The time is running short for the Liberal movement who placed President Obama in the White House to get serious about the programs that are needed NOW, not next year or the year after or sometime in the future. The Republicans, the Party of HELL, NO have kicked the can down the road and will not rest until we are all in the ditch and they will not relent until we have jouneyed all the way to that famous creek. We need to increase the pressure on Congress until they all cry, “Uncle”. We must apply pressure in every way we can think of to get what the unemployed, the underemployed, and their families on the way back up to thinking about The American Dream.
What more can we do? We can generate a little enthusiasm on our part and take some actions that will make it very clear that the old policies of Bush that are still hanging on will not be tolerated. We don’t have to travel to major cities and make fools of ourselves like the Tea Party but we can do many things from right here at home. We must not dither about, trying to think of possible presidential prospects for 2012. By that time, given the propensity of the Republicans for cutting taxes on the rich while creating more hungry children, they may have brought about a Hoover debacle. Here are a few things we can do and you can surely think of more:
Don’t let them go home! Petition Congress in every way possible, with e-mails, phone calls, and any chance you get to speak to your representative in Congress. Tell them that there is a serious National Emergency and the president needs their help in the same way President Bush got the help he needed after 9/11. Let Leader Pelosi and Speaker Harry Reid know that there is too much work to do to allow extra time for running for re-election. If your Congressman, regardless of party, dares to show up at a public campaign effort, challenge them with the question, “Shouldn’t you be on the job dealing with this emergency instead of out here hob-nobbing with your donor buddies?” You will get thrown out but it will be worth the sacrifice.
Tell President Obama that there is another way! We all remember President Bush and all the things he did without Congressional approval. He had discovered the power of “interim appointments” and “Executive Orders” and refined them to an art. If President Obama chooses to do so, he could emulate George Bush and, by direction to the heads of the departments in his administration, reform the practices which allow other nations to victimize the American citizen. They could re-direct the rates of tariffs on imports and enlarge assistance to Americans in areas of the greatest need. If Congress doesn’t like it, they can always hurry back to Washington and get back to work representing American citizens.
Stay out of Wal Mart! Unless you are already so poor that you need to squeeze every penny just to stay alive, find a locally-owned store to patronize. The reason Wal Mart prices are so low is because their products are produced by slave labor in China or Mexico. If we continue to patronize Wal Mart and the other price-cutting stores, in a year or two, the slave labor will be you! Certainly there are people who can get a little more food for their money at WalMart than they can at the local Mom and Pop but those of us who can pay a few cents more will not only be protesting the out-sourcing of our factories to foreign countries but will be helping Mom and Pop to continue making a living.
Buy American whenever possible! If you don’t find a label in the clothing that indicates it is American-made. ask the manager where it came from. Ask your store manager, if necessary, where the produce was grown, where the meat was grown and processed. Once they find out that the imported stuff doesn’t sell as well as the homegrown, you won’t have to look as hard to find the fresh stuff that was produced by your fellow Americans. Patriotism is born in the super market.
Never say die! Sure, the progress that has been made by this administration has been slow and difficult but allowing the election of more Republicans would not help a bit. Senator Mitch McConnell may say that the gain of a few more seats by the Republicans will mean a more “balanced Congress” but, in fact, it will mean nothing more nor less than a total stalemate which will surely lead to a repeat of another Great Depression. We, as progressive Americans, must not allow the dream to die. We must ever be conscious that there are no timeouts when your child is hungry and there is no campaign season trip home when the nation is bleeding.
This writer is eighty years old and has spent a half century working with handicapped and deprived people and advocating on their behalf while caring for her own working-class family. She spends her “Sunset Years” in writing and struggling with The System.