Fifteen very bad things Republicans would do if they got their selfish way
Always the political instrument of moneyed elites, and a retrograde societal force, the GOP today is more negatively impactful than ever. Its agenda, if fully implemented, would prove catastrophic. Here's what an unfettered Republican Party would do "for" America:
1) Greatly reduce or entirely eliminate taxes on the rich, thereby forcing hard-pressed working families to painfully make up resulting revenue shortfalls.
2) Bust labor unions, cruelly preventing the collective bargaining that's the key reason why US workers ever won decent wages and benefits.
3) Stubbornly deny the existence of ominous climate change while blithely pumping more pollutants into the environment from lucrative, dirty industries and practices. Although reputable scientists say 350 carbon parts per atmospheric million is the safe limit for sustained life on Earth, Republicans dismiss the frightening fact that we're already at a carbon level of roughly 390 ppm.
4) Remove "restrictive" regulations on everything from investment banks and credit card companies to a broad array of "profit-eroding" consumer protections, leaving the American masses exposed to a host of resulting abuses and dangers.
5) Continue to criticize and insufficiently fund public education, advocating private schooling instead, thus entirely ignoring that progressive public systems are used in every country that has education outcomes superior to our own.
6) Outlaw abortion, under a fraudulently moral guise, compelling the US to bloodily join those benighted, backward nations where thousands of already-born, living, breathing, socially functioning females perish because of sexist denials of their basic reproductive rights.
7) Continue to recite a Pledge of Allegiance whose last six words are "with liberty and justice for all," while remaining numbly oblivious to the harsh hypocrisy of preventing our homosexual citizens from marrying.
8) Speak often and loftily of freedom, but engage in secret wiretapping, repression of domestic dissent, neo-McCarthyite witch hunts, Red-baiting name calling, and a panoply of Patriot Act transgressions against the Constitution of the United States...all under the misused rubric of "national security."
9) Show the rest of humankind nothing but bullying world-cop arrogance through endless US interventions and aggressions on foreign soil, resulting not just in countless lives extinguished in indefensible wars, and billions of badly-needed dollars flushed down the drain, but constant al Qaeda recruitment against hated Yankee interlopers.
10) Generally drive down the income levels of America's working-class majority, as a purported cost-saving corporate measure, without appreciating that a populace that's too poor to buy back what society produces is doomed to economic ruin. A living wage is the ultimate "stimulus," but try to find even one Republican who favors it!
11) Continue to lie about the alternative, affordable health care for all that some fifty world nations' people overwhelmingly support, thereby propagandistically leading Americans to think that having private insurance whose premiums are rising at rates three times higher than our pay -- and which routinely denies coverage when it's required most -- is somehow preferable
12) Unleash de facto ethnic cleansing against 12 million immigrant men, women, and children, making them contemporary equivalents of the Jewish scapegoats that Hitler blamed for hardships Germans experienced during a prior period of capitalist economic distress.
13) Shamefully try to lend credence to their avarice and social irresponsibility by revising the Bible to obscure passages that place human need before abject greed, attempting to turn it into a facilitating guide for modern peers of the temple moneychangers whose tables Jesus angrily knocked to the floor (and who undoubtedly wouldn't be mentioned in the amended version that one conservative group is actually, amazingly trying to put into circulation).
14) Give full vent to the intensely bigoted hatred that has crazed extremists dreaming of literally tearing Barack Obama to pieces and gassing all liberals...if only they could.
15) Place the livelihoods and lives of over 300 million Americans in the hands of incompetent ideological "purists" such as Sarah Palin.
While there are certainly Democrats who've yet to show spine in furtherance of vital change, let's be absolutely clear about the unmitigated disaster that would follow if Republicans, in their present ultra-rightist incarnation, ruled our country exactly as they wickedly wished.
Dennis Rahkonen, from Superior, Wisconsin, has been writing progressive commentary with a Heartland perspective for various outlets since the Sixties