The Republican party is in shambles, due in large part to the fact that Trump is nominally their party leader, but due also, and in significant part, to the adoption by both parties of the politics of opposition and caricature. The Democratic party, offered the opportunity to fill the void, have done nothing of the sort. They have, instead, spent their time denouncing a man whom no one is defending and resisting policies that no one, not even Republicans, really want.
What they should be doing, and what I now do, is to state, clearly and without condition, exactly what they do want for this country. So that is what I am going to do here. I am a Democrat. Since the terms “liberal” and “conservative” have no real meaning anymore, the things for which I here declare myself are not to be categorized as either.
First, I am for universal health care. It is, first of all, the only way that this country can get control of the outrageous cost of medical care in America. It is also, in my opinion, a part of the unalienable rights upon which this country is founded.
Second, I am for a reduction in the corporate tax. First of all, we are likely not collecting anywhere near what we thought we would get in tax revenue by placing it at such a high level. Secondly, it forces businesses to adopt financial and accounting practices that, while legal, are uncomfortably dishonest and of no real value to the growth of those businesses.
Third, I am for raising taxes, on everybody, on a truly progressive basis. I am for restoring the top rate to fifty percent or more, applicable to all income above five hundred thousand dollars. As part of that, I am for eliminating all but the most basic tax deductions. I am for reducing or eliminating altogether those taxes that are not progressive, particularly those taxes usually referred to as use taxes. The only exception would be taxes on such things as liquor, cigarettes and other recreational drugs, which are meant primarily to discourage their use and to offset the cost of the damage done by such things.
Fourth, I am for overruling the Supreme Court’s decision in Citizens United, and for substantial curbs on lobbying. I am for a reasoned program of mandatory public funding for political candidates and the outlawing of private contributions to campaigns.
Fifth, I am for strict regulation of for-profit educational companies, and for a significant increase in the funding of public education, including a generous program of financial assistance for students.
Sixth, I am for a policy of immigration that would allow people living here without appropriate documentation to continue to live here by demonstrating that they have been gainfully employed and engaged in their communities.
Seventh, I am for a major contribution to the efforts of law enforcement personnel on federal, state and local levels to punish the illegal activities of gangs and to help those communities in which gangs operate to eliminate the conditions that give rise to gangs.
Eighth, I am for the creation of an independent body to install rational voting districts and to eliminate all gerrymandering.
Finally, I am for absolutely anything that will help Republicans and Democrats to work together in accomplishing the work of the people.