Monday, November 23, 2009

Purity Pledge

When I first heard that the GOP was considering a purity pledge for candidates, I assumed they were reacting to recent sex scandals. But no, the list of ten resolutions is just the same old laundry list we've been hearing for years:
  1. We support smaller government, smaller national debt, lower deficits and lower taxes by opposing bills like Obama’s “stimulus” bill;
  2. We support market-based health care reform and oppose Obama-style government run health care;
  3. We support market-based energy reforms by opposing cap and trade legislation;
  4. We support workers’ right to secret ballot by opposing card check;
  5. We support legal immigration and assimilation into American society by opposing amnesty for illegal immigrants;
  6. We support victory in Iraq and Afghanistan by supporting military-recommended troop surges;
  7. We support containment of Iran and North Korea, particularly effective action to eliminate their nuclear weapons threat;
  8. We support retention of the Defense of Marriage Act;
  9. We support protecting the lives of vulnerable persons by opposing health care rationing and denial of health care and government funding of abortion; and
  10. We support the right to keep and bear arms by opposing government restrictions on gun ownership.
The first item on the list was enough to make me roll my eyes and clutch my suddenly throbbing skull. Republicans keep telling us they're all about the smaller national debt, and yet, in reality, they are notorious for throwing debt on top of debt.

Number two and number nine on the list kind of go together. The government won't be running health care and our current system already rations in a truly American way. Number three on the list? I thought cap and trade was a market-based approach.

But let me skip to number six. We can't define victory in either war, and anyway we've been told the withdrawal from Iraq is already underway. Our only existing cause in that occupation is to support Iraq's mythical democracy. But the real foolishness is that part about the President -- the commander-in-chief -- abdicating his role and obeying military commanders who want more troops. This is a frightening recipe for permanent war, and it's officially part of the Republican plan. It's totally ineffectual for fighting terrorism, and oh yeah... see pledge number one up there? Can't fight a war without money, honey.

Number eight on the pledge list is another non-surprise. Republicans are really determined to reinforce that whole "party of no" image! It's all about what they oppose. There are no new ideas. In fact, the GOP's biggest innovation might be this whole pledge thing.

It's pure politics, and it's insane. Why elect somebody whose loyalty is to a party and not their country or constituents? We hear a lot of controversy over the pledge of allegiance lately, but I believe there should only be one mandatory pledge. Every day, every elected official should put their hand over their heart and pledge allegiance to the people.

No comments: