Throwing Out the Baby with the Dirty Bath Water!

by Richardt Stormsgaard

We keep hearing that Democrats are absolutely committed to finding a candidate that can beat Trump. So far it does not look that way although it is still very early.

Three out of the five major candidates are advocating policies that are so far out of the American midstream that a Trump victory is very possible. Even if the presidency miraculously was won by a leftist Democrat due to a total Trump collapse, it will likely lead to the loss of most of our 40 wins in 2018 in red districts in the House of Representatives or more. The Senate will end up with an even stronger conservative majority. We had 360 wins in the 2018 mid-term elections in state legislatures that will be in instant jeopardy and like lead to another decade of huge built-in conservative advantage due to the new redistricting that will occur after the 2020 census.

A half year ago I hoped Elizabeth Warren, Kamala Harris, Kirsten Gillibrand and Amy Klobuchar would emerge as very promising candidates in that order. The idea that a female candidate would continue the wave of women politicians asserting themselves during the very promising 2018 mid-term elections seemed very exciting. Democrats had won 400 seats in deep red districts by appealing to moderates and independents across the country in a strong rebuke to the deep racism and sexism of the right wing, the outright attacks on the social safety net, and civil and voting rights.

The previous major Democratic victories were in 2008 when Democrats gained a legislative majority. In just two years the ACA was established, a $60 billion investment in environmental programs and businesses as part of the Stimulus Package (adjusted for inflation costing as much as the entire New Deal legislation), an almost 10% tax raise on higher income Americans, the creation of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, net neutrality, workplace safety regulations and enforcement improvement, and better regulations on for-profit colleges and private college loans, and more. Unfortunately, only two years later the Tea Party swept into power and put a stop to the progressive Obama agenda.

The far left then and now claim if only Democrats had been steering sharply to the left, this conservative backlash could have been averted. The is a preposterous claim because if anything, it was “proletarian” voters, historically and universally the most amenable to the socialist vision, that fueled the conservative backlash in 2010, as they have been during previous decades supporting an increasingly right-wing Republican Party.

Another preposterous claim by socialists in that American progressive legislation by liberal Democrats and moderate Republicans was inspired by socialism and that advanced Northern European countries are socialistic when these countries are, in fact, proof of the basic fallacy of socialism; that free enterprise needs to be dismantled for well-functioning and wealthy countries to develop.

Gillibrand has pulled out. Klobuchar is an ignored voice of reason, and Harris and particularly Warren have largely adopted socialist mythology of leftist Democrats of vastly expanded public control of society. By embracing far left ideas they are making themselves unelectable in a national election where not just the presidency, but a number of red states are absolutely needed to be won to gain control of this country.

To woo a good third of Democratic voters on the left, while ignoring moderates and independents that are by far the largest voting bloc, is paving the way for disaster in 2020.

At the very most 40% of Democrats support a Bernie Sanders type leftist. Democrats comprise 31% of all voters, Republicans 24% and Independents 42%. Apparently 11-13% of Democratic leftists believe they can convince close to half of the 80% of remaining Americans, politically to their far right, to join them and win not just the presidency, but a number of red states in a national election by embracing plans of massive governmental take-over of important societal functions, with myriads of regulations, and just tax increases.

For decades many of the 80% of Americans have voted against alleged “socialism” in all its forms; they have voted for tax cuts and regulating programs and services that benefit them; they have wanted government off their backs; and they are the ones that voted to dismantle the affordable higher education and health care Americans had half a century ago when the American middle class was the envy of the rest of the world.

Fifty-five percent of Democrats want to expand the ACA like Obama had intended so it would be available for all, and only 19% of Americans nationwide want to eliminate private insurance.

According to Gallup polling last year, 82% of Democrats said the quality of health care they received was either good or excellent. In Denmark (second-best in Europe), it was only 56%. In Switzerland, best in Europe, with universal health insurance run by private insurance companies, the satisfaction rate was a bit higher than Denmark. The Netherlands also has a high-quality universal system run through properly regulated private health insurance companies.

Why adopt socialist dogma from the far left and dismantle the very high-quality health care system (in many ways the best in the world) we have when its two main problems are correctable by winning a Democratic political majority just like Obama has envisioned? These problems are: (1) its lack of availability to low-income Americans; and (2) an under-regulated wild west system inviting abuse. The Swiss and the Dutch have had a properly regulated private health insurance system available to even their poorest citizens for decades.

Americans have also had auto and home insurance run by private insurance companies without wide-spread abuse, so correcting the existing problem is a lot easier and more prudent than dismantling the entire system, and will not lead to moderates and independents rejecting the socialist agenda of leftist Democrats.

4 Comments on “Throwing Out the Baby with the Dirty Bath Water!”

  1. The U.S. has a “very high quality health care system?” By that do you mean people dying because they’re rationing their insulin due to cost? Or 500,000 Americans going bankrupt each year over medical bills? Or 30,000 Americans a year dying because of no access to health care? Or Perdue Pharma first profiting off of Oxycontin addiction and death, and then profiting off the drug to get off the addiction? I could go on and on, but I am interested in your answers to these questions. And cost is not a factor in switching to a Medicare for All system. It actually costs a lot less than our current corrupt, greedy Insurance and Pharma companies CEO and lobbyist-fueled system.

    We do not currently have a functioning middle class. Rampant homelessness, student debt, veteran suicides, medical debt, bankruptcy and death, wages so low that most are working 2-3 jobs just to stay afloat, the prison industrial complex booming with more people in jail than any other country, AND an obscene $750,000,000,000 military budget, all contribute to probably the most unjust society in the developed world. The four justices: economic, racial, social, and environmental, are the only hope for this country. Bernie Sanders is who we need. If Democrats don’t cheat him again, Trump will be defeated.

    Sorry, your views are yesterday. We need deep change, and we will have it one way or another. Hopefully not with 4 more years of Trump. Dems need to get smart, read the writing on the wall, have a heart, ditch Neoliberalism, and get Bernie AND the people along with him in the White House.

  2. Richardt, I agree with what you are saying. I am one of those Independant voters, socially liberal, fiscally conservative, educated, female. We need to bring the country together to accomplish anything. I like Amy Klobuchar and Pete Butiegieg. Amy is smart, experienced, plainspoken and practical. I find her sincere and very likable. I am disappointed she doesn’t get more attention. I think Pete is super smart, honest, admirable for his military service, and not extreme in his platform. I think they would both work across the aisle to get things done and lessen the current partisan divide in our country. I like Biden OK, but frankly, he’s too old and Trump will mop of the floor with him in debates. I love Bernie, but he’s too old, will be labeled a socialist, and his day is past.
    I pay $1000/month for my high deductible health insurance, which doesn’t cover crap. Sorry, but I protest illegal immigrants be given free health care. Open some free clinics for them to go to, but I resent paying so much and others getting it for free. Same with these homeless people, crapping in our rivers, starting fires in our hills. No pity for them. I believe in personal responsibility.
    But above all, we must vote Trump out.
    Don’t blow it AGAIN, Dems!

  3. Please read this informative document titled, “Options for financing Medicare for All.” It is located on Senator Sanders Senate website. https://www.sanders.senate.gov/download/options-to-finance-medicare-for-all?inline=file
    The Sanders M4A plan combined with his Green New Deal Marshall plan-style movement to address the climate crisis will mobilize people in a way that may have a chance for us to address the serious problems facing the planet. I’m afraid the time for neo-liberal incrementalism is past. It will take a political revolution to address the mess we are in world wide. The Sanders climate plan is the only one that addresses the essential issue of paying back the climate debt to the developing south. This is a debt that must be payed if we are going to be successful in addressing the climate catastrophe. Even Al Gore realized this when he brokered a loan to India at the Paris Climate Accord conference. The loan was to help India build a renewable power grid instead of hundreds of coal fired power plants. To get the number of voters who Richardt Stormsgaard says we must have casting Dem ballots in 2020, we will need that political revolution of millions of grass roots volunteers working to win back the Senate. I’m encouraged by the Sanders campaign’s ability to out raise all the other candidates and to do it with more donations from more people and donations of less money than any other candidate. Workers from McDonalds and Walmart are sending him $2.70 donations. They have been seeing him on the picket lines with them for years as he uses his celebrity to draw attention to their plight. Those are the voters we need to turn out and get working as volunteers if we are going to win back the Senate.

  4. The quality of care and the innovative aspects of US health care is globally unsurpassed. Turning our health care system over to public control when just about every single aspect of American public infra-structure has been under-funded and neglected for decades is not prudent, with cuts, low quality, and general disarray. All democrats need to do is find a candidate that can motivate independents just like we did around the country in the 2018 mid-term elections and we can build a better health care system that works for everybody. Just like Obama had intended until the Tea-Party emerged.

    I completely agree as my op-ed states that major corrections are very necessary to our system, but that is only achievable by winning elections, and a leftist candidate is the greatest asset the right-wing could wish for. There is a reason Fox News invites Bernie Sanders to conduct a town-hall with an enthusiastic, specially chosen audience.

    Some circles in the private enterprise sector bear great responsibility for the emergence of the US right-wing, like the oil and gas interests aligned with the Koch’s. But mostly it is your “proletarian voters”, traditionally most amenable to socialist messaging, that have been voting against their own interests for decades. They wanted less taxes, less regulations, they wanted government off their backs. And boy did they get that, most of the problems you point out in your first paragraph are a direct result of this.
    A third major culprit are educated leftists first emerging as a major force in the 2000 election, almost 3,000,000 votes for Ralph Nader, 100,000 in Florida, in effect giving the election to George Bush. The Iraq War, the global financial melt-down, first two conservative SCOTUS judges, the Citizens United decision in 2010 and in 2013 the elimination of section 5 of the Voting Rights Act, millions of voters prevented from voting for Hillary Clinton, the stolen election in 2016, and now two more conservative judges ready to dismantle civil and voting rights(including abortion), and cement voter suppression measures followed, especially if the 2020 is lost because Democrats choose a leftist candidate seriously out of the main-stream.

    Now we have perhaps tens of millions of leftist voters that if they were to succeed in choosing a Democratic standard-bearer will almost certainly will get Trump reelected. Socialists rarely reach above 15% in any advanced country, but they can become spoilers in 2020 like the Green Party was in 2000 if Democrats choose a leftist.

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