February 01, 2014

Dear Democrats: You want my vote?

Regular, long-term readers of the political posts on this blog know that I'm a Green leaner (although not a registered party member).

So, as Democrats here in Texas, and elsewhere, seek my support for state-level or federal-level offices, I put out a few thoughts per the header.

Federal-level candidates, if you want my vote?
1. You must have, as part of your campaign, a promise to implement a carbon tax on domestic sources of carbon dioxide, combined with a carbon tariff on imports. I said that I thought the WTO allowed it long before Paul Krugman did, but, if it's good enough for him, it should be good enough for you. It gets past Al Gore's "indulgences" of carbon offsets and the European Union's easily gamed cap-and-trade system. And, the tariff part of it forces China (and India, et al) to go alone with us. No more Alphonse and Gaston.

2. Go beyond Citizens United to incorporate federal financing of Congressional elections similar to the Presidential system. You know, the one that fat cat Barack Obama opted out of.

BUT! Do NOT make said financing system only applicable to Democrats and Republicans. Offer at least partial payment to third-party candidates.

3. Get serious about corporate welfare, corporate tax loopholes, etc. (Implementing No. 2, and that first, will make it a lot easier to then do this.) 

4. Deficits, when avoidable, matter more than Dick Chcney said. If you propose new programs, be honest about how you're going to pay for them.

These are just basics. I'll likely add to this from time to time and bump this post up top again.

But, Green candidates should not assume my vote for them is guaranteed. Green candidates? If you want my vote, there's two main things:

1. No pseudomedicine, whether antivaxxer stances or other things.
2. Accept the scientific reality of the general safety of GMOs. If as staunchly environmental magazine as Grist can debunk some hardcore myths, including the "no inspection" and "they're unsafe" ones, so can you.

I'll give you a prime example. Marianne Williamson is not a Green, but she's running for Congress as a Green-like independent for Henry Waxman's California congressional seat. And, given his retirement, she could win.

So far, the only issue on her issues list where I know her metaphysical and related beliefs come into play is on agriculture issues. Per the link immediately above, she believes all the myths about GMOs. But, per the New York Times, she's explicitly running on her "spirituality."

And, given California's quasi-nonpartisan primary system, she could make the top two and run against a Republican. And, if that Republican were moderate enough, and I were there, I might vote GOP. If not? I wouldn't vote in this race.

State-level candidates? 

1. Support a state-level public campaign financing system. Again, make third-party candidates eligible for at least partial funding.

3. Here in Texas? Be honest about the hidden costs of "friendly for business," including the level of uninsureds, the tax cut race to the bottom by municipal and county EDCs and more.

3. Deficits aren't avoidable at the state level, per the state constitution. If you propose new programs, be honest about how you're going to pay for them. And, on the political angle, start being honest about all those "fees" that the GOP pushed on us for the last decade (even if you were one of the enablers).
And, all candidates, there's one or  two other things. Actually, they're all part of a bundle of "transparency and honesty."

If you endorse somebody else and the endorsement is puzzling, even controversial, tell us why. Wendy Davis, tell us that you're endorsing David Alameel because of financial issues, or to track right and appeal to moderates. Him being a great businessman doesn't cut it.

If you change your mind on a major political issue, the same. Barack Obama, in 2008? Tell us you changed your mind on telecom immunity on warrantless wiretaps because Silicon Valley told you it would cut off the campaign funding pipeline otherwise. Whatever excuse that you actually did? I never did buy it.

When you talk about campaign contributions, before filing official reports, separate out your funding from jointly raised funds that will then be jointly disbursed. And other things.

Those of us who actively follow politics and have analytical abilities see through the spin, and, we get tired of it. Lack of transparency related to money issues triggers two hot buttons for me.


PDiddie said...

I shared this over here.

Gadfly said...

Gracias, mi amigo. Per a thread there, if you had to choose between Marianne Williamson (if she were to run as a Dem, not a Green, or if there were no realistic Dem, or whatever), and a Republican, which would you choose?

If the GOPer were non-nutbar, I think I'd have to vote that way (if I voted).