When I first began this post, I was thinking that President Obama's 2012 campaign's recent adoption of the, previously derisive, term "Obamacare", was a coup, and that the President was finally taking credit for, and ownership of, his signature piece of legislation. I still believe this. I also thought that "Obamacare", because of the actual inclusion of the President's name, would be a fitting legacy that would follow his presidency through the annals of history.
As legacies go, I thought, with President Obama's name on it, it would be like the legacies of President Franklin D. Roosevelt's "New Deal" or President Lyndon B. Johnson's "War on Poverty" on steroids. As history rolls on, these legacies become disassociated from presidential name that authored these great legislative triumphs, for large portions of Americans, save historians.
On further reflection, it became appearent that fully adopting "Obamacare" versus "The Affordable Care Act (ACA)" may be a double edged sword. Yes, it would forever associate President Obama with this monumental legislative achievement, but it could also provide a big bullseye for future congressional legislators who feel more empowered to take aim at taking down "Obamacare" more so than trying to shoot down "The Affordable Care Act". While a fitting lagacy for President Obama, it may render the "ACA" more vunerable to attack, at least in the short term.
If re-elected, I would suggest the President's administration make a very subtle shift from the use of the term "Obamacare" to just "The Affordable Care Act" "ACA". "The Affordable Care Act" will still be one of President Obama's legacies, but subject to disassociation in the flow of time, as is the case of my next suggestion.
President Obama does need his own lagacy byline, like FDR's "New Deal" or LBJ's "War On Poverty". While a "war on poverty" is certainly in order now, as it was for LBJ, however because of the nature of what's wrong in America is so broad, so should the concept moniker for the President Obama's game plan. Actually, because President Roosevelt encountered similar issues, the "New Deal" was broader, and very apt, concept. However, I wouldn't recommend "New Deal V 2.0".
What America needs is a Way Forward, a movement from Republican policies, and the ideology of conservatives at large, that benefit the few at the expense of the many. We need a Way Forward that restores the belief that one's vote does, in fact, count. We need a Way Forward to a progressive tax system, that once existed. We need a Way Forward to a once thriving middle class. The Way Forward is creating strict chipped in stone, and fully transparent, election campaign financing.
But The Way Forward to all the above can't happen, unless we restore the confidence of Americans in the legislative processes of its government. The Way Forward should eliminate, or severely restrict the use of "filibustering". Until this one item alone is fully addressed, the continous gridlock that plagues our congressional legislative process, will continue to erode the confidence of Americans in their government. The Way Forward is depoliticizing the electoral machinery. The entire electoral system should be completely independent of all political parties. This absolutely insane, and contributes greatly to voter apathy!
The Way Forward should include work to eliminate of "electoral districts gerrymandering", and the "electoral college". These last two, are tools of divisiveness, not of unification, and cannot exist in a truly democratic society. These are just easily accessed tools of ideological gamemanship, with the American people caught in the middle, and the true casualty. It is painfully appearent to me that it is time for an up or down of a "simple majority" vote by the true legislative representatives of the people who's re-election will become more and more contingent on their actual service to the people.
This isn't the ramblings a naive progressive, or of a progressive, slipping slowly into the wishy-washyness of centrism, or independent voterism. No, I'm about as progressive as they come. I don't believe that there is any such thing as "compassionate" or "liberal" conservative, and I certainly don't believe that there is such thing as "progressive conservative", as one tweep describes himself. That's a oxymoron if ever there was one. What I feel is that we live in extraordinary political times, where for the first time in memory in which the the Republican Party, stripped of its obfuscatory facade, the two parties are extraordinaryly delineated.
The fact is, for the above proposals to work, this party delineation is extremely important. The revelation of the Republican's true agenda and benefactors, has availed the Democratic Party with easily acceptable values to rally behind. But, to truly go down The Way Forward, ALL members of the Democratic Party must believe in, and subscribe to, well defined Democratic Party values. Only, then can a true choice between the two parties exist. Then, maybe America and the Democratic Party can afford, and maybe benifit from, experimenting with a "let the chips fall where they may" concept. The "tyranny of the (simple) majority" should never be able to abrogate constitutionally given rights.
Already a part of President Obama's 2012 re-election campaign, it's not a big leap to what America needs is, "The Way Forward".