I’m what used to be called a liberal and is now called a Progressive. I’m proud that I’ve chosen to support and help perpetuate the domestic policies of FDR. He read into The Constitution not only what was written in black and white, but what he believed the signers had in mind for how we should use The Constitution as the law of the land in years beyond their own. He thought logically enough to give the signers credit for not holding future generations to laws that might become irrelevant with the passing of time.
The Declaration of Independence, although not formally part of The Constitution, clearly lays out the goals which The Constitution was intended to meet. Three of those goals were to always provide “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness” for Americans. To write a constitution that would fly in the face of those three goals would not only be inconsistent but would be a sort of “bait and switch” on the part of the signers.
Those who consider themselves “strict constitutionalists” seem to emphasize what The Constitution does not say or, at the very least, does not allow by the mere fact that it does not specifically spell out certain provisions. To further attempt to clarify how The Constitution is viewed by some; The Constitution is not a populist document. It wasn’t written to protect the rights of people. It was written to deny people certain “inalienable rights”.
Libertarians may say that they believe that The Constitution actually protects the right of people to bear arms, to put anything into their bodies that they want to put into their bodies, to keep the money which they earn without having to share it with those less fortunate and other individualist rights (as opposed to social responsibilities).
I’ve already written about this subject in an article entitled “Is The Constitution Really That Unfair?”, so that’s as much as I’ll write about it in this article.
There have been several articles published lately that attempt to define Progressivism or Liberalism. Some of these articles were written to prove that Obama or Clinton are not true Progressives, others have been written to prove that one or the other or both are, indeed, Progressives.
Today, however, many people think that being Progressive means never having to say you’re a Republican. Today, many people think that being Progressive is synonymous with being a Democrat.
There are entire groups of people who believe that they’re Progressive, but are nothing more and nothing less than Democratic Party apologists.
An example of one of these groups is MoveOn.org.
MoveOn may have supported someone other than John Kerry for the Democratic nomination for president in 2004. Nonetheless, when it was obvious that Kerry was going to be the Democratic nominee, they stood behind him 100%.
In fact, during his 2004 bid for the presidency, Kerry said that he would send 40,000 more troops to Iraq. This sounds like a “surge” of sorts, does it not?
Yet, many Progressives and Progressive groups slammed Ralph Nader for running in 2004 because, they claimed, he would take votes away from Kerry. Amazingly, Progressives attacked the only Progressive who was in the race in 2004 without asking themselves, “If Kerry was really a progressive, why would there have been any chance that Nader would have taken votes away from him?”
Indeed, if Kerry was a Progressive, would Nader have even entered the race? Maybe there are those who believe that Nader is a power hungry fanatic, but looking at his history, we find non partisan, non politically driven activities which he initiated that were always in the best interest of the American people.
Not only was Kerry not going to end the war in Iraq in what I, at least, believe would have been a timely manner, his domestic policies weren’t Progressive either. Indeed, NAFTA, which Kerry supported, is a policy which supports “globalization”. “Globalization” doesn’t sound like a domestic policy, but it sure as hell is. It’s a domestic policy in that it punishes American workers by outsourcing their jobs to third world countries. Creating unemployment in this country is not a good domestic policy and it certainly flies in the face of FDR’s domestic policies.
There is at least one more detail which promotes the Democrats=Progressive myth.
World War I, World War II, The Korean War, The Vietnam War and military action in Bosnia were all carried out under Democratic administrations. I’m sure that some believe that Vietnam was in Eisenhower’s plans. It may very well may have been in Truman’s plans as well, however.