©2011 by Fred Flaxman
I’m afraid that Barack Obama, whom I actively supported for election, has become the President of Missed Opportunities. Coming into office to inherit the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression, he missed the opportunity to break up the financial institutions which were “too big to fail.” He appointed the very people who caused the problem to solve it.
Coming into office with his Democratic Party controlling both houses of Congress, he and his party missed the opportunity of getting rid of the anti-democratic filibuster — a prerequisite for getting almost anything else of importance accomplished with a simple majority of the votes.
He thus missed the opportunity of obtaining a single payer health-care insurance system, or at least a public option — the only ways to really cut health care costs. And he missed the opportunity to clean up our corrupt, money-controlled electoral system by not championing a Constitutional amendment eliminating corporate political donations when the Supreme Court sanctioned them.
With the 400 wealthiest households in the United States bringing in more money than the bottom 60 percent combined, why not establish a greed tax of 100% of all household income over, let’s say, $1 million per year? Or should I propose $500,000 so we can compromise at $750,000? With multi-billion dollar corporations paying no income taxes at all, why not establish an alternative minimum tax for them?
There was so much the Democrats could have done while they had the votes to do it. They muffed it. So why don’t we progressives learn from the example of the Tea Party? They are a movement within the Republican Party trying to take over that party, and they are off to a very good and quick start! We should form a Progressive Party and try to take over the Democratic Party in the same way. That is likely the only way to bring about the real change that Obama and the Democrats promised but did not deliver.