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A New Deal for the Twenty First Century. A Democratic Party Manifesto

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I don't know if Howard Dean and the DNC are working on something similar, but here we are just seven months away from elections that could potentially change the direction of our country. If I suddenly had sole control of the Democratic Party, these are five statements of core values that I would want every voter in the country to know about when they made their choices in November. I would want every Democratic Party candidate for office to sign a statement supporting these values. Yes, the Republicans have failed miserably, but I want the people to know in no uncertain terms what we Democrats are offering. I could have listed more and I could have been more specific or more vague, but five had a nice ring to it. You can remember the jist of these five quite easily. There is no mistake about what we are saying with these five. I am not in sole control of the Democratic Party, but if my voice matters, and Dr. Howard Dean, I am speaking directly to you, here is for what I suggest we should make it clear that we stand.

1. We are the United States of America, torture and abuse of basic human rights of people whether they are American citizens, citizens of other countries, or enemy combatants is against our values and not tolerated by the Democratic Party.

2. The underlying theme of the Constitution and Bill of Rights is to protect the people of this country against potential abuses of their freedom and privacy by our own government. Wiretapping of our citizens without a warrant is against our values and not tolerated by the Democratic Party.

3. While acknowledging good faith mistakes by some of our members in the past, the core values of the Democratic Party are such that we will never go to war unless it is absolutely necessary to protect the United States, or those with whom we have reciprocal defense treaties, against imminent physical danger. Because some of these terms have been so abused as of late, imminent physical danger means that a significant attack by an enemy is likely within the next three to six months or is already in progress or has already happened.

4. The Democratic Party supports the idea of guaranteeing all citizens a living wage and access to good health care. That being said, we also recognize the inherent challenges in implementing such programs and will work to do so without providing undue burdens on taxpayers and industries.

5. The Democratic Party supports an immediate withdrawal of our troops from Iraq. Immediate in this sense means as quickly as our military transport infrastructure can safely bring the troops home.

Please feel free to pass these on far and wide. Write to the people running for office as Democrats and ask them to sign on to them, or something similar, or whatever might come out of the DNC if they come up with something. But please, my fellow Democrats one and all, lets let the people know we stand for something.
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A political blogger for the International Business Times, Steve Leser is a hot national political pundit. He has appeared on MSNBC's Coundown with Keith Olbermann, Comedy Central's Daily Show with Jon Stewart and Russia Today's (RT) Crosstalk with (more...)
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