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Friday, July 08, 2005

Economic Interest

One thing that I have despised is the flippant use of the phrase "voting one's own economic interest." This phrase is never used when talking about rich and famous millionaires like George Lucas or Rob Reiner who just can't quite figure out that Bush's tax cuts are in their economic interests. The phrase is never used, as Richard Cohen points out, to mention that while Jews as a definable group are among the wealthiest in the country, they time and again vote overwhelmingly Democratic. No, it is only used to refer to those poor dumb red-state bastards who don't seem to have the good sense to know that gay marriage and abortion shouldn't be as important to them as, as, um, as what? The problem isn't that the poor dumb bastards can't figure out what should and shouldn't be important to them (we'll save the White Liberal elitism discussion for later - they say that they want people to think for themselves...), the problem is that the Democrats aren't proposing anything that would directly affect their economic interests.


Think about it: other than a proposed minimum wage increase (and how many minimum wage votes are there?) what have the Democrats proposed that would directly affect most people's economic interests? Not much if anything. Most people don't have degrees in economics so the ramifications of NAFTA, CAFTA, and the WTO are lost on them - pro or con. The same goes for most economic issues - unless it directly affects voters the voters don't vote on those issues. So let's do put away the meme about people voting against their economic interests already.

Having said that, it is still in everyone's economic interest - and I do mean everyone - to vote Democratic. The American economy always performs better under Democrats than Republicans.

Always.

It is also true that the Democrats should be able to show how it is in the interest of the overwhelming majority of Americans to vote Democratic. The problem is that the Republican have effectively framed the government as a bad thing - big government, bad; big corporations, good. With that political landscape it is an uphill battle to argue for the goodness of government action, when it has been established in the mindset of most Americans that the government that governs least governs best. The Republicans were relentless with their attacks on "Big Government" and on "Tax and Spend Liberals" and we will likewise have to be relentless in emphasizing the fact that you can't trust Republicans with your money - they just borrow and spend us into bankruptcy.

We have a lot of work to do, but we can share some laughs in the comments.

Emancipated by Athanasius @ 4:00 AM

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Well said, Oscar!

There are some interesting education proposals
being kicked around at this progressive think-tank,
fyi:

http://www.americanprogress.org/site/c.biJRJ8OVF/b.8473/

cChalfonte

Posted by Anonymous Anonymous @ Friday, July 08, 2005 3:20:00 PM #
 

Well, I have a bad case of writer's block and I'm heading out of town for the next week or so, so let me put Saturday's comics here:

Like Hell
Emmanuel Goldstein
Terrorism Abroad
Unattended Consequences

Posted by Blogger Athanasius @ Saturday, July 09, 2005 2:51:00 AM #
 
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