:50 PM
Comment #110473

well, Adrienne got it right - they are too busy filling their coffers with corporate dollars for re-election. And taking a stand on anything or making waves about anything your pesky constituents might care about is just too risky when all you have to do is raise funds with business leaders and keep an eye on the poll data so you can finally speak the @#$%^& up when the coast is clear and you’re sure to minimize any feather ruffling.

Posted by: macsonix at January 5, 2006 5:43 PM
Comment #110546

Adrienne, I like Dean too. As governor, he was friendly to business and strengthened his state’s social safety net. There are DLC Democrats who go too far, like Lieberman, but you can’t blame all the Democratic Party’s woes on the DLC.

The fact is, most American’s politics are closer to the DLC than to Ralph Nader. Check out the DLC website and see what they stand for. It’s pretty good.

Andre, Democrats are on TV all the time going over the destructive decisions this administration has made. Sundays are probably the best day to cath it, but you’ll see ‘em on the news most nights.

Posted by: American Pundit at January 6, 2006 12:00 AM
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