POLITICAL PARTIES: THE DEMOCRATIC PARTY

A political party is defined ” as an organised group of people with at least roughly similar political aims and opinions that seeks to influence public policy by getting its candidates elected to public office.”

We can all lament the current state of American politics with its excessive partisanship and the fact the Republican Party is in disrepair. This has happened before, such as the period of time before the Civil War when the Whig Party was dying. But to impugn the honor of every politician by claiming that they are all corrupt goes too far. There are honorable men and women of each political party.  I am a proud Democrat and we demean those who work each day for good and to bring about positive change by alleging that the Democratic Party stands for nothing or that those who are our elected officials are corrupt.

William Seward, who was the Secretary of State under Abraham Lincoln and who in his own right was a leading political philosopher of the day had this to say about political parties. ” Solid, enduring and consistent parties, inspired by love of country, reverence for virtue and devotion to human liberty, bold in their conception of measures, moderate in their success, and resolute throughout reverses, are essential to effective and benevolent administration in every free State. Unanimity, even in a wise, and necessary policy, can never be expected in any country all at once, and without thorough debate and earnest conflicts of opinion. All public movements are therefore undertaken, and prosecuted through the agencies, not of individuals, but of parties, regulated, excited, and moderated, as occasion may require, by their representatives. He who proposes means so impracticable that he can win no party to his support may be a philanthropist but he cannot be a statesman.”

Democracy is a messy process. If it were a dictatorship it would be much easier where you can just order what you think is necessary. A question comes to mind on whether Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump are philanthropists, demagogues or are they statesmen?

To paraphrase Lord Acton, money tends to corrupt, and I do stress the word tends to. To use the broad stroke of the pen to claim that those who accept money from corporations are therefore corrupt is an affront to their honor. There are good men and women who work hard each day to do right by their constituents and it is just plain wrong to claim to know their innermost thoughts regarding whether they have given their souls over to those who have made contributions to their campaigns.

I am a proud Democrat. Our political party has democratic values. It has quite a long history to where we can point to with a sense of pride our accomplishments. I feel the need to remind the voters of what we have stood for and what we stand for now because of some of the criticism we hear. You would think that there is no difference between the two political parties or that we do not stand up for the middle class.

The following is a partial list of Democratic Party accomplishments of which a lot of the things that have been accomplishments we take for granted:

WOMAN’S SUFFRAGE

SOCIAL SECURITY

THE SEC.

RURAL ELECTRIFICATION ACT OR THE TVA

THE 40 HOUR WEEK

THE MINIMUM WAGE

NATO

SCHOOL LUNCH

FEDERAL HOME LOAN

THE MARSHALL PLAN

THE MAN ON THE MOON

PEACE CORPS

NUCLEAR TEST BAN TREATY

THE CIVIL RIGHTS ACT

THE VOTING RIGHTS ACT

MEDICARE

OBAMA KEPT US OUT OF A DEPRESSION

THE RECOVERY ACT

DODD-FRANK

OBAMACARE OR THE AFFORDABLE CARE ACT

THE LILLY LEDBETTER FAIR PAY ACT

THE IRAN AGREEMENT

OPENING UP RELATIONS WITH CUBA

This is quite a list of accomplishments. Of course, Republicans have trouble recognizing any of these accomplishments because they have been in the most part against all of these measures when they came up for passage and they still harbor doubts as to the value of any of them even Social Security and Medicare.

We now have a democrat running for President, Hillary Clinton, who wants to change things in many areas, and we have a challenger Bernie Sanders who also has ideas that he wants to bring forth and see passed. This is all a plus for the Democratic Party because ideas that are popular are incorporated into the future plans of the party if in fact they can be proved to work in the reality of the political arena.

It is disconcerting to hear some of the nonsense from some of the enthusiastic supporters of Bernie, who believe in everything he wants to do even though it seems as if finding the money to pay for some of his ideas will be challenging. But it is particularly galling to hear them talk as if the Democratic Party is bereft of any ideas. They seem to be like the Monday morning quarterback, critiquing from the sideline claiming that only their ideas are good. Then we have a problem. There seems to be an almost sanctimonious and holier than thou attitude that pervades the Sanders campaign. If we have a set of attitudes by which only their ideas are good ideas than they are the Democratic version of the Tea Party. We would have one side of the political spectrum insisting that they will not accept any compromise nor book any giving in at all to compromise. They seem to believe in my way or the highway.

We are now coming to the end of the process by which a person will become the nominee of the Democratic Party. Whoever wins this honor should be supported for the good of the country. It is easy to be overcome by the emotion of the moment and believe that somehow Hillary Clinton is evil incarnate. This is all a part of politics where you try to paint your opponent as being inherently wrong headed and dangerous.  Do not be overcome by the passion of the moment and somehow take a breath so that reason will triumph. In the fall it is highly likely that the nation will face the candidacy of Donald Trump with an outside chance of it being Ted Cruz. This fact, should allow for our own reason to come into play and realize that our candidates from, yes, the Democratic Party, are far superior to the alternative. Be Proud to be a member of the oldest party in America, the Democratic Party, with all of its warts and all. Vote Democrat!!!

 

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