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Why I could be a Republican, A Socialist Perspective
Many times throughout the history of the United States, the Republicans can be seen as the ones fighting for the common man, the poor and the underprivileged. To me this does make sense. I pulled out the dictionary on this one to find out exactly what “republican’ or “republic” means.
My Cassell’s English Dictionary states that a republic is: “1 a state or a form of political constitution in which the supreme power is vested in the people or their elected representatives; a commonwealth”. Thus, a Republican would be a person who upholds such values. What is wrong with that? Nothing, in my opinion; we could all strive for such a political system.
A good example of a somewhat conscious, progressive Republican is Theodore Roosevelt who was the leader of the Republican Party and the 26th President of the United States. He believed in things such as having “an inheritance tax”. How can we all be equal when at birth some of us are starting off in the slums and dying-off in the slums with hardly any opportunities, while some of us can be drunks, cocaine addicts and still become Presidents? I think Roosevelt saw the disconnection in that too. Some people work hard only to lose it all (due to such things as Katrina or economic collapse) and some people do not work at all and they have all they want and more.
Roosevelt believed in people having social insurance. He can be seen as one who supported workers due to his view on worker’s compensation. His platform that he ran on included a National Health Service and one of the political reforms proposed was women’s suffrage. Some of Theodore Roosevelt’s progressive measures from my socialist point of view were great!
Roosevelt is by far not the only Republican worth discussing though. I would argue that, former congressman Paul Norton “Pete” McClosky Jr. did more for the environment in the United States than former Democrat Vice-President Al-Gore. In his sixteen years in office he was the “co-chair of the first Earth Day in 1970. He coauthored several pieces of environmental legislation, among them the Endangered Species, Marine Mammal, Coastal Zone and Estuarine protection acts. He also served as congressional advisor to the Law of the Sea Conference and the International Whaling Commission.”
Mr. McClosky is no longer a member of the Republican Party as he no longer thinks that the party represents him. I agree with him because all I hear coming out of the GOP now is the same vehement speeches about how taxes should be cut. As if cutting taxes was the panacea of all our problems. That is I suppose the main problem of the Republican Party now :it has degenerated so much over the last few decades that now it has finally broken apart in many pieces (just like the country itself). Now what is left out of the Republican Party is a salad of some lobbyists, tea-baggers (or whatever they are called – they supposedly are divided in many different groups too from what I have heard) and perhaps a few Republicans.
I do indeed think that there are still Republicans worth a vote for! Ron Paul (senior) is one of them. To those who say he is too old, I would like to point-out that McCain did not seem too old a couple of years ago. I know this is extremely hard to imagine but what would have happened if for example, Ron Paul was President instead of George W. Bush?
I am inclined to say that the United States would not have been in the economic decay that it is in now. Ron Paul would not have taken the United States into Iraq – big money-saver there! He might have succeeded in taking back the control of the currency from the crooks at the Federal Reserve Bank, finally releasing people from the financial slavery they are in. I am certain life would have been much better not only for the United States but for many people in other countries as well.
For now, the United States is left with a political system running in circles. There is nothing progressive about it. Interest groups spend billions of dollars in shaping public opinion through “political pundits”, advertising and highly controlled media outlets. The same interest groups fund the political candidates around the country with little regard of whether they are Democrats or Republicans. Luckily, this pretend-to-be democratic capitalist system is so broken that it cannot go in circles much longer. If fundamental changes do not take place, such as abolishing the Federal Reserve Act and throwing lobbyists out of Capitol Hill then, I do believe the entire system will collapse from within just as the pretend-to-be communist regime of the Soviet Union crumbled in the late eighties. What we really have in the United States is by far not a democracy. The government is not representing the majority of the people but the wealthiest lobbyists.