“The TPP was written in secret by industry insiders who care more about corporate profits than working Americans! Fast tracking the TPP would railroad this bad bill through Congress, with limited debate, before Congress can even read the fine print.”
“For the first time, a majority of Senators took a stand against simply rubber-stamping provisions of the Patriot Act. The Senate will be back for a special Sunday session on May 31 just hours before the June 1 sunset. It’s more urgent than ever that we call on Congress to let Section 215 die!”
Well over a year ago, The Secular Jurist began to repeatedly warn Democrats they would lose the crucial 2014 election and seriously divide the party going forward if they didn’t coalesce around a core set of principles (see here, here, and here). In A Blueprint for the Left, we proposed the following political platform:
Economic fairness through the concern for workers and for human prosperity.
Social justice as a principled commitment to civil rights and equal application of the law.
Public education as the instrument of knowledge and for developing productive citizens.
Secular government to ensure both freedom of, and freedom from religion.
Political equality via open democracy and restricting the corrupting influence of money.
Self-determination through the preclusion of transnational and supranational authorities.
Now, after the November debacle, some Democrats are warming-up to our idea… belatedly. From Richard Eskow of Campaign…
Senator Ted Cruz has been called many things during his time in Congress. To many of his own colleagues who feel he’s too extreme, he’s a “thorn in the side” of the Republican Party. He’s also been called a “firebrand” for his ability to energize and increase supporters of the fringe Tea Party movement. In fact, MotherJones.com calls him the “Tea Party wonder boy.”
I was horrified when, through the “Citizens United” ruling, corporations were given the Supreme Court’s blessing to spend unlimited sums of money on the candidates of their choice. How, I wondered, can individuals like me have an equal say in elections? Can my vote still count?
Just a few nights ago, I got an email from an activist group I’m a member of called People For the American Way (PFAW). Now I have hope that, just maybe, important reforms can be made to America’s campaign finance laws. I always knew it was a long shot, so getting this email was a very pleasant and very encouraging surprise:
This bill can loosen the grip of big money on Congress and put democracy back in the hands of the people.
How it works: – Contributions of $1 to $150 would be matched on a six-to-one basis by a public fund––paid for by closing corporate tax loopholes and giveaways. – Contributors would get a refundable “My Voice” tax credit of $25. – Each candidate’s public funding would be capped at a certain amount, and there would be strict enforcement of campaign finance laws—including disclosure of all donations.
President Obama has finally recognized that Americans stand opposed to dragnet surveillance and the blatant abuse of power by the NSA. But changing bits and pieces of the NSA’s massive surveillance machine won’t be enough to protect our privacy.