What Would A Democratic Populist Look Like?

14947741_10157710928430721_4280820376988400369_nI know I’m sort of posting this twice. But the other post is getting into more of an argument about the article attached to it than consideration of a possible new populist Democratic platform.

So. A re-post …

“Democrats need to get out of the ivory tower. And we need to find a populist Democratic Presidential Candidate before 2020.

And I said ‘populist.’ Not democratic socialist. No. Bernie would not have done better against Trump’s shy vote.

For every working class vote he’d have attracted, he’d have lost a middle-class vote.

The bottom line is this: If Democrats want to start making some realistic impact on national electoral politics (leave aside state and local), we need to find a candidate who will talk in humane but populist terms about the issues facing America.

A candidate who will talk forcefully and eloquently about rebuilding communities, where folks know they can find decent-paying local jobs. Even if this requires public support.

Where there is a sense of comfort and safety: between police and community, between different communities; between all citizens, regardless of their race, gender, age, background or place of origin.

Where there is a conversation (nationally, statewide and locally) to improve the sense of justice available to all. But a realistic conversation, where a community’s safety is based upon all having respect for law, order and the sensitivities of others.

Where folks are encouraged to support an individual’s right to own their gender, their race, their religion, without seeking to ram the difference down the throats of neighbors who may find the differences uncomfortable.

Where we spend less time talking about not hating, and more time proving it is unnecessary.

Where the primary responsibility of any level of government is seen to be protecting citizens.

Where that expanded vision of ‘protection,’ in 2020, is seen to be protecting from danger at home and threat from abroad, but also from unfair economic competition abroad and absentee employers at home.

Where tariff and regulation are not dirty words., But are seen as legitimate tools to protect the economic and social stability of our communities.

Where folks are not constantly subjected to what they perceive as onerous calls on them to ‘police’ every dispute, every tension, every perceived wrong.

Where support for the rule of law also means allowing folks to take advantage of laws already there, rather than constantly coming up with new nuances.

Where that reliance on the rule of law extends to our foreign policy. A foreign policy which demands that all, including our nation, adheres to international law.

Where breach is subject to the jurisdiction of existing international bodies, and does not rely on American taxpayers to foot the bill of policing the world.

And where the money saved on bringing all our troops home (from the some 1,000 US military bases around the world) allows for a re-direction in the manner in which our national government government uses tax dollars.

Where Democrats are perceived as viewing every last tax dollar as a precious commodity, invested by folks who can not spare those dollars.

Where those who can spare more tax dollars are asked to do so.
Where the economy of our country is invested in ordinary folks and their communities, and not in the obscene bonuses of the banking elite.

Where never again will the livelihood of ordinary citizens be held hostage by Wall Street.

Where we strive to live by the inscription on the base of the Statue of Liberty, inviting all the world’s huddled masses to come to these shores.

But where we ask those who dream to respect the dreams of those already living here. To understand that change needs to be at a pace that everyone finds comfortable.

Where it is not a sin once more to to say we are proud of being Americans, because we know being American means we are prepared to find a way to talk with each other, open our hearts to each other, and to accept differences between each other.

Within a framework that protects all in a manner that is humane but also realistic, and which understands that individual rights are important, but not more important than a community and a nation being at peace.”

[Facebook comments here.]

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