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Good points all. Today, we have a sector of the electorate that has decided--after benefiting from progressive investments in infrastructure, human rights, workers' rights, the environment, education, etc--to opt out. Opt out of paying those investments forward to future generations, despite the fact that they still benefit from these investments every day. To identify this sector of the electorate is to obvious to require elaboration.
Most of which was funded and made possible by the vast affluence created by capitalists in the private sector. Yet these people are vllified, made out as evil greedy oportunists by a sector of the electorate. To identify this sector of the electorate is to obvious to require elaboration.
Completely missed where anyone was vilifying anyone.. The whole point of this piece is that affluence is good. As are equal rights. Increased concentration of affluence among fewer and fewer and fewer people should be at the very least concerning, however. How's that vilifying anyone?
Reactionaries who rail against Progressivism clamor for a return to the Social Darwinism of the 19th century. Apparently they long for a time when Africans worked dawn to dusk in blazing sun drenched fields. Upper class women were placed on pedestals while poor women died from unending pregnancies. Children lost their youth and health when they were herded into unventilated factories surrounded by dangerous machines by age eight. Men were paid subsistence wages and existed with their families in dilapidated, vermin infested tenements in over crowded, soot dusted cities. Others lost everything on their farms in the dry western lands that never were profitable where the railroads (built with huge government subsidies) charged two bushels of wheat/corn to ship each one they delivered to market. Wonderful times--if you forget the human misery and suffering endured by most Americans. As Jay Gould (1836 - 1892) boasted, "I can hire one half of the working class to kill the other half." In which half would most of today's Reactionaries find themselves?
A more, dare I say, "nuanced" assessment of the history of progressivism would reveal a very mixed record.
Also, progressives (so-called) need to understand that just because some of the ideas they were behind worked out well, others didn't, and they will always have to endure the agony of skepticism from those who understand that, while some improvement is always possible, understanding limits it essential.
The Greeks would have benefited from such skepticism.
If have to laugh myself silly at the way Leftists have styled themselves "progressives." In their own way, they are just as regressive and stodgy as Conservatives. And new ideas? Most of what they offer is re-hashes of FDR's stale-old New Deal. "Progressives" haven't had a new, innovative idea in decades!
If stealing one person's hard earned wealth and property and giving it to someone else who has not earned it is deemed "progressive" - then I am a proud Regressive.
Why does it matter if the ideas are "old" or not if they still work, and they do. What "new" ideas do conservatives have--lower taxes on the rich.
The fact is that FDR saved capitalism. It had to be restrained and modified or there would have been some serious revolutions--many people were ready for it, many people became communists and "socialists" (which is not a dirty word), and this country was helped back on its feet. Social security helped keep old people out of the (literal) poorhouse or the debtors' prison, where they went to die.
The point is, that we used to have a social contract. Remember the preamble to the Constitution? We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.
Nobody is successful all by themselves. Not when they have taken advantage of our education system and our transportation system and our communication system and our legal system and our police and fire--it goes on and on. Then they need to pay something back.
You certainly are regressive. All the way back to at least the 19th century.
It's time some of you joined the 21st century and acknowledged what you owe.
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