Sunday, May 13, 2007


I Send Letters

I have a plan -- give GW Bush what he wants (no timeline), but put a few even more (from his point of view) odious restrictions, which don't deny the troops money for a fiscal year (and in fact make sure our troops don't go into bankruptcy), but which put him on the spot.

Here's my letter to my Congresscritter and the Dem. Sen. from our state. Those of you who live in localities in which your Representatives and Senators are more likely than mine are to actually care about the Dem. party, the troops or whatever, feel free to use this or some better re-written version thereof:

I fear, either due to the failure of Democrats to stay on message or due to the fact that the media seems to report only what the President is saying (and hence his spin) and not what Democrats are actually saying, that those of us, who are concerned about indefinitely funding the war in Iraq despite a lack of progress, will be seen by too many people as not supporting the troops. Having recently seen the movie "Maxed Out" (the concerns in this movie being those we must address now!), I have an idea that I think might work for an alternate bill.

There are soldiers whose service has led to their bankruptcies, due to the military extending terms of service and otherwise interfering with the financial security of our fighting men and women. That soldiers, who are fighting in Iraq, are entering into bankruptcy because of their service, is deplorable. Yet, too many, including those who oppose Democratic plans to bring our troops home, who claim to be supporting our troops have done nothing about this.

Here's my plan: the Democrats send a bill to the President that funds the war for a fiscal year. No riders, no nothing non-war related. Just fund the war for a fiscal year -- with stringent requirements that the President must report on the war (written such that if the President fails in these requirements, he will be guilty of a high crime and hence y'all should impeach him) at regular intervals, which reports should (1) include a televised "Prime Minister's Questions" style opportunity for even back-benchers to get the President and his associates on the record and (2) include testimoney and or statements made UNDER OATH (thus, if these turn out to be lies, the President should be impeached due to perjury) regarding the progress of the war and answers to questions about the lead up to the war. And here's the kicker -- the bill should include a "shared sacrifice" provision taxing profits from credit card companies who are collecting on our brave fighting men and women due to debts they accrued that they wouldn't have accrued if they weren't overseas.

The President will threaten a veto. Democrats should unanimously respond -- "look we gave you what you wanted, and now you want more? I guess there is no satisfying a bully" and "why are you afraid to talk to us? if you aren't guilty, what do you have to hide? that's what y'all said about wiretapping and such, right?" Through it back in their faces using simple folksy language. And when the credit card companies and their retainers complain about the "shared sacrifice" provision -- make 'em look like evil troop-hating bastards. Don't be afraid to play politics -- that's why we pay you the big bucks ;)

Public debt is a big problem and the pushers are part of that problem. Let's give 'em all a one-two punch. The GOP has played dirty. The economic overclass has played dirty. Let's show them some good ol' fashioned heartland populism. And when they complain about us "starting a class war" -- don't listen to them and don't be cowed. They know who started it -- and the more they complain, the more frightened we know they are.

As Harry Truman could have told us, Democrats only do well when the act as Democrats. The American people gave our party a chance last November. Now we need to show them what we can do in time for the 2008 elections. Right now the President somehow is controlling the message ... so let's send him a bill which goes around his spin and puts him, and his corporate cronies, on the spot.

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