I watched the Republican speeches last night. There were lots of repeating themes, but one that caught my ear that I haven’t heard anyone else comment on is that President Obama should not blame President Bush for his problems. He should accept responsibility for the economy as it is.
It’s a trick. And maybe it might work against the Democrats, but there’s no reason that voters shouldn’t be realistic about how we got into the deep hole that we’re in. I don’t take orders from the Republican Party, or the Democrats. I know how it happened, and can’t forget just because the Repubs want us to.
It would be stupid for voters to elect Republicans, esp when they’re in denial about how the mess got created. They’re going to keep doing the same things they were doing before the collapse of 2008. And they think the result would be any different? It won’t.
What we need to do is as it was before.
1. Reform the banking system, break up the huge banks so that they aren’t too big to fail. Don’t accept the current situation where they privatize the profits and socialize the losses.
2. Invest in stimulating economic activity, taking advantage of the low interest rates, to repair infrastructure, invest in education, and start building an economy around much lower energy consumption.
3. Encourage people to have fewer children, not just in the United States but around the world. The biggest problem we have is overpopulation. It’s unfortunately not a long-term problem, the problem is immediate. We have too many people. Catholics may not like it, but this isn’t a Catholic country, or even a Christian country. We were founded on a strong separation of church and state, for good reasons. Freedom to worship includes a freedom not to worship, and a freedom to think and be smart rather than blindly accept the orders of someone else’s church.
4. Double-down on health reform. The Affordable Care Act was a decent start. But we’re still paying too much for health care. There’s much to learn from the way other economies do it. Let’s be smart and steal the best ideas from them.
5. We need to amend the Constitution to undo the Citizens United mess created by the Supreme Court.
6. The next war won’t be fought with traditional armies, guns, or even nukes. Our infrastructure is heavily computerized and networked. We don’t need to spend so much money on bullets, guns, tanks and battleships. They’re this generation’s Maginot Line. Beyond that I don’t know what to do about this, and I’m a computer expert.
Those are just some beginning ideas. Neither party is going to talk about any of it. But it’s still what we need to do, to have a fighting chance to be prosperous in the future.