Skip to comments.The Race To The Middle For 2008
Posted on 12/03/2006 7:47:19 AM PST by A. Pole
The best postmortem on the 2006 election came from that perennial politician, Senator Ted Kennedy (D-MA). He said, "People want to know who's on their side. Whether it's health care or wages or retirement issues, they want to have someone on their side."
The biggest electoral bloc of the "they" who are seeking friends is the middle class, which includes people variously labeled blue-collar workers, skilled workers, or Reagan Democrats. They are the swing voters, often called the moveables. President Ronald Reagan's victories absolutely depended on their support. But Presidents Bush I and II kicked them away from the Republican Party, particularly on the issue of jobs.
Did the 2006 election teach Republicans that it is smart to be friends of the middle class? Have Republicans realized that jobs were second only to the unpopular war as the issue of 2006, and will surely be the number-one issue in 2008? George W. Bush carried Ohio in 2004 because the marriage amendment brought out the values voters. But Democrats can play that game, too: in 2006 the Ohio referendum on increasing the minimum wage raised the jobs issue, passed by 57 percent, and helped to bury Republican candidates.
Ohio has lost its manufacturing base. Some of the good jobs went to plants that were outsourced overseas and some disappeared in the tsunami of cheap Chinese goods as Wal-Mart replaced small businesses and left behind towns with empty streets and boarded-up windows.
Incumbent Republican Senator Mike DeWine was badly defeated by Rep. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) who had led the congressional fight against CAFTA and wrote a book called "Myths of Free Trade." Brown's TV ads showing him standing in front of a "plant closed" sign were powerful.
Almost every one of the Republican Members of Congress who bit the dust in the 2006 election had been an enthusiastic booster of the globalists' agenda: NAFTA, CAFTA, WTO (World Trade Organization), Fast Track, PNTR (Permanent Normal Trading Relations), and Free Trade Agreements (FTA) with countries most Americans never heard of. Republicans were badly on the defensive in the face of Democrat ads touting the issue of jobs.
The United States has lost over three million manufacturing jobs since Bush became President. The U.S. trade deficit hit a record high of $717 billion last year, and is expected to be even higher this year.
The middle class is not placated by feel-good talk that the stock market has climbed to a record high, or that unemployment is at a record low, or that the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is growing. Unemployment statistics don't count the guys who lost $50,000 jobs in manufacturing and are now working $25,000 jobs in retail, and job-growth figures happily do count the wives who have been involuntarily forced into the labor force just to keep groceries on the table.
The middle class is not placated by glib slogans that free trade is good for the economy and that protectionism is a nasty word. Common sense tells them that there is no such thing as a free lunch and yes, indeed, they do expect friends in government and industry to protect American jobs against unfair competition from foreigners who work for 30 cents an hour. Americans relish competition, as our national fixation on sports contests proves every day. But the globalists have destroyed a level playing field and, in addition, have subordinated us to an umpire (a.k.a. the WTO) that is biased against us.
Globalist policies have encouraged U.S. employers to use near-slave labor in Asia, whose products are then guaranteed duty-free or low-tariff re-entry to the United States. Those products are then sold here for prices that are cheap by U.S. standards but have a high markup of up to 80 percent.
Globalist policies also allow discrimination against U.S. manufacturers by the Value Added Tax racket, whereby foreign governments subsidize their products both coming and going. For example, German automobiles cost 16 percent less in the United States than the same car sold in Germany, and U.S. automobiles cost 16 percent more in Germany than the same car bought in the United States.
Nancy Pelosi plans to shift the dialogue on Capitol Hill to worker's pay, college tuition, health-care costs, and other issues that touch ordinary families. Her solutions are all bad economics and very expensive, but they will enable her to pose as a friend of the middle class.
All six U.S. Senators thought to be planning a run for the Democratic nomination for president voted against CAFTA. The issue would be dramatically joined if the Democratic nominee were opposed, for example, by Senator John McCain, who supported NAFTA, CAFTA, WTO, and PNTR for China.
Will Republicans continue to follow George W. Bush in his post-election travels to solicit even more Asian products made by cheap labor and subsidized by their governments? Or will Republicans get smart on the jobs issue and reestablish their friendship with the Reagan Democrats?
Well since the middle class voted out their "enemy", and voted in their friends, what is their legislative agenda to bring back all the manufacturing jobs?
I couldn't tell by the article what their plans were.
And why would Mrs. Schlafly lie?
Around here, whenever a small business closes it is almost immediately replaced by another one, usually some kind of yuppie shop.
So free trade is now and I suspect it has been for a while a losing political position. If the republicans want to win they need to dump it asap.
"Only problem is that is a pure lie. Nothing at all even remotely touching reality."
Here in CT it is 100% accurate and spot on with the demographic that the writer is talking about.
I challenge Ms. Schlafly to provide evidence to support this point. Everything I've read in the aftermath of the 2006 election indicates that the war in Iraq wasn't even the top issue in the minds of most voters -- and "jobs" (whatever that means) wasn't even among the top five.
I usually refer to him as a "bloated gutwagon." Or "Souse the Orca." Perennial politician just doesn't capture the full effect of the drunken slob.
Up $3? From when? 1971? Prove your ass-ertions.
Oh you don't know ? They're going to raise taxes on people who actually still have jobs , that's how they solve all our problems !!!
So do you think that he was wrong when he said: "People want to know who's on their side. Whether it's health care or wages or retirement issues, they want to have someone on their side."
Well, I guess you are right, if this was said by a fat Democrat then it must follow that people do not want their interests to be defended. The logic of Free Market Fundamentalism is overwhelming.
The first wave of Baby Boomers is facing retirement. They will rapidly form the largest "entitlement class" in the history of the country. Politicians who offer to increase the Boomers' benefits from baloney sandwiches to steak and lobster will get elected. Politicians who call for restraint will lose. This will set the pattern for the next twenty years.
Watch, it's coming to a Nanny State near you.
Is the middle where we want to be? Dwight Eisenhower was a strict middle-roader in the years 1953 to early 1961, and we saw the politics of compromise and "containment" take the lead. For all the kindly and avuncular face he put to his Presidency, Eisenhower was adamant is not drawing out worldwide Communism into a face-to-face fight, and we were saddled with that curse upon the world for perhaps 30 years longer than we ought to have endured.
Now a similar situation is developing in the confrontation between our values (which, oddly enough, are now partly comprised of some of the few remaining legacies of world socialism) and those of the Islamic world caliphate. Make no mistake, that is not a religion, it is an IDEOLOGY, transcribed from the words of a murderous schizophrenic madman, that would make Charles Manson look like a jovial and highly respected Boy Scout leader.
And we are supposed to compromise with these people? The Reds were reasonable and interested in self-preservation, and THEY were a bear to deal with. How are we supposed to deal with people who show up at meetings with a bomb belted around their waists, with their thumb poised to detonate the device the moment negotiations are not going their way?
But whether Tubby said it or not, I agree that people want to know who's "on their side" (whatever that means). It's just that I don't believe for one split second that that is the Democrats. There's too much evidence to the contrary.
On the other hand, canceling our involvment in GATT, NAFTA, CAFTA, and the rest of the AFTA-birth wouldn't bother me in the least.
The Constitution has free trade rules, laws, specifics?
(sorry, I'm just obviously ignorant on this subject of free trade and the Constitution)
I won't vote for a protectionist Republican. Granted, a real regime of hard line protectionism would be so economically damaging (and other nations would retaliate, precipitating trade wars), that it would never be implemented. But that doesn't mean we won't have to endure being subjected to demagogic lip servicing of it.
Actually Ted is right :"People want to know who's on their side. Whether it's health care or wages or retirement issues, they want to have someone on their side."
The problem is that they believe the lies the Democrats tell them and actually think the Democrats care about them.
They dont. The Democrats talk a good game then they tax us to death. They talk about health care and then they give us crap.They talk about jobs and then they pass enviro-whack legislation that takes jobs to foreign countries.
Constitutional government prohibits international organizations like the WTO from having any effect on Congress, our trade policy or US citizens. "free trade" agreements grant organizations like the WTO, and foreign agents and foreign countries unlawful authority to make rules and influence US trade.
What is protectionism?
Imposing tariffs, quotas, work content rules or anything else that restricts the free flow of goods across borders at prices set by a willing seller or buyer. I hope that helps. Obviously there are degrees of protectionism. We have too much of it as it is. By the way, trade treaties are not unconstitutional. They are ratified by Congress. I am tired of seeing the ludicrous assertion made.
See "Canadian softwood lumber dispute" as a perfect example of the latter -- in which various trade bodies (NAFTA panel, WTO, etc.) ruled against the U.S. with boring regularity over a period of five years, yet the U.S. still kept the tariff on Canadian lumber in place until it eventually (earlier this year) prevailed upon the Canadian government to sign a softwood lumber trade agreement that was heavily in our favor.
Replace it with fair trade and trade reciprocity.
Thanks! Can no one go to court over this violation then?
Sounds good, but who will do this?
I know of one conservative who would. Rep. Duncan Hunter, there is soem talk of him running in 2008.
Communists and socialists hate each other (because each think they should be in charge, but, if you recall from Hitler's time, they cooperate to get into power, then one kills (in that case, literally) the other.
Anyhoo, almost without exception, all the college-educated kids I run into (i.e., anyone under 35), will outright say they are socialists, and that wealth distribution (the forced, governmental type) is right and good. Am I still in America, here?
If I had a dollar for every college grad who had zilch real life experience, can't write well or think creatively, is a socialist or communist, who has not one entrepreneurial bone in their body, who thinks working for the government or an NGO is the ultimate, and who thinks they should be in charge...I'd be quite well-off financially.
Between the over 60 crowd who watches CBS/NBC/ABC and lives in that lie/bubble and votes how they dictate, to these sadly brainwashing, non-thinking recent college grads, not to mention the old-fashioned left vote fraud, how are family folks like myself to defend the American dream at the voting booth? Is our day over?
I don't mean to sound pessimistic, but election has not been an ear mark of progress, unless you are looking at it as a triumph for "Progress" (code word: communism).
Unfortunately you are right. Democrats might use the pretense of their supposed concern for working people to advance their decadent agenda same way as Republicans pretend to care for moral issues to advance corporate interests.
The third party is not viable in the majority system (as opposed to proportional) of voting. Only thing left is to use lobbying and pressure on whomever is in the office. This is not much.
Only during the election time. In the meantime (much longer than elections) they act according the wishes of those who pressure them. The regular voters after using their ballot go to sleep.
Interesting - you won't vote for a protectionist Republican. I guess that means you wouldn't have voted for Abe Lincoln or Theodore Roosevelt, among many others.
Abraham Lincoln was asked about using British rails and trains to create the Transcontinental Railroad, since British imports were cheaper than American made equipment. He rejected cheap imports, saying that if America bought the rails from the British, America would have the rails and the British would have the money. But if Americans bought the rails from other Americans, America would have both the rails and the money.
Luckily you are much smarter than Abe Lincoln and reject his advice on protectionism. BTW, his policies turned the U.S. into the arsenal of democracy and an industrial powerhouse.
Change "might" to "WILL" and you've got a bullseye.
Ironically, that decadent agenda runs exactly counter to the working class that voted the perpe-traitors into power.
I think its over.
Source? I'm finding dozens that say just the opposite.
Bruce Bartlett on Wages on NRO Financial According to the BLS, wages and salaries have fallen from 72.6 percent of total compensation in 2000 to 70 percent in June of this year. At the same time, ... article.nationalreview.com/?q=OGEzYTg0MzNmMGU5OWYzNjQ0OTUwOGJkMjI2MTBjYzU=
Bush and his supporters need to realize that corporatism is not conservativism (my tagline). While wages overall may be up, most of it is increases in bonuses and payoffs for people at the very top. Many people have had to move back in with their parents and take low-paying jobs so they can pay off student loans for jobs that have been outsourced of just eliminated, while being unable to provide for their immediate families.
The significant word in your post is "average".
In addition, I think the Dems will be carefully biding their time until 2008, get their candidate in, and then all bets are off. I can't imagine them showing their true colors and ruining their roll into the 2008 elections.
Freepers may not want to hear this, but a friend of mine who deals in political campaign stuff as a profession said that if a candidate is truly pro-life, that person will be reliably decent on all other issues - War on Terror, economy, taxes, entitlements, and on and on. The Repubs, controlled by the mushy middle/gang of 14/what-ever you want to call them, who follow the sad "road to the middle" which really means socially liberal, fiscally conservative (or are they, really), will have lost it for us, finally, I think.
What is true compassion? It's allowing families like mine to keep more of their income, so that we can engage in personal acts of compassion, instead of looking to the goverment to take as much money and control as possible and redistribute it in entitlements, via thousands of bureaucrats to do so much less with so much more.
One example, I think the HUGE problem with the Evangelicals right now, is their failure to act locally, and behave in accordance with their God-given principles (think Haggard and his personal problems), instead, they now give platform and credibility to the socially liberal (think Warren + Obama), and call upon the goverment to do things the church is supposed to (e.g., help the poor, the imprisioned, etc). Pride goes before a fall -- unforunately, when the salt loses its flavor, we're all in trouble.
Can anyone articulate the truth and the principles? What about a Gingrich/Steele ticket?
You mean, like go to the Supreme Court, with justices who say we need to look to international law to make decisions about US citizens? Like the ones who made the Kelo vs New London decision?
It is not a lie. Mine is down 25% from what it was only five years ago. It just depends whether you are the jerk who decides to outsource the jobs, or if you're one whose job they outsource. You need to be more flexible in your reading habits.
He's not going to answer it appears. Cat got your tongue, Johnny?
Below is a cut and paste of the relevant paragraph to make it easier for you. I hope this helps:
"In the United States, the term "treaty" is used in a more restricted legal sense than in international law. U.S. law distinguishes what it calls treaties from treaty executive agreements, congressional-executive agreements, and sole executive agreements. All four classes are equally treaties under international law; they are distinct only from the perspective of internal American law. The distinctions are primarily concerning their method of ratification. Where treaties require advice and consent by 2/3rds of the Senate, sole executive agreements may be executed by the President acting alone. Some treaties grant the President the authority to fill in the gaps with executive agreements, rather than additional treaties or protocols. And finally, Congressional executive agreements require majority approval by both the House and the Senate, either before or after the treaty is signed by the President. Currently, international agreements are executed by executive agreement rather than treaties at a rate of 10:1. Despite the relative ease of executive agreements, the President still often chooses to pursue the formal treaty process over an executive agreement in order to gain Congressional support on matters that require the Congress to pass implementing legislation or appropriate funds, and those agreements that impose long-term, complex legal obligations on the U.S."
"An executive agreement can only be negotiated and entered into through the president's authority (1) in foreign policy, (2) as commander-in-chief of the armed forces, or (3) from a prior act of Congress. For instance, it is as commander-in-chief that the President negotiates and enters into status of forces agreements (SOFAs), which govern the treatment and disposition of U.S. forces stationed in other nations.
"Agreements beyond these competencies must have the approval of Congress (for congressional-executive agreements) or the Senate (for treaties)."